Hours: Monday to Friday, 10am-noon, 1pm-4:30pm
Location: Sterling Hall of Medicine, 333 Cedar Street, New Haven, CT 06510
Contact: 203-737-1192, firstname.lastname@example.org
Access: must register, see website: http://guides.library.yale.edu/speccoll-register
Website address: https://library.medicine.yale.edu/historical
The Historical Library contains a large and unique collection of rare medical books, medical journals to 1920, pamphlets, prints, and photographs, as well as current works on the history of medicine. Special strengths are the works of Hippocrates, Galen, Vesalius, Boyle, Harvey, and S. Weir Mitchell, and works on anesthesia, and smallpox inoculation and vaccination. The Library owns over 300 medical incunabula. There are over 50 medieval and Renaissance manuscript codices in the library and about 25 Persian and Arabic manuscripts. The Library also has the originals of Harvey Cushing's and John Fulton's diaries as well as bound volumes of selected correspondence and memorabilia.
The Historical Library holds thousands of pamphlets and medical ephemera that have not been cataloged individually. Some of the major categories of pamphlets and ephemera include: broadsides; Connecticut medical institutions: annual reports and ephemera; hospital annual reports; medical school catalogs, addresses and ephemera; nursing school annual reports; national health-related organizations; patent medicine almanacs; patent medicine trade cards and other advertisements; spas and mineral waters; state public health department pamphlets; Yale-New Haven Hospital collection; and biographical information.
The Historical Library has a collection of Objects and Artifacts. The Edward Clark Streeter Collection of Weights and Measures is one of the most comprehensive and extensive collections of its kind in the world. Parts of this collection are on permanent display throughout the Library. The International Society of Antique Scale Collectors have photographed and described the Library’s collection. The library also has medical instruments and artifacts. Most date from the 19th or early 20th century and include surgical kits and individual surgical instruments, obstetric forceps, dissecting kits, microscopes, various diagnostic tools, medicine chests, pharmacy jars, and Chinese medical instruments. The library collection also includes Medical Commemorative Medals, with items dating from the 18th to 20th century.
The Prints, Drawings, Posters, and Paintings collection includes material covering six centuries. The Clements C. Fry Print Collection has fine prints and drawings from the 16th century to the present on medical subjects by artists such as Gillray, the Cruikshanks, Hogarth, and Daumier. The Peter Parker Collection contains manuscripts of the 19th century medical missionary Peter Parker and paintings by the artist Lam-Qua of patients at Canton Hospital with pronounced pathological conditions.
The Library also holds material related to Yale University, including university catalogs and histories, medical school publications, medical school theses, Yale-New Haven Hospital publications and ephemera, photographs, and Connecticut medical publications and ephemera.
The Library also has digitized collections. The collections are searchable. The digitized collections are: Yale School of Medicine Collection; Yale School of Nursing Collection; Iconographie photographique de la Salpêtrière; Medical Instruments & Artifacts; Medical Heritage Library Collection; Harvey Cushing Photographs; Peter Parker Papers; Prints and Drawings; Historical Medical Poster Collection; Civil War Photographs; Lam Qua Paintings Collection; Bookplates; Postcard Collection; Portraits and Likenesses; George E. Palade EM Slides; Tobacco Advertising; Harvey Cushing: a Biography; Pathology Teaching Collection; Books by & about Harvey Cushing; and Yale Medicine Thesis.
The Historical Library offers the Ferenc Gyorgyey Research Travel Grant.
The Library also has in-library and online exhibits. Some of the online exhibits include: “Selling Smoke: Tobacco Advertising and Anti-Smoking Campaigns;” “Arnold Carl Klebs, 1870-1943: Tuberculosis Specialist, Historian and Bibliophile, and a Founder of the Historical Library;” and “Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale: A Yale Tercentennial Exhibit.”