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Historical News

Jun 1, 2020

Written by Alicia Petersen, PhD student, History of Science and Medicine Program (HSHM) Herbaria, collections of dried plant specimens that were (usually) adhered to sheets of paper, were very popular in 18th-century Europe. From professional botanists exploring the Americas to amateur scientists roaming the fields near their homes, many used herbaria to store preserved plants for later study. In order to better understand how early moderns “did” science, I decided to create my own herbarium (... Read More

Mar 4, 2020

Thirty years ago, the landmark Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) became law, prohibiting discrimination against people with disabilities in all areas of public life, including employment, schools, transportation, and public spaces.  This exhibition explores disability and disability activism leading up to the passage of the ADA in July 1990.  At a local level, the exhibition discusses disability activism at Yale today, focusing on multiple groups advocating for change across Yale's system... Read More

Feb 10, 2020

Curated by Katherine Isham The Medical Historical Library announces a new exhibition in our reading room: “The Enduring Appeal of ‘The Doctor’” featuring recent gifts from medical historian Bert Hansen, Ph.D. “The Doctor,” painted by Sir Luke Fildes in 1891, has been a popular and influential image in the history of medicine for more than a century. The painting of a Victorian doctor attending a sick child in a poor workman’s cottage held great appeal for the general public, who responded to... Read More

Jan 17, 2020

The Medical Historical Library announces the availability of Ms Coll 67 The Bert Hansen Collection of Medicine and Public Health in Popular Graphic Art, which includes over 1200 images and items produced between 1850 and 2010 with additional reference materials. The collection is a gift of historian Bert Hansen, Ph.D., whose goal was to document the visual record of medical practice and research and public health in America. Over a period of thirty years, Hansen selected materials produced for... Read More

Jan 8, 2020

The Cushing/Whitney Medical Library is pleased to announce that parts of our incunable collection are now available online! The effort to digitize these incunables and make them freely available worldwide was generously funded by the Arcadia Fund. The Medical Historical Library, part of the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, contains over 300 medical and scientific incunabula, which are books, broadsides, and pamphlets printed before 1501. These incredibly rare incunables represent the earliest... Read More

Dec 11, 2019

By Michelle Peralta, Resident Archivist for Yale Special Collections Yale Class of 1974 Alumna Throughout the 2019-2020 academic year, Yale University is celebrating fifty years of co-education with many events and exhibitions that demonstrate the magnitude of contributions of Yale’s women graduates in all areas of life, including politics, sports, academia, and medicine. Thus, it feels particularly fitting that the latest archival collection available at the Medical Historical Library, Ms... Read More

Nov 7, 2019

NEW EXHIBITION Plastic Surgery at Yale: Surgical Expertise, Innovation, and History On view in the Cushing Rotunda from October 30th 2019 - February 24th, 2020   Surgical attempts to reconstruct the human body after injury or illness have long been at the forefront of medical innovation. The expansive field of plastic surgery emerged over centuries, now including reconstruction and cosmetics and aesthetic surgery.   In this exhibition, evolving techniques and procedures dating... Read More

Sep 3, 2019

Exhibition curated by Terry Dagradi and Deborah Streahle The Medical Library celebrates the first decade of the Cushing Center with a special exhibition leading up the its anniversary. Throughout his career as a groundbreaking neurosurgeon, Dr. Cushing took detailed notes on what patients told him about their serious, often mysterious ailments. He had patients sit for diagnostic photos and sketches, and he followed up with them for years after treating them. With precision, he removed and... Read More

Aug 30, 2019

The Medical Historical Library is pleased to announce the addition of a new collection to our archives: The Hall-Benedict Drug Company Logbooks and Ledgers (Ms Coll 66), a collection of seventy-five volumes and six boxes, that documents the history of one of the oldest independent drug stores in Connecticut. The collection includes bound prescription logbooks and bound and loose financial ledgers from the Hall-Benedict Drug Company, which was in operation from 1909 to 1998 in the East Rock... Read More

Aug 19, 2019

Grant Wood’s American Gothic Repurposed and Several Anti-Smoking Acquisitions on view now at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library. “American Gothic” is one of the best known works by an American artist. Iowa native Grant Wood was inspired by the small town Iowan home in Gothic Revival style and asked his sister and his dentist to pose for the painting as father and daughter residents of the well kept property.   To many viewers of “American Gothic” the scene was, and is, interpreted as a... Read More

