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In Memorium of Humphry Osmond
by Tod H. Mikuriya
Feb 13 2004
Citation:   Mikuriya TH. "In Memorium of Humphry Osmond". Erowid. Feb 2004.
I personally was acquainted with Humphry Osmond and spent many hours in conversation with this remarkable and amazing treasure to science.

He was director of the New Jersey Bureau of Research in Neurology and Psychiatry and coordinated a diversity of psychotropic drug research. He coined the term 'psychedelic' and was the physician who administered the mescaline to Aldous Huxley that motivated the writing of Doors of Perception.

He legitimatized the personal introspective scientific explorative use of psychedelic drugs. This was (and is) considered heresy by the psychological and psychiatric communities, definitely rejected and disparaged by hobbesian mechanikers of academia and laboratory where introspection and subjective conscious are dirty words.

Some twenty years after these experiences I learned that he had connections with the CIA and MI-6 that permitted him and his Bureau of Research safe access to psychedelic drugs. Part of the Bureau was also devoted to voyeuristic social studies of the era when LSD escaped the CIA and leaked out into Harvard and Palo Alto. From the spooks to intelligentsia.

Humphry Osmond and his Bureau were interested in the phenomena of biological bases for schizophrenia and the similarities with psychedelic drug-induced mental states, and detection of metabolic markers. Kryptopyrrole, a metabolite of hemoglobin breakdown, was studied. The metabolic bases of mental illness were seen in possible vitamin and trace element deficiencies.

Thank God he was a benign and positively motivated clinician-scientist. He was thankfully removed from Ewen Cameron, M.D. in the evil uses of psychedelics for attempted mind control. When I phoned him in Alabama with information I had gotten from Acid Dreams, Osmond clammed up from his usual expressive self and would not talk about his government connections.

With hiss passing, the world of government drug research loses a significant body of information that never will see the light of day.

The New Jersey Bureau stands sadly vacant at the New Jersey Neuropsychiatric Institute some five miles north of Princeton. When I drive through the grounds on visits back east I travel back in time and reminisce about the enthusiasm and hope of defining psychobiological connections.

Tod H. Mikuriya, M.D.