Monday, June 5, 2017

Booknotes: Civil War Pharmacy Second Edition

New Arrival:
Civil War Pharmacy: A History (Second Edition) by Michael A. Flannery (SIU Press, 2017).

Reading the numbers thrown around in the early part of this book, it becomes clear that the Civil War sparked a colossal expansion of the pharmaceutical industry. Most of the organized antebellum drug manufacturing was concentrated in the North, but regulation was apparently pioneered in the South, with a handful of states there passing laws before any northern ones had similar public protections on the books.

Michael Flannery's Civil War Pharmacy "is the first book to delineate how the growing field of pharmacy gained respect and traction in, and even distinction from, the medical world because of the large-scale manufacture and dispersion of drug supplies and therapeutics during the Civil War. In this second edition, Flannery captures the full societal involvement in drug provision, on both the Union and Confederate sides, and places it within the context of what was then assumed about health and healing. He examines the roles of physicians, hospital stewards, and nurses—both male and female—and analyzes how the blockade of Southern ports meant fewer pharmaceutical supplies were available for Confederate soldiers, resulting in reduced Confederate troop strength. Flannery provides a thorough overview of the professional, economic, and military factors comprising pharmacy from 1861 to 1865 and includes the long-term consequences of the war for the pharmaceutical profession."

The Second Edition incorporates new scholarship while also adding two new chapters on battlefield pharmacy and naval pharmacy.

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