Jun 12, 2019

    Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine (YJBM) is celebrating 90 years of continuous publication. Founded in 1928 by Milton C. Winternitz, YJBM is the oldest medical student-run publication still in production and has grown to be a peer-reviewed, internationally ranked journal aimed at featuring outstanding research in all areas of biology and medicine.   Explore this exhibition featuring the accomplishments and challenges of student editorship and the vivid history of YJBM... Read More

Mar 1, 2019

The Cushing/Whitney Medical Library is pleased to announce that our medieval and Renaissance manuscript collection is now online!  The effort to digitize the manuscripts and make them freely available worldwide was generously funded by the Arcadia Fund. The manuscripts contain early medical and scientific knowledge on a variety of topics, including surgery, gynecology, medicine, herbs and remedies, anatomy, healthful living, astronomy, and mathematics.  They are handwritten in Latin, Italian,... Read More

Feb 27, 2019

Our first 2018-19 Ferenc Gyorgyey fellow, Jaipreet Virdi, Ph.D., shares an aspect of her research on disability technology through photographs and postcards, with little help from Twitter… Picturing Disability Technology Written by Jaipreet Virdi* In a 2014 article, historian Katherine Ott expressed: “Both the artifacts owned and used by people with disabilities and those that are used upon them or that are encountered in life create possibilities, impose limits, assert political and... Read More

Nov 12, 2018

Simbonis Fellowship in Bioinformatics at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library Yale University, New Haven, CT   Fixed Duration Position: 18 months from date of hire; non-renewable Yale University offers an exciting opportunity for achievement and growth in New Haven, Connecticut. Conveniently located between Boston and New York, New Haven is the creative capital of Connecticut with cultural resources that include major art museums, theaters and music. New Haven is also a biotech and research hub... Read More

Aug 6, 2018

We are delighted to share a report on the work of our first Simbonis intern, Emma Brennan-Wydra, who joined the staff in the Medical Historical Library at the end of May 2018.  Emma offered the following glimpses into her life and experiences as our intern: I graduated from Yale College in 2015 with a double major in Chemistry and Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, focusing on the multiple intersections of science, education, gender, bodies, and power. During my time at Yale, I also played... Read More

Jul 5, 2018

Want to learn more about the smart and dedicated women who supported the work of our namesake, Harvey Cushing?  Explore our newest exhibition, curated by Emma Brennan-Wydra, Stanley Simbonis Intern for the Medical Library, and now on view in the Cushing Center! Throughout his career, Dr. Harvey Cushing employed a team of women who assisted him as secretaries, typists, medical artists, operative photographers, laboratory technicians, and more.  Cushing's female associates referred to themselves... Read More

May 21, 2018

    Easy Victims to the Dreaded European Visitor: Using Digital Humanities Tools and Archival Documents from Yale University and New Haven to Explore Local Knowledge during a Global Influenza Epidemic, 1889-1890   Wednesday, May 30th, 2018 11 a.m.   Historical Library, Cushing/Whitney Medical Library 333 Cedar Street, New Haven   Please join us for a talk that combines digital humanities and deep research on a global influenza epidemic, drawn from Yale’s libraries and... Read More

Mar 22, 2018

Dermatology Grand Rounds in the Historical Library Wednesday, April 4, 2018 Viewing  8:00 - 9:00 am      Discussion  9:00 - 10:15 am. Jean Bolognia, M.D., and Irwin Braverman, M.D., will present nine patients of Dr. Peter Parker (YC 1831, YMS 1834) as portrayed in the Historical Library’s paintings by Lam Qua.   A medical missionary, Parker founded a hospital in Canton and commissioned portraits (1836-1855) of over one hundred patients, many of whom had large tumors. In 1888, he bequeathed his... Read More

Feb 8, 2018

(by Deborah Streahle, doctoral student in the Program in the History of Medicine and Science) The Medical Historical Library is pleased to announce a gift of the papers of 19th century physician, obstetrician, and gynecologist Dr. James Henry Etheridge.  The papers are a donation from the estate of Margaret Grant Young, 2017. Dr. Etheridge (1844-1899) was a distinguished Chicago physician in the late 19th-century. He graduated from Rush Medical College in 1869 and, after a brief sojourn in... Read More

Feb 7, 2018

    Highlighting New Acquisitions in the Medical Historical Library January 29th-March 28th, 2018 The Medical Historical Library expands its collections through the careful acquisition of new books, prints, posters, ephemera and other objects.  Spanning assorted topics, including anatomy, herbs and plants, plague and other diseases, protest against medicine and social justice, HIV/AIDS patients, Planned Parenthood, and more, this exhibition highlights just a few of the new pieces recently... Read More

