James Phipps & Sarah Nelmes

Late 18th Century

United Kingdom

Year of great discovery/work

Edward Jenner inoculated 8-year-old James Phipps with matter from a cowpox sore on the hand of milkmaid Sarah Nelmes. Later, Jenner exposed the boy to smallpox through variolation—a process in which pus was dried until crusted, then ground up and then either inhaled as powder or injected into one’s vein. After the procedure, he remained healthy.

Did you know?
The cow from which Sarah Nelmes contracted cowpox was named Blossom.