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Herman Niels Bundesen
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Birth: Apr. 27, 1882
Berlin, Germany
Death: Aug. 25, 1960
Cook County
Illinois, USA

Dr. Herman N. Bundesen was born in 1882 and died in 1960. During his life he had a colorful career as a doctor, politician and author. In 1922 he was appointed Chicago Health Commissioner and immediately drew controversy by proposing that prophylactics be supplied in washrooms, drugstores and brothels and he wanted to set up city-funded free venereal disease clinics. He was scourged for these ideas by Illinois physicians. The Illinois Medical Journal called his ideas "revolting," "outrageous," and "an unlicensed exercise of power."

He also started an infant welfare program with emphasis on parental education. In this program, he was responsible for dramatic reduction in infant mortality in Chicago from 1921-1927. He was forced to resign as city health commissioner in 1927 because he refused to include Chicago mayor William "Big Bill" Thompson's political materials in the literature that was given to all parents through the infant welfare clinics.

When he was relieved of his commission, he ran for Cook County coroner and in 1930 he was reappointed as Chicago Health Commissioner after Thompson lost his mayoral re-election bid. By 1935, Chicago had the lowest infant mortality of any major city in the US.

Dr. Herman Bundesen never retired from the Board of Health. He died in 1960 having served for 34 years as the city's chief health officer. His legacy to the city remains intact in maternity hospital regulations, his voluminous studies of infant and maternal morbidity and mortality and his gift to the people, the classic, "Dr. Bundesen's Baby Book," a loving guide to well child care from a loving parent and physician. Dr. Bundesen was coroner at the time of the St Valentine massacre in Chicago.

Spouse: Rega M Russell
Children:
Rega Jane, Herman Jr, Russell, Laura Belle, Betty Ann, William 
 
Family links: 
 Spouse:
  Rega Russell Bundesen (1888 - 1971)*
 
 Children:
  Russell Bundesen (1912 - 1977)*
  Betty Ann Bundesen Phillips (1920 - 1996)*
 
*Calculated relationship
 
Burial:
Oak Woods Cemetery
Chicago
Cook County
Illinois, USA
 
Maintained by: Brian Bundesen
Originally Created by: geri
Record added: Mar 08, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 86411547
Herman Niels Bundesen
Added by: Brian Bundesen
 
Herman Niels Bundesen
Cemetery Photo
Added by: William Sweeney
 
 
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.


-Anonymous
 Added: Sep. 10, 2013
not forgotten.
- Brian Bundesen
 Added: May. 6, 2012

- geri
 Added: Mar. 8, 2012
 
 
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