Last Update: 30/01/2013 17:42
Also view: Awards
and Lectures and Prizes
American College of
Archibald Watson Medal
B K Rank
(Weary) Dunlop Memorial Lecture
George Adlington Syme
Medal and Lecture
Hamilton Russell Medal
Moran Memorial Lecture in Medical History
Kenneth Fitzpatrick Russell Memorial
Peter Jones Memorial
Rupert Downes Memorial
College of Surgeons' Lecture
The American College of Surgeons provides for a Travelling
Scholarship for a young ACS Fellow to visit Australia and New
Zealand. The purpose of this fellowship is to encourage
international exchange of information concerning surgical science,
practice, and education and to establish professional and academic
collaborations and friendships. The recipient of this scholarship
presents the American College of Surgeons' lecture and visits
several medical centres in the Australasian region.
Archibald Watson Medal and Lecture
Archibald Watson is one of the most colourful characters in
Australasian medical history. The legends surrounding his life may
tend to overshadow his achievements as a surgeon and anatomist, but
his legacy as a teacher and mentor to generations of Australian
surgeons cannot be overestimated. Wood Jones considered him
"without doubt the finest topographical anatomist of his time".
Surgeons of the calibre of Newland, Devine and Dunhill sought his
advice when faced with difficult cases.
He was born at Tarcutta on 27 July 1849, the eldest of the four
sons of Sydney Grandison Watson, pioneer pastoralist of the Upper
Murray, who settled at Walwa in 1846, and held leases on more than
100,000 acres along the southern bank of the Murray. His three
younger brothers, Sydney, Harry and McGregor, became pioneers in
Queensland, occupying, at the ages of 16 to 18 years, the vast
station at Gregory Downs in the Gulf country in 1870.
As the eldest, Archibald was sent to Melbourne to be educated at
Scotch College. On leaving school his restless spirit called him in
search of adventure in the South Seas, and he took passage in the
brig Carl, an ill-fated voyage that was to haunt him for the rest
of his life. Arrested on suspicion of kidnapping and murder, he
skipped bail and returned in secret to the Upper Murray, while his
father arranged for him to flee the country.
His experiences aboard the Carl determined him on a career in
medicine. He travelled via America to England, then to the
continent, taking up his studies at Göttingen (Germany), where in
1878 he received his doctorate cum laude with a thesis entitled
Über das Fibradenom der Mamma. He then proceeded to Paris (France),
gaining a second doctorate in 1880 with his thesis Étude sur le
Traitement des Hernies Estranglées et Crurales Vulgaires.
In 1884 Watson gained his Fellowship of the Royal College of
Surgeons (FRCS) and returned to Australia to take up the Elder
Chair in Anatomy in Adelaide. Here he built his unrivalled
reputation as a teacher and consultant. He later became lecturer in
Operative Surgery, pathologist and finally surgeon to the Adelaide
In 1900 he obtained leave from Adelaide to attend the Boer Wars
in Africa. Afterwards, to the chagrin of the university, he
travelled to England to catch up with old friends. He returned to
the Elder Chair in 1902, but not without some dispute.
In 1914, at the age of 65, Watson enlisted in the Australian
Imperial Force (AIF) and was sent as chief pathologist to
Gallipoli, Lemnos and Egypt. At the end of the war, he returned to
Adelaide, retired from his positions and was succeeded by Frederic
Wood Jones. He went to live in Darwin, where he did much to improve
the standards of surgical care in the tropics.
Thereafter he withdrew from active practice, spending summer in
Melbourne and Adelaide, the winter months on Thursday Island and
visiting his brothers on Gregory Downs. From 1936 he made Thursday
Island his permanent home. Feeling that the advance of age was
impairing his mobility, at the age of 86 he took delivery of a new
Archibald Watson died in his sleep on 30 July 1940 and was
buried on Thursday Island. As J. "Orm" Smith noted, "He left little
behind him in the shape of original discoveries or classical
surgical or anatomical writings. His great contributions were
contemporary...". Some 40 of his surgical notebooks are now in the
possession of the College.
The lecture is arranged jointly between the Royal Australasian
College of Surgeons and the Royal Australasian College of
- The Archibald Watson Memorial Lecture shall be delivered every
- The lecture shall be given in succession in the 6 Australian
states, beginning with South Australia (by convention, it is now
delivered at the Annual Scientific Congress).
- Subject to the approval of the Presidents of the Royal
Australasian College of Physicians and the Royal Australasian
College of Surgeons, the lecture shall be on some subject of
anatomical, surgical or medical interest.
