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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Cavendish in Windsor County, Vermont — The American Northeast (New England)
 

The Gage Accident

1848

 

—Cavendish —

 
The Gage Accident Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin Craft, May 20, 2011
1. The Gage Accident Marker
Inscription. One of the most remarkable events in medical history occured about ¾ mile (1 km) from here.

On 13th September 1848, Phineas P. Gage, a railroad construction foreman from Lebanon (NH), suffered massive brain damage when a 3ft 7in (107 cm) long, 13¼ Pound (6 kg) tamping iron was accidentally blown completely through his head.

Under the care of Dr John Martyn Harlow, the Cavendish physician, Gage soon recovered physically but was mentally greatly changed. Once an efficient and capable foreman, he was now increasingly erratic, irritable and profane. His employers could not reinstate him and his friends observed that he was “no longer Gage”.

According to Dr Harlow, Phineas later appeared with Barnum’s Museum in New York, worked at the Dartmouth Inn in Hanover (NH), and drove stagecoaches in Chile. He died in San Francisco of epilepsy on 21st May 1860. His skull and the tamping iron are in the Warren Anatomical Museum at Harvard University.

Gage’s accident was one of the first documented cases in medicine showing the relationship between personality and the front sections of the brain.
 
Erected

The Gage Accident Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin Craft, May 20, 2011
2. The Gage Accident Marker
1998 by Cavendish Chamber of Commerce and Cavendish Historical Society.
 
Marker series. This marker is included in the Believe It or Not marker series.
 
Location. 43° 22.951′ N, 72° 36.5′ W. Marker is in Cavendish, Vermont, in Windsor County. Marker is at the intersection of Main Street (Vermont Route 131) and High Street, on the right when traveling west on Main Street. Click for map. Marker is in this post office area: Cavendish VT 05142, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 9 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Abby Maria Hemenway (approx. 4.6 miles away); Bomber Crash on Hawks Mountain / Crew of B-29A #44-62228 Crashed Perkinsville, Vermont 15 June 1947 (approx. 4.7 miles away); Indian Stones (approx. 5.7 miles away); Salmond Bridge (approx. 6.8 miles away); Revolutionary War Campground on the Crown Point Road (approx. 7.8 miles away); Vermont Gold Rush (approx. 7.9 miles away); Chester Depot (approx. 8 miles away); Chester Civil War Memorial (approx. 8.2 miles away).
 
More about this marker. Marker includes
The Gage Accident Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin Craft, May 20, 2011
3. The Gage Accident Marker
Map of site of accident
a chronology of Phineas Gage's life, a map indicating the location of the accident as well as an image of Dr Harlow and Gage's skull with the tamping rod.
 
Also see . . .
1. Phineas Gage - Wikipedia. (Submitted on July 7, 2011, by Kevin Craft of Bedford, Quebec.)
2. Phineas Gage - Roadside America. (Submitted on July 7, 2011, by Kevin Craft of Bedford, Quebec.)
 
Categories. Notable EventsRailroads & StreetcarsScience & Medicine
 
The Gage Accident Marker image. Click for full size.
By Kevin Craft, May 20, 2011
4. The Gage Accident Marker
Passage of tamping iron through Phineas Gage's head marked by arrow
 
 
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Kevin Craft of Bedford, Quebec. This page has been viewed 1,311 times since then and 38 times this year. This page was the Marker of the Week Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on , by Kevin Craft of Bedford, Quebec. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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