Friday, May 24, 2013
Medic, The Army Doctor
I had to use my best magnifying glass on this real photo postcard to make out the Caduceus on this soldiers collar. The Caduceus (Actually it's a rod of Asclepius, but since everyone thinks Caduceus, I'm stickin' with that.) is the modern symbol for a doctor. I always have to wonder how prepared a doctor is for war. In the United States, before World War 1, a doctor might have had to deal with everything from a baby born in a tenement apartment, to polio, to streetcar accidents. And then World War 1 comes along, and it's machine gun fire, high explosives, and poison gas. And as a bonus, as the war ends, the Spanish flu pandemic begins. And for those who make light of the flu, the official death toll, at the time, was 30 million dead world wide, over 18 months. Many modern historians, however, believe that the actual numbers were somewhere between 100 and 120 million dead.