Russell Kelso Carter (1849 to 1926, center) was a man of many professions and passions. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1849, he worked as a civil engineer, professor, chemist, sheep rancher, ordained minister, and physician. An accomplished musician, Carter penned many popular hymns. After antibiotics rescued him in 1898 from a serious bout of tuberculosis, he became an advocate of medicine and received medical training by 1900. Fifteen years later (cover, left; title page, right), Carter published The Sleeping Car, “Twilight”…, his energetic treatise on the formulation “H-M-C,” a combination of hyoscine (scopolamine), morphine, and cactin. Such so-called twilight anesthesia was a popular, though controversial, therapy for countering obstetric pain by providing confusional sedation and amnesia to mothers in labor. Carter’s book was written to help women “cultivate…the spirit of positive rebellion against pain. Help them throw off the yoke.” Carter characterized his personal experience with twilight anesthesia as a “sensation of quiet peace floated about me. Then sleep—natural, sound, sensationless sleep.” (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

Russell Kelso Carter (1849 to 1926, center) was a man of many professions and passions. Born in Baltimore, Maryland, in 1849, he worked as a civil engineer, professor, chemist, sheep rancher, ordained minister, and physician. An accomplished musician, Carter penned many popular hymns. After antibiotics rescued him in 1898 from a serious bout of tuberculosis, he became an advocate of medicine and received medical training by 1900. Fifteen years later (cover, left; title page, right), Carter published The Sleeping Car, “Twilight”…, his energetic treatise on the formulation “H-M-C,” a combination of hyoscine (scopolamine), morphine, and cactin. Such so-called twilight anesthesia was a popular, though controversial, therapy for countering obstetric pain by providing confusional sedation and amnesia to mothers in labor. Carter’s book was written to help women “cultivate…the spirit of positive rebellion against pain. Help them throw off the yoke.” Carter characterized his personal experience with twilight anesthesia as a “sensation of quiet peace floated about me. Then sleep—natural, sound, sensationless sleep.” (Copyright © the American Society of Anesthesiologists’ Wood Library-Museum of Anesthesiology.)

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Melissa L. Coleman, M.D., Penn State College of Medicine, Hershey, Pennsylvania, and George S. Bause, M.D., M.P.H., Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.