HAPPY HALLOWEEN! Have fun out there, but don’t go bleeding yourself dry! Do however stop by the Special Collections display on the 6th floor if you’d like to see some grisly bloodletting tools. These bloodletting scarificators range in different styles and sizes for the whole family! And to better get acquainted with this age old art, below is a selection of books from our collection here at Hirsh:
For this Halloween edition of Throwback Thursday, we look at one of the rarest volumes in Hirsh’s Special Collections room. Dating back to 1649, The Works of that Famous Chirurgion Ambrose Parey is a landmark in the history of medicine and surgery. This book is profusely illustrated with quaint anatomical woodcuts, portraits, and various examples from natural history. It also includes a chapter entitled Of Monsters and Prodigies, hearsay which for many in the 17th Century, stirred their superstitions and fear of the unknown. Happy Halloween!
Safely stored in the Special Collections Room of the Hirsh Health Sciences Library, is this haunting Civil War surgical kit. Gift of Dr. Murry L. Shipp, M’39, it was made between the years of 1858-1865 right here in Boston by Codman & Shurtleff Surgical Instruments on Tremont Street. This kit contains all its original tools and is remarkably preserved. Should you wish to see it in person and hold a piece of history in your hands, just ask a librarian or an assistant for directions. We’ll provide the white gloves off-course.
Hirsh has a collection of rare, centuries-old books and artifacts that have accumulated over the years—they are housed on the 6th floor of the Sackler building and are available to you for library use only.
This summer we undertook a most enjoyable clean-up project (for the book-lover/ history-nut) of the Special Collections room: re-classifying and cataloging hundreds of dusty, old books from their Library of Congress call numbers to National Library of Medicine, and creating new archival ID strips while conducting preservation tasks as needed.
Many thanks are due to Stack Assistants Rebecca Philio and Tiffany Wong for their help and support. The project has now reached completion and was a great success!
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