Artificial insemination during the American Civil War


I have rediscovered a fascinating story reported by L. G. Capers of Vicksburg, Missouri in the American Medical Weekly (131, 7 Nov. 1874) and quoted by The Lancet (476, 1875, I, 35).  It is about an incident which took place during the American Civil War.

On 12 May 1863, during a skirmish between Grant’s army and a few Confederates, a young friend of the author stumbled and fell to the ground.  At the same moment, a piercing scream was heard from a nearby house.

The wounded soldier had received a bullet which had travelled through his scrotum and taken off his left testicule.  The same bullet had apparently penetrated the left side of the abdomen of a seventeen-year-old girl, passing between the navel and the front part of the iliac bone touching the spine, and had disappeared inside her abdomen.  The young lady subsequently suffered from peritonitis but, after treatment, had completely…

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