J. H. Gemrig was
a surgical instrument maker in Philadelphia, Pa. during 1840 to 1881 in various
forms (alone, with his brother, and with his son). During the Civil War,
Gemrig was a major supplier of surgical sets under contract to the Union
forces. His company was located at 43 S, 8th from 1846 to 1865. All dates are from the
Directory of Makers and Dealers as listed by Edmonson in American Surgical
Instruments: an Illustrated History:
Jacob H. Gemrig surgical instrument maker
1841-44: 48 N. 6th
1845-49: S. 8th
1846-65: 43 S. 8th
1866-80: 109 S. 8th
set, which may date to a little before 1867, is an example of a style where the
knives are stored on edge rather than on their
sides. The knives and saws are
smaller in this set compared to those in some other Gemrig sets. Note the
massive size of bone forceps and tourniquet relative to the size of the knives
Compare this set to a
similar Gemrig and note the
The tourniquet is marked 'Gemrig' as are all the other instruments.
The only pieces missing are a tissue forceps and small scalpel.
This set was
acquired at a flea-market in Pennsylvania twenty years ago for $40, needless to
say the buyer made a good return on his investment when I acquired it from him
between this set and a earlier Gemrig set.
See an 1866
Gemrig catalog with
diagrams of instruments.