Short Trip to the Museum of Medical History

My friend Dott and I went to the Museum of Medical History on the Case Western Reserve campus. It has hours that are weird, and the rare books section was by appointment (bah) but we are both very fast when it comes to museums so an hour was all we needed. We do plan on going to this talk, however. Just in time for Halloween!

The building and libraries remind me of places around the Harvard University campus.The museum it self is very small, but the research and archives look to be quite vast. The main exhibit was on contraception and all things related to baby-making. The other exhibits looked like they were in flux, half finished or being moved, but we still saw some cool things and learned interesting facts. Did you know that to drink tea made from a Beaver’s gall bladder (among other parts) was supposed to be a baby blocker? Yep, it’s true.

Here are some photos…

I thought we should start bringing newspapers and brandy, and transform it into our own little club like the men’s clubs of London and New York in the “olden days”….except surrounded by microscopes. We also saw a slide show of old watercolor illustrations from France telling you exactly what will happen if you young men beat your meat too much! Coughing up blood, losing use of your legs, and rotting teeth are just a few of the symptoms, FYI. Also, syphilis is bad…

I need to go back again, the library alone is worth it. Totally geeked out there’s a picture of Babe Paley’s dad, Dr. Cushing, hanging up there, too.

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3 Responses to “Short Trip to the Museum of Medical History”


  1. 1 Rachel 08/31/2011 at 4:26 pm

    I love that the plate effectively reads “… but my friend this ‘lavement’ (enema) is good for a horse, not for an honest man…” lol. Apparently the ‘lavement’ also called a “Clystère” was done with a large tin needle and was very popular in the 16th and 17th century, the ‘age of tin’. I’ll never see the ‘Tin Man’ in the wizard of Oz the same again.

  2. 2 Treena 09/03/2011 at 10:23 am

    Coolbeans, Ms. A…

    I think I need to finally get over and see this 🙂

    Personally, I think the eye surgery stuff would creep me out more than anything else.

    Are those antique bidets (5th row down)? They’re beautiful!

    You know, I actually remember the rumor of using Lysol. I mean, YUK!
    As well as Coke and a few other things. Thank god for the repeal of the Comstock Law and Planned Parenthood.

    BTW, how are you and the leg doing? Better? Not to be nosy, just concerned. 🙂
    Have a great holiday.

    • 3 vendettabella 09/05/2011 at 10:52 am

      Leg is better except using stairs. But I set myself back twice by trying to dance — not the best idea. Other than that it’s fine, it just grosses me out 24/7.


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