Chiropractic Bohemian Conspiracy

The Bohemian Conspiracy started in chiropractic around 1903. It was a movement initiated by D.D. Palmer’s students who became his competitors to discredit him. Starting with Langworthy and Smith, it was suggested that D.D. Palmer took chiropractic from Iowan Bohemians, who practiced a form of spinal manipulation as a folk remedy. Not long after, this line of thinking shows up in the books of Davis, Gregory, and Forster, all leaders of rival schools.

This lecture was produced for the new online CE Chiropractic Program offered through The Institute Chiropractic (TIC). Members of TIC get big discounts for the CE courses offered through Sherman College. Other member benefits include access to over 160 clips, over 25 hours of content, a social network and an amazing archive.


  • The definitive article on the Bohemian Thrust and chiropractic was written by Gary Bovine.
  • The first chiropractic textbook to include Bohemian concepts was Modernized Chiropractic by Smith, Langworthy, and Paxson. The three ran The American School of Chiropractic and Nature Cure.
  • Alva Gregory included arguments about the Bohemians in his chiropractic text. Gregory ran the Palmer-Gregory School (even though Palmer was only involved with him for three months, Gregory kept his name on the corporate charter.)
  • Arthur Forster took up the Bohemian idea in his 1915 book, Principles and Practices of Chiropractic. Forster ran the National School of Chiropractic with Schultz.
  • Many chiropractic historians have included a history of spinal manipulation, which is an important aspect of history. However, without including the fact that such an approach was originated to discredit D.D. Palmer as the inventor of chiropractic, any history will be limited.
  • To view the other segments of this lecture please join The Institute Chiropractic.
  1. Simon, good as usual.

    When I read Lerner, I thought the whole tone was anti Palmer, and bordering anti chiropractic. Didn’t he imply that BJ was in a hypnotic state his whole life.

    Who are the proponents of the pro-Langworthy history? Non Palmer Grads, medical historians?

    I think if you discredit DD and BJ you discredit all of the profession and therefore make it look like a historical quirk among many healthcare movements. Mesmerism, the Kellog brothers, etc.

    Didn’t the Lerner report have all the pages re Dave Palmer missing by the way – not that this is relevant to ur paper. If so where can I get a complete Lerner report, I would like to re-read it.

    Remember, If u can marginalize their leader, then u can marginalize their movement. Recent years have seen scholarly works saying Jesus, had a brother, was married etc. In Politics, the founding fathers, Columbus, all are being redefined, by those who have some skin in the game.

    Keep at it, usually to combat a negative, u have to put out 10 positives. 10 papers? good luck

    RHK DC

    Go BJ and DD!

  2. Thank you Simon for an outstanding post! It is important to root out historical incongruencies especially when popular thought of today is based on them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2019 The Institute Chiropractic - Senzon Learning, Inc.