A diehard New Englander, Maine native Moses S. Eldridge (1833 to 1889) relocated south to New Hampshire and then Massachusetts before finally settling in Rhode Island. Initially offering dental patients in Providence chloroform or ether anesthetics, Eldridge left home to serve the Union forces during America’s Civil War. The very month that Eldridge mustered out of the 11th Rhode Island Infantry, July of 1863, was the same month that Gardner Q. Colton revived dentists’ use of nitrous-oxide by opening his Colton Dental Association in Manhattan. Under his albumen-print portrait (left) glued inside a nine-starred, oval-framed carte-de-visite, “M. S. Eldridge” (upper right) was inspired by Colton to advertise the former’s willingness to administer “Chloroform, Ether or Laughing Gas when required” (lower right). Providence directories list Eldridge at this card’s 37 Dorrance Street address from 1864 to 1866. (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

A diehard New Englander, Maine native Moses S. Eldridge (1833 to 1889) relocated south to New Hampshire and then Massachusetts before finally settling in Rhode Island. Initially offering dental patients in Providence chloroform or ether anesthetics, Eldridge left home to serve the Union forces during America’s Civil War. The very month that Eldridge mustered out of the 11th Rhode Island Infantry, July of 1863, was the same month that Gardner Q. Colton revived dentists’ use of nitrous-oxide by opening his Colton Dental Association in Manhattan. Under his albumen-print portrait (left) glued inside a nine-starred, oval-framed carte-de-visite, “M. S. Eldridge” (upper right) was inspired by Colton to advertise the former’s willingness to administer “Chloroform, Ether or Laughing Gas when required” (lower right). Providence directories list Eldridge at this card’s 37 Dorrance Street address from 1864 to 1866. (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

George S. Bause, M.D., M.P.H., Honorary Curator and Laureate of the History of Anesthesia, Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology, Schaumburg, Illinois, and Clinical Associate Professor, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. UJYC@aol.com.