Medical supplies from Cold War found on campus

In the basement of the College of Medicine East Tower, Kevin Maley has uncovered medical supplies and other artifacts dating back to the Cold War.

Maley, a medical technologist, found water survival drums — used for drinking water and, when empty, served as a makeshift commode — along with cotton-topped applicators for tending wounds and large gauze pads to treat radiation burns.

The manufacturing date listed on the supplies show that they were made in October and November in 1962, during the administration of John F. Kennedy, around the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

Maley has many ideas as to why the supplies were found at UIC.

“I believe the Kennedy administration probably looked at UIC favorably because of its proximity to downtown Chicago, and the proximity of the Medical District,” he said.   

This is not the first time that supplies from the Cold War era have been found at UIC. In 2014, “Survival Ration Biscuit” containers were found in the basement of the Daley Library. The biscuits also dated back to 1962, during the time of President Kennedy.

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