History of Medicine

42nd Annual Dinner and Presentation of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library: Save the date

Richard Luduena, PhDThe Good, The Bad and The Ugly: Inbreeding and Incest in Royal Families will be the topic of the 42nd Annual Dinner and Presentation of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

6:30 p.m.

Doubletree Airport Hotel, 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough

 

Richard Ludueña, PhD, Professor of Biochemistry in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, will deliver the address at the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, November 7, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.  The dinner will be held at the Doubletree Airport Hotel, 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough.  Dr. Ludueña will discuss incest and inbreeding in the Spanish, Egyptian and Inca royal families, describing their behaviors and exploring reasons why inbreeding and/or incest, despite the taboo, persisted in these families.

Watch for more information in future newsletters.

Student attendance at the Annual Dinner and Presentation of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library is $30, and includes membership in the Friends organization.  Sponsorships are available for students who would like to attend but who need financial assistance. 

For all others, the cost of the dinner is $55.

The Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library invite all those interested in the history of medicine to an intriguing presentation and an enjoyable evening of good food and conversation.

Advance registration is required.  Please RSVP, including requests for scholarship assistance, by November 2, 2012 to Susan Hunnicutt: Hunnicutt@uthscsa.edu.

 

 

A message from the incoming president of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library:Dr. Robert V. Blystone, Ph.D.

It is my honor and duty to serve as the President of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, beginning in November of 2010.  I have worked alongside Tom Nixon, the son of P.I. Nixon, Jr., for many years at Trinity.  Nixon memorabilia is housed in the Rare Books section of Trinity University’s Coates Library.   Some of my lectures at Trinity were greatly influenced by access to the histology collection found in the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library.

Members of the board of directors of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library include, left to right, Dr. Charles Sargent, member-at-large; Dr. David Cappelli, president-elect; Rajia Tobia, secretary-treasurer; Dr. Julie K. Brown, past-president; and Dr. Robert Blystone, president. Not shown are Dr. Philip T. Valente, Dr. Charleen M. Moore and Dr. Richard Luduena, all past-presidents, as well as Dr. Adelita Cantu and Dr. James Henry, members-at-large.

It has been my impression that the Nixon Library is a treasure that needs to be spaded by the larger educational community in the San Antonio area. Several educational touch-points should be identified from the various college campuses in the area. The Special Collections could prosper by bringing a select group of college instructors to the library so that they can realize how these wonderful materials can support their teaching and learning efforts.

A second opportunity to pursue is to inform the older members of the medical community that historical medical books they may own might find their way to the Nixon collection.

I would appreciate your help in forwarding these objectives. Please contact me should you have suggestions as to how we might build on the strengths of the collection and use of the facility. I hope that during my tenure as President, The Friends can add to the legacy begun by P.I. Nixon, Sr.

Thank you .

– Robert V. Blystone, Ph.D. -

rblyston@trinity.edu, (210) 999-7243

Dr. Blystone is a member of a team that teaches the Integrative Biology course program at Trinity University.  He also teaches upper division classes in microanatomy and developmental anatomy.

Anatomists and Their Art: History of medicine presentation by Dr. Charleen M. Moore can now be viewed online

In October 2011, Dr. Charleen Moore, Distinguished Teaching Professor in the Health Science Center’s Department of Cellular and Structural Biology, gave a presentation on “Anatomists and Their Art” which featured many of the most important works in the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library.  Dr. Moore explained the interrelationship between anatomical study and art by looking at:

  • Artists who dissected (such as Leonardo da Vinci and Albrecht Dürer),
  • Anatomists who drew (such as Robert Hooke and the Bell brothers), and
  • Anatomists who teamed up with artists (as  Vesalius did with van Calcar, or Albinus did with Wandelaar).

You can see and hear Dr. Moore’s presentation (28 minutes long) by clicking the “play” button below.

 
 

Announcing the Noon Lecture Series: Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library

The Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library have planned a series of lectures on the history of  infectious diseases for the coming months.

The Noon Lecture Series provides opportunities for informal learning and conversation in the Howe Conference Room (5.076) on the 5th floor of the Briscoe Library.  Everyone is invited.

mosquitoSeptember 20, 12:00 noon – Death Delivered on Gossamer Wings:  the Resurgence of West Nile Virus Encephalitis in Texas, 2012

Gregory Anstead, MD, PhD, Director, Immunosuppression and Infectious Disease Clinics, Veterans Healthcare System will be the speaker.

 

Florence Nightingale, Cholera patients, Crimean WarOctober 25. 12:00 noon – Cholera: Ancient Plague, Current Scourge

George Crawford, MD, MACP, Internal Medicine Program Director, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio will be the speaker.

 

 

 

November 8, 12:00 noon – Apocalypse Cow- The Strange Rise and Fortunate Decline of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy

Gregory Anstead, MD, PhD, Director, Immunosuppression and Infectious Disease Clinics, Veterans Healthcare System will be the speaker.

 

For more information about the Noon Lecture Series contact Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian, Hunnicutt@uthscsa.edu

 

 

Books from the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library now viewable online at The Portal to Texas History

From Queer, Quaint Old San Antonio: Its Climate in Throat and Lung Diseases (1895): Views of San Pedro Springs and San Pedro Park.

A dozen books on Texas and medical history from the collection of the P.I .Nixon Medical Historical Library are now available as ebooks through the Portal to Texas History, an Internet gateway created and maintained by the University of North Texas.  In 2008, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) identified the Portal to Texas History as one of the best online resources for education in the humanities.  The Libraries’ contributions to the Portal to Texas History were made possible by a “Rescuing Texas History” mini-grant awarded to Anne Comeaux, Assistant Library Director for Special Collections. The books include:

Texas Nature Observations and Reminiscenses (1913) by Dr. Rudolph Menger, complete with many of Menger’s own photographs and photo-micrographs of native animal and insect life

San Antonio de Bexar: A Guide and History (1890) by William Corner, including a historical sketch of the city written by Sidney Lanier

An Account of the Early History of Surgery in Texas (1932) by Albert O. Singleton, originally presented as a presidential address to the Texas Surgical Society

Queer, Quaint Old San Antonio: Its Climate in Throat and Lung Diseases (1895) by C. E. Fisher, an illustrated “medical tourism” guide extolling the virtues of San Antonio’s climate, lifestyle and amusements for respiratory disease sufferers

A Frontier Doctor (1929), an autobiography by Henry Franklin Holt, a pioneer who was the first physician to practice medicine in the Texas Panhandle

A Treatise on the Eclectic Southern Practice of Medicine (1854) by J. Cam. Massie, a 720-page reference text on the theory and practice of medicine

Texas Surgeon, An Autobiography (1958) by Donald Taylor Atkinson, who practiced medicine in rural Texas and the Oklahoma Indian country before moving to Dallas and San Antonio

The Menace: An Exposition of Quackery Nostrum Exploitation and Reminiscences of a Country Doctor (1914) by Charles Dixon, about the work of ridding Bexar County of quacks and nostrum exploiters

Notes on the Newer Remedies (2nd edition, 1894) by David Cerna, a pharmacological reference text including physical characteristics, therapeutic applications and dosages for various synthetic and natural drugs

Luke Rosenberger
Director of Library Technology and Historical Collections

Books from the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library will be digitized for inclusion in The Portal to Texas History

Drawing of Chaparral (Roadrunner) with LizardThe Libraries have received a “Rescuing Texas History” mini-project grant to pay for the digitization of thirteen historical books from the P. I. Nixon Medical Historical Library collection.  The books will be digitized by the University of North Texas Libraries’ Digital Project Unit and included in The Portal to Texas History.

The Portal to Texas History is an Internet gateway to Texas history materials created and maintained by the University of North Texas Libraries.  The portal features unique collections of materials dating from prehistory to the present day, from Texas libraries, museums, archives, historical societies, genealogical societies, and private family collections.  The contents include images, text, and sound and video recordings and are made publicly available by the collection-holding partners for use in research, teaching, and private study.

The books sent to the Portal from the Nixon collection focus on Texas history, climate, and culture.  They include:

  • The Climate of Texas, published in 1894 by Isaac Monroe Cline. This book describes the effects of climate and weather changes in causing diseases and deaths.
  • Queer Quaint Old San Antonio: Its Climate in Throat and Lung Diseases, published in 1895 by C. E. Fisher
  • San Antonio de Bexar: a Guide and History, written in 1890 by William Corner
  • Texas Surgeon, an Autobiography, by D. T. Atkinson, a surgeon born in 1874 who practiced in rural Texas and the Oklahoma Indian country before moving to Dallas and San Antonio.  Published in 1958.
  • A  Frontier Doctor, by H. F. Hoyt, published in 1929 and describing the experiences and  adventures of his pioneering days.  Hoyt was the first physician to practice medicine in the Texas Panhandle.
  • Texas Nature Observations and Reminiscences, Dr. Rudolph Menger’s observations and reminiscences on Texas insect and animal life, published in 1913.  Contains numerous photo-micrographs taken by the author.
  • The Menace: An Exposition of Quackery Nostrum Exploitation and Reminiscences of a Country Doctor,  a concise history written by Charles Dixon in 1914 of the work involved in ridding Bexar county of quacks and nostrum exploiters.
  • Notes on the Newer Remedies, 2nd ed.,  a book by David Cerna, written in 1894 on the therapeutic applications of various remedies
  • An account of the early history of surgery in Texas, Presidential address presented by A. Singleton to the Texas Surgical Society in October 1932
  • A Treatise on the Eclectic Southern Practice of Medicine,  written by J. Cam Massie in 1854 to describe the treatment of diseases as specially adapted to the peculiar manner in which diseases manifested themselves in Texas

Coming in November: The 42nd Annual Dinner and Presentation of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library

Richard Luduena, PhD

Richard Ludueña, PhD

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

6:30 p.m.

Doubletree Airport Hotel, 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough

“The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly: Inbreeding and Incest in Royal Families”

Richard Ludueña, PhD, Professor of Biochemistry in the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, will deliver the address at the 42nd Annual Meeting of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, November 7, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.  The dinner, which is followed by a short business meeting, will be held at the Doubletree Airport Hotel, 37 NE Loop 410 at McCullough.