Jan 30, 2018

(by Melissa Grafe) Yale University’s Medical Historical Library is pleased to announce the acquisition of an important collection of ephemera, photographs, and rare books related to disability, the Robert Bogdan Disability Collection. Professor Robert Bogdan compiled an archive guided by the ideas of the field of Disability Studies, an approach that focuses on “disability” as a social, cultural, and political phenomenon. Bogdan, an early pioneer in that field, has taught courses related to it... Read More

Nov 3, 2017

Our application servers are scheduled to be moved to the ITS datacenter at West Campus early Monday (November 6th). As a result, there will be an interruption of service for the following applications:         Greenstone Digitized Collections* (Offline Monday morning) E-Journals and E-Books Database (Offline Monday morning)   Cushing Center Database (Offline after 5pm Friday the 3rd)     We expect the move to be completed by noon on Monday. *Many of the digital collections are... Read More

Sep 25, 2017

Join us on October 17th, 12:00 - 1:00 pm in the Medical Historical Library (Sterling Hall of Medicine, L-wing, 333 Cedar Street) for a lunchtime workshop entitled, "The Time is Now! The Many Faces of Disability." The talk will be led by Dr. Cindy Miller, MD, Department of Radiology. Dr. Miller's workshop will focus on the relationship between disability and diversity, the definition of disability, the diversity within disability, and disability as a "process." Additionally, the discussion will... Read More

Sep 20, 2017

“The Soviet government is waging a relentless battle against venereal diseases…Participation in this battle is everyone’s duty….” In commemoration of the centennial of the Russian Revolution, the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library joins the Yale University Libraries--Beinecke, CSSI, Gilmore Music Library, Haas Arts Library, and Manuscripts and Archives in sharing works from our collections pertaining to this era and event.  Join us to view "A Revolutionary Public Health Campaign," 4 p.m. to 6 p.m... Read More

May 18, 2017

  New Lives for Old Specimens May 25th-November 3rd, 2017 Cushing Rotunda, Cushing/Whitney Medical Library   Is there any use for old anatomy and pathology specimens, usually consigned to dusty basements for storage or destroyed after a number of years?   In our new exhibition “New Lives for Old Specimens,” the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library features current medical research using historical specimens from Yale’s collections.  Multiple curators drawn from inside... Read More

Apr 21, 2017

Curated by David K. Dupee and Melinda Wang, M.D. Candidates, Class of 2020, Yale School of Medicine, this new exhibit in the hallway, is a collaboration of the Program for Humanities in Medicine and the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library. By virtue of its ubiquity, we all practice moral judgment at some degree long before developing an aptitude for clinical evaluation. Ideas of how a "good" person should look and act, reside within us and subtly impact the way that we perceive those around us.... Read More

Mar 2, 2017

Friday, April 7 at 12:00 pm, Historical Library Cushing/Whitney Medical Library Come to the Medical Historical Library for a live musical revue of selections from our exhibit “Yale Medicine Goes to War, 1917.” Bring your lunches and enjoy the medically themed ballads and marches inspired by the nation’s entrance into World War I. Songs will be performed by library and development staff members, and doctors from the Medical School. Join us!    

Jan 24, 2017

Taylor & Francis Online will be undergoing routine database maintenance on Wednesday, January 26th from 6 PM to 10 PM EST. During this 4-hour window Taylor & Francis Online will not be available; please use the eLibrary to see if the content you need is available via another source.

Jan 24, 2017

Learn the latest from the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library by following us on Facebook. Get behind-the-scenes looks at our historical collections, invitations to our wide array of classes, information about our resources and services, and more! 

Jan 24, 2017

Calling all singers! The Medical Library is seeking musicians to participate in a Musical Revue of works from our medically themed sheet music collection relating to WWI. Solo opportunities for all voice parts are available. Please contact Katie Hart if you are interested in participating: katherine.hart@yale.edu or 203-785-5352

Jan 18, 2017

Curated by Susan Wheeler, this small exhibit reminds us of the impact of the war on non-combatants and the importance of attending to the emotional needs of soldiers.  The selections advertise relief organizations and services soliciting funds and materials.  World War l posters are well known for their beauty and effectiveness. These posters helped to raise over a hundred million dollars in relief funds and ten million library books.  This exhibition is on view in the hallway from January 25... Read More

Jan 18, 2017

When America entered the First World War in April 1917, Yale University, including the Medical School, leapt into action.  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... Read More

Jan 12, 2017

Borrow Direct is down.  Library staff are working with the vendor to resolve the outage. In the interim, place an interlibrary loan request if you need material not held by Yale. 

