Dittrick Museum of Medical History

The Dittrick Medical History Center welcomes the public, as well as the university community. A museum, archive, and collection of rare books, artifacts, and images, the Dittrick embraces the experience of individuals and society as they grappled with changing conceptions of health and medicine. Every artifact opens a door to unique stories, about patients, healers, and community. Read more about the museum and all that we have to offer here. Come learn about how medicine became modern!


Amanda Mahoney

The next Chief Curator: Amanda L. Mahoney, Ph.D., R.N.

The College of Arts and Sciences is pleased to announce that a Search Committee, chaired by Alan J. Rocke (Distinguished University Professor and Emeritus Professor of History at CWRU), recently fulfilled its charge of recommending to Dean Cyrus Taylor a candidate for Chief Curator of the Dittrick Medical History Center and Museum. Dean Taylor accepted the Search Committee’s recommendation after a personal on campus interview, and offered the position to Dr. Amanda L. Mahoney. Dr. Mahoney accepted the invitation and will begin at the Dittrick on December 3, 2018. Dr. Amanda L. Mahoney brings to the Dittrick ample hands-on museum...

Chief Curator James Edmonson retires

Reprinted from the Cleveland Medical Library Association Newsletter This will be my last CMLA Newsletter, as I will be retiring as Chief Curator effective September 30. It’s a bittersweet moment for me, as I have been most fortunate in finding a home at the Dittrick in 1981 (egads!). But I felt that it was time to hand the reins over to a new generation. I like to think that I‘m going out on top, having just recently developed a 21st century interactive exhibition, How Medicine Became Modern. I have been helped in that and in all other of our endeavors...

Anton and Rose Zverina Lecture, October 25th 6:00 pm, 2018

Hidden in plain view: Discovering the work of a 16th-century anatomist hidden in the historiated initials of Andreas Vesalius—Surprising images of the healing, stealing, dissecting, and vivisecting of bodies. Presented by Dr. Douglas J. Lanska De humani corporis fabrica of 1543, by the Flemish anatomist Andreas Vesalius, threw Renaissance anatomy into a tumultuous chaos, and ultimately overturned Galenic doctrines that had survived from the 2nd century—over 1300 years! The sublime anatomical figures of Fabrica are today widely recognized and admired. But few among us have given much notice to the historiated initials, the large blocked letters of the alphabet featured at...

Skin Deep: Photographing Dermatology, an online exhibit

Here we present material from a Dittrick Museum digital exhibit--Photographing Dermatology: The collections of Dr William Thomas Corlett (1854–1948). William Thomas Corlett was born in Orange, Ohio and educated at Oberlin College from 1870 to 1873. He studied medicine at the medical department of the University of Wooster (forerunner of the College of Wooster), graduating in 1877. After teaching at Wooster for two years he traveled to London and Paris to study skin diseases and later become a Fellow of the London Royal College of Physicians. Corlett returned to Cleveland in 1882 and was appointed lecturer, then Professor of Skin...

Museum hours

Saturday: 10:00am – 2:00pm.
Monday – Friday: 10:00am – 4:00pm

The Percy Skuy, History of Contraception Gallery will be closed from February 25th, through May 1st, 2019.