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This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Trephination is a surgical intervention in which a hole is drilled or scraped into the human skull, exposing the membrane that surrounds the skull in order to treat health problems related to intracranial diseases.  Often referred to as a “burr” hole it relieves pressure beneath the surface.  Hieronymus Braunschweig was a German physician and surgeon in the mid 15th-century who authored several treatises on surgery and anatomy including Dis ist das Buch der Cirurgia which has an engraving depiciting trepanation that we see here.  Countway has an edition by Brunschwig in their Rare Books collection, Dis ist das Buch der Cirurgia : Hantwirckung der Wund Artzny / von Hiero[n]ymo Bru[n]schwig. Strassburg : Johann (Reinhard) Grüninger, 4 July 1497.

By the 20th-century self-trephination was championed by many as a way to increase “brain blood volume” including a Dutch librarian named Bart Huges.  Though Huges attended medical school at the University of Amsterdam he was reportedly refused a degree due to his advocacy of marijuana use.  In 1965 Huges drilled a hole in his own head with a Black and Decker power drill to increase his “cerebral metabolism.”  His theory was that when mankind began to walk upright, our brains drained of blood, and that trephining allows the blood to better flow in and out of the brain, causing a permanent “high.”  To date there is no scientific proof to back up his theory.  He wrote about trephination and other thoughts which have been translated in this edition of The book with the [hole] : autobiography.  There is indeed a hole punched throughout the entire volume.

 

 

 

The book with the [hole] : autobiography / by Bart Huges ; translation and elaboration by Joe Mellen and Amanda Feilding. Amsterdam : F.I.T, 1972. RD529 .H89 1972 can be found at the Countway Library at the Harvard Medical School in Longwood.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Joan Thomas, Rare Book Cataloger at Countway for contributing this post.

Snow vogue

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

The depredations of the drug trade are fertile ground for crime and mystery fiction: pulp, in a word. In the Santo Domingo Collection, these lurid works stand on the shelves alongside opium-inspired poetry and countercultural acid narratives. Pictured here is Snow vogue, written by one Darcy Glinto and published in London by Wells Gardner in 1941. Copies are held at only three other libraries. It’s the tale of Dario, a ruthless gangster who, as the title suggests, gets involved in peddling cocaine. Violence, victimization, and death inevitably ensue. The jacket copy promises Snow vogue to be “just as slick and twice as fast as any other gangster story. That is because Dario was that kind of man.”

The name “Darcy Glinto” is, of course, too good to be true. It’s a pseudonym for Harold Ernest Kelly (1899-1969), an author and freelance journalist who wrote in the crime, sci-fi, and Western genres, among others, under a host of assumed names.

Harold Ernest Kelly. Snow vogue. London: Wells Gardner, Darton & Co., [1941]. EC9.K2965.941s

Thanks to rare book cataloger Ryan Wheeler for contributing this post.

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

 

Les Très Riches Heures du Cannabis is a cannabis lovers must have. Full of colorful illustrations and advice, this book has everything you need to know and more. From descriptions and step by step instructions on how to roll different types of joints to how to make homemade vaporizers, this book has everything.  It is great for someone without any prior knowledge as well as those trying to supplement what they already know.

 

 

 

There are descriptions of growing practices and cultivation tips for the do-it-yourself types and for the more adventurous travel-savvy reader there is even a section on cafes in Amsterdam. Also included in the book are several recipes that include marijuana such as eggs, a spinach side and ice creams and sorbets. The cartoon illustrations are fanciful and over-the-top and reinforce the humorous aspects of this book.

 

 

 

 

 

Attributed to “PhiX”, who has co-authored another book with Jean-Pierre Galland on harvesting marijuana, this book surely makes an excellent addition to any drug related collection. Widener has more books by Jean-Pierre Galland on marijuana, such as Drogues: état des lieux : cannabis, alcool, héroïne, also in the Santo Domingo Collection.

Find this book at Widener Library. Les très riches heures du cannabis / Phix. Paris : Éditions du Lézard, 1996.

 

Thanks to Emma Clement, Santo Domingo Library Assistant, for contributing this post.

(Shock)ing! therapy

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

 

The use of electricity in medical treatment is hardly a new concept, Guillaume Duchenne was a French neurologist and developer of electrotherapy.  Duchenne announced in 1855 that alternating current was more effective than a direct current for electrotherapeutic triggering of muscle contractions.  One of the problems of direct current was the blistering of the skin due to the high voltage needed to stimulate the muscle, as well as the need to stop and restart the current with each contraction.  What is fascinating about this particular 19th-century volume by John Ives are the conditions it claims electricity can cure.  Flatulence, bunions, and chilblains are all listed in the book as complaints that electricity can remediate.  Hiccups and persistent yawning are also included as pesky problems which according to the text can be solved by putting the negative [electrical node] “under the ear and the positive by the seventh rib for five minutes, using a current from four to six cells.”

