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Post Mortem Examinations and Case Books

  • 406 PM
  • Collection
  • 1840-1946

The post mortem records contain manuscript case notes, with medical notes both pre and post mortem. These include details on patients’ admission to the hospital, treatments and medication administered to patients and the medical history of patients; the medical histories were copied into the volumes from hospital registers, which are no longer extant. The post mortem cases include detailed pathological findings made during the detailed examination of the body after death. From the 1880s onwards the case books contain original anatomical drawings and photographs.

For more information and updates about the project, see our project page

The following information is recorded for each case. The information is transcribed from the case notes and/or the relevant index and, where relevant, additionally standardised using MeSH (Medical Subject Headings)

• Name of the patient. If a name is not entered in the volume, it is noted in the catalogue as ‘[No name stated]’

• Gender of the patient (female / male / unknown)

• Age of the patient. Usually in numbers, following the original, with the following exceptions: 4/12 = 4 months, 4/52 = 4 weeks, 4/365 = 4 days. If no age is entered, it is noted in the catalogue as ‘[No age stated]’

• Occupation of the patient. Where no occupation is entered, it is noted in the catalogue as ‘[No occupation stated]’. Children are often designated according to their father’s or mother’s occupation and women by their husband’s occupation (e.g. ‘F / Horsekeeper’, ‘M. Charwoman’, ‘Hd Grocer’); these have been rendered in the catalogue as ‘[Child of] Horsekeeper’, ‘[Wife of] Grocer’

• Date of admission and date of death

• The names of the doctors treating or examining the patient. ‘Admitted under the care of’ denotes the senior doctor in charge of the case (usually entered at the top of the page and in the index); ‘Post mortem performed by’ denotes the doctor responsible for the post mortem examination (usually signed at the bottom of the page) and ‘Medical examination performed by’ denotes the doctor responsible for the medical examination prior to death (usually signed at the bottom of the page). The earliest records usually contain only one name, and some of the later ones may contain multiple names in each category. An authority record (name access point) with basic biographical details has been created for each doctor mentioned in the records; these can be used to explore all the cases related to a particular individual

• Disease(s) or cause of death of the patient. Transcribed from the medical case and/or the index and standardised, e.g. ‘Disease (transcribed): Phthisis. Fractured base. Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (lungs). Fracture (skull)’

• Medical and post mortem notes. Brief summary description or transcription of the case notes relating to previous medical history (not a full transcription of the case notes)

• Note on whether the case includes illustrations or photographs; these can also be browsed via genre access points

• Note on whether the death was caused by trauma, accident or suicide

• Subject access points, using standardised terms from MeSH, with disease type (e.g. respiratory tract diseases, cardiovascular diseases) and anatomy type (e.g. cardiovascular system, musculoskeletal system), which can be used for browsing all relevant cases

Note on transcriptions and abbreviations

Names have been silently expanded, e.g. Jas = James, Wm = William

Some common abbreviations and acronyms

AMCH = Atkinson Morley Convalescent Hospital, Wimbledon
BID = Brought in dead
COA = Condition on admission
F = Father
H or Hd = Husband
HP = House physician
HS = House surgeon
IP = In-patient
L = Left
M = Mother
MR or Med reg or Med r = Medical register or Medical registrar
MS = Museum specimen
OP = Out-patient
OPD = Out-patient department
OR = Obstetric register
PMH = Previous medical history
PH = Previous history
Pt or Pat = Patient
PM = Post mortem
R = Right
RF = Rheumatic fever
Ry = Railway
SR or Surg reg = Surgical register or Surgical registrar
TB = Tuberculosis
VD = Venereal disease

St George's Hospital, London

Rare Books

  • GB 406 RB
  • Collection
  • 1532-1994

Collection of rare books accumulated by the medical school library when it was originally located at Hyde Park Corner, in central London. Also contains books collected by the medical school library when it relocated in 1976 to Tooting, London.

St George's Hospital Medical School, London

Ellen Moat, 48, [Occupation not stated]

Occupation or role: [Occupation not stated]
Age: 48
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 2 May 1849
Date of death: 12 May 1849
Disease (transcribed): Dropsy. Diseased heart
Disease (standardised): Edema (Systemic); Disease (Heart)
Admitted under the care of: Nairne, Robert
Medical examination performed by: Barclay, Andrew Whyte
Post mortem examination performed by: Gray, Henry
Medical notes: As the body was not examined, the history of this case is not given’
Body parts examined in the post mortem: This body was not examined'

Type of incident: n/a

Jane Gillingham, 30, Married

Occupation or role: Married
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 21 Jan 1874
Date of death: 8 Apr 1874
Disease (transcribed): Cancer of uterus and vagina
Disease (standardised): Cancer (Uterus); Cancer (Vagina)
Admitted under the care of: Clarke, John
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: Haward, John Warrington
Medical notes: This woman was married, had six children, was confined three months ago and had never been perfectly well since.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Pleurae, lungs, heart, liver, spleen, kidneys, glands and organs of generation
Type of incident: n/a

Josephine Madigan, 3, Child

Occupation or role: Child
Age: 3
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 10 Apr 1863
Date of death: 14 Apr 1863
Disease (transcribed): Sloughing of labia
Disease (standardised): Sloughing (Labia)
Admitted under the care of: Tatum, Thomas
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: n/a
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Not examined
Type of incident: n/a

Henry Burkbridge, 58, Porter

Occupation or role: Porter
Age: 58
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 2 Apr 1866
Date of death: 3 Apr 1866
Disease (transcribed): Hypertrophy of heart. Oedema of lungs. Granular kidneys
Disease (standardised): Disease (Heart); Oedema (Lung); Disease (Kidney)
Admitted under the care of: Page, William Emanuel
Medical examination performed by: Thompson, Reginald Edward
Post mortem examination performed by: Whipham, Thomas Tillyer. Dickinson, William Howship
Medical notes: He was a hall keeper at the Lyceum Theatre and had suffered from rheumatism for many years. Five weeks before admission the legs began to swell and he was obliged to give up work.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Chest and abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

Samuel Storer, 43, Tailor

Occupation or role: Tailor
Age: 43
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 1 Apr 1864
Date of death: 8 Apr 1864
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Lee, Henry
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: Braine, Francis Woodhouse
Medical notes: 'Case not given’
Body parts examined in the post mortem: 'Not examined’

Type of incident: n/a

John Spackman , 45, Stableman

Occupation or role: Stableman
Age: 45
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 10 Apr 1861
Date of death: 11 Apr 1861
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Page, William Emanuel
Medical examination performed by: Dickinson, William Howship
Post mortem examination performed by: Holmes, Timothy
Medical notes: The patient had been a stableman, of very dissolute habits. He said that although he had had a cough and expectoration for several months, he was only now taken seriously ill
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Thorax, larynx and abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

Caroline McMurtice, 16, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 16
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 20 Apr 1857
Date of death: 1 May 1857
Disease (transcribed): Fever. Arachinitis. Ulceration of the large intestine. Phthisis
Disease (standardised): Fever (Systemic); Arachnoiditis (Brain); Ulcer (Intestines); Tuberculosis (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Pitman, Henry
Medical examination performed by: Rogers, George Goddard
Post mortem examination performed by: Holmes, Timothy
Medical notes: She had been observed of late to be low spirited, very languid and indisposed to exert herself.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Cranium, thorax, abdomen and pelvis
Type of incident: n/a

Sarah Mattey, 28, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 30 Nov 1842
Date of death: 23 Dec 1842
Disease (transcribed): Erysipelas. Secondary symptom.
Disease (standardised): Erysipelas (Skin)
Admitted under the care of: Wilson, James Arthur
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: This patient was admitted with secondary syphilitic symptoms. Shortly after her admission she had an attack of erysipelas of which she ultimately died.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Cranium, thorax and abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

Frederick Fillers, 56, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 56
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 17 May 1843
Date of death: 19 May 1843
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis.
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Wilson, James Arthur
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: n/a
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Thorax and abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

William Cranbrook, 53, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 53
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 1 Apr 1846
Date of death: 23 Apr 1846
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis. Miliary tubercles. Ulceration of intestines.
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung); Ulcer (Intestines)
Admitted under the care of: Wilson, James Arthur
Medical examination performed by: Fuller, Henry William
Post mortem examination performed by: Pollock, George
Medical notes: This patient reported that he had been ill about six months, suffering almost constantly from diarrhoea with gradual wasting and extreme debility. His illness began with a fistula in ano.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Thorax and abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

Charles Saunders, 49, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 49
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 26 May 1841
Date of death: 28 May 1841
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lungs)
Admitted under the care of: Macleod, Roderick
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: n/a
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Cranium, thorax, abdomen

Type of incident: n/a

George Tucker, 59, Labourer

Occupation or role: Labourer
Age: 59
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 17 Mar 1877
Date of death: 18 Mar 1877
Disease (transcribed): Wound of peritoneum; peritonitis. Wound of pericardium and of heart.
Disease (standardised): Wound (Abdomen); Peritonitis (Abdomen); Wound (Heart)
Admitted under the care of: Holmes, Timothy
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: Ewart, William
Medical notes: Nine hours previous to admission this patient, having been worried by his grandchildren laid open his abdomen with a penknife.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Pleurae, lungs, pericardium, heart, liver, kidneys, spleen, peritoneum and intestinal canal
Type of incident: Suicide

Agnes Workman, 49, Servant

Occupation or role: Servant
Age: 49
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 1 Mar 1876
Date of death: 2 Apr 1876
Disease (transcribed): Cancer of cervical glands, palate, lungs
Disease (standardised): Cancer (Lymph nodes); Cancer (Mouth); Cancer (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Barclay, Andrew Whyte
Medical examination performed by: Fenwick, John Charles James
Post mortem examination performed by: Lee, Robert James
Medical notes: This woman said that she had been subject to cough and spitting for some time and had spat some blood a few weeks ago.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Lungs, palate, heart, liver and kidneys
Type of incident: n/a

Walter Taylor, 48, Drover

Occupation or role: Drover
Age: 48
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 20 Feb 1889
Date of death: 28 Mar 1889
Disease (transcribed): Phthisis. Pulmonary and laryngeal
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung); Tuberculosis (Larynx)
Admitted under the care of: Dickinson, William Howship
Medical examination performed by: Sisley, Richard
Post mortem examination performed by: Penrose, Francis George
Medical notes: For a year before his admission the man had been unable to work and had suffered from cough and dyspnoea, and for six months he had lost flesh.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Lungs, heart, larynx, liver, stomach and intestines
Type of incident: n/a

William Garrett, 20, Carman

Occupation or role: Carman
Age: 20
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 3 Mar 1886
Date of death: 17 Mar 1886
Disease (transcribed): Fibroid phthisis. Dilatation of the right side of the heart. Hypertrophy of the right ventricle and advanced fatty degeneration of its muscle
Disease (standardised): Tuberculosis (Lung); Fibrosis (Lung); Disease (Heart)
Admitted under the care of: Dickinson, William Howship
Medical examination performed by: Griffiths, Herbert Tyrrell
Post mortem examination performed by: Sisley, Richard
Medical notes: The patient attributed his illness to lying down on a haystack after cutting chaff. He had intense dyspnoea and had periodic attacks of cough in the winter since.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Pleurae, lungs, larynx, pericardium, heart, peritoneum, liver, spleen, kidneys, bladder and intestines
Type of incident: n/a

Ethel Vizor, 6, [Occupation not stated]

Occupation or role: [Occupation not stated]
Age: 6
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 28 Mar 1894
Date of death: 30 Mar 1894
Disease (transcribed): Diphtheria. (Tracheotomy)
Disease (standardised): Diphtheria (Pharynx); Tracheotomy (Trachea)
Admitted under the care of: Ewart, William
Medical examination performed by: Ogle, Cyril
Post mortem examination performed by: Fyffe, William Kington
Medical notes: 'It appeared from the history that there were cases of diphtheria in the house in which the child lived and that the neighbouring house was likewise infected with the disease - For two weeks she had had a sore at the angle of her mouth and during that time she had been ailing. On the 24th she complained of difficulty of swallowing and sore throat. On the 27th her breathing was laboured and she 'made a noise in breathing' '
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Thorax, abdomen
Type of incident: n/a

Ernest Monk, 14, [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: 14
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 24 Mar 1891
Date of death: 25 Mar 1891
Disease (transcribed): Multiple embolism of lungs. Congestion of brain. (?Septicaemia)
Disease (standardised): Embolism (Lungs); Congestion (Brain); Sepsis (Systemic)
Admitted under the care of: Rouse, James
Medical examination performed by: Hale, Geoffrey Edward
Post mortem examination performed by: Allingham, Herbert William
Medical notes: 'The patient when admitted was too ill to be able to give a reliable history. From the friends, the disease was caused from a fall on his head about a week previous to his admission here. After the accident was said to have been insensible for an hour, and had been very delirious ever since'
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Head, neck, abdomen, thorax

Type of incident: Trauma / accident?

Henry Mason, 40, Labourer

Occupation or role: Labourer
Age: 40
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 1 Apr 1896
Date of death: 1 Apr 1896
Disease (transcribed): Fractured lower limbs. Vomited matter in larynx and bronchi
Disease (standardised): Fracture (Leg); Vomit (Larynx); Vomit (Bronchi)

Admitted under the care of: Dent, Clinton Thomas
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: Rolleston, Humphry Davy
Medical notes: Not seen by Registrar
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Head, limbs, lungs, pericardium, heart, liver, spleen, pancreas, suprarenals, kidney, bladder and testes
Type of incident: Trauma/accident

Arthur Pinith, 15, Hall boy

Occupation or role: Hall boy
Age: 15
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 31 Mar 1908
Date of death: 6 Apr 1908
Disease (transcribed): Lobar pneumonia
Disease (standardised): Pneumonia (Lung)
Admitted under the care of: Rolleston, Humphry Davy
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: See Medical Register Notes
Body parts examined in the post mortem: No necropsy
Type of incident: n/a

[Name redacted], [No age stated], [No occupation stated]

Occupation or role: [No occupation stated]
Age: [No age stated]
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 3 Jul 1942
Date of death: 4 Jul 1942
Disease (transcribed): Coronary atheroma
Disease (standardised): Plaque, atherosclerotic (Arteries)
Admitted under the care of: Bellingham-Smith, Eric
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: Brought in dead
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Skeletal system, brain, heart, lungs, stomach, liver, kidneys, spleen, bone marrow and endocrines
Type of incident: n/a

Harry Parrick, 47, Labourer

Occupation or role: Labourer
Age: 47
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 11 Mar 1902
Date of death: 1 Apr 1902
Disease (transcribed): Lobar pneumonia. Granular kidneys. Cardiac hypertrophy
Disease (standardised): Pneumonia (Lung); Disease (Kidney); Disease (Heart)
Admitted under the care of: Rolleston, Humphry Davy
Medical examination performed by: Pearson, Sidney Vere
Post mortem examination performed by: Fenton, William James
Medical notes: This patient was an in patient in the hospital on two separate occasions for dyspnoea and bronchitis.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Lungs, heart, liver, spleen, pancreas, kidneys, urinary tract and alimentary canal
Type of incident: n/a

Emma Kemp, 58, Servant

Occupation or role: Servant
Age: 58
Gender: Female
Date of admission: 26 Mar 1912
Date of death: 3 Apr 1912
Disease (transcribed): Purulent general peritonitis. Perinephritis (right). Abscesses both kidneys. Cyst adenoma of gall bladder. Atrophic scirrhus of right breast
Disease (standardised): Suppuration (Abdomen); Peritonitis (Abdomen); Perinephritis (Kidney); Abscess (Kidney); Cysts (Gall bladder); Cancer (Breast)
Admitted under the care of: Rolleston, Humphry Davy
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: Cohen, Bertie Isaac
Medical notes: She had pain in the right side of the abdomen, difficulty in holding her water for three months, and a tumour in the right breast for some time.
Body parts examined in the post mortem: Lungs, pericardium, heart, larynx, thyroid, abdomen, liver, pancreas, spleen and pelvic organs
Type of incident: n/a

[Name redacted], 47, Manager

Occupation or role: Manager
Age: 47
Gender: Male
Date of admission: 29 Apr 1931
Date of death: 1 May 1931
Disease (transcribed): Clinical diagnosis: Perforated appendix and general peritonitis
Disease (standardised): Perforation (Appendix); Peritonitis (Abdomen)
Admitted under the care of: English, T. Crisp
Medical examination performed by: n/a
Post mortem examination performed by: n/a
Medical notes: No autopsy
Body parts examined in the post mortem: No autopsy
Type of incident: n/a

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