Past Event

Civil War Field Embalming: A Demonstration of Period Technique

A Road Scholar Program by Jon Austin

Portraying Dr. Benjamin F. Lyford in the aftermath of the Battle of Gettysburg, Jon Austin offers a first-person presentation in the style of a nineteenth-century medical school lecture, using a re-enactor “corpse” as a visual aid. Austin addresses such topics as period medicine and chemistry, human anatomy, the verification of death, and the preparation of deceased soldiers’ remains for shipping and burial.

Also covered are such subjects as nineteenth-century mourning rituals, Lincoln’s funeral, and the ways in which modern funeral practices have developed over time.

For more information, please contact Krystal Gulley at