Inauguration of Promenade Sir William Osler
A section of Drummond Street is renamed Promenade Sir William Osler.
Beginning this morning, the top of Drummond Street no longer ends at the foot of Mount Royal. For today, Montreal Mayor Pierre Bourque and McGill University Chancellor Richard W. Pound unveiled a plaque designating as Promenade Sir-William-Osler the upper section of the street. It is here that one of the buildings, the McIntyre Medical Sciences Building of McGill University, houses the Osler Library (History of Medicine).
"The world famous Osler Library (History of Medicine) is unique in Canada. It is treasures like these that enrich the intellectual life of the city," emphasized Mayor Bourque in response to Principal Shapiro and Dean of Medicine Abraham Fuks, who outlined the life and career of Dr Osler. This year is the 150th anniversary of the birth of this giant of modern medicine.
In his speech, Principal Shapiro noted that "One of the great distinctions of the McGill Faculty of Medicine is to have trained William Osler, to have perceived his talents as a clinician and as a teacher and to have launched his brilliant career by granting him a chair when he was only twenty-six years of age." It was as a professor at McGill from 1875 to 1884 that Osler integrated biology and the microscope with clinical pathology.
Later, first at the University of Pennsylvania, in Philadelphia, and then at the Faculty of Medicine of Johns Hopkins University, Osler fine-tuned what became known as the Hopkins model of teaching medicine, by bringing the laboratory and everyday bedside practice to the teaching of medicine. The Hopkins model revolutionized medical training in North America and Great Britain. His text, Principles and Practice of Medicine, published in 1892, remained the bible of medicine in the English speaking world for more than 30 years.
In 1905, William Osler left Baltimore for Oxford University, where he was named Regius Professor of Medicine. The warm welcome he accorded students and colleagues, who came from around the world, earned for his home the nickname Open Arms. And, always, he remained faithful to his alma mater, "It was here, McGill, that he chose as the final repository for his ashes, amid his precious library collection, including the original editions of his favourite authors, Brown, Burton and Rabelais," pointed out Principal Shapiro.
Richard Pound, who will be officially installed as Chancellor of McGill University this afternoon at the Fall Convocation, thanked the City of Montreal for having given two of the streets surrounding the Universitys medical sciences building the names of two of its most famous physicians, Sir William Osler and Dr Wilder Penfield.