From Day to Day
Another day to work and
And plan a bright tomorrow
That will employ some means of joy
To lighten someone's sorrow;
To love and live, to get and give,
To work and serve in gladness;
This, with a smile, makes life worth while
And helps to banish sadness.
-J. W. Torbett.
Although this section of my book really begins its record on January 1, 1945, I want to tell about Thanksgiving Day, 1944, as a fitting introduction. My two grandchildren came to Marlin from Waco, Texas, and had dinner with us.
Little John Walter played his cornet, and Donnell was full of enthusiasm and plans for Christmas. The Joe Perkins party at the Methodist Home would take place as usual in December, and it was always a great occasion.
The children always got a half dollar each at that time, but this Christmas they would get a dollar each - fifty cents from Joe Bridwell and the same amount from Mr. Perkins. They also would get all sorts of candy and fruits.
Ralph DeShong, the matchless magician, would do a wonderful performance at the Joe Perkins party, catching fish out of the air with his hook and line, and doing other disappearing acts that were very remarkable. But children are quick to understand these tricks of magic -more so than older people.
When the great day arrived, the boys did have the opportunity of meeting seven of the great men of our country: First, Governor Coke Stevenson of Texas; then six bishops -Selecman, Smith, Martin, Moore, Boaz, and Holt. The children of the home also enjoyed meeting these distinguished visitors, and "a good time was had by all."
JANUARY 1, 1945
This first entry in my "Day to Day" record will refer to a peculiar type of disease to which I have given much study during the past nine years. Many patients who have come to me never really have been diagnosed because the medical profession generally is not conscious of the prevalence of Undulant Fever, or Brucellosis.
During these nine years I have found in my practice something like 800 cases. I have had each patient tested for the disease, and their clinical symptoms checked up. Then the herds where they have been getting their milk have been thoroughly investigated and have been found to be infected with "Bangs Disease." Brucellosis comes to the human being from cows which have Bangs Disease, and it has been contracted through the milk, cream, or butter that they use. More cases are contracted through cream than through the milk, and only about one in a hundred who use the milk is likely to take the disease.
This has been demonstrated in some of our institutions. I mention particularly the State Home in Waco. There were 400 children in the Home at the time of the test, with only four cases found at that time. All the children were using the milk, hence the trouble is not readily contracted. However, there is a widespread distribution of the chronic type that is indicated by the clinical symptoms, which show the patients to be extremely tired, though the blood may be normal. Dr. Carlisle gave this report as Home physician of the State Home in Waco.
There are aches and pains frequently in the shoulders or neck, and rheumatism all over the body. They get better and then worse; then better again - undulant in type - and often no temperature. Only 48 per cent of the chronic cases have a positive agglutination test. (By Alice Evans.)
I have been trying to work up an interest through the patients who have come here and found that they had the disease, so that when they went back home they could demand that such tests be made of the cows from which they get their milk. I asked that tests be made here in our own county and found that in one of the herds seventy-three out of 186 cows had Bangs Disease. I had one case from New York City last year, and she came back again this year. Another case came from Cleveland, 9hio, and many from Oklahoma, Louisiana, and all over Texas. One patient near Richmond, Texas, had twenty-one out of twenty-six cows with Bangs Disease. He wondered where he got it.
Think it over. Have your cows been tested?
A press report of a lecture recently given by me says: "Dr. J. W. Torbett, Sr., of Marlin, Texas, gave a lecture at College Station on Chronic Human Brucellosis, commonly known as undulant fever, to several hundred veterinarians and members of their State Association. . . . It was stressed that Undulant Fever is not conveyed from one person to another, but only by animal carriers through the digestive and respiratory tracts and the skin. Ten per cent of all animals are said to have this disease . . . and all dairy products should be pasteurized. Dr. Huddleston of Lansing, Michigan, confirmed this in his fine report on Bangs."
FEBRUARY 1, 1945
Today is the centennial celebration of old Baylor University at Waco, Texas, the great institution that has done so much for education in Texas and has trained so many prominent and aggressive men. Dr. J. C. Hardy of Baylor Belton, which college is celebrating along with Baylor at Waco, was a friend and patient for mine for many years. Once when I visited his school on the Fourth of July, he showed me over the whole institution, much as a little boy would show his first red-top boots. Then he thanked me for helping him build it. I said, "Why, Dr. Hardy, I never gave you any money for Belton. I gave a thousand dollars to Dr. Brooks for Baylor University in Waco, but I've never given anything to you."
"Oh, yes you have. I went over to Marlin to see you frequently, and you not only helped me physically, but you always inspired me with enthusiasm when I was discouraged. You always helped me to come back and take up my work again with renewed spirit. So you really did help me build Baylor Belton into one of the largest denominational female colleges in the United States. I shall never forget it."
I thought of those words when I awoke this morning at 6:25. It was really only 5:25, but this war time tries to fool one. However, I am feeling fine and fresh, and the first patient who came in was greeted genially. I inquired his name.
"My name's Jones, and I'm from Dallas, the best town in the State."
"Well, I'm glad to see you, sir. A great many fine, educated, well-dressed fellows come to us from Dallas, but we have a few of that description from Houston, Fort Worth and San Antonio, too. It's a hard matter to tell just exactly where a man is from by looking at him, but you people seem to think that the word 'Dallas' is written across your foreheads. And, of course, you do have reason to be proud of your city and the Southern Methodist University, of which I have the honor to be one of the founders. Aside from congratulating you on your hometown, what can I do to make you happy?"
"Dr. Torbett, I've been put through the clinic and examined, and they say I have arthritis. I came down here because I've heard my mother talk about you as a young doctor she came to see forty years ago. She always said, 'That young fellow took so much interest in me I never forgot it. He helped me a lot, besides giving me some of his own poems along with his prescriptions.' "
"Well," I encouraged him, "We'll have to find out what really is the matter with you. The skin tests will usually show the germ that may cause it."
"All right; let's go," he agreed.
He did have arthritis, as so many people have that come to us now. Most of them are taking Ertron, but it has helped only about fifty per cent of those cases that have deformed joints - and does not help the other kind.
However, the general treatments here, together with the water, are very beneficial to all sorts of cases.
FEBRUARY 11, 1945
The redbirds have been singing at daybreak for several mornings, a sure sign of an early Spring, and on the little bulletin where I place my daily mottoes, I have written this:
The redbirds sing of
And all the joys that it will bring;
With early peace, when war shall cease,
And worldwide joy for all increase.
On the 6th of this month I journeyed to Dallas to attend a meeting of the Executive Board of the Methodist Orphans Home in Waco. I presided at the Board meeting Tuesday, at which session the gift of $1,320,000 made to Southern Methodist University by Joe J. and Lois Perkins of Wichita Falls was announced. Mr. Perkins has been a patron of the University for two decades, but his latest gift is the largest ever made to the school, and one of the largest ever made to theological education in the South. The donor said, "Our church has a great need for new preachers. Maybe this will help."
Bishop A. Frank Smith, Houston, said that the Board of Trustees, meeting Tuesday, voted unanimously to change the name of Southern Methodist's thirty-year-old School of Theology to the "Perkins School of Theology." "It will be a blessing to hundreds of consecrated young men, and a joy to the generous givers as long as they both shall live," asserted Bishop Smith.
FEBRUARY 13, 1945
Yesterday was Lincoln Day, and Readers Digest carried a splendid article about the stepmother of Lincoln, Sarah Bush Johnson, telling of her wonderful influence on the life of her stepson. There were many broadcasts commemorative of the anniversary.
It was a busy day here in the office. We had eight new patients from various parts of the country, and four old ones back for a check-up. Mrs. Gerald Smith of New York, who came to Marlin last year with the usual symptoms of rheumatic pains in the shoulders, and tiredness every morning, had come back with her mother and father for another once-over and some more baths. As she said "good-bye" she added, "What shall I tell Dr. Richard Kovacs, who sent me here from New York City?"
"Give him my best regards, and tell him we are just as busy down here as those New Yorkers are. He's one of the brightest young doctors I know, and he has been a friend of mine for years. And thank you, Mrs. Smith, for the fifty dollars you gave us for the benefit of the hungry, homeless children in Europe who are being ministered to by Methodist missionaries over there. I want to give this little motto to you, Mrs. Smith, as a good-bye tribute:
You're a lady with a mission, in this world of
want and woe;
You make yourself a blessing to the friends you chance to know;
With your smiles and pleasant manners, and the kindly deeds you do,
You bring joy to many others - joy that comes right back to you.
For the thoughts you think, and the things you give,
Do make your life worth while to live.
FEBRUARY 23, 1945
When I awoke this morning, I found that there had been a cold, slow rain all right. But this motto was in my heart:
Each morning when I wake in bed
I have a motto in my head,
When I get up to write it down
To start a smile instead of a frown,
A smile to last throughout the day
To drive the gloom and blues away.
To my first patient I said, "Mr. Felts, I am going to explain to you what I found on this record that has been made for you from your laboratory examinations. I see that you are eighty years of age and live in Edna, Texas, where you have been an outstanding man. You run all your business and look after everything on the place -- a real worker; you never did anything by halves. But you have inherited from your parents a tendency to high blood pressure. I see that your capillary circulation is beginning to close down, and the blood vessels have begun to get hard. Old age, you know, starts right in the ends of the blood vessels-in the capillary system.
"Now, Mr. Felts, you have a very high blood pressure, and you've got to 'unlax,' as Andy says; you've got to quit bossing around. I notice your wife smiles at that. Why, man, you don't want to get mad and boss her at all. You've reached the age when you must keep quiet and serene. Spend your days like Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes said: 'Get an incurable disease and take care of yourself, and you'll live longer than any of your neighbors who do not do this.'
"I do not know of any medicine that does very much for high blood pressure, but warm baths are beneficial. They stimulate the capillary circulation, bring the blood to the surface and make it run through the brain more rapidly, and warm baths help to soften the blood vessels. You know, too, if you take a rubber tube or do not use the tubes or tires to your automobile, in a little while the rubber will go dead - will become brittle and crack. Likewise, if a man lies in bed all the time with high blood pressure and does not exercise himself, the blood vessels will get brittle from lack of use and he will be more likely to have a stroke than if he does a moderate amount of exercising. Stretching or massaging in bed, or in a warm bath, is helpful, but do not massage any varicose veins; that may turn a valve loose that will go to your heart and prove fatal. I have seen three such cases, but not one in our bath house in forty-eight years, because the attendants are taught never to massage varicose veins.
"I notice you have a young wife here. She is plenty able to look after you, and I understand she has done so for the past two years in a very excellent way. But you must let her have her way about things; let her look after things for you - at your direction, of course. In other words, you may sit up and make a noise like a boss, but in a very mild way, without exerting yourself. You must be kind to your blood vessels by leading a quiet life. Your blood pressure will get decidedly lower if you will avoid emotional strain and stress. In Boston there is a club called 'The High Blood Pressure Society,' and the members of that society do not allow themselves to be worried about anything at all. They have meetings frequently, laugh and talk, tell jokes, They do not overeat, but restrict their diet and keep themselves hungry, maintaining regular eliminations.
"Your liver is a little out of order, and that is due to the fact that you are eating too many eggs. Eggs are acid forming and overwork the liver if you eat too many. One a day is enough for a man who, like you, is not working. A small bit of meat at the noon meal, plenty of fruits and vegetables, and some pasteurized milk. Then read jokes, read novels that are not too exciting, avoid war news and learn to laugh. If you can't laugh at anyone else, look in the mirror and laugh at yourself.
"As I said, you never could do anything halfway, and that is the reason you have such a high blood pressure. You go at things in an excited sort of way. But you've got to learn to relax, to take warm baths, and to eat like Gandhi - you will live a good deal longer than you would otherwise. Your wife has a very good disposition. She laughs at all my jokes, notwithstanding she probably has heard them all before, and laughed just as much then.
"About two weeks of the warm baths, relaxation and gentle massage have been of great help to you, and when you go back home you should keep up the same line of treatment as given here."
Mr. Felts has learned how to live and is now in fine condition.
Speaking of laughs, I had to smile when an old friend of mine, Col. Epps Knight, said to me, "Doc, do you know how to tell the difference between an old woman and a young woman here in the dark ?" I said, "How is that, Colonel ?" He grinned, "Why all these old women around here have wintergreen on them, and the young ones have perfume." After I had told that story recently at a convention, a number of gray-haired clubwomen came to me and inquired, "How do you like my perfume, Doctor ?"
FEBRUARY 27, 1945
My motto for today will be:
MY MUSICAL SOUL
My musical soul has a
On which my Muse its poetry brings
As the breath of Heaven its sweet song sings,
To bring me joy each day.
It may be the simple or cheerful kind
To cheer my heart and soothe my mind,
Or the classic sort - I'm sure to find
It brightens up my way.
This was a busy day with us, trying to bring peace, comfort and happiness to sick people's souls as well as their bodies.
My wife and I had Rufus, our trusted and faithful driver, take us to Waco in the evening, to attend the Waco Symphony Concert, presenting the matchless grand opera singer, Grace Moore, and Max Reiter's orchestra.
Grace Moore is the acme of grace and charm, possessing a richness and sweetness of tone unsurpassed. Max Reiter has selected and trained an orchestra of all ages and sizes to a splendid degree of harmony and perfection. He ended six years of service that night with the Waco Symphony Orchestra. In his farewell he said with emotional appreciation:
"My friends, it has been six years this very hour since I arrived in Waco a penniless and friendless musician without a job. You trusted me and helped me to organize this orchestra that has given joy to so many, and loyal service and cooperation to me, for which I thank you all from the bottom of my heart."
