Roger Newton Lambert Account Book

Overview: A graduate of Dartmouth College and Harvard Medical School, R. Newton Lambert set up in private practice in Upton, Mass., in 1829. His medical career, however, would be brief. In October 1836, just 37 years old, Lambert died in Lyme, N.H.

Lambert's double column account book includes records of services performed (such as the extraction of teeth, vaccination, and childbirth) and medicines prescribed, as well as accounts for his patients' (primarily women and families) and notations on work for the town's poor.

See similar SCUA collections:

Massachusetts (Central)
Medical

Background on Roger Newton Lambert

Roger Newton Lambert was born in Newbury, Mass., on Sept. 24, 1799, the son of Rev. Nathaniel Lambert and his wife Abigail Newton. A graduate of Dartmouth College in 1825, Lambert studied medicine at Harvard (AM, MD 1829) before beginning his professional career as a physician in Upton, Mass. Still in practice in Upton as late as 1834, Lambert died in Lyme, N.H., on Oct. 9, 1836, aged 36, and is buried in Old Lyme Cemetery.

Contents of Collection

This slender double-column account book documents the medical practice of R. Newton Lambert in Upton, Mass., between 1829 and 1834. The length of each entry varies from a few lines to several pages, and almost all accounts were balanced and settled at some point. Lambert apparently preferred to settle in cash or promissory notes, however a few entries listed goods or services received, with credits for work such as sewing, livery work, or grain.

The ledger contains a loose livery stable bill and some scraps of paper, but no personal notations, although one entry implies that Lambert boarded with Harvey Bradish. Few entries provide specifics on the medical care provided: many read simply "journey, visit, medicine" while others provide a bit more specificity, such as extraction of teeth, vaccination, venesection (bleeding), and childbirth. Lambert prescribed a variety of medicines, from castor oil and camphor to opium and sulphur quinine.

Lambert's accounts indicate he kept a busy family practice with members of the Bradish, Fisk, Putnam, and Rockwood families as regular patients. A separate account listed his work for Upton, presumably for the town's poor. In addition, many of his patients were women, with accounts listed under women's names directly (compared with married women whose accounts are listed among their husband's).

Administrative information

Access

The collection is open for research.

Language:

English

Provenance

Acquired from Charles Apfelbaum, 1987.

Processing Information

Processed by Lisa May, July 1989.

Acknowledgments

Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Copyright and Use (More informationConnect to publication information)

Cite as: Roger Newton Lambert Account Book (MS 256 bd). Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.

Search terms

Subjects

  • Childbirth--Massachusetts--19th century
  • Medicine--Practice--Massachusetts--Upton--19th century
  • Phlebotomy--Massachusetts--19th century
  • Physicians--Massachusetts--Upton--Economic conditions--19th century
  • Poor--Medical care--Massachusetts--Upton--19th century
  • Teeth--Extraction--Massachusetts---19th century
  • Therapeutics--Massachusetts--19th century
  • Upton (Mass.)--Economic conditions--19th century
  • Vaccination--Massachusetts--19th century
  • Women's health services--Massachusetts--Upton--19th century

Link to similar SCUA collections

Names

  • Bradish family
  • Fisk family
  • Lambert, R. N
  • Putnam family
  • Rockwood family

Genre terms

  • Account books