History of Medicine

The School of Medicine Library's collection of rare medical books consists of approximately 525 volumes. Included are texts dealing with many aspects of medicine and medical history. Broad subject categories include anatomy, physiology, public health, the practice of medicine, human bodily systems (respiratory, digestive, cardiovascular, etc.), medical specialties (gynecology, surgery, obstetrics, pediatrics, geriatrics), and history of medicine. Each volume has a pre-1900 copyright date, with many dating from the middle of the 19th century. These books have been generously donated to the library over the years by the families of physicians who practiced medicine or resided in the state of South Carolina.

Digital Collection

The digital collection began in 2009, when the Library was awarded a digitization grant from the National Network of Libraries of Medicine Southeastern/Atlantic Region to digitize five historical medical books.

A second grant was awarded in 2010, which will allow us to scan and make available a small collection of medical pamphlets from the late 19th century. These and other digital works will be added to this page in future.

All items in the Digital Collection are selected from the History of Medicine Collection.

More digital books on the History of Medicine  are available through  the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Digital Collections.


Charles S. Bryan History Of Medicine Room

On January 15, 2003, the University of South Carolina School of Medicine officially dedicated the Charles S. Bryan History of Medicine Room named in honor of Charles S. Bryan, M.D., Heyward Gibbes Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Associate Dean and Director of the University of South Carolina-Palmetto Health Alliance Center for Medical Humanities. With the approval of the University of South Carolina, Dean Larry R. Faulkner, M.D., directed Dr. Bryan's generous gift to establishing the USC School of Medicine Library Endowment. The endowment provides support for the preservation of the rare book collection housed in the Charles S. Bryan History of Medicine Room. As it grows, the endowment will also fund the acquisition of additional historical works, the purchase of books for the general circulating collection, and other specialized areas of the USC School of Medicine Library.