Two seats in front of me sat Dr. Hallie Earle and Miss Lucille Pearre, who were on our staff at Marlin for many years. Miss Pearre is a sunshiny person, with a rare faculty for wit and originality. Dr. Earle is a brilliant woman with a splendid education, having M.S. and M.D. degrees from Baylor University. When she was with us she was always faithful and competent, but temperamental like myself. She has a fine aristocratic background dating from the Confederacy. In Waco she has made a success of her profession, treating her patients in her offices in the Amicable Building.
Immediately in front of me was Mrs. Wood with her nice little boy, who talked with me a short while. I have given professional care to members of that family for many years. Just to the left of Mrs. Wood was Mrs. Watts, formerly Miss Ora Quaid.
On my left was Mrs. Batson, young and sprightly and full of enthusiasm, a teacher who once lived in Marlin and whose husband died there. She now teaches in Waco. On my right sat Mrs. Clay McLellan, M.A., a clubwoman of high reputation, who teaches in Baylor and does much club work. She at one time lived in Gatesville, and seeing her again brought back a train of thoughts concerning the old days of my early practice at Leon Junction and the first patient who died while under my care. This unfortunate outcome of a hopeless case is related at length in the autobiographical section of this book.
Altogether, today has been one of interesting and varied adventure.
MARCH 16, 1945
The following case of James Cloer, seven years of age, is given here not to try to teach you to be a doctor yourself, but to tell you to handle such a case if you have one in your family. James has had diabetes for two years. He had been put on a diet of meat and eggs, cream and butter, with no bread at all, nor sugar. He had been given ten units of insulin twice a day; later on he was using twenty units of insulin.
About October 18 he began to get dull and stupid, and complained of some pain in his upper abdomen, over his stomach; also had considerable fever. He quit school on November 19 and was brought to this hospital on November 27, 1944, with a convulsion and very deep, harsh, loud breathing. There was a sweetish odor to his breath, and urine showed a decided amount of acetone and diacetic acid, as well as albumin. His blood sugar was 209, the normal being from 80 to 120. He was given 20 units of insulin every two hours for the acidosis.
A liver capsule of the regular combination of calomel, soda and bismuth was given. The bismuth seems to make it much better than calomel and soda alone. It stopped the patient's nausea, and the increased amount of insulin, 20 units every two hours, soon brought him out of his coma. He had been entirely unconscious.
On a diet of fruit juices, potatoes and buttermilk, with heat to chest, he soon came out of his fever, and his blood sugar the next day was 133. On December 27 he had become very nervous and had another convulsion. He was brought to the hospital in a comatose condition and his blood sugar was found to be only 50 - he had had an insulin shock.
Protomine zinc insulin is rather slow in its effect, and lasts longer than 24 hours. His mother had been taught in the meantime to make his urinalysis, and he he did not show any sugar, but she did not understand the importance of reducing the insulin when he exercised too much. She was a very intelligent woman, a farmer's wife.
The albumin had cleared up entirely and had had no more acetone of diacetic acid, but, as above stated, he had had an insulin shock. His mother was told to make his urinalysis every day, and give him plenty of green vegetables and potatoes, with only one egg a day, and meat once a day.
On March 7, 1945, he was brought in rather nervous, but had no fever or convulsions; his blood sugar was found to be 54. He had been exercising too much and his mother had not compared his urinalysis with his blood sugar, as she had not made one in quite a while.
Children like this have blood sugar of about 300 when the urine shows 4 plus sugar, in the urinalysis test. She was advised that when the boy exercised a great deal, as he had been doing recently, she should cut down the insulin or make a test of the urine before she gave it. These are simple rules and not intended to make the reader his own physician, but these cases of diabetes can live and get along well in school, and can be normal in life, if they will take insulin once a day and watch the urinalysis and diet.
Old persons, however, get a sclerotic condition - no sugar in the urine, but a very high blood sugar. I have one case in mind, a lady, who had a running ear, and fever, with an 800 blood sugar and no sugar in the urine at all; yet she had that sweetish odor to her breath, which showed an acidosis. She was given insulin, 30 units every two hours, until she came out of the shock, and her life was saved.
Mr. J. E. Rice of Hillsboro, Texas, came in February 17 with a history of having had treatment for duodenal ulcer for several months. He had the usual signs of hyperacidity, with pain and gnawing in his stomach. The test meal showed about three times as much acid as the patient should have had, with solids of only 10 per cent, showing a very high hypersecretion.
This patient had had a running left ear for several years, without relief. He was given milk every two hours, and the usual belladonna preparation, with hydrastis for the stomach four times a day, and castor oil at bedtime, one teaspoonful; also three X-ray treatments, one every other day, of 100 r, over the ear. He came back today and said his ear had not run at all since the last treatment, and that all the stomach symptoms have disappeared.
The value of one teaspoonful of castor oil for ulcerated conditions of the stomach or duodenum is decidedly of great value. We use it as a regular treatment with whatever other treatment may be needed in ulcer and gas fermentation, or soreness in the intestines.
By the way, when you come to me for an examination
Look me in the eye,
And don't tell me a lie;
Don't misinform your doctor nor your lawyer. For a correct diagnosis, all facts must be given correctly.
MARCH 17, 1945
In this section of my book a few of the many interesting cases treated every day are detailed to show the reader the different types and a general outline of treatment for helpinfi the individual regain health. Each patient has his own hereditary tendencies which must be taken into consideration, and his own little peculiarities of symptoms that may signify something of importance in the diagnosis and treatment of his particular case. Then, the personality of the physician himself is an important factor in giving the patient confidence, so that he will follow the advice given.
The basic, underlying principles of physical therapy: diet, optimism, hope, prayer and faith are necessary in all cases to get the best results.
And now, Good morning, Mr. Holt. This is St. Patrick's Day, a day when all sons of Erin are proud of their Irish ancestry. They have reason to be proud, too, for the Irish people have permeated the civilization of the entire world. They are pioneers, fighters, adventurers.
Many of the generals in the present war are Irish, and while there never has been an extensive country ruled exclusively by the Irish, they always help to fight the battles for freedom, and do their part in ruling the world. I, too, am proud of my Irish blood.
With this brief recognition of the good Saint who drove the snakes out of Ireland, we'll try to pave the way to rid- ding you of some of your troubles. Yours is an interesting and rather rare case, Mr. Holt. You came here to us on November 7, 1944, stating that you had been in very good health except for occasional nausea and gas. You said you had had ptomaine poisoning in Houston, where approximately 2,000 people in different parts of the city were poisoned by the same kind of food on February 7, 1944, and that since that time you had had almost constant trouble with your stomach, frequently complaining of gas until you could hardly get your breath.
Your family history shows that your mother, your father, and your aunt all had so-called sick headaches. Your test meal shows that you have a lot of mucus -- chronic gastritis. Your blood count shows nothing seriously wrong; neither does your urine. The X-ray has not shown any ulcers but other tests show positive brucellosis or undulant fever reactions. This disease has much to do with your nervousness. The brucellosis vaccine will help you very much, and will be given to you every week intradermally, as we always give it. You should be better very soon, and eventually be rid entirely of the distressing symptoms which have accompanied the "spells" you describe.
The following poem was written by me on St. Patrick's Eve, when through all the air came the smell of Spring, and Nature was donning her verdant "coming-out gown." It was suggested by a letter received from Hugh Nugent Fitzgerald just before his death enclosing a photo of himself and wife under a blooming pear tree:
(St. Patrick's Day)
The new-born leaves so
soft and green Are pushing out to kiss the breeze;
The snow-white flowers, sweet and clean,
Are smiling on the old pear trees;
The twittering birds, on swinging limbs,
Are bidding good-night to the setting sun;
The mockingbirds sing their evening hymns;
The stars' night vigil is just begun;
While the working throng, with souls full of song,
To their loved ones at home are hurrying along.
Mrs. Jones, have a seat on the mourner's bench, and I'll tell you your troubles, the cause and treatment.
"Well, Doctor, I want to tell you about this terrible pain in my head and back, I can't sleep and nothing does me any good." Lady, I said, I have that all in your typewritten history and I want to tell you the cause of your trouble. Please put this thermometer in your mouth. You breathe flu and strep germs through your nose all day and into your nose and sinuses, and at night while you sleep they are absorbed into your blood. Your nose is open all the time, and your mouth only half of the time. Her quiet, meek little husband over in the corner said, "Doc, you don't know my wife." I said, no, but I am learning her all right; she had taken the thermometer out of her mouth and started talking again. Mrs. Jones, you must wash out your nose and sinuses and throat night and morning, when you brush your teeth, with one teaspoonful of Epsom salts in six ounces of boiled water, using a medicine dropper or atomizer. Do it well several times to clean out the dust, germs and pollen to. prevent or cure colds, hay fever, sinus, etc., that cause neuritis and rheumatism.
Some headaches are due to escape neurosis, eye defects, infectipns in sinuses and the migraine hereditary type and others due to tumors or pituitary gland pressure. I have had several of the latter group, interesting but rare. Mrs. M. B. Poole of Daisetta, Texas, came to the clinic nearly twenty- five years ago. She was the pituitary make-up; large breasts and rolls of fat in lower abdomen and large all over but smart. The headaches were very severe in temples and had flashes of lightning-like pains. X-ray of the pituitary showed pressure on the gland. Petuitrin hypos eased the pain and X-ray treatments through the pituitary gland, relieved for one year; they returned, and X-ray induced menopause and relieved permanently. She lost 100 pounds in one year, having weighed 346 pounds on starting treatment.
Miss Sarah Kirven -- The little woman who puts 'em to sleep, but never fails to wake 'em up on time.
Miss Kirven was superintendent of the Allen Hospital and the Torbett Sanatorium and Nursing School for several years. When the training school disbanded we talked and planned the future for her, and decided she should become anesthetist.
She went to New Orleans where she had training and took the course, and has served efficiently for many years.
She fell and broke her hip. She took some bromides as a sedative, and they made her delirious. I was asked to see her, and stopped the bromide, and had her given ultra-violet light allover the body with plenty of milk, corn bread, and turnip greens, and she healed the bone quickly.
She was always on time, and later was in a big hurry to get to church -the Episcopal Church, and broke her other hip. The same treatment healed that one, and she walks faster now than any 65-year-old I ever saw. She can catch a jack rabbit if it is not too old or too big.
Miss Jo Ann Baker, China Springs, Texas - Jo Ann had the type of allergic rhinitis with constant colds, which come and go, and had a heart involvement, and had a cough that stayed with her persistently. She showed positive allergic skin tests to many things.
She was given the Respiratory Vaccine, and later on three X-ray treatments, and she cleared up entirely. I just phoned her yesterday, which was a year since she has had any colds, and any allergic symptoms from the nose condition. She used ice bags to toughen herself, as given in many cases. She washed out her nose night and morning with the Magnesium Sulphate Solution, and lived on the Basic High Vitamin Diet prescribed. She is going to graduate soon from the Academy in Waco on her birthday.
My oId friend George Ratliff of Midland came in this morning for a check-up. He was a pupil of mine at old Centennary in 1892. We have been friends all these years. He has been coming to Marlin ever since 1903, and has brought his family many times for health vacations and necessary attention.
George is still in very good condition, though he is sev- enty-three years of age. He has a ranch of 30,000 acres on the other side of Midland, and has from 800 to 1000 Hereford cattle on it at all times. Mr. Ratliff is an example of what grit and determination, with the right ideals in life and the blessing of freedom that we have in this country, can do for a man. He recently gave T. C. U. $100,000.00.
APRIL 1, 1945
Today is 'Easter Sunday, and Christian peoples all over the world are celebrating with the largest congregations in years. Our church was full. The pastor, Rev. Moore, gave a beautiful and impressive sermon, and I wrote on my program this verse:
Glad Easter morn, new faith is born
Through Christ, to save the world forlorn.
In a wonderful editorial, the Dallas News says: "This celebration marks the attainment of the highest note in the Christian faith - the belief in rebirth - in life after death. Without such belief, there could be no solace for the grief that war has brought to American homes-no light to comfort or strengthen the bereaved. . . . Nature everywhere attests the soundness of the Christian faith. The old, old miracle of rebirth has been wrought in grass and trees. Earth has awakened from sleep, a witness of resurrection, to confirm the believer and challenge the skeptic. . . ." (Hilton Ross Greer). It was a beautiful editorial.
Our two grandchildren, John Walter III and Donnell Torbett, came to Marlin for the weekend to spend Easter with us. They were full of enthusiasm, happiness and the spirit of play; went fishing and had a lot of fun. They went to Sunday School with us, and remained for the church service and told a lot at dinner.
How could we know what lay ahead?
APRIL 5, 1945
On April 4, about two o'clock in the afternoon, a tragic phone call came from Waco-from Doctor and Mrs. W. L. Crossthwaite. The shocking news revealed that my little grandson Donnell had fallen dead on the playground at school. He had just finished his lunch and had gone out to play with the other children when he was stricken. He was doing "the tug of war."
Dr. Crossthwaite and Doctor Warren were called, but arrived too late; he had passed away. I went to Waco, to offer consolation to those in the home, and to share their grief. Many friends came to offer words of sympathy, among them the nationally known Baptist minister, Doctor J. M. Dawson, and his wife were there with words of prayer and consolation.
The little boy's funeral took place at six o'clock, with a wealth of floral offerings and a large attendance of friends who had known and loved him. The following farewell to our precious child came into my heart:
Good-bye, our dear sweet Donnell -
We will miss you much through life;
But you will miss the heartaches,
And the pain and human strife.
And now you are Our Angel Boy
To lead us to that Heavenly Joy.
My two sisters-in-law, Mrs. Oscar Torbett and Mrs. Bert Torbett, and my niece, Mrs. Virginia Walters, went with us. They are always ready at any time to assist in sorrow or trouble, and are a great comfort to us.
Donnell's father, Doctor John Walter Torbett, Jr., and his wife, came from Beaumont. His heart was pierced with sorrow in the tragic death of his small son, but he is gaining that mastery of his emotions that should come to all of us when we realize how futile it is to give way to our personal feelings, and how important it is to carryon with some work that is useful and helpful to others.