Dr. Ludueña will discuss incest and inbreeding in the Spanish, Egyptian and Inca royal families, describing their behaviors and exploring reasons why inbreeding and/or incest, despite the taboo, persisted in these families.

The Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library invite students in all of the schools to attend the dinner and become members of the Friends’ group.  The cost to students for the dinner and annual membership is $30.  Students are encouraged to apply for sponsorships which cover the cost of registration and membership for one year.

For all others, the cost of the dinner is $55.

All who are interested in the history of medicine are invited to an intriguing presentation and an enjoyable evening of good food and conversation.

Advance registration is required.  Please RSVP, including requests for scholarship assistance, by November 2, 2012.  Send completed registration form to Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian: Hunnicutt@uthscsa.edu.

 

 

Department of the Army medical historian to speak in January

Army logo

Thursday, January 24, 6:00  p.m.

Howe Conference Room, 5th Floor, Briscoe Library

On the evening of  Thursday, January 24 Dr. Sanders Marble, Senior Historian with the Office of Medical History at Fort Sam Houston, will speak to the History of Medicine Society on the topic,  Medical History and the Military: Opportunities and Differences.  The event is open to all UT Health Science Center affiliates as well as members of the wider community.

The History of Medicine Society is a newly-formed interest group of the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library.  For information about history of medicine programs or membership in the Friends of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library, contact Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian: Email hunnicutt@uthscsa.edu, or call 567-2406.

Exhibit in the Briscoe Library highlights the science and art of anatomical illustration

Carlos Machado, MD

An exhibit, The Artistic Style of Carlos Machado, MD: Selected Illustrations from the Netter Art Collection, is currently on display on the third floor of the Briscoe Library.

In the mid-1990s Carlos Machado was selected to continue the work of Dr. Frank Netter, a 20th century physician and artist who had come to be known as “Medicine’s Michelangelo.”   Starting in the late 1940s, Netter had initiated a series of illustrations that were based on painstaking research and study of the human body.  He developed groundbreaking techniques for presenting anatomical information in ways that enhance its accessibility to students, and over the next 40 years the collection grew into an eight-part series, with each part depicting a body system.  It is a classic resource on human anatomy for students of medicine and the health sciences.

Carlos Machado, who received his medical degree at the Faculdade Medicina de Teresopolis in Rio de Janeiro and later trained in cardiology at Santa Casa de Misericordia, has been a principal illustrator for the Netter Collection of Medical Illustrations for the past 19 years.  Dr. Machado has added over 1,000 new illustrations to the collection, and also updated many of the Netter images to reflect current medical practice and knowledge.  His work can be seen in Netter Presenter, a database containing images from the Netter: Atlas of Human Anatomy 5th Edition. 

Netter Presenter can be accessed from the library’s database pages

The exhibit will remain on display through the summer.  It  is on loan from NetterImages.com, ©Elsevier.

Susan Hunnicutt, Special Projects Librarian

 
 

Exhibit: Antique medical instruments from the collection of the P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library

“Ouch, that looks painful!”

That is a common reaction from viewers of the library’s new exhibit on antique medical instruments, located next to the Administrative Offices on the 3rd floor.  The exhibit highlights several aspects of medicine in the 17th and 18th centuries, displaying instruments donated to the library’s historical collections by the Bexar County Medical Society and individuals.  A scarificator, lancet, and blood cups were used with bloodletting to cure diseases such as fever, madness, anemia, and debility, often making the patient worse, rather than better.

An old amputation kit and tourniquet and an Army Civil War surgical kit remind us that amputation was often the only way to prevent gangrene resulting from traumatic war injuries, although the lack of antiseptic practices often caused rather than prevented problems.  A reproduction of a tintype held by the University Archives illustrates Dr. Crawford Long’s discovery of the use of ether for surgical anesthesia in 1842. There is also an old saddlebag used by physicians riding horseback and an ophthalmological testing kit belonging to Dr. Ferdinand Herff, a physician who moved to Texas from Germany in 1849 and became a prominent surgeon in San Antonio.  Finally, the display features a medical case belonging to Dr. Charles Dixon, a physician who lead the fight against medical quackery and nostrums in San Antonio in the early 1900s.

More information on these as well as other interesting items in the library’s historical collections can be found in the Treasures of the P. I. Nixon Medical Historical Library blog.  The library has many other  medical and dental instruments that have not yet been cataloged, and archival staff would welcome help in identifying how they were used.

For more information, contact Anne Comeaux, phone 567-2428 email: comeaux@uthscsa.edu, or Mellisa DeThorne, phone 567-2470 email: dethorne@uthscsa.edu.

The P.I. Nixon Medical Historical Library houses a collection of approximately 5000 rare and classic texts in the history of medicine, nursing, dentistry and other health care disciplines, dating from the 15th to the early 20th centuries. The library is named after Dr. Pat Ireland Nixon, a distinguished San Antonio physician and historian who worked  to build an exceptional medical history collection.

To learn more, visit the library blog Treasures of the P.I. Nixon  Medical Historical Library.