Batson, Randolph (1916-2004)

 Digital Record
Identifier: 196
Batson, Randolph (1916-2004)


  • 1959 - 2004

Notes about Access to this Collection

All collections are subject to applicable VUMC privacy and confidentiality policies.

Reproduction Rights

Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Historical or Biographical Note

Oscar Randolph Batson was born in 1916 in Jackson, Mississippi. He graduated from Vanderbilt in 1938 with a Bachelor's degree. While an undergraduate, he was elected president of the student body and president of his fraternity, Sigma Chi. His long-standing ambition was to become a physician, and he graduated MD from Vanderbilt in 1942. During World War II he served as a Captain in the Medical Corps in Europe. He spent the next thirty years at Vanderbilt, rising to Dean of the Medical School (1963-1972) and Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs (1971-1974). His accomplishments at Vanderbilt were many. During the 1950's he worked with polio patients and invented a portable respirator. He was considered an expert on the care of polio patients and wrote the definitive chaper on treatment of polio in 1957 for a standard text book. In the early 1960s Batson established a Center of Chronic Diseases of Childhood and obtained national funding for this center. In 1962 he built the round wing, a revolutionary design and concept for hospitals. The round wing was the principal site for pediatric in-patients until the new hospital opened in 1980. Dr. Batson clearly had the idea of a pediatric hospital within a hospital and had fostered the necessary support of the Junior League and the Nashville community. In 1964, Dr. Batson directed the reorganization of the medical school curriculum. Dr. Batson was appointed Vanderbilt's first Vice-Chancellor for Medical Affairs, serving in this position from 1972---1974. In 1978 Batson left Vanderbilt to become director of the Charles Henderson Child Health Center in Troy, Alabama, where he established a clinic for better care of rural underprivileged children. Dr. Batson died on December 6, 2004.

Language of Materials



Biographical file on Dr. Batson, including reprints, newspaper clippings, obituaries, oral history transcripts, photographs, and other biographical material.

Repository Details

Part of the VUMC Historical Images and Biographies Repository

Eskind Biomedical Library
2209 Garland Ave.
Nashville TN 37232


About this Site

This site contains collection guides, or finding aids, to the archival collections held by Vanderbilt University Special Collections and University Archives, the History of Medicine Collection, and the Scarritt Bennett Center. Finding aids describe the context, arrangement, and structure of archival materials, allowing users to identify and request materials relevant to their research.

Requesting Materials

Each finding aid contains a link to request materials from the collections. Collections can also be requested by emailing the repository directly through the library website. Each repository has its own location, hours, and contact information. Please consult the repository with questions about using the materials. Collections are non-circulating and must be used in the repository’s reading room. In many cases, the collections are stored off-site and require advance notice for retrieval.