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Truman G. Blocker, Jr. History of Medicine Collections

Rare Books

Rare materials DO NOT circulate.

All rare books can be found in the Library Catalog.  "Available at Moody Medical Library Blocker Collections (3rd Floor)"

Please make an appointment to request access to rare books.

Photography is permitted and scanning is available (depending on condition of item).

The Blocker Collections holds over 20,000 rare books, pamphlets, offprints and reprints, and journals dating to the late 14th century.  The holdings of incunabula (books published prior to 1501) place the collection among the top medical sciences libraries in the United States.  The strengths of this collection include both fundamental and secondary works in anatomy and surgery, anesthesiology, immunology, occupational medicine, and psychiatry.

The oldest work in the collection is John of Gaddesden's Rosa Medicinae.  This edition was published in the 1390s and is handwritten on vellum.  Other highlights of the collection include:

  • Ellenbog, Ulrich Von den gifftigen besen Tempffen und Reüchen (1524)
  • Vesalius, Andreas De humani corporis fabrica (1543)
  • Tagliacozzi, Gaspare De curtorum chirurgia per institionem (1597)
  • Harvey, William Exercitatio anatomica de motu cordis et sanguinis in animalibus (1628)
  • Röntgen, Wilhelm Eine neue Art von Strahlen (1895)

Rare Book Collections

Titus Harris was UTMB's first professor and director of the Department of Psychiatry and Neurology.  In 1960, a small group of Dr. Harris' former residents formed the Titus Harris Society.  Following Dr. Harris' death in 1969, the Titus Harris Society decided to memorialize the Chief by purchasing a 4,700 volume collection of rare books dating to 1479 on eclectic topics relating to psychiatry.

Highlights of the Titus Harris Collection include:

  • All of the first editions of Sigmund Freud.
  • The handwritten manuscript of Havelock Ellis' autobiography My Life (1939).
  • Rush, Benjamin Medical inquiries and observations upon the diseases of the mind (1812)
  • Battie, William A treatise on madness (1758)
  • Weyer, Johann De praestigiis daemonum (1563)

Items from this collection are noted in the catalog with the call number TH.

The Blocker Collections holds the most significant collection of materials once owned by Louis Pasteur outside of the l'Institut Pasteur in Paris.  Included in this collection are several handwritten letters by Pasteur, all of his offprints and reprints, and materials from his personal library. 

Highlights of the Pasteur Collection include:

  • Donné, Alfred Cours de microscopie complémentaire des études médicales (1844)
  • Darwin, Charles On the origin of species by means of natural selection (1859)
  • Metchnikoff, Élie L'immunité dans les maladies infectieuses (1901)
  • A microscope from 1860, used by Pasteur.
  • 30+ papers by Pasteur rival, Robert Koch.

Charles A. Berry, MD was the first "doctor to the astronauts" and worked with NASA through the Apollo program.  In 1967, he was appointed the first director of the division of aerospace medicine at UTMB.  The Berry Library was established in 199? with a donation from Dr. Berry.  The library currently holds over 200 titles.

Highlights of the Berry Library include:

  • Bert, Paul La pression barométrique (1878)
  • Hopewell, Louis Aviation Medicine (1926)
  • Armstrong, Harry Principles and Practices of Aviation Medicine (1939)
  • Lingbergh, Charles Of Flight and Life (1948)
  • All of the issues of the journals of the Aerospace Medical Association.

Items from this collection are noted in the catalog with the call number CB.

Additional archival materials relating to the history of aerospace medicine are also held in the Blocker Collections.