University of Pennsylvania Finding Aids

Navigation Aids

University of Pennsylvania Finding Aids
Search Finding Aids
 

Main Content

French dental ephemera

Print Collection 54

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Title:
French dental ephemera
Date:
circa 1880s-1937
Call Number:
Print Collection 54
Extent:
0.2 linear foot (1 box)
Language:
English
Language Note:
The bulk of the collection is in French, however, there is some material in English as well as a small amount in German and Russian.
Abstract:
This collection consists of advertisements by dentists and dental practices in France; images (both illustration and photographic) of dentists, patients, and apparatus; and writings by French dentists relating to the field of dentistry.
Cite as:
French dental ephemeral, circa 1880s-1937, Print Collection 54, Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, University of Pennsylvania
PDF Version:

Return to Top »

Biography/History

During the second half of the 19th century and the first third of the 20th century, the business of extracting, capping, and filling teeth, as well as creating dentures, crowns, and bridges, was a thriving business in France. Advances in the field of dentistry were expanding rapidly, and dentists advertised new methods, new products, and less painful procedures. American dentists appear to have been extremely sought after, probably as a result of Thomas Evans's work as dentist to European royalty. It seems that American dentists, and many who trained in Evans's native city of Philadelphia, flocked to France.

In addition to French and American dentists practicing in their own "cabinet dentaires," there were a number of businesses such as the Compagnie Dentaire Americaine, the Grand Établissement de Docteurs Américains Dentistes, L'Institut Dentaire, Palladium Dentaire, Radium Dentaire, Société Dentaire Américaine, and Union Dentaire. All appear to have advertised heavily, noting the education and honors of their dentists, procedures performed, and the proprietary skills they possessed. Most of the French dentists earned their diplomas from the Faculty of Medicine of Paris and L'École Dentaire de France, while American dentists earned their degrees from universities in Philadelphia and New York.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of advertisements by dentists and dental practices in France; images (both illustration and photographic) of dentists, patients, and apparatus; and writings by French dentists relating to the field of dentistry. The advertisements for dentists and dental practices are alphabetized by the name of the dentist or practice, as much as possible. Advertisements are generally either a single sheet or a brochure of only a few pages and include experience and education of the dentist(s); location of the practice and hours; services provided, usually with price; specialty skills of the dentist; and languages spoken at the office. Guarantees are almost always offered. While a few of the advertisements are quite official and straightforward, many contain decorative lettering, illustrations, advertisements for dental products, or pictures of performers. Nearly all advertise American methods or American dentists; most offer "painless" procedures (which were frequently more costly than the presumably pain-filled procedures), and most promise moderate prices.

The images in this collections consist of a printed illustration of a dentist extracting a tooth, two photographs of a patient sitting in a dental chair (taken from two angles, perhaps highlighting the chair's features), and a number of photographs and illustrations of dental apparatus, possibly early versions of a dental bridge. There are also a few x-rays and their corresponding prints of abnormal teeth. There is virtually no description of the images, with the exception of an illustration of the apparatus with handwritten (and sadly, fairly illegible) notes.

The collection also includes writings about the dental profession. Four of the six articles were written by Léon Blanc, a French dentist who probably graduated from the University of Pennsylvania's Dental School in 1920. He wrote about anesthesia, toothaches, the effects of chewing on the jaw, and the dental profession in Soviet Russia. His article about toothaches contains manuscript notes by an unknown author. There are two copies of "La Prothèse Dentaire Revue Traitant de Toutes les Affections de la Bouche" ("The Revised Dental Prosthesis Dealing with All Disorders of the Mouth"), by G. Gelinier. Finally, the collection contains an extract of "Blaguomanie or Honteuses Réclames," by two dentists from Montpellier, with critique by Monde Dentaire.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions

Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Source of Acquisition

Sold by Garrett Scott, bookseller, 2018.

Return to Top »

Controlled Access Headings

Form/Genre(s)
  • Advertisements
  • Articles
  • Photographs
  • Technical illustrations
  • Writings (documents)
Subject(s)
  • Dentistry
  • Dentistry--France
  • Dentistry--History
  • Dentists

Return to Top »

Collection Inventory

Series I. Advertisements.

Box Folder

Berhard, Harry, after 1866.

1 1

Bourdon, J., undated.

1 1

Champagne, Louis, undated.

1 1

Compagnie Dentaire Américaine, undated.

1 1

Excelsior-Dentaire, undated.

1 1

Grand Établissement de Docteurs Americains Dentistes, undated.

1 1

Institut Dentaire, after 1888.

1 1

Irlicht, Jacques-J., undated.

1 1

Louis, Edmond, undated.

1 1

Le Louvre Dentaire, undated.

1 1

Mathis, J., after 1889.

1 2

Morcel, Charles, undated.

1 2

Noël, Jules and Gaston, after 1859.

1 2

Palladium Dentaire, after 1900.

1 2

Protov, Charles, after 1887.

1 2

Radium Dentaire, undated.

1 2

Seguier, France, undated.

1 2

Société Dentaire Américaine, undated.

1 2

Sprecher, Docteur, undated.

1 2

Union Dentaire, undated.

1 2

Unnamed dentists or dental offices, undated.

1 3

Series II. Images.

Box Folder

Illustration of a dentist extracting a tooth, undated.

1 4

Photographs of a patient in dental chair, undated.

1 4

Photographs and illustrations of dental apparatus (possibly a dental bridge), undated.

1 4

Photographs and x-rays of abnormal teeth, after 1895.

1 4

Series III. Writings.

Box Folder

Blanc, Léon, "L'Anesthésie tronculaire au trou palatin postérieur", 1928.

1 5

Blanc, Léon, "Les effets de la mastication sur les maxillaires", 1926.

1 5

Blanc, Léon, "Le mal de dents", 1936.

1 5

Blanc, Léon, "La Profession dentaire en U.R.S.S.", 1937.

1 5

Deux Dentistes de Montpellier, "Blaguomanie ou Honteuses Réclames," extract, with criticism by Monde Dentaire, after 1893.

1 6

Gelinier G., "La Prothèse Dentaire Revue" (two copies), 1892.

1 6