Authentic Period Civil War Medical Items

Civil War Surgical Sets
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Civil War Surgical Sets

Hernstein Capital Set   Tiencken Surgical Set   Snowden Post Mortem Set  
Kern Post Mortem Set   Brinkerhoff Stomach Pump
USA Hosp Dept Hernstein 3 Tier Set
USA Hospital Dept. Hernstein Trephine Set
USA Hospital Department Kolbe Four Tier Civil War Surgical Set
Weiss Cased Civil War Amputation Set

Civil War Surgical Sets
From The Collection of Dr. Scott Watson.

If you have sets you would like evaluated or would like to sell contact Dr. Scott Watson by clicking here.

This section of the site focuses on Civil War surgical sets, their makers, and the instruments that were included with the original sets. Many of the sets are marked by use for the U.S. Army medical corps (Union Army). Evidence of use by the medical personel of the United States Army is evident by an engraved plate on the top of the box that held the instruments. Not all sets used in Civil War medicine were marked in this manner. Some engravings that would bring Civil War medical use to the observer would be:
U.S.A. Hosp. Dept.
U.S.A. Hospital Department
U.S.A. Med. Dept.
U.S.A. Medical Department
There are other variations of these engravings such as U.S.A. Hosptl. Dept. which stands for United States Army Hospital Department (Union Army).
This is an example of a U.S.A. Hosp. Dept. marking.

u.s.a. hosp. dept.

Another important aspect of collecting an original Civil War era surgical set is dating the item. Just because the set has a U.S.A. engraved plate does not mean it is Civil War era as the Hospital Department was formed many years before the beginning of the Civil War. Many makers attached a label to the inside of the box containing their name and address. Having this information is very important when making a determination about the date the set was manufactured.
This Horatio Kern label is an example that would be found in a Civil War cased surgical set.

kern civil war post mortem set

Some Civil War cased surgical set makers are:
Horatio G. Kern, George Tiemann, Herman Hernstein, Snowden, Kolbe, Wade & Ford, Brinkerhoff, Otto, Gemring, and Shurtleff.

u.s.a. hospital department snowden set

Pictured above is a U.S.A. Hospital Department cased set showing an important feature in Civil War surgical set indentification: Sliding Military Latch.

hernstein civil war surgical set

Above is a typical Civil War surgical set by Hernstein. Some of the instruments in the set are: Amputation knives, scalpels, chain saw, bone forceps, artery needles, tourniquet, bone brush, capital saw, Hey's saw, bone chisel, trephine drills, ligature silk.

According to Stephen Smith's Hand-book of Surgical Operations, the following was contained in the regimental surgeon of the U.S. Army pocket case:
One large scalpel; one small scalpel; one artery forceps; one bull-dog forceps; one curved forceps; one dressing forceps; one needle; one sharp pointed bistoury; one probe-pointed bistoury; one long probe-pointed bistoury; one straight scissors; one knee scissors; one flat-curved scissors; one gum lancet; one tenaculum; one tenotomy knife; one abscess lancet; one exploring needle; one exploring trocar; one seton needle; one spatula; two probes; one director; one double canula; one compound silver catheter; six surgeons needles; one artery needle.

Discussing themes such as Civil War Surgery, U.S.A. Hosp. Dept. Surgical Sets, U.S.A. Med. Dept. Surgical Sets, Medicine, Hospital Surgery, Civil War Surgical Instruments.

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Hernstein Civil War Capital Set
Tiencken Civil War Surgical Set
Snowden Civil War Post Mortem Set
Kern Civil War Post Mortem Set
Brinkerhoff Civil War Stomach Pump
USA Hosp Dept Hernstein 3 Tier Set
USA Hospital Dept. Hernstein Trephine Set
USA Hosp. Dept. Kolbe Four Tier Civil War Surgical Set
Weiss Cased Civil War Amputation Set
Kolbe Civil War U.S.A. Hosp. Dept. Pocket Case
Hernstein Early Civil War Cased Trephine Set

Civil War Medical Links of Interest Civil War Medical Books by Category

What is a Civil War Medical Book?
Articles On Civil War Medicine
National Library of Medicine History During the Civil War
National Library of Medicine
Roster of Regimental Surgeons
Sanitary Commission Photographs
Civil War Richmond
Civil War Medical Terms

U.S.A. Hosp. Dept. Book 1 2 3 4...
U.S.A. Medical Department Book 1 2 3 4...
Materia Medica Pharmacy Book 1 2 3 4...
Surgery Book 1 2 3 4 5...
General Civil War Medicine Book 1 2 3 4 5...
Anatomy & Physiology Book 1 2 3 4...

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