Massage At All Costs

By Patricia J. Benjamin
[The Story of Massage]

During World War I, injured soldiers returning to North America were rehabilitated in armed services hospitals staffed by specially trained physiotherapy technicians called reconstruction aides. Reconstruction programs in North America were based on work being done in England by orthopedic surgeons Sir Robert Jones and James B. Mennell. Both men believed that much of the success “attending orthopedic surgery in its applications to the necessities of our wounded could not be attained without the concomitant of massage … [which] must often precede, should frequently accompany, and must invariably follow, effective work by the surgeon,” as Mennell wrote in his 1920 text, Massage: Its Principles and Practice.  

Excerpted from The Emergence of the Massage Therapy Profession in North America (Curties-Overzet, 2015) by Patricia J. Benjamin. Find it at