32 Remembering Clarence Weiant
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Dynamic Chiropractic – September 4, 2000, Vol. 18, Issue 19

Remembering Clarence Weiant

By Joseph Keating Jr., PhD
He was one of the extraordinary individuals in the history of chiropractic: chemist, chiropractor, linguist, educator, anthropologist, philosopher, historian, prolific writer and author, inventor, entrepreneur, and more. A genuine virtuoso.

Clarence Woolsey Weiant, D.C., Ph.C., Ph.D. (1897-1986) was born and raised along the lower Hudson River and studied at Renselaer Polytechnic Institute in upstate New York before commencing his studies at the Palmer School of Chiropractic (PSC), from which he graduated in 1921. He pioneered chiropractic in Mexico, became a co-owner of and teacher at the Texas Chiropractic College and later the Eastern Chiropractic Institute (ECI) in New York (Keating, 1996). He was the first research director for the National Chiropractic Association (Keating et al., 1995) and the Chiropractic Research Foundation (today's Foundation for Chiropractic Education & Research) and the first person to earn a degree (B.S.) in anthropology from Columbia University (in 1937. Six years later took his Ph.D. at the same school. He earned an international reputation for his investigations of ancient Mexican cultures as an archeologist with the National Geographic Society and the Smithsonian Institute (Wardwell, 1994). In 1944, Weiant was one of the architects (along with John J. Nugent, D.C. and Craig M. Kightlinger, M.A., D.C.) of one of the academically strongest educational institutions in the profession, the non-profit Chiropractic Institute of New York (CINY; now defunct).

A private vitalist by his own admission (Weiant, 1942), he publicly proclaimed the irreconcilability of vitalism with the science of chiropractic which he envisioned and set in motion. In the middle years of the profession, Clarence Weiant was one of chiro-practic's most important and eloquent spokesmen (e.g., Verner & Weiant, 1942; Weiant, 1945, 1958, 1981; Weiant & DeMey, 1940; Weiant & Goldschmidt, 1959).


Keating JC. Craig M. Kightlinger, M.A., D.C. and the Eastern Chiropractic Institute, 1916-1944. Journal of Chiropractic Humanities 1996: 6: 26-44

Keating JC, Green BN, Johnson CD. "Research" and "science" in the first half of the chiropractic century. Journal of Manipulative & Physiological Therapeutics 1995 (July/Aug); 18(6): 357-78

Verner JR, Weiant CW. The chiropractor looks at infection: a supplement to "Rational Bacteriology." Webster City IA: Public Health Council of the National Chiropractic Association, 1942 (pamphlet)

Wardwell, Walter I. The 1984 Lee-Homewood Award: Clarence W. Weiant. Chiropractic History 1984;4:62-5.

Weiant, Clarence W. Mechanist-vitalist: a controversy chiropractic cannot afford. National Chiropractic Journal 1942 (Oct); 11(10): 8, 36

Weiant, Clarence W. The case for chiropractic in the literature of medicine. New York: New York State Chiropractic Society, 1945

Weiant, Clarence W. A doctor of chiropractic rebuts "quackery" charge by medical society. Journal of the National Chiropractic Association 1958 (June); 28(6): 23

Weiant, Clarence W. Chiropractic philosophy: the misnomer that plagues the profession. Archives of the Chiropractic California Association 1981; 5(1): 15-22

Weiant CW, DeMey F. Chiropractic in the dictionaries and encyclopedias (Conclusion). Eastern Toggle 1940 (Mar); 1(3): 7, 11-2

Weiant, Clarence W, Goldschmidt, Sol. Medicine and chiropractic. Third Edition. New York: the authors, 1959

If your interest in chirohistory has been stimulated, then consider joining the Association for the History of Chiropractic (AHC). Founded at Spears Hospital in Denver in 1980, the AHC is a non-profit, membership organization whose goal is the discovery, dissemination and preservation of the saga of chiropractic. The AHC held its first annual Conference on Chiropractic History at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, D.C. in 1980, and has held similar conferences each year since at various chiropractic colleges. The AHC's 2001 Conference on Chiropractic History will be held at Palmer College of Chiropractic West, during March 30-April 1, 2001. Details about the upcoming conference can be obtained by contacting the AHC's executive director, Ms. Alana Callender.

The AHC publishes a scholarly journal, Chiropractic History, in which chiropractors and interested observers contribute their expertise to telling and interpreting the rich lore of the profession. The journal, which is indexed in the National Library of Medicine's Histline, is published twice per year. Chiropractic History is distributed to all members of the AHC as a membership benefit. Membership in the AHC can be obtained by sending your name, address and check for $50 ($20/year for students) to the AHC's executive director:

If you'd like to encourage historical scholarship and preservation within the chiropractic profession, then consider making a donation, large or small, to the historical fund of the National Institute of Chiropractic Research (NICR). The NICR is a non-profit organization committed to conducting and supporting various types of research; in most cases, contributions are tax-deductible. The NICR historical fund supports the work of chiropractic historians and of centers for the preservation of historical documents. Preparation of this paper was supported by the NICR. Please make your check payable to:

Alana Callender, MS, Executive Director,
Association for the History of Chiropractic
1000 Brady Street, Davenport IA 52803 USA
Telephone: (319) 884-5404

website: www.chirohistory.org

Historical Fund
National Institute of Chiropractic Research
3714 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix AZ 85018 USA

Joseph Keating Jr., PhD.
La Habra, California

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