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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Civil War Confederate Surgical and Medical Book Collection

Authors: Frances Peyre Porcher, Samuel Preston Moore, J. Julian Chisolm, Robley Dunglison, Samuel Cooper

Page Seven

The following collection of Civil War medical textbooks were obtained from the family of a mid-1800's book collector, Standish T. O'Grady of Mobile, Alabama, who obtained the books during or immediately after the Civil War.  The books were in the same birds-eye Maple bookcase since the Civil War era in Mobile, Alabama, and were obtained from a family member of the original owner in 2007. 



Cooper   Chisolm  Moore   Porcher   Dunglison

Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests, Medical, Economical, and Agricultural Being also a Medical Botany of the Confederate States, (1863) by Frances Peyre Porcher , M.D., C.S.A. (Extremely Rare)


Note: There is a seond edition of this Porcher book by Evans and Cogswell, published after the Civil War in 1869 in Charleston: Porcher, Francis Peyre. RESOURCES OF THE SOUTHERN FIELDS AND FORESTS, MEDICAL, ECONOMICAL AND AGRICULTURAL; BEING ALSO A MEDICAL BOTANY OF THE SOUTHERN STATES; WITH PRACTICAL INFORMATION ON THE USEFUL PROPERTIES OF THE TREES, PLANTS, AND SHRUBS. Charleston: Walker, Evans & Cogswell, Printers, 1869. xv,733,[44] pp.

The copy in this collection is probably the most ambitious and important work produced in the Confederacy.  It is the edition published by West & Johnston in Richmond in 1863.


Additional information on Frances P. Porcher, M.D.


Peyre Francis Porcher, Charleston, S.C., was born Dec. 14th, 1824, at St. John's, Berkely co., S.C. He is a descendant of a Huguenot family, who came from France in 1696. His early education was obtained at the South Carolina coll., Columbia, from which he graduated A.B., and his medical education at the med. coll. of the State of S.C., graduating from this institution M.D., in 1847, and settling in Charleston. He is professor of materia medica and therapeutics, and of clinical medicine in the Medical College of State of S.C., corresponding. member of the Acad. of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, and fellow of the College of Physicans of the same city; He is physician to the Charleston City Hosp; ex-president of S.C. Med. Asso., and during the war was surgeon in charge of the Confederate hospials at Norfolk and Petersburg.  He married, in 1855, Virginia, daughter of Hon. Benjamin Watkins Leigh and Julia Wickham, of Richmond, Va., and, in second marriage, the daughter of the late Col. I. I. Ward, of Waccamaw, S.C.

Given the difficulty the Confederacy had in obtaining medical supplies, this book, by a South Carolina physician ,was used as a guide to obtaining local botanical resources for medical or army personal use.  See a profile of Dr. Porcher and further explanation of the use and importance of this text. 


Given the topic of the book one might be led to mistakenly assume it was written for homeopathic physicians, but that is not necessarily true, however they may have used it as a resource too.  Book dimensions: 9 x 6 x 1.5 in.  Porcher was one of the most prominent medical figures in the antebellum South, and the founder of a hospital for slaves in Charleston in 1855. Resources has been credited with maintaining the Southern war effort for many months longer than if it had not been written. Using this book as a reference, Confederate medical officers were able, in spite of the blockade of Southern ports, to supply their medicinal needs through the preparation of drugs from plants indigenous to the Southern states.  Porcher was one of the most prominent medical figures in the antebellum South, and the founder of a hospital for slaves in Charleston in 1855. His early work on medical botany and his reputation as a physician led to his appointment as Surgeon- General of the Confederate States. Porcher's book was roundly hailed in its day by Confederate boosters, and the work was commissioned by the Surgeon-General of the C.S.A. It remains a thorough and impressive work on the agricultural, botanic, and economic resources of the South. "It is intended as a repertory of scientific and popular knowledge as regards the medicinal, economical, and useful properties of trees, plants, and shrubs found within the limits of the Confederate States" - Sabin. With an extensive index. According to Harwell, "This is the most important and ambitious work printed in the Confederacy.



Richmond, Va., September 8, 1862.

