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image: One-Man NIH, 1887

One-Man NIH, 1887

By Cristina Luiggi | June 4, 2011

As epidemics swept across the United States in the 19th century, the US government recognized the pressing need for a national lab dedicated to the study of infectious disease. 


image: Medical Posters, circa 1920

Medical Posters, circa 1920

By Edyta Zielinska | May 25, 2011

William Helfand began buying medically themed collectibles in the 1950s when he started working for Merck & Co. 


image: Ancient Anatomy, circa 1687

Ancient Anatomy, circa 1687

By Cristina Luiggi | April 1, 2011

Seventeenth-century Tibet witnessed a blossoming of medical knowledge, including a set of 79 paintings, known as tangkas, that interweaved practical medical knowledge with Buddhist traditions and local lore.


image: Medicinal Alchemy, circa 1512

Medicinal Alchemy, circa 1512

By Cristina Luiggi | March 1, 2011

During the Middle Ages, alchemists developed sophisticated ways to tap the medicinal powers of the Earth’s bounty. Liber de Arte Distillandi, published in 1512, is a layman’s guide to the preparation of these natural medicines.


image: Light Therapy, circa 1939

Light Therapy, circa 1939

By Cristina Luiggi | February 1, 2011

Around the turn of the 20th century—before sunscreens hit the market and the damaging effects of UV radiation were widely appreciated—physicians saw the sun mostly as a source of healing. 

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image: The Mindless Machine, circa 1664

The Mindless Machine, circa 1664

By Vanessa Schipani | January 1, 2011

By Vanessa Schipani | January 1, 2011


The Discovery of Penicillin, circa 1928

By Cristina Luiggi | September 1, 2010

The drug may very well be one of mankind’s greatest discoveries.


image: John Snow’s “Grand Experiment,” 1855

John Snow’s “Grand Experiment,” 1855

By Daniel Grushkin | August 1, 2010

As London suffered one of its worst cholera outbreaks, in the summer of 1853, John Snow took it upon himself to prove that the disease was transmitted through drinking water.


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