The Poisoner's Handbook By Deborah Blums Best Selling Book
1026 Words5 Pages
The film that I am reviewing, title “The Poisoner’s Handbook,” is based on Deborah Blums best-selling book, of the same title, which reflects on the most notorious cases between the years of 1918 and 1959 that were handled by Charles Norris, the chief medical examiner for New York City, also known and described by his peers as “the father of forensic toxicology in America,” and Alexander Oscar Gettler, toxicologist with the Office of Chief Medical Examiner of the City of New York, such as the fatal radium poisoning of the factory workers who contracted radiation poisoning from painting watch dials with self-luminous paint at the Orange, New Jersey watch factory around the year 1917 and other cases that involve dangerous poisons, like arsenic, methanol, lead, carbon monoxide, denatured alcohol, radium and thallium. Their renowned work led to tougher regulations by the government and the creation of the Food and Drug Administration. The film depicts how the average American’s medicine cabinet, in the early 1900s, was a treasure chest of dangerous poisons that could make you ill, put you in a coma, and even kill you. These poisons were readily found in health tonics, depilatory creams, teething medicine, and cleaning supplies.
In the early 1920s, medical examiners and coroners were appointed by the mayor and were responsible for investigating every suspicious death in New York City. The position was a political one and anyone, including musicians, painters, milkmen could