Texas Surgeon: an Autobiography Page: 20
This book is part of the collection entitled: Rescuing Texas History, 2010 and was provided to The Portal to Texas History by the University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries .
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This, as it proved, was a piece of luck. In my pocket I had
two letters, one from my mother addressed to me at the Port
Elgin post office, not far from North Shore on Cape Tormen-
tine. In this letter she announced that next spring I was to come
and live with the family, now settled in Worcester, Massachu-
setts. To this letter I had written a reply, which I intended to
dispatch from the mines, saying that henceforth I intended to be
independent, if I could, and earn big money so I might go back
to school and become a doctor. These letters, and my talisman
forceps, which I was also carrying with me, cleared me to the
sheriff's satisfaction. Again I set out along the tracks, taking
with me some strong parting advice about being more choosy of
my company in the future.
Spring Hill, I found when I arrived there late that afternoon,
was far from an enchanting spot, a typical Canadian mining
town of the period. Some fifteen hundred miners and their
families lived in rows of ramshackle one-story cottages, covered
with unpainted clapboards grayed dark by the weather. Between
the rows wound muddy streets. Off I went without delay to the
mine company offices, made my case known to a clerk, and was
gruffly turned down. I came outdoors, my heart in my boots and
my bundle hanging from my hand.
It was an old Welsh miner who saved the day for me. Passing
by, he saw my stricken look and asked what the trouble was.
"Well, now," he said, in a slow Welsh way, his words going up
and down, "a strong boy like you perhaps I could use. Look
you, back, come now with me."
With him I went again into the employment office and this
time got to see the man who did the hiring, McGinnis by name.
McGinnis knew the miner who was befriending me, and ad-
dressed him as Aiken. The miner, cap in hand, told McGinnis
that he was in need of a "bottomer," and thought that I, "a good
strong boy, look you," could do the job. McGinnis nodded.
Promptly my name was entered on the company books.
Here’s what’s next.
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Atkinson, Donald Taylor. Texas Surgeon: an Autobiography, book, 1958; New York. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth143566/m1/32/: accessed August 18, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries.