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In Photos: The Power of Poison Through Time

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Steedman's Powders

Credit: AMNH.
Although mercury is highly toxic, various forms of it have been used medicinally for thousands of years, even into the mid-20th century. Mercurous chloride,…Read More »





known as calomel, was used to treat a variety of maladies, including yellow fever. In the 1860s, calomel pills containing mercury were popular for conditions ranging from constipation to depression. Mercury was even used in teething powder until 1948, when it was banned for making children sick. The element mercury, along with other subjects, will be explored in the Museum’s upcoming exhibition The Power of Poison, opening on November 16.   Less «
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