Medicine in World War I Online Exhibit

In commemoration of the centennial of America’s entry into World War I in April 1917 through to the Armistice in November 1918, partner institutions contributing to the Medical Heritage Library have developed this collaborative online exhibit on medicine, surgery, and nursing in the war, with texts and images drawn from the digital corpus of the MHL. A significant amount of professional medical and surgical literature was produced even as the conflict continued to rage, and many personal narratives of physicians and nurses and histories of hospitals and army medical units were also published in the years immediately after the war.  A selection of this material is incorporated into the exhibit.

Medicine in World War I is divided into several broad categories: common diseases of the battlefield and camps; injuries and prosthetic devices; shell-shock and stress; military nursing; and the Spanish influenza epidemic.   There are also sections of bibliographic references with links to items in the Medical Heritage Library and a short list of other exhibits devoted to World War I and medicine.

Yale Medicine Goes to War

Melissa Grafe, current co-chair of the MHL Governance Committee and John R. Bumstead Librarian for Medical History at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, participated in two video presentations for the Yale Office of Public Affairs and Communications to commemorate the WWI centennial and the Medical Library’s exhibits on the war.

Yale Goes to War – Profiles in Medicine
and

Yale Goes to War – Mobile Hospital No. 39
 

Check out more MHL resources on World War I here.

Founding Gallaudet: Origins and Activism

~This post courtesy of Katie Healey and Caroline Lieffers, doctoral students in Yale’s Program for the History of Science and Medicine, with additions by Melissa Grafe, John R. Bumstead Librarian for Medical History, Head of the Medical Historical Library.

Title page of An Address in Behalf of the Columbia Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind by Edward M. Gallaudet, 1858.

Title page of An Address in Behalf of the Columbia Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb and the Blind by Edward M. Gallaudet, 1858.

In 1856, Amos Kendall, former postmaster general of the United States, became guardian to several deaf children. Concerned by their limited educational prospects, he donated two acres of his estate in the capital to establish the Columbia Institution for the Instruction of the Deaf and Dumb and Blind, to be run by Edward Miner Gallaudet. The blind students were soon moved to a separate school in Baltimore. Not satisfied with just secondary education, Kendall convinced Congress to grant the school the authority to award college degrees. In 1864, President Lincoln signed the college’s charter and President Grant signed the diplomas of its first graduates, establishing a tradition of presidential signatures that continues on its diplomas today. The college was renamed Gallaudet College in 1894, in honor of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, and became Gallaudet University in 1986. Continue reading

Yale Medicine Goes to War, 1917

A new exhibition from Medical Heritage Library partner Yale University entitled “Yale Medicine Goes to War, 1917″ commemorates America’s entry into the war at the local level. From mobilizing a “first of its kind” Mobile Hospital Unit, No. 39, to research on the effects of chemical warfare, this exhibition explores the many ways that Yale Medical School faculty, researchers, and students contributed to the war effort at home and abroad. The war diaries of Harvey Cushing, a pioneering neurosurgeon and Sterling Professor of Neurology at the Yale School of Medicine (1932–1939), are also on view, documenting the trials and trauma of war, particularly brain damage arising from shell fragments, shrapnel, and gunshot wounds. Continue reading

Deaf Education- Celebrating the legacy of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet

~This post courtesy Katie Healey and Caroline Lieffers, doctoral students in Yale’s Program for the History of Science and Medicine, with additions by Melissa Grafe, John R. Bumstead Librarian for Medical History, Head of the Medical Historical Library.

Portrait of Thomas H. Gallaudet (1787-1851). Gallaudet is shown here wearing glasses; his name in American Sign Language is the same as the sign for GLASSES.  From Henry Barnard, A discourse in commemoration of the life, character, and services of the Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet, LL. D. : delivered before the citizens of Hartford, Jan. 7th, 1852 : with an appendix containing history of deaf-mute instruction and institutions and other documents (Hartford: Brockett & Hutchison, 1852):

Portrait of Thomas H. Gallaudet (1787-1851). Gallaudet is shown here wearing glasses; his name in American Sign Language is the same as the sign for GLASSES. From Henry Barnard, A discourse in commemoration of the life, character, and services of the Rev. Thomas H. Gallaudet, LL. D. : delivered before the citizens of Hartford, Jan. 7th, 1852 : with an appendix containing history of deaf-mute instruction and institutions and other documents (Hartford: Brockett & Hutchison, 1852).

Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet, instrumental in the establishment of the first permanent school for deaf children in the United States, was born on December 10th, 1787. The popular account of the school’s founding states that in 1814, the young Reverend Gallaudet wondered why the daughter of his Hartford neighbor did not laugh or play with his own younger siblings. Nine-year-old Alice Cogswell was deaf, and her family and friends struggled to communicate with her. Gallaudet traced the letters H-A-T into the dirt with a stick and pointed to his hat. Alice immediately understood, and Gallaudet realized his life’s calling. After observing different methods of instruction and communication on a European voyage supported by Alice’s father, Dr. Mason Fitch Cogswell (BA Yale 1780), Gallaudet concluded that the French method of sign language was most effective. He recruited Deaf Frenchman Laurent Clerc to help establish the Connecticut Asylum for the Education and Instruction of Deaf and Dumb Persons, which opened in Hartford on April 15, 1817. Alice Cogswell was its first registered student. Now called the American School for the Deaf, this historic institution will celebrate its bicentennial in 2017.

Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet earned his bachelor’s (1805) and master’s (1808) degrees at Yale before graduating from Andover Theological Seminary in 1814.  Following his serendipitous encounter with Alice Cogswell, Gallaudet embarked on a year-long tour of European deaf schools. After a frustrating visit to the secretive Braidwood Academy in England, which taught speech and speechreading, he attended a demonstration of the French manual method—that is, sign language—in London. The National Institute of the Deaf in Paris invited Gallaudet to study French Sign Language and deaf instruction. Impressed with their curriculum, Gallaudet persuaded the esteemed instructor Laurent Clerc, a former student of the Institute, to teach deaf children in America.  A commemoration of Gallaudet’s life was printed in 1852 and is available through the Medical Heritage Library partner National Library of Medicine.

Laurent Clerc was born in La Balme, France in 1785. As he later recounted in his autobiography, he fell into a fire as a toddler, which left him deafened and scarred his cheek. His name is signed by brushing the index and middle fingers twice down the cheek. Clerc was an exceptional student and later an internationally known instructor at the National Institute of the Deaf in Paris. He left his students only reluctantly in 1816, when Gallaudet persuaded him to come help American children. During the fifty-two-day voyage across the Atlantic, Clerc and Gallaudet exchanged lessons in French Sign Language and English, and Clerc kept a diary to practice his English.  The Laurent Clerc papers (MS140)  are available for research at Yale University’s Manuscripts and Archives, and the Mason Fitch Cogswell papers (GEN MSS 920)   are at Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University.  Read an address on deaf education delivered by Clerc in 1818 through this online copy, provided by the Medical Heritage Library.

Title page from Laurent Clerc, An address, written by Mr. Clerc, and read by his request at a public examination of the pupils in the Connecticut Asylum : before the governour and both houses of the legislature, 28th May, 1818 (Hartford: Hudson & Co. Printers, 1818).

Title page from Laurent Clerc, An address, written by Mr. Clerc, and read by his request at a public examination of the pupils in the Connecticut Asylum : before the governour and both houses of the legislature, 28th May, 1818 (Hartford: Hudson & Co. Printers, 1818).

Gallaudet University in Washington D.C. was named Gallaudet College in 1894 in honor of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet.  Founded in 1864, Gallaudet University is the world’s only liberal arts college specifically for the Deaf and hard of hearing. It remains a center of both Deaf culture and Deaf rights activism.

For more on Gallaudet and Deaf education and culture, make sure to visit, the online exhibition Deaf: Cultures and Communication, 1600 to the Present.

Digital Highlights: Getting Ready for All Hallows

Halloween is only a week away, so in preparation, here are some of the texts we can offer on the ghostly and ghastly.

Did we miss out on your favorite? tell us in the comments!

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

Digital Highlights: Disquisitions on Ancient Medicine

What we might now call “history of medicine,” Richard Millar in 1811 thought of calling “medical archaeology.” His work in the field was inspired by “some singular traits” he felt he had discovered in ancient Greek medicine that he thought had parallels in other “rude, or semibarbarous, tribes…” and he wrote a book to prove it.

He starts at the beginning: “This will commence with the earliest trace of tradition or history,…” (29)

Flip through the pages below or follow this link to read Disquisitions in the history of medicine. Part first, Exhibiting a view of physic, as observed to flourish, during remote periods, in Europe, and the East.

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

Digital Highlights: Every day, in every way…

If you’re still working on those New Year’s resolutions, perhaps today’s title can help! Emile Coué’s “formula” might be considered one of the originals in the ‘self-help’ genre. His theory worked along the lines of auto-suggestion: you could talk yourself — or someone else — into the desired result by sheer repetition. The classic example was “Every day, in every way, I am getting better and better.” If nothing else, this phrase has a gentle rhyme to it that makes it a genuine 1920s earworm!

Flip through the pages below to get some inspiration for your self-transformation or follow this link to read The practice of autosuggestion by the method of Emile Coué (1922).

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