Marks-Hirschfeld Museum of Medical History

Explore of one Australia’s finest collections of medical instruments and memorabilia at the Marks-Hirschfeld Museum of Medical History.

Established initially as the Museum of Surgical and Scientific Instruments and Equipment in 1950, the museum was renamed in 1980.

The current name honours local Brisbane identities within the medical community – the Marks family, whose members served in the Australian Army Medical Corps during both WWI and WWII, and Dr Konrad Hirschfeld, a pioneering chest surgeon in Brisbane and past curator of the museum. 

Come visit the museum and discover innovative learning opportunities to inspire and educate all visitors.

 The Marks-Hirschfeld Museum of Medical History is free and open to the public. Tours are available Tuesday and Thursday mornings and can be booked through email at

The Collection

An estimated 5000 items and 500 photographs make up our collection. Ranging from medical equipment and instruments, to furniture, other medical memorabilia and even the bibliographic index of Queensland doctors, our collection tells the rich history of medicine in Queensland. The extensive library also houses early medical textbooks, journals, and art.

Our collection includes some incredible objects of national and international significance, such as the Brady and Martin X-ray Apparatus. Manufactured in 1896, it was used to x-ray hands and is among the earliest commercially manufactured pieces of x-ray equipment in the world.

Other amazing antique pieces include Lord Lister’s carbolic sprays used for antisepsis during surgery, the Patterson infant respirator and several early models of the sphygmograph, a pulse measuring device invented by Karl von Vierordt in 1855.

Among the library shelves you find the 18th century James Medical Dictionary and the WWII clinical diary of Dr Burnett Clarke, who recorded tropical diseases among Australian prisoners of war at the infamous Changi internment camp in Singapore.


The museum periodically holds free public exhibitions to highlight our amazing collection and celebrate special events.

Current exhibitions: Pioneering Women Doctors in Outback Queensland; and Medical Women at War 

Previous exhibitions: Innovations in Medicine, Wee Things (Urology), Teaching and Learning

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Support us

The museum is managed solely by a team of dedicated volunteers. Our generous philanthropic supporters are vital to the work of the museum, and we welcome donations in support of preservation and archival programs, exhibitions and educational activities.

Your gift will play a vital role in preserving medical history and help continue building a significant collection to deliver inspiring and engaging learning opportunities to our students, researchers and the community.

Ways to give

All gifts over $2 are tax deductible, and go directly to the Museum.

  • Phone: 07 3365 5063
  • Email:
  • Mail a cheque (made out to The University of Queensland) to UQ Advancement, Level 7, JD Story Building, Brisbane, Queensland 4072. Please include a note indicating your gift is in support of the Marks-Hirschfeld Museum.

If you would like to discuss making a donation for a specific purpose, opportunities for regular giving or leaving a bequest, we would love to hear from you. Please feel free to phone us on 07 3365 5063, or email

Donations to the collection are welcome. Please contact our curator if you have any objects or photographs of significance to Queensland medical history.


Marks-Hirschfeld Museum of Medical History

Mayne Medical Building
288 Herston Road
Herston Qld 4006


Phone: 07 3365 5423