- The award takes the form of a bronze medal.
B. K. Rank Lecture
Sir Benjamin Rank (1911-2002) was one of the world's most
distinguished plastic surgeons. He was born at Heidelberg,
Victoria, and attended the local state school before being sent to
Melbourne's Scotch College. He studied medicine at the University
of Melbourne, graduating MB Bin 1934. After a year's residency at
Royal Melbourne Hospital, he obtained his Master of Surgery in 1937
and was admitted Fellow of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS) the
In England he worked at St James' Hospital, Balham, in 1938 and
1939, and St Bartholomew's Hospital, Hill End, in 1939 and 1940.
With the outbreak of war, he enlisted in the Australian Imperial
Force (AIF) and was sent to Egypt, first to the 2/4th Australian
General Hospital, then to the 2/2nd AGH at El-Qantara, where he was
promoted Major-i.-c., Faciomaxillary and Plastic Surgery Unit.
In 1942 he was brought back to Australia to set up the Plastic
and Maxillofacial Unit at the Heidelberg Military Hospital.
Lieutenant Colonel Rank gained his Fellowship of the Royal
Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS) in 1943.
After hostilities ceased he returned to the Royal Melbourne
Hospital to take up the first plastic surgery post in Australia. He
remained with the hospital in various capacities until 1982. In
association with Alan Wakefield, he wrote Surgery of Repair as
Applied to Hand Injuries (1953), which quickly became a classic in
In 1955 he was created CMG and also joined the Council of the
College. He was censor-in-chief (1961-1962), vice-president (1962
and 1964-1965), Chairman of the Executive Committee (1958-1961 and
1964-1968), and president (1966-1968).
Many honours came his way. He was made an Honorary Fellow of the
Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada (RCPS) in 1969,
of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd) in 1973 and
of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) in 1974. He was Sims
Commonwealth Travelling Professor of Surgery in 1958 and President
of the British Association of Plastic Surgeons in 1965. He was Syme
Orator at Adelaide in 1976. He was knighted in 1972 and created
KStJ in 1988. He was also a member of the prestigious James IV
Association of Surgeons and an honorary member of Société Française
de Chirurgie Plastique et Réconstructive. He served as Chairman of
Interplast Australia between 1984 and 1993.
His interests outside the field of operative surgery were
numerous. He was Chairman and President of St John's Ambulance
Victoria from 1974 to 1983. He played an active role in medical aid
under the Colombo Plan, visiting India, Pakistan, Malaya and
Singapore. He made significant contributions to surgical history,
including the establishment of the Archives Unit at Royal Melbourne
Hospital. His other great interest was painting.
- The lecture shall be known as The B.K. Rank Lecture.
- The lecture shall be delivered at the Annual Scientific
Congress of the College, under the aegis of the Section of Plastic
and Reconstructive Surgery.
The Clinical Committee Prize is awarded to the candidate
obtaining the highest marks in the Clinical Examination. This
prize, a certificate instigated by the Board of Basic Surgical
Training in 2003, is awarded twice twice per year, in February
(Weary) Dunlop Memorial Lecture
Ernest Edward Dunlop was born on 12 July 1907 at Wangaratta,
Victoria. He began his medical studies at the Victorian College of
Pharmacy, winning the Gold Medal in 1927 and 1928. Having, however,
decided on a career in surgery, he graduated Bachelor of Medicine,
Bachelor of Surgery from the University of Melbourne in 1934, and
Master of Surgery in 1937. During his undergraduate days he
acquired the nickname "Weary" and showed himself to be an
outstanding sportsman, especially in rugby union and boxing. He
went to England to study for his Fellowship of the Royal College of
Surgeons (FRCS) at St Bartholomew's Hospital in 1938.
On the outbreak of war he enlisted in the Australian Imperial
Force (AIF) and served in Palestine, Greece and Crete in 1940 and
1941. Transferred to the Far East, he was appointed C.O. of No.1
Allied General Hospital in Java, Indonesia, only three weeks before
the Dutch surrender. Having fallen into enemy hands, he was sent to
various prisoner of war camps in Java, Malaya and finally Thailand,
where he joined thousands of allied prisoners on the infamous Burma
Railway. Here his qualities of stoicism and doggedness enabled him
to operate tirelessly on sick and injured men with the most
primitive of tools and in the crudest of facilities, and to protect
his men from the worst excesses of their captors' brutality.
