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APA Historical Database: Selected Entries


On April 11:

1755 — James Parkinson was born. Parkinson was an English naturalist and medical doctor whose tract An Essay on the Shaking Palsy (1817) first described the neurological condition that bears his name. The name Parkinson's disease was coined by Jean-Martin Charcot and was not adopted by the British for several decades.

1861 — An aphasic patient named Leborgne entered Paul Broca's surgical ward at the Bicêtre asylum. Leborgne was called "Tan" because, except for occasional curses, it was his only word. He died on April 17, giving Broca the opportunity to do the critical autopsy that resulted in identification of the language centers of the brain.

1870 — Oliver Munsell's book Psychology, the Science of Mind, an early American work, was published.

1879 — The first public mental hospital in what would become South Dakota was opened in Yankton. Public patients with mental illness in Dakota Territory were sent to Minnesota's public hospitals until 1878, when overcrowding there and in other nearby states prompted territorial governor William A. Howard to purchase two frame structures in Yankton and move them to a new site, where were joined.

1887 — Edward Alexander Bott was born. Bott's research concentrated on perception, rehabilitation, and military personnel assessment. He is best known, however, as an architect of organized psychology in Canada. He was a founder and the first president (1940) of the Canadian Psychological Association (CPA) and the first fellow of the CPA.

1893 — Franz Brentano left the Roman Catholic priesthood. Brentano's empirical philosophy had put increasing distance between him and the church and finally led to an open split.

1906 — The correspondence between Sigmund Freud and Carl Jung began with a letter from Freud thanking Jung for sending him a book of Jung's word association studies that supported Freud's theory of neurosis.

1910 — The third state mental hospital solely for the care of African American patients was established by the Maryland state legislature. The hospital, which opened at Crownsville on July 21, 1911, was known as the Hospital for the Negro Insane of Maryland. The hospital was later named Crownsville State Hospital and is now Crownsville Hospital Center.

1915 — John I. Lacey was born. Lacey's research, with Beatrice C. Lacey, has integrated neurophysiological and psychophysiological events and theories. The relation between cardiovascular activity, attention, and sensorimotor activity has served as the proving ground of their theories. APA Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award, 1976; Ameican Psychological Foundation Psychological Science Gold Medal, 1985.

1936 — At its seventh annual meeting at Fordham University, the New York Branch of the APA changed its name to the Eastern Branch of the APA, a precursor of the Eastern Psychological Association.

1943 — The APA Board of Editors authorized the second guide to APA editorial style. John Anderson and Willard Valentine wrote the guide, which was published as an article in Psychological Bulletin in 1944.

1953 — Congress created the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) and abolished the Federal Security Agency. Oveta Culp Hobby was the first secretary of HEW. HEW programs of interest to psychologists included the National Institutes of Health, the Office of Education, and the Alcohol, Drug Abuse, and Mental Health Administration. In 1979, HEW was divided into the Department of Education and the Department of Health and Human Services.

1963 — George Sperling's article "A Model for Visual Memory Tasks" was published in Human Factors.

1966 — William Masters and Virginia Johnson's book Human Sexual Response was published. Masters and Johnson's research attracted widespread popular attention and had important effects on the practice of psychological counseling.

1986 — The first Annual Conference on Applied Social Psychology was held in Santa Cruz, California.

1990 — Eleanor E. Maccoby's article "Gender and Relationships: A Developmental Account" was published in the American Psychologist. The article was originally delivered as an APA Distinguished Scientific Contributions Award to the 1989 APA convention in New Orleans and was frequently cited by other authors after its publication.

2004 — Walden University, of Minneapolis, Minnesota, became the first institution to enter into a PsycARTICLES licensing agreement with the American Psychological Association. PsycARTICLES is a database of full-text articles from journals published by the American Psychological Association, the APA Educational Publishing Foundation, the Canadian Psychological Association, and Hogrefe & Huber. More than 39,000 articles from 53 journals were included when PsycARTICLES was first released in April 2004.


Copyright © 1995, American Psychological Association. Web version by permission. Source: Street, W. R. (1994). A Chronology of Noteworthy Events in American Psychology. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. The American Psychological Association and Central Washington University have supported the development of the APA Historical Database.

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