Oct 24, 2016

(by Susan Wheeler) Mary (and Sue) from Cushing/Whitney Medical Library on Vimeo. Sue Coe came to Yale for the opening of “The AIDS Suite, HIV-Positive Women in Prison and other works by artist/activist Sue Coe” on September 15 and gave an impromptu discussion of her drawings on display at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library.  The exhibit, on view through January 18, introduces seven large drawings by Sue Coe selected from among thirteen drawings acquired by the Cushing/Whitney Medical... Read More

Sep 12, 2016

A drawing from "'The AIDS Suite,' HIV-Positive Women in Prison and Other Works by Artist/Activist Sue Coe" YaleNews recently profiled the Library's upcoming exhibition of “’The AIDS Suite,’ HIV-Positive Women in Prison and Other Works by Artist/Activist Sue Coe." As YaleNews' Mike Cummings reports, "The exhibit... features 27 drawings and prints by Coe, whose work has been published in The New York Times, The New Yorker, and Rolling Stone": Coe’s artwork is represented in the collections of... Read More

Jul 26, 2016

(by Erin Travers*) Drawing after Jacob van der Gracht's Third Figure, Cushing Manuscript, Yale University. Early-18th century. Red and Black Chalk On the back of a letter from the antiquarian and bookseller Menno Hertzberger, dated 29 March 1927, Harvey Cushing recorded his observations concerning a manuscript of Jacob van der Gracht’s printed drawing book, the Anatomy of the outer parts of the human body (The Hague, 1634; Rotterdam, 1660), which had been sent to Boston from Amsterdam. This... Read More

Jun 24, 2016

We enjoyed the YaleNews' story on the Library this week in commemoration of our 75th anniversary.  In addition to outlining the history of the Library's founding, author Mike Cummings interviewed faculty members and Library Director John Gallagher to highlight some of our current priorities and activities: “We see ourselves as partners in research,” Gallagher said, adding that the library not only assists researchers in accessing information and data but also in advising them on how to manage... Read More

Jun 20, 2016

(by Melissa Grafe and Charlotte Abney Solomon)   In celebration of Harvey Cushing's birthday on April 8th and the Medical Library’s 75th Anniversary, the Medical Historical Library invited all Instagram users visiting the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library at Yale to share their best photos taken within our space. Contestants used the hashtag #HappyBirthdayHarvey and tagged our account, @yalemedhistlib. On display are the winners of the Instagram Challenge.   Brainiest... Read More

Jun 17, 2016

By Terry Dagradi, Cushing Center Coordinator Theresa Barden, a 9th grade student at Coventry High School, Rhode Island, visited the Cushing Center last year with her sister Mary Barden, a 4th year Yale medical student, and in her words "was amazed." Theresa decided to participate in this year’s National History Day, with the theme "Exploration, Encounter, and Exchange,” and did her project on Dr. Harvey Cushing.  As the coordinator of the Cushing Center, I was happy to accept her request for an... Read More

Jun 15, 2016

The Medical Historical Library, Cushing/Whitney Medical Library, is pleased to announce the following recipients of the Ferenc Gyorgyey Research Travel Award for 2016-2017: Whitney Wood, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Department of History, Classics and Archaeology, Birbeck, University of London A New Way to Birth?  Herbert Thoms and the International Natural Childbirth Movement Whitney Wood’s research explores the natural childbirth movement in Canada.  As part of this research, Wood will be... Read More

Jun 9, 2016

On June 3, 2016 the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library hosted a talk titled "Harvey Cushing and John Fulton: Two Founders Bonded By Science, Medicine, And Books."  The focus of this event was a conversation between Drs. Dennis D. Spencer and Gordon M. Shepherd, moderated by Cynthia Tsay, YSM ’18. The panel spoke about the personal and professional relationship of these men, and touched upon the founding of the Yale Medical Library and how they worked together to make it a reality.  You can now... Read More

May 10, 2016

The Cushing/Whitney Medical Library is delighted to announce the appointment of our new director, John Gallagher. John joined the staff of the Yale Library in 1999 as a library services assistant in the Library Shelving Facility. He moved to the Medical Library in 2000 where he took the position of evening & weekend circulation supervisor, and was quickly promoted to the head of the circulation department. After completion of his Masters of Library Science in 2004, John was promoted again... Read More

May 10, 2016

The spring 2016 issue of Nota Bene: News from the Yale Library is now available online. This issue has a particular focus on the work of the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library as it marks its 75th anniversary this year.  In addition to telling the story of the Medical Library, the issue profiles some of the current projects, resources, collections, and exhibits that are making an impact at Yale and in the medical community worldwide.

