Historical information

Dr Bernard Johnson was elected on December the 6th December 1952 as the Faculty's first honorary Fellow. At the time, Johnson was the Dean of the Faculty of Anaesthetists, Royal College of Surgeons, England. He was invited to visit Australia to receive his award and in 1953 Johnson received his award and brought with him a notable gift being the local Dean's medal of office which was presented on behalf of the Royal College of Surgeons. Johnson had previously met with Ivan Jose and H.J. Daly by providing advice for the establishment of an Australasian Faculty. Johnson is a significant figure as a pioneer into intravenous anaesthesia into Great Britain. He then turned his attention to improving dental anaesthesia. Working with fellow colleagues R R Macintosh and W S McConnell, they established the ‘Mayfair Gas Company’, primarily for dental anaesthesia, but also provided anaesthesia for general surgery during honorary hospital sessions. Johnson participated in the development of the Faculty of Anaesthetists within the Royal College of Surgeons. A founding member of the Board of Faculty, he served as Vice-Dean and then was the second Dean (1952-5), a role which provided a seat on the council of the RCS England.

Physical description

A 9 carat gold [375] oval shaped Dean's Medal of the Faculty of Anaesthetists, Royal Australasian College of Surgeons secured onto a red coloured woven tape by two large gold links. Obverse depicts in coloured enamel secured onto base the RACS coat of arms and crest. Engraved around the sunken diameter are the Faculty and College names. The reverse side has the presentation details inscribed onto a plaque secured onto the main piece with three rivets with hallmarks on both the message plaque and the outer rim. The original red leather box is in poor condition. Printed on the inside silk cover are the maker's marks.

Inscriptions & markings

[obverse] THE FACULTY OF ANAESTHETISTS / ROYAL AUSTRALASIAN COLLEGE OF SURGEONS [reverse] PRESENTED / BY THE DEAN / DR BERNARD JOHNSON / ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF / THE FACULTY OF ANAESTHETISTS / OF THE ROYAL COLLEGE OF / SURGEONS OF ENGLAND / AT THE INAUGURAL MEETING / 17th APRIL 1953 [hallmarks on reverse] GAS CO LTD 9 375 R Edinburgh? [black print on inside box cover] By appointment silversmiths to / THE LATE KING / GEORGE VI / THE [goldsmith's logo] / GOLDSMITHS & SILVERSMITHS / COMPANY LTD / CROWN JEWELLERS / incorporating GARRARD & CO / 112 REGENT STREET, LONDON W. I.