My sister Mrs. Cook, Mrs. Virginia Walters, Mr. and Mrs. Nathan Levy, Mrs. Oscar Torbett, Mrs. Evalyn Hutch- ins and Selwyn, Mrs. Frank and Lily Levi, and Mrs. A. O. Bowden, put books in the library at Marlin as memorial offerings, and Walter Allen, with his wife and mother, Mrs. Nettie Allen, also placed memorials for Donnell in the Home.
Mrs. Mattie Hunnicutt, widow of Judge W. E. Hunnicutt, and her son Emmett and his wife, came in to see us. Mrs. Hunnicutt announced that she was a great-grandmother. She is past seventy years of age, but shows no evidence of growing old. Mrs. Alice Maffett and Mrs. Mary Gunnell, daughters of Rev. Goodwyn, a very popular Methodist minister, were with us. The remark made about Mrs. Hunnicutt's being such a youthful great-grandmother. Alice said it reminded her of what her cook, Mandy, said one day.
"Mandy," asked her mistress, "how is it that you look so young when you're seventy-three? You don't look a day more than forty-five." Mandy replied, "It's jest like this, Miss Alice - when I works I works; and when I sets I sets loose; and when I sets down to worry I jest natchilly goes to sleep."
APRIL 6, 1945
In our visit with Mrs. Hunnicutt she spoke of her brother Hawthorn, who lost his life with pneumonia in the previous war. He had been treated with ice, which I found very unpleasant and injurious in the epidemic of 1918. I treated her sister Alberta with heat, thermo light, camphorated oil, and oil of mustard, every four to six hours on the chest, and with postural drainage. She soon recovered. Her father, Mr. W. D. Kyser, who lived to be eighty-two and still looked young, was taken one evening with strangulated hernia while playing golf. They sent for me, and I insisted that he have an operation at once, because the hernia could not be reduced.
There is one important truth that should be remembered by all who read this. A strangulated hernia that is allowed to last more than four hours is almost certain to become gangrenous and cause death.
I pleaded with the patient, and finally at the end of three and a half hours after the strangulated hernia occurred he went to the operating room. Everything was ready, the operation was done at once, and his life was saved, though the tissues were very black. Hot applications restored them to normal after a time.
Dr. J. M. Dawson, Baptist minister of Waco, informed me that he was one of ninety-six chosen for the Peace Conferenc to be held in San Francisco April 25. It is hoped that such characters as he can have a greater influence than has been wielded heretofore in the solving of the international peace problem.
All the Bingham family, of course, had been exposed to brucellosis due to milk from cows with Bangs disease, and had been treated several months by their family physician. They had been given the vaccine, and the children, little Roxene and Allan, the boy, had been much benefited; there was no unpleasant reaction on them.
The vaccine on Mr. and Mrs. Bingham gave them a chill and fever, and of course did not help them. The agglutination test was 320 in each. The little girl, Roxene, showed 180 and Allan 180, but Frankie was negative. Both the skin test and the blood agglutination test on the others were positive. Mrs. Bingham has been here several days taking the baths, and so has Roxene, a beautiful little girl of five years. They are both much improved now, not nervous, and Roxene plays around, very happy and full of mischief. This and other experiences show that large doses of vaccine that result in a strong systemic reaction do not build up immunity. As a matter of fact, they reduce the immunity.
I recently had a letter from Dr. Russell L. Cecil of New York City stating he had treated only one case of brucellosis in that great city where pasteurized milk is universally used. That case was his own nurse and she reacted with a chill and fever and would not let him treat her any more. A small dose of vaccine should be started, as in treating a horse, to build up immunity, and should be increased gradually. There must not be a very strong reaction, and the patient should feel better. If he gets sleepy, tired or achey after the vaccine, the dose is too large.
Mrs. Fontaine came in with twelve other patients during the last month, who have been taking 100r X-ray treatments for the chronic influenza cough that followed the flu during the winter months. With some of the patients it had become very deep-seated. Mrs. Fontaine has gotten rid of rheumatism and of the cough, and feels very much better.
I shall not continue to dwell on the prevalence of the disease called brucellosis, although we find two or three cases almost every day, which shows its ravages throughout the country. Mrs. Young came in from Denver, Colorado, this being her fourth visit to Marlin. She was very nervous and tired, with aching between the shoulders, symptoms that often indicate brucellosis, and this was found to be her trouble, as shown by blood and skin tests. Mrs. Shook was here from Cleveland, Ohio, and told of how all her cows were afflicted with Bangs disease and none of the calves would live. Of course she had the disease herself.
At the risk of repeating myself, I impress upon all comers that brucellosis should be put under the same law as tuberculosis in cattle. All cows should be tested, and no milk should be drunk except pasteurized. This propaganda is getting results. People are going back home and taking action. Many report finding that their cows have Bangs disease. One of my early cases, eight years ago, found that twelve out of a herd of fourteen had the disease. In other herds all of them" had it. In that case the calves were all vaccinated and the cows were killed. It is a menace to health that must be reckoned with.
Uncle Charlie Hoelscher from near Robstown, who had undulant fever about three years ago, came in again today for the baths, but is free of brucellosis, as shown by a thorough test. He said that if anyone ever had it he can tell by his feelings when he gets well.
APRIL 12, 1945
Late this afternoon the
whole world was stunned into silence and sorrow by the news flash of the sudden
death of our President, Franklin Delano Roosevelt. No man, perhaps, is so well
known over the entire world and so greatly loved for his friendship and loyalty
to the poor and underprivileged. No death has so shocked the world since that
night when news was flashed of the tragic death of Will Rogers. The entire
radio programs were turned over to the tidings of the President's passing and
to tributes of praise in his honor.
The Marlin Democrat bore this eloquent editorial:
"The President is dead! The voice that said 'My Friends' on the Fireside Chats of the early 1930's, and promised a 'New Deal' in the social, industrial and economic life of a jittery nation, will be heard no more.
"The President who urged preparedness while this nation seemed far away from war or attack; the President who stimulated aid to peace-loving nations already thrust into a spreading World War while this nation made further strides toward preparedness; the President who planned, and who met with heads of other countries to plan, in time of war, for a world peace, is dead. The President whose physical handicaps were not a barrier to any of his ambitions; whose bloom of vigor sallowed into death in a few short years, has paid the penalty of leadership.
"While striving for a world at peace, just as he saw the glow of victory on the horizon, he lost his own battle of life. The President is dead! Pray God, receive his soul!"
MAY 8, 1945
This V. E. Day we work and pray
That Peace for all now comes to stay.
Twenty-seven years ago, in the Presbyterian church at Marlin, at a school and civilian rally marking the close of the First World War, I paraphrased Edwin Markham's poem:
"Love, not hate, must come to birth,
To bring the brotherhood of man;
Christ, not Cain, must rule the earth,
To carry out God's perfect plan."
I told the audience that I was a Methodist; that they were known to do a little shouting sometimes, and that we certainly had something to shout about that day. I shouted, "Thank God for Peace! Glory Hallelujah!" They all joined me and we broke up the meeting singing, "Glory, Glory Hallelujah."
The V. E. Day also will go down in history as a momentous occasion for all humanity, when Germany, after five years and eight months of ruthless, destructive war, signed an unconditional surrender, and 25,000,000 soldiers lay down their arms. Many will soon take them up again, however, in the conquest of Japan. Perhaps 40,000,000 casualties have been inflicted on suffering humanity since the European conflict started. The surrender took place at 2:41 A.M., French time, or 7:41 A.M. Central War Time, at the headquarters of General Eisenhower in a red brick schoolhouse at Rheims, in northern France. This war was begun by Germany with a ruthless attack on Poland, followed by successive aggressions and beastly brutalities unparalleled in the world's history.
Impressive religious services were held in Marlin, as in most towns and cities in the United States and allied countries.
MAY 13, 1945
Again it is Mother's Day, when our thoughts turn to childhood days and Mother, and when a flower is worn in her honor, each telling its own story, according to the color.
All joy to you, this Mother's Day,
Who still can wear the flower so red;
There is a chance for you to say
The loving words that should be said,
To cheer your mother's longing heart
Before the day she shall depart.
To us who wear the flower of white,
May we recount our Mother's love,
And consecrate our lives aright,
To meet her in the realms above.
May we observe the truths she taught
By doing only what we ought.
Over the radio every day or night we hear of many new things that this war has helped to develop or has forced men to invent that can be utilized for the health and happiness of mankind during the coming days of reconstruction and peace. God made in all nature those underlying basic principles for man to employ, if he can but use them rightly, and by putting his mind into his work, he has brought to light many useful discoveries.
There are great opportunities for service in making a new order of things for the brighter future which awaits the united efforts of mankind, if We but work together in a spirit of cooperation. Each one of us has a creative spark within him that is the motivating force for accomplishing something worth while - not necessarily for selfish gain, but for the common good.
Henry Ford and Thomas Edison never started out to make a million dollars; they began by making something useful, that would make life easier and happier for people. Then the money they had spent in promoting their altruistic plans came back to them many times over.
I recall the following, written by Dorothy Thompson for her syndicated feature, "On the Record," during her recent visit to the Holy Land. After dwelling on the havoc and bloodshed of war she pointed out that such sacrifice should certainly be compensated in large degree by a united and peaceful world, and ended with:
"Outside, in the tranquil coolness which ends each day of heat in this city of ancient prophecy, stars hung like lamps in the ever-transparent air, and the words of Isaiah, uttered 2,500 years ago, seemed whispered in the wind - 'wonderful counselor, everlasting father, prince of peace.' "
Beautiful imagery - and the 'Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace,' still watches over His children. Grant that He will bring us all together. Another war would absolutely destroy civilization. It must not be permitted to happen! Never again!
MAY 14, 1945
"And here are our Dallas twins, Mrs. Wingate and Mrs. Hunt. So you are thinking of going home. Well, that's fine, but you must keep up your vaccine. One of you shows brucellosis by the skin test; the other shows it by the agglutination test; and both of you show it by the clinical symptoms. You already are much better, but you should keep up the vaccine treatments at home at least once a week, and all other dietetic and hygienic measures we have advised. And keep that cheerful smile, each of you. It's a great help to yourselves and to those with whom you come in contact.
"Mrs. Wingate, you say this is a picture of your daughter? Twenty years old? Why, you don't look more than twenty-five yourself. Wonderful, in these days of personal care and beauty parlors, how women can keep themselves young. I read a warning in the paper the other day. It said, 'Don't whistle at young girls coming from their work in stores and factories. It may be your own grandmother.'"
"Now here comes Mr. Harry Eyans of Lincoln, Nebraska. Well, well, Mr. Evans, so you haven't gone to heaven yet. When you came in here about three weeks ago and showed me your report from the Veterans Hospital in Lincoln, you said I would wonder why you were here at all after I read that summing up of symptoms. The report showed you had general arterio-sclerosis, high blood pressure, a coronary trouble with frequent attacks of angina-pectoris, chronic arthritis, and chronic emphysema of the lungs, with a persistent cough.
"After reading that report I said, 'No, I don't see why you are here at all. Your home is in heaven. Why don't you on there and let your wife have a rest?' You said you were better acqauinted here -- that you didn't know how to fly, and you were afraid you might fall and break a leg; that you were ready to go any time, however, because you had lived seventy-three years and that was a 'right smart spell' to stay in one place. You laughed as you talked and I told you that your sense of humor was one thing that has kept you alive.
"We have examined your wife, Mr. Evans, and prescribed for her. You yourself will just have to keep up the same remedies you are taking, take care of yourself, and be optimistic and hopeful. There may be many days ahead of you yet."
We have from forty to forty-five patients a day who come to talk to me and to my two faithful nurses. There are very few of them who cannot be helped mentally, morally and spiritually - if not physically. Even in incurable cases they become imbued with courage and optimism to go on and finally meet their fate with a smile.
Once we had a lady by the name of Mrs. Lane, about eighty years of age, from San Antonio. She had many friends and was very aristocratic, with her heliotrope dresses and accessories -- even her writing paper was that shade. She had rheumatism, and came often for treatments and baths. One morning I said to her, "Well, Mrs. Lane, I hope you haven't a single pain."
"No," she retorted, "I haven't a single pain. They're all married and have families-large families!"
MAY 16, 1945
My motto for today is:
A glad good-morning from a friend
That starts your dawning day,
Is like a kiss from skies that bend
Down low to light your way;
That starts within your heart a song,
A smile for those you meet,
That echoes on the whole day long
In everyone you greet.
I don't like the chameleon type of friendship, that changes with every change of the weather; but I am much like the chameleon in one respect - I change my moods to meet the needs of the person with whom I am associated or whom I am treating. Some of my patients are gay and happy because they feel they are getting well; others are very serious and apprehensive, imagining the worst. The latter, of course, need a joke now and then, or a jolly little rhyme to make them smile.
"A merry heart doeth good like a medicine, but a broken spirit drieth the bones." - Proverbs 17:22.
And here comes my first patient. "Good morning, Mrs. Miles, with all your smiles of the latest styles; it is always a joy to meet you. You have been here several times, and you are the only lady I know who is a successful road builder-a contractor who builds those great highways for us to travel over in speeding cars with comfort, peace and ease and with careful drivers.
"As to your daughter, Mrs. Calhoun, I feel that the treatment she is getting will help her very much, and I am sure the X-ray treatments will banish that cough.
"What's that, Mrs. Miles? You say I can't make a rhyme on the name of Calhoun? Why, that's easy:
I'm sure that you will be better soon,
My lovely and charming Mrs. Calhoun,
And just as happy as a bride in June.
Mrs. Calhoun stayed several days longer, and when she was ready to leave, her cough was much better as a result of having taken some baths and three X-ray treatments through the chest.
