Theodore S. Bell, M.D.

  • Professor of the Theory and Practice of Medicine and Sanitary Science and the Science and Practice of Medicine and Public Hygiene, 1857-1882

Theodore S. Bell, M.D.
Theodore Bell, M.D.
Theodore S. Bell was born in Lexington and worked as a newsboy and a tailor before graduating with an MD from Transylvania University in 1852.

He immediately began practicing in Louisville and helped in the founding of the Louisville Medical Institute in 1837.

With Lunsford Pitts Yandell Sr., he founded two journals: Louisville Medical Journal in 1838 and Western Medical Journal in 1840.

He became professor of the theory and practice of medicine and sanitary science and the science and practice medicine and public hygiene at the University of Louisville in 1857 and continued until 1882 or 1884.

He held the theory that vegetable decomposition caused malaria, from which other fevers differ only in degree, and was consulted widely about fevers, even by the British Medical Association.

One of his teachers had been John Esten Cooke, the first professor of theory and practice of medicine at the Louisville Medical Institute and a strong advocate of the use of calomel.

Bell lost some patients under this treatment and thereafter taught passionately against it.

- Written by Daryll Anderson