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History of Chiropractic: The First Adjustment

Did you know that the first person to be adjusted was an Afro-American janitor named Harvey Lillard? William Harvey Lillard was the janitor at the Ryan building in Davenport, Iowa with D.D. Palmer's office was located.

D.D. noticed that Harvey was deaf but after getting to know Harvey he realized that he was not deaf his entire life. Harvey shared with D.D. that he lost his hearing when he bent over in a small space and felt a pop is his spine. It was after that pop that his hearing stared to decline and he had been deaf for over 17 years.

D.D. Palmer concluded that a vertebrae had moved from its normal position and created pressure on Harvey's spinal cord causing the loss of his hearing:

I reasoned that if a vertebra was replaced, the man's hearing should be restored. With this object in view, a half hours talk persuaded Harvey Lillard to allow me to replace it. I racked it into position by using the spinous process as a lever and soon the man could hear as before.

After successfully "curing" Harvey's deafness, D.D. Palmer placed an ad in the Davenport news that he had found the cure for deafness. After treating many patients from that ad D.D. Palmer was not able to re-create such success. However, D.D. started to notice that other conditions were improving such as; sciatica, migraines, digestive complaints, epilepsy, heart problems, the flu, toothaches - organic conditions, not neck aches and backaches.

Chiropractic was never about manipulation. It was always about specific care.

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