Medical instruments

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Medical instruments

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Medical instruments

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Medical instruments

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D. H. Rankin Medical Artifacts Collection

  • MS 160
  • Collection
  • 1800-2000

The D.H. Rankin Medical Artifacts Collection was donated by Dr. Rankin, a family physician in Austin, Texas. Dr. Rankin had a personal interest in hearing related devices and early twentieth century quack medical devices. Dr. Rankin acquired artifacts from online auction sites, auction houses, and catalogs. Receipts and sale information for some items are included in the control folder.

Highlights of the collection include bloodletting tools, vibratory quack medical devices, drug bottles with original medicines, and alcohol prescriptions during the United States prohibition era.

The collections of materials are dated from 1700 through 1950. The bulk of materials are from the late nineteenth to early twentieth century. The materials are predominantly from the United States with a few outliers from Great Britain, China, Mexico, and Denmark.

The collection totals 36 cubic feet and 20 boxes. Many objects are oversized and thus not stored in any box. The majorities of artifacts are stored in their original boxes and complete with promotional material where applicable. The condition of objects are, on average, very good. Damage is usually only present on the original boxes. Drugs and liquids have been saved and are stored separately in water tight bags. Care should be taken when unpacking boxes and unwrapping items as some items are sharp and/or have mechanical blades.

Subjects: medical quackery, early medicine, medical realia, rare books

Rankin, Douglas H.