A Contribution to Western Pennsylvania Pharmacy

A History of the Pittsburgh College of Pharmacy 1878-1958

Appendix V - Disjecta Membra

Document A

The Pharmaceutical Association of Allegheny County 1871

The Preamble of the Constitution as transcribed from the minutes of the Association is as follows:

"Whereas, The advancement of pharmaceutical knowledge and the elevation of professional character of Apothecaries and Druggists are dear to us in common with all disposed Pharmacists and

Whereas, a large portion of those in whose hands the practice of pharmacy now exists are not properly qualified for the responsible office it involves, chiefly by reason of the many difficulties that impede the acquirement of a correct knowledge of their business.

Therefore, We the members of the meeting now assembled in Pittsburgh September 20, 1871 composed of Apothecaries and Druggists from Pittsburgh, Allegheny, Birmingham and vicinity do hereby resolve to constitute ourselves into a permanent Association to meet monthly at such times and places as may hereafter be determined for more effectively accomplishing the objects for which we are now assembled and do adopt a constitution."


Article I.


Its aim shall be to unite the educated and reputable Pharmacists and Druggists of Allegheny County in the following objects:

  1. The advancement of the science and art of Pharmacy by diffusing scientific knowledge among Pharmacists and Druggists, fostering pharmaceutical literature and by all other means of advancing the profession.
  2. To establish the relations between Druggists, Pharmaceutists, Physicians and the people at large upon just principles which shall promote the public welfare and tend to mutual strength and advantage.
  3. To regulate the system of apprenticeship and Employment so as to prevent as far as practicable the evils flowing from deficient training in the responsible duties of preparing, dispensing and selling medicine.
  4. To suppress empyricism and discourge quackery and as much as possible to restrict the dispensing and sale of medicine to regularly Educated Druggists and Apothecaries.
  5. To uphold standards of authority in the Education, Theory and Practice of Pharmacy.
  6. To create and maintain a standard of professional honesty, equal to the amount of our professional knowledge with a view to the highest good and greatest protection to the public.

Article II.

This Association shall consist of active and contributing or honorary members.

Article III.

The Officers of this Association shall be a President; Two Vice-Presidents; A Recording Secretary; A Corresponding Secretary; and a Treasurer. All of whom shall be elected annually and hold office until an election of successors.

Article IV.

Every proposition to alter or amend this CONSTITUTION shall be submitted in writing and may be balloted for at the next meeting when upon receiving the votes of three-fourths of the members present, it shall become a part of the constitution.


Chapter I.

Of the President and Vice-Presidents.

Article I. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association, in his absence or inability, one of the Vice Presidents, or in the absence of all, a President pro tempore shall perform the duties of President.

Article II. In the absence of the Recording Secretary the President shall appoint a Secretary pro tem.

Article III. In meetings the President shall take the chair at the proper time; announce all business; receive all proper motions, resolutions, reports and communications, and order the vote upon all proper questions at the proper time.

Article IV. The President shall have the right to vote on all questions before the Association, but his name shall be called last.

Article V. He shall enforce order and decorum; it is his duty to hear all that is spoken in debate, and in case of personality or impropriety, he shall promptly call the speaker to order. He shall decide all questions of order, subject to the right of appeal, unless in cases where he prefers to submit the matter to the meeting; decide promptly who is to speak when two or more members rise at the same moment; and be careful to see that business is brought forward in proper order.

Article VI. He shall have the right to call a member to the chair in order that he may take the floor, in debate.

Article VII. He shall see that the Constitution and By-Laws are properly enforced.

Article VIII. He, with the assistance of the Two Vice-Presidents shall appoint all committees unless otherwise ordered by the Association.

Article IX. He shall sign the certificates of membership and countersign all orders on the Treasurer. He shall obey the Instructions of the Association and authenticate by his signature, when necessary its proceedings.

Article X. He shall present at each annual meeting a report of the operations of the Association during the year, with such information pertaining to its condition and prospects, and the object it has in view, together with such suggestions for its future management, as may seem to him proper.

Chapter II.

Of the Recording Secretary.

Article I. He shall keep fair and correct minutes of the proceedings of the meetings and carefully preserve all reports, essays and papers of every description received by the Association.

Article II. He shall read all papers handed to him by the President for that purpose, shall call and record the yeas and nays whenever they are required to be called and keep a "Roll Call".

Article III. He shall be ex-officio a member of the Executive Committee.