Current use of electrotherapy is accepted in the field of rehabilitation and the American Physical Therapy Association acknowledges its use in tissue repair, pain management, joint mobility, treatment of neuromuscular dysfunction, as well as other areas.

Electricity as a medicine : and its mode of application / by John Ives. New York : Galvano-Faradic, 1887. RM870 .T91 1888 can be found at the Countway Library at the Harvard Medical School in Longwood.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Joan Thomas, Rare Book Cataloger at Countway for contributing this post.

Atomic emergency

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

When I first looked at this cover I thought it was some sort of science-fiction title, but upon further inspection it is actually a guide on what to do in the event of an atomic emergency.  The atomic age is often considered to be the period of history after the first atomic bomb was detonated and after the bombings of Japan during World War II.  During this time the whole world was rushing to possess this new nuclear technology and it raised a lot of very real fears about what could happen and what the fallout would be.  This French publication outlines what they believed to be appropriate actions, helpful tips, and detailed figures in the event of an atomic emergency during the 1950s.

For example Do. Not. Panic.  Or as this caption states there could be a stampede and subsequent trampling.    Other illustrations display the common equipment one might see during this type of emergency.   Another figure outlines protective measures one should take if they are surprised by an explosion.  They are counseled to jump behind a resistant wall while hiding their faces and hands to avoid burns.  Or if possible crouch in a corner of the room to minimize any exposure from the blast.

To learn more check out Atomique secours / Charles André Gibrin. Paris, Charles-Lavauzelle [1953] which can be found at the Widener Library.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager for contributing this post.

Dr. Rose’s Sanitarium

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

For the Scientific Treatment and Cure of the Alcohol, Morphine, Opium, Chloral, and Cocaine Habits!

Designed especially for the treatment of drug and alcohol abuse this pamphlet advertises the virtues of Dr. Rose’s Sanitarium.  Located in bucolic Connecticut something that sets this institution apart is that it actually had a contract with a patient that guaranteed a cure.  The pamphlet gives a general introduction to the location and amenities, including steam heat, gas lighting, a billiards room, and a gymnasium.  The cost for morphine treatment- $25 a week with room and board extra.  What if you are a lady patient?  You will be guaranteed a lady attendant and the excellent care of a “beloved” doctor with an excellent track record of success. 

Still not a believer?  There are a number of testimonials included to convince you. 

Dr. Rose’s Sanitarium, South Windham, Conn., for the scientific treatment and cure of the alcoholic, morphine, opium, chloral and cocaine habits.  Utica, N.Y. : L.C. Childs & Son’s, Print., [1896?].  HV5281.W76 D7 can be found at the Countway Library at the Harvard Medical School in Longwood.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Joan Thomas, Rare Book Cataloger at Countway for contributing this post.

Ba(rnum) humbug

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Newly represented among the authors in the Santo Domingo Collection is the showman and author P.T. Barnum. Shown here is an 1866 copy of Barnum’s survey/memoir The humbugs of the world, translated into French as Les blagues de l’univers. A humbug, of course, is anything intended to mislead or anyone in the business of misrepresentation. The book, then, is a survey of societal and historical humbugs ranging from spiritualists and ghost stories to adulterers of food and conniving businessmen, accompanied by Barnum’s personal reminiscences as a humbug himself.

The volume bears the bookplate of collector Charles de Mandre and the autograph of collector Jules Bobin; more exciting, however, is a two-page letter written by Barnum and bound into the front. The letter is dated 16 July 1858, and its recipient is the French entertainer and philanthropist Alexandre Vattemare. Vattemare was himself a fascinating figure: trained as a surgeon, he made his fortune as a ventriloquist (performing as Monsieur Alexandre) after his habit of ventriloquizing corpses during surgical studies cost him his medical diploma. Once his fortune was made, Vattemare spent the latter portion of his life collecting rare books and objects, and advocating for public libraries and for cultural and literary interchange. He had a hand in the founding of the Boston Public Library, and his cultural-exchange system, by which books, coins, mineral samples, and other cultural and natural artifacts were exchanged between library systems internationally, led to today’s interlibrary loan.

