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June 3, 1974

The Story of Medicine in America

JAMA. 1974;228(10):1302. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230350072046

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The history of American medicine is recorded in many books, each one of which possesses individual distinctiveness. Francis Packard's The Story of Medicine in the United States (1901) presented accurate detail up to the days of Crawford Long, and with special emphasis on the colonial period. In 1958, Felix Marti-Ibanez offered a symposium, History of American Medicine, consisting of expert studies on specific epochs and movements. In 1966, Richard Shryock brought together in his Medicine in America separate essays of merit that interlace several disciplines and stress social movements.

Now Marks, a lay science-writer, and Beatty, a medical bibliographer and librarian, have written a popular book beginning with Jamestown and moving rapidly over 350 years down to the health maintenance organization of today. The presentation has abundant biographic detail with good descriptions of leaders like Cotton Mather, James Thatcher, Daniel Drake, Joseph Goldberger, Alexis Carrel, and George Hevesy. The accounts