A Brief History of the Pharmacy in the United States

Today’s status of the profession and those who practice it results from an evolution over thousands of years. Introduction The statement that “What is past is prologue” [1] appears on the base of Robert Aitken’s sculpture “The Future” outside the National Archives Building in Washington, DC. This is to remind us that we should study[…]

The Origins and Meanings of Pharmacy Symbols

The London Clinic / Photo by Ben Gilbert, Wellcome Collection, Creative Commons What have snakes, unicorns and crocodiles got to do with pharmacies? Modern pharmaceutical signs have a long history going back to the Greek gods. Wellcome Trust / 11.09.2017 While alchemists used secret symbols to disguise their chemical formulations, pharmacists used the tools of[…]

Friedrich Haberlandt’s Failed Vision: Soy in European Food Cultures, 1873–1945

The “age of extremes” from 1914 to 1945 created renewed demand for cheap supplies of protein. One of the attractions at the 1873 Viennese World’s Fair was the exhibition of the Japanese Empire. The exhibits included Japanese flora, among them soybean plants. The soybean had been part of Japanese and other East Asian food cultures[…]

500 Years of Strange Diets

A medieval kitchen / British Library, Public Domain If your latest diet resolution is already under strain, take comfort from knowing that there’s a long history of people monitoring what they munch. By Dr. Alice White / 01.10.2018 Historian and Digital Editor Wellcome Collection Sure, Doc, I’ll Give Ya Patients! The physicians friend, Charles Williams /[…]

Interpreting “Physick”: The Familiar and Foreign Eighteenth-Century Body

Eighteenth-century medical practitioners faced menaces like cholera, dysentery, measles, mumps, rubella, smallpox, syphilis, typhus, typhoid, tuberculosis, and yellow fever. Introduction Aspirin. It’s inevitable. When asked what medicine they’d want most if they lived in the eighteenth century, the visitors will struggle in silence for few moments. Then, someone will offer, “Aspirin?” Sometimes it’s delivered with[…]