After the war he returned to Australia, teaching anatomy and
pathology at the University of Melbourne (1946-1949) and taking up
numerous hospital posts at the Royal Melbourne Hospital, the
(Royal) Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, the Heidelberg Repatriation
Hospital and the Peter MacCallum Cancer Clinic. He gained his
Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS) in
His courageous and determined dedication to the care of wounded,
sick and dying patients, his fortitude and resourcefulness in the
midst of appalling conditions in the Japanese labour camps became
the stuff of legend. He was described as "a lighthouse of sanity in
a universe of madness and suffering". Mentioned in despatches
during the course of the war, he was appointed OBE in 1947. Many
other distinctions followed. He was created CMG in 1965, KStJ in
1982, AC in 1987, and he received numerous honorary awards from
governments and institutions around the world. He was named
Australian of the Year in 1977.
His experiences on the Burma Railway made him a devoted worker
in the cause of peace. In the wider medical community, he was
involved with Red Cross, the Anti-Cancer Council and the Victorian
Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency. He was Chairman of the
Australian-Asian Association from 1965, was active in the Colombo
Plan, Legacy and ever concerned with the welfare of ex-prisoners of
In 1987 the Weary Dunlop
Boon Pong Exchange Fellowship was instituted to honour him and
the memory of Boon Pong, the brave river trader who supplied him
secretly with food and medicines to help relieve the sufferings of
the allied prisoners.
Professionally he could be described as a general surgeon with a
preference for the thorax and abdomen. Among his surgical mentors
he numbered Sir Alan Newton, Sir Victor Hurley, Sir William Upjohn
and Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor. Sir Thomas Dunhill was his role
"Weary" Dunlop died of pneumonia on 2 July 1993.
- The name of the lectureship shall be The Sir Edward ("Weary")
Dunlop Memorial Lecture.
- The object of the lectureship is to acknowledge Sir Edward's
unique achievement as a symbol of strength, fortitude and hope for
the future that inspired the men who were his patients and
brothers-in-arms while prisoners of war of the Japanese in the
infamous death camps of the Second World War, particularly in
Singapore and Thailand. It is fitting that, after the war, Sir
Edward should devote so much of his time to healing the wounds of
international strife and forging links of friendship within
South-East Asia, and particularly between Australia and Japan.
- The lectureship should emphasise the twin virtues of hope in
adversity, and friendship and forgiveness between victor and
- The lecture will be given at such places and at such intervals
as Council may from time to time determine. It would be appropriate
that it should be given under the aegis of Section(s) of History
and/or Military Surgery.
- The Section(s) of History and/or Military Surgery shall make
the choice of lecturer, confirmed by Council, but the Section(s)
may delegate the right of selection of subject to the
- The objectives set out in items 2 and 3 should be followed with
a wide variety of interpretation.
- The award shall take the form of a bronze medal.
George Adlington Syme Oration
Sir George Adlington Syme (1859-1929) was one of the founders,
and first President, of the College. He was born at Nottingham and
came to Australia as a young child. He gained his medical
qualifications from the University of Melbourne, graduating in
1881. After a year at the Melbourne Hospital he went to England for
postgraduate study, worked at King's College with Sir Joseph Lister
and gained his Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS)
Back in Australia he returned to the Melbourne Hospital and also
held honorary posts at St Vincent's and the Queen Victoria Hospital
for Women. A capable administrator, he ultimately became President
of the Melbourne Hospital. He was President of the Victoria Branch
of the BMA in 1908 and 1919. During World War I he served as chief
of surgical staff in the 1st AGH and was present at Gallipoli
aboard the hospital ship Gascon. He retired from active practice in
1924 and received a knighthood in that year.
It was Syme's reputation and standing within the profession that
secured the support for the foundation of a College of Surgeons.
With Hamilton Russell and Hugh Devine, he signed the "Foundation
Letter" of 19 November 1925, and in 1926 was given the authority to
proceed with setting up the constitutional machinery for the
organisation. At the Australasian Medical Congress in Dunedin in
February 1927, he was unanimously elected President of the College
of Surgeons of Australasia.
Sir George Syme died in office on 19 April 1929 and was buried
in the Brighton Cemetery. His widow, Mabel, provided the College
with a sum of money, the interest from which was to provide the
funds for an annual oration to perpetuate his memory.
The first Syme Oration was delivered by Charles H. Fagge FRCS in
Wilson Hall at the University of Melbourne on 17 February 1932, in
conjunction with the presentation of the Great Mace. The oration is
now delivered in conjunction with convocation at the Annual
Gordon Gordon-Taylor Medal and
The Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor Memorial Lecture was founded in
1964 with the proceeds of an appeal run by the Royal College of
Surgeons of England, in association with the Middlesex Hospital,
the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh and the Royal
Australasian College of Surgeons, to perpetuate the memory of Sir
Gordon Gordon-Taylor KBE CB FRCS FRACS.
Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor was one of the finest British surgeons
of the 20th century. He was born in Aberdeen in 1878 and educated
at the University of Aberdeen, where he graduated Master of Arts in
1898. In that year he moved to London and entered the Middlesex
Hospital, qualifying in 1903. He gained his Fellowship of the Royal
College of Surgeons (FRCS) in 1906.
Gordon-Taylor quickly gained an enviable reputation as a bold
yet careful surgeon. During World War I he served with the rank of
major in a number of casualty clearing stations, gaining valuable
experience in the treatment of large abdominal wounds, and became
renowned for his successful multiple resections of the intestine.
He acted for a time as consulting surgeon to the 4th Army in
France. At this time he came into contact with surgeons from
Australia and New Zealand.
After the war he returned to the Middlesex Hospital and in 1920
succeeded Sir John Bland-Sutton as surgeon. Surgical training was
one of his great interests. He lectured and examined in anatomy for
the Royal College of Surgeons of England (RCSE) Primary and in 1934
travelled to Australia as Visiting Examiner for the RCSE. On this
occasion he was awarded an Honorary Fellowship of the
Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS). He formed very
close ties with the RACS and came to regard the College as his
second spiritual home.
On the outbreak of World War II he again enlisted but was
rejected by the army on grounds of age. Incensed, he offered his
services to the Royal Navy, which accepted him without hesitation
and gave him the rank of surgeon rear-admiral. As consulting
surgeon he travelled widely to many of the theatres of war, and in
this capacity he visited the College in 1945. He returned in 1947
to deliver the Syme Oration, and at this time the University of
Melbourne awarded him an Hon. LLD.
In 1948 a group of RACS Fellows, winners of the Hallett Prize,
created a fund for a prize for the candidate obtaining the highest
marks in the Part 1 Examination, to be known as The Gordon-Taylor
Prize. Sir Gordon travelled to Australia again in 1952. In 1960 the
College commissioned a portrait of him from the eminent painter
James Gunn RA.
He had an abiding interest in the RCSE. Elected to Council in
1932, he was vice-president from 1941 to 1943. He was Hunterian
Professor in 1929, 1942 and 1944. His education in classics made
him an excellent public speaker, and he was always in demand for
lectures and orations. During the course of his career he delivered
almost every named lecture in the surgical world, including the
inaugural Moynihan Lecture in Leeds in 1940 and the Harveian
Oration in 1949.
His life was lived for surgery. He took infrequent holidays and
had few other interests, apart from dancing, the classics and
cricket. He walked several miles every day for most of his life and
nurtured a hearty dislike of motor cars.
He was tragically, and ironically, run down by a motor car while
crossing the road outside Lord's Cricket Ground on 2 September 1960
and later died of his injuries. His passing was mourned by the
entire world of surgery. At the Council Meeting of 20 October 1960,
the following resolution was passed:
"The Council of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons has
received the news of the death of Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor with the
greatest regret; and places on record its appreciation of, and
gratitude for, his many kind services to the Fellows and Council of
- The Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor Memorial Lecture should be
delivered annually. In any 3-year period 2 lectures should be
delivered in the United Kingdom and 1 in Australia.
- Nominations for the Lecture in Australia should be made by the
President of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.
Nominations for the lectures to be delivered in the United Kingdom
rotate between the Royal College of Surgeons of England (RCSE) and
the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd). Nominations
from RCSE to be made by the President (via the Fellowship Election
and Prize Committee), in conjunction with the Senior Surgeon of the
Middlesex Hospital. Alternately, the President of RCSEd will make a
nomination. Nominations do not have to be agreed by all 3
- The subject of the lecture may be on any aspect of surgery and
is entirely the choice of the lecturer.
- Expenses for travel and subsistence up to £250 should be
provided (the honorarium was discontinued in 1994).
- The investment of the fund, and the general administrative
arrangements, shall be the responsibility of the Royal College of
Surgeons of England. The local arrangements for each lecture shall
be made by the institution at which it is to be delivered.
- The award takes the form of a bronze medal, with the portrait
of Sir Gordon Gordon-Taylor on the obverse and emblems of the 4
sponsoring bodies on the reverse.
Gordon Gordon-Taylor Prize
In 1948, five Fellows of the College who had won the Hallett
Prize on the Primary Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons of
England gave £30 each to create a fund, the interest from which
would provide a prize to be awarded in connection with the Primary
Examination of the College and to be named in honour of Sir Gordon
The five were:
- J S McMahon
- R S Lawson
- H H Eddey
- K W Starr
- Grayton Brown.
