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Macdonald, Professor George

Macdonald, George, 1903-1967.
  • Archives and manuscripts

About this work


George Macdonald was an eminent malariologist who is particularly noted for his work on mathematical modelling of the epidemiology of malaria and other vector-borne diseases, in particular schistosomiasis. He was relatively early in perceiving the value of computer analysis in this area. These papers deal predominantly with the later stages of his career, although there is some material relating to his pre-war activities. They reflect his work as an international figure in the prevention and control of malaria, his involvement with numerous governmental and non-governmental bodies, his relationship with colleagues, his numerous tours on professional business, and his research and writing. Some files found during the sorting of these papers were identified as being those of the Ross Institute rather than Macdonald himself and have been returned to the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine for incorporation into the Institute's own archives.



Physical description

14 boxes


A. Correspondence (mainly individuals)

B. Institutions and organisations

C. Travel

D. Water Purification

E. Research

- 1 Malaria

- 2 Schistosomiasis

- 3 General

- 4 Papers by others

F. Writings

- 1 Lectures, reports, and drafts

- 2 Health of Labourers in Tropical Medicine

- 2 Course notes

- 3 Radio broadcasts

- 4 Published papers

Acquisition note

This collection was transferred on permanent loan to the Contemporary Medical Archives Centre, Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, by Professor David Bradley of the Tropical Health Epidemiology Unit of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in April 1995.

Biographical note

George Macdonald CMG, MD, FRCP, Ch.B, DPH, DTM (1903-1967) was a Professor of Tropical Hygiene, 1946-1967, and Director of the Ross Institute, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, 1945-1967.

1903 born in Sheffield, son of J S Macdonald, Professor of Physiology, Sheffield University

1914 family moves to Liverpool

- Educated at King Edward VI School Sheffield, Liverpool Institute and Liverpool University

1924 graduates MB ChB from Liverpool University and takes diploma in tropical medicine and hygiene at Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine

1925 research assistant at the Sir Alfred Jones Research Laboratory at Freetown, Sierra Leone

1929 malaria research officer, Malaria Survey of India

1932 appointed medical officer, Mariani Medical Association in Assam

- MD Liverpool

- Diploma in Public Health, London

- marries Mary Hetherington

1937 appointed assistant director at the Ross Institute for Tropical Hygiene: in Ceylon [Sri Lanka] as malariologist to the Ross Institute's malaria control scheme for tea and rubber estates

1939 joins RAMC

1940 with Malaria Field Laboratory to Middle East

1943 Malaria Consultant Middle East Force. Mentioned in dispatches.

1944 Malaria Consultant Central Mediterranean Force

1945 returns to Ross Institute as Director

1946 appointed to chair in tropical hygiene at University of London

1948 appointed a member of the expert panel on malaria of the World Health Organization

1949 consultant in malaria to the Army

1952 led the WHO mission to Korea

1953 CMG

1954 awarded the Darling foundation medal and prize by the World Health Assembly for his work on the epidemiology of malaria

1955 FRCP

1957 The Epidemiology and Control of Malaria published

1964 applies his mathematical epidemiological analysis to schistosomiasis

1965 President of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene

1966 diagnosed with lung cancer

1967 Dec 10 dies in University College Hospital

See also entries in Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Munk's Roll of the Royal College of Physicians, obituaries in The Lancet and British Medical Journal, Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene, and The Times, and Who was Who.

Related material

There is material in the archives at the London School of Hygiene and Medicine, 1937-1945, mainly diaries relating to Macdonald's wartime activities, and some photographs. The records of the Ross Institute, including those for the period when Macdonald was director, are also among the archives at LSHTM.

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