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Medical Museums in the United States

The Bakken Library and Museum http://www.thebakken.org/ The Bakken, located in Minneapolis, Minnesota, was founded in 1975 by Earl E. Bakken, inventor of the first transistorized cardiac pacemaker. It constitutes a unique research treasure of 11,000 rare books and 2,000 scientific instruments relating to the role of electricity in life.

Center for the History of Family Medicine
An archives, historical library and museum, the Center serves as the only resource center devoted exclusively to the collection, conservation, exhibition and study of materials relating to the history of Family Medicine in the United States.  The Center is housed at the national headquarters of the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) and administered by the AAFP Foundation in Leawood, Kansas.

Clendening History of Medicine Library and Museum http://clendening.kumc.edu/
The Clendening History of Medicine Library and Museum is the rare books and manuscripts library of the University of Kansas Medical Center.

DeWitt Stetten, Jr. Museum of Medical Research – National Institutes of Health (NIH) http://history.nih.gov/ The DeWitt Stetten, Jr. Museum of Medical Research at the National Institutes of Health was established in 1986 as a part of the NIH centennial observance. It collects and exhibits biomedical research instruments and NIH memorabilia.

The William P. Didusch Center for Urologic History of the American Urological Association (AUA) http://www.urologichistory.museum/

DPTMSEC Museum Division — U.S. Army Medical Department Museum http://www.ameddgiftshop.com/museum.htm

Eichold-Heustis Medical Museum, Mobile, Alabama http://www.inusa.com/tour/al/mobile/eichold.htm

Dr. Samual D. Harris National Museum of Dentistry http://www.dentalmuseum.umaryland.edu/

The Image Archive of the American Eugenics Movement http://vector.cshl.org/eugenics/ This site presents the unfiltered story of American eugenics, primarily through materials from the Eugenics Record Office (today maintained by the DNA Learning Center, at Cold Spring Harbor, Long Island, NY), which was the center of American eugenics research from 1910-1940.

The Indiana Medical History Museum http://www.imhm.org/ The museum represents the beginning of scientific psychiatry and modern medicine while the building itself is the oldest surviving pathology facility in the nation and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Paul S. Russell, MD Museum of Medical History and Innovation tells the rich story of Mass General through interactive media displays, artifacts and photographs. You can learn about the hospital’s important contributions to the medical field and see how these discoveries and advancements have shaped the present – and how the hospital can continue to shape the future of medicine. http://www.massgeneral.org/museum/

The John P. McGovern Museum of Health & Medical Science http://www.mhms.org/

Menczer Museum of Medicine and Dentistry of the Hartford Medical and the Hartford Dental Societies http://library.uchc.edu/hms/menczer.html The museum came into being in early 1974. The collection includes instruments, equipment, furnishings, and portraits from the18th to 20th centuries, with a special emphasis on the life of Horace Wells and the history of anesthesia.

Mutter Museum, College of Physicians of Philadelphia http://muttermuseum.org One of the oldest and most intriguing medical museums in the country, the Mutter Museum has an important collection of artifacts relating to Philadelphia medicine.

National Museum of Civil War Medicine http://www.civilwarmed.org/ The Museum is the center for the study and interpretation of the medical history of the War Between the States. The Museum collects, exhibits and preserves medical artifacts, manuscripts, books, documents and other materials related to the period from 1861-1865. It also sponsors an annual conference on Civil War medicine.

National Museum of Health and Medicine http://www.medicalmuseum.mil  The National Museum of Health and Medicine began life as the Museum and Library of the Surgeon General’s Office, United States Army, and was until a few years ago known as the Armed Forces Medical Museum of the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology. It is home to the Billings Microscope Collection.

National Library of Medicine, History of Medicine Division http://www.nlm.nih.gov/hmd/index.html NLM History of medicine homepage.
NLM: Images from the History of Medicine http://www.nlm.nih.gov/hmd/collections/photos/index.html#A1 Images from the History of Medicine provides access to the nearly 60,000 images in the prints and photograph collection of the History of Medicine Division of the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The collection includes portraits, pictures of institutions, caricatures, genre scenes, and graphic art in a variety of media, illustrating the social and historical aspects of medicine.

New York Academy of Medicine: Historical Collections http://www.nyam.org/initiatives/im-hist.shtml  The Rare Book and History of Medicine Collection at the New York Academy of Medicine, established in 1928, is considered to be one of the finest medical rare book libraries in the world. This collection has grown, and today, Historical Collections of the Rare Book Room contains approximately 49,000 volumes on the history of medicine, science and other health-related disciplines, as well as a collection of rare cookbooks.

