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

 

Richard James Plummer Goodwin, M.D.

U.S. Navy Assistant Surgeon Application

 

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

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 93 applicants in this survey of U.S. Navy Applicants for 1863

Example of a handwritten exam given by the Navy Examination Board

 


Applicant: R. J. P.  Goodwin

 

Navy Yard Boston July 20th 1863

W. S. W.  Rushenberger

Surgeon U.S.N.            

 

Dear Sir

                                                   

I have the honor to submit the following items in regard to birth, education etc.

                                        

Richard James Plummer Goodwin born in Boston Mass. June 7th 1837 received my primary education in the Public Schools of Boston where I remained from the age of four years until Nov. 1856 when I entered the Medical Department of Harvard University where I remained until 1859 during the above period of three years I was also connected as pupil with the Tremont Medical School two years, and the Lawrence Scientific School at Cambridge one year, in July 1861 I was admitted a Fellow of the Mass. Med. Society and continued in private practice until Aug. 1862 when I was appointed Act. Asst. Surgeon U.S.A. continuing in service until Mar. 1st 1863 when I resigned on acct of sickness my family and received an honorable discharge from the service.

                

Very respectfully

Your obedient servant

R. J. P. Goodwin

 


Questions by the Board:

 

Dr. R. J. P. Goodwin is requested to write answers the following questions.

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

                2.  What is the origin, course and distribution of the femoral artery?

                3.  What are the diagnostic symptoms of typhoid fever?

                4.  What are the officinal preparations of opium and the dose of each?

                5.  What substances result from the chemical combination of oxygen with nitrogen?

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

 


Answers by Goodwin:

 

1.  Chyle is a fluid of white color and of consistency of cream, it is product of digestion both of animal and vegetable substances.  Food when taken into the mouth is reduced by the action of the teeth into smaller particles, it also becomes mixed with saliva a secretion from several small glands situated beneath the tongue and sides of the mouth, which secretion exerts a chemical action on various articles of food, having the power of converting starch into dextrine or grape sugar it also serves to moisten the food and facillitate [sic] its passage down the œsophagus into the stomach, after entering the stomach it becomes mixed with the Gastric Juice a fluid secreted from the orifices of small glands embedded in the mucous membrane of the stomach, which converts the food into a homogeneous fluid of the consistency and appearance of gruel, this fluid after a variable time – which is acid passes into the duodenum and there is mixed with the bile which is alkaline and secreted from the gall bladder being propelled along the intestinal canal it is gradually absorbed by small glands situated in the mucous membranse [sic] of the intestines which take up only such portions as are capable of affording nutrition to the body.  This fluid which is now chyle is carried by small ducts to the Lymphatic duct from whence it is carried into the blood to form new corpuscles.

             

2.  The aorta after passing down the anterior part of the spinal column and within the cavity of the thorax subdivides on its entrance within the pelvis into the right and left iliac arteries which passing out the rings formed by the lower angle of the internal oblique muscles and Pouparts ligament it is continued along the course of the femur inwards and backwards where it subdivides at the popliteal space

             

3.  Typhoid Fever is characterized by quick and rapid pulse, heat, thirst, furred tongue, tenderness of abdomen, delirium.  There is also a tendency to diarrhoea later in disease.

 

4.  Opium is prescribed both in the solid and fluid states.

In the solid state it is used in pills and powders.  The dose of solid opium is one gr.

  

Sulph. Morphia and Acetate of Morphia gr   Alcoholic Tincture of Opium the dose 30 gtt of the Camphorated Tinct 1 dr.  Pulv. Opium is also incorporated with Ipecac and Sulph of Potassa forming Dover’s Powder that dose of which is x grs or less.

 

In cases where severe pain exists larger doses may be administered with impunity.

 

5th  Question not prepared to answer

 

6.  By the term “Temperature” we mean the various degrees of heat or cold which a body possesses, taking boiling water as a standard

        

By latent heat we understand an inherent property which certain substances possess of developing an intense heat when subjected to favorable circumstances.

        

Specific gravity is the known weight of a given quantity of a fluid taking distilled water as a standard.

                                                                      

Rx

             Carb. Ammonia grs x

             Agua Camphorata j

             dose one tablespoonful

 

R. J. P.  Goodwin


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