Dorothy Thompson, that matchless writer, quoted in her column today the words of Martin Neimoeller, who said, "The victorious nations should rule over the land of the conquered with a strong spiritual program." Neimoeller was a prisoner for several years because he would not bow down to Hitler, and because he stood staunchly for his religious convictions. He has come out of all this persecution and trouble like Job, with a refinement of spirit, an incandescent faith, and an unassailable inner freedom. Only two of his seven children remain alive, and they are with him and their mother now. He says the German nation is not only financially, but spiritually, bankrupt.
MAY 20, 1945
Judging from the looks of my waiting room, this is going to be a busy day. "Mrs. Thompson, come right in.
I'm glad to see that lovely smile -
It may not be the latest style,
But it helps your liver work off its bile,
And keeps your spirit free from guile.
"So keep it up. Persons of a nervous temperament like you will have their ups and downs; it's part of their lives. These little nervous spells you have with your stomach are entirely of nervous origin. You are very much better than you were when you came here, and you say you have gained nine pounds. The X-ray shows no organic disease whatsoever of the stomach or duodenum -- or of the colon.
"You have sudden spasms that are due to the menopause. This 'change of life' has been brought on you by use of the X-ray because you were menstruating so freely you could not get around. The X-ray treatment will get you over the menopause much more rapidly than you would otherwise. It probably would last a year or two longer if you did not do something like this to stop it at once. You say there has been a cessation already and now you are beginning to react and get better. You will probably have two or three months of nervousness, hot flashes, and other weaknesses, but you must use all the psychology you can; just know that it will not be long until you will feel better than you have for years. You must watch your diet, however, and avoid foods that do not agree with you. Keep a diary, if necessary, and record your reactions to doubtful foods. Nervousness is often due to indigestion. The diet diary is the most dependable way of finding what foods are allergic."
"Good morning, Mrs. Karnes; how's Dallas coming on? And here's your daughter, Mrs. Wadsworth, to stay with you and help you along. I'm glad you are both optimistic and cheerful; you don't need any lectures on psychology; you have enough common sense to take care of yourselves and think right. 'As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.' That is a part of your life.
"Now the bronchitis, you tell me, is doing pretty well?"
"Yes, it's much better than it was. I have taken three X-ray treatments and I am coughing up and getting rid of that infection that was in my lungs. I don't have to wake up at night and cough, like I did."
"You are taking the vitamins B hypodermically, simply as a stimulant and a tonic to your appetite and nevrous system. We are very proud that you are doing so much better."
"Top o' the mornin,' Mr. and Mrs. Carter! I believe you are from Port Arthur, the city where they use so many pecan trees for shade trees. I see you're rolling up your sleeves, Mr. Carter. I don't feel a bit like fighting this morning; do you?"
"No, Doctor; I just want to have my blood pressure taken."
"That's fine. I'll take it, and you won't even miss it. Pull down your sleeve; I always take it through one sleeve."
"All right, Mr. Crow, from Marietta, Oklahoma. You have been here some time, taking baths and treatments, and you say you are feeling much better. You have learned to take care of yourself, to eat right, to rest properly, to be optimistic, to exercise regularly, to rest and play and help your fellowman. That is a splendid outline for daily living. Many people overeat, which is very harmful, and on the other hand, many eat a one-sided diet. You have been given a diet list that will give you complete advice. You should read it carefully and follow it. Any time we can serve you further, it will be a joy to do so."
"Well, Mrs. A. W. Steele, you say the pains you had are all gone and you are feeling quite happy. The new treatment you are taking for dizziness has helped some cases very quickly, and others have not responded so well. There may be complications that cause this dizziness, the pounding in your ears, and the 'crickets' you have heard so much. I had this trouble myself several years ago, in my left ear. I could hear 'crickets' singing all the time - and katy-dids. I vibrated my ears, with my hands cupped, making a suction over each ear, twelve times, twice a day. I have gotten entirely over it. The dizziness was caused by the food I ate, especially eggs. Two eggs a day for three days knocks me completely out. I can digest one a day, but not two."
Whether you're grouchy or whether you're sweet
Depends very largely on things that you eat.
And whether your future is gloomy or bright
Depends upon whether you keep your thoughts right.
Again: "As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he."
MAY 28, 1945
In this book I am giving my experiences with my own patients, and the not untried experiences of others about whom I have heard or read, all duly authenticated.
Nearly thirty years ago, a serious disease known as general paresis, caused by syphilis, was cured by malarial fever. Later, artificial fever produced by vaccine injected through the veins into the blood was found to cure gonorrhea and gonorrheal rheumatism very quickly.
Now the sulfa preparations, and penicillin, have been known to cure gonorrhea in a few hours. Malaria lingers in the system, being held up in the spleen. If the patient goes to a higher altitude the circulation is stimulated, the malaria will come into the blood stream from the spleen, and a chill and fever may follow..
After warm baths given here in our Institution, some cases of silent malaria, where the plasmodia have been hidden in the spleen, may develop recurrent symptoms. The same is true of many other infections.
I have maintained for years that chronic cases with lingering infections in the liver and spleen may suddenly, after baths and treatment, develop a chill and fever which burns out the infection and gets rid of all chronic infections that may have been troubling them for months or years. The cold or flu that is accompanied by only a little fever is the one that, as a rule, is followed by chronic neuritis or rheumatism.
At five P. M., with Mrs. Mainer and Mrs. Rombo, I slipped away from my office and went to the Centennial exercises of Baylor University, twenty-seven miles north, in Waco, Texas.
President and Mrs. Neff were stationed at the head of the receiving line of more than a hundred persons. We went down the line joyously greeting all, many of whom were old friends and former patients. Conspicuously stationed was our friend from Southern Methodist University, David Russell, present poet laureate of Texas. He had read his prize poem during the Baylor Commencement exercises the day before, May 27.
President Neff and his wife were in excellent spirits, cordially greeting most of the guests by their first names. Many were faithful teachers who have served that great institution for years, developing the minds and characters of many fine citizens.
At the end of the line we met Mrs. Cole, the charming wife of the Methodist preacher who is now superintendent of the Cisco district. She graduated as Miss Hill several years ago. She showed us the monument and the crypt where the message of President Neff to his successor will be placed and kept. I was glad also to talk with Dr. J. M. Dawson of Waco, who recently returned from the San Francisco Conference. He has high hopes for the Charter and its effect on World Peace.
This spring Dr. Dawson told the graduating class of Waco High School that we are the most criminal nation in the world, with the bulk of the offenders under twenty years of age. We must give our boys and girls religious as well as secular training, or America will become a paganized land, is did Germany.
MAY 29, 1945
"Well, Mr. Click, I'm glad you are able to go back home to Dallas with your dear little wife who has come after you. You have had a severe siege of sciatica, and this is a raw day for a long drive, so you must take care of yourself. You have been here eighteen days and I'm certainly glad to see you getting around so well, and that you are practically free of pain. In order that you may avoid a recurrence of your trouble, I am going to tell you a few things about sciatica.
"In almost all cases - and we have about a hundred here at Marlin each year - sciatica is due to bending over, stooping or lifting something that may cause a rupture or dislocation of an oil cushion between the vertebrae. This allows the vertebrae to come too closely together, and presses on the nerve. Another cause is the ligimentum flavum, a yellow ligament or tissue that joins the vertebrae together, and which may slip and press against the nerve. An operation frequently has to be done in order to remove the ligament from the nerve and thus relieve the pressure that is causing such excruciating pains. About eight or ten per cent of our patients require an operation.
"Let me hear from you in about a month-and, as I said, be careful not to sit too long on a hard seat, or stoop to lift something heavy. Your blood count and urine analysis did not show anything seriously wrong, but that nerve is tender and must be protected."
And here is Mrs. M. Walters of Dallas, back for about the twentieth time. When you came here at sixty-nine years of age -- eighteen years ago-you barely could creep along, you had intense pain, and almost all your joints were involved. As is necessary in all cases of chronic arthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, you have kept up your treatments both here and at home. You have returned for the physical therapy and baths every year, and occasionally twice a year, and have followed our advice faithfully in your home treatments. Now you are eighty-seven and getting around much better than you did at seventy; in fact, you're quite 'chipper.'
There is a growing interest in preventive medicines. For instance, there is a new remedy called triethylene-glycol, which if generally used, under the supervision of the family physician, would prevent many from having rheumatic conditions. It is also recommended as a preventive of respiratory infections, but is not yet on the market.
In experimenting with this new remedy, triethylene-glycol, which was used to some extent in the army, it is reported that fifteen mice were put into a room 8x10x10, and two drops of the new preventive was placed on a hot- plate and vaporized. All of the fifteen mice had been infected with influenza virus, but not one of them took it; while a similar group of rodents that were not vaporized died from the influenza. This very remarkable experiment indicates that finally we shall have some respiratory inhalant which will help to keep off common respiratory infections.
The regular respiratory vaccine and the flu virus given in September of each year here at Marlin, with the daily wash or spray of epsom salts solution night and morning and inhalation of eucalyptol several times a day, are our best preventives now.
JUNE 14, 1945
The verse for today has been contributed by Mrs. W. O. Hood:
"Not till each loom is silent,
And the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God unroll the pattern
And explain the reason why
The dark threads were as needed
In the Weaver's skillful hand
As the threads of gold and silver
For the pattern which He planned."
Logically continuing my last entry, I will give a brief account of three cases of rheumatoid arthritis, showing that some cases can be greatly helped, especially those who have a positive skin reaction, when given vaccine correctly. There are some, however, who do not react to any skin test whatever. As a last resort, these cases are helped only by a change of climate, at not too high an elevation. I sometimes recommend Arizona, where there is not too much irrigation.
There are three methods of treatment or medicines that help. This first is ertron, which helps fifty to sixty per cent of cases that have deformed joints. However, it disagrees with some and cannot be digested. Second is a vaccine, when they have shown sensitivity to that particular vaccine. Third is the gold treatment, with the alternate use of Oxoate B, sunshine, fresh air, and exercise. High vitamin diets are given in all cases.
The three patients I mentioned as having such splendid results are: Mrs. Ewell, a little red-headed woman with an enlarged heart and a systolic heart murmur, who came from Houston on a stretcher three years ago. She has improved a great deal, but has to be careful of her diet and have treatment every now and then. She cannot take baths, but uses hot fomentations several hours each day.
The second case is that of Mr. J. E. Wallace of Henderson, Texas, who came here in 1934 on a stretcher, unable to feed or turn himself. Mr. Wallace comes regularly each year to take treatment and get a change from home atmosphere. He has improved so that he can walk anywhere now. He has, taken the gold treatment intra-muscularly, and has taken ertron occasionally, along ,with the baths, deep breathing and other exercises.
The third case is that of Mrs. Ellzey, from Ponchatoula, Louisiana, who came here in 1936 on a stretcher, unable to do anything at all for herself. She is very thin, but full of life and hope. Mrs. Ellzey gets great joy out of looking after her strawberries, and always sends the writer some to express her gratitude for benefits received.
These cases of coronary disease all have patterns of their own. Some get it and die suddenly; others last for years. I had three cases, all past 65 years of age, who came about the same time, twelve years ago. I gave all of them X-ray treatments, repeated about every six months. This kept them comfortable for seven years, and they all died close together. One was Dr. F. B. King of Houston; the other two lived in Marlin - Mr. Stanley and Mrs. Courregous.
"Why, hello Mrs. Tom Brady of Carrizo Springs! I'm glad to see you, but sorry that sickness brings you here again. You've been coming to Marlin for a good many years, haven't you? The first time you came you were a nervous wreck."
Her little boy interrupted: "Doctor, please give Mama something so she won't spank me so hard."
I told her that spanking the child not only hurts him but strains her heart as well, and she agreed to be more patient. The youngster is a smart little fellow, very obedient and alert. I told the mother and her son about my "modern mustard plaster."
When I first came to Marlin, I was a young doctor, and the ladies in those days frequently had hysterical attacks; they would throw themselves down and stiffen out and apparently have convulsions. In that way they could attract a great deal of attention to themselves. A guest at the Artesia, a boarding house, pulled off one of those stunts one day, and in great alarm her friends sent for me. Everybody was greatly excited. I saw the situation at once, and without any preliminaries I gave her three hard spanks - just like I would spank a kid -the kind Billy's mother, Mrs. Brady, had been giving him. The woman immediately came out of the spasm, jumped up as mad as heck, all the people laughed and I begged her pardon, telling her that was my "modern mustard plaster," the quickest way to bring about a reaction. It appeared that a quarrel with her sweetheart had brought on the attack.
I assured Mrs. Brady that she had no serious heart trouble and recommended a psychological readjustment and proper diet. "Most people with hearts like yours," I said, "live to be at least 85."
JUNE 16, 1945
Speaking of the need for sanitary conditions in dairies, and for efficient pasteurization of all milk for human consumption, reminds me of my association with Dr. W. F. Barnett, superintendent of the Orphans Home at Waco, a devoted, self-sacrificing and able administrator. Soon after Brother Barnett took charge of the Home, which has always been one of my major philanthropic interests, he mentioned to me the fact that the institution badly needed a dairy, so as to make sure of the supply and sanitation of the great amount of milk needed.
I agreed that milk was one of the most important foods needed, and agreed to give a $7,000 dairy to the Orphans Home, a donation that was paid by me in $1,000 installments. It was a dream dairy - but at the same time very practical. Each cow had an "individual drinking cup," her own quarters, and we had an "old dog Tray" with almost human intelligence, who knew where each cow belonged and kept them well policed. After I had furnished the barn and equipment, some of my friends contributed enough cows to get the thing started. I think about ten were furnished. Dr. Knickerbocker, then Methodist pastor at Marlin; my mother, my brother Oscar, Dr. Dudgeon of Waco, Dr. Lanham of Waco, and others, each gave a cow. The enterprise was a great success, as were other features of Dr. Barnett's term of office. He took the children over the State and put on programs, also broadcast by radio, and there was greater interest in the Home than ever before.
