Name Spies Nutrition Clinic Collection

Dates 1937-1967

Extent 1.5 cubic feet

Historical Note The Spies Nutrition Clinic was operated out of Birmingham’s Hillman Hospital by Dr. Tom D. Spies from 1936 until 1960.  Dr. Spies -- [pronounced Spees, rhymes with keys] -- was a native Texan and was at the time a noted researcher from the University of Cincinnati.  He was first invited to Birmingham in 1935 by Dr. James S. McLester, physician-in-chief of the Hillman Hospital and the then-president of the American Medical Association.  Dr. Spies’ treatment of pellagra sufferers was successful in Birmingham and he was persuaded to establish a clinic in the Hillman Hospital, the city's charity hospital facility that was operated by the Jefferson County Commission.  In 1945 Spies and six social workers, including Martha Hutchinson, began a project to determine the effects of daily supplements of milk on the growth and development of malnourished children.  This study, which was successfully completed in 1950, was done in cooperation with the American Dry Milk Institute.  In 1947 Dr. Spies was appointed to the faculty of the medical school at Northwestern University; he would retain this appointment until his death.  After the four-year Medical College of Alabama was installed in the Jefferson and Hillman hospitals in 1945, Dr. Spies retained his faculty appointment at Northwestern but was appointed as a visiting professor at the medical college.  Despite being located within the facilities of the new medical school, Spies was never a member of the full-time faculty in Birmingham.  Research continued in the clinic until the death of Dr. Spies in 1960 in New York.  He left no provisions for the continuation of his clinic and the university was in desperate need of additional space, so the clinic was closed soon after his death.

Scope & Contents Includes correspondence, research case histories, news clippings, administrative and financial materials of the clinic, and reprints of research papers.

Arrangement Organized into three discrete series: 1. Correspondence of Martha Hutchinson and Dr. William Niedermeier, 1945-1967; 2. Clinic Administrative Files, 1940-1950; 3. Printed Matter, 1937-1960.

Accession Number M92-05

Provenance These materials were donated in the late 1980s by Dr. William Niedermeier and Martha Hutchinson to the Jefferson County Medical Society/UAB Health Sciences Archives.  In 1992 the materials were transferred from the disbanded health sciences archives to the new UAB Archives at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB).

Copyright Researchers should note that the University does not own copyrights to all the materials contained within this collection.

Finding aid Descriptive guide by William A. Harris available in repository.

Access Points

American Dry Milk Institute.

Dairy products in human nutrition.

Hillman Hospital (Birmingham, Ala.).

Hutchinson, Martha.

Jefferson-Hillman Hospital (Birmingham, Ala.).


Niedermeier, William,  d  b. 1923.

Nutrition  x  Research  x  Alabama.

Spies Nutrition Clinic (Birmingham, Ala.).

Spies, Tom Douglas,  d  1902-1960.

University of Alabama.  b  Medical College of Alabama.

Vitamins in human nutrition.

Document Types






Location Manuscript Stacks

Related Series PMC5, Spies Nutrition Clinic Photograph Collection
MC115, William P. Niedermeier Papers

Physical Condition Acid free folders and acid free boxes

This page created 1999 and last updated 2021

Copyright:  The University of Alabama Board of Trustees.