Calomel in America
Mercurial Panacea, War, Song and Ghosts
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Formed as a word and a chemical compound in an culturally diverse Europe, calomel came to America as a solution to epidemics also imported. It grew into a primary gesture, both medical and commercial, of the healing professions. Opposition to its use, founded on experience with the effects of consuming it, took the form of song and satire that echoed faintly after the drug was forgotten.
About the Author
Until retirement an investigator with the Medical Unit of the California State Division of Workers' Compensation, Richard Swiderski, Ph.D., has had extensive research experience on science and medicine in culture. His previous publications include a book on the history of mercury.