He wanted the moon: the madness and medical genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and his daughter's quest to know him

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A mid-century doctor's raw, unvarnished account of his own descent into madness, and his daughter's attempt to piece his life back together and make sense of her own.   Texas-born and Harvard-educated, Dr. Perry Baird was a rising medical star in the late 1920s and 1930s. Early in his career, ahead of his time, he grew fascinated with identifying the biochemical root of manic depression, just as he began to suffer from it himself. By the time the results of his groundbreaking experiments were published, Dr. Baird had been institutionalized multiple times, his medical license revoked, and his wife and daughters estranged. He later received a lobotomy and died from a consequent seizure, his research incomplete, his achievements unrecognized.

Mimi Baird grew up never fully knowing this story, as her family went silent about the father who had been absent for most of her childhood. Decades later, a string of extraordinary coincidences led to the recovery of a manuscript which Dr. Baird had worked on throughout his brutal institutionalization, confinement, and escape. This remarkable document, reflecting periods of both manic exhilaration and clear-headed health, presents a startling portrait of a man who was a uniquely astute observer of his own condition, struggling with a disease for which there was no cure, racing against time to unlock the key to treatment before his illness became impossible to manage. 

Fifty years after being told her father would forever be "ill" and "away," Mimi Baird set off on a quest to piece together the memoir and the man. In time her fingers became stained with the lead of the pencil he had used to write his manuscript, as she devoted herself to understanding who he was, why he disappeared, and what legacy she had inherited. The result of his extraordinary record and her journey to bring his name to light is He Wanted the Moon , an unforgettable testament to the reaches of the mind and the redeeming power of a determined heart.

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9780804137492
9781101890059
9780804137478
9780804137485
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Grouped Work ID c735fc24-c6e4-005f-dfd6-08f4885c94d2
Grouping Title he wanted the moon the madness and medical genius of dr perry baird and his daughters quest to know
Grouping Author baird mimi
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2018-09-23 23:04:45PM
Last Indexed 2018-09-24 00:10:32AM

Solr Details

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auth_author2 Claxton, Eve.
author Baird, Mimi.
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detailed_location_catalog Bellevue - Adult Non-Fiction, Main Library - Adult Non-Fiction
display_description The author pieces together the story of her absent father's life, beginning with his advancements in isolating the biochemical root of manic depression, which he then began to suffer from himself, leading to years of institutionalization and confinement.
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owning_library_catalog Nashville Public Library
owning_location_catalog Bellevue, Bellevue Kids, Main Kids, Main Library
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publishDate 2015
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subject_facet Baird, Perry -- Mental health, Manic-depressive illness -- United States -- History, Manic-depressive persons -- United States -- Biography, Physicians -- United States -- Biography
title_display He wanted the moon : the madness and medical genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and his daughter's quest to know him
title_full He Wanted the Moon The Madness and Medical Genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and His Daughter's Quest to Know Him, He wanted the moon : the madness and medical genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and his daughter's quest to know him / Mimi Baird ; with Eve Claxton
title_short He wanted the moon :
title_sub the madness and medical genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and his daughter's quest to know him
topic_facet Baird, Perry, Biography & Autobiography, History, Manic-depressive illness, Manic-depressive persons, Medical, Mental health, Nonfiction, Physicians, Psychology