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A transcript of articles taken from the Launceston

Examiner

by
Josie Andrews
2002

The Examiner 23rd September, 1887


SMALL-POX OUTBREAK
QUARANTINE ESTABLISHED
FURTHER CASES DEVELOPED
The apprehensions mentioned in our last issue that an
outbreak of small-pox had occurred in Launceston, have
proved to be well founded, and the news fell on the town like
a thunderclap, and the publicity given to the matter led in
the course of Saturday forenoon to the Local Board receiving
the pronounced professional and independent opinions of
Doctors Cotterell and Gutteridge as to the disease being
unquestionably small-pox.
The particulars are that about a fortnight ago Dr. Murphy was
called in to see a married woman named Mrs Blanchflower, in
Lower