U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

NLM logo

Exhibition Program

Join Our Mailing list

Stay up -to-date with the latest at the National Library of Medicine.



So, What’s New in the Past?: The Multiple Meanings of Medical History

Drawing of a brick buildingText: 'So What's New in the Past? The Multiple Meanings of Medical History.' Accompanied by a collage of famous 20th century photographs and drawings.

The history of medicine tells different stories and different truths depending on the questions asked and the concerns raised. That’s why there is always something new in the past. During the last two hundred years, members of the medical profession created the field of the history of medicine. Since then, historians of medicine and practitioners have used history as “Weapon,” as “Inspiration,” as “Edifice,” as “Politics,” as “Profession,” and as “Today's News.” History provides different meanings and different content to viewers, as they adjust their focus to find answers to ever changing questions. So, What’s New in the Past? The Multiple Meanings of Medical History explores some of the many meanings people have found in the history of medicine within the United States.

The online exhibition features an exhibition checklist.

Last Reviewed: May 27, 2015