May 30, 2019

The Nicholas Lecture: Book Launch for "Civil War Medicine: A Surgeon's Diary" by Robert Hicks, PhD, Director of the Mütter Museum


The Leslie Nicholas, MD Lecture

Book Launch & Signing for Civil War Medicine: A Surgeon's Diary by Robert Hicks, PhD, Director of the Mütter Museum

Join us for the world launch of Civil War Medicine: A Surgeon's Diary by Dr. Robert Hicks, based on the diary of a Civil War surgeon who participated in the Battle of Gettysburg and including essays about the diary by foremost historians of the medical Civil War. The subject of the book is Assistant Surgeon James Fulton, 143rd Pennsylvania Infantry Regiment. Dr. Hicks' talk will be followed by an "in conversation" with Anna Dhody, Curator of the Mütter Museum and Director of the Mütter Research Institute. 

The Civil War Exhibit of the Mütter Museum will be open for this event. A light reception created by Catering By Design and book signing will follow the program. Books will be available for purchase. 

Click here if you're interested in pre-ordering a copy of the book (to be released May 1, 2019).

Note for Mütter Museum Members: Individual and Student Members may purchase one discounted Mütter Member ticket to this event and Family Members may purchase two discounted Mütter Member tickets to this event.

Robert D. Hicks, PhD, is the director of the Mütter Museum and Historical Medical Library of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia. He also directs the F. C. Wood Institute and holds the William Maul Measey Chair for the History of Medicine. Formerly, he supervised exhibits, collections, and educational outreach at the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia. He has worked with museum-based education and exhibits for over three decades, primarily as a consultant to historic sites and museums. This work led Robert to obtain a doctorate in maritime history from the University of Exeter, United Kingdom. Concurrent with the museum consulting, Robert worked for the Commonwealth of Virginia as a senior program manager in criminal justice, providing managerial assistance throughout the state. Earlier, he performed criminal justice work in Arizona, and obtained BA and MA degrees in anthropology and archaeology at the University of Arizona. He also served as a naval officer with the U.S. Naval Security Group.

Leslie Nicholas, MD, FCPP, a Fellow of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, graduated from Temple University with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1933 followed by a medical degree in 1937. He completed his internship and residency in pathology at the former Philadelphia General Hospital. In 1940, he was awarded a fellowship in dermatology and syphilology at the University of Pennsylvania. 

During World War II, Dr. Nicholas worked for a year on the prevention of warfare gas burns. In 1943, he served in the Army as a dermatologist and he finished his service in 1946 at the rank of major.

Dr. Nicholas specialized in research and projects on the treatment, control, and prevention of venereal disease for the City Health Department. He taught pathology and was an associate in dermatology and syphilology at the University of Pennsylvania and was also a professor in dermatology at Hahnemann University Hospital Medical School. He served on the staffs of Philadelphia General Hospital, Graduate Hospital, Doctors’ Hospital, the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Skin and Cancer Hospital, Kensington Hospital, St. Luke’s and Children’s Medical Center, St. Joseph’s Hospital, and Hahnemann.

Dr. Nicholas was a diplomat of the American Board of Dermatology and Syphillogy, Hellenic Union of Dermatology and Venerology, and the Yugoslavian Dermatology Society. He contributed to medical textbooks and wrote more than 65 articles in medical journals.

Dr. Nicholas retired from his Center City practice in 1992 after 46 years.

This event is funded by the Leslie Nicholas Endowment, care of his nephew, Eugene Myers, MD. 

Questions? Email
Event registration is non-refundable, but is transferable to other people.

ASL interpretation is available for any event upon request. Please contact Meredith Sellers to place a request for an ASL interpreter or for any other accessibility accommodations.


The Mütter Museum helps the public appreciate the mysteries and beauty of the human body while understanding the history of diagnosis and treatment of disease.

  • 19 S 22nd Street
  • Philadelphia, PA 19103
Get Directions
  • Monday through Sunday
  • 10am–5pm
  • We are closed on Thanksgiving, December 24, December 25 and January 1