TIL that during the ‘leech craze’ of the 1800s, leech collectors (who were usually women) would wade into ponds with their skirts raised to attract the leeches to their bare legs. Some used animals—such as horses that were too old to work—instead of their own bodies to catch the leeches

Read more: https://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/objects-and-stories/medicine/blood

What do you think?

12 Points
Upvote Downvote


Leave a Reply
  1. My father-in-law, who was born in Brooklyn in the early 1920s, said several times when he or a sibling were sick, the doctor, who made house calls, put leeches on them.

  2. There’s still legitimate reasons to use leeches medically and I find that interesting, now the reasons are rare but still crazy. I feel the humor balancing era tends to make us think all medicine was quite behind while at least a few were trying new things and leading to modern medicine.

  3. Leech…Craze? 😳 I must now go educate myself. Edit: Oh! It was a cottage industry to supply Dr’s. I had this image of well to do collectors with jars of specimines displayed in the salon. 🤣

Leave a Reply