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Cooper, Sir Astley Paston (1768-1841) and Travers, Benjamin (1783-1858)

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 MSS.1861-1862
Held at: Wellcome Library
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Full title: Cooper, Sir Astley Paston (1768-1841) and Travers, Benjamin (1783-1858)
Date(s): 1818-1819
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 2 volumes
Name of creator(s): Cooper | Sir | Astley Paston | 1768-1841 | 1st Baronet | surgeon
Travers | Benjamin | 1783-1858 | surgeon
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Sir Astley Paston Cooper was born in Brooke Hall, Norfolk, in 1768. He was educated at home. He was articled to his uncle, William Cooper, senior surgeon at Guy's Hospital in London, in 1784. He lived in the house of Henry Cline, surgeon at nearby St Thomas's Hospital, whom he became apprenticed to instead. He became Cline's anatomy demonstrator in 1789, and he shared the lectures on anatomy and surgery with Cline, in 1791. He attended lectures by Desault and Chopart in Paris, in 1792. Cooper taught at St Thomas's and worked in dissections and lectured in anatomy and surgery, during the 1790s. A compilation of notes based on his lectures was published in 1820 titled Outlines of Lectures on Surgery, which went through many editions.

From 1793 until 1796 Cooper was also lecturer in anatomy at the Company of Surgeons (after 1800 the Royal College of Surgeons). In 1800 his uncle, William Cooper, resigned as surgeon to Guy's Hospital and Cooper was elected to the post. He was elected Professor of Comparative Anatomy at the Royal College of Surgeons in 1813-1815. He became a member of the court of examiners of the College in 1822, and he served as President twice, in 1827 and 1836. He was also a Vice-President of the Royal Society, to whose fellowship he had been elected in 1802, and won the Society's Copley medal. He was a member of the Physical Society at Guy's. the Medico-Chirurgical Society, and the Pow-Wow, a medical dining club started by John Hunter.

He was created a baronet in 1821. He died in 1840.

Benjamin Travers was born in Cheapside, London, in 1783. He was educated at the grammar school in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, and then privately. He was a pupil of Astley Cooper from 1800-1806. During this time he gave occasional demonstrations and set up a weekly clinical society. He took his diploma and became MRCS in 1806. He was appointed demonstrator of anatomy at Guy's Hospital, and was appointed surgeon to the East India Company's warehouses and brigade in 1809. He was elected surgeon to St Thomas' Hospital in 1815, as well as the London Infirmary for Diseases of the Eye (now Moorfields Eye Hospital), where he succeeded Astley Cooper, and remained until 1816. He resigned his joint lectureship with Astley Cooper in 1819. He began to lecture again in 1834, with Frederick Tyrell at St Thomas' Hospital. He was appointed surgeon to Queen Victoria in 1837 and to Prince Albert in 1840. He was elected FRCS in 1813; Member of Council, 1839-1858; Examiner in surgery, 1841-1858; Chairman of the Board of Midwifery Examiners, 1855; Vice-President, 1845, 1846, 1854 and 1855; President, 1847 and 1856; and he was Huntarian Orator in 1838. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1813. He was elected president of the Hunterian Society in 1827, as well as President of the Royal Medical and Chirurgical Society. He died in 1858.


Scope and content/abstract:

A course of lectures on the Principles and Practice of Surgery, delivered by Astley Paston Cooper and Benjamin Travers at the Theatre of St. Thomas's Hospital, during the years 1818-1819. Produced in London.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

The papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to Archives and Manuscripts material, after the completion of a Reader's Undertaking.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies/photographs/microfilm are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds, and that photographs cannot be photocopied in any circumstances. Readers are restricted to 100 photocopies in twelve months. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

Finding aids:

Described in: S.A.J. Moorat, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts on Medicine and Science in the Wellcome Historical Medical Library (London: Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, 1962-1973).

Archival Information

Archival history:

Armorial book-plate of Duncan E. Lewis pasted inside the upper cover of Vol. 1.

Immediate source of acquisition:

Purchased 1931.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Copied from the Wellcome Library catalogue by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
In compliance with ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description - 2nd Edition (1999); UNESCO Thesaurus, December 2001; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Feb 2009

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