Medicine timeline

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This timeline is about medical events that one can find in BRANCH.

Timeline

Chronological table

Displaying 1 - 15 of 15
Date Event Created by Associated Places
26 Sep 1818

First medical blood transfusion between humans

Blundell's GravitatorOn Saturday, 26 September 1818, James Blundell conducted the first medical blood transfusion between human subjects. During the course of the century, transfusion was applied as a remedy to different kinds of sicknesses and injuries, and performed at different times with various fluids. Image: James Blundell’s Gravitator, from “Observations on the Transfusion of Blood, with a Description of his Gravitator.” This image is in the public domain in the United States as its copyright has expired.

Articles

Matthew Rowlinson, “On the First Medical Blood Transfusion Between Human Subjects, 1818″

Jan 1829

Trial of William Burke

Drawing of Hare and BurkeIn January 1829, William Burke was tried for the murder of sixteen people in Edinburgh, for the purpose of selling their bodies to anatomists in Edinburgh. His accomplice, William Hare, turned King’s evidence and avoided prosecution. He was hanged and sentenced to be anatomized and displayed; his skeleton still hangs today in the Anatomy Museum at Edinburgh University Medical School. Image: Drawing of Hare and Burke (c. 1850). This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Sep 1831 to Dec 1832

Cholera Epidemic

The first major cholera pandemic to cross the Channel began in Sunderland in September 1831, spread throughout the country, and was not determined to be over until more than a year later, in December of 1832.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Jun 1832

Reform Act

first page of Reform ActThe Great Reform Act of 1832 was passed in June 1832 after long discussion, with King William IV giving the royal asses on 7 June 1832. This followed a failed attempt on September 1831 that was vetoed by the House of Lords. A second draft was passed after the King intervened. The Bill eliminated many rotten boroughs and created a new class of eligible voters, providing a model by which non-landowners might claim representation in Parliament. Image: First page of the Reform Act, from the British government's national archives. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Carolyn Vellenga Berman, “On the Reform Act of 1832″

Related Articles

Janice Carlisle, “On the Second Reform Act, 1867″

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Jul 1832

Anatomy Act

British Coat of ArmsIn response to the growing trade in corpses for anatomy schools, and in particular to the sensational murders of Burke and Hare to acquire such corpses, Parliament passed The Anatomy Act in July 1832, giving access to corpses that were unclaimed after death. Most of these were those who died in prison or workhouses, and whose families could not afford to claim or bury them. Image: The Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Related Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

22 Jun 1833

The Hand

Image from Bell's _The Hand_On 22 June 183, the anatomist and surgeon Sir Charles Bell published The Hand: Its Mechanism and Vital Endowments as Evincing Design as the fourth of eight Bridgewater Treatises. Its publication is part of a century-long fascination with a body part that rests in an uneasy ideological position between animality and mechanization. Image: Illustration from Sir Charles Bell's The Hand 115. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Peter Capuano, “On Sir Charles Bell’s The Hand, 1833″

Jul 1842

Sanitary Condition of the Labouring Population

Photo of ChadwickIn July 1842 Edwin Chadwick, with Dr. Thomas Southwood Smith, published his ‘The Sanitary Conditions of the Labouring Population,’ at his own expense. The report detailed the sanitary conditions of the poor and advocated reform, tracing public health problems directly to the awful state of urban housing the poor endured. Chadwick’s report launched the mid-century sanitary movement, though it had a slow start because change was expensive. Image: Photograph of Sir Edwin Chadwick. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Related Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Barbara Leckie, “‘The Bitter Cry of Outcast London’ (1883): Print Exposé and Print Reprise”

24 Aug 1846

Patrick Brontë’s Cataract Surgery

cataract surgeryOn 24 August 1846, Patrick Brontë had cataract surgery performed on his eye. Charlotte Brontë, who had accompanied her father to Manchester for the operation, used this time to begin writing the book that was to make her famous, Jane Eyre (1847). Image: Traditional position for cataract surgery. Courtesy of the Wellcome Library, London.

Articles

Mary Wilson Carpenter, “A Cultural History of Ophthalmology in Nineteenth-Century Britain”

31 Aug 1848

Public Health Act

British Coat of ArmsSpurred by the 1848 cholera epidemic and Edwin Chadwick’s report on The Sanitary Conditions of the Labouring Population, a Central Board of Health was established that provided for taxation to enforce sanitary reform and the creation of local Boards of Health. Image: The Royal coat of arms of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Barbara Leckie, “‘The Bitter Cry of Outcast London’ (1883): Print Exposé and Print Reprise”

Oct 1848 to Dec 1849

Cholera Epidemic

The second major cholera epidemic in the UK began in Scotland in October 1848 and is generally agreed to have largely subsided in the UK by the end of 1849.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Aug 1853 to Nov 1854

Cholera Epidemic

The third major cholera epidemic in the UK began in August 1853 and extended through November 1854. It is during this epidemic that John Snow deduced the mode of transmission, by water contaminated with feces.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Nov 1865 to Nov 1866

Cholera Epidemic

The last cholera epidemic is conventionally termed “of 1866” as that was the period of the highest mortality. The epidemic arrived in Britain in September 1865 and ended in November 1866.

Articles

Pamela Gilbert, "On Cholera in Nineteenth-Century England"

Jan 1877

Fat and Blood and How to Make Them

photo of MitchellIn 1877, Philadelphia neurologist Silas Weir Mitchell published Fat and Blood, and How to Make Them, the medical text that popularized the infamous Rest Cure for nervous women. (Exact month of publication unknown; if you have information about the correct date, please email felluga@purdue.edu with this information.) Principle elements of the cure included bed rest, force feeding, isolation, massage, and electrical stimulation of muscles. Image: Photograph of Silas Weir Mitchell, 1881. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Anne Stiles, “The Rest Cure, 1873-1925″

Jan 1892

"The Yellow Wallpaper"

photo of MitchellIn January 1892, Charlotte Perkins Gilman published her semi-autobiographical short story, “The Yellow Wallpaper,” in the New England Magazine. The tale’s heroine is a depressed new mother who goes mad while enduring a modified Rest Cure. Gilman herself underwent the Rest Cure in 1887 at the hands of Philadelphia neurologist Silas Weir Mitchell, who is briefly mentioned in the story. Image: Photograph of Silas Weir Mitchell, 1881. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Anne Stiles, “The Rest Cure, 1873-1925″

Jan 1905

A Dark Lantern

albumen of RobinsIn 1905, Elizabeth Robins, a well-known actress and feminist, published a novel about the Rest Cure called A Dark Lantern. (Exact month of publication unknown; if you have information about the correct date, please email felluga@purdue.edu with this information.) The novel fictionalized aspects of Robins’ own rest cure in 1903, including her infatuation with her physician, Dr. Vaughn Harley. Image: Albumen of Elizabeth Robins, circa 1890s, by W&D Downey, London. This image is in the public domain in the United States because its copyright has expired.

Articles

Anne Stiles, “The Rest Cure, 1873-1925″