On an early autumn day in 1848, a railway foreman named Phineas Gage suffered a terrible accident. A three-and -a-half-foot long, thirteen-pound tamping iron was literally blown through his head. The metal post entered under his cheek bone and exited the top of his skull. Amazingly, Gage survived the incident and lived another 12 years holding steady jobs and continuing to engage in his community. However, reports of a change in his personality abounded, eventually making him the most famous survivor of a traumatic brain injury in history. This page, created by University of Melbourne professor Malcolm McMillan, and now housed at the University of Akron, outlines the fascinating history of the event. Select Phineas Gage's Story to read about the man himself, next peruse Psychosocial Adaptation to look at Dr. McMillan's theories about Gage's recovery. Also, don't miss sections highlighting The Damage to Phineas Gage's Brain, Sites and Plaque, Anniversary at Cavendish, and other writings on the history and influence of this epic moment in the history of psychology.
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