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July 2020

Chiropr Hist. 1995 Dec; 15(2): 43-50.

Kansas coconuts: legalizing chiropractic in the first state, 1910-1915.

Rehm WS.

When the Kansas Supreme Court averred that, under existing law, chiropractic was the practice of medicine, the matter was settled. The beleaguered chiropractic profession of that state had two choices: it could risk continued harassment by the medical establishment or seek legislation. In a small frontier town in western Kansas, a benchmark trial would clearly demonstrate the public's feeling about chiropractic's right to exist on its own merits, separate and distinct from medicine. That coveted goal seemed to have been achieved by passage of the Chiropractic Act of 1913, the world's first such law. However, a board of examiners could not be legally seated. It would be a combination of brilliant legal strategy on the part of the chiropractors and the medical board's own negligence that would end the dilemma, allowing licensure in Kansas by 1915.

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