Apr 4, 2016

(by Katie Hart) The Medical Library spaces are heavily booked this week. The Historical Library will be closed at some point almost every day, and the Morse Reading Room will be closed on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons. Study space in other parts of the library will be at a premium. Also, a brief reminder that Wednesday is the Annual Associates Lecture. Here are a list of the closing times for our spaces: Monday, 4/4:  Historical Library,  3-7pm, “The Emperor’s New Genes: Science, Race,... Read More

Mar 2, 2016

(by Katie Hart) Since she joined the library in 1965, Jeannette Ponzio has witnessed the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library evolve significantly. Interim Director, John Gallagher, sat with Jeannette, the library’s longest serving employee, for a conversation about her many years of exceptional service. JG:       Jeannette, tell me about when you first joined the Medical Library. What was it like then? What was your first job? JP:        Before coming to Yale University, I worked as a bookkeeper at... Read More

Feb 22, 2016

Looking for some artistic stress relief?  Download and print our new coloring book of image from our Medical Historical collections.  The coloring book includes links to detailed citation data for each image.  Happy coloring!

Feb 16, 2016

(By Melissa Grafe)     Walk past the Circulation desk at the entrance of the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library and down the corridor displaying art from the Prints, Drawings, and Posters collection. Coming out of the corridor, you enter the Rotunda, the heart of the library.  The Rotunda of the Medical Library honors famed neurosurgeon and bibliophile Dr. Harvey Cushing (1869-1939).  When Cushing, along with Yale physiologist John Fulton and Swiss tuberculosis expert Arnold Klebs,... Read More

Feb 5, 2016

Despite the inclement weather, today's tour of the Deaf exhibition is still taking place. For further details, click here.

Jan 25, 2016

The powerful, gritty political posters of Robbie Conal are seen on city streets and the walls of major museums. This selection includes "Contra Cocaine," 1988, which addresses the introduction of crack cocaine into the U.S. via Los Angeles in the 1980s and "Freedom From Choice," 1992, on a woman's right to abortion information in publicly funded clinics. From Conal's series of political portraits, former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives John Boehner... Read More

Jan 12, 2016

On Friday 1/15 at 5pm, the Beaumont Club is sponsoring a lecture about the Library's exhibit “Historical Illustrations of Skin Disease: Selections from the New Sydenham Society Atlas 1860-1884.”  The lecture will be given by Jean Bolognia, MD, and Irwin Braverman, MD, both of the Department of Dermatology, and Susan Wheeler, Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Medical Library. More details are available on the School of Medicine calendar.

Jan 6, 2016

What is deafness? From a medical perspective, deafness is an audiological condition that might be resolved through hearing aids or cochlear implants. But from another perspective, to be Deaf (often spelled with a capital “D”) is to belong to a culture, with a shared language and identity. This exhibit explores how people have understood deaf communication and Deaf culture since the seventeenth century, with displays on the history of education, medical interventions, sign languages, and... Read More

Dec 15, 2015

(by Nathan Rupp and Melissa Grafe) Nearly 900 Yale School of Medicine theses are now available through Yale University’s online institutional repository known as EliScholar. These include “current” theses published in the last decade that have come out of embargo as well as several YSM alumni theses published as far back as 1952. These theses document the rich research done by Yale’s medical students, and can provide a starting point for current medical students... Read More

Nov 3, 2015

Monica Green, a scholar of the history of medieval medicine, recently profiled the Bamberg Surgery, which is part of the Medical Historical Library's collection.  The Bamberg Surgery is a surgical text dating from the mid-12th century which was acquired by Dr. Harvey Cushing and subsequently formed part of the original Medical Historical collection at Yale.  Green writes: The Bamberg Surgery doesn’t get a lot of love in histories of surgery, because of its patchwork character. As Corner... Read More

Oct 5, 2015

(Post authored by Melissa Grafe) The Medical Historical Library announces a new gift encompassing visual materials depicting medical practice, public health, disease, and more from the collection of Bert Hansen, Ph.D. Over a period of thirty years, Bert Hansen actively collected original materials to document and exhibit the visual record of public health and medical practice and research in America, primarily in graphics published in popular media.  Hansen has been teaching history at Baruch... Read More

Sep 17, 2015

The Medical Library's Digital Collections will undergo scheduled maintenance from 7:30am-noon on Wednesday, September 23.  During that time, they will be unavailable.  We apologize for any inconvenience. 

