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The Nashville globe. (Nashville, Tenn.) 1906-193?, April 05, 1907, Image 1

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"All things come to them that wait, providing they hustle while they wait." Charl.es W. Anderson. . "Get out of our sunshine." R. H. Boyd.
No. 12.
u "v ; f - vara mm & h b
(An address delivered by Dr. C. A.
Terrell, oE Memphis, Tenn., before the
Alumni Association of Meharry Med
ical College, Nashville, Tenn., Friday,
March 29 1907.)
Mir. President, Ladies and Gentlemen
of the Meharry Alumni Association:
Words are inadequate in expressing
my appreciation to you for the honor
of appearing before you upon this oc
casion. The tribute of words that 1
gladly bring, and that you may take as
expressing the sentiments of your
brethren at large, necessarily begins
with congratulations that your associ
ation is composed of men and women
who were ushered Into this world just
a few days prior to, or shortly after
the abolition of slavery, which was
brought about by Christian men and
women who had the spirit of the Great
Phvsician within their hearts, and this
taught them, that it was a great curse
to allow human beings, thougn tney
ho Nee-roes .'to remain In servitude.
But congratulations must be mingled
with praise of the band of noble men,
the Meharrv Brothers, who materially
assisted in making this gathering pos
sible. The Meharry Boys furnished
the money, but who had the manhood
and broad heart enough to take it and
convert it into Medical, Surgical,
Pharmaceutical and Dental brains?
The answer is now an easy one, our
Tjeloved dean, Dr. G. W. Hubbard, who
has spent the greater part of his life
in educating Negro men and women
as physicians, surgeons, dentists, phar
macists and, last but not least, trained
nurses to minister to the urgent needs
of our race.
How well we have done, this can
easily be shown by the records of our
large cities wherein are found a great
number of our people. In the city of
Memphis, having a population of two
hundred thousands, fifty per cent be
ing Negroes, the death rate ten years
ago was three times as great as that
of the white race, during this period
the Increase of Negro physicians has
been from four to twenty-four, and the
death rate has decreased in proportion
to the increase of the presence of the
Negro physicians; so that now, the
weekly per cent of death rate is about
equally divided among both races. If
we can achieve so much without being
well organized, and having no hospital
advantages, what may be expected of
us when we will have succeeded in or
ganizing Negro medical societies and
building hospitals throughout the
south-land, where the doors of such
needful help are closed against us?
Tho medical society is designed,
(1) to lay a foundation for that unan
lminitv and friendship, which is essen
tial to the dignity and usefulness of
tho professional. (2) That in all cases
where counsel is requisite they will
assist each other without reserve. (3)
That they will communicate their ob
servations on the air, seasons, and
climate with such discoveries as they
may make In physics, surgery, botany
or chemistry; and deliver faithful his
toids of the various diseases incident
to the Inhabitants of this country,
with the mode of treatment and re
ults. With such objects in view we can
dily see the educational value of
medical society. There are many
ems.' and difficulties in the cduca
i. more difficult than the quos
' the general practitioner. Over
v we have some control, over
i r none. The university and
Lrd make It certain that the
)a minimum at least of pro
' knowledge, but who can be
it the state of that knowledge
her la five or ten years from
of his graduation? The spe
jiy be trusted to take care of
;the conditions of his exis
inand that ho shall be abreast
.lines, but the famiiy doctor,
ate in the great army, the es
ractor In the battle should be
nurtured by tho schools and
I guarded by tho public,
iff m-miM
fit ' .Vt-;'j'-i-;:;',Ms
II . ' m m
Proprietor of the Terrell-Patterson Infirmary, Memphis.
Humanly speaking with .him are
the Issues of life and death, since upon
him fall the grevious responsibility in
those terrible emergencies which
bring darkness and despair to so many
households. No class of men need to
call to mind more often the wise com
ment of Plato; that "education Is a
life long business." The difficulties
are partly adherent to the subject,
partly have to do with the individual
and his weakness. The problems of
disease are more difficult than any
others with which the trained mind
has to graplc, the conditions in any
given case may be unlike those in any
other, each case indeed may have its
own problem. Law constantly looking
back, has its forms and procedures,
its precedents and practices. Once
grasped the certainties of divinity
make its study a delight and its prac
tice a past-time; but who can tell of
the uncertainties of medicine as an
art? The science upon which it is
based is accurate and definite enough;
tho physics of a man's circulation are
the physics of the water works of the
town in which he lives, but once out
of geair you can not apply the same
rule for the repair of the one as of
the other. Variability is the law of
life and as no two faces are the same,
so no two bodies are alike, and no
two individuals react alike, and be
have alike, under the abnormal con
ditions which we know as disease.
This is the fundamental difficulty -in
the education of the physician, and
one. which he may never grasp, or he
takes it so tenderly that it hurts in
stead of boldly accepting tho axiom of
Bishop Butler, more true of medicine
than any other profession, "Probility
is tho guide of life." Surrounded by
people who demand certainty and not
philosopher enough to agree with
Locko that "Probility supplies the de
fect of our knowledge and guides
us when that fails, and Is always con
versant about things of which we have
no certainty."
