The Chiropractic Story

  • The Birth of Chiropractic

    The birth of Chiropractic began on September 18, 1895 in Davenport, Iowa.  Daniel David Palmer (D.D.) is known as the founder or father of chiropractic.  His initial adjustment on the above date was described by himself as the following:  Harvey Lillard, a janitor in the Ryan Block, where I had my office, had been so deaf for 17 years that he could not hear the racket of a wagon on the street or the ticking of a watch.  I made inquiry as to the cause of his deafness and was informed that when he was exerting himself in a cramped, stooped position, he felt something give in the back and immediately became deaf.  An examination showed a vertebra racked from its normal position.  I reasoned that if that vertebra was replaced, the man’s hearing should be restored.  With this object in view, a half-hour talk persuaded Mr. Lillard to allow me to replace it.  I racked it into position by using the spinous process as a lever and soon the man could hear as before.  There was nothing “accidental” about this, as it was accomplished with an object in view, and the result expected was obtained.  There was nothing “crude” about this adjustment.  It was specific, so much so that no chiropractor has equaled it.

    D.D. Palmer reasoned and explored further that displaced vertebrae in different areas of the spine could affect the nerves going to those organs and cause problems.  In other words, he was looking to treat the cause of disease, not the symptom.  D.D. had a new method of healing but no name for it.  The Reverend Samuel Weed, who was a patient of D.D.’s, came up with the name.  Cheir is Greek for hand and praktos is Greek for done by.  So Chiropractic means done by hand.  So the discovery was named and a new era was born.  Formal Chiropractic education began in early 1898.  D.D. went on to write: …The cause of disease is in the sufferer, and the cause must be corrected.  If every part of the human body was in its natural place there would be no friction, no inflammation, no fever, no weakness…why not remove the pressure, adjust the framework, and take the strain off those sensitive nerves?

    On January 6, 1902, four students graduated as Doctors of Chiropractic.  Among them was D.D.’s son Bartlett Joshua (B.J.) who would go on to become the promoter and developer of Chiropractic.  When D.D. died in 1913, B.J. was left to fully direct the profession even though by 1910 he was already highly engaged.  B.J. truly advertised and brought Chiropractic to the world with education, organization, public relations and litigation.  He was President of The Palmer School of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa.  1n 1922, he brought Chiropractic to radio.  He wrote many books on Chiropractic during his career.  He died in 1961 and his son, David Daniel assumed the role of President of the Palmer School of Chiropractic.  Today, there are Chiropractic colleges all over the world with almost 100,000 Chiropractors alone here in the U.S. 

    The following help to show the validity and benefits of Chiropractic:

  • Chiropractic Care and The 1918 Influenza Pandemic

    In 1918, the Influenza Epidemic swept the world.  Here are some of the Chiropractic records of this period:  During the 1918 influenza epidemic, Davenport Iowa, medical doctors treated 4,953 Influenza cases with 274 deaths.  At the same time, 150 chiropractors, students and faculty of Palmer School of Chiropractic  treated 1,635 cases during the Influenza epidemic with only one death. 

    Oklahoma Chiropractors reported 3,490 cases of Influenza with 7 deaths during the 1918 Influenza epidemic.  Medical doctors gave up on 233 Influenza patients so Chiropractors were called in and saved all but 25 with Chiropractic care.

  • 1988 East-West Journal

    Dr. Ronald Pero, chief of Cancer Prevention Research at New York’s Preventive Medicine Institute and professor in Environmental Health at New York University studied individual’s susceptibility to various chronic diseases.  He measured 107 individuals who had received long-term Chiropractic care.  The chiropractic patients showed a 200% greater immune competence than people who had not received Chiropractic care and a 400% greater immune competence than people with cancer or serious diseases.  The DNA repairing enzymes were just as present in long-term senior groups as they were in the younger groups. 

    He concluded: “Chiropractic may optimize whatever genetic abilities you have so that you can fully resist serious disease…I have never seen a group other than this show a 200% increase over normal patients.”

  • The Winsor Autopsies

    In 1921, Dr. Henry Winsor, a medical doctor in Pennsylvania, posed the question: “Chiropractors claim that by adjusting one vertebra, they can relieve stomach troubles and ulcers; by adjusting another, menstrual cramps, and by adjusting others, conditions such as kidney disease, constipation, heart disease, thyroid conditions, and lung diseases may resolve-but how?”  He planned to dissect human and animal cadavers to see if there was a relationship between any diseases organs and the vertebra associated with the nerves that went to the organ.  Here are his results:  “221 structures other than the spine were found diseased.  Of these, 212 were from the same sympathetic (nerve) segments as the vertebrae in curvature.”  This is almost a 96% correlation rate!!

We never know how far reaching something we may think,

say or do today will affect the lives of millions tomorrow.

B. J. Palmer