Catalog of the Army Medical Museum Surgeon General’s Office 1863

Civil War Medical Books

Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum, Surgeon General’s Office, Washington, D.C., 1863

Original cover Catalogue Army Medical Museum
This image depicts The Original Cover of the Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum published in 1863.

The Catalog of the Army Medical Museum was first published in 1863 at the middle of the Civil War (1861-1865). [Note: catalog can be spelled catalogue as well. Catalog is preferred in American English. Catalogue is the British spelling.]

OF INTERESTING NOTE WHEN I FIRST PURCHASED THIS CATALOG OF THE ARMY MEDICAL MUSEUM (1863) THIS WAS SELLER DESCRIPTION:

’58 pages complete, excepting lack of original paper covers, as explained above. 

Very good used condition. The catalog was later bound together with other material, as was common then, at which point the paper covers were removed. There are traces along the spine edge. At this time the edges were trimmed (also standard) which in this case results in slight loss of edges of the inscription “With the compliments of the Surgeon General US Army.” The final letter “l” in general is completely trimmed off. Pages are clean.

This is a very rare surviving copy of the first Army Medical Museum Catalogue compiled by it’s first Curator, John H. Brinton, Surgeon and published under the direction of the Surgeon General, U.S.A., Brig. Gen. William A. Hammond.

This copy was evidently presented to someone by Hammond, himself, as the inscription on the title page reads “With the compliments of the Surgeon General US Army” As described above, as a result of the edge-trimming, there is a small amount of loss at the edges.

Copies of this initial catalog listing only the first 289 items in the museum is exceedingly scarce and an inscribed copy from the Surgeon General, himself, is a truly rare and collectible item of Civil War Medical memorabilia.’

At that time, Curator John H. Brinton reported the collection consisted of 1,349 objects (985 surgical specimens, 106 medical specimens, and 133 missiles).

The 58-page Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum, Surgeon General’s Office, Washington, D.C., 1863, depicted here, listed a Museum number for each object, along with a brief description and name of the contributing medical officer.

This Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum, Surgeon General’s Office, Washington, D.C., 1863, has been professional rebound in the exact style of the original—actually when I bought the book it was unbound and I saw no sign that it was bound. So I had the cover put on to protect it and because I like the look. Some collectors may frown on this while others might agree good idea to protect the book…

Of note, by 1867, the Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum, Surgeon General’s Office, Washington, D.C. had been divided into three sections:

  1. Surgical (which listed nearly 5,000 specimens and reached 664 pages)
  2. Medical (nearly 900 specimens, over 136 pages)
  3. Microscopical (more than 2,000 specimens, over 161 pages).

Please visit the National Library of Medicine for more information about the Catalogue of the Army Medical Museum 1863.

If Antique Medical Catalogs interest you, they have their own collection grouping so click here: Antique Medical Catalogs.