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Austin Flint And Elbert Hubbard: Beneath The Covers

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Flint's Journal

Flint’s Journal

What connection could there be between Austin Flint, M.D., one of the founders of the University at Buffalo’s Medical School, and Elbert G. Hubbard, founder of the Roycroft arts and crafts movement in East Aurora, New York?  Recently re-discovered in the Brown History of Medicine Collection were eight volumes of a publication called Flint’s Journal dating from1848 to 1855.  While the title on the spine of the original binding may not be familiar, the journal inside is actually the Buffalo Medical Journal and Monthly Review of Medical and Surgical Science, established in 1846 by Dr. Austin Flint and Dr. Sanford Hunt.  What makes this particular iteration of the journal even more interesting is who actually owned it.  Inside several of the volumes were letters, newspaper clippings and hand written notes relating to Dr. Silas Hubbard, father of Elbert.  What a find!  Dr. Hubbard, born in Mayville, New York in 1821, moved to Buffalo when he was ten.  At age eighteen he began the study of medicine with Dr. William Butler in Lima, New York after which he attended a course of medical lectures at the Medical College in Castleton, Vermont.  In the fall of 1840 Dr. Hubbard returned to Buffalo and continued his studies with Dr. Noah Warner followed by another course of medical lectures in Vermont where he received his degree in 1842.  He practiced medicine in Buffalo and also lectured on phrenology in various other states.  Dr. Hubbard moved with his family to Illinois where he continued the practice of medicine. He eventually moved to East Aurora, New York before returning to Buffalo where he died in 1917.  Elbert Hubbard, the third of eight children born to Dr. Hubbard and his wife, promulgated the English Arts and Crafts movement personified by William Morris and others that stressed hand craftsmanship as an “antidote to the unhealthy character of industrial society.” (1)  Elbert and his second wife were killed in May, 1915 when the ship they were on, the RMS Lusitania, was torpedoed by the Germans.  On a page inside Volume X of Flint’s Journal a devastated Dr. Hubbard wrote the following in his frail handwriting: “E.G Hubbard [son] was 59 years old when he was murdered by the Germans last [m]ay 1915.”

(1)   http://www.pbs.org/wned/elbert-hubbard/early-artisans.php

 

Dr. Hubbard's comments inside Volume 10

Dr. Hubbard’s comments inside Volume 10

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