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Letters: Dr. Benjamin Vaughn to Ben Page
Like midwives, young doctors learned valuable skills from veterans of their profession. A number of letters from Dr. Benjamin Vaughn to the younger Dr. Page have been preserved. Vaughn's parents came from wealthy merchant families, one in London and one in Boston. Born in 1751, Vaughn studied medicine in Edinburgh and was elected to Parliament. He settled in Maine around 1796 and practiced medicine part-time. Born in 1770, Page had practiced in Hallowell since 1791. In these letters, Vaughn advises the younger physician on a number of medical questions.


Questions to Ask these Pages

1. What drugs does Vaughn prescribe?

2. What treatments other than drugs does Vaughn prescribe?

More Questions

1. How do these drugs and treatments compare with the remedies described in Martha Ballard's diary?
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2. How do these treatments compare with those we use today?
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March 14, 1802: Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3

influence of gum arabic or any gums in this complicated attack, I think liquorice in small quantities may be admissable, particularly the stick liquorice; of which Judge North has plenty, if you have not. Irritation must be checked.

   Lastly, as to riding out in cool weather, I think the measure is, or will seem to be dubious, till the irritation to cough is removed. You remember that Mr. Lewis' first ride was followed by an increase of fever; but that his subsequent rides, when his breast was relieved, were of eminent utility.

   Forgive this freedom, as well as my request that you would attend a little to Mr. [Willis]; whose [expectoration] was said last night to have abated, but which by a little root or bleeding (if bleeding is indicated) may be restored perhaps. Possibly the clyster & physic of yesterday had effect

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