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Maker(s):Bell, William H. (attributed to)
Culture:American (1830-1910)
Title:Specimen No. 2749. Right Humerus and Elbow, Necrosis of the Entire Humerus Following Gunshot Fracture of the Epiphysis
Date Made:ca. 1863
Materials:albumen print
Place Made:North America; United States; District of Columbia: Washington
Measurements:image: 8 x 8 1/2 in.; 20.32 x 21.59 cm
Accession Number:  AC 1992.33
Credit Line:Purchase with Richard Templeton (Class of 1931) Photography Fund
Museum Collection:  Mead Art Museum at Amherst College

Label Text:
William H. Bell fought in the Union Army at Antietam and Gettysburg before becoming chief photographer at the Army Medical Museum (now the National Museum of Health and Medicine) in Washington, D.C. He took this photograph of the upper arm bone of twenty-two-year-old Private Barney White, who had been shot in the right elbow at Williamsburg, Virginia. The injury, coupled with Bright’s disease (a historical classification of kidney diseases), proved to be fatal.

When the war began, no one was prepared for the volume or severity of the resulting injuries, owing to the increased range and accuracy of the new “Minié ball” ammunition. The Army Medical Museum strove to improve wartime medical care by documenting cases of disease and injury with photographs of specimens of injured bone and of soldiers before and after operations.

MD, 2011

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