I warned Brother Barnett that he must slow down or pay the price - that he might have a stroke owing to high blood pressure, but he said he'd rather wear out than rust out, and so he did, in 1935. On this beautiful June day my mind goes back just one decade in appreciation. The boys and girls whose characters he helped to form are the young men and women of whom the Home is so justly proud today - citizens who are doing their share to make this a better and brighter world.
The real heart that's human,
That throbs with love divine,
Will beat in tune with others
Whose souls in Glory shine.
And now to this day's doings. Mr. Sullivan came in from Temple with an injured left arm and shoulder, for some baths and gentle massage. He said, "I'll never forget when my mother came here from Moody forty-two years ago on a cot loaded into the baggage car. She got into Marlin at night, and some young doctor met her at the train and took her to the Bethesda in a small wagon. She had rheumatism in every joint -- couldn't even feed herself."
I told him I was the young doctor who was running the Bethesda and it was I who treated her; that we bathed his mother in her room with hot mineral water fomentations, like Sister Kenny does now. That we had portable tin tubs to bring into her room, and that No.9 was the medicine we used then, as now, for such cases.
He said, "Well, you certainly did a good job. She never had another attack like that as long as she lived."
It is my greatest joy now to hear of those old cases that I treated forty years ago, before we knew anything about focal infection and when cleanliness and proper diet, with a cheerful mind, were our favorite prescriptions. I taught the patients the various uses of our mineral water, recommended milk, vegetables, fruits, one egg and a little meat daily, which I find will suit any stomach-with, of course, a reasonable amount of bread of various kinds.
JUNE 18, 1945
Mrs. W. C. Heathcock of Mercedes, Texas, says she began having fever December 7, 1943. It was a low grade type of fever, running from 100 to 101 degrees, with rheumatism which in a few days developed allover her body, in practically every joint. The pain was so severe that she could not move herself around. She took treatments of many kinds, including intravenous, and salicylates, but on February 4 of this year she decided to come to Marlin. She was brought in a car, not able to handle herself enough to take the baths.
Mrs. Heathcock's sister was with her and was very efficient in assisting with hot mineral water fomentations. These were applied around the joints for three hours every morning, and three hours every afternoon, and kept hot with hot water bottles. After they were removed the fomentations cooled and the patient was dried thoroughly. Then wintergreen liniment was used.
Internally she was given No.9, which is our regular prescription for acute arthritis - so-called rheumatic or infectious arthritis. In four days' time she was up and walking all over town, and after that she took a few more baths and went back home.
She returned again in June and had her tonsils removed. They were not so bad, but she was advised to have them out on account of the possibility of harboring a continued infection that might become active.
I feel sure that for acute cases of arthritis or rheumatic fever the Kenney method of hot fomentations, with mineral water or Epsom salts solution (one tablespoonful to a pint of hot water) kept up for at least three hours in the morning and three hours in the afternoon, and then allowed to get cold and removed, with a gentle rubbing of stimulating liniment into the joints when dry, is the very best treatment that could be used. The bed, of course, should be covered with rubber sheeting or with oil cloth so that it will not get wet during the application of hot fomentations.
We have had similar cases from states surrounding Texas, but there is some difference in the types of infections. Most of them, however -about 80 per cent - are influenzal infections, with a history of developing into a rheumatic condition about two weeks, usually, after the low grade infection has started with a cold, or what is called "flu."
Build up your fighting powers each day
With sunshine, exercise and food;
Take sleep and rest, then work and play
With hopeful, optimistic mood.
Right habits, with the right thought, too,
Make you live long, as you should do.
- J. W. T., in Pastime Poems.
* * *
Dr. Hertzler, author of "The Horse and Buggy Doctor," had a very large nose. He often said that he gave it a chance to grow because he kept it out of other people's business. He said, "It was too bad that Kansas noses were notoriously small."
JUNE 21, 1945
Millions today cheer General Dwight D. Eisenhower in Washington and in New York on his return from Europe, where he was commander of the Allied troops that defeated Germany and led to the unconditional surrender of the entire Nazi army.
The General told more than 2,000,000 persons: "If we are going to live in peace we must be strong and ready to cooperate in the spirit of true tolerance and forbearance. It isn't enough to devise every kind of international machinery to keep the peace; we must be strong ourselves. Weakness cannot cooperate with anything; only strength can cooperate."
Yes, we must be strong physically, morally and spiritually. Above all, we must make the Golden Rule our pattern in all things, and thus bring into action the longed for Brotherhood of Man, and permanent peace in the world.
In Drew Pearson's column of today he said, "If General MacArthur had not fired Colonel Eisenhower in the Philippines, he might have been a Japanese prisoner, along with the sixteen generals the Japs are holding as prisoners there now, instead of the hero of the world that he is today." Just another instance of what small things may change one's entire career. Let us live each day seriously, especially during the formative, deciding years of life.
JUNE 23, 1945
"All right, Mr. Collier, you say you want to break yourself of the cigarette habit?"
"I surely do, Doctor. I thought maybe your advice and the baths would help me."
"Now, if you want to quit cigarettes, the thing for you to do is to stop smoking for three days -by sheer will power- and take your tonic No.3. In three days after you have done that and have taken daily baths, you will lose your taste for cigarettes; they usually will make you sick if you try to smoke them, just like they did the first time you ever smoked. In other words, you can quit if you want to."
"And here's Mrs. J. C. Thomas, Sr., from Pasadena, Texas. We're certainly glad to see you again, Mrs. Thomas, and to know that you don't have the same symptoms you had when you were here three years ago. You say you have rheumatism, though, and as proof you display little knots in your joints, called 'Heberden's nodes.' They are usually present in chronic cases, and may be due in a measure to gouty conditions. The treatments here always relieve your type of trouble. Have a good time, keep cheerful, make a lot of new friends, and you'll be surprised how much better you will feel in a short time."
"Well, Marvin T ____ of Cameron, here you are - you and your nerves. You are having what is called 'a nervous breakdown,' but yours seem to be working overtime. Try to forget them. Your mother says she had the same trouble several years ago, and she understands how you feel. You had better listen to her. She can give you a lot of information and good advice. And it would be well for you to read psychological articles in the better magazines - like 'YOUR LIFE.'
"Above all, keep busy; cultivate a hobby; raise flowers to carry to sick people; collect stamps; learn a new language, or to playa musical instrument - if your mother could stand that. You think too much about yourself, my friend."
Don't brood o'er the past with its sorrows;
It is gone forever more;
Nor long for the coming tomorrows,
To see what they hold in store;
But work and play in the present;
The passing hours employ;
Then the future days will be pleasant,
And your memories filled with joy.
JULY 4, 1945
One hundred and sixty-nine years ago this afternoon, after a long and continuous debate the formal Declaration of Independence was passed by the Continental Congress in Independence Hall, Philadelphia, and the Liberty Bell rang out a paean of freedom that was to sound around the world.
The old sexton had sat for hours waiting with waning confidence for the signal that the Declaration had been passed and that he should start the Liberty Bell to ringing. At last the word came and the glad message went pealing forth.
We who were born in America are apt to fail, in a measure, to appreciate the freedom we enjoy. Those who come to our shores from lands of oppression in Europe are more likely to enjoy to the fullest extent their newly found liberty.
Kenneth Foree's excellent article in yesterday's Dallas News is well forth quoting here. It is one example of the appreciation felt by foreign-born American citizens:
"Independence Day means a whole lot more than picnics - or chiggers. . . . A little Greek came to this country in 1905 to escape from oppression in Turkey. He arrived here with a gash on his leg, acquired on shipboard, seventy- five cents in his pocket, and no words of English on his tongue. He was taken to a hospital and given free treatment for the wound, and it was then that he first realized what the lady with the big light meant. She meant kindness-protection.
"Tony (that name is as good as any) soon found a job in New York, working eighteen hours a day for fifteen dollars a month."
(To Doctor J. W. Torbett)
"So often you have gone behind
The curtains of a people's mind;
So often you have seen men's stark
White agony, and you can mark
The hour when life and death begins.
You know your townsmen's griefs and sins,
You know the secrets that they tell
To you alone, and you know well
The true and false in everyone,
And yet when all is said and done,
You are our friend. . . . What man could be
More valuable to a community."
- Grace Noll Crowell,
Reflections of a microbe upon looking up and seeing the eye of a scientist gazing down at him through the lens of a microscope:
Ah, there, old man, how do you do?
I see you see me through and through;
You see my inner workings run,
You spy upon my skeleton;
I'm mighty small, I will admit -
In size you have the best of it;
But if I tackle you, old scout,
The undertaker'll haul you out!
- Norman H. Crowell
(Poet of the Horrible)
JULY 12, 1945
My glad birthday,
To work and pray,
With friends and flowers
Along the way.
This birthday was sad at first, of course, because of too much meditation, but when my nurses, and all the other nurses in the institution began to send in beautiful flowers, my sorrows were banished, my hopes were renewed, and I felt like I was getting young again, because youth and flowers, love and happiness all go together.
I was very busy the entire day, and many congratulations and telephone calls were received. Expressions of hope for a long life of continued usefulness were bestowed upon me.
The services at the First Methodist Church in Marlin last Sunday were dedicated to me and to the little son of Rev. Moore. Tommy's birthday was July 10, here on earth; his birthday in heaven was twelve years ago. The flowers before the altar were in our joint honor.
Mr. Milton Douglas Penry of Denton, one of the officials of his church for twenty-five years, was at the service, and congratulated me on having been Chairman of the Board for forty years, and a member of the church for forty-six years. We talked of our mutual friend Hugh Nugent Fitzgerald, who was Chairman of the Board of Texas State College for Women in Denton. Fitzgerald was a Catholic, broad in his views and loyal to his church and to humanity. He was a widely known newspaper man, wrote for many leading papers, and founded the Fort Worth Record - also a paper in Wichita Falls. He will not soon be forgotten.
Mr. Joe M. Moore of Mount Vernon, Texas, came in to see me today about his son, Joe, Jr., whom he brought to me in September, 1921, when the boy was only seven years old, and had a bad valvular heart disease, called "a leaky heart." The little fellow had been ailing for four or five months, with severe pains in his legs.
Joe, Jr., took baths and treatments here for two weeks before having his embedded tonsils removed. He gradually improved and was taken back home. In two months he had the entire use of his legs and has never had a return of the trouble. At sixteen, his father says, he played baseball in school.
The young man is married now and has a son six years old. He joined the armed forces in November, 1943, was in the Aleutian Islands for seventeen months, in active service, and is still strong and well.
In the first place, Joe was sent here by his physician, Dr. J. M. Fleming of Mount Vernon.
Such visits as that of Mr. Moore today make us feel like laughing at birthdays, so long as we can continue to be useful in helping to build up the health and to prolong the lives of others.
Be sure to cover your sneeze, if you don't you'll spread disease -
My honey read where you doctors
said germs are dangerous carried by kissin'!
Humph, that doctor's crazy, too old or too lazy, he doan know what he's missin';
I's been to war, what's courage for if not to fight and make you free?
So my honey bunch, jes' take this hunch, come feed your germs to me.
Be careful, girls, with your germs. The hand-kiss is the only safe one.
on't be like the little boy, with a cold, who went to Sunday School. The teacher asked him what the Lord had done for him. "Well, He's done a plenty, but we've got all mixed up - my eyes are to see but they're crossed, my nose to smell but it runs, my feet are to run with but they smell, and I have a freckle on my face and the girls all want it but I can't give it to 'em."
JULY 15, 1945
It will soon be time for people with skin diseases to be. gin coming to Marlin. Many cases of very severe eruptions which have not been helped by treatments elswhere have found the mineral water here to be particularly soothing and healing.
I recall two cases of contact dermatitis that came from Wheelock, Texas. For the lady in the first case the trouble started in November with an unbearable itching and breaking out. I told her it looked like poison oak, but she did not see how she could have acquired it at that season of the year. She stayed at Mart with her daughter, and came to Marlin for the baths. They benefited her almost immediately and she went back home.
But the next fall she was here again, as bad as ever. This time she told me she had had her wood cut in early summer, and that there was much poison oak on it. In the fall she could use her bare hands to make fires, and the dried poison oak on the wood caused the dermatitis. The water here washed off the poison and healed the skin.
The second case was that of an elderly lady who came to us in December with a dermatitis allover her face and hands. I told her it might be caused from cedar, because it started in December, when cedar pollinates. She said she had a cedar tree in her yard, and I advised her to have it cut down if the rash returned when she went back home. She soon recovered from her trouble, but it did return in full force when she returned to her home. She had the cedar tree cut down and was not troubled by dermatitis any more.
Another case was that of Mrs. Kluck, from a nearby community, who had a terrible itching of the skin. I gave her a talk on contact dermatitis and told her how it might be caused by dyes, wool, and other substances touching the skin. Later, she herself noticed that she got it every time she wore a certain dress. She quit having it when she stopped wearing that dress. The trouble was caused by the color, which had a certain dye in it.
The case of Mr. Jordan of Crockett is another example of contact dermatitis. His trouble was so severe that he sought relief in Galveston, Marlin, and many other places. He always received temporary relief, but when he went back home his old trouble would start again. One year I met him in the office of Dr. Goeckerman of the Mayo Clinic, from whom he was taking treatments and getting results. I told Dr. Goeckerman that I thought he would relapse as soon as he got back home, for I believe there was something in the soil there that caused his trouble. The doctor told him this and advised him to consult me if he relapsed.
When I returned to Marlin two weeks later, one of the first persons I saw was Mr. Jordon, evidently in great distress from intense itching. I advised him to get away from his native soil and go west. He moved to Abilene and then to Lubbock, and has remained free of skin trouble ever since -- or until he died last year. I have seen many cases of dermatitis that were cured by the simple expedient of moving to another location.
