The Chicago Society for the History of Medicine and the Humanities is a constituent member of the Society of the American Association for the History of Medicine and was founded in 1909 to foster an interest in the history of medicine. In 2005 it became part of the Hektoen Institute and was renamed to emphasize a broadening of interest to other aspects of the humanities. At its inception the Society had some 200 members and included many illustrious personalities and pioneers of American medicine.

The Society remains active, sponsoring meetings and lectures on a variety of interesting subjects, some related to the history of medicine in Chicago and others exploring the interface between medicine and the humanities. Each lecture is preceded by a reception, allowing the members to exchange ideas and engage in lively discussion. The final meeting of each year is dedicated to the memory of Doctor Morris Fishbein, the Society’s past president and an influential physician and editor of modern American Medicine. The Fishbein lectures have been made possible by the generous support of the family of the late Barbara Fishbein Friedell.