In subsequent years, other Fellows that also won the Hallett
Prize have donated to the fund: R P Melville, C B R Mann, W J Cook,
B J Dooley, J N Yelland, G Anderson and L A Riddell.
If 2 or more candidates are found to have been allocated the
same mark, it shall be open to the examiners to take such steps as
they may think desirable to enable them to adjudicate the
This prize, a bronze medal, is awarded each year to the
candidate who gains the highest marks in each of the Generic
Surgical Sciences Examinations.
The Gordon Gordon-Taylor Prize is complemented by the
Clinical Committee Prize, (a certificate), awarded to the candidate
who receives the top mark in the Clinical Examination.
Russell Medal and Lecture
Robert Hamilton Russell (1860-1933) was one of the founders of
the College and its first censor-in-chief. He was a farmer's son,
born at Chartham near Farningham in Kent. He received his medical
training at King's College Hospital, where in 1883-1884 he became
the last house surgeon to serve under Sir Joseph Lister. After
several years in a number of hospitals in England and on the
continent, he gained his Fellowship of the Royal College of
Surgeons (FRCS) in 1889, and migrated to Australia for health
On arriving in Melbourne he set up practice in Hawthorn, but met
with little success. However, he did make the acquaintance of a
promising young pianist called Percy Grainger. In 1891 he applied
for the position of medical superintendent at a country hospital.
The hospital committee refused to believe that a man with such
qualifications would be interested in such a rustic posting, unless
of course he had a problem with alcohol, and accordingly turned him
Success did come in 1892, when he was appointed to the surgical
staff of the Children's Hospital. His musical talents, which were
considerable, had made him known to a number of influential
personalities on the Women's Committee, and he also had the support
of Dr A. Jeffries Wood, one of the notable physicians on the staff.
During his time at the Children's Hospital, Russell began his
important work on the aetiology and treatment of inguinal
In 1901 he was appointed to the surgical staff of the Alfred
Hospital. Here he did the work for which he is best remembered, on
the treatment of fractures, particularly of the long bones. He
devised a simple but ingenious method of traction for fractures of
the femur. He remained an honorary surgeon to the Alfred Hospital
until 1920. He then returned to the Children's Hospital as honorary
consultant, and joined the Melbourne Hospital as consultant of
He was President of the Medical Society of Victoria in 1903, and
in 1920 he convened the Surgical Association of Melbourne. He was
one of the signatories to the "Foundation Letter" of 19 November
1925, and contributed greatly to the foundation of the College by
convincing the Surgical Association of Melbourne to disband in
favour of the new organisation.
He was elected to the original Council of the College of
Surgeons of Australasia. He was appointed the first
Director-General, then Censor-in-Chief, of the College, retaining
this position until his death. On 30 April 1933 he died of injuries
received when his car collided with a centre-road lamp post.
Russell thus has claim to being the College's earliest road trauma
The lecture was founded by the College in 1935 to perpetuate his
- The name of the lecture shall be The Hamilton Russell Memorial
- The object of the lectureship is to perpetuate the memory of
the first Censor-in-Chief of the College, the late Robert Hamilton
- The lecture shall be given at such places and at such intervals
as the Council may from time to time determine.
- The choice of the lecturer and subject shall be made by the
Council, but the Council may delegate its right of selection of the
subject to the lecturer. So far as may be possible, the lecturer
shall give an address on some subject to which reference has been
made in the published writings of the late Robert Hamilton
- The award shall take the form of a bronze medal.
Herbert Moran Memorial Lecture in Medical
Herbert Michael Moran (1885-1945) was born in Sydney. He
graduated from the University of Sydney in 1908. In his young days
he earned a considerable reputation as a rugby player. Following
his graduation he went to England as captain of an international
football team, and stayed there for some time doing
In World War I he joined the Royal Army Medical Corps (RAMC) and
served in France and the Middle East. After the war he became
interested in the new cancer treatment of radium therapy being
developed in France and Sweden. He later pioneered the surgical
application of radium in New South Wales, and indeed in Australia.
He obtained his Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of
Surgeons (FRACS) in 1929.
