Black History Month, the National Cancer Act—and opening up the archives

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As the Cancer History Project gets underway, our archives are growing. Now featuring past issues of The Cancer Letter from 1973-2014 and The Clinical Cancer Letter from 1977-2014, the database is becoming a fun place to explore. Go ahead, do a search for your mentors, and unearth lost quotes from times passed.

This new column in The Cancer Letter will feature the latest posts to the Cancer History Project by our growing list of contributors.

Notably, the NCI Library is uploading a treasure trove of primary source materials, AACR and ASCO have uploaded their annual reports, and MUSC Hollings Cancer Center and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital are posting stories, videos, and images.

The Cancer History Project is a free, web-based, collaborative resource intended to mark the 50th anniversary of the National Cancer Act and designed to continue in perpetuity. The objective is to assemble a robust collection of historical documents and make them freely available.

Quote of the week

“Society can’t afford two classes of citizens, one which can be used in research and one which can’t.”

Charles Gordon Zubrod

Black History Month

The Cancer History Project has invited contributors this month to highlight the achievements and contributions by Black oncologists, researchers, and advocates, as well as any content focusing on health disparities.



A growing collection of posts celebrating the impact on oncology by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color oncologists, researchers, and advocates will continue to be available under the tag “BIPOC Impact.”

Spotlight articles

Naional Cancer Act



Recent contributions

Primary Sources

Access to the Cancer History Project is open to the public at You can also follow us on Twitter at @CancerHistProj.

Is your institution a contributor to the Cancer History Project?

Eligible institutions include cancer centers, advocacy groups, professional societies, pharmaceutical companies, and key organizations in oncology.

To get involved with the project, please contact

Table of Contents


In the days leading up to the 2021 American Society of Clinical Oncology annual meeting, The Cancer Letter published a piece focused on Axel Grothey’s unethical sexual relationships with women he mentored while at Mayo Clinic. While this news was met by some as shocking, science tells us it is anything but.