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The Cotter Medical History Museum

The Cotter Medical History Museum maintains 40 static displays in Christchurch’s hospitals, clinics, health centres and laboratories. The museum is based at Hillmorton Hospital, sharing a building with the Hereford Centre. Volunteers are normally on site from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., Monday and Friday. A guide can be on site at other times, by appointment.

The Trust collects historic artefacts, photographs, books and documents relating to all aspects of health care: surgery, medicine, nursing, dentistry, laboratory and administration.

The Stephen Clark Microscope Collection in the public foyer of the University of Otago, Christchurch, is an outstanding exhibit.

At the Isaac Conservation and Wildlife Heritage Trust’s Heritage Village The Cotter Medical History Trust has equipped a school dental clinic and a house with a 1940s doctor’s surgery, operating theatre and medical and nursing exhibits.

The late Pat Cotter, founder of the Trust, amassed biographical notes on over 1,000 Canterbury doctors. Brief accounts of these notes are now being added to the Cotter Medical History Trust collection on The Community Archive website. Enquiries welcomed.

Pat’s extraordinary life is the subject of a biography: Tonsils to Toenails: the life of Pat Cotter, Christchurch surgeon and tree farmer.

Rachel Milner at a display cabinet
Rachel Milner at a display cabinet
Chalmers-Military-Hospital-Artificial-Limb-and-Splint-Department 1919-1921
Chalmers Military Hospital Artificial Limb and Splint Department 1919-1921