Sir Douglas Miller recalled Moran as "of striking appearance,
tall and handsome, and possessed [of] great personal charm. He had
a broad learning and culture, and was well versed in the
literature, both general and medical, of France and Italy, as well
as having a wide knowledge of English literature. Himself a master
of English prose, he wrote three books in beautiful English of
"He was a man of delicate temper, inclined to be suspicious,
hurt, offended and disappointed by people who did not fulfil his
high standards. The span of his professional career in Sydney was
punctuated by premature retirement from good hospital positions. He
was not prepared to put up with conditions of which he did not
Disillusioned, Moran left Sydney in the early 1930s, never to
practice there again. He lived for a few years in Italy, where he
identified with the fascist regime of Benito Mussolini. He again
became disillusioned and on the outbreak of World War II returned
to England and rejoined the RAMC. At this time he was operated on
for the removal of a mole, but the growth was only partially
Herbert Moran died on 20 November 1945 of malignant
- The name of the lecture shall be The Herbert Moran Memorial
Lecture in Medical History.
- The lecture shall be delivered in each state of the
Commonwealth of Australia and in New Zealand, at such times and in
such places as the Council may determine.
- The lecture shall be delivered during the course of a state or
New Zealand Annual Meeting (by convention, the lecture is now
delivered at the Annual Scientific Congress).
- The subject of the lecture shall be of medical historical
- The lecturer shall be appointed from time to time by the
- The award shall take the form of a bronze medal.
Jim Pryor was born at Horsham, Victoria, on 14 November 1928,
and died at Ballarat, Victoria, on 7 March 2002.
He gained his medical degrees at the University of Melbourne in
1950, with Honours in Surgery. After a residency at St Vincent's
Hospital, he travelled to the United Kingdom to obtain his
Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS). He returned to
Australia in 1959 and obtained his Fellowship of the Royal
Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS) the following year.
He lived in Ballarat, where he developed a broad and extensive
practice. He became closely involved with community activities,
especially the Ballarat Football Club. In his later years he
devoted much of his time and energy to the establishment of the Sir
Albert Coates Memorial Trust, and to the erection of a statue
honouring the city's surgical hero, who had been one of his
teachers in surgery.
Recognising an increasingly litigious mood within society and
the impact this would have on surgical practice, Jim Pryor played a
key role in the establishment of the Medico-Legal Section of the
College. He was its inaugural chairman. In addition, he made an
outstanding contribution to provincial and rural surgery.
- The name of the lectureship shall be The James Pryor Memorial
- The object of the lectureship is to acknowledge Jim Pryor's
achievements in setting up the Medico-Legal Section within the
Royal Australasian College of Surgeons.
- The lectureship will replace the existing Foundation Lecture of
the Medico-Legal Section.
- The lecture will be given at the time of the Annual Scientific
Congress, under the aegis of the Medico-Legal Section.
- The Section will be responsible for the choice of lecturer and
subject, but the Section may delegate the choice of subject to the
- There will be no tangible reward for the delivery of the
Kenneth Fitzpatrick Russell Memorial
The Kenneth Fitzpatrick Russell Memorial Lecture was founded in
1991 to perpetuate the memory of Professor Ken Russell
The son of a dentist, he was educated at Melbourne Grammar
School and at the University of Melbourne, where he graduated in
medicine in 1935. After service in World War II, he decided to
devote his talents to anatomy, and was Associate Professor in the
Department of Anatomy at Melbourne from 1948 to 1968. In 1968 the
University of Melbourne conferred on him the degree of Doctor of
Letters, the only medical graduate of the university to achieve
this distinction. In the next year the university awarded him a
Personal Chair in Anatomy and Medical History.
His contributions to scholarship in the history of medicine were
outstanding, and he was universally regarded as the doyen of
medical historians in Australia. In 1963 he produced his
bibliography British Anatomy 1525-1800, a classic of its kind. He
edited the ANZ Journal of Surgery from 1949 to 1967. In 1978 he was
awarded the rare academic honour of being presented with a
Festschrift by the AMA Section of Medical History.
Ken Russell played an instrumental role in the acquisition of
Collection. This has come to be recognized as the most important
collection of rare and historic medical books in Australasia, and
its procurement for the College was a major strategic coup. He was
also Reader to the Gordon Craig Library and a member of the
College's Library Committee, from 1945 to 1987.
- The lecture shall be known as The Kenneth Fitzpatrick Russell
- The lecture shall normally be delivered at the College's
headquarters in Melbourne.
- The lecturer shall be appointed every 2 or 3 years as
determined by Council (by convention the lecture is now delivered
every 2 years, in association with the Cowlishaw Symposium)
- The lecturer shall be given at least 12 months' notice, in
order to research for the preparation of the lecture.
