Welcome to the Museum of Medical History
The Museum of Medical History shows the developments in both, medicine and society, as from the middle of the 19th century. From 1840 to 1890, scientific methods became the new foundations for medicine. New technologies provided spectacular insights into the human body.
The structure of body cells and etiologic agent were uncovered by means of microscopy. Experiments run in laboratories and hospitals became significant instruments of research. Antisepsis and anesthesia made sophisticated chirurgical surgeries possible.
The broad population could not benefit from many scientific achievements until social conditions had allowed for them. The struggle for clean drinking water is closely linked to the history of the UKE (University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf). Maternity leave and infant welfare are achievements of the early Weimar republic. This is why there is a room in the museum which is exclusively dedicated to the development of nursing.
The debate about medicine during National Socialism demonstrates civilisation's frailty regarding medical research. Biologistic ideologies set the stage for genocide and murder of the sick. Physicians played a key role in the propagation, planning and execution of these doings.
The visitor can experience history of modern medicine in a historic setting: the building of the institute with laboratories, lecture auditoriums, dissecting rooms, hall of microscope and test animal boxes was a complex of buildings which was constructed by the Hamburg construction director Fritz Schumacher from 1913 to 1926 and which met the requirements of medicine which were new back then.
Since 2010, The Circle of Friends and Fundraising Group of the UKE e. V. (membership association) has been able to have the building complex restored with the support of the Hamburg Office for Preservation of Cultural Entities, numerous foundations and many generous private donors. The biggest exhibit of the Museum is the large dissecting room which is presented in its original condition of the year 1926. The historic building turns the visit to the museum into a special experience.