Sep 10, 2015

Historical Illustrations of Skin Disease:  Selections from the New Sydenham Society Atlas 1860-1884 The Atlas of Skin Diseases was among the first publications undertaken, in 1859, by the New Sydenham Society.  Time-consuming and costly to produce, it was issued in seventeen parts over a period of twenty-four years.  In this exhibit, Yale dermatologists Jean Bolognia and Irwin Braverman present the celebrated nineteenth century illustrations to a current clinical audience, making a relevant... Read More

Aug 7, 2015

A number of the Library's Digital Collections are temporarily unavailable.  Library staff are working to resolve the problem.  Please check back for updates. 

Jul 24, 2015

The Medical Historical Library is now on Instagram!  Charlotte Abney, one of our student workers and a graduate student in the Program in the History of Medicine, is the force behind the account.  We’re also on Twitter (@YaleMedHisLib) and experimenting with Pinterest.      The inner ear, as shown in one of several labeled pop-up diagrams in Anatomie élémentaire du pharynx du larynx, de l'oreille et du nez, by Étienne Rabaud, published in Paris in 1901. #histmed #medical #... Read More

Jul 24, 2015

Image from Nada Iveljić, We go to the doctor. Zagreb, 1974. This exhibit, on display for a final week in the Medical Historical Library, features books and other publications written for children about medical topics. Story books, pamphlets, coloring books, and comic books are published by various groups as a way to teach children about illness, medical care, and health topics at an age-appropriate level.  The exhibit was organized by Charlotte Abney, graduate student in the Program in the... Read More

Jul 24, 2015

(By Melissa Grafe) You can now request locked Medical Historical Library books through Orbis, instead of emailing staff at the Historical Library.  Please do this when you want access to our locked stacks materials, for use in our Historical Library Office/reading room, or any events, sessions, or classes that you may be holding.  For classes or other events, please email Melissa Grafe at melissa.grafe@yale.edu to discuss scheduling and support. From Orbis, in the Holdings area... Read More

Jun 5, 2015

Medical Historical Librarian Melissa Grafe is featured in the latest issue of Yale Medicine:  Now, Grafe pursues her interests in medical education and the history of medicine at work every day. As director of the Medical Historical Library, she helps students and scholars navigate its collections, housed within the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library. She curates exhibits that showcase materials from the library’s more than 140,000 volumes, as well as thousands of manuscripts, drawings, prints,... Read More

Jan 20, 2015

The Historical Library of the Harvey Cushing/John Hay Whitney Medical Library at Yale University is pleased to announce its eighth annual Ferenc Gyorgyey Research Travel Award for use of the Historical Library. The Medical Historical Library, located in New Haven, Connecticut, holds one of the country’s largest collections of rare medical books, journals, prints, photographs, and pamphlets. Special strengths are the works of Hippocrates, Galen, Vesalius, Boyle, Harvey, Culpeper, Priestley, and... Read More

Jan 8, 2015

An image from the Teratology exhibit There are 3 upcoming exhibits opening this month in the Rotunda, Hallway, and Foyer, in addition to Harry Potter!  Please join us for an exhibit tour for the Teratology and Prodigies exhibits on Wednesday, January 28th, at noon.   "Teratology: The Science and History of Human Monstrosity," in the Rotunda of the Medical Library Opening Jan. 22 at the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library Dates: January 22nd-May 15th, 2015 Curated by Courtney Thompson, doctoral... Read More

Sep 12, 2014

(Post authored by Terry Dagradi) Cushing operating at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital Photo by Dr. Walter Willard Boyd 1928-32 On October 1, 1926 at Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, Harvey Cushing performed an operation—removal of a mass from a patient’s head -- using the first commercial electrosurgical generator developed by to William T. Bovie [1], an engineer employed at Harvard University. The Bovie unit passed high frequency alternating current into the body,... Read More

Apr 8, 2014

Happy 145th Birthday Harvey Cushing! Harvey Cushing, born on April 8th in Cleveland in 1869, was the last of ten children of Henry Kirke and Betsey Maria Cushing and descended from a long line of Cushing doctors.A brief list of his accomplishments include: He considerably improved the survival of patients after difficult brain operations for intracranial tumors.In clinical medicine, he was an early advocate of x-ray and blood pressure determination.He developed techniques to control... Read More