- The lecturer is expected to draw upon the resources of the
College's collection of rare and historic books in the preparation
of the lecture, and to make specific reference to the College's
collections of historical books and artefacts during the course of
- The subject of the lecture shall be of anatomical, surgical or
- The lecture shall be open to anyone interested in the history
of medicine and shall not be restricted to Fellows of the
- The manuscript of the lecture shall be prepared ready for
publication in the ANZ Journal of Surgery, of which journal K.F.
Russell was editor for 18 years. Copies of the lecture will be made
available for the audience at the end of the presentation.
- The award shall take the form of a bronze medal, suitably
inscribed, which shall be presented to the lecturer at the
conclusion of the lecture.
- Council may allocate sufficient travel and living expenses to
facilitate the presentation of the lecture.
Peter Jones Memorial
Peter Griffith Jones (1922-1995) was one of Australia's
outstanding paediatric surgeons. He graduated MBBS from the
University of Melbourne in 1945, and took up a residency at the
Royal Melbourne Hospital. In 1948 he was awarded the first
Cleveland Fellowship to the University Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio,
United States. From there he went to London to pursue his studies
at the Hospital for Sick Children in Great Ormond Street, under the
guidance of Sir Denis Browne. He obtained his Fellowship of the
Royal College of Surgeons (FRCS) in 1950.
He returned to Melbourne in 1953 and took up a staff appointment
at the Royal Children's Hospital. He remained attached to this
hospital until his retirement in 1988. He was an enthusiastic
teacher and researcher, with special expertise in torticollis (wry
neck), infantile tumours, neonatal surgery and cardiac surgery of
the young. In 1995 he was the first to receive the Distinguished
Service Award of the Royal Children's Hospital.
In 1957 Peter Jones became one of the first two surgeons to gain
the Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons
(FRACS) in Paediatric Surgery.
Peter Jones was also very active in the broader profession,
serving terms as Vice-President of the Medical Defence Association
of Victoria, and as President of the Paediatric Society of
Victoria, of the Medico-Legal Society of Victoria and of the
Paediatric Association of Australia. He was Chairman of the Victorian State Committee of
the College and in 1987 was elected to the Council, on which he
served until 1994.
He had a talent for writing and publishing, becoming the
founding editor of the Australian Paediatric Journal, and, during
his time as demonstrator in Paediatric Surgery at the University of
Melbourne, editor of Chiron, the journal of the University of
Melbourne Medical Society. He was also a director of Blackwell's
Scientific Publishing Australia. Another of his great interests was
heraldry, and he designed coats-of-arms for the Royal Children's
Hospital and the Medical Defence Association of Victoria. His
interest in heritage led to his appointment as Honorary Principal
Curator and Honorary Librarian of the RACS.
The oration was instituted to perpetuate the memory of a man of
great talent and wide interests, who made a significant and
sustained contribution to surgery.
- The Peter Jones Memorial Oration will normally be delivered
biannually, but at the discretion of Council may be delivered
- The orator is to be appointed by Council following
recommendations from the Executive Committee of the Australasian
Association of Paediatric Surgeons.
- The oration will be given on the occasion of a meeting of the
Australasian Association of Paediatric Surgeons, or at an
appropriate meeting of the Royal Australasian College of
- The appointee is styled The Peter Jones Memorial Orator.
- The award will take the form of a bronze medal.
In 1989 the then president T.S. Reeve noted that the College
sometimes missed an opportunity to be identified with a significant
speaker or significant event, due to the limited number of named
lectures available at that time, and the conditions that applied to
them. He suggested that a lecture be established whereby the
president could invite persons of note to address the College.
Council resolved to establish this lecture in October 1989. It is
to be delivered from time to time by an eminent person of the
president's choice, on any subject.
- The lecture shall be known as The President's Lecture.
- The lecture will be given at the invitation of the
- The lecturer shall be an eminent person visiting or resident in
Australia or New Zealand.
- The choice of topic shall be at the discretion of the
- The award will take the form of a bronze medal.
Rupert Downes Memorial Lecture
This lecture, sponsored by his friends following his death, is
designed to perpetuate the memory of Major-General Rupert Major
Downes CMG VD KGStJ MS FRACS, Director-General of Medical Services
(1934-1941), Inspector-General of Medical Services (1941-1942),
Director of Medical Services - 2nd Australian Army (1942-1945;
killed on active service) and a foundation Fellow of this
He was born in 1885, the son of Major-General Major Francis
Downes CMG, Commandant of Military Forces in the Colony of
Victoria. At an early age he showed an interest in soldiering and
while still a boy became a trumpeter in the Victorian Volunteer
Artillery. He was educated at Haileybury College and the University
of Melbourne, graduating MB ChB in 1907. He gained his MS in 1911,
receiving his degree on the same day as (Sir) Alan Newton, who had
been a year or so behind him at Haileybury. His friendship with
Newton was lifelong, and they worked together on many matters,
especially during the World War II.
