The Paffard Years
Throughout the whole of Henry Paffard's nearly half a century as pharmacist owner, 1852-1898, Queen Victoria was the only British monarch. During her reign of 64 years, from 1837 to 1901, her domain expanded throughout the world to the point that it could validly be boasted that "The sun never sets on the British Empire".
Given the period of time relative to the Apothecary covered here, 1852 to 1898--nearly half a century or about one-third of the total life of the institution in the town--unmatched by any other of the pharmacist owners over nearly 150 years of the practice, we need to be relatively selective in our choice of notable world events.
That time span encompassed the Crimean War (1853-1856), the U.S. Civil War (1861-1865), and the Spanish American War (1898), but ended just before the Boer War (1899-1902). Science and technology witnessed Charles Darwin’s publication of The Origin of Species (1859) and The Descent of Man (1865), Gregor Mendel’s primal work on genetics (1865), laying of the Atlantic Cable (1860’s), and eventual world-wide benefits of the Graham Bell’s discovery in Canada of the telephone (1876), Thomas Edison’s electric light bulb (1879), and Eastman’s photographic film (1889).
Herman Hollerith invented a tabulating machine in the 1880's to overcome the daunting task of manually compiling the USA’s 1890 Census data. Although mechanical, Hollerith's device incorporated principles now used in computers.
Medical or Pharmaceutical Highlights
Chloroform in childbirth for Victoria, 1853
First blood pressure measures by Marey, 1858
Salicylic acid synthesized by Kolbe, 1859
Cocaine isolated by Niemann, 1859
Carbolic acid as disinfectant
Pasteur’s work re: bacteria
Lister re: antisepsis in surgery
Use of clinical thermometer, Wunderlich, 1868
Smallpox vaccination compulsory in Britian
Digitoxin extract for cardiac problems
Nitroglycerin used for angina
Cocaine used as local anaesthetic
Ampoules for hypodermic injection
Term “antibiosis” coined
Diptheria antitoxin used by Behring, Germany
Aspirin for rheumatism by Bayer, 1893
X-rays and radium discovered