Original Repository: Howard University. Moorland-Spingarn Research Center. Charles R. Drew Papers
Reproduced with permission of the Moorland-Spingarn Research Center.
"My Chief Interest Was and Is Surgery"--Howard University, 1941-1950
January 27, 1947
Dear Mrs. Bates:
I consider the program which you are sponsoring on January 29, 1947, as a great honor. One seldom merits such honor, for in
the field of science wherever any advance is made the work of many people is involved and it always seems just a little bit
unfair that one name should be chosen from the list for special commendation.
To your students I would say this: There are so many things still unknown in almost every realm of knowledge, and the need
for this knowledge is so great that in the very vast majority of instances any new addition not only is accepted but the individual
who creates the work is accepted without very much regard to race, color, or creed. There are many difficulties to overcome
it is true, but our greatest difficulty still remains in the fact that we do not have very much to offer which anyone wants.
So much of our energy is spent in overcoming the constricting environment in which we live that little energy is left for
creating new ideas or things. Whenever, however, one breaks out of this rather high-walled prison of the "Negro problem"
by virtue of some worthwhile contribution, not only is he himself allowed more freedom, but a part of the wall crumbles. And
so it should be the aim of every student in science to knock down at least one or two bricks by virtue of his accomplishments.