Medical, Surgical, and Dental Antiques

Fine Medical and Scientific Antiques for Sale

Lawrence, Kansas

Sale Catalogue

Below is a listing of antique medical and scientific instruments that are currently for sale. Please feel free to send an e-mail for additional details and to place an order.  

Click on the thumbnails for enlargements and additional views.

Sale Terms:

All descriptions are written to the best of this dealer's knowledge. 

Minimum charge for shipping and handling is $15.00. 

Items are shipped insured, subject to shipping agency limits.  International buyers assume all liabilities, fees, etc, resulting from export and import customs declaration, clearance, and other international trade requirements.  


 All pictures and text are copyrighted 2015 A. Peck.  All rights reserved.


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 Recent Sales Additions


  1.  An antique Civil War amputation and trephination set by Gemrig, Philadelphia.  Most of the antique surgical instruments are marked with the Gemrig name and the tourniquet has an 1859 date molded into the buckle.  The case is very fine and the red lining is bright.




 2.  A well-made sterling silver Gibson's patent medicine spoon with the upper handle hand-engraved: C. Gibson, Inventor, / 1 Bishopsgate St. Wenthian.  The Gibson medicine spoon was invented by Charles Gibson in 1827;  he was given a Society of Arts award  for its design in 1828.  To read an 1842 description of this special spoon, please see this link (bottom of p. 377 and the top of p. 378).  Note that one advantage offered by Gibson's medicine spoon was the placement of bad tasting medicines, such as castor oil, to the back of the tongue and beyond the taste buds.  The London hallmarks are those of Charles Gibson, himself, and date the antique medicine spoon to 1828, which is also the year that his silver mark was registered on 21 February.  The Gibson spoon was made by various companies over the next 100 years, but here is an outstanding example by the inventor in an early year of production.

medicine spoon, Gibson's spoon, 1828, closed.jpg (50715 bytes)

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  3.   A c. 1860 oil on canvas portrait d'apparat of Dr. George P. Cammann (1804-1863), a prominent New York City physician and the inventor of the first practical and commercially viable binaural stethoscope.  An eponymous Dr. Cammann's Stethoscope is shown in the right hand of Dr. Cammann.  The stethoscope depicted in the painting is Cammann's initial model of the 1850s.  The books on the table are titled:  LAENNEC; STOKES; and ALLISON...all giants in the fields of auscultation and stethoscopy.  The Memoir of George P. Cammann, M.D., may be read online.  This remarkable painting is attributed to the artist Thomas Hicks (1823-1890), one of New York City's leading portrait painters and a member of the National Academy of Design.  Abraham Lincoln (twice), Charles Dickens, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Edwin Booth, and Harriet Beecher Stowe are a few of the luminaries who posed for the masterful portrait painter Thomas HicksEx New York Academy of Medicine.  SOLD


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  4.   An English c. 1730 antique trephine set with fine gull wing trephine.  The bone disk forceps elevator is that of Dr. Samuel Sharp (1709-1778), FRS, who was an accomplished surgeon at Guy's Hospital, London.  This rare antique neurosurgical kit is thought to have been made by the surgical instrument maker Edward Stanton, At the Saw and Crown, in Lombard Street, London, who was active in the 1730s-40s.


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neurosurgery, gull-wing trephine set, c 1735, gullwing trephine detail.jpg (59799 bytes)

  5.  An important c. 1819 first model antique Laennec monaural stethoscope that is ~32 cm / ~12.5" long.  The tube was turned from a single piece of wood and the threads work perfectly.  The plug fits both fully and snugly into the throat of the female-threaded section.  This iconic Laennec stethoscope is by all measures a remarkable example.  SOLD


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  6.  An exquisite and magnificent set of  antique phrenology calipers made by IR (James Redpath or John Robb) and hallmarked three times for Edinburgh, 1825.  The case is engraved on the lid:  To / GEORGE COMBE, Esqr. / FROM / Ladies who attended his Lectures / On / PHRENOLOGY, / IN / 1825 & 1826.   The arc is further engraved:  To George Combe Esqr. Ladies who attended his Classes of 1825 & 1826.  The instrument is assembled from four pieces.  Note the decorated ball finial on one caliper tip for placing within the ear to serve as a standard point of measurement.  For a biography of the phrenologist George Combe (1788-1858), please see this link.  A nearly identical antique craniometer is pictured in Combe's book, Elements of Phrenology, 1824.  This may have been the maker's model.  Combe remarks that such a set can be made so that it comes-apart for fitting into a small pocket case.  SOLD   

phrenology, calipers, George Combe, portrait, 1836.jpg (83849 bytes) (46809 bytes)

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  7.  William Cowper, Anatomia corporum humanorum centum et quatuordecim tabulis ... amplius explicata, multique novis anatomicis inventis, chirurgicisque observationibus aucta a Guilielmo Cowper, Nunc primum latinitate donata. Curante Gulielmo Dundass, Brittano M.D. Leiden, Langerak, 1739. 1st Latin edition. Folio with 114 plates.








  8.  A resplendent antique dental instrument set made for the care of His Royal Highness Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, Duke of Saxony (1819-1861), the husband of Queen Victoria.  The set was crafted in England and dates to the 1840s.  The 6 steel scalers have mother-of-pearl handles with gold ajouré and chased mounts.  The mouth mirror is on a swing frame and has an agate handle.  The Saxon crown, a major element in Prince Albert's coat-of-arms and regalia, is featured as a gold finial on each scaler.  Though unmarked, the skillful workmanship of the Victorian Age goldsmiths Charles Rawlings and William Summers, London, is discernible.  Prince Albert's senior dentists, from his marriage to Queen Victoria in 1840 to his death in 1861, were Alexander Nasmyth (1840-1846), Edwin Saunders (1846-1861), and James Robinson (1849-1861).  Nasmyth became Surgeon-Dentist to Prince Albert in 1840.  He and Saunders were later successive appointees to the post of Surgeon-Dentist-in-Ordinary to Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.  Robinson was gazetted Surgeon-Dentist to His Royal Highness Prince Albert  in 1849.  Robinson, who on 19 December 1846 was the first to use anesthesia in a medical procedure in Britain, shared a common interest with the future Prince Consort in the then new field of anesthetics.  Two similar dental sets, believed to have been used by Saunders, are linked to Queen Victoria and to the young Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII.  Queen Victoria's set, bearing Rawlings and Summers hallmarks and dated 1846, is on display at the National Museum of Dentistry, Baltimore, while the British Dental Association Museum, London, holds the set of the Prince of Wales.  These three regal scaling sets are at the apogee of 19th century opulent dental instruments.



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