July 17, 1945
A letter from Kitty Whitmire of Voth, Texas, came today. She was here two years ago with a very rare disease known as schleroderma. I prescribed peanut oil for her, which was recommended so highly to me by George Washington Carver when I visited with him. She said she had gotten very much better, and that I would scarcely know her. That hard, boney feel of the muscles, and the skin that was so tight, had loosened up very much and now was a great deal softer.
I received a letter also from Mr. Julius Hopkins of Oakhurst, Texas, who had gone home thirty-seven years ago to die from an ulcerative colitis. I had been treating him for a month for diarrhea and had made all sorts of tests to find out the cause of it. It was evidently bacterial in type; he had had it a long time and had tried many treatments. He imagined that the undertakers looked at him as though they thought they'd get him in a few days. I said, "Let's fool 'em. You go on home and try one more treatment - one teaspoonful of castor oil and three drops of turpentine each night at bedtime."
In about four months, the man came to my front door and said, "Hello, Doc!" I answered, "Howdy do, sir? What can I do for you ?"
"You don't know me, do you? I'm the man you sent home to die four months ago. I weighed 125 pounds and now I weigh 182. I've come back to know if I can quit that castor oil and turpentine." He had changed so that I did not recognize him.
"Yes, Mr. Hopkins," I said, "I think you can cut it out now." He said in the letter received today that he had been well all these years, except for an occasional relapse, and then the "castor oil always did the trick." It surely was what cured him, he said, and he hadn't any trouble at all in the last seven or eight years. He is now 78 and weighs 165 pounds. I saw him recently.
I have used the castor oil for several hundreds of patients since then, and for cases of pellagra. I gave them the regular balanced diet that I have always prescribed for my patients - milk, eggs, meat once a day, and all the vegetables they could eat.
At that time I made a note of the fact that of all those who had been drinking whisky, none of them recovered.
Another interesting case came in today - Father Etchenberg from Victoria, Texas. He brought a letter from Dr. F. B. Shields, my oId-time friend. Dr. Shields was here at Marlin about forty years ago with a severe case of catarrhal jaundice. He was yellow as a pumpkin, and silent as a sphinx. He took the baths and treatments (which are noted in the back of this book) for about ten days. Then he thawed out and became a better talker than I am - which is going some. Any of my friends can tell you that in a conversation (?) I don't allow them to get in a word edgewise. But I've had jaundice, too, and I know how dull and stupid it can make one. So I took him out driving to show him the town, and really gave him a chance to talk. Dr. Shields has been my friend all these years, and has referred many of his patients to me - all of the highest type. He has a worthy son, who is following in his father's footsteps as a physician.
Father Etchenberg came to Marlin about 37 years ago with a severe case of rheumatism, involving his feet and one hand. He was hardly able to do anything at all. After about thirty days of baths and treatments he recovered from his trouble and has been comparatively healthy all these years. Recently he had a return of the old trouble in his hands and knees. His weight makes it bad for his knees. And now, after so many years of usefulness to the people of Victoria, he comes again at the age of seventy-five to renew his health and vigor - strong intellectually and spiritually.
I have a beautiful picture of pansies, painted by one of the Sisters in the convent in Victoria, presented to me in appreciation of the treatment I gave one of the Sisters. Sister Augusta is a wonderful painter, and this picture of hers has been admired by hundreds of people. Just another little thing she has done that will go down the years making folks happy.
I know that the Lord loves beauty,
And colors both bright and gay;
He's painted them all in Nature
To cheer us along life's way.
- J. W. T.
JULY 20, 1945
We have many patients who cannot be mentioned in this book because their cases are similar to others, and we try to avoid repetition, but many come back to take the baths and to thank us for having taught them how to live. For instance:
Mrs. J. R. Moore from Decatur, Texas, went home today, having finished her eleventh trip. She has had all sorts of treatments and one necessary operation. Now she returns from time to time for the change and a rest, and goes back home happy and contented, a shining example to her friends of what a well-planned, commonsense vacation can do for one.
Another patient who is going home today is Mr. Otto Hahn of Malone, Texas. He came here last October with a blood pressure of 224/128. His pulse was 88 - good and strong, but his left side was partially paralyzed, and he was dragging his left foot. This condition had come on him about a month before. Mr. Hahn's blood pressure now is considerably lower, but he can never be entirely cured. However, he may live a long time by following the advice given in a later section of this book.
JULY 22, 1945
A few days ago a patient came in and said his name was Dewees, and he wanted to be examined to find out what was the matter with him. "Dad gum it! I feel so bad I don't know what to do." He thought he would come down and take the baths and see what else I could do for him.
I said, "Well, you used my by - word. Where did you get that 'dad gum it'?" "Well, he said, "I was born over on Gum Creek." I said, "So was I, and I guess you have a right to use it if you were born there."
He said, "You know there are a lot of fine folks that were born there." I said, "Yes, some of your ancestors must have been doctors. 'Dewees,' you know, is the old asafoetida mixture used for colicky babies way back years ago." He said he guessed he had to take it himself, but he didn't have any use for it at the present time. He said, "Anyhow, there were a great many famous doctors that came from that part of the country around Gum Creek, close to Jacksonville." He said all the Travis boys - father, son and uncle, who founded the Nan Travis Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, which is so popular now, were born there, and Dr. Long- mire of Temple was born there, and "you were born there."
"Yes," I said. He said, "Tom Campbell, the former Governor, told me that he was born there, close to Antioch Church where they used to go to church and Sunday School."
"Well," I said, "do you remember that wonderful time over there in Jacksonville on the fiftieth anniversary of the city, in which they had two days of festivities that were unparalleled? That night I saw them dance in their old colonial costumes. During the afternoon I made a speech, reciting the poem, 'Pioneers,' which Mr. McFarland published in the newspaper, and which I will give, and which was later given at a similar occasion in Caldwell, the home town of my wife."
They had the most wonderful homecoming there they have ever had before or since.
At Jacksonville Judge Earl introduced me, and told about bouncing me on his lap and prophesying that I would be a great fellow some day. Of course, that was all just talk that one likes to hear, but knows it isn't so. I was the principal speaker and the honor guest, and talked to 12,000 people standing and not one of them made a bobble or noise.
The event lasted two days, and Aunt Sallie Dougherty Torbett and Mrs. Cheshire rode on the honor float. Mrs. Cheshire lived to be more than 103 years of age.
There is something in that Jacksonville soil and air that seems to make people ambitious. Many preachers have gone out from that little school, Lon Morris College, which goes on down the years teaching and training students. Mr. Peebles now is president of the college, and others in the past have been loyal presidents, and very wonderful work has been done in the school.
The other homecoming that I spoke of was in Caldwell on May 15, 1923. I gave an address similar to the one before, giving the same poem, "Pioneers," and spoke about the old home ninety years old near the old Spanish Trail, where the King family lived, the home of my wife, Mrs. Johnnie King Brooks, and Charles H. King, retired, now living in Los Angeles, California. Many former citizens who have gone out into the world and made a name for themselves were back that day. Dr. Charles Stone of Galveston was on the program. Senator R. S. Bowers presided, my wife sang two songs, "Coming Home" and "May Time." Governor Pat Neff gave the dedication address and when he asked who it was that was responsible for this gala day, they told him that Mrs. Brooks, a member of the Board of Education, had planned it all, the homecoming and dedication of the new school building. The flower committee had presented Governor Neff with a floral red, white and blue Texas Star. He called Mrs. Brooks forward to present her with the beautiful bouquet in honor of his mother.
John Love Boles, my cousin, was born in Jacksonville, and heard the mockingbirds sing, the screech owl screech, and was fed on those matchless rose colored tomatoes and the tasty Elbertas.
AUGUST 4, 1945
You cannot be the sun or moon
To light the day or night,
But you can be to friends a boon
To light the paths of right.
You cannot be a shimmering star
To build God's heavenly plan,
But you can shine just where you are
The very best you can.
August "dog days" are here with their depressive heat, but we can forget the temperature and thank God for friends who return to renew old ties. Mrs. J. F. Hackett of Chilton, a friend of many years, now aged eighty-two, came in today for a check-up. She has found to be in very good condition, after having passed through a spell of pneumonia last winter, during which she was attended successfully by our good friend Dr. J. T. Harrington of Waco, Texas.
I advised Mrs. Hackett to keep up the prescribed diet and not allow herself to overwork during these hot summer days. Her presence here reminds me of the time that Mr. Hackett sent for me in 1931, during that terrible depression. He wanted me to do something for his fever and for the chronic colitis that had been bothering him for several months. He had fever, weak spells, and almost continuous diarrhoea. I thought it might be tuberculosis colitis, and prescribed goat milk for him, because goat milk had more iron in it, and goats have never had tuberculosis.
Mr. Hackett secured a healthy goat and kept it tied out in the yard. It kept the lawn mowed down, and furnished him with all the milk he needed. Besides, he took teaspoonful doses of castor oil at night, and occasionally our prescription No. 11, if his bowels were too loose. He slowly but steadily improved and as I commented when I saw him at the Old Settlers Reunion, where I was making a speech:
"Just look at my good friend J. F. Hackett - my castor oil baby-smiling from ear to ear, and with a ruddy glow of health on his cheeks." He had fully recovered and was enjoying himself with his friends. He passed away six years later, however, with pneumonia, at the age of 88.
I have prescribed small doses of castor oil for hundreds of patients in the last thirty-five years for healing the colon and restoring normal health after an appendectomy or a gall bladder operation.
Donald Merrell several years ago came to Marlin after hearing me state at a New York banquet that I believed if we could get a tasteless and odorless castor oil someone would make a fortune out of it. The idea stayed in his mind and he came to Marlin to talk with me about it, and finally produced Soricin with its various combinations.
The first case for which I prescribed Soricin was that of the Hon. Dennis Flynn of Oklahoma City, who came to Marlin with a persistent colitis. After taking this new variation of castor oil he soon recovered and lived to be 82 before passing on. He was a member of Congress.
AUGUST 15, 1945
Oh, the magic spell of summer,
With its stars and moon so bright,
When the daylight's cares and worries
Give their place to joys at night.
"Well, Mr. and Mrs. Gardner, are you raising and eating plenty of vegetables, as I advised you to do when you were here three years ago? I'm sure the light exercise in the garden is helping you."
Mr. Gardner grinned. "I just came along and brought my wife so we can be checked up a little to see if you can make 1946 models of us. I know the new models are coming out now, and we want to be up to date."
"All right - and what seems to be the trouble with you, Mrs. Gardner?".
"Well," she said ruefully, "I need my self-starter worked on a little bit. I've got rheumatism in my knees. I was here once before, in 1928, with my father, Dr. Givens of Abernathy."
"Oh, yes! I'm certainly glad to hear from him again."
"Yes, my father came here on a stretcher; he'd been down with rheumatism six weeks. He'd had the flu before that, but he kept on trying to go.
You know he was a doctor and a preacher, too. They carried him in here on a cot and in four weeks he was back home in good shape. He stayed in your hospital a few days and after that he went back and forth from Waco. I brought him every day for a while and he kept on with the baths and treatments. You got him fixed up all right and he enjoyed life for six years. Then he had an accident and got killed."
"That's a very unusual story, Mrs. Gardner. Would you mind telling me more about your father? I need a story of an old-time country doctor for the book I am writing, called the 'Doctor's Scrap Book'." So she told me this story, which I am summarizing for my readers:
When Dr. Givens first came here, April 15, 1928, he was 67 years old and had been a very active man. He weighed about 230 pounds and he was called "the happy doctor." It was never too cold or too hot for him to respond to the calls of his patients. He preached in the summer, all over Northwest Texas, and up into Oklahoma, holding revival meetings. The happy doctor gave half of what he made from his practice to the church, and at one time he gave $10,000 to build churches in Abernathy and in two rural sections. On his Golden Wedding anniversary, a short time before his death, he gave a dinner in his home to 150 relatives. After that they went to Abernathy and had a program, at which 2,000 people - patients and friends from all over the country - were present.
At the age of 73-about six years after he was here, he was driving rapidly and ran into a car parked on the wrong side of the street. The impact crushed his chest and broke his leg, and he died a few days later. Thus ended the life of a typical country doctor, who loved his work and his people, and who lives in the minds and hearts of those he served so well during the many years that he was a rural physician and a Methodist preacher.
SEPTEMBER 25, 1945
This has been a busy and a happy day. In the first place, while reading the Waco Tribune, I came across a little story about Bill Schriner and his wife, Billy Guynes Schriner. When I first met them they were sweethearts and I had them come to Marlin to put on a program for the Rotary Club. They were wonderful singers.
Bill is a great tall fellow with a big baritone voice, and his wife is a lyric soprano. On the night before he was to go to the Navy they were secretly married in the Methodist church at Waco. In the service, he went across the ocean on the ship Anton, where he was engaged in combat with German airplanes. Mrs. Schriner was in Washington and happened to be listening to a radio program when she heard her husband's voice, most unexpectedly, giving a command to his men on the boat to fire on the German airplanes. She heard the airplane struck, and the sound of it coming down, seething and whistling, to the ground. And again as she heard the voice of her husband, she knew that he had been successful in that terrific engagement.
The record that had been made of this broadcast was given by the company to the United States Government in Washington and later was sold, through the efforts of Mrs. Schriner, for $100,000. Bill is back and they put on a program at Baylor, of which school they both are graduates, and I talked with them over the phone.
The next thing of interest today is the case of Mr. M. G. Cox of Cameron, a lawyer. He came to Texas in 1911 with about $10, and while out working as a bill collector, in the rain and cold, he contracted pleurisy, with severe pains across his chest. It was found, following the pleurisy, that he had an adhesion between the pleura and the pericardium.
