Texas Surgeon: an Autobiography Page: 58
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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on his own. As a matter of fact, looking back it seems to me that
this tendency to withdraw was rather widespread throughout
the whole region, despite the splendors of Harvard and State
Street. In any case, decline at so early an age was in the air. My
patient's particular archaeological interest was old forts, from
which valorous and masculine subject he no doubt unconsciously
yearned to draw the vigor he lacked. His heroic choice of subject,
as it turned out, redounded to my benefit.
I called my patient "Mr. Sabin," and he addressed me as
"Mr. Atkinson." Our unorthodox relationship in no way affected
Boston protocol. Mr. Sabin scribbled away at his manuscripts in
the library of his home, while I sat by, one eye on my medical
books, another on him. Sometimes we took little trips to historic
sites, not only to Boston and Charlestown, but to Plymouth and
Cape Cod as well. I distinctly remember Mr. Sabin's intense fear
and dislike of his doctor. He knotted his hands together in
helpless annoyance whenever the man came to see him. They
affected each other like a cat and a dog.
Weeks had drifted by when suddenly an older brother, who
ran a grain business in Minneapolis and had been visiting the
Newton homestead, proposed that I take Mr. Sabin out to the
Dakotas, for reasons both therapeutic and historical. Forts there
in the Indian country still smelled of gunpowder. A change from
an immovably settled to a pioneer scene might tip the scales in
favor of a permanent cure. "If you are agreeable, Mr. Atkinson,"
he said, for he, too, mistered me, "if you are agreeable, we will
raise your salary 25 per cent."
Had he suggested a trip to the Antipodes, I would have seized
the chance. Money and more money I always needed. But even
if this had not been the case, the chance at last to break out of
the stiffly stratified New England environment would have
sealed my acceptance. By this time it had become abundantly
clear to me that only by a miracle would I ever be able to get a
medical education in the East, at Bellevue excepted. Too, the
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Atkinson, Donald Taylor. Texas Surgeon: an Autobiography, book, 1958; New York. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth143566/m1/70/: accessed April 22, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting University of Texas Health Science Center Libraries.