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March 9, 2009

The Archives of Ophthalmology Celebrates 2 Anniversaries140 Years of Continuous Publication and 80 Years of Affiliation With the AMA

Arch Ophthalmol. 2009;127(3):332-334. doi:10.1001/archophthalmol.2008.612

The Archives of Ophthalmology and Otology began publication in New York in 1869. Simultaneously, a German language version was published in Carlsruhe, Germany, as the Archiv für Augen- und Ohrenheilkunde, with the articles sometimes mildly different. The editors were Hermann Knapp, MD (1832-1911), of New York, who practiced both ophthalmology and otology, with greater emphasis on the eye, and Solomon Moos, MD, of Heidelberg, an otologist. In their prospectus to the first issue, they stated that progress in these 2 specialties, especially the invention of the ophthalmoscope at midcentury, had already led to many practical applications and promised still more. Although medicine is international in scope, they remarked, there was no journal devoted to ophthalmology or otology in America; instead, articles concerning the 2 fields were published occasionally in general medical journals. The editors promised to “diffuse knowledge among the medical profession”1 and stimulate scientific investigation. Subscriptions to the new Archives were $7 per year (approximately $125 today) for 2 semiannual issues of about 300 pages each, and the content would be entirely original material. They warned readers to keep up with both fields; because the number of eye specialists had increased markedly during the past 10 years, “it will not be wise for the younger generation to rely with too much confidence on ophthalmic surgery exclusively.”1 The market for the new journal was not large because there were only about 250 individuals with an interest in the eye in the United States, and far less in otology.2