It is on the subject of mineral specimens that Barnum writes to Vattemare in the letter: from its content, it originally enclosed two photographs of a particularly large rock crystal harvested from a Mexican silver mine and on display at an American museum. There is something of the persuasive carnival barker in Barnum’s tone when, insisting upon the specimen’s authenticity, he assures Vattemare that ‘photography cannot lie’.

P.T. Barnum. Les blagues de l’univers. Paris: Achille Faure, 1866. AZ999.B313 1866.

Thanks to rare book cataloger Ryan Wheeler for contributing this post.

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Among the occupations on Victor Segalen’s multifarious résumé are French naval doctor, anthropologist, ethnographer, literary critic, linguist, and poet. The latter most concerns us here: pictured is Segalen’s Stèles, a collection of prose poems presented as translations of imaginary Chinese stone monuments. To write it, Segalen drew from his residency in China from 1909 to 1914, a period during which he served as personal doctor to the son of the first president of the Republic of China. Each of the “stèles” is headed with a literary phrase in Chinese; these are either taken from classical literature or the monuments that inspired the poems, or composed by Segalen. The poems deal with a range of emotional and spiritual subjects, while hewing to a formal style imitative of Chinese inscriptions.

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What’s for dinner?

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Feeling a bit peckish?  Why not try a delicious dish featuring Boletus edulis, which are fleshy mushroom-like fungi which have tubes in place of gills.  They are often characterized as being “spongy underneath.”

 

To make one version of French Crepes a la Bordelaise simply cut the caps of Boletus edulis into 1/2 inch thick slices and remove the tubes if they are soft.  Season with salt and pepper and put them into boiling olive oil in a deep frying pan.  Cook until golden brown, drain, and then serve with a little butter, chopped parsley, and garlic (presumably within a crepe).

Another popular edible fungi is Lactarius deliciousus or more commonly known as the Saffron Milk Cap.  The cap is a brick-orange color and when it is broken the “milk” is saffron colored.

The first known illustration of a fungus is generally considered to be L. deliciousus which was preserved in a fresco in Pompeii.  It is still popular in cuisine today throught Western Europe, particularly in Spain and Italy.

Edible fungi, by John Ramsbottom … With colour plates by Rose Ellenby. London, New York, [Penguin books limited] 1943. QK617 .R3.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager for contributing this post.

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

A particularly sumptuous volume from the collection of Gérard Nordmann is today’s Santo Domingo Collection feature. This 1938 publication of Poèmes inédits (Unpublished poems) by Pierre Louÿs was limited to 109 numbered copies; this is copy 5. Louÿs wrote frequently on sensuality in general, and on lesbians in particular; in keeping with these themes, the volume is illustrated with a series of erotic engravings by Edouard Chimot. This copy features an additional suite of test prints in various states, as well as ten of Chimot’s original drawings. Rarer still are a full twenty pages of Louÿs’s manuscript poems, mounted to leaves at the beginning of the volume.

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Death caps

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Once you have made the fateful choice to eat a Death cap it starts out slowly, there is no discomfort for the first twelve hours then you have abdominal pain with vomiting, diarrhea, and an extreme thirst.  After two days there is a period of quiet where you show no symptoms, however they will come back even more intensely until, “…the nervous system is gradually paralysed, the liver degenerates, there is delirium, collapse and death.”  According to Poisonous fungi by John Ramsbottom, Death caps, or Amanita phalloides, are responsible for over 90% of recorded death by fungus poisoning (at least in 1945).  If you have only eaten a small amount it is possible that you can survive, but you will have a slow and long recovery.

Amanita muscaria is commonly found in the woods and often appears as a “typical” depiction of a mushroom in illustrations, films, and even as toys.  The poison is mainly located in the cap, but what is interesting is that it almost never causes death in healthy people.  If one has ingested it they may experience a bit of delirium and hallucinations, as well as intestinal disturbance.  This may be followed by an intense stupor and upon awakening one may remember nothing.  Scandinavian tradition credits this mushroom with causing the Vikings to go berserk.  It has also been eaten in Siberia on occasions where a high emotional state is desired. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Now that we have taken a look at what not to eat out in the forest, check the blog next week when we take a look at Ramsbottom’s volume of Edible fungi.

Poisonous fungi / by John Ramsbottom. With colour plates, by Rose Ellenby. London ; New York : Penguin Books Limited, 1945. QK617. R36 1945.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager for contributing this post.

