American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

Surgical Set collection from 1860 to 1865 - Civilian and Military

Civil War:  Medicine, Surgeon Education & Medical Textbooks

 Dr. Michael Echols  &  Dr. Doug Arbittier

 

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American Civil War Surgical Antiques

Research and Identification

Civil War Era Surgical Sets, Surgeon's Images

Civil War Surgeon Education & Medical Textbooks

Established 1995    .     Dr. Michael Echols Collection

 

As seen in:  Warman's Civil War Collectibles, Antique Week, Northeast Antiques, and various TV programs, Antiques & Collecting publications

Gemrig's Locking Suture Forceps

 

A simple locking suture forceps from the 1866 Gemrig catalogue with needle

This image is from the 1866 Gemrig catalogue proving the existence of a locking suture forceps during the Civil War.  The forceps is similar to the more common sequestrum or dressing forceps, commonly found in pocket kits.  The significance of this image is that it shows how the smaller suture needles were locked into the forceps to prevent rotation of a small needle while inserting the needle into tissue and these forceps could have been in use during the last years of the Civil War.  That said, this collector has never seen a locking forceps in any government contract-provided military surgical set.  That doesn't mean they did not exist in the civilian market.

See image #15 in the lower left hand side of the page image to the right.  The description of the forceps is #19 on the far right page: "Improved Polypus Forceps, combining Suture and Artery Forceps." 

The locking rack and catch  forceps is generally thought to be a later 1870's invention, but this image in the 1866 catalogue and publication of a similar instrument by Mathieu (France) in 1864 may point to its earlier use. 

   

Link to the 1866 Gemrig Catalogue

In Kirkup's book, he notes that Mathieu (page 271-272, fig. 349 right) in 1864, published a very similar, if not identical design of this type of single rack and catch integral to the handles.  It's entirely possible that Gemrig imported this design.  Kirkup also shows a locking rack and catch in the Sim's needle holder, c. 1864.

From Kirkup, 'The Evolution of Surgical Instruments', p. 272

 

 

Medical Antiques Index

American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques Index
 

Contact Dr. Arbittier or Dr. Echols

 

 

Civil War Medical Collections 

 

Direct links to all medical & Civil War collections on this site                         

American Surgical Sets:

Pre-Civil War:  1 | 2  -   Post-Civil War:  3  -  Civil War 1861-1865:  4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8   INDEX

Medical Text-Books:

1 | 1a | 2 | 2a | 3 | 3a | 4 | 4a | 5 | 5a | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 9a | 10 | 11 | 12    INDEX

Surgeon General's Office Library printed catalogues: 1840 | 1864 | 1865
Medical Lecture Cards: 1 | 2 | 34 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21    INDEX

Medical Faculty and Authors:

INDEX

Navy Surgeon Exams:

1863 Navy Surgeon Applicant Exams with Biographies   INDEX ONE | INDEX TWO

Surgeon CDVs, Images:

Army: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8    INDEX

Navy: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8   

Hosp Dep't Bottles, Tins, 

U.S. Army Pannier:

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

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Please note: information on this site may not be normally referenced as this is an active and long-term educational research project.  Personal notes may not be properly cited for publication.  Various articles are digitally reproduced under the 'fair-use act' of the copyright laws and are intended for educational purposes only.  Many citations are from Google digital 'books' and can be traced backwards via a search of a unique string in the citation.

 

 Arbittier Museum of Medical History Tour:   1 | 2 | 3

 

Last update: Monday, December 12, 2016