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History of Medicine: Home


Himmelfarb Library's collection focuses on the most accurate, up-to-date health sciences information. But we also recognize the importance of studying the past, which gives us greater insight into how we arrived at the current state of medicine. This guide provides links to resources to help you begin your research. 

For more support in historical or archival research, we recommend reaching out to our colleagues at Gelman Library.

A timeline of major figures in medical history

Hippocrates (c. 460 BC - c. 370 BC, physician); Bian Que (c. 407 BC - c. 310 BC, physician); Zhang Zhongjing (150-219, physician & pharmacologist); Avicenna (980-1037, physician & philosopher; Paracelsus (c. 1493-1541, physician & philosopher); Andreas Vesalius (1514-1564, anatomist); William Harvey (1578-1657), physician; Edward Jenner (1749-1823), physician & vaccinologist; Florence Nightingale (1820-1910), nurse & statistician; Clara Barton (1821-1912), nurse; Elizabeth Blackwell (1821-1910), physician; Louis Pasteur (1822-1895), chemist & microbiologist; Joseph Lister (1827-1912), surgeon; Sigmund Freud (1856-1939), psychologist; Alexander Fleming (1881-1955), physician & microbiologist; Jonas Salk (1914-1995), virologist; Christiaan Barnard (1922-2001), surgeon

Designed by Rachel Brill on Canva

Himmelfarb Health History Blog Posts

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Himmelfarb Tools


Himmelfarb's Antiracism in Healthcare guide provides information on diversity and disparities in medical history.