The George Tiemann Company of New York
dominated the manufacture of high quality surgical instruments in the 1800's. This
particular set is extensive for the period and was most likely manufactured somewhere
around 1850, however the label shown would indicate anywhere from 1833 to 1855.
Tiemann manufactured instruments and cased sets extensively for the Union Army during the
Civil War. Tiemann sets are wanted to buy.
All dates are from the Directory of Makers and Dealers as listed by Edmonson in American
Surgical Instruments: an Illustrated History.
George Tiemann cutler
1826-32: 35 Chatham Street
1833-55: 63 Chatham Street (manufacturer of scissors and surgical
instruments beginning in 1841)
Each instrument was handmade by skilled
craftsmen who produced quality instruments greatly sought after by the medical community
of the time. Many famous physicians of the time contributed ideas and designs for
the instruments which Tiemann would then incorporate into his production and sales
catalogs. This cooperation between doctor and manufacturer continues to this day.
Shown here, in a rose wood case, is a
extensive four tier ivory set which includes surgical instruments for eye, skull, tonsils,
amputation of limb and appendages, urethral, blood letting, drainage of cavities, kidney
stone removal, and suture. All handles are made of ivory and the blades are made of
surgical steel. This is the state of the art for that time period in America.
The Tiemann Company was a dominant force until just after the turn of this century, and then lost most of the medical business due to inexpensive mass produced imports from
Germany. There is still a Tiemann Medical company in existence today.
See a similar ivory set on page 102, fig. 132 in Edmonson's book.
External view of case (approx. 3x13x6")
Early style saw blade with vertical
All four sections. (Left side without saw