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History of Medicine Collections,
Duke University,
Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscripts Library

Duke University, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Box 90185
Durham, North Carolina 27708
United States
Rachel Ingold, Curator
(919) 684-8549
1 919-684-8549
Fax: (919) 660-5934

The History of Medicine Collections began in 1931 with the acquisition of the library of the Georgia Medical Society and reached an important new level with the gift of the Trent Collection in 1956. Today the collections, which cover the history of the health sciences, number 33,000 volumes and consist of monographs, serials, manuscripts, medical instruments, artifacts, prints, photographs, and ephemera. SERVICES: Reference in person, by letter/e-mail or phone; reproduction services available. HOURS: 9:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. Monday - Yhursday, 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m Friday, 1)00 p.m. - 5L00 p.m. Saturday. Please check website as hours are subject to change during University holidays and breaks. Newsletter, Trent Associates Report, published twice a year. Exhibition catalogue The Physician's Art (1999) available from the Duke University Press. The Four Seasons of Human Life (2002) distributed by Balogh for Erasmus Publishing. Digitally scanned photographs and illustrations from the collections accessible via the Library web page at the address above.


Incunabula: 35 titles; 16th century: 500 titles; 17th century: 1,000 titles; 18th century: 2,000 titles; 19th century: 8,125 titles. Strengths in pediatrics, obstetrics/gynecology, materia medica, 19th century pamphlets, anesthesia, human sexuality, vivisection, yellow fever, and psychiatry. Noteworthy are the Vesalius editions, Benjamin Rush monographs and manuscripts, Edward Jenner manuscripts, and Osler letters. Outstanding non-book items: apothecary jars; 17th-18th century ivory anatomical manikins from Continent; 16th century ivory skeleton.

Subject Strengths:
History of Anatomy; History of Anesthesiology and Anesthesia; History of Botany; History of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases; History of Gynecology and Obstetrics; History of Medicine; History of Reproductive Health; History of Vivisection; Materia Medica
Last Updated:
04 Nov 2011