DR. SQUIBB by Lawrence G. Blochman


Email this review


Based on unpublished personal journals covering 50 years, and written by an author of medical-detective stories with a knowledge of pathology, this long and fascinating biography of Edward R. Squibb, grandfather of the Pure Food & Drug Act, founder of the firm bearing his name and Victorian individualist, is overdue. Squibb's interest in drugs began during his boyhood apprenticeship to a manufacturer. Serving in the Mexican War (after securing his medical degree) as an assistant surgeon he was appalled at the adulterated drugs issued by the Government and began his lifelong battle for pure drugs. The end of the war brought marriage, a home in Brooklyn which he ran- along with his wife- on stern Victorian principles, and the beginning of his own drug manufacture. This was scarcely set back by a laboratory calamity in which he was badly burned and partially blinded. In the 1870's he began his active campaign for a Federal food and drug act and the fight was ultimately won after his death by his disciple Dr. Harvey Wiley... Crisply written and thoroughly documented, the book is not merely an excellent biography of an amazing man also a social history of the 19th century America in which he lived. It should have the solid support of all connected with the profession- certainly school and college and medical libraries- and a more general audience may feel some side-affects.

Pub Date: Sept. 9th, 1958
Publisher: Simon & Schuster