Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 3, September, 1992 Page: 138
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
depriving us of our only scavengers, and leaving the offal from our kitchens to add its
noisome effluvia to the mass already on hand.
The result is not difficult to imagine. While our city government continued
from time to time, to adopt quarantine ordinances, the health of the town grew gradually
worse; the number of cases increased, and the attacks were more violent, frequently
terminating on the seventh or ninth day, but generally in convalescence.
The treatment which I found most effective was only slightly modified from
that adopted in the earlier cases, and consisted of a thorough purgative of either rhubarb
and bicarb. potass., or, if the patient was at all plethoric, a saline,
Mix one and one half ounces of magnesium sulphate and fifteen grains of Dover's
powder. Let it be labeled "Divide into three powders. One every four hours until
the bowels are thoroughly evacuated."
with three to five grains Dover's powder. The action of the cathartic to be followed by
the turpentine emulsion,
Mix two fluid drams of purgative turpentine oil, twenty minims of sassafras oil,
and enough of each in equal parts to make four ounces of mucilage of acacia and
simple syrup (sucrose and purified water). Let it be labeled "A teaspoonful every
four or six hours."
or turpentine emulsion and spirits nitre. If this prescription was not tolerated by the
patient, I substituted spirits nitre and tinct. of aconite; or if there was any tendency to
suppression of urine, the mixture of acet. and cit. potass. before mentioned. If nausea
and vomiting occurred, the magnesia mixture was generally ordered, because of the
invariable presence of acid in the stomach, sometimes with a mustard poultice on the
stomach and bowels, but more frequently with a wet compress, particularly if the
temperature of the body was high.
As soon as the fever began to decline, the patient was liberally nourished
with fresh milk and liquor calcis boiled together, if the nausea was troublesome, other-
wise beef tea was preferred; and after the complete abatement of the fever, beef tea and
sherry wine. Champagne was, if not detrimental, at least of no value as a therapeutic
agent, since it aggravated the tormina that frequently proved troublesome in the latter
stages of the disease, however it terminated. In cases of extreme prostration, beef tea
and brandy were of great utility, and were always well borne.
It was always of great importance to confine the patient, during the entire
period of convalescence, to a light and easily digested diet, and Borden's extract of beef
and pemican, of which the generosity of Mr. H. L. Borden gave us an ample supply,
afforded both an eligible and available material for this purpose, combining convenience
for immediate use with all the qualities of unirritating nourishment of beef tea prepared
by the tedious process of preparation in a water basin.
On the 7th day of October the waters began to subside; and on the 8th the
river was within its banks. The winds now prevailed for some weeks almost continually
from the east, sweeping over the broad strip of low land so recently flooded, where
thousands of carcases [carcasses] of dead fish, hogs, cattle and horses had been left
to decay in the drift and mud, with the mercury rarely indicating a temperature below
900 Fahrenheit. Every member of the profession in the place was busy, and my labors
were incessant. And although there were but few, if any, fatal cases, it was evident that
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 3, September, 1992, periodical, September 1992; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151386/m1/10/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed May 27, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.