5th Stop: Brewer Room

The fifth stop on the Pharmacy Museum tour begins with a display case full of memorabilia from Willis R. Brewer, PhD, the third dean of the College of Pharmacy. In 1952, at the age of 33, Dr. Brewer became the youngest man ever appointed dean at the University of Arizona. He continued to serve the college until 1975, when he stepped down as dean, but remained active as a professor for several more years.

Across the hall from the display case is the entrance to a unique part of the History of Pharmacy Museum collection, the Willis R. Brewer Memorial Room. Filled with more mementos of Dr. Brewer’s contribution to the college, the room also exhibits a variety of pharmacy artifacts spanning more than 100 years of history. The elaborate glass and cherry wood display cabinets lining the walls of the room were originally used in the Huffman Pharmacy on the south side of Chicago. Built in the 1920s and measuring more than eight feet tall, these beautiful cases contain mirrors, leaded glass, pharmacy counters and dozens of drawers, each with more displays inside.

The Brewer Room is laid out like an old-time pharmacy. The checkered-tile floor echoes retail pharmacies of the late-19th and early-20th centuries. In those days, there might have been a soda fountain, a candy jar, a lunch counter, vibrant show globes, and, of course, a friendly pharmacist behind the counter. 

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