Phototherapy, breakfast cereal and the Battle Creek Sanitarium

Phototherapy Department at the Battle Creek Sanitarium

Phototherapy Department at the Battle Creek Sanitarium, courtesy Willard Library

The Willard Library has an amazing collection of photos from the Battle Creek’s history. Prominent among these are of course photos from the Battle Creek Sanitarium. The Battle Creek Sanitarium Years from the Battle Creek Federal Center is a good companion article and explains:

Dr. John Harvey Kellogg (1852-1943) took charge of the Institute for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in 1876 and changed the name to the Battle Creek Sanitarium. He came up with the word “sanitarium” to reflect his idea of a sanitary retreat for health restoration and training (“a place where people learn to stay well”) rather than “sanitorium,” which meant a hospital for invalids or for treatment of tuberculosis. The San, as the place was familiarly known, prospered under Dr. Kellogg’s direction…

Dr. Kellogg’s medical treatment embraced all branches of medicine, including surgery, but with emphasis on fresh air, sunshine, exercise, rest and diet. The SDA dietary practices eliminated meats, condiments, spices, alcohol, chocolate, coffee and tea. Nutritious substitutes were created for “harmful” foods. Dr. Kellogg invented some 80 grain and nut products.

Somewhere amidst all of this, flaked cereal was invented and John’s brother William Keith Kellogg and C.W. Post began a breakfast bowl battle that basically created the breakfast cereal industry. There’s much more at the link above (including some more great photos) and you can also see Wikipedia’s entry on the Battle Creek Sanitarium, the entry on John Harvey Kellogg from the Battle Creek Historical Society and Mr. Breakfast’s Early Days of Breakfast Cereal.

2 thoughts on “Phototherapy, breakfast cereal and the Battle Creek Sanitarium

  1. I was in attendance Sept. 5, 1966 when Preident Johnson spoke at the 100th anniversary celebration of the Battle Creek Sanitarium. I would like to donate a framed photograph of President Johnson, along with the invitation I received, my press badge, and autograph of President Johnson. Please advise to whom I should write to about my donation.


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