Thursday, November 25, 2010
Tuesday Nov. 25th 
My dear Doctor-
I have been looking over my Husband’s private letters but find none of the correspondence of which you spoke. Indeed I may say there is none of this scientific correspondence among the letters I have.
They are from many people and on divers subjects but with the exception of a few from Dr. Maddox on photo-micrographs, and some from Gen’l Cox on microscopic work and one or two from a German Doctor (Munnich the name I think) they are all more or less private letters.
I can send you the list of his library books and I think it is complete. Also a list of the various Societies he belonged to. But as to Diplomas or Certificates I can find nothing. I have one or two medals conferred upon him and all of his commissions.
I fancy you will find all of the letters you spoke of in his “letter book” at the office and as for the Diplomas +c if they are at the office, do you not think I ought to have them?
I have looked over the pamphlets and have quite a number ready to send you, if you will be so good as to dispose of them.
The other bound books I think you have a list of and I can send them to you at any time whenever you may want them.
With kindest regards,
Yours very truly
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Deft Surgery for a Painting Under the Scalpel
By KAREN ROSENBERG
Published: July 29, 2010
An exhibition at the Philadelphia Museum of Art shows Thomas Eakins’s “Gross Clinic,” an 1875 masterpiece that has recently been restored.
In the article, Rosenberg discusses the paintings history especially the initial public hanging of it:
The current show’s first gallery contains photographs and ephemera from the Centennial Exhibition, a world’s fair that included the first historical survey of American art. Much of this material is filler. (Do we really need to see the shareholders’ certificate or Eakins’s exhibitor’s pass?) More to the point are the interior shots of the exhibition sites, which show how “The Gross Clinic” made its debut.
The selection committee found the painting too visceral for the main art show, a stuffy, salon-style affair in Memorial Hall, but with help from Dr. Gross, Eakins was able to display it in a model Army-post hospital elsewhere on the fairgrounds. Photographs show “The Gross Clinic” prominently featured at the end of a long row of beds, framed by dark curtains.
Here's a photograph of that "model Army-post hospital" which featured exhibits on military medicine, and was partially curated by Dr. J.J. Woodward.
1876 Centennial Exposition, Philadelphia, PA, Army Medical Department Exhibit - 001 Hospital front view
1876 Centennial Exposition, Philadelphia, PA, Army Medical Department Exhibit - 005 Hospital ward 1 from southern end. [Note the beds with mosquito netting, the enlargements of photomicrographs on the side walls and especially The Gross Clinic painting by Thomas Eakins on the far wall.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Surgeon General’s Office
Washington City, D.C.
July 23d 1866
Prof. H.L. Smith
Yours of the 19th came duly to hand and I thank you very much for the growing slides. They are very ingenious and I shall value them the more as being your work. You know that the whole energy of the microscopic labor under my direction is directed towards Pathology and I only turned to the Diatomacea as test objects in developing the photographic process which we are using with the most complete success on the tissues. Still as I feel we have mastered the whole matter of microphotography, I should be glad to photograph a few more diatoms by way of showing those who are not interested in Pathology how good and reliable our process is and of inducing them to use it also. Should you therefore care to take the trouble of sending us a few specimens of carefully selected single diatoms for the Museum, we would in the course of the summer and fall undertake their photography, and cheerfully furnish you copies of our results. I think Wales really a clever young man. He has made me a number of pieces of apparatus, which with rare exceptions have given perfect satisfaction. His photographic 4/10, 1/8 and amplified leave little to be desired further. I have just received from him a 1/5 for photography, which however I have not tried. All of these lenses are made on Rutherford’s formula and can only be satisfactorily used for vision when illuminated with violet light. He is now making me a 1/16 on the same principle, from which I expect great things. He has improved enormously since I first knew him. In fact in /62 I saw lenses of his in the hands of various parties and regarded them as very inferior. It was not until 1864 that he began to make work of the highest class and I do not think that at present he would claim even to have made a 1/16 of the best quality. Barnard objects to his 4/10 that it is really a ¼ and so perhaps it is, but it is the habit of nearly all opticians to misstate the power of their lenses and I find his run quite parallel in nomenclature to those of Smith + Beck and other English opticians.
I am, Sincerely,
signedd. J.J. Woodward
Bvt. Maj. and Ass’t. Surg. U.S.A.