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This comprehensive narrative history of early and middle nineteenth-century American medicine is also an important account of the growing popularity of statistical methods in the same period.
James Cassedy examines clinical medicine, public health, surgery, and the principal medical-sectarian movements from 1800 to 1860 by focusing on the quantitative growth of hospitals, medical schools, societies, journals, and other medically-related institutions. At the same time, he explores the roots of modern statistical thinking, the extension of data collection activities, the emergence of statistical institutions and professionalism, and the remarkable surge of enthusiasm for quantification that spread across the United States during this time.
American developments in both medicine and statistics are related to developments in Europe and are placed in the overall setting of American social, economic, and intellectual history.