Located on the first floor of the Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences’ O'Brien Building, the Throop Museum provides an opportunity to visualize life more than a century ago.
The various pieces in the collection combined with the prescription and business records kept by meticulous shopkeepers give a glimpse into life in rural America during the 19th and early 20th centuries.
The popularity of the Thoop Museum extends far beyond the walls of the College. The Throop was even once featured in a 2016 episode of the Travel Channel show “Mysteries at the Museum”!
In 1938, the College acquired the Throop Drugstore as an historical museum. It was moved to the College in its entirety where it was carefully reconstructed using all of the original contents and materials that were available, and it has remained a source of pride ever since.
In an effort to improve the facility and move it to a prominent location, the Museum was relocated to the first floor of the O'Brien Building in 2001. During the move, attention was given to every detail in order to maintain the integrity of the original structure. The tin ceiling, tile floor, and even the paint colors were thoroughly researched to ensure they were appropriate to the period.
The expanded Throop includes collections of:
- Show globes
- Porcelain, wooden, and metal mortars and pestles
- An extensive collection of apothecary bottles and jars
Balances, pill machines, grinders for crude drugs, prescription books (see slideshow below), and cork presses are displayed on the counters. These artifacts are a few of the tools a pharmacist would use to compound medications in the 1800s.
The Museum's collection of apothecary bottles and jars are grouped on the shelves by era:
- Paper labeled bottles circa 1800
- Patent Medicines circa 1800
- Glass labeled bottles circa 1860
- Herbal preparations circa 1860
- Homeopathic Medicines circa 1880
These items include large percolators, mortars and pestles, balances, suppository machines, cachet machines and a brass sieve collection.
Also on display are several extensive collections of bottles, jars and tins produced by the major drug companies in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.