Name: Florence A. Hixson Papers

Dates: 1939-1989

Extent: 1 cubic foot

Historical Note: Florence Alberta Hixson was born in Bingen, Pennsylvania, on October 18, 1899, the youngest of eleven children. Hixson enrolled at the Hospital School of Nursing at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia and received her diploma in 1924. She received a bachelor's degree in nursing education from Columbia in 1931 and a master's degree in education from the University of Pennsylvania in 1939. In the 1940s she began work in a doctoral program in education at Columbia University, she would be awarded the degree in 1952. From 1924 until 1949, while continuing her education, Hixson taught in several hospital nursing schools in New York, Michigan and Pennsylvania. In 1949 the Alabama State legislature authorized the creation of a four-year baccalaureate nursing program at the Tuscaloosa campus of The University of Alabama. Hixson was hired as the school's first dean and moved to the campus in 1950. That fall, the school opened with 17 students and one faculty member, Dean Hixson. Throughout the 1950s and early 1960s, the nursing program continued to grow and prosper on the Tuscaloosa campus. In 1966, however, University President Frank Rose appointed a committee which he charged with making recommendations for the future of the school. The committee recommended that the School be moved from Tuscaloosa to the University's Medical Center in Birmingham where faculty and staff had been present since 1953. President Rose accepted the recommendation and the School was moved during August of 1967. Hixson remained at the new location for the next three years, and again worked to "refound" the School of Nursing at the newly autonomous University of Alabama in Birmingham (UAB). After serving as dean for twenty years, Dr. Florence A. Hixson retired effective June 30, 1970, and was named Professor Emerita by the Board of Trustees. In honor of her contributions to nursing and to UAB, the nursing student residence on the UAB campus was rededicated Florence A. Hixson Hall in 1985. Dr. Hixson returned from her home in Pennsylvania for the rededication of the building. Florence Alberta Hixson, founding dean of The University of Alabama School of Nursing, died in Pennsylvania in 1989.

Scope and Contents: Includes correspondence, news clippings, phonograph recordings, certificates and diplomas, reports, minutes, pamphlets, plaques, a scrapbook, and a feschrift.

Arrangement: Organized by material format.

Accession Number: M97-08

Provenance: After the death of Dean Hixson, her papers were donated by her brother to the School of Nursing Alumni Association. The papers remained in the Alumni Room of the School of Nursing Building at UAB until 1997 when nursing dean Dr. Rachel Booth and alumni association archivist Pat Cleveland transferred them to the UAB Archives.

Finding aid: Printed descriptive guide by Tim L. Pennycuff available in repository.

Access Points: Crossland, Kathryn M.
Denny, Linna H., d 1864-1955.
Hixson, Florence A., d 1899-1989.
Nurses z Alabama .
Nursing x Study and teaching z Alabama .
Nursing schools z Alabama z Tuscaloosa .
Nursing schools z Alabama z Birmingham .
Nursing students z Alabama .
Rose, Frank Anthony, d 1920-1991.
University of Alabama . b School of Nursing .
University of Alabama at Birmingham . b School of Nursing .
University of Alabama in Birmingham .
Volker, Joseph F., d 1913-1989.

Document Types: Certificates, Clippings, Correspondence, Diplomas, Feschrift, Minutes, Pamphlets, Phonograph records, Plaques, Reports, Scrapbooks.

Location: Manuscript Stacks

Related Series: PMC49, Florence A. Hixson Photographs

Physical Condition: For preservation purposes, several items, including photographs, phonographs, and oversized materials, have been removed and are now located in other boxes as noted in this finding aid.

This page created 1999 and last updated on 18 January 2000.

Copyright:  The University of Alabama Board of Trustees.