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

 

 Charles E. Humphrey, 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 applicants in this survey of U.S. Navy Applicants for 1863

Example of a handwritten exam given by the Navy Examination Board

 


Applicant: Charles E. Humphrey, M.D.

 

I have I was born at Cherryville, Northampton County, Pa. on the fourth day of May 1842.  My advantages of education are these.  I passed two years in the Preparatory, located at Gettysburg, Pa. preparing myself for the freshman class.  In the fall of 1856, I entered the said class of Pennsylvania College, which it is situated at the same place.  I took a regular course of four years at College, passing through the Freshman, Sophomore, Junior and Senior classes.  During this time I studied Mathematics, History and Latin and Greek.  I also studied Chemistry + Mineralogy.  In Latin I read some of Ciceroe’s [sic] orations, Horace and Livy.  In Greek I read Heroptous [? Herodotus] works, and some parts of Homer’s Iliad.

 

I commenced the study of Medicine with my Father at Cherryville.  I attended two courses of lectures at the University of Pennsylvania, and graduated this spring.

 

I attended the clinics of Pennsylvania Hospital, as well as those connected with the university.  I also took a course on operative surgery at the university.  I also had some experience in the practice of medicine last summer connected with my father’s practice.

                                                                                   

My address in the city is Bald Eagle, 3rd street above Callowhill.  When at home it is Cherryville Northampton County Pa

                                                                     

Charles E. Humphrey

U.S. Naval Asylum

Phila March 19, 1863

 


Questions by the Board:

 

Questions to be answered in writing, by Dr. Cha’s E. Humphrey

1.  What is a fracture, + the rationale of union?

2.  What are the means of arresting hemorrhage?

3.  How is flooding arrested?

4.  What is the gas (in chemical composition) which we burn for illuminating purposes?

5.  What is coal oil?

6.  What is what is commonly called burning fluid?

7.  What is Hydatid?

8.  Define a “mixture” in pharmacy, and write a prescription for one, without symbols or abbreviations.

9.  What are the symptoms of ossification of the valves of the heart?

 


Answers by Humphrey:

 

1.  A fracture is a solution of the continuity of bony structures.  In a fracture there is always more or less laceration of the soft parts.  Inflammation is developed and an effusion takes place.  Liquor sanguinis and serum are thrown out.  The liquor sanguinis is absorbed, and the serum is changed into plasma, which gives origin to the callus.

 

2.  The means of arresting hemorrhage are these.  Cold, Styptics (one of the best, Monsells salt) and Pressure.

 

3.  Flooding is arrested by the application of cold.  By the introduction of an acid (as peeled lemon [sic], and by the administration of Ergot, which causes contractions of the uterus.

 

4.  Illuminating gas is a composition of Carbon, Hydrogen, and Nitrogen.

 

5.  Coal oil, is an oil found in the earth containing a large amount of Carbon, Resides a peculiar oily matter, as found in nature it is unfit for use, and must be purified.  Its origin is coal beds.

 

6.  Burning fluid is a compound of Turpentine and Alcohol.

 

7.  A Hydatid is one of the causes [?] of organized bodies, and lives in water. 

 

8.  A mixture in pharmacy, is the composition of different medicines mingled together either solid or liquid.

  Rx  Syrup Squll     Syrupus Scillae  ij

                                 Syrup Senevear [?]  j

                                 Laudnum [sic]  gtt XX

                                 Dose fʓj  

9.  The symptoms of ossification of a heart are; Difficulty of breathing – imperfect circulation, Blueness of the hands, and lips.  There may be regurgitation.  The sounds of the heat [sic] are changed.  There will be either the bellows murmur increased, or there will be the saw or rasping sound.

 


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