Later on, he had a partial tearing away of the adhesion while handling a horse. The horse jumped and jerked him, and he fainted away from the pain. Then he came to Marlin and I treated him with negative galvanic current through the adhesions, rubbed him with Iodex in the hope of dissolving some of them in order to relieve his pain and difficult breathing.
One Sunday morning, when he was getting a little better, he went to church. He began singing lustily, when suddenly he felt weak and started to leave the church. Out on the street he fainted and was brought to the hospital in a serious state of collapse. It was soon discovered that the adhesions had been torn away entirely, and since then he has had no more pain or soreness, and no further trouble with his heart. He says now that it was the singing of the song and his deepened respiration that completed the correction of his trouble, but he gives due credit to the attention we had given him before, and the care immediately after, the lusty praise to God that was so effective.
Mrs. Cox has been our patient, too, and both of them are our steadfast friends, bringing many others to our institution for treatment.
We live in "a house by the side of the road"
To serve our neighbors who come and go;
To help the needy in bearing life's load;
To lighten a little their ills and woe;
To share God's love and peace and gladness,
And brighten paths of gloom and sadness.
- J. W. T. in Pastime Poems.
SEPTEMBER 28, 1945
As I approached the village of Riesel in McLennan County, this morning, the first verse of my song, "Grand Old Friendly Texas," kept singing itself through my mind. This song has been a part of many programs throughout the State, and Texans love it:
You grand old friendly Texas,
With all your hills and dales,
Your ranches and your prairies,
Your old-time Spanish trails;
We love you for your history,
Your men and women, too,
The deeds of noble valor
They did while making you.
There are six stanzas and a chorus, all of them breathing the spirit of Texas patriotism.
I made this trip on the invitation of Mrs. Rebecca Glass Dean, joined in by Miss Lucille Kistler, to come to Riesel and make a talk at the chapel exercises of their school. There were several hundred children and their opening program was most interesting.
A boy of fifteen, Raymond Bost, read a chapter from the Bible, ending with the words, "There remaineth these three, Faith Hope and Charity - but the greatest of these is Charity." He was followed by a retired Methodist minister, Rev. J. W. Witt, who prayed earnestly that Charity - or Love - might remain in the hearts of all peoples. Then the school sang with enthusiasm Julia Ward Howe's "Battle Hymn of the Republic."
In my talk I commended them all on their method of opening the school day. Riesel is a German community (or German-American), whose forebears left autocratic Germany for democratic America. They are fine, industrious people. The superintendent, Paul Thompson, has been teaching there four years; Mrs. Dean has been there at least twenty years. It was indeed a happy day for me.
OCTOBER 2, 1946
This date recalls one of the golden memories of my life, when I went, just a year ago today, to attend the Golden Wedding Anniversary of Bishop and Mrs. H. A. Boaz. Bishop Boaz is not only outstanding as a church leader, but he has been president of Southern Methodist University and the Texas Woman's College in Fort Worth for many years. A biographical sketch is given in another part of this book.
More than one hundred guests - distinguished persons, bishops and preachers from all over Texas and near by, were present on this happy occasion. Bishop Frank Smith gave a splendid address after Bishop Boaz had told something of his own life and his appreciation of this occasion. Bishop Selecman presided.
After that the inimitable Knickerbocker - there being no others like him-gave a "home-made" poem, and was followed by the writer, who recited an original poetic tribute to this remarkable couple on their useful lives and their beneficent activity.
I visited the office of the Dallas Morning News, meeting several wonderful fellows there: Harry Withers, Ted Dealey, John Knott and Hilton Greer, and winding up with a visit to Mr. George Dealey himself, that matchless man who has lived such a long and useful life. I had sent to him on his birthday, September 18, a little poem of my own, which he seemed to appreciate very much:
You've wandered down life's winding ways,
And seen much joy and sorrow;
You've reached the evening's golden haze
That paints a bright tomorrow.
You've left your imprint on the friends
In life who've chanced to meet you;
Now when this hallowed twilight ends
May angels gladly greet you.
Mr. Dealey had indeed lived a long and useful life, and the end of the journey '''as near. He passed on a few weeks ago.
But bringing my notes up to this day in 1945, I greet Mrs. J. D. Frank of Livingston, who has been coming to Marlin for many years. "Glad to see you again, Mrs. Frank. What's the trouble with you now?"
"Fingerprints of old age, I guess. I'm getting stiff, and kinda worn out. I came this time for my rheumatism. I've been here for pneumonia, and once for after effect of flu, and-well, you know. But I have been gettin' along pretty well lately, considerin'."
"Yes," I said, "maybe it is the fingerprints of Father Time, but let me tell you a little rhyme:
"The Lord helps those who help themselves;
But those who don't, He puts on the shelves."
"Don't let yourself be put on the shelf. Fight it out; take care of yourself; be optimistic; live right; eat right; rest right, and say your prayers. You'll be surprised at the result."
OCTOBER 14, 1945
This is a beautiful Sunday morning and I feel greatly refreshed by a two days' visit to Dallas and Fort Worth. I went to the office and met several new patients, and some of the old ones, who seemed glad I had had this pleasant outing. Among other notables was Admiral Chester Nimitz in Dallas, at the great celebration given him there.
Mrs. Torbett and I had dinner at the Majestic Hotel today with Mr. and Mrs. B. C. Campbell of Conroe, Texas. These good people have been coming to Marlin for many years for a change, a check-up, and the diversion secured by such a visit.
The subject of my speech at Dallas was "The Responsibilities of the United States as Guardian of the Atomic Bomb and World Peace." My main points were that we must follow the good neighbor policy, be kind and friendly, open and frank with our allies. Professor Lassen of the Agricultural College at Arlington, Texas, favorably discussed the talk I had made and pointed out the importance of international investigations by a committee for the Allied Nations.
Among other congenial people I met were Dolly Lee Davis Smith, recently poet laureate of Texas. Hilton Ross Greer of the Dallas News read "God Kept His Secret," by Grace Noll Crowell, who could not be present. Lilith Lorraine read her sonnet "The Final Boon," and I read my poem, "Our World Today," which was published recently in the Southwestern Advocate. It was a most refreshing and stimulating occasion.
The earth is three-fourths water composed of two parts hydrogen, which burns with great heat, and one part of oxygen, the supporter of combustion or ordinary fire. The air is made of four parts nitrogen, the basis of all great explosives, and one part of oxygen, the same supporter of fire. It is possible that a bomb exploded deep under the ocean's water could set the world on fire and burn it up. I wrote this to President Truman.
"God Kept His Secret
"God kept His secret of atomic force
Safe in His own heart, safe in His infinite mind,
Letting the endless centuries run their course
Deeming it wise that no man yet should find
The key that would unlock that awful might;
That terrible power He, Himself, had turned
Upon a darkened void, and brought forth light
While seas were born, and mountains rocked and burned.
And now at last He has given men the key
To knowledge that can tear the world apart,
A thing so vast in its immensity
It staggers the mind, it all but stops the heart!
God, keep us humble, make us wise and strong And worthy to share Thy secret kept so long."
- Grace Noll Crowell,
A meeting of the board of directors, of which I am chairman, of the Authors and Composers of America, was held in Fort Worth on Saturday, October 13, and in company with other members of this nationwide organization I went over there from Dallas to enjoy renewed association with a very congenial group. We set the time of the next meeting as June 7 and 8, 1946.
The Authors and Composers is composed of members interested in the advancement of literature, music, poetry and other cultural aims. It was a very pleasant day.
Whenever I go traveling,
No matter where I go,
I meet some happy dreamers
I'm always glad to know,
Who share with me their fondest dreams,
And hear my latest rhymes and schemes -
And thus we pass the time away
To make another happy day.
Late this evening (Sunday) I joined the throng of friends who were passing, and going in and out, to visit our neighbor, Mrs. Mattie Branson, who was celebrating her birthday. She is one of the oldest citizens, and an authority on Marlin history. I wrote this greeting to her:
Mrs. Mattie Bramon
You linger on life's flowering way;
You've reached the milestone eighty-seven;
Sweet mem'ries brighten up each day
Along your pathway up to heaven,
Where you will meet each angel friend
When this glad twilight here shall end.
Good neighbors that we found when we moved to our new home on Houghton Avenue was the excellent Dunkum family. Three generations have been loyal friends of ours.
Mr. and Mrs. J. A. Dunkum and Willis have passed on. Miss Mary Louise is married, Mrs. Willis Dunkum and son Billy, just honorably discharged from the Air Service, and Doris, who was married recently.
You lived for years just on our west,
Of all our neighbors you were the best,
When sorrows came ,within your heart
We always gladly shared a part,
When joys and sorrows to us came
You always gladly did the same,
And thus we lived as neighbors should,
Each always for the other's good,
Rejoicing in each small success
That come our hearts and homes to bless.
But one dark night Death's Angel carne -
Your loyal soul from you to claim.
We miss so much your loving face
That came at eve to take its place
To join with us in friendship's ways,
Fond mem'ry paints as halcyon days
The love and friendship that you gave
Through those bright years we gladly save
On mem'ry's walls to lead us on
To heavenly realms where you have gone.
Pause for associated memories.
While attending the State Hospital Association meeting in Fort Worth Mrs. Fondren brought in the sad news of the death of Rev. J. Coy Williams, who has been a member of the Orphanage Board for sixteen years, and was vice president. I phoned Mrs. Williams and wrote the following prayer:
Rev. J. Coy Williams
Good-bye to you, our loving friend,
May friendly skies above you bend
As angels with your soul ascend
To heaven where joys shall never end.
It was put in the minutes of the Home with the Board resolutions.
The most important question before the medical profession and the people today are the Wagner-Murray-Dingell Bills now before Congress. They have framed a law which seeks to destroy Americanized medicine and substitute Federal medicine. They seek to levy a compulsory tax of 8 per cent on the pay checks of 110,000,000 people. Of this 4 per cent is taken from the employee and 4 per cent from the employer. Self-employed pay 5 per cent up to maximum earnings of $3,600. Federal workers pay 2 1/2 per cent. It does nothing for the poor indigent!
The bills put the administration of the three billion-dollar health insurance plan in the hands of one man, the Surgeon General of the United States Public Health Service, who need not necessarily be a doctor. He will have absolute power over thousands of new high-salaried Federal employees, all the doctors, all the nurses, all the dentists, all the pharmacists, all the hospitals, all the chemists. It will be a tremendously powerful political machine which could control practice in America, and keep its friends in public office. Red tape and government forms will be endless.
Prepaid medical and surgical insurance on the low monthly plans are now being used everywhere in the United States, and take care of our health problems much better than socialized medicine could do.
Dr. E. H. Cary is a tireless, dynamic worker for what he thinks is right, and since the Baylor Medical College has moved to Houston, he is head of the Great Southwestern Medical Center that is being organized in Dallas. He has been affiliated with the Blue Cross plan for hospitalization insurance. He has also organized a growing concern to pay for medical and surgical services. It is a non-profit plan, and already has been successfully worked in many states.
He strongly opposes socialized medicine.
OCTOBER 18, 1945
This beautiful fall day carries me back to the autumn of 1942, when Miss Gussie Oscar gave us some very notable entertainments in Waco, which Mrs. Torbett and I attended with a great deal of pleasure.
When I look down, deep in my mind,
To see what I have buried there,
I get ashamed of what I find
And bow my head in silent prayer.
Soon golden memories come again
To thrill my heart with boundless joy
With friendship's flowers down paths I've been
That autumn's frosts cannot destroy.
Yes, we all have 'memories - some that we'd like to forget, and others that we like to view again with fond recollection. The entertainments that I now recall are among my memory treasures.
The first of these was given by Grace Noll Crowell and her husband, Norman Crowell. He was a veritable wit, and a rhymster like myself. Grace began by giving quite a number of her beautiful poems, as published in her books. Then Norman came forward and said, as he looked down the hall and saw me, "I see my friend Dr. Torbett, who is about 27 miles out of his orbit, and who writes poetry for his patients so they may absorb it." His wit is very spontaneous and surprising, of its kind. No one has any idea what he will say next-neither the Lord nor himself.
The next entertainment given in October was by Edgar Guest. I was asked by Miss Oscar to introduce him, and went down to the hotel to meet him. We had a delightful visit. He is a very human sort of fellow, and everybody knows the illimitable amount of verse he produces for publication, ground out every day as did the late Judd Mortimer Lewis, who kept it up for more than forty-five years. This is one of his best that has been quoted all over the world:
"If you get to feeling grouchy,
Let the sun shine in;
If your face gets hot and pouchy,
Just crack it with a grin.
"Don't be afraid of wrinkles;
Tear loose with all your mirth;
For a face with laughter wrinkled
Is the sweetest thing on earth."
And here is a jingle that was an especial favorite of the late Henry Edwards, well-loved newspaper man of Tyler, Texas:
"There's ain't no use a-scowlin
Because wind's a-howlin'
And the rain makes a rattle and a squall;
There's still a lot of fun in
This world's the Lord's a-runnin' --
And the rain makes the rainbow for us all."
The nationally known poets who attended this get-together accepted me as a fellow-craftsman, and their fraternal kindness is a source of joy to me as I recall it from time to time.
OCTOBER 20, 1945
"Habits gather by unseen degrees
As brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas."
We are creatures of habit - some of them formed in our youth, usually in childhood-which are repeated so often that they stay with one through life, unless by effort and will power they are changed or broken.
Habits are acts of the mind or physical make-up that are repeated so often they become a part of one's life, automatically or by reflex action, and require no attention to carry them out. Webster says, "an aptitude or inclination acquired by repetition and marked by facility of performance or decreased power of resistance."
