Digital Highlights: Pain Explained

According to the posthumous biography written by Edith Ellis (wife of sexologist Havelock Ellis), James Hinton was born in 1822, in Reading, England, outside of London. During his career as a physician, Hinton wrote widely on a variety of subjects, medical, physiological, and ethical.

Among his many publications was The Mystery of Pain: A Book for the Sorrowful in 1880. Hinton made an appeal for learning from unavoidable pain that was firmly rooted in a Christian understanding of the utility of suffering.

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

A/V from the Library

Press “play” above or follow this link to view Freedom to Advertise (1983).

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

Images from the Library

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From Frank E. Beddard’s Animal coloration : an account of the principal facts and theories relating to the colours and markings of animals (1892).

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

Digital Highlight: Tour an “ultramodern” hospital in the year 1900

QuarterCwithFHW_picOnly_009A Quarter of a Century with the Free Hospital for Women is a small picture book published in 1900, not long after the hospital had finished construction of its grand, new facility by a pond in Brookline, Massachusetts. The volume, held in the rare books collection at Harvard Medical School, Center for the History of Medicine, was recently digitized by the Brigham and Women’s Hospital Archives and made available online via the Medical Heritage Library. It will be of special interest to students of the history of institutional architecture, and to those interested in the history of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. The Free Hospital for Women is one of BWH’s organizational “grandmothers.”

QuarterCwithFHW_picOnly_002If you’ve ever wondered what a state-of-the-art hospital looked like a hundred plus years ago, flip through the photographs in this little book. See elegant arches and woodwork, gas lights, fireplaces, a grandfather clock, and Tiffany windows. There is a patient sitting room with a piano, a dining room with linen tablecloth and flowers, patient ward beds with gauzy white curtains, and a sitting porch with a view of Riverdale Park. All together the hospital seems more like a resort found in the Berkshires than anything resembling hospitals as we have come to know them in the 21st century.

 

QuarterCwithFHW_picOnly_011Amazingly, this beautiful facility was designed exclusively forpoor women. From 1875 to 1919 those without means were taken care of by the FHW at no charge. By 1919 the hospital had become so successful at its core mission of treating the diseases of women that patients of all economic levels were eager to be admitted there and the by-laws were amended to allow some who could pay.

In 1966 the Free Hospital for Women and the Boston Lying-in, a local maternity hospital, merged to form the Boston Hospital for Women. In 1975, the Boston Hospital for Women merged with the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital and the Robert B. Brigham Hospital. By 1980, all three hospitals had centralized operations and moved to one location in the Longwood area of Boston. The original FHW building was sold to a luxury condominium development company, but the enduring medical legacy of the Free Hospital for Women was reflected in the new name chosen for the combined institutions, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, a teaching affiliate of Harvard Medical School.

Our Reading List (#5)

Here’s a few of the things that are getting our reading attention this week…

What have you been reading lately?

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

Images from the Library

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From Frank E. Beddard’s Animal coloration : an account of the principal facts and theories relating to the colours and markings of animals (1892).

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

A/V from the Library

Click “play” above or follow this link to watch Cardiac output in man (1951).

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

Mount Sinai Archives Digitize “Journal”

An artistic illustration from an article by Ely Perlman, “Near Fatal Allergic Reactions to Bee and Wasp Stings: A Review and Report of Seven Cases,”  v. 22, 1955, p. 377.

An artistic illustration from an article by Ely Perlman, “Near Fatal Allergic Reactions to Bee and Wasp Stings: A Review and Report of Seven Cases,” v. 22, 1955, p. 377.

The Mount Sinai Archives of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai has been fortunate the last two years to receive funding from the Metropolitan New York Library Council (METRO) to have the Internet Archive (IA) digitize items from our collections and then link them to the Medical Heritage Library.  Of special note, as a part of our recent grant, we have digitized The Mount Sinai Journal of Medicine, initially known as the Journal of The Mount Sinai Hospital.  The time frame covered is from its founding in 1934 to 2010.