Chapter III.

Of the Corresponding Secretary.

Article I. He shall assist the Recording Secretary in his duties, shall inform the members of the meetings and shall attend to all public notices, and foreign correspondence.

Article II. He shall notify new appointments for membership of their election or rejection.

Chapter IV.

Of the Treasurer.

Article I. The Treasurer shall collect and take charge of the funds of the Association, keep a correct account of the same, he shall hold, sign and issue the certificates of membership.

Article II. He shall pay no money except on the order of the Secretary, countersigned by the President.

Article III. He shall report to the Executive Committee previous to each annual meeting the names of such members as have failed to pay their annual contribution and also the names of such as have failed to return their certificates of membership after having been officially disconnected with the Association, and having been duly notified to return them.

Article IV. He shall present a statement of his accounts at the annual meeting that they may be audited.

Chapter V.

Of Membership.

Article I. Every Pharmaceutist and Druggist of good moral and professional standing, whether in business on his own account, retired from business or employed by another, having served at least five years at the Drug and Apothecary Business, who after duly considering the objects of the Association and the obligations of its Constitution and By-Laws, are willing to subscribe to them, are eligible to membership.

Article II. Any person eligible to membership may make application in writing, with the endorsement of any two members of the Association in good standing, to any member of the Executive Committee, who shall report his application to the said committee. If after investigating his claims they shall approve of his election, they shall at the earliest time practicable, report his name to the Association and he may be elected by two-thirds of the members present on ballot.

Article III. No person shall be a member of this Association, nor shall his name be placed on the roll until he shall have signed the Constitution and paid in the Treasury the sum of three (3) Dollars as an initiation fee, and the annual contribution for the current year.

Article IV. Every member shall pay in advance to the Treasurer the sum of three (3) Dollars as his yearly contribution and is liable to lose his membership by neglecting to pay said contribution for two successive years.

Article V. Members shall be entitled on the payment of one Dollar to receive a certificate of membership signed by the President, one Vice-President, Recording Secretary, and Treasurer at the same time covenanting to return the same to the proper officer on relinquishing their connection with the Association.

Article VI. Persons constitutionally elected to membership become permanent members, and their membership can cease only by resignation, nonpayment of dues or by expulsion, as provided by these By-Laws.

Article VII. Resignation of membership shall be made in writing to the Recording Secretary or Treasurer, but no resignation shall be accepted from any one who is in arrears to the Treasury, unless otherwise ordered by the Association.

Article VIII. Any member may be expelled for improper conduct, or the violation of the Constitution, By-Laws or Ethics adopted by the Association, when such charges are proven, but no person shall be expelled unless he shall receive for expulsion two-thirds of the votes cast at some regular meeting.

Chapter VI.

Of Committees.

Article I. There shall be an Executive Committee consisting of 3 members and the Recording Secretary which shall be elected at each annual meeting.

Article II. They shall have the duty to examine all applications for membership and report on the same. Audit all accounts and attend to such other new and unfinished business as may from time to time be referred to them by the Association.

Chapter VII.

Of Meetings.

Article I. The regular meeting of the Association shall be held on the first Thursday of each month.

Article II. Special meetings may be held at such time as designated at regular meetings or on call of the President on the written application of five members, setting forth the object of such meeting-and at such time no other business shall be transacted.

Article III. Nine members shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business.

Article IV. Order of Business

  1. Roll Call
  2. Reading of Minutes
  3. Report of Committees
  4. Miscellaneous Business Election of Officers, etc. at proper time
  5. Reading of Essays. Discussions on scientific subjects relating to the profession
  6. Adjournment

Any motion to alter or amend these By-Laws shall fall under the rules of Article IV relating to alter Constitution. In all such points of order as are not noticed in these By-Laws the Association shall be governed by the Established usage in all assemblies governed by Parliamentary Rules.

The following names appear in the original minutes as subscribers to the Constitution: A. J. Rankin, Joseph Abel, G. W. Schmidt, A. Meckelburg, Henry B. Schwartz, Charles Hauck, Frederick H. Eggers, Jesse Sill, S. H. Druid, C. S. AhI, A. B. Hill, T. C. Waites, Harrison S. Lutz, Archibald Falconer, W. H. Brill, Peter Walter, Jr., David Davis, Jr., M. M. Schneider, James R. Clark, Louis Steitz, Newton M. McClarran, Joseph F. Neely, M. J. McGann. New members who also signed the Constitution at a later date were: Charles Abel, Henry Schmidt, J. Mitchell, A. Torrence, J. T. McKennan, H. C. Duvall, H. B. Slotterbeck, I. R. McClelland, C. G. Woods, W. W. Davis, Joseph Park, J. F. CaIdwell, Gotleib Eisenbeis, W. Hughes, Joseph Kimmel, W. H. Whitmore, James B. Graham.

