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History of Asbestos and the Law

Asbestos Litigation

Jon 9580

A historical review of knowledge leading up to the causal relationship between asbestos and disease.

Asbestos-related disease was reported in industry more than 70 years ago. Dr. H. Montague Murray in 1906 at the Charing Cross Hospital in London testified before a governmental commission inquiry about occupational disability that he had seen a man in 1898 who was very short of breath and who had worked in an asbestos factory. The man's lungs at autopsy were badly scarred. It was Dr. Murray's prediction that since the hazards of this exposure were now known, very few similar cases would occur in the future, and there was no need to provide compensation benefits.

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