X-Rays to the Soul: History’s Astounding Stories of Health and Medicine

Kurtis Kelly dramatizes four of history’s most unusual and fascinating stories from the annals of health and medicine. Learn how a British country doctor—witnessing a world ravaged by smallpox—observed how milkmaids in his village were immune—then gave the word “vaccination” to our vocabulary. Meet Dr. William J. Morton, who introduced the world in 1896 to an entrancing new discovery—the X-Ray (if it could see your bones, could it see your thoughts and soul?). Hear the intriguing story of Laura Dewey Bridgman, the first blind-deaf person to write and read with a finger alphabet, drawing world attention 25 years before Helen Keller. Finally, there is arsenic, a classic poison, which is in fact essential to human biology—but what arsenic mystery was unearthed while investigating the death of Napoleon—130 years later? These stories teach us about history—and provide a frame of reference for today’s concepts of health and wellness.