In the era before photography, portrait engravings were the only means of distributing images of famous individuals, including noted physicians and scientists. Many of these portraits were engraved from oil paintings, though some were based on sketches from life. Historians have recently begun to examine them for insights into the medical profession's self-image. The Historical Library's engraved portraits number in the thousands, and date from the sixteenth to the late-nineteenth century. They are stored in folders by sizes: small, medium, and large. The project to scan them for the Digital Library is ongoing.
Currently there are 2368 images in this collection.