Civil War Medicine Demonstration and Lecture

We invite you to join us on Monday, Feb. 11, when Chris Grimes, a local Civil War reenactor visits Laupus Library. From 1-3:30 p.m., he will offer informal demonstrations of various Civil War era medical instruments on the second floor. At 4:30 p.m., he will present a talk entitled Jonathan Letterman: Father of Battlefield Medicine in the fourth floor gallery. 

Jonathan Letterman began his service as the Medical Director of the Army of the Potomac in July 1862, over a year after the Civil War began. Prior to his appointment, medical care in the Army of the Potomac had been poor. During his tenure, Letterman reorganized the Ambulance Corps, created the first ambulance service in the United States Army, and utilized the triage system. The methods he established were tested at the Battle of Antietam and proved successful. The United States Congress implemented Letterman's methods across the entire United States Army after the Civil War ended. Today, his ideas remain the basis for our military's system of emergency treatment.

Chris Grimes has had a life-long love of history that truly blossomed in 2000 when he helped create a local Civil War Navy living history group in Plymouth, NC. In 2009, a friend lured him into the fascinating world of historical medicine and invited him to join His Majesty’s Detached Hospital, a medical living history group which portrays a British General Hospital detachment during the American Revolution. This foray into Revolutionary War era medicine led him to expand his research, and ultimately interpretation, of Civil War era medicine. On weekends, you might find Grimes regaling people with stories of horrific treatments such as bleeding and purging, at various living history programs or at the Mariner’s Museum, Newport News, Va.


These events will complement the “Life and Limb: The Toll of the American Civil War” traveling exhibit and is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.

For more information about the exhibit, click here.

Visit this link for directions and parking information.
If you are on main campus, you can ride the 302 Bus from the Main Campus Student Center to the Allied Health Sciences Building. Here is the schedule for the 302.

Lectures may be video recorded.

This is a Wellness Passport event.

Monday, February 11 at 4:30pm to 5:45pm

Laupus Library, 2nd Floor Entrance and 4th Floor Gallery
500 Health Science Dr, Greenville, NC 27834

Event Type



Laupus Library

Target Audience

Students, Faculty, Staff, Public

Contact Name

Layne Carpenter

Contact Phone Number


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