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Horatio Storer and the Physicians’ Crusade against Abortion

By Dr. Jeff Mirus (bio - articles - email) | Jul 16, 2012

Frederick N. Dyer has become the premier historian of a small but important facet of American history, the efforts of Dr. Horatio Storer in the latter part of the 19th century to establish the medical specialty of gynecology and to unite physicians against abortion. Storer’s work was instrumental in establishing the laws against abortion which were characteristic of the United States by the early 20th century (and have since been swept away).

Storer was a brilliant medical doctor, a strong voice of moral reason, and a fierce opponent of quacks. His studies led to a greater seriousness in the treatment of the medical concerns specific to women. And his Physicians’ Crusade against Abortion had a significant impact on the recommendations of the American Medical Association in his day.

This is a story which would be largely forgotten were it not for Frederick Dyer’s research. Happily, Dr. Dyer has made available good deal of reference material on Horatio Storer (1830-1922) on a new website devoted to the topic: http://horatio

Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and See full bio.

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