Welcome to our column, in which we will be showcasing the dental procedures and implements of yesteryear, through pictures and the stories linked with them.
A woman preparing for an at home tooth extraction, early 1920s.
George Washington’s dentures. Contrary to legend, it was not made of wood, but was made of horse, monkey and human teeth. The jaws were held together with springs, so they made a creaking sound every time the person opened or closed their mouth. Do you see the gap on the lower row there? The entire contraption was built around George Washington’s one last, remaining intact tooth.
One of the first dental x-rays ever made, 1901.
One of the first instances of dental prosthesis. This was found by archaeologists in Egypt, and is guessed to be form around 2000 BC. The teeth come from a donor, and were wound together with a gold wire, which was bound to adjacent teeth.
Mobile dentistry unit from the First World War, made from the loading zone of a truck. The unit served on the French front, and treated soldiers fighting on the front in 1915.