American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

Surgical Set collection from 1860 to 1865 - Civilian and Military

Civil War:  Medicine, Surgeon Education & Medical Textbooks

 Dr. Michael Echols  &  Dr. Doug Arbittier

 

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American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

Surgical Set collection from 1860 to 1865 - Civilian and Military

Civil War:  Medicine, Surgeon Education & Medical Textbooks

 Dr. Michael Echols & Dr. Doug Arbittier

2011 - "The sesqui-centennial of the Civil War" -  2015

The 150th Year Celebration

 

 Home page  |   Feedback & Contact Dr. Echols  |  SEARCH this site   |  Article Indexes   |   Medical Faculty & Authors

 Civil War Medical Books  |  Medicine Containers   |   1800's & Civil War Surgery Set Displays

Medical College Index - Lecture Cards  |  Civil War Medical Book Author-Title Index

Wanted to Purchase: Items like those on this website, including Civil War surgeon uniforms, medical books, CDV's, surgeon images, diaries, and related medical items ... Contact

Dr. Echols' partial list of Google books for Civil War Surgeon Research

 

Alfred Eastman Emery, M.D. 

U.S. Navy Assistant Surgeon Application

 

By Norman L. Herman, M.D., PhD.

The following is a dictated translation of the hand-written application to the U. S. Navy Examination Board during the Civil War by a civilian physician/surgeon for a position as a medical officer in the Federal Navy or for promotion to Assistant Surgeon by an Acting Assistant Surgeon.  The actual applications are in the possession of the author and presented to enlighten the general public and other researchers as to the education process before and during the Civil War, the personal history of the applicants, as well as to show their personal level of medical knowledge in answering the questions asked by the Navy Board of Examiners.  (Some applicants failed to pass and did not serve or served in the Union Army.)

This written presentation was first of a part of a two-part exam consisting of a written exam and an oral exam.   Many of these applications are rich with highly detailed medical content offering an interesting perspective on the medical knowledge and practices of the period.  A broad sampling of these exams is presented to give you a 'picture' of the type of applicant being examined and admitted to or rejected by the Federal Navy in 1863.   Much more detail on the individuals and their personal and naval history will be presented in a forth-coming book by Dr. Herman.

(The actual written exam photos are available, but not presented on these pages due to the size of the files.  An example of a hand-written exam is on the 'List of all Applicants' page)

If you have additional information or images for any of these doctors, please contact us.

A list with links to all applicants in this survey of U.S. Navy Applicants for 1863

Example of a handwritten exam given by the Navy Examination Board

 


Applicant: Alfred Eastman Emery, M.D.

 

Charlestown Mass.

March 25th 1863

 

Sir:

 

Agreeable to your request I hereby present the following synopsis my history.

 

I was born April 21st 1841.   at Concord N. H. and have consequently nearly completed my twenty-second year.

I attended the common schools in that city untill [sic] I was fifteen years of age when I completed my education by attending the Academies at Franklin N. H.  In November 1858, I commenced the study of medicine at the office of Dr’s Gage and Moulton of Concord, and two years subsequently when upon the eve of attending lectures my father was taken sick and being his only son I was obliged to go home to look after his affairs.  I remained untill [sic] May 1862 reading medicine when I could obtain leisure to do so, when I returned to the office of Dr. Gage, and have continued the study untill [sic] the present time.

                                                    

I attended a course of lectures during the past winter at the Massachusetts Medical College in Boston.

 

Believing that this is all that would be of interest to you I subscribe myself

 

Your obedient servant

Alfred E. Emery.

 

Surgeon W. S. W. Ruschenberger

United States Navy.

 

[Medical Board Note:  This candidate has a good foundation, and his character appears to be decisive.]

 


Questions by the Board:

 

Dr. Alfred E. Emery is requested to write answers to the following questions.

