Pharmacy counter and shelves, circa 1880. They were used to administer pharmaceuticals to patients at the Ararat Lunatic Asylum, a mental health hospital in Ararat Victoria Australia. Drugs dispensed were purgatives, emetics, blistering agents, leeches and more latterly sedatives such as chloral hydrate and paraldehyde.

Physical Description

Pharmacy consists of panelled cedar counter with desk at one end and cedar medicine shelves filling 2 walls of a small room. Left-hand end of counter fits flat against wall. Front and righthand end have round-topped skirtingboard and 14.5 x 34cm inset panels framed with beading. Countertop overhangs front and right end by 21cm, supported every 26cm by stepped buttresses. Corners rounded Side can be extended by closing a panelled half-door crowned by narrow counter. On top of counter at this end is sloping desk-top with leather covered lid and surrounded on 3 sides by panelled 52cm high partition, top half of which has a railing with slim, ornately turned poles. Under bench are shelves (originally with a row of drawers).

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