Texas Surgeon: an Autobiography Page: 45
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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studiously trying to ignore. Even Alice, and she was a vain and
skimpy snip, gave me a long look of commiseration as I turned
to face the world, leaving her to nuptial ordeals as yet only
On the strength of my coachman experience I next found
work with the Arlington Express Company, with offices and a
small freight depot near the Faneuil Hall Market, in Boston's
commercial district. This old-fashioned express company, which
operated between Boston and Arlington, Cambridge, Medford,
Belmont, and other suburbs beyond the Charles, was managed by
a widow, Mrs. Johnson. She was a grimly vigorous person, born
to manage others. After her husband's death she had no diffi-
culty taking over his business and holding her own in the profane
and brawling teamster world. I can see her now, wetting a pencil
tip as she prepared to sign an invoice.
No doubt with the dual purpose of paying me minimum wages
and making sure I was at work on time, she offered to board me
at her home in the North End. With some misgivings Aunt
Lavinia assented. Poor thing, she had her own difficulties. I
would be living in a neighborhood reputed to be a red-light
district. On the other hand, my hours of work, from half-past
six in the morning to eight or ten at night, and my laborious
type of employ were such that I would have little strength left
for dalliance, even were I so inclined. Which, to be truthful, I
My task was to guide a two-horse dray filled with boxed and
packaged merchandise out of Boston's congested streets, over
the old West Boston Bridge across the Charles, and into satellite
towns. I broke in by working as a helper to a burly Swede. He
taught me how to walk a barrel of flour up a narrow flight of
stairs and how, without undue risk of inguinal hernia, to tote a
quarter of beef upon my back. He also showed me how to stow
fragile freight so that it would remain unbroken. I was a very
muscular young fellow and I actually came to like the work,
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/m1/57/: accessed January 17, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries.