Skip to main content

The Forceps Operation, 1934

 Item — Multiple Containers

  • Staff Only

Scope and Contents

Warning: contains graphic surgical content and images of childbirth.

The history of obstetric forceps is discussed, and examples of how to maneuver the tool are shown in this silent, black and white film. The Wellcome Historical Medical Museum and the Royal College of Surgeons of London granted permission for the historical obstetric forceps in their collections to be photographed by the filmmakers. We see different models of forceps throughout time, as the device (and how to use it) was innovated by different men, including James Young Simpson, William Smellie, Friedrich Wilhelm Scanzoni von Lichtenfels, Etienne Tarnier, and Arthur Bill. We are witness to a low forceps operation delivery on a woman whose labor has been at a standstill for one hour with strong pains. An occiput posterior position labor of another woman follows. For the second labor, the “key in lock” maneuver, a composite of methods used by Smellie, Scanzoni, Tarnier, and Bill is demonstrated. The film is presented in four parts. Part one does not contain graphic content, the other three parts do. Intertitles are used to explain the images onscreen.
The Science and Art of Obstetrics series, by Joseph B. De Lee, M.D. and M. Edward Davis, M.D.

Cinematography by Roger W. Fenimore, S.M.P.E. and Chicago Film Laboratory. Pictures taken at Chicago Lying-In Hospital in affiliation with the University of Chicago.

Dates

  • 1934

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Part 1 is open for research.

Access to Parts 2-4 is restricted due to privacy concerns. The Galter Library Access Review Board grants or denies patron access through an application and review process. Contact Galter Library to apply.

Onsite access only.

Conditions Governing Use

Use is restricted due to privacy concerns. The Galter Library Access Review Board grants or denies patron use through an application and review process. Contact Galter Library to apply.

Patrons who intend to use this material in a study will need IRB approval from their home institution if the proposed use includes personally identifiable information.

Extent

4 Reels : Part One: 14:52 minutes, black & white, silent, acetate base; Part Two: 14:29 minutes, black & white, silent, acetate base; Part Three: 14:25 minutes, black & white, silent, acetate base; Part Four: 13:36 minutes, black & white, silent, acetate base ; Part One: 16mm, 392 ft.; Part Two: 16mm, 378 ft.; Part Three: 16mm, 377 ft.; Part Four: 16mm, 354 ft.

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English