PACHSmörgåsbord: History

Saturday, March 13, 2010

HoS Micropost: Galileo’s Sidereus Nuncius turns 400

Yet another anniversary to celebrate today: the 400th anniversary of Galileo’s Sidereus Nuncius.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 03/13 at 10:45 PM


The latest in my Pluto project posts. This post, on the anniversary of the announcement of the discovery of a trans-Neptunian object, looks as some of those earliest announcements to see how they portrayed the discovery and who got credit for making it.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 03/13 at 10:30 PM

Monday, March 08, 2010

Medicines for the Faithful

This (long) post offers some thoughts about Peruna and its continued success into the 20th century. I suggest that Peruna’s success needs to be seen within the context of a continuing belief in astrology, particularly amongst certain populations in the U.S. I highlight the ways that Peruna’s astrological claims would resonate with the Amish and Mennonite communities.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 03/08 at 01:47 PM

Thursday, February 04, 2010

S. W. Mitchell and Phantom Limbs

The Civil War surgeon S. Wier Mitchell was one of the first physicians to study phantom limb syndrome. He collaborated with W.W. Keen and G.R. Morehouse at Turner’s Lane Hospital in Philadelphia (aka Stump Hospital). Their work formed the foundation for groundbreaking research on and understanding of neurological injuries.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 02/04 at 10:11 PM

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Kepler on supernova, theology and astrology

Johannes Kepler, who was born on 27 December 1571, is the subject of a couple recent interesting articles. These articles are an opportunity to see how Kepler was typical of the early-modern European scholar, a person as interested in astronomy and optics (our notion of sciences) as theology and astrology.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 12/31 at 12:17 PM
(1) Comments

Friday, October 30, 2009

Gold, Elixirs and Books of Secrets

A lecture on alchemy, as part of the Year of Science

Posted by on 10/30 at 04:03 PM

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Wright’s Indian Vegetable Pills

Another bit of local patent medicine history. This copy of Wright’s almanac was sold at Frank T. Landis’s shop in Womelsdorf, PA.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 10/18 at 04:33 PM

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Dr. Jayne’s Family Medicines: A Philadelphia based Patent Medicine Company

Dr. Jayne’s was one of the first patent medicine companies in the U.S. to issue annual almanacs. By the 1850s the company was one of the most successful patent medicine companies in the U.S. This post looks at Dr. Jayne’s efforts to brand and protect its patent medicines, and then concludes with some brief reflection on the value of studying patent medicines.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 10/11 at 10:31 PM

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Quack medical cures: J.C. Ayer and the persistence of personal testimony

J.C. Ayer, another patent medicine company, relied on recipe books and personal testimony to sell its cure-all: Sarsaparilla.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 10/07 at 11:07 AM

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Selling Medicines in the Late 19th and Early 20th Century

A short look at the marketing efforts of Dr. Miles Medical Company, a patent medicine company in Elkhart, IN. It is interesting to note the prominent place of astrology in the company’s marketing efforts.

Posted by Darin Hayton on 10/01 at 10:35 PM
(1) Comments

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