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Medicine in the Americas
May 31, 2011 11:51 AM   Subscribe

Medicine in the Americas is a digital library project that makes freely available original works demonstrating the evolution of American medicine from colonial frontier outposts of the 17th century to research hospitals of the 20th century.

History of the pestilence, commonly called yellow fever, which almost desolated Philadelphia, in the months of August, September & October, 1798 (1799)

Effects of bloodletting on the young subject (1840)

Lives, adventures, anecdotes, amusements, and domestic habits of the Siamese twins: one of the greatest wonders of the present time, being two perfectly formed persons, whose bodies, by a singular caprice of nature, are united together as one (1850)

The beauties and deformities of tobacco-using: or its ludicrous and its solemn realities (1851)

An appeal in behalf of the medical education of women (1856)
posted by Trurl (9 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
OH HELLS YES. Thanks!
posted by The White Hat at 11:57 AM on May 31, 2011


Wow, this looks like it would be really amazing if only they'd created an interface for, you know, actually exploring some of the material.
posted by alms at 12:06 PM on May 31, 2011


if only they'd created an interface for, you know, actually exploring some of the material

After you click "View book", you can perform searches. For example, in the tobacco book I searched for "cigar" and found this:

A gentleman with a plug stuck in one side of the mouth, and a cigar genteely poised in the opposite side, with fire burning at one end and a fool sucking and puffing at the other, and then the nose bestud inside and out with rich gems from the golden powder of the weed, is certainly completing the climax of high personal quality.

Old-school snark!

You can also download the texts as .txt or .pdf.
posted by Trurl at 12:29 PM on May 31, 2011


Holy Fuck, Yes!

I love my copy of Primitive Physic, old school common sense a lot of which are low tech iterations of modern therapy.
posted by Blasdelb at 12:34 PM on May 31, 2011


Is there some way to download all of them as PDFs?
posted by Blasdelb at 12:41 PM on May 31, 2011


After you click "View book", you can perform searches

Well, yes, I realize that it's possible to search within individual works. I could also download the PDF file and search it locally. The point, though, is that the site doesn't give me any tools for exploring across individual works. If it wants to "demonstrate the evolution of American medicine" it should be more than a big pile of books. It should give you a way of exploring particular subjects and seeing how they have, in fact, evolved.

The current search functionality is less than useless. For example, searching for childbirth results mostly in articles about cholera, including cholera in India. FTW?

If you can find interesting stuff in here, I'm very happy for you. I found it frustrating and disappointing.
posted by alms at 1:01 PM on May 31, 2011


Yeah, cholera seems to show up a lot no matter what you type in the basic search box, but I've been going through the subject search and having a bit more luck. It is certainly not less than useless.

Now I'm going back to reading Remarks on the utility and necessity of asylums or retreats for the victims of intemperance.
posted by marxchivist at 2:27 PM on May 31, 2011


I think I am in love. I cannot wait to read some of these. Thanks, Trurl!
posted by cereselle at 3:43 PM on May 31, 2011


Just came across Prostitution and its Sanitary Management and found out some areas of the USA have had regulated prostitution. The more you know... (doo do do). It's also a very level-headed account of measures enacted in various countries through time, which I did not expect from a book of that era.

I'm interested in 19th-20th century quack doctors, Victorian weirdness, and natural remedies, so this is like a triple-win; thanks.
posted by nTeleKy at 12:27 PM on June 1, 2011


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