The Mount Sinai Journal was one of the many hospital publications that began in the 20th century.  It was first and foremost a clinical journal, with many case reports, summaries of Clinical Pathological Conferences, and articles on treatments and techniques. Through these volumes, one can see the evolution of medicine, with emphasis on those areas in which Mount Sinai has long been interested: cardiology, hematology, and gastroenterology. On these pages, the topics of sulfa drugs, penicillin, insulin, and the vitamins appear and then disappear as they are absorbed into everyday practice. After World War II, when Mount Sinai created a large Psychiatry department, newly independent from Neurology, articles on psychiatric topics begin to appear with regularity.

Sprinkled in with the clinical pieces are essays based on scientific lectures that occurred at Mount Sinai.  The Hospital had endowed lectures that brought notable clinicians and scientists to its halls each year.  These lectures were one of the reasons the Journal was created.  The staff felt that it was important that the institution share the knowledge that was given or created at Mount Sinai with the broader community.  As a result, in these pages you will find lectures by Nobel laureates such as Sir Henry Dale, Selman Waksman, Albert Einstein, and Peyton Rous, as well as other leading lights in medicine, including Macdonald Critchley, Hugh Cabot, and Homer Smith.

The Journal also attracted many foreign authors, who usually appeared in Festschrift issues honoring a Mount Sinai physician in his golden years. This speaks to the early 20th century practice of American doctors spending time abroad for post-graduate training.  This was a norm for Mount Sinai’s leading physicians, and over time, strong bonds grew with physicians and scientists in Europe, particularly Vienna and Germany.  These ties were particularly vital in the 1930s and 40s, as Mount Sinai doctors worked to bring colleagues to America to escape the Nazi threat.

Mount Sinai’s efforts to create a school of medicine in the 1960s are reflected in the Journal.  Articles on medical education appear, followed by essays about the School itself.  In October 1968, when the newly opened School held a dedication celebration, the speeches by four Nobel laureates – Beadle, Medawar, Crick and Pauling – were published in the Journal (1969, v.36).  The creation of the School is what necessitated the name change from the Journal of the Hospital, to the more general Mount Sinai Journal in 1970.  (You can read a history of the Journal by Niss and Aufses that was published in 2007, v. 74.)

Later issues of the Journal often revolved around specific themes and these were sometimes published as separate monographs.  Theme volumes included topics such as medical ethics, social work, or other areas in which the Medical Center was particularly interested.

Of course, the most covered topic of the Mount Sinai journals has always been Mount Sinai itself.  Here you find biographical pieces, reminiscences about earlier Mount Sinai days, and histories of various departments.  As such it is a wonderful resource for the Mount Sinai Archives, and all people who are interested in the history of American hospitals in the 20th century.

Images from the Library

This month, we continue our pursuit of color—

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From Frank E. Beddard’s Animal coloration : an account of the principal facts and theories relating to the colours and markings of animals (1892).

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

Digital Highlight: Bell’s Art

Sir Charles Bell (1774-1842) is probably best known for his work in the human nervous system. He was one of the first to work out the detailed ramifications of human nerves and their myriad connections and interconnections. His work proved to be foundational in the field of neuroscience and resulted in the naming of at least one condition after him, Bell’s Palsy, a form of temporary facial paralysis.

Bell also had interest in the arts and some practical experience as an artist. This gave him some advantage in terms of describing his anatomical dissections and presenting them both to other medical professionals and the public. He also wrote an early book on the application of knowledge learned from medical dissection to art: The anatomy and philosophy of expression as connected with the fine arts. This was first published in 1806 but republished at least once later in the century after Bell had achieved a position of prominence in Victorian London.

Flip through the pages of Bell’s work below or follow this link to read The anatomy and philosophy of expression as connected with the fine arts.

As always, for more from the Medical Heritage Library, please visit our full collection!

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