Listen to the appropriate comments
of the father of medicine, who twenty
live centuries ago had not only
grasped the fundamental conception
of our art as one based on observa
tion, but had labored also through
a long life to give to the profession
which ho loved the saving health -of
science; listen. I say. to words of his
famous aphorism: "Experience is fal
lacious and- judgment difficult."
But the more serious problem re
lates to the education of the practi
tioner after he has left the schools.
The foundation may not have been
laid upon which to erect an intellec
tual structure and too often the man
starts with, a, total misconception of
tho prolonged struggle necessary to
keep the education he has, to say
nothing of bettering the instructions
of the schools. ;
As the practice of medicine Is not
a business, and can never be one, the
education of the heart, the moral side
of man, must keep pace with the edu
cation of the head. Our fellow crea
tures can not be dealt with as men in
corn and coal; the human heart by
which we live must control our profes
sional relations; after all the persona
equation ha3 most to do with our sue
cess of failure in medicine, and in the
trials of life the fire which strength
ens and tempers the metal of one may
osften and ruin the other. For bet
ter or worse there lire few occupations
of a more satisfying character than
the practice of medicine, if a man
can but onco bring to it the phi
losophy of honest work, the philoso
phy which insists that we are here
not to get all we can out of life about
us, but to see how much we can add to
it. The discontent and grumblings
which one hears have their source In
the man more often than in his envl
vonment. In the nature of the ma
terial in which we labor and of which
by the way, we are pertakers, there
is much that could be improved, but
we accept men as the Lord made them
and not expect too much. But let me
say this of the public, it Is rarely re
sponsible for the failures In the pro
fession. Occasionally a man of su
perlatlve merit is neglected, but it is
because he lacks that most essentia
gift, the knowledge how to use his
The failure in 99 per cent of the
cases is in the man himself, he 'has
not started right, the poor chap has
not had the choice of his parents or
his education has been faulty, or he
has fallen awray to the worship of
strange gods Baal or, worse still
Bacchus. But after all the killing
vice of the young doctor Is intel
lectual laziness; he may have worked
hard at college but the years of pro
bation have been his ruin. Without
specific subjects upon which to work
he gets the newspaper Or the nove
habit and Hitters his energies upon
useless literature. There is no great
er test of a man's strength than to
make him "mark time" in the stand
and wait years. Habits of systematic
leading aro rare and are becoming
more rare, and five or ten years from
his license, as practice bocins to grow
may find ihe young doctor knowing
less than he did when he started and
without a fixed educational purpose in
life. Now hero is where the medical
society may step in and prove hi?
salvation. The doctor's post graduate
education conies from patients, from
books and journals, and from societies
which should bo supplemented every
five or six years by a return, to a post
graduate school to get rid of an almost
inevitable slovenliness in methods of
We should strive in our societies to
lay a. foundation for unity and friend
ship, which Is essential to the dignity
and usefulness of the profession. Yes,
unity and friendship. How we all long
for them! but how difficult to attain.
Strife seems rather to be the very
life of the practitioner, whose warfare
is incessant against disease, and
against Ignorance and prejudice, and
sad to have to admit, he too often lets
his angry passions rise against his
professional brother. The quarrelB of
doctors make a pretty chapter In the
history of medicine.
When science has fully leavened the
dough of homoeopathy the great breach
of our day will be healed. But in too
many towns and smaller communities
miserable factions prevail and bicker
ings and Jealousies mar the dignity
and usefulness of the piofession. So
far as my observation goes, the fault
lies with the older men, and right here,
my professional brethren, is the cry
ing need of medical, dental, pharma
ceutical and nurse traimng societies
to cement and hold us together, for
in union there Is great strength. The
meeting is a friendly, social way to lead
to a free and open discussion of differ
ences in a spirit that refuses to recog
nize differences of opinion on the non
essentials of life as the cause of per
sonal animosity or ill teeling. An at
titude of mind . habitually friendly,
more particularly to the young man,
even though you feel him to be the
David to whom your kingdom may
fall, a little of the old fashion courtesy
which makes a man shrink from
wounding the feeling of a brother
practitioner, in honor pieferring one
another, with such a spirit abroad in
the society and among its older men;
there Is no reason for any hatred, mal
ace or any uncharltableucss. It Is the
confounded tales of patients that so
often set us by the ears, but if a man
makes it a rule never under any cir
cumstances to believe a story told by
a patient to the detriment of a fellow
practitioner, even if he knows It to be
true; though the measure he metes
may not be measured to him again, he
will have the satisfaction of knowing
that he has closed the ears of his soul
to 99 lies, and the hundredth truth
will not hurt him.
