Later in life, Chevalier Jackson, M.D. (1865 to 1958) would liken Pittsburgh, his birthplace, to a “dark, cold, damp cellar” where “soot, grime and black dirt covered everything.” One day, schoolmates left him bound and blindfolded in an abandoned coal mine, only to be rescued by a man chasing his runaway dog. The tables turned in his adolescence when Jackson himself salvaged a dropped drill bit from a deep oil well using an instrument of his own design. By 1890, he had invented his first endoscope for foreign body retrieval from the dim, collapsible channel of the esophagus. While bronchoscopy originated in Germany, Jackson pioneered the procedure in the United States, maneuvering through winding airways to recover lost items. When he invented his namesake laryngoscope (center), which featured a distal light source, Jackson became the first to combine direct laryngeal visualization with endotracheal intubation. Ambidextrous with brush as well as scope, Jackson painted many scenes of sunlit water under cloudy skies during the decade that he struggled with tuberculosis. Through the dark tunnels of his life, Jackson always seemed to see the light. (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology, Schaumburg, Illinois.)

Later in life, Chevalier Jackson, M.D. (1865 to 1958) would liken Pittsburgh, his birthplace, to a “dark, cold, damp cellar” where “soot, grime and black dirt covered everything.” One day, schoolmates left him bound and blindfolded in an abandoned coal mine, only to be rescued by a man chasing his runaway dog. The tables turned in his adolescence when Jackson himself salvaged a dropped drill bit from a deep oil well using an instrument of his own design. By 1890, he had invented his first endoscope for foreign body retrieval from the dim, collapsible channel of the esophagus. While bronchoscopy originated in Germany, Jackson pioneered the procedure in the United States, maneuvering through winding airways to recover lost items. When he invented his namesake laryngoscope (center), which featured a distal light source, Jackson became the first to combine direct laryngeal visualization with endotracheal intubation. Ambidextrous with brush as well as scope, Jackson painted many scenes of sunlit water under cloudy skies during the decade that he struggled with tuberculosis. Through the dark tunnels of his life, Jackson always seemed to see the light. (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology, Schaumburg, Illinois.)

Jane S. Moon, M.D., University of California, Los Angeles, California, and Melissa L. Coleman, M.D., Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania.