29 May 2012

Revolutionary Medicine

Revolutionary War re-enactment, Middleton Place, Charleston, S.C.
I soon discovered that re-enactment army surgeon Larry Tillman, at the encampment at Middleton Place this weekend is himself a medical school professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Medicine has a little more to offer these days. 

At that time they were big on bleeding and purging. They seemed to want their patients leaking from everywhere....bleeding, purging, cupping and carefully placed leeches. If that didn't cure a soldier, they had hacksaws to cut something off. The round dishes in the front show the size of the vaccination wound from smallpox vaccinations at the time. Yikes. These are the good old days of medicine right now. 

I have the good doctor's email (oooops) address because I promised to send him a picture of an antique medical kit someone brought to me. I have a sneaky feeling what I have is more Civil War period. I don't see much evidence of kits in the 1780's.