Thursday, October 4, 2012

149. Early Indy Dental Records Book

    I ran across an interesting genealogy resource yesterday while doing some work in the Indiana State Library Manuscript Division, one of my favorite places.
    The resource in collection V71 is the "Wells Dental Register," donated by Nellie Wells Mason. This is a standardized record book, printed in 1855, and contains the dental records of G. A. Wells and Merit Wells from 1855 to 1874.
    The Wells dental office, according to the Indianapolis Directory of 1858-59, was located at 19 East Washington Street in Indianapolis. (The Directory is online at the IUPUI Library website.) The Register has an A to Z patient index in the front and is followed by daily records of appointments and dental work performed. Check the diagrams to see what your ancestors' teeth looked like!
     The 1860 census has Graham A. Wells, 27, born in NY, as a dentist in the 1st Ward. No listing for Merit Wells. The 1870 has Merrit Wells, 38, born in IN, as a dentist in Indy with a wife and daughter Nellie, age one month. On the 1880 both were practicing in downtown Indy. How they are connected I didn't find out.
     Anyway, this might be a totally unique resource for your Indy research. Check it out at ISL.

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