Most of the quarrels of doctors are
about non-essentials, miserable tri
fles and annoyances the pinprick of
practice, which would some times try
the patience of Job, but the good fel
lowship and friendly intercourse of the
medical society should reduce those
to a minimum. The well conducted
medical society should represent a
clearing house, In which every pbysi
clan of the district would receive, his
intellectual rating, and in which he
could find out his professional assets,
and liabilities. Wo doctors do ! not
take stock often enough, and are very
apt to carry on our shelves stale, out
of date goods. The society helps to
keep a man up to the times, and en
ables him to refurnish his mental sho
with the latest waxes. Rightly useu
It may be a touch-stone to which he
can bring his experiences to the test
and save him from following In the rut
of a few sequences. It keeps his mind
open, and receptive and counteracts
that tendenoy to premature senility,
which Is apt to overtake, a man who
lives in a routine. After receiving 'our
medical education In the different col
leges of the country, whose doors are
not closed in our faces, and every
month or two we strengthen our medl
cal assets, by meeting together and
exchanging ideas and thoughts, we at
last find ourselves handicapped ; for the
majority of the hospitals in the. South
land are either closed to us or our
patients and most assuredly to our
Can it then be said that we do not
need hospitals? As a race we are
well supplied with churches, and part
ly so with schools, but we are sadly in
need of modern up to date hospitals,
wherein we can give our patients the
best surgical, to say nothing about the
medical treatment that each individual
case may demand. This is not the
only reasons why we should build hos
pitals, and help those that are already
struggling for existence. It opens the
way for the women of our race to be
come trained nurses, and earn a spleu
did living In having a vocation in
which each must lead a busy, useful
and happy life, more you cannot ex
pect, a great blessing, the world can
not bestow. Busy you will certainly
be, as the demand Is great both in pri
vate and public for women of your
training: useful your lives must be. as
you will care for those who can
not care for themselves, and who
need about them, in the day of tribula
tlon, gentle hands and tender hearts
Fellow-workers, since our mission Is
that of dealing with the sick, and suf
(Continued on PAge 5.)
' I
The thirty-first annual com
mencement exercises of Meharrv
Medical ..College were held at the
yman Auditorium last; Friday
uight March 29. The I occasion
was one long to be remembered In
Nasnvnie. it marked an epoch in hls-
ory, making, so far as the medical,
iental and pharmaceutical denart-
ments of this University are con
cerned, a lasting impression upon all.
There went out Into the world ninety-
nx graduates, who, have labored for
ihe pa?t three and four years to win
She diplomas which were Dresented to
them on Friday night. '
The Processional March "Canabas"
')y R. IL Hall, was played by the Uni
versity orchestra. Prom ntlv at 7:30
n. m. the long line of graduates filed
lown the center aisle of the audito
rium, made a circle In front of the
stage, turned to the left' and took
their seats on the platform, arranged
lust behind the . President Dean and
speaker for the occasion.
A Chorus, "There is Joy" from the
"Prodigal Son" (Sullivan) was sung
by the Choral Society, before an audi
ence that completely filled the fepac
'ous auditorium. Dr. George W.' Hub
bard, Dean and founder, of . this great
Institution, called - the house : to order
ind in a few modest words invited the
audience to stand while Dr. R. H. Boyd
offered prayer, which he did In' that
earnest, simple form of speech which
Is so characteristic of him.
Chorus with solo, "The Miller's Woo
ing" (Faning) by the Choral Society.
Mr. Landry, Mr. Walker and Miss Rob
erts were heartily applauded. So pro
longed was the encore that they were
forced to render another selection. Dr.
Hubbard then arose and said, "We are
about to present to you to-night the
largest medical class ever turned out
from Meharry Medical College. The
class numbers about one hundred.
They come from nearly every state in
the Union, from British Honduras,
which is In Central America, West In
dies and other points. This will make
the total number sent out into the
rofesslonal world from Meharry about
me thousan. It is with pleasure that
we make the statement to-night, that
Meharry has furnished to the colored
people a majority of all the medical
graduates turned out from the. schools
for the race. This class1 promises
greater achievements than'any bf its
predecessors." These remarks rwere
received with treraenoua applause
from the audience.
Tho salutatory by C. R. Verwood, of
Texas, on the "Moral Duty of the Phy
slcial," was timely, ' Instructive and
well rendered. He covered a scope
along moral lines, which to his class,
as well as those In the audience, should
be followed verbatim. It was an earn
est appeal for the moral uplifting of
the medical profession, showing the
many high and worthy duties to be
performed In this work.' ' " v
The pharmaceutical , valedictory was
by W. T. Durroh, of Tennessee, on
'Pharmacy as Related to Medicine."
He showed in a well prepared address
the rapid strides made by the pharma
ceutical graduates and the various as
sociations organized In recent years,
and the assistance they had been to
the druggists and the doctors. He made
a passionate appeal to his class and
his hearers for renewed ambition.
"The Drum" by S. Archer Gibson,
was rendered by the Glee Club, which
elicited an encore from the vast crowd.
Then G. D. 'Smith, of South Carolina,
tho dental valedictorian.1 discussed
"Dentistry In the Field With Medi
cine." Hardly had he begun his mas
terly address before the audience wa9
with him In seeing the advantages to
be derived from competent v dentists.
So plain did he, make his argument
that at the conclusion of each sen
tence, he grew more enthused, taking
on more eloquence as he proceeded.
The last address on behalf of tho
class was delivered b'yW. H. Byaa,

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