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Today from the Santo Domingo Collection, we have a handsomely designed volume: this edition of La main enchantée (The enchanted hand), a fantasy story by the French author and poet Gérard Labrunie, who wrote under the pen name Gérard de Nerval. (Students of French literary biography may best remember Nerval for taking his pet lobster, Thibault, for walks in the Palais Royal gardens.) Nerval originally published this story in the newspaper Le cabinet de lecture in 1832, under the title “La main de gloire”. In it, a timorous clothier named Eustache Bouteroue seeks to triumph in an impending duel by putting an enchantment on one of his hands, then attempts to renege on payment for said enchantment, with predictably dire results.

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This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Médecine et pharmacopée en Chine is comprised of three volumes that are each bound with colored cord inside an illustrated paper cover.  Published in early 20th-century France the volumes appear to explore medicine and pharmacology in China.  Each individual volume begins with a beautiful color illustration depicting a topic related to Medicine, Pharmacy and Therapeutics, or Medical Superstitions.

One of the illustrations depicts the practice of acupuncture.  It is interesting that the scientific benefits of acupuncture are still debated in present day.  Though the exact origins of acupuncture are disputed most typically agree that it was being practiced during the Han Dynasty in China during the 2nd century.

One of the difficulties in proving the effectiveness of acupuncture is that it is difficult to run a placebo control group since the very action involves piercing the skin with a needle.  More traditional Western medicine has cautiously agreed that acupuncture can be effective for certain conditions though they admit they cannot exactly explain why it works.  Regardless of proven scientific fact many people believe in acupuncture’s ability to relieve nausea and chronic pain and popularity of the practice has greatly increased in the past 20 years.

 

 

The third volume explores various medical superstitions that were commonly used in China.  This illustration depicts a man using a rooster to help set a woman’s fracture.  I think the idea is that using the rooster blood will assist in the healing process.

To learn more the Médecine et pharmacopée en Chine. [France] : Editions des Laboratoires du Mictasol, [192-?].  R601 .M48 can be found at the Countway Library at the Harvard Medical School in Longwood.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Joan Thomas, Rare Book Cataloger at Countway for contributing this post.

 

You shall not Pass!

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Lowell Thomas was an American writer, traveler, and broadcaster that is often known as the person who made Lawrence of Arabia famous.  This graphic depiction of an Afghan man is from the dust jacket of Beyond Khyber Pass into forbidden Afghanistan a book by Thomas about his travels and observations in the 1920s of Afghanistan.  Beyond Khyber Pass was no easy feat to write since it took Thomas two years just to gain access to the country itself for as he states in the book “…our chances of getting to Kabul seemed to be considerably less than those of a camel’s passing through the eye of a needle.”  Just as they were about to give up hope the intervention of his Majesty Amanullah Khan, Amir of Afghanistan meant success for their endeavor.

Historically Khyber Pass was an important trade route and once an integral part of the Silk Road, which connected East to West and was highly significant in the developing civilization of China, Europe, and India.  Khyber Pass goes through the Spin Ghar mountains that connect Afghanistan and current day Pakistan, which at the time was British controlled India.

As the title indicates Thomas travels beyond the pass and explores the country and notoriously isolated people of Afghanistan.  The journey throughout the book is filled with both engaging writing, as well as reproductions of photographs taken by both Thomas and his companion Harry Chase.  To learn more about this fascinating cultural exploration look at Beyond Khyber Pass into forbidden Afghanistan. Illustrated with many original photographs taken by Harry A. Chase and the author. New York, Grosset & Dunlap [1925].

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager for contributing this post.

We are very pleased to announce the launch of the Emily Dickinson Archive, http://edickinson.org, an open-access site that brings together nearly all of Emily Dickinson’s extant poetry manuscripts. A collaborative effort across many institutions, the resource provides readers with images of manuscripts held in multiple libraries and archives, and also offers an array of transcriptions of Dickinson’s poems and digital tools intended to foster exploration and scholarship.

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It’s a dog’s life

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

  Stephen Huneck was not only an American author but a carving artist, painter, and furniture maker.  Originally from Sudbury, Massachusetts he began working in wood when he lived in Rochester, Vermont.  He was ostensibly discovered when an art dealer bought a carved angel out of the back of his truck for $1000.  After a near death experience with respiratory distress syndrome he began work on the Dog Chapel in St. Johnsbury, Vermont.  An homage to dogs the chapel has both human sized doors and a dog door, as well as carved wooden dogs on the pews and stained glass windows of dogs.  My Dog’s Brain is about his beloved black lab Sally, which recounts a glimpse into the psyche of a dog and how she spends her days.      Huneck credited his recovery after his near death experience to his dog, as well as the process of making the woodcuts for the book.  

