The Thomas Henry Simpson Memorial Institute for Medical Research was the result of a $400,000 bequest to the University by Mrs. Christine Simpson, of Detroit, in memory of her husband. The primary subject for research, as stipulated by the donor, was the study of pernicious anemia and its treatment. Other disorders affecting the blood were also investigated. Designed by Albert Kahn, the four-story granite building was dedicated on February 10, 1927.

Albert Kahn, the architect selected by Mrs. Simpson, completed the plans by May 22, 1925, and on May 28 the contract was let to the firm of Henry L. Vanderhorst, of Kalamazoo, Michigan. Ground was broken for the building by Mrs. Simpson on June 3, 1925, and thereafter construction progressed at a rapid rate. By June 29, 1926, the building was completed.

The three-story institute is located on South Observatory Street, just across from the Alice Lloyd Residence Hall, and features a lobby, offices, laboratories, a library and a conference room. The third floor was originally used as a treatment ward that could hold up to ten patients.

While the third floor ward is now gone, the building itself remains in similar condition, featuring the same entrance hall of walnut paneling. The entrance hall now showcases various glass-encased historical medical artifacts dating as far back as the mid-18th Century. These artifacts include various bloodletting tools and devices used in pernicious anemia treatment.


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