The origins of the OHSU School of Nursing can be traced to the summer of 1919 when the University of Oregon introduced the state's first professional courses in nursing. The courses were offered in Portland in cooperation with the Northwest Division of the American Red Cross Home Service Department, the Portland Visiting Nurse Association, the Welfare Bureau, and the Oregon Tuberculosis Association. During this time, the Portland School of Social Work offered a standard course of study in public health nursing. The materials trace the adminsitration of the school through the present day. The transfer of the materials is based on the descretion of the administrative offices of the School and are therefore sometimes incomplete.
The OHSU library was founded in 1893 as part of the University of Oregon Medical Department. In 1919, the library's 4,000 books moved up the hill to what is now Mackenzie Hall. In 1939, the library moved into a new building next door and then relocated again in 1991 with the opening of the Biomedical Information Communication Center (BICC). This collection spans the library's history, with materials produced largely by library employees and committee members.