First half of the volume is numbered pg I-CXXI, dated c1880, and contains illustrated handwritten essays and notes on anatomy. Essays are as follows:
- An essay on the art of injecting the vessels of animals. From the works of Alexander Munro, Anatomist at Edinburgh 1781 (pg I-XX)
- An essay on the method of preparing and preserving the parts of animals for anatomical uses, by Alexander Munro MD, Anatomist at Edinburgh 1781 (pg XXI-LV)
- On dissecting and preparing animals for collections, by Professor Carus of Dresden (pg LVI-LXIV)
Thereafter Murphy makes shorter notes from different sources (some referenced) which are numbered XLII to XCII. These notes are written over a period of some time as evidenced by an 1885 press cutting, different inks and slightly different handwriting (but of the same hand). The essays and notes are indexed.
The illustrations are of very high quality in hand-drawn ink over pencil. Includes 9 full page drawings, 4 half-page drawings and 4 illustrations in the text, mainly of anatomical instruments and dissecting rooms.
Page numbering restarts in second half of the volume, pg I-XXXI. This half of the volume consists of press cuttings and excerpts pasted in from journals (dated 1799-1900), all relating to both human and animal anatomy with a focus on embalming, casting and dissecting, and associated handwritten text.