I believe that on this beautiful October morning a little talk with you patients on "habit" is the best prescription I could offer you. Good habits should be established by will power and regular effort, or at a time set apart for certain things. I once could go to sleep at an exact hour, and set my mind on the hour I should wake up. Inevitably my eyes would open at that time. William Jennings Bryan had the same habit, and other people do.
Benjamin Franklin in his autobiography tells about the good habits that he cultivated by keeping books on himself and writing down every time he violated one of his principles of correct living.
One should acquire health habits: a certain time to go to bed, if possible; a certain time to sleep. If one has some heart trouble, or has reached the age when rest is necessary, a certain period should be set aside in the afternoon for relaxation. The siesta of the Mexican people is an excellent custom-a relief from friction, nervous strain and excitement.
The calls of nature should by all means be regular and insisted upon if necessary. Everyone should cultivate the habit of exercising every morning at the same time. Exercises in or on the bed are conducive to good health and take very little time -- much less than going out to play tennis or golf.
I recall the names of several friends of mine who took up golf after sixty years of age, strained their hearts, and died suddenly from overexertion.
Speaking of habits generally, nearly everyone has some special habit, good or bad, or simply peculiar. Emperor William had the habit of pulling his left ear-which I do myself sometimes. Once when he was visiting Queen Victoria one of the children in the family said, "Uncle William, why do you pull your left ear?" "Oh, just a nervous habit, I guess." "Well, if you got very nervous, what would you do?" He said, "I'd pull the other fellow's ear."
Finally he tried to pull the ear of the whole world, but he failed.
The Alcoholics Anonymous is an organization started by two men about twelve years ago, who could not quit drinking. They had the symptoms of an alcoholic, and they would start drinking, and when they touched the very first drop of it, they lost themselves, and went on until they got dead drunk. These are the symptoms of the members of the association, which has no dues, but which is to help each other get well and to have faith in a Supreme Being, and to call on that Supreme Being every morning when they look into the mirror to give them strength and will power to resist alcohol during the day. Each day is a day unto itself.
Kenneth Foree in his very original style described various cases recently, several of them in the Dallas News. One is Mrs. Marty Mann, 41 years of age, who is employed by Yale University for educational purposes, and is going all over the country lecturing on the subject, and arranging organizations of that kind.
Recently I heard Dr. Samuel Daughtry, a minister of the Christian Church in Rome, Georgia, who lectured here in Waco on the same subject. This is a very important organization. It has 30,000 members, and seventy-five per cent of the members remain cured of the alcoholic habit. They help each other-and that is one of the important things. They talk their organization up to others, and help others without any remuneration whatsoever, and there are no dues.
Anyone who is addicted to alcohol and cannot control himself should join this organization, which is doing a great work, and helping those who are diseased with an obsession that comes on them suddenly. They have a neurotic temperament though all neurotics are not alcoholics. It is the neurotic temperament that gives them the desire for liquor at once, which always ends up with vomiting or some unpleasant symptoms, but still they go back to it again and again.
The Ladies' Home Journal of August has a very splendid article on page 24 of this organization. Several other magazines have been kind enough to carryon the crusade for the organization, and to help wipe out the terrible condition of alcoholics in the country, there being probably 750,000 incurable alcoholics at the present time, and probably 55 million people in the United States who drink alcohol in some form, in a moderate degree, perhaps.
It is one of the great questions today to save the human race. It is health problem No.4. Prohibition is not the answer. The old time children's Temperance Union, the pledging of children at 10 or 12 years of age never to touch drink is with education showing the terrible results that no one starts out to reap but so often does.
Seven billion one hundred million dollars were spent in 1945 for alcoholic drinks and which caused thousands of murders, accidents and four billions for crimes it caused. The W. C. T. U. has a great problem and must be supported and pushed. The alcoholics seem to delight in punishing their nearest and dearest friends and relatives with their bad conduct.
A very fine young business man of Waco, Marcellus Brooks, came to me twice for treatment. I advised him to Join A. A. at once. He went to Fort Worth and joined, then organized a post in Waco with 24 members. He was instrumental in bringing Dr. Samuel Daughtry to Waco. I sat in front of his mother and wife and dear old father 87 years old, they were so happy to be doing something to help such unfortunate cases.
Was a physical wreck at nearly forty years of age from intemperate eating, drinking and living. After being told he could not live but a short time, he changed his habits and lived to the age of 103. He ate only 12 ounces of solid food daily, such as an egg yolk, some whole grain bread, a small bit of veal, fish or fowl, a few vegetables or soup with 14 ounces of light grape juice wine. Becoming well after several months of this diet, he was never again sick until 78 years old, when he increased his diet at the earnest request of his family, 2 ounces of the solid food and the grape wine for one week, when he became seriously sick for five weeks. He never again varied his quantity, and he always sang, talked and laughed with his friends after his evening meal. He wrote his book, "Methods of Attaining a Long Life," at 87 years of age, and the second part at 95. Thomas Edison's father, grandfather and uncle have all used that method of living. They reached the century mark and more. It was the same simple life of William Cullen Bryant, who lived to 89, and of Thomas Parr, who lived to 152 and 9 months, and was dissected by Harvey, who discovered the circulation of the blood. He said in his report that Parr came to his death from nine months of high living at the King's table, who had invited him to the palace to learn the secret of his longevity. It was the life lived by John D. Rockefeller and Chauncey DePew, and the best way to make you well and strong. Try it.
A glad good-bye to 'Forty-five;
Let's thank the Lord that we're alive.
With Peace again we hope to thrive;
On better things our souls revive.
A welcome New Year, 'Forty-six!
May Father Time with his new tricks
Help get this world in better fix.
OCTOBER 23, 1945
"Well, good morning, Mr. Starr! Now, I wonder how you are. On the road to health and comfort have you gotten very far!"
"Yes, Doc, I am getting some better, but I just want to know if you can find out the cause of my trouble. They never could find anything wrong with me but arthritis."
"Well, Mr. Starr, in the first place you inherited a constitution that tends to metabolic diseases-what is known as rheumatism, or arthritis, if you prefer to call it that. The arthritis costs more money, and sounds a little bigger. But your natural constitution is behind both of them.
"In the second place, your glands are beginning to wear out, and your thyroid and sex glands are not functioning as they once did. Neither are you burning up the poisons that you should.
"In the third place, you are getting an infection through your nose, where most infections enter the system. Some- times they come from the prostate, the gall bladder or the appendix, and occasionally from the teeth and tonsils, but most frequently through the nose into the sinuses, and the germs are absorbed at night.
"The best thing you can do is to wash out your nose with Epsom salts solution, as I have told you, twice a day, to clear out the germs that are causing the trouble. A good many cases of rheumatism, however, are caused by 'flu' germs, colonic, or streptococcic germs, and about twenty per cent are due to brucellosis or undulant fever germs, as I have mentioned before. These cause much pain and sore- ness that move around over the body like ordinary arthritis, except that it does not confine itself to the joints, but frequently affects the muscles and tissues close to the joint.
"These conditions have to be treated by elimination through the bowels, and through the pores of the skin by baths; also by washing out the mucous membrane through which the germs are absorbed into the blood-that is, the sinuses by vaccines.
"Very few people past forty years of age have all their teeth or tonsils. If they have some of their teeth left, they are usually affected by pyorrhea. In case of infected teeth or tonsils, even after they are removed the patient is often a sufferer from rheumatism, neuritis, and kindred ills, just as he was before the operations. There ,is much to learn about the causes of these diseases, but science is making rapid strides."
In the meantime the itises keep showing up at Marlin.
Of rheumatism we hear at times,
More often of arthritis,
And people still are coming in
Complaining of neuritis;
But fashions change, we're finding out,
And now we seldom hear of gout.
NOVEMBER 3, 1945
I arose at six this morning and was on my way soon to Dallas, to attend a meeting of the advisory board of Southern Methodist University, which took place at 10 :30 A. M. J. W. Blanton of Dallas was chairman, the remainder of the board consisting of about twenty prominent men, members of the Methodist church, from all over Texas.
Mr. Blanton called on the Rev. Paul Quillian, pastor of the First Methodist Church of Houston, for an address. Dr. Quillian is chairman of the Scholarship Campaign, for the purpose of obtaining scholarships for ministers working their way through school. The Theology Department, as has been noted previously, is generously supported by Joe Perkins and his wife, who gave $1,300,000 a few months ago for that purpose.
Dr. Quillian emphasized the importance of assisting young men to acquire an education for the ministry. He agreed with General MacArthur, who stated in a radio address at the time of the recent surrender to the Allies, "We must have a revival of the spirit in order to save the flesh. This is our last chance. If we do not rally to make good this time, the Armageddon will be the next step-the destruction of civilization." He urged that all church people rally to this call and cooperate for the great cause of a spiritual revival throughout the world.
Dr. Lee, president of S. M. U., spoke in behalf of further development of the University. He stated that of the 2,400 students registered this year, 600 of them are returned veterans; 6,700 registered in '46.
Bishop Selecman spoke as a promoter of this Endowment campaign. He stressed the great importance of the undertaking and called on me to say something of my scholarship fund. I said that as a friend of Dr. Hyer I had caught his vision of a great university out on that hill with its Johnson grass, grassburrs and chiggers, in 1912.
I gave Dr. Boaz, now Bishop Boaz, one thousand dollars as one of the Founders' Club, just after we had finished our church and the Majestic Hotel in Marlin, and when I was still in debt $21,000. It required a strong faith, but I had it. Later I bought two lots from the Bishop and sold them, and invested the money in a loan fund which has been used by seventy-six students to date. Twenty-one of them have not paid theirs back. I changed it in June to a scholarship, and since coming here for this occasion I am giving $3,000 more in cash to make it a full scholarship.
I met Prof. S. H. Moore on a street car. He taught the Smith Brothers -not related to the cough drops - but the ones who made such fine bishops. On my way home I contacted Lieut. C. B. Malone of the Air Corps, a graduate of Methodist Home. He was pilot of a B-25, dropping bombs on Japanese vessels, and was never wounded, but had many holes shot in his plane. He told some very interesting experiences.
I love the joy of getting;
I love the joy of giving;
I like my flowers, these golden hours,
While I am with the living.
DECEMBER 6, 1945
This date carries my thoughts back to a corresponding date in a previous year. I am thinking, this morning, of December 6, 1943, when Mrs. Craven of Houston had the Pen Women of that city give me a banquet there, after I had delivered a lecture in the afternoon and had read a number of my poems. There were sixty people present at the banquet.
Dr. Marvin L. Graves gave a splendid talk on Friendship, mentioning our own long friendship and the work I had done for the State Medical Association and for humanitarian causes in various ways. He called attention to the fact that I had been vice president of the Medical Association three times but never had sought office; that I was chairman of important sections from time to time, and that I read an article before the Section of Internal medicine nearly every year for twenty years.
To return to the banquet: Mrs. Robert Jolly of the Memorial Baptist Hospital, had her girls sing a song I had written, "Grand Old Friendly Texas." It was beautifully rendered and well received.
This banquet was a complete surprise to me. At the close of my remarks in appreciation of the honor, I proposed a toast to Mrs. V. M. Craven, the poet, painter and musician:
Your head is in the heaven
With the skies of gorgeous blue
You see the angels smiling
With their star-eyes peeping through;
Your feet are in the flowers
With beauty, joy and mirth,
You paint God's love in pictures
Of heavenly things on earth.
Every day carries the joy of service. Mrs. Adams and her husband, formerly of Odom, Texas, but now of Fredericksburg, came in for a check-up. She was enthusiastic in telling me of her gratitude for what we had done for Mr. Adams, who was here as a patient in 1942. He came from Odom at that time, and she said he had been sick with fever for seventeen years, unable to get any relief. The fever would come at irregular times, undulant in type, with temperature running as high as 104, followed by drenching sweats. They knew his trouble was not malaria, but could not find out what caused it or how to check it.
The tests here showed that he had undulant fever, or brucellosis, of the chronic type. I gave him only two of the vaccines while he was here, and he has had no fever since that time, so his wife told me. The vaccine and the baths were the only treatments given.
We have had many similar cases since that time, but Mr. Adams was outstanding as additional evidence of the value of intradermal vaccine, he got large skin reactions. We were happy to see Mr. and Mrs. Adams again and they were very much pleased over their satisfactory check-up.
DECEMBER 31, 1945
My wonderful sister-in-law, Mrs. Oscar Torbett, invited us all out to her home for a feast on Christmas Day. The following were present in addition to our hostsess: My sister, Mrs. Ellen Cook, who is nearly eighty years of age, and just as spry in mind as you please; my grandniece, Mrs. Virginia Walters, and her husband, Homer; my sister- in-law, Mrs. Bert Torbett; my nephew, Oscar Lee Torbett, with his wife, Virginia, and son, Oscar Lee III; my niece, Mrs. Joy Torbett Cunningham, her husband, Earl, and little daughter, Frances Lee.
We had a delightful dinner, with turkey and all that goes with it, and some interesting conversation on timely topics, especially on the war, international government and possible world peace.
The following Sunday, December 30, my wife and I had the same party over at our home, a similar occasion which ended our Christmas season very quietly but joyously. However, Mrs. Oscar Lee Torbett was not present, as she was in the hospital with another little boy, Jon Ashby Torbett, just one day old.
And now, with the chronicling of the birth of the youngest Torbett in the family, I extend to him my best wishes for a long life and a useful one, with lasting peace and radiant health.
In publishing the foregoing notations, made "From Day to Day," it is my desire to give a close-up of my daily work and some of my outstanding patients whose experiences may be helpful to my readers in solving their own health problems.
From day to day
Time slips away
And steals our locks,
Or turns them gray;
But leaves behind
Our active mind
With golden mem'ries
(Pause for meditation.)
The late Professor Frederic Tilney said, "Only five per cent of the people really think and another five per cent think they think, and the remainder follow any sort of propaganda." If this book fails to make you think, it has missed its greatest mission, for the world needs straight thinking today.