Saturday, February 25, 2012

Adulterers Jailed; Patient Abuse; Infusorial Earth: Tidbits from the February 25, 1887 Ypsilanti Commercial

"Monthly meeting of Washtenaw Pomological society on the 5th of March, at 2 o'clock p.m. in the basement of the Court House at Ann Arbor. Report of committees on fruit factory, on infusorial* earth, on best and cheapest fruit packages, on statistics. Prof. J. B. Steere will lead in the discussion on noxious insects and insecticides."

"The Knights of Honor* up to this time have paid Mrs. James E. Lawrence $2,000, Mr. Lawrence being a member of the order when he died."

"John Girdler and Carrie Gill of Grand Rapids have been convicted of adultery. Girdler pleads hard to be allowed to suffer the full penalty alone, but the judge thought both should be punished, and sentenced Girdler to the state prison for one year, and Carrie Gill to the Detroit house of corrections for the same time."

"TORTURING PATIENTS. Extreme Cruelty Charged at the Soldiers' Home at Grand Rapids, Mich. LANSING, Mich.,--Some of the testimony given at the examination of the inmates of the Soldiers' home in Grand Rapids has been made public. The most damaging stories were related by Private Keyes and Baker. They swore that the principal nurse of the hospital--Sergt. Downs--so maltreated one of the inmates named Moore that he died the next morning. When the dying man objected to taking medicine, Downs said: "Take it, you d----- d----- ----- ----- -----, or I will throw you out of the window." The testimony shows that Downs jumped on Moore with his knees and forced obedience to his demands. Other specified instances of extreme cruelty are sworn to. One veteran swears that cayenne pepper was put in liniment in order to cause excruciating pain. Sick men were given icy baths. The testimony abounds in incidents in which the officials used profane and obscene language. Several of the subordinate officers admit to the profanity and try to justify it. The legislative committee says that these circumstances were unknown to the management."

--Ypsilanti Commercial, February 25 1887

*one of the innumerable fraternal orders of the era.

*diatomaceous, possibly used (as it still is) to deter insects by sprinkling on the ground around plants.

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