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Sarah Leach World War II letters

Identifier: KUMC-MSS-61

Scope and Contents

Collection of letters, photographs, and assorted ephemera of Sarah Catherine Leach, a 1937 graduate of the KU Department of Nursing who served with the 77th Evacuation Hospital during World War II.

The bulk of the collection consists of several hundred letters written by Sarah to her parents and siblings in Hutchinson, Kansas, from 1942 to 1945. Sarah’s letters chronicle her experience with the 77th Evacuation Hospital beginning with basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, and continuing through the invasion of North Africa, Sicily, England, France, Belgium, and Germany. In addition, the collection contains photographs of Sarah and her colleagues in North Africa and England, postcards, and assorted 77th Evacuation Hospital ephemera.


  • 1942 - 1945


Conditions Governing Access

Some folders are restricted because of their sensitive nature or because they contain personal or confidential information. These records are protected by federal laws such as the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). Examples of restricted records are personnel files, medical records, financial records, and any materials containing personal information such as addresses and social security numbers. Restricted materials are identified at the box and/or folder level within the finding aid. Questions about these materials may be directed to the Archivist. Access may be allowed on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of the KUMC Archives and only after a proposal has been reviewed and approved by the University of Kansas Human Subjects Committee. All requests are subject to review by the Archives staff to determine accessibility.

Conditions Governing Use

Archives staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of materials. The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of libel, privacy, and copyright which may be involved in the use of this collection.

Biographical / Historical

Sarah Catherine Leach was born in Emporia, Kansas, on May 18, 1910, to Dr. Troy Albert and Sarah Catherine (Owens) Leach. In 1923, the Leach family relocated to Hutchinson, Kansas, where Sarah finished high school. She attended Park College (now Park University) in Parkville, Missouri, and graduated with a degree in Chemistry in 1931. After spending several years teaching, she entered the University of Kansas Department of Nursing and graduated in 1937. She then taught and provided nursing supervision for the Department of Nursing and Bell Memorial Hospital.

During World War II, she enlisted with the Army and joined the 77th Evacuation Hospital, which was comprised of K.U. medical personnel. By the end of the war, she had spent 38 months in Africa and Europe with the unit.

After the war, Sarah began working at Presbyterian Hospital in Chicago and later enrolled in Columbia University in New York where she received a master’s degree in nursing administration. She then worked at the Psychological Corporation in New York before becoming Director of Nursing at Glen Cove Community Hospital in New York where she stated the first hospital ICU in the United States with ten beds. She later held the same position at Mather Hospital, Port Jefferson, New York, before retiring in 1977.

Sarah married Lloyd Jones Faeth in 1987. She died in Overland Park, Kansas, at age 92 in 2002.


.4 Cubic Feet (1 archives box)

Language of Materials



Collection folders are arranged alphabetically by subject and then chronologically.

Custodial History

Sarah Leach donated the collection to the Clendening History of Medicine Library in 1980. The collection was transferred to the University of Kansas Medical Center Archives in the 1990s.

Guide to the Sarah Leach World War II Collection
Sarah Leach World War II letters
Finding aid prepared by CAW. Finding aid encoded by CAW.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the KUMC Archives Repository

University of Kansas Medical Center
2017 Robinson, Mail Stop 1025
3901 Rainbow Boulevard
Kansas City KS 66160 United States