Feb 7, 2014

The Perfect Man recently acquired by the Historical Library on view in the Cushing RotundaJoin us for an exhibit tour of selected acquisitionswith curator Susan WheelerWednesday, February 19, at 12 noonIn 1895, the original bodybuilder Eugen Sandow was proclaimed “the perfect man” by Dudley Sargent (YMS 1878).  In 1827, former slave Belfast Burton was paid tribute by his patients and mentor in a rare broadside testimonial circulated in Philadelphia.  In 1871, J.J. Woodward shared the first... Read More

Dec 5, 2013

  We have a secret!  Blog post on an item in the Books of Secrets exhibit, by student curator Jarrell Ng           Something that has both puzzled and fascinated me throughout this course is how the professors of secrets and their books became so authoritative even though many of their recipes were fantastical, and probably never worked. The charlatans especially - as depicted in Jan van de Velde’s print “The Quack: Populus vult decipi” (1603-1641) - were blatant in their fraudulence,... Read More

Jun 17, 2013

The Kristaps J. Keggi Vietnam War service collection, recently donated to the Historical Medical Library, contains the complete correspondence between Dr. Kristaps J. Keggi and his wife, Julie, during his time as a surgeon in the Vietnam War. The materials were all donated by Dr. Keggi, the current Elihu Professor in Orthopedics at Yale School of Medicine. The scope of the collection—personal letters, photographs, teaching materials and war wound images- presents a unique and comprehensive look... Read More

Apr 19, 2013

The Medical Historical Library’s digital collection includes School of Medicine photographs, portraits of 16th Century anatomist Andreas Vesalius, Harvey Cushing, and others, medical and surgical instruments, prints, posters, and drawings, and much more!  Recently, thousands of medical works from the 19th and early 20th centuries have been added to the Medical Heritage Library, an online resource of free and open historical resources in medicine.  This exhibit, on view in the Medical Library... Read More

Apr 4, 2013

   Wayne Seese U.S.A. 1918-1980             The Crack Up, c.1946       Watercolor Bequest of Clements C. Fry 1955 “Combat Art,” created by designated soldier artists, was widely exhibited during World War II and also illustrated popular publications such as LIFE magazine.    Clements C. Fry, Yale psychiatrist and collector, purchased this drawing in 1946 after having seen it in an exhibition in  Washington, D.C., where he served on the National Research Council.  On request, the artist Corporal... Read More

Mar 21, 2013

In January 2013, the Medical Historical Library acquired a collection of over 2600 international public health and safety posters from 56 countries.  Topics include maternal and child health, anti-drug and tobacco campaigns, breastfeeding, clean water, prevention of diseases such as malaria and polio, and accident prevention and safety.  Kenya, The Netherlands, Oman, France, and Germany are particularly well represented in the collection.  Posters issued by the World Health Organization (WHO),... Read More

Mar 14, 2013

Howard Scott U.S.A. 1902-1983 We Still Have a Big Job to Do! 1943 U.S. Government Printing Office for the U.S. Navy, Industrial Incentive Division Purchased through the John F. Fulton Fund 2012 During World War II, the Industrial Incentive Division of the U.S. Navy sought to improve morale among workers in U.S. industrial plants by emphasizing the importance of the plant’s products in the overall war effort. The morale initiative, begun in May of 1943, employed audio interviews and other... Read More

Jan 28, 2013

On view in the Library Corridor War Selections from the Collection of Prints and Drawings and the Historical Medical Poster Collection Eyewitness renderings of medicine in the field during World War I and World War II, together with posters from various wartime agencies, show part of the war experience and its effect on individuals.  

Jan 27, 2013

Robert A. Butcher, Co. H, 82nd Infantry, PennsylvaniaRobert A. Butcher was 21 when he enlisted in H Company 82nd Infantry Pennsylvania. Before the war, he was living with his mother, father, brother and sister in Philadelphia. His head was struck by a sabre on April 6th 1865 at Burkes’ Station, Virginia and he suffered two major cuts across the top of his head. He was admitted to Harewood Hospital on April 16th and, although the wounds healed rapidly, he began complaining of severe headache and... Read More

Jan 7, 2013

Portraits of Wounded Bodies:  Photographs of Civil War Soldiers from Harewood Hospital, Washington, D.C., 1863-1866 January 16th-April 1st, 2013 Tours open to all on Wed. Jan. 23rd, 4 p.m., and Friday Jan. 25th at noon! One hundred and fifty years ago, the Civil War raged throughout the United States, creating thousands of casualties.  On view now, the Medical Historical Library explores Civil War medicine through the haunting photographs of wounded soldiers.  Curated by Heidi Knoblauch, a... Read More