Immediately after graduation, Downes was commissioned in the
Australian Army Medical Corps. On the outbreak of World War I he
volunteered in the first Australian Imperial Force (AIF) and saw
action at Gallipoli and in Palestine, where, as commander of the
3rd Light Horse Field Ambulance, he took part in the victorious
march to Damascus. He attained the rank of Lieutenant-Colonel and
was appointed CMG.
After the war he was appointed an honorary paediatric surgeon to
the (Royal) Children's Hospital in Melbourne. He served for many
years on the Victorian Branch Council of the BMA and was elected
its President in 1935. He was Honorary Surgeon to the
Governor-General (Lord Stonehaven) from 1927 to 1931. One of his
greatest preoccupations during the interwar period, when defence
expenditure was at an all-time low, was the maintenance of medical
preparedness for war. He engaged his officers in army medical
organisation and administration, in issues of equipment and supply,
technical advances and field exercises.
His many other professional interests included physiotherapy
training, first aid and the civil ambulance service. He lectured in
medical ethics and demonstrated in anatomy at the University of
Major-General Downes was killed when his aircraft crashed on 5
March 1945. He was buried in Cairns Cemetery.
- The sum of £640 shall be invested by the Council of the College
and shall form the endowment for a triennial lecture to be entitled
The Rupert Downes Memorial Lecture.
- Any sum, after payment of expenses, not so applied, shall be
added to the capital and form part thereof.
- The lecturer shall be appointed every third year.
- The Council shall determine the place and time of the triennial
lecture, which shall be open to all members of the medical
profession, and such other guests as the Council may invite.
- The subject of the lecture shall be related to some aspect or
aspects of military surgery, medical equipment (military and
civil), the surgery of children, neurosurgery, general surgery,
medical ethics or medical history; these being subjects in which
Major-General Downes was particularly interested.
- The award shall take the form of a bronze medal.
William Manchester Lecture
This lecture was established in 1989 to honour Sir William
Manchester (1913-2001). It is delivered at the Annual Scientific
Congress whenever it is held in New Zealand, and may be delivered
at other times as determined by the New Zealand National Board.
William M. Manchester was born at Waimate in 1913. As a child he
suffered a scalp laceration, which required stitching, and he was
so impressed with the surgeon who treated him that he decided to
become a doctor.
He studied medicine at the University of Otago, where he
graduated MB ChB in 1938. In 1940 he enlisted in the New Zealand
Medical Corps and was posted overseas with the 22nd NZ Infantry
Battalion. In November 1940 he was seconded to train in plastic
surgery in the United Kingdom, under Gillies, McIndoe and Mowlem,
after which he was sent to 1 General Hospital at Helwan (Egypt) to
set up the plastic and reconstructive surgery unit. After two years
in the Middle East he was recalled to New Zealand as assistant
surgeon in the Military Plastic Surgical Unit at Burwood Hospital,
near Christchurch, becoming OC of the unit (1944-1947).
At the end of the war he was given the task of establishing New
Zealand's first civilian plastic surgery unit at Burwood. Late in
1947 he returned to the United Kingdom for further post-graduate
study, gaining his Fellowship of the Royal College of Surgeons
(FRCS) in 1949. He returned to New Zealand to take up a position at
Middlemore Hospital, Auckland. He remained with the hospital for
the rest of his working life, until his retirement in 1979.
He gained his Fellowship of the Royal Australasian College of
Surgeons (FRACS) in 1957. He served as an examiner and board member
in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. He was elected to the New
Zealand Committee of the College in 1964 and became its Chairman in
1970. He played an instrumental role in the formation of the New
Zealand Association of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, and was
its inaugural Chairman in 1976. He was an active member of the
International Confederation of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery,
as Secretary General (1967 to 1971) and as Vice-President of the
5th International Congress in Melbourne in 1971.
He was created CBE in 1972 for his services to plastic surgery,
and elevated to KBE in 1987.
- The lecture shall be known as The William Manchester
- The lecture shall be delivered at the Annual Scientific
Congress of the College whenever it is held in New Zealand, and may
also be delivered at other times as determined by the New Zealand
- The lecturer must be an Australasian plastic surgeon who has
made a significant contribution to the specialty of Plastic and
Reconstructive Surgery in recent times.