Doctor's Bags : Carrying everything the doctor needs to diagnose and treat the sick and injured when making a house call.

In the early 18th century, many doctors carried their instruments in their pockets. Since there were few instruments available to doctors, there was no need for carrying a bag. As more medical instruments and medicines were developed, doctors just did not have enough pockets to carry everything needed to treat patients, resulting in the development of "The Doctor's Bag". An excellent example of a Revolutionary War era doctor's chest is on exhibit at the EHMHF Burle Museum. This mahogany chest includes the original glass medicine jars, and although now empty, includes a hidden rear compartment used to store poisons.

The collection at Edward Hand Medical Heritage Foundation includes over twenty doctor's bags spaning nearly 200 years. These range from the wooden medical chest from the mid 18th century to several from the mid 19th to the mid 20th centuries. Many still contain the original medical instruments and medicines that the doctor used to care for his patients.

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Doctor's Bags