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Bernard G. Sarnat papers, 1932-2010 LSC.1793
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Restrictions on Access
  • Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
  • Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements
  • UCLA Catalog Record ID
  • Preferred Citation
  • Provenance/Source of Acquisition
  • Processing Information
  • Biography/History
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement

  • Title: Bernard G. Sarnat papers
    Identifier/Call Number: LSC.1793
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 5.2 linear feet (13 document boxes)
    Date (inclusive): 1932-2010
    Abstract: Bernard G. Sarnat was a UCLA professor in both the School of Dentistry and the School of Medicine, the chief of surgery at Cedars-Sinai, and a widely-published scientific researcher. Items in the collection include correspondence, copies of publications, surgery photos, lecture notes and recorded lectures, an early manuscript of his published book, course materials, and administrative documents from his professorship at UCLA.
    Language of Materials: Materials are in English.
    Physical Location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Creator: Sarnat, Bernard G.

    Restrictions on Access

    Open for research. STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.
    Series 1 is open for research. Series 2 is restricted.

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

    Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

    CD, DVD, and VHS materials are present and may need to be digitized prior to use or require special equipment for viewing.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 7576421 

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Bernard G. Sarnat Papers (Collection 1793). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Materials from this collection were donated by Bernard Sarnat in 2007, 2009, 2010 and 2011.

    Processing Information

    Preliminary processing by Charlotte Brown; processed by Mary Priest in 2015 in the Center for Primary Research and Training (CFPRT)  with assistance from Jillian Cuellar. Processing of this collection was generously supported by the Constantine and Perina Panunzio Endowment for University Archives.


    Bernard G. Sarnat was the youngest of three children, born in Chicago, Illinois on September 1, 1912 to Russian immigrant parents. He excelled in his studies from a young age, graduating high school with honors and gaining early admission to the University of Chicago. It was there that Sarnat studied medicine and earned his degree in 1936. Throughout high school and into college, Sarnat also worked roughly 30 hours per week at the family drugstore which his father owned. Shortly after obtaining his medical degree, Sarnat applied to the University of Illinois and began dental school. While enrolled in dental school, Sarnat was concurrently enrolled in a master’s program for science, he was an assistant professor in histology, and was actively engaged in research. After obtaining his M.S. and D.D.S in 1940, Sarnat spent a year in a general surgery residency followed by his appointment to full professorship and the head of the Oral and Plastic Surgery department at Washington University School of Medicine. Sarnat opened his own private practice and continued to conducted research through the university until his move to California in 1955.
    Sarnat relocated to Beverly Hills and established a successful plastic surgery private practice. He also worked in conjunction with the Cedars-Sinai plastic surgery for over 20 years, holding positions as both the chief of surgery and a researcher. In 1967 Sarnat was appointed as an adjunct professor at the newly founded UCLA School of Dentistry. By 1974, Sarnat had gained a second appointment as a professor in UCLA School of Medicine’s plastic surgery division. During this time, Sarnat also established the internationally recognized Bernard G. Sarnat International Lectureship in Bone Biology and the Plastic Surgery Research Council.
    One of Sarnat’s major research contributions includes the use of a stain known as alizarin red S to document bone and teeth growth. Sarnat also conducted extensive research on biological causes for facial deformities and how these factors affected surgery. Prior to his retirement in 1991, Sarnat had published over 200 papers and books, had lectured extensively both domestically and internationally, and had received dozens of prestigious awards for excellence in research. His research, publishing, and lectureship continued even after his retirement. Sixty years of research was published in his 2010 book Craniofacial Biology and Craniofacial Surgery. A biography of this life, Bernard G. Sarnat: 20th Century Plastic Surgeon and Biological Scientist, was published in 2008. Bernard Sarnat died at age 99 on October 21, 2011.

    Scope and Content

    Items in this collection, created between 1932 and 2010, serve to document the professional career of scientist, professor, and plastic surgeon Bernard G. Sarnat. The material focuses largely on Sarnat’s extensive research and publications. Items in the collection include correspondence, photos of plastic surgery photos, copies of publications, lecture notes and recorded lectures, an early manuscript of his published book, course materials, and administrative documents from his professorship at UCLA. Also included in the collection are drafts of Sarnat’s biography with Sarnat’s marginal annotations.

    Organization and Arrangement

    This collection has been arranged in the following series:
    • Series 1: Professional Materials, 1940-2010
    • Series 2: Plastic Surgery Photos and Slides, 1932-2002
    Each series is arranged alphabetically by subject.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Sarnat, Bernard G. (Bernard George), 1912- -- Archives
    Plastic surgeons--Archives.
    Surgery, Plastic
    University of California, Los Angeles. School of Medicine--Faculty--Archives