Code of Ethics

Pharmacy being a profession which demands knowledge, skill and integrity on the part of those engaged in it, and being associated with the medical profession in the responsible duties of preserving the public health and dispensing the useful thought often dangerous agents, adapted to the care to disease, its members should be united on some general principles to be observed in the several relations to each other, to the medical profession and to the public and the members of the Pharmaceutical Association of Allegheny County do now agree upon the following principles for the government of their conduct.

Article I. As the Practice of Pharmacy can only become uniform by the adoption of the National Pharmacopoeia as a guide in the preparation of official Medicines, by open and candid intercourse among Pharmaceutists and by encouraging that Esprit de Corps which will prevent the disreputable practices arising from injurious competition and the use of Secret formulae. Therefore it is agreed by the Members of the Association to use solely the National Pharmacopoeia.

Article II. Whilst the members of this Association do not at present consider themselves in a condition to abandon the Sale of Secret or Quack Medicines, yet they will recommend the propriety of discouraging their Employment when called upon for an opinion as to their merits.

Article III. As the practice of Pharmacy and the practice of Medicine belong to the province of distinct Professions and as a Pharmaceutical education does not qualify one for the responsible offices of the physician, we should where it is practicable refer applicants for medical aid to regular physicians.

Article IV. We hold it to be highly censurable for an Apothecary to allow a percentage or a commission to Physicians on the prescriptions as it is unjust to the public and hurtful to the independence and self respect to both parties.

Article V. The Apothecary should be remunerated by the public for his knowledge and skill and in his charges should be regulated by the time consumed in the preparation as well as by the Articles sold, although location and other circumstances necessarily affect the rate of charges at different establishments; no Apothecary should intentionally undersell his neighbors with a view to their injury.

Article VI. As Physicians are liable to err in writing their prescriptions the Pharmaceutist should always consult the Physician before proceeding, when he deems a mistake has been made, it is his duty to accomplish the interview if possible, without compromising the reputation of the physician. On the other hand when Pharmaceutists commit an Error involving serious consequences the physician, knowing the numerous sources of Error should feel bound to screen him from undue censure, unless in case of ignorance or culpable negligence.

Article VII. As the Apothecary should be able to distinguish between good and bad Drugs in most cases and as the substitution of a weak or inert Drug for an active one, may negatively be productive of serious consequences-we hold that the intentional Sale of impure Drugs and Medicines from motives of Competition or desire of Gain, when pure Articles of the same kind may be obtained, is highly culpable and that, it is the duty of Every honest Apothecary and Druggist to expose all such fraudulant acts as may come to his Knowledge.

Article VIII. As compounding prescription and dispensing medicine at retail should form no part of the business of the wholesale Druggist and is highly injurious to our trade, we cannot be expected to make our purchases from those who are addicted to any of the aforementioned practices. This Article does not apply to those who have wholesale and retail stores combined.

Article IX. As there are many powerful substances that rank as poisons, which are constantly kept by the Apothecaries and prescribed by physicians and which are only safe in their hands, such as Arsenic, Vegetable Alkaloids, Opium, Ergot, Cantharides, Oil of Savin, etc. etc. we hold that the Apothecary is not justified in selling these powerful agents indiscriminately to persons unqualified to administer them and that a prescription should always be required, except in those cases, when the poisons are intended for the destruction of animals or vermin-and in those instances only with the guarantee of a responsible person and registering his name, address and the poison sold in a proper book kept for that purpose (as according to Penal Code of Penna.)-and we hold that when there is good reason to believe that the purchaser is habitually using opiates or stimulants to excess, Every Conscientious Apothecary should discourage such practice.

Article X. We hold that the indiscriminate sale of Wines and Liquors is very unprofessional and disgraceful and should only be dispensed in case when used for Medicinal purposes only.

Article XI. No apprentice to the business of Apothecary should be taken for a less term than three years unless he has already served a portion of that time in an establishment of good character.