The Treasure Chest

The Treasure Chest will be updated six times a year to introduce a new Special Collection treasure.

U. S. Civil War Era Surgical Tool Kit





This kit was bought and given to the Special Collection department by William H. Brantley.

The following items are included in the kit.

A: Capital Saw: an instrument used to cut large bones.

B: Artery Forceps (tweezers): used for holding tissue or arteries to prevent bleeding.

C: Metacarpal Saw: an instrument used to cut small bones. This saw was stored underneath the capital saw in the case.

D: Tenaculum: a slender sharp-pointed hook attached to a handle and used mainly in surgery for seizing and holding tissue or arteries.

E: Undetermined


Brinton, John H. Personal Memoirs of John H. Brinton: Civil War Surgeon, 1861-1865. Carbondale Southern Illinois University Press, 1996.

Denney, Robert E. Civil War Medicine : Care & Comfort of the Wounded. New York : Sterling Pub. Co., c1994.

Gillett, Mary C. The Army Medical Department, 1818-1865. Washington, D.C. : Center of Military History, U.S. Army, 1987.

Medicine in the Civil War. National Park Service. February 20, 2006. .

Welsh, Jack D. Medical Histories of Confederate Generals. Kent, Ohio : Kent State University Press, 1995.