                   1.  What is the origin, course and distribution of the left carotid artery?

                   2.  What is chyle, where, and how was it formed?

                   3.  What are the diagnostic symptoms of pneumonia?

                   4.  Name two articles of each therapeutic class?  [sic]

                   5.  What are the physical properties of oxygen, and how was it obtained in a separate state?

                   6.  Define the terms, “temperature,” “latent heat”, and specific gravity.

 


Answers by Emery:

 

    1.  The left carotid arises from the arch of the aorta and proceeds upward in the angle formed by the sterno-cleido-mastoid and the omo-hyoid muscles.  After proceeding a short distance it bifurcates forming the external and internal carotid arteries.  The external gives of [sic] the following branches.  The superior thyroid to the upper part of the neck, the lingual to the tongue, the facial to the cheek and upper and lower lips, the occipital to the back part of the head, the temporal to the side of the head, some small branches to the ear, and near the angle of the lower jaw the internal maxillary which subdivides into smaller arteries which go to the upper and lower jaws, to the palate and to the meninges of the brain, the latter being the arteria meningea media which ramifies on the inner surface of the parietal bone.  The internal carotids enters cranial cavity at the posterior foramen lacerum, passes forward in the carotid canal in the petrous portion of the temporal bone and forms in the fissure Sylvii the anterior artery of the cerebrum.  In front of the sella turcica it communicates with its fellow of the opposite side.  It also communicates with the basilar artery forming the circle of Willis.

 

   2.  After the food has been mixed in the stomach and small intestines with the gastric juice, bile, pancreatic juice etc. if [sic] forms a light-coloured, homogeneous fluid, known as chyle which is taken up by the absorberets [sic] and carried by the thoracic duct into the circulation.

   

   3.  The signs of pneumonia are: – pain in chest, dyspnoea, cough, inability to lie on the affected side on account of pain, dullness on percussion, crepitation in the first stages, afterwards tubular respiration on auscultation: more or less fever according to the severity of the disease.

 

   4.  Emetics: – Ipecacuanha, antimosii et potassae tartras.    Cathartics: – Aloes, Gambagia.   Tonics: – Cinchona Quassia    Narcotics: – Opium, Beladonna [sic].     Diaphoretics: – Pulvis Ipecac et opii, antimorii et potassae tartras.

Arterial sedatives: – potassae nitras, veratrum virdi.    Anthelmintics: – Spigelia Oleum terebinthinae.

  

   5.  Oxygen is a transparent, colourless gas of the specific gravity a little lighter than than air.  It enters into the composition of nearly everything in the universi [sic].   It is obtained by depriving some of the compounds into which it enters largely of the gas by means of heat.  The exact process I am unable to give.

 

   6.  By “temperature” I understand that peculiar state of the surrounding atmosphere which is manifest to us, whether hot or cold, wet or dry etc.

 

I cannot give a definition of the term “latent heat” satisfactory to myself.

By “specific gravity” I understand the power with which anything is attached towards the earths surface by the attraction of gravitation.  Of liquids and solids water is taken as the standard of gases.  Atmospheric air is unity.

 

Alfred E. Emery


A list with links to all applicants in this survey of U.S. Navy Applicants for 1863

Example of a handwritten exam given by the Navy Examination Board

Medical Antiques Index

American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques Index
 

Contact Dr. Arbittier or Dr. Echols

 

 

Civil War Medical Collections 

 

Direct links to all medical & Civil War collections on this site                         

American Surgical Sets:

Pre-Civil War:  1 | 2  -   Post-Civil War:  3  -  Civil War 1861-1865:  4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8   INDEX

Medical Text-Books:

1 | 1a | 2 | 2a | 3 | 3a | 4 | 4a | 5 | 5a | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 9a | 10 | 11 | 12    INDEX

Surgeon General's Office Library printed catalogues: 1840 | 1864 | 1865
Medical Lecture Cards: 1 | 2 | 34 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21    INDEX

Medical Faculty and Authors:

INDEX

Navy Surgeon Exams:

1863 Navy Surgeon Applicant Exams with Biographies   INDEX ONE | INDEX TWO

Surgeon CDVs, Images:

Army: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8    INDEX

Navy: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8   

Hosp Dep't Bottles, Tins, 

U.S. Army Pannier:

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

Please request permission before commercial use or publication of any content or photos on this site and credit any use with:  "American Civil War Surgical Antiques"   All content and all original photography on this Web Site is copyrighted 1995 - 2015 and may not be used on any other web site or in commercial print without the expressed e-mail permission from Dr. Arbittier:  Contact   All rights reserved. 

 

Students doing reports or projects are welcome to use the content of this site without permission, but credits would be appreciated.

 

Please note: information on this site may not be normally referenced as this is an active and long-term educational research project.  Personal notes may not be properly cited for publication.  Various articles are digitally reproduced under the 'fair-use act' of the copyright laws and are intended for educational purposes only.  Many citations are from Google digital 'books' and can be traced backwards via a search of a unique string in the citation.

 

 Arbittier Museum of Medical History Tour:   1 | 2 | 3

 

Last update: Monday, December 12, 2016