Sanitarian’s Handbook: Theory and Administrative Practice

Sanitarian’s Handbook: Theory and Administrative Practice

Pictured on the left is the 1957 printing is the first edition of the Sanitarian’s Handbook: Theory and Administrative Practice by Ben Freedman, MPH, MD, director of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Division of the Public Health Training and director of the Division of Preventive Medicine at the Louisiana State Department of Health; and assistant professor of Public Health Administration, Department of Tropical Medicine and Public Health at the Tulane School of Medicine in New Orleans, Louisiana. The first edition and subsequent editions were published by Peerless Publishing Company in New Orleans, Louisiana.

This first edition was predated in 1942 by the Sanitary Inspector’s Manual of the Louisiana Department of Health, also authored by Dr. Freedman. It provided the basis for the Sanitarian’s Handbook.

The book has 38 chapters contained in 1,400 pages. While it covers most of the environmental health practice, it also included detailed information on conditions encountered by the sanitarian that may only have some mention in law or regulation, as well as specific knowledge and skills necessary when certain conditions are encountered in the field. These unique topical areas include frozen desserts, egg control and grading, seafood and shellfish control, simple field tests, refrigeration, temporary measures of sanitary control, and making concrete. Don’t laugh, us old-timers used the chapter on making concrete numerous times.

The first edition book still has the original publisher’s card. It was purchased new and inscribed on its free endpaper by Carl E. Dickerson, an Indiana sanitarian, in 1964. 

Pictured on the right is the fourth and last edition of the Sanitarian's Handbook published in 1977. This copy was signed by Dr. Freedman in 1978.

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