Osteopathy and osteopathic medicine was established in 1882 by Dr Andrew Taylor Still. Dr Still was a medical practitioner and surgeon and he founded the American School of Osteopathy (now A. T. Still University), the world’s first osteopathic medical school, in Kirksville, Missouri.
After becoming disappointed with losing patients to various diseases like pneumonia and influenza, Dr Still formed a philosophy of preventative medicine that involved the understanding and treatment of the cause of disease, instead of just the symptoms.
He considered the shape and form of the skeleton and came to the understanding that the structure of something will determine its function within the body.
He realized that if you understand the mechanics of the body, right down to the smallest cellular functions, then working out the origin of disease is possible. Thus the principles of osteopathy were formed.