Wilbur Nelson Van Zile papers, 1898-2004  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Cre
Van Zile, Wilbur (Bill) Nelson
Title
Wilbur Nelson Van Zile papers
Dates
1898-2004 (inclusive)
1920-1970 (bulk)
Quantity
18 linear feet, (12 boxes (2 oversized))
Collection Number
2009-019
Summary
Wilbur Nelson Van Zile is known for his improvements and accomplishments in maxillofacial surgery. He served with the Navy Dental Corps during World War II, as Chief of Dental Services and Oral Surgeon at various Naval Hospitals, and as Professor and Chairman in the Department of Oral Surgery at the University of Oregon Dental School. This collection consists of records in various formats that identify Wilbur Van Zile and document examples of his various achievements and roles.
Repository
Oregon Health & Science University, Historical Collections & Archives
OHSU Historical Collections & Archives
Oregon Health & Science University
3181 SW Sam Jackson Park Rd. MC:LIB
Portland, OR
97239
Telephone: 503-494-5587
hcaref@ohsu.edu
Access Restrictions

Some materials in this collection may be restricted due to the presence of protected health information (PHI) or other confidential information. Please contact Historical Collections & Archives for more details regarding access.

Languages
English


Historical NoteReturn to Top

Wilbur Van Zile was born on August 24, 1904 in New Jersey and at an early age traveled with his family across the United States, settling in California. Van Zile always had an interest in short wave radio and dentistry, keeping an active on-the-air radio status and updated licenses and excelling in dentistry while improving methods for maxillofacial surgery.

After earning his Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) in 1928 and completing his undergraduate work from the University of Southern California College of Dentistry, Van Zile completed his graduate work at the University of Minnesota's Mayo Foundation. After a few years of private practice, he applied to the Navy Dental Corps and was one of nine candidates selected. During this time, he also published many articles appearing in the Journal of Oral Surgery.

During World War II, Van Zile served as an administrator of dental affairs during the South Pacific Theater of Operation (Pacific War of 1941-1945). From 1950-1959, he was Chief of Dental Services and Oral Surgeon at various Naval Hospitals and he was instrumental in starting the graduate residency program for Oral Surgery at the United States Naval Hospital in Oakland. During this time Van Zile continually strived to improve methods for oral surgery, devising a root canal technique for anterior teeth which resulted in improved healing.

Van Zile then served as Professor and Chairman in the Department of Oral Surgery at the University of Oregon Dental School (the predecessor to OHSU School of Dentistry) from 1959 to 1969. While working at the University of Oregon, Van Zile initiated a graduate residency program for Oral Maxillofacial Surgery. After retiring from teaching, he returned to private practice until 1979 when he retired from dentistry altogether.

Wilbur Van Zile belonged to many professional organizations, including Phi Kappa Phi (an International Scholastic Fraternity), the American Dental Association, the American Society of Oral Surgeons, the American Association of Hospital Dental Chiefs (Regional Vice President), the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery (Diplomat), the American College of Dentists (Fellow), the Omicron Kappa Upsilon (Honorary Member), and American Association of Dental Anesthesiologists.

Van Zile was married to Ruth Harrison. Their correspondence throughout the 1930s and 1940s gives an insightful look into Ruth's life and the lives of people before and during World War II. Van Zile met Ruth in his senior year at the University of Southern California; they were married for seventy years before her death in 1998; Wilbur died in 2009 at the age of 104.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

This collection consists of materials dating from 1898 to 2004, which document Wilbur Van Zile's work, research, and accomplishments. Records include correspondence, photographs, X-rays, slides, news clippings, pamphlets, journals, biographical notes, certificates and plaques, military records, drawings, and other personal items. Also included are a collection of dental artifacts, Navy regalia and related objects, and a scrapbook assembled by Ruth Van Zile detailing important moments in their life together.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Preferred Citation

Wilbur Nelson Van Zile papers, Collection Number 2009-019, Oregon Health & Science University, Historical Collections & Archives

