Showing posts with label poison gas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label poison gas. Show all posts

Friday, March 26, 2010

Letter of the day, March 26


War Department
Office of the Surgeon General

March 26, 1919

Circular Letter No. 156

Subject: Museum Specimens (Gas Lesions).

1. It is desired to obtain gross and microscopical specimens from cases who have lived for a considerable time after being gassed. There are now in hospitals many of these soldiers suffering in some cases from the results of this gassing, and also from various other condition.

2. Considerable material has been collected from acute lesions in man and in animals, and a certain amount of material is available showing the subsequent lesions in animals, but no specimens have been received from human sources which can be used to study the final changes and determine what, if any, permanent alterations result from exposure to the gas.

3. Should autopsies occur in any case giving a history of having been gassed, specimens will be carefully preserved and sent to the Army Medical Museum, even though there is apparently no change in the organs referable to the previous gassing. The respiratory tract is most important but blocks of tissue should be sent from each organ. A careful history and protocol will accompany the specimens.

By direction of the Surgeon General:

C.R. Darnall,
Colonel, Medical Corps, USA,
Executive Officer.

Copy for:
Surgeons, Ports of Embarkation,
Commanding Officers, all Base & General Hospitals,
Commandant, Army Medical School,
The Chief Surgeon, S.O.S. American expeditionary Forces.


Saturday, March 6, 2010

Letter of the day, March 6 (1 of 2)

You can see some examples of these medical illustrations on our Flickr site, as well as the Lyster bag, developed by the Colonel Lyster mentioned in the letter, in 1915. The Lyster bag was a means of purifying water with the treatment of calcium hypochlorite and was used for decades for field and camp water treatment.

Yale University
The School of Medicine
Affiliated with the New Haven Hospital
on the
Anthony N. Brady Memorial Foundation

Laboratory of
Pathology and Bacteriology

New Haven, Connecticut
March 6, 1919

Colonel Charles F. Craig,
Army Medical Museum
Washington, D.C.

My Dear Colonel Craig:

I am sending you, under separate cover, four illustrations of the lung in influenza, which were done by artists from the Army Medical Museum. The autopsy numbers of these cases is on the illustration, and there is attached an anatomical diagnosis of the case. I have, besides these four illustrations, eight colored drawings of more or less similar lesions of the respiratory tract in influenza. They are as follows:

Aut. No. 1. Trachea showing an accute hemorrhagic inflammation.
" " 2 &3. Pleural surface and cross section of lobular pneumonia in influenza.
" " 4 &5. Pleural surface and cross section of the lobar type of inflammation.
" " 6. Fibrinopurulent pleurisy
" " 7 &8. Cross sections of subacute and chronic necrotizing and organizing pneumonia.

There are besides these illustrations of influenzal pneumonia, one hundred and thirty-eight gross and microscopic drawings and photo micrographs of the lungs of animals that have died or were killed after exposure to one of the following poisonous gases; chlorine, phosgene, chloropicrin, mustard, cyanogen, chloride, bromide, arsene, organic arsenic compounds, and superpalite.

The monograph which includes these illustrations is in the hands of the Yale Press. A complete list of the illustrations has been furnished to Colonel Lyster of the Chemical Warfare Service, and I have no other list of them to submit at the present time. Of course, it can be made if you feel that is is absolutely necessary.

Very truly yours,
[Major M. Winternitz]

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Poison Gas

Earlier this week ran an article on the 93rd anniversary of the first use of poison gas on the Western Front in World War 1, when the Germans used chlorine gas against French and Algerian troops. The article said that chlorine gas produces a green cloud and a strong odor, giving the victims at least a little advance warning. This made me think of posters we have from World War 2 that warn soldiers of the different smells that gases produce (although I neither know nor wish to know what flypaper smells like):