Searching the PAHx Website & Online Catalog

Did you know that our website is made up of two different websites?

The PA History Society has our main webpage (, which has information on us, the PA profession, fun history tidbits like our trivia page and timelines, and featured items from our archival collections.

We also have an Online Catalog called PastPerfect ( Think of it like the electronic card catalog at your local library. Where our main website has only our featured content due to space constraints, the PastPerfect Catalog has a record for the entirety of our collections!

Most of our webpages on our website have links to PastPerfect’s complete catalog so you can easily search each section if you need more than the featured content. Each section also has a “How to Search Guide” for you to better tailor your keywords and searches to get the results you need. Main menu

Let’s take a closer look at our main website!

Our main menu is in the left-hand corner of the homepage.

There are Five Sections to the main menu: About, Info, History, Support, and Contact

Some Key Features of “About”

Who Are We? – Learn more about the organization, our Board of Trustees, and staff

Our Projects – Learn about the interesting, educational projects that PAHx has done since its inception

Some Key Features of “Info”

Helpful Links – Links to other health and historical organizations that have information and holdings dealing with the history of medicine and physician assistants.Info

First PA State Leg. – Learn the year that each state first passed PA legislation!

National Conference Sites – The year and location of each AAPA and PAEA annual meeting

Our Associates & Friends – A list of PA programs, PA caucuses, AAPA state chapters, and individuals that have supported the PAHx with generous donations.

PA Glossary – Glossary of PA terms and organizations

PAHx Newsletter – The PAHx’s quarterly newsletter, “Historical Happenings”!

Past Presidents – The names and years of service for the previous presidents of AAPA, PAEA, NCCPA, ARC-PA, PAHx, and the nccPA Health Foundation.

Search Options – Helpful tips and refreshers in how to search both our main website and our online database, PastPerfect. Also includes a direct link to the PastPerfect Online Database

Key Features of “History”

Archival Research – A listing of all the collections in our archives and their contents.

Biographies – Bios of notable PAs, doctors, nurses, and others who have made an impact on the PA profession.History

Collection & Exhibits – The PAHx’s online collections (PA program patches, PA pins, etc.) and in-depth articles on PA history.

First Class Photos – Online collection of photographs of the first graduating classes of our Associate PA Programs.

Oral Histories – Our collection of video and audio recorded interviews with PAs and others who  have made PA history! Please note that the oral histories on the main webpage are only those that we are featuring. To view and search our FULL oral history interview collection, please check our PastPerfect Online Database.

PA History Trivia – Test your knowledge of PA history!

PA Timeline – An illustrated history of the PA profession.

Int’l PA Timeline – A timeline of how the PA profession is spreading internationally.

Photos – The PAHx’s photograph collections. Note that the photograph collections on the main website are only the collections that we are featuring. For all our photo, please visit the “photograph” section of our PastPerfect Online Database.

Research Library – Search through the library materials of the PAHx and browse our collection of online articles and documents.

Videos – The PAHx’s collection of videos. Note that this is only our featured videos. To see a full listing of videos in the PAHx’s collection, please view the “Video” section of our PastPerfect Online Database.


Learn more about how to support the PAHx and our projects! Also browse through our educational materials that are available for a tax-deductible donation.


Drop the friendly staff of PAHx a line with your comments and suggestions!

On How to Searchsearch box.JPG

To search our main page (which is mostly our featured content) please use the orange rectangle in the bottom right corner of the website. To better your search results, please put keywords and terms within quotations marks if applicable.

Each sub-section of our “History” section (Archival Research, Oral Histories, Photos, Research Library, and Videos) has a link to our PastPerfect Online Database. Each sub-section also has a useful “How to Search” document to better help you find what best meets your research needs.

To search across all categories of PastPerfect, please click on the PastPerfect link under “Search Options” in the Info section.

Click on “Keyword Search” in the top menu bar if you wish to search only selected keywords across all categories of our collections. You may also click on “Advanced Search” to further refine your search results.Circled PP Top Menu

In Advanced Search you may click which categories to search (OAdv Searchbjects = Museum Pieces, Archives = Archival Collections and Oral Histories, Photos, and Library = journals, articles, books, etc.). You may also search by person, group (such as “Veterans Caucus” or “Project Access”), or topic (ex, “Conventions”) by inputting these keywords in the “Search Terms/Subjects” box. You may search for authors by entering their names in the “Creator” box. You may search for people using the “People” box, but please note that you must search in last name, first name format. You can also search by date in the “Date” box.

You may also search using the “Collection” box if you wish to look up “Oral History Collection”, “Digital Moving Image Collection”, or if you know the name of the archival collection you are looking for.

As always, if you need some extra help or searching tips, don’t hesitate to contact PAHx staff!


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