Restrictions on Use

OHSU Historical Collections & Archives (HC&A) is the owner of the original materials and digitized images in our collections, however, the collection may contain materials for which copyright is not held. Patrons are responsible for determining the appropriate use or reuse of materials. Consult with HC&A to determine if we can provide permission for use.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Photographs, documents, and publications, 1898-2004,   (bulk bulk) Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folder
1 1
Photos of family and acquaintance
1914-2004
1 2
Collection of family and Navy photographs
circa 1900-2004
1 3
Dental Papers
1898-1966
1 4
Draft for pamplet: A New Technique in Root Canal Therapy for Anterior Teeth
1945
1 5
A New Technique in Root Canal Therapy for Anterior Teeth
1954
1 6
Photos and X-rays of dental work and extractions
1946-1978
1 7
Drawings of Root Canal Instrument
1945-1960
1 8
Correspondence and scholarship contribution
1998-2001
2 1
School papers: Notes, clippings, grade reports, certificate
1924-1926, 1992
2 2
U.S.S. Missouri
2 3
Radio Certificates
1920-1927
2 4
Honorary Certificates
1959-1979
2 5
Newspaper Clippings
circa 1912, 1954-1959
2 6
Biographical material: Correspondence, identification card, speech, biography
1926, 1956-1969, 2004-2006
2 7
Pamphlets (reprints)
1959-1963
2 8
Orders
2 9
Navy correspondence, covering topics such as referral, commission, and retirement
1949-1969
2 10
Papers covering topics including service history, commendation, reassignment, congratulations, reports, journals, and case reports
1931-1954
2 11
Journals: Journal of the California State Dental Association and the Nevada State Dental Society; Dental Corps of the United States Navy: A Chronology 1912-1962
1954-1962
2 12
Case report surveying the United States Navy Dental Facilities, both inland and abroad (South Pacific)
1943-1944
3
Photograph of Fleet Admiral Chester Nimitz signing the instrument of surrender abord the U.S.S. Missouri, signed by Nimitz and addressed to Captain W. N. Van Zile
1945 September 2
3
Case report regarding missile injury resulting in facial fracture and reconstructive surgery
1952-1953
3
School essays, stories, correspondence
1916-1919
3
Patent: Root Canal Instrument

Correspondence, 1941-2004Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
4
Letters written by Ruth Van Zile to Wilbur Van Zile
1949-1950
5
Letters written by Ruth Van Zile to Wilbur Van Zile
1943-1944
6
Letters written by Wilbur Van Zile, Joe E. Garcia, Ramona [?], and a Navy Dental Corps letter
1941-2004

Slides, 1945-1975Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
7
Slides covering topics such as: Dental Lectures, X-Ray, Cysts, Surgery, Technics, Pseudo Ankylon, Immobilization, Facial Fractures, and Lesions
1945-1975
8
Slides of dental and maxillofacial cases, and Oregon scenery
1953-1970

Dental artifacts, 1898-1967Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
9
Assorted artifacts including: fine-needle, medications, general dental tools, hemostat, occlusive dressings, root canal instrument, surgical instruments and syringes, and a trachea tube
1898-1967

Navy Regalia, 1931-1967Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
10
United American Mechanics pendant
10
Epaulette, Rank - Captain, Naval Dental Corps
10
Dog tags, Rank - Private
10
Dog tags, Rank - Captain
10
Belt buckle - Navy - Post World War II - Eagle clutching Anchor, surrounded by stars
10
Navy Dental Corps pendent - two acorns and a leaf
10
Navy ribbons
1950-1954
10
Navy medals
1939-1954
10
Ring with Navy insignia
10
"Our Father" prayer pendent
10
United American Mechanics pendant
10
Navy buttons
10
Navy Dental Corps pendent - two acorns and a leaf
10
Clip-on earrings - Asian design

Scrapbook of Ruth Van Zile, 1904-1952Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
11
Scrapbook containing pictures, cards, and ephemera detailing moments in Wilbur and Ruth Van Zile's lives
1904-1952

Plaques and certificates, 1900-2004,   (bulk bulk) Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box
12
Parent's Marriage Certificate
1900
12
Doctor of Dental Surgery from University of Southern California College of Dentistry
1928
12
H. Gale Water Award "Excellence: Operative Technics" from University of Southern California
1928
12
Commission into Navy, Rank: Lieutenant (junior grade)
1935
12
Commission into Navy, Rank: Lieutenant
1939
12
Member of the American Society of Oral Surgeons
1953
12
American Board of Oral Surgery Certifies Wilbur Van Zile can Practice Oral Surgery
1954
12
License to Practice Dentistry in Oregon
1959
12
Fellowship at the American College of Dentists
1959
12
Qualification to Practice Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery
1978
12
Life Member at Oregon Dental Association
1989
12
OHSU honors Mr. Van Zile for over 70 years of dentistry work on his 100th birthday
2004
12
Poster: L'arracheur de dents ("The Tooth Puller")

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Dental Instruments
  • Mouth Diseases
  • Pathology
  • World War (1939-1945)
  • Corporate Names :
  • American Dental Association
  • American Heart Association
  • Naval Aerospace Medical Institute (U.S.)
  • Oak Knoll Naval Hospital (Oakland, Calif.)
  • Oregon Health & Science University. School of Dentistry
  • Retired Officers Association (U.S.)
  • Robert E. Mitchell Center for Prisoner of War Studies
  • United States. Naval Hospital (Guam)
  • United States. Navy
  • University of Southern California
  • Geographical Names :
  • Oregon
  • Occupations :
  • Dentistry
  • Surgery, Oral