Tragically Huneck committed suicide in 2010.  Art pieces of Huneck’s can be found at the Smithsonian and the Museum of American Folk Art.  To look at more of the gorgeous illustrations the book can be found through the Fine Arts Library.  My dog’s brain / by Stephen Huneck.  New York, N.Y., U.S.A. : Viking Studio, c1997. NE1112.H86 A4 1997 .

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Leo Evangelista Cataloging Specialist at 625, for contributing this post.

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Description of the Retreat, an institution near York, for insane persons of the Society of Friends is a volume by Samuel Tuke who was a Quaker and mental-health reformer in early 19th-century England.  Tuke believed in this new concept of moral treatement of the insane in which the treatment focused on rewarding good behavior.  The text is quite fascinating and touches on information about what types of rooms patients had, their medical treatments and even their diet.

They abscribed to the theory that a full belly can quiet those that have mania and trouble sleeping at night.  They were also looking for ways to have patients safely use a knife and fork instead of being forced to eat with a spoon. 

The subject of cold versus warm baths is also examined in length by Tuke.  He states that patients that suffer from melancholia and were treated with a warm bath have an unusually high recovery rate.  Unfortunately a warm bath only seems to aggravate those with mania.  Cold baths are said to be unfavorable in treating either melancholia or mania, which is quite a departure for the norms of the time.  Tuke also wrote Practical hints on the construction and economy of pauper lunatic asylums; including instructions to the architects who offered plans for the Wakefield Asylum which can be found at the Houghton Library.

To learn more about the historical treatment of the insane look to Description of the Retreat, an institution near York, for insane persons of the Society of Friends : containing an account of its origin and progress, the modes of treatment, and a statement of cases / by Samuel Tuke ; with an elevation and plans of the building. York, Printed for W. Alexander, and sold by him; sold also by M.M. and E. Webb, Bristol; and by Darton, Harvey and Co., William Phillips, and W. Darton, London, 1813 RC450.E3 T812 1813 at the Countway Library at the Harvard Medical School in Longwood.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager and Joan Thomas, Rare Book Cataloger at Countway for contributing this post.

This past spring, Houghton Library collaborated with the Emily Dickinson Museum in Amherst and the North Bennet Street School in Boston to create exact reproductions of the writing desk and bureau originally in Emily Dickinson’s bedroom in the Homestead. Since 1950, the two iconic pieces have been part of the Emily Dickinson Collection at the Library, the gift of Gilbert Montague, Class of 1901.

As part of the project, the Library asked Sean Fisher of Robert Mussey Associates furniture conservation to do detailed condition reports on the two pieces. We suspected that the finishes were later than Dickinson’s lifetime; and there were some minor condition problems with the bureau. This would be an opportunity to learn more about the furniture.

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Gigantic bats in Space!

This post is part of an ongoing series featuring items from the newly acquired Santo Domingo collection.

Voyage dans la lune avant 1900 is an extraordinary French children’s book that is composed primarily of color lithographs by Herold & Cie., which are based on the original designs of A. de Ville d’Avray’s.  Almost nothing about the author A. de Ville d’Avray is known.  In his Preface he says that he made the book for his children “sheet by sheet during the long evenings of winter.”  It was published around 1892 and is considered by some to be the first science fiction book.  The text features two characters M. Baboulifiche and his faithful servant, Papavoine.   They transport themselves in a hot air ballon to the moon, but after crashing face a number of monstrous and surreal creatures.  Once they are able to escape some dangerous situations on the moon they are taken by gigantic bats to Saturn and end up suffering several versions of death, including being eaten by flying lizards.  In the end we discover that it was all a terrible dream as Baboulifiche wakes up safe in his home.    Voyage dans la lune avant 1900 / par A. De Ville D’Avray. Paris : Librairie Furne, Jouvet & Cie., [1892]. PN56.V6 V4 1892. can be found at Houghton Library along with many other more contemporary science fiction titles in their Science Fiction Collection.

Thanks to Alison Harris, Santo Domingo Project Manager, and Ryan Wheeler, Rare Book Cataloger, for contributing this post.

 

In her formative years, the American poet Emily Dickinson’s interests centered on the study of voice and especially piano, for which she displayed considerable accomplishment and ambition. Her correspondence supplies the background for these activities while the contents of her music book provides a revealing perspective on just how assiduously and enthusiastically she collected, listened to, and performed the music of her time.

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