Portrait of Dr.Benjamin Rush, Surgeon General and signee of the Declaration of Independence.
Philadelphia, published by Isaiah Price, 1898. Original etching, after a painting by Edward Savage (1761-1817), signed by american artist L.E.Faber in the plate and additionally in pencil under his engraved signature. Facsimile-signature of Benjamin Rush under the portrait. Image itself: 28 cm x 33 cm. Sheet measures: 43,5 cm x 56,5 cm. Outer margins slightly stained and with some fraying. The portrait itself in excellent condition, mounted with two strips to the top. Rare, signed antique etching of one of the most interesting medical doctors and early medical educators who lived during the american revolutionary war and were instrumental in the founding of the United States of America.
Benjamin Rush (January 4, 1746 [O.S. December 24, 1745] – April 19, 1813) was a signer of the United States Declaration of Independence and a civic leader in Philadelphia, where he was a physician, politician, social reformer, humanitarian, and educator and the founder of Dickinson College. Rush attended the Continental Congress. His later self-description there was: “He aimed right.” He served as Surgeon General of the Continental Army and became a professor of chemistry, medical theory, and clinical practice at the University of Pennsylvania.
Rush was a leader of the American Enlightenment and an enthusiastic supporter of the American Revolution. He was a leader in Pennsylvania’s ratification of the Constitution in 1788. He was prominent in many reforms, especially in the areas of medicine and education. He opposed slavery, advocated free public schools, and sought improved education for women and a more enlightened penal system. As a leading physician, Rush had a major impact on the emerging medical profession. As an Enlightenment intellectual, he was committed to organizing all medical knowledge around explanatory theories, rather than rely on empirical methods. Rush argued that illness was the result of imbalances in the body’s physical system and was caused by malfunctions in the brain. His approach prepared the way for later medical research, but Rush himself undertook none of it. He promoted public health by advocating clean environment and stressing the importance of personal and military hygiene. His study of mental disorder made him one of the founders of American psychiatry. In 1965 the American Psychiatric Association recognized Rush as the “father of American psychiatry”.(Wikipedia)