Looking to keep travel weird and check out the strange and unusual? Check out one of the medical museums in the US on your next trip!
Medical Museums in the US
Indiana Medical History Museum in Indianapolis, Indiana
National Museum of Civil War Medicine in Frederick, Maryland
Vicky of Buddy the Traveling Monkey
A really fascinating medical history museum can be found in Frederick, Maryland. The National Museum of Civil War Medicine offers visitors a unique glance at the difficult conditions soldiers had during the Civil War and the many medical innovations that occurred during that time, many of which we still use today.
As visitors explore the museum, they’ll see many historic artifacts and many dioramas that really allow you to visualize the painful situations soldiers had to deal with. One particular gruesome exhibit detailed how amputations took place.
Anyone that enjoys history should visit this museum, but Civil War history buffs especially should consider a visit. We learned a lot of interesting facts about the war, women’s roles as nurses, and about the medicines and procedures that kept soldiers on both sides of the war fit to fight.
The museum is open every day except New Year’s Day, Easter, Thanksgiving, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day. The museum itself doesn’t have a parking lot, but there is metered on-street parking as well as the Carroll Creek Parking Deck located behind the museum. Admission for adults is $9.50.
Mutter Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Abbie of Speck on the Globe
Museum of Questionable Medical Devices in St. Paul, MN
Have you ever seen a medical tool or device and thought “WTF is that?!” or “There’s no way you’re getting that near me.”
Well, you’re not alone. And, you can now visit the Museum of Questionable Medical Devices in St Paul, Minnesota. You may also hear it called the Museum of Quackery.
This museum was created to display all these absolutely ridiculous, bizarre, and, honestly, horrifying medical tools and devices.
The Paul S. Russell MD Museum of Medical History and Innovation in Boston
Meg of Frost and Sun
The Paul S. Russell MD Museum of Medical History and Innovation explores the history of medicine and health care at Massachusetts General Hospital (MGH) in Boston, MA.
The museum has a collection of nearly 2000 items including surgical instruments, pamphlets, photographs, and uniforms.
In addition to the main space, museum-goers can visit The Ether Dome located nearby at 55 Fruit Street. The Ether Dome is where Dr. William T.G. Morton performed the first surgery using anesthesia in 1846.
Not all items from the museum’s collection are on display but can be viewed online via the museum’s website. If you are a medical or academic researcher, you can contact the museum to view the items in person, as well.
There is a quiet rooftop garden that is perfect for a break from the hustle and bustle of the city, as well as space where lectures and meetings can be held.
This museum is one of my favorite things to do in Boston’s West End neighborhood. What I love about this museum is that it is free, super close to public transportation, and small enough that it won’t take up a whole day of precious vacation time.
The Museum of Medical History and Innovation is located at 2 North Grove Street in Boston, MA.
It is open Monday through Friday, from 9 AM to 5 PM.
From April through October, it is also open on Saturdays from 11 AM to 5 PM.
Psychiatry: An Industry of Death Museum
Inside the Citizens Commission of Human Rights in Los Angeles, you’ll find a state of the art museum that documents psychiatry and how the industry has been driven by profit which has ultimately led to a lot of suffering and death.
The museum is completely self-guided and includes documentaries, artifacts, and displays of the treatment devices used in the psychiatry industry.
The museum is free to the public and is open 7 days a week.