The Rose Melnick Medical Museum was founded in 1985 by Youngstown radiologist Dr. John C. Melnick. It was Dr. Melnick’s dream to create a museum that would cultivate an interest in medicine and promote medical history among the students, physicians, and general public of Youngstown and the Mahoning Valley. With the grand opening of the Museum on October 15, 2001, his dream became a reality.
The Museum is named in honor of Dr. Melnick’s mother, Rose Melnick, who inspired him to pursue a life in medicine. It is located in Melnick Hall on the Youngstown State University campus, a facility that was dedicated on June 8, 2000. The Museum houses thousands of medical artifacts consisting of instruments, equipment, and research materials documenting the history of medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, and nursing with a local focus.
The Museum displays permanent and changing exhibits on the history of medicine, offers lectures on various medical topics, and serves as a research facility and gathering place for the medical community and the general public.
Dr. John C. Melnick
In 1949, Dr. Melnick graduated from Youngstown College (now Youngstown State University) with a degree in Pre-Med. He received a teaching certificate after completing graduate work in education, followed by a one-year Research Fellowship in Biochemistry at Case Western Reserve University. Dr. Melnick received his Doctor of Medicine Degree in 1955 from Case Western Reserve. After interning and completing his residency in Radiology with the Youngstown Hospital Association, Dr. Melnick served a year as a Clinical Fellow in Radiology at the University of Cincinnati.
Dr. Melnick served as a staff Radiologist at Southside and Northside Medical centers of the Western Reserve Care System, Chief of the Diagnostic Imaging Department, and Director of the Department of Nuclear Medicine. In 1966 Dr. Melnick discovered a rare bone disease, Melnick Needles Syndrome, which is named in his honor. His writings on the syndrome, as well as other topics, have been published in major medical textbooks and journals.
Dr. Melnick was past president of the Mahoning County Medical Society. During the Society’s centennial in 1972, he served as editor of the Bulletin, which published a number of historical articles. This became the basis of his book “A History of Medicine in Youngstown and Mahoning County,” published in 1973.
Dr. Melnick was knighted by the Order of St. John in 1979, selected as Doctor of the Year by the Mahoning County Medical Society in 1981, and received the Priscilla Taylor Man of the Year Award from the Ballet Western Reserve in 1985.
In 1998, Dr. Melnick retired from his practice. In addition to founding the Rose Melnick Medical Museum, he was also involved in developing a Mill Creek Park Museum and financed the construction of an observation tower in the park, named after his father.
Dr. Melnick passed away in 2008.
Some of Dr. Melnick’s professional papers are available for research in the Youngstown State University Archives. For more information about his papers, please refer to the finding aid.