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The Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary originated through the initiative of two young physicians of Boston, Dr. Edward Reynolds and Dr. John Jeffries, in 1824. Both had studied in London at Moorfields, founded some years earlier, in 1805, and were much impressed by what they saw there. In an address delivered in 1850, Dr. Reynolds stated that he had been influenced in the founding of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary by the fact that one of its founders (himself) had the happiness of restoring a beloved father's sight by an operation for cataract. The tender relationship in this case of the surgeon and patient became extensively known among the small population then comprising the community; it brought to his observation a large number of patients with diseases of the eye and soon revealed the fact that the poor and laboring classes are peculiarly liable to these diseases—a fact now
Posey WC. A Brief History of the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary and of the Howe Laboratory of Ophthalmology.. Arch Ophthalmol. 1934;11(3):579–580. doi:10.1001/archopht.1934.00830100201016