The nation's first hospital has created an exhibition featuring medical and botanical texts from the 18th and early 19th century. The exhibit, “Flower to Pharmacy,” is housed at the Pennsylvania Hospital Historic Collections in Philadelphia. The illustrations are beautiful and the hand-written lecture notes from medical students are fun to decipher.
“For them to say something will kill you immediately, probably means it was pretty harsh,” said curator and archivist Stacey Peeples. “Given the amount of enemas and purgatives these people were taking. It had to be really bad. We like to call it “heroic medicine,” that idea that the physician will go to any means to cure you, even if meant killing you.”