Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Exhibit Snapshots: Dental Anomalies featured in "Impressions in Time"

It's been a lot of fun showing visitors our winter exhibit, "Impressions in Time: The Growth of the OHSU School of Dentistry," which was beautifully curated by University Archivist Max Johnson. In preparation for a poster display at the upcoming Oregon Dental Convention (April 9-11 at the Oregon Convention Center), we had occasion to photograph the exhibit and its artifacts. I just had to share these "glamour shots" of the biggest crowd-pleasers of the exhibit, the Ernest Starr Memorial Museum of Dental Anomalies. 

From the exhibit text:
For the last 60 years, this collection was housed in the Marquam Hill School of Dentistry building, where it was a regular fixture in the lives of many in the School of Dentistry.  The collection includes a wide variety of dental anomalies collected by Dr. Ernest E. Starr (North Pacific Dental College Class of 1907) from his patients and those of his colleagues.  The collection was donated by Dr. Starr in 1946 and was housed in the school until 2014.   The collection contains over 500 specimens of dental anomalies, including examples such as  a four-rooted upper molar, hypercementosis, and calculus on a lower anterior. 
Originally stored in a glass case on a plywood display stand with labels, OHSU Historical Collections & Archives worked with the School of Dentistry to relocate the collection to a secure storage space in 2014.  Archives staff housed the collection in archival storage containers and make every effort to ensure the preservation of these fascinating objects for future generations.
Apparently the dental anomalies were sometimes known colloquially among SOD faculty & students as the "freaky teeth" - take a gander at these specimens and you may understand why!

The collection has a whole exhibit case to itself - and these aren't even all of them!

In the land of the dental anomalies...
According to the collection's original index, this specimen & x-ray set is an example of "[r]esorption – lower 2nd molar by impacted 3rd molar" 

This is actually my favorite shot of the anomalies - It looks like it belongs in the opening credits of "American Horror Story"!
As great as these photos are, you really have to see the specimens in person to appreciate the uniqueness of these artifacts. Come and visit our exhibit, "Impressions in Time: The Growth of the OHSU School of Dentistry" in the OHSU Library, on the 3rd floor of the BICC at OHSU's Marquam Hill campus. The dental anomalies await!

Update: Check out this great video of Dr. Henry Clarke talking about the collection and other SOD artifacts, when they were on display in the former SOD building, as first posted by Maija in 2012:

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