Turnkey and Elevator

Dublin Core

Title

Turnkey and Elevator

Subject

Harvard University. Dental School. Museum
Brewster, George
Dentistry
Dental instruments and apparatus

Description

The turnkey (for extracting teeth) and the elevator (for extracting roots) were essential early dental instruments. These were used by Dr. George Brewster of Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

In "The Claims of Dentistry," an address at the 1872 commencement of the Dental School, Oliver Wendell Holmes said, of the turnkey, "There never was a claw on bird or beast that was the cause of such anguish of apprehension, such howls of agony, as that diabolical instrument, looking like a vulture's talon, but known by the name of the key. It was a key indeed: it may have opened the door of heaven to the sufferer in due time; but, while the bolt was turning, the victim thought he was in that other place, where the man must be who invented the instrument of torture. Now a patient comes in; takes a few whiffs of anaesthestic; has a dozen or more teeth submitted to the embrace of the gentlemanly forceps, which lift them from their sockets as one takes out the pegs of a solitaire-board,--say, rather, as a father lifts his first-born infant,--comes to; stares about him; asks when they are going to begin; is told that it is all over; bursts into tears of hysteric gratitude; kisses the smiling dentist; wants to hug all mankind, and make the human race happy at once."

Abstract

Turnkey and elevator used by Dr. George Brewster

Creator

Unknown

Date Created

1830-1850, circa

Rights

The Harvard Medical Library does not hold copyright on all materials in this collection. For use information, consult Public Services at chm@hms.harvard.edu

Access Rights

Access to the original work depicted requires advance notice. Contact Public Services at chm@hms.harvard.edu for additional information

Is Part Of

Harvard Dental School Museum Collection (HDSM 1049 and 1050)

Format

image

Extent

1 turnkey and 1 elevator

Type

physical object

Identifier

HDSM 1049
HDSM 1050
DigID0002306

Provenance

Gift of Dr. Edward B. Goodall to the Harvard Dental School Museum, 1893

Files

http://collections.countway.harvard.edu/onview/file_upload/0002306_dref.jpg

Citation

Unknown, “Turnkey and Elevator,” OnView, accessed July 15, 2024, https://collections.countway.harvard.edu/onview/items/show/6515.