Lietuvos mokslo istorikų ir filosofų bendrija

The 29th Baltic Conference on the History of Science

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2021

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2020

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2019

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2018

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2017

Konferencija Scientia et historia – 2016

The 29th Baltic Conference on the History of Science, Vilnius


Pauls Stradiņš Museum of the History of Medicine, Riga (Latvia)


Kārlis Barons’ Service in the Russian Empire Army in Šiauliai in 1892




Professor Kārlis Barons (1865–1944) was the director of the Dentistry Department and the Dentistry Institute of the University of Latvia’s Faculty of Medicine from 1921 until 1944. Barons’ professional work and contribution to the development of dentistry have been researched and analyzed more extensively than his early work. The collection of the Literature and Music Museum in Riga contains extensive correspondence between Barons and his family members. This offers a look at the life of the Barons family, as well as Latvian society between the 1860s and 1920s.


Of importance are letters written by Barons to his father, folklorist and social activist Krišjānis Barons (1835–1923). The letters were written between 1891 and 1893, with Barons describing the beginning of his professional career in Riga and his military service in Šiauliai (Lithuania). Kārlis Barons graduated from the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Moscow in 1891 and moved to Riga in June 1892 to open a private practice. In July of that year he was drafted into the army of the Russian Empire as a reserve physician. From August 1892 until 3 October 1892, he served in a field hospital in Šiauliai. Three letters in which Barons described his job at the field hospital, military duties and everyday life have survived. While in the army, Barons received a salary, as well as money to buy his uniform. He was also provided with other necessary things. Barons also wrote about a cholera epidemic in Riga and elsewhere in the Russian Empire, as well as about the possibility that he might continue to be a doctor in the army. Letters from Professor Kārlis Barons offer key evidence about the era in which he lived, reflecting the start of the young doctor’s work and his everyday life in and around Riga. They also offer information about poorly studied issues related to the work and service of doctors in the armed forces of the Russian Empire.