Oct 9, 2012

Medicine at Work: A Selection of Instruments and Materials from the Medical Historical Library September 22nd, 2012-January 13th,2013 Medicine at Work, on view beginning September 22nd in the Rotunda of the Cushing/Whitney Medical Library and foyer of Sterling Hall, exhibits instruments, prints, catalogs, fee bills, and books describing and depicting a variety of medical work. Surgical operations and tools, trepanation, electrotherapy, anesthesia, bandaging, and dissection and toxicology are a... Read More

Oct 2, 2012

On view in the Hallway September 22 through January 14, 2013. Nurses Selected from the Historical Medical Poster Collection and the Collection of Prints and Drawings Dan Smith, U.S.A. 20th centuryComplete Your Education Then Come With Me  c. 1917-1918Purchased through the John F. Fulton Fund 2010 John Mills U.S.A. active 20th centuryHelp! c.1917-1918Purchased through the Kent Ellis Fund 2008 F. Samuels Brummer U.S.A. 20th centuryTake a Red Cross Home Nursing Course c. 1943-1945Purchased... Read More

Jul 5, 2012

On view June 22through September 17 in the Medical Library Foyer.    Avoid Fatigue: Eat a Lunch that Packs a Punch! 1943Published by the War Food AdministrationUnited States Department of AgricultureGift of George M. Smith 1943 During World War II, responsible food habits were promoted as a contribution to the war effort by the U.S. government. The Eat to Beat the Devil series published in 1942 by Servel, Inc., makers of the gas refrigerator, fostered the idea of “eating for victory” and... Read More

Jul 2, 2012

"Family Doctor" by Grant Wood and Works by Other Mid 20th Century American Artists on view  June 22-September 17 in the library hallwayGrant Wood's iconic lithograph "Family Doctor," for which he used his personal physician as a model, is currently on view with twelve other prints and drawings by American artists.   "Family Doctor" by Grant Wood, 1940Lithograph"Children's Ward" by Robert Riggs, c.1940Lithograph

Jun 21, 2012

Maternity Care in Pictures:  A Portfolio of 31 Teaching Charts Showing Safe Maternity Care, 1939Published by the Maternity Center Association on view June 22 through September 17 in the Cushing Rotunda. This set of small posters, shown in its entirety, was designed for parenting classes, waiting rooms, and formal exhibits.  Many of the posters employed “photomontage” which combined a photographic image with a drawn background—a “modern” graphic technique which served to reinforce the “modern”... Read More

Apr 10, 2012

The Medical Historical Library recently acquired a collection of over 600 items dating from the late 18th and 19th centuries, including legal documents, correspondence, manuscripts, printed matter and photographs pertaining to the Coleman family of New Jersey. Of particular medical historical interest in this new collection are materials by two Coleman brothers, the Yale-educated physicians Dr. Isaac Pearson Coleman (1804-1869) and Dr. James Beakes Coleman (1805-1887). James and Isaac... Read More

Feb 15, 2012

The Medical Historical Library recently acquired a collection of letters by John J. Cushing, one of the first homeopathic physicians in California. Cushing wrote in the 1850s to his family in Providence, Rhode Island from San Francisco, where he set up practice. The collection contains colorful anecdotes about Gold Rush era San Francisco, including some on his experiences as a doctor there. In his letters, Cushing tells how he got barred as a homeopath from the newly formed local Medical... Read More

Oct 10, 2011

On View in the Library Corridor through January 6 Selections from the Historical Collections L.C. Clinker and M.J. Dwyer Don’t Waste Food While Others Starve! c.1918Lithograph printed by Heywood Strasser and Voight Lithograph Company, New York, for the U.S. Food AdministrationPurchased through the Lucia P. Fulton Fund 2010 Harvey T. Dunn U.S.A. 1884-1952 Victory is a Question of Stamina, 1917Lithograph printed by Latham Lithograph and Printing Company, Brooklyn, New York for the U. S. Food... Read More

Oct 10, 2011

Anti-Drug and AIDS Awareness Posters from the 1980’s and 1990’s On View in the Library Foyer through January 6 Selections from the Historical Collections Andrej PagowskiPolish b. 1953                 Narkotyki to gówno [Drugs are Shit]                Published for Fundacja Wspierania Tworzcosci, Kultury i Sztuke                ARS [Foundation for Supportof Culture, Art, and Creativity]                Purchased through the Madeline E. Stanton Fund 2008   GANG (a New York art collective) after... Read More