Ether Dome, Massachusetts General Hospital

Fruit St., Boston, Massachusetts

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Description 

This skylit operating theater on the top floor of Charles Bullfinch's Massachusetts General Hospital building derives its name and its significance from an event that took place on October 16, 1846, that revolutionized the practice of medicine. Here ether gas was first successfully used in public to anesthetize a patient prior to surgery. When the patient recovered and reported he had felt no pain, the chief surgeon announced, "Gentlemen, this is no humbug!" The room served as the hospital's operating room from its 1821 opening until 1867. Classes and lectures are still held here, and it may be visited when not in active use. -- National Historic Landmark statement of significance, January 12, 1965

National Register information 

Status
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on October 15, 1966
Reference number
66000366
Architectural style
Mid 19th Century Revival: Exotic Revival
Area of significance
Science
Level of significance
National
Evaluation criteria
A - Event
Property type
Building
Historic function
Hospital
Current function
Hospital
Period of significance
1825-1849
Significant year
1846

Update Log 

  • January 28, 2017: New Street View added by Brian Bartlett

Sources