Thomas Skinner's chloroform mask, c 1865.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
Back view of mask. Thomas Skinner, Obstetric Physician to the Dispensaries in Liverpool, introduced this type of mask in 1862. Chloroform was dropped from a specially designed bottle onto the mask, which kept it off the patient's face. This technique continued to be used well into the 20th century. The mask is made of a wire frame covered with a gauze fabric and could fold up so that the physician could carry it in their pocket or hat. This example has a flannel cover and was made by Maw in England.