SIR: I have to inform you that you are authorized to make arrangements as complete as possible to effectually carry out the plan rendered necessary to be inaugurated by the Medical Department of collecting and preparing for use the medicinal herbs, roots, and barks so abundant in the southern latitudes of the Confederacy, and your attention is called to the propriety of at once making some simple cathartic pills, diarrhea medicine, and other mixtures for the ordinary diseases in camp. Doctor Park is an employed agent and now in Savannah engaged in the work of gathering such herbs, as are referred to above. You will please report to this Bureau as you progress in this important work.

Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
S. P. MOORE, Surgeon-General C. S. Army.


Please look at this excellent article relating to Porcher and Chisolm:  Anesthetics in Field and General Hospitals
Of the Confederate States of America During the Civil War 1861-1865: The Use of Indigenous Botanical Substitutes
versus The Availability of Chloroform


Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests, Medical, Economical, and Agricultural.  Being also a Medical Botany of the Confederate States; with Practical Information on the Useful Properties of the Trees, Plants, and Shrubs


Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests

This is the original Confederate published edition, dated 1863.  Prepared and published by order of the Surgeon-General, Richmond, Virginia

Original marbled boards, and marked spine.

Publisher: West & Johnson

A Manual of Military Surgery, (1863) by Samuel Preston Moore, M.D., CSA  (Extremely Rare)

Additional information on Samuel P. Moore, M.D.

Prepared for the Use of the Confederate States Army

Published by: Richmond: Ayres & Wade, 1863. The only edition. 

Description: With 30 drawing  plates and 174 individual figures, this was the first of only two illustrated military surgical manuals (one by Moore and one by Chisolm) to have been compiled and printed in the Confederacy.  During the Civil War, Dr. Moore was the surgeon general of the Confederate States Army Medical Department. 


Field size manual: 7  x 4 1/2 x 1 in.  Original marbled boards, and cloth spine. Original stiff paper binding.



Publication Data, Preface and Introduction


Click to enlarge surgery photos from Moore's text book


 Manual of Military Surgery, (1862), by J. Julian Chisolm, CSA (Extremely Rare)

 Regulations of the Medical Department of the Confederate States

 Additional information on John Julian Chisolm, M. D.

 Civil War anesthesia relative to Porcher and Chisolm use of ether and chloroform

Prepared for the Use of the Confederate States Army.  Published: Richmond, Va., West & Johnson, 1862. Edition: 2d ed.


A manual of military surgery, for the use of surgeons in the Confederate States army; with an appendix of the rules and regulations of the Medical Department of the Confederate States Army, 446 pages.  Plus an appendix which contains the Regulations for the Medical Department of the Confederate States.  For a total number of pages: 514.  Field size: 7 1/2 x 5 1/4 x 1 1/4 in.


J. Julian Chisolm, A Manual of Military Surgery for the Use of Surgeons in the Confederate States Army.  2nd ed.   514 pp.   Richmond: West & Johnson, 1862. Chisolm (1830-1903) was the foremost surgeon in the Confederacy, and his important military surgery manual went through three editions.

New Remedies: With Formulae for their Administration, (1856 ), by Robley Dunglison, M.D.


This is a medical book that would have been available to doctors in the Confederate Army and was part of the O'Grady collection from Mobile, Alabama.


Additional information on Robley Dunglison, M.D.


NEW REMEDIES WITH FORMULAS FOR THEIR PREPARATION AND ADMINISTRATION.  Seventh edition with extensive Additions In one very large octavo volume leather of 770 pages $3.75., 1861


Another edition of the New Remedies having been called for the author has endeavored to add everything of moment that has appeared since the publication of the last edition.  One of the most useful of the author's works.  Southern Medical and Surgical Journal.  This elaborate and useful volume should be found in every medical library for as a book of reference for physicians it is unsurpassed by any other work in existence and the double index for diseases and for remedies will be found greatly to enhance its value.  New York Med Gazette


Jefferson Medical College lecture card for Robley Dunglison, M.D. for Institutes of Medicine, 1867-8



Display ad by publisher 1856


A Dictionary of Practical Surgery, (1846), by Samuel Cooper, M.D.


This is a medical book that would have been available to doctors in the Confederate Army, but in reality, almost any textbook on surgery was available through various sources.  This book was part of the O'Grady collection from Mobile, Alabama.


Continue to Page 8

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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

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Navy Surgeon Exams:

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

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American Civil War Medicine & Surgical Antiques

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Last update: Monday, December 12, 2016