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Rolla Hoffman papers

Identifier: Ax 703

Scope and Contents note

The collection includes 381 letters from Dr. Hoffman, 1915-1957. The majority are to his family in Ohio and discuss medical, social and family news. His major correspondents are Dr. Joseph Cochran, 20 letters, and Dr. Hartman A. Lichtwardt, 27 letters, both medical missionaries in Iran. There is also an exchange of 20 letters between Dr. Edward Blair, a medical missionary in Iran, and others concerning the nursing situation in Iran in 1937-1938.

There are 9 station letters from Meshed, 14 personal reports from medical missionaries, 11 itinerating reports from 1918-1948 and 22 medical reports from the hospitals at Meshed and Resht. Also included is the manuscript of Dr. Hoffman’s autobiography, Pioneering in Meshed, The Holy City of Iran; Saga of a Medical Missionary, 9 articles on Iran and a folder of tear sheets of articles by Dr. Hoffman and others about Iran.


  • 1915-1957


Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open to the public. Collection must be used in Special Collections and University Archives Reading Room. Collection or parts of collection may be stored offsite. Please contact Special Collections and University Archives in advance of your visit to allow for transportation time.

Conditions Governing Use note

Property rights reside with Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Special Collections and University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Biographical/Historical note

Rolla Edwards Hoffman, medical missionary for the United Presbyterian Church in the USA, served in Iran for 42 years. Dr. Hoffman was born in Leipsic, Ohio in 1887. He graduated from Berea College in 1908, spent the first year of medical school at American Medical Missionary College, and received his M.D. from Western Reserve University in 1913. He worked in Tehran during 1915-1916, 1932-1933, and 1940-1942. He was in charge of the American Hospital in Meshed from 1916-1947 and the Christian Hospital in Resht from 1948-1957.

In 1919, Dr. Hoffman married Helen Easton, a nurse working in Iran. They had two children, Elizabeth and Harriet. Helen Hoffman died in 1949. Dr. Hoffman married Dr. Adelaide Kibbe Frame, widow of Dr. John Davidson Frame and a medical missionary with 28 years of service in Iran, in 1950.


0.5 linear feet (1 container)

Language of Materials



Rolla Edwards Hoffman (1887-1974) was a medical missionary in Iran in Tehran and Meshed (Masshad) from 1916-1947. The collection includes correspondence, reports, manuscripts and tear sheets that reflect his work as a medical missionary.

Arrangement note

Collection is organized into the following series:

Series: Correspondence

Series: Personal reports

Series: Itinerating reports

Series: Medical reports

Series: Manuscripts

Series: Tear sheets

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Gift of Rolla Hoffman in 1971.

Processing Information

Collection processed by staff.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Guide to the Rolla Hoffman Papers
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Language of description note
Finding aid written in English
Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Repository Details

Part of the University of Oregon Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives Repository

1299 University of Oregon
Eugene OR 97403-1299 USA