The Special Collections and Archives department is located in the David D. Palmer Health Sciences Library on Palmer's Davenport Campus. Access to materials and reference assistance is provided in the department's Reading Room on the first floor of the Library (L103). Regular hours are Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Researchers, particularly those from out of town, are encouraged to contact the department to ensure the availability of materials and staff.

Special Collections and Archives contains more than 10,000 books and 2,500 journal volumes, and is considered the most comprehensive chiropractic historical resource in the world. Archival material also includes Palmer's College Archives and other materials from the chiropractic profession. Resources in chiropractic, osteopathy, homeopathy, and other non-drug and non-surgical health sciences are collected, and are available for in-house use by researchers.


Special Collections and Archives contains more than 1,000 cubic feet of manuscripts, photos, and audio-visual materials, and other resources. Highlights include the manuscripts and papers of:

  • D.D. Palmer (1845-1913), the Founder of Chiropractic and what is now called Palmer College of Chiropractic; 
  • B.J. Palmer (1882-1961), son of D.D. and President of the Palmer School of Chiropractic from 1906-1961; 
  • David D. Palmer (1906-1978), son of B.J. and Mabel Heath Palmer, President of Palmer College of Chiropractic from 1961-1978; 
  • Kenneth Cronk (1907-1980), Galen Price (1912-2000), and Ronald Frogley (1924-2005), long-time influential Palmer faculty members; 
  • Lyndon Lee (1887-1983), a chiropractic pioneer from New York;
  • Gustave Dubbs (Lincoln Chiropractic College, 1949), the National Director of Comprehensive Health Planning;
  • Ted Shrader (1919-) (Ratledge College, 1940), Chair of the ACA's Council on Technic for fourteen years;
  • The Lensgraf family, an early and extensive family of chiropractors;
  • Russell Gibbons (1931-2010)  and Walter Wardwell (1918-2005), prominent and widely published chiropractic historians.
B.J. Portrait 

The department also manages Palmer's College Archives. These records document the history of the College and are arranged by campus and by department.

Oral Histories: Special Collections and Archives contains a number of oral histories of chiropractors and of other individuals closely connected with chiropractic. The online guide (pdf) names the interviewee, the interviewer, the date of the interview, where and when the interviewee graduated, and whether or not the tapes have been transcribed. For help in accessing the interviews, please contact the department by telephone at (563) 884-5893, (563) 884-5894, or by e-mail at specialcollections@palmer.edu.

Mabel Portrait Palmer Green Books: From 1906 to 1963 the Palmer School of Chiropractic published a set of textbooks emphasizing chiropractic technique and philosophy. The 39 volumes have become known collectively as the "Green Books," and are described in an online bibliography.
Dave Portrait 

PhotographsSpecial Collections and Archives can provide digital and photographic reproductions of selected images from our collections for a fee. To obtain information on this service, contact the department at (563) 884-5893, (563) 884-5894, or specialcollections@palmer.edu. A small sample of available images can be viewed in our online gallery.

Palmer College of Chiropractic is a member of the Upper Mississippi Valley Digital Image Archive Project, which includes some 200 Palmer images.

There are several policies concerning Special Collections and Archives, including: Rules Governing the Use of Special Collections, Acquisitions for Special Collections, and Entry into and use of College Archives. For a complete list of library policies, click here.

Special Collections and Archives offers access to its collections and reference assistance Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Literature searches on historical questions are performed as time permits. Photocopies of materials from the collection are available within copyright restrictions. Document delivery fees apply. Reference queries are accepted in person, by telephone (563) 884-5893, (563) 884-5894, fax (563) 884-5267, e-mail to Special Collections Librarian or by mail to:

Special Collections and Archives
David D. Palmer Health Sciences Library
Palmer College of Chiropractic
1000 Brady Street
Davenport, IA 52803-5214 

Link Disclaimer "The Palmer Chiropractic page contains links to third-party Web sites. These links are provided solely as a convenience to you. Palmer Chiropractic is not responsible for the content of linked third-party sites and does not make any representations regarding either the content or accuracy of materials on such third-party Web sites. If you decide to access linked third-party Web sites, you do so at your own risk. Your use of third-party Web sites is subject to the Terms and Conditions of use for those sites."

Contact Us

Davenport, Iowa, Campus
Academic Affairs
(563) 884-5466

San Jose, Calif., Campus
Academic Administration
(408) 944-6021

Port Orange, Fla., Campus
Academic Affairs
(386) 763-2760