The Pearson Museum, Department of Medical Humanities, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine http://www.siumed.edu/medhum/2010Templates/2010Pearson/2010PearsonIndex.html Since its official dedication in 1980, the Pearson Museum has been a repository for the display of medical and scientific artifacts. Under the administration of the Department of Medical Humanities, the Pearson Museum collects, preserves, and interprets the history of medicine, health care, nursing, dentistry, and pharmacy from all cultures and eras, but with particular emphasis on the Midwest and the Mississippi River basin.

The Public Health Museum in Massachusetts http://www.publichealthmuseum.org/

Salinas Valley Memorial Hospital Medical History Museum

San Bernardino Medical Society http://www.sbcms.org/museum/

The Sierra Sacramento Valley Museum of Medical History

Smithsonian Collection Scientific trade catalogs 1800-1914

Smithsonian History of Science and Technology http://www.si.edu/Encyclopedia_SI/Science_and_technology/

St. Louis Science Center http://www.slsc.org/ The St. Louis Science Center is home to a significant medical artifact collection, originally belonging to the St. Louis Medical Society, The Societies collections were given to the Academy of Science of St. Louis, which became the Science Center.

A Traveler’s Guide to the History of Biology and Medicine, original guide by by Dr. Eric T. (Ted) Pengelley, updated by Julius P. Bonello, M.D.

UCLA, History & Special Collections Division of the Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library http://www2.library.ucla.edu/specialcollections/biomedicallibrary/index.cfm The History & Special Collections Division of the Louise M. Darling Biomedical Library, formally established in 1964, contains close to 28,000 rare books. In addition to the rare books, the Division collects and curates manuscripts, prints and portraits, and museum objects. The Division created and maintains the Index of Medieval Medical Images (IMMI), and has featured several online exhibits.

UHIC Medical Museum http://www.uihealthcare.com/depts/medmuseum/ University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics Medical Museum opened to the public in 1989. Since then, its goals to promote patient welfare and an understanding of both historical and current health care have been implemented through exhibitions and programs. This website features the Virtual Hospital, a digital health sciences library created in 1992 at the University of Iowa to make the Internet a useful medical reference and health promotion tool for health care providers and patients. To this end, the Virtual Hospital digital library contains hundreds of books and brochures for health care providers and patients.

University at Buffalo Health Sciences Library, The Robert L. Brown History of Medicine Collection http://ublib.buffalo.edu/libraries/units/hsl/history/
13,000 monographs from the nineteenth century with particular strengths in surgery, obstetrics/gynecology, dentistry, pharmacology, and oncology, as well as historical journal volumes.

University of Michigan, Historical Center for the Health Sciences http://chm.med.umich.edu Founded in1990, the Historical Center for the Health Sciences is dedicated to preserving the history of the University of Michigan Medical School and to studying the history of medicine and public health in Michigan.

The Ohio State University (Columbus) Medical Heritage Center
https://hsl.osu.edu/service-areas/mhc The Medical Heritage Center, located on the fifth floor of the Prior Health Sciences Library, houses books, journals, manuscripts and medical artifacts.

University of Virginia, Claude Moore Health Sciences Library http://www.hsl.virginia.edu/index.cfm The library is dedicated to the preservation and presentation of the history of the health sciences at UVa and around the world.

Waring Historical Library http://waring.library.musc.edu/page.php?id=692 The Waring Historical Library, on the Medical campus of the University of South Carolina, houses books, journals, manuscript items, and museum artifacts dealing with the history of the health sciences, with particular emphasis upon South Carolina and the South, generally. The Macaulay Museum of Dental History, located behind the Waring Library, houses a large collection of dental artifacts and books.

The Warren Anatomical Museum at the Countway Library of Medicine – Harvard University Medical School Rare books and special collections https://www.countway.harvard.edu/menuNavigation/historicalResources/warrenAnatomicalMuseum.html The Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine was created in 1960 with a formal agreement uniting the Boston Medical Library and the Harvard Medical School Library. Its Department of Rare Books and Special Collections now has pervue over the collections of the Warren Anatomical Museum, formerly housed in the Harvard Medical School. When the renovation of the Library is complete in 2000, selections from the Warren Museum will be on display in the library.

Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology https://www.woodlibrarymuseum.org/

Yale Medical Library: Historical Division http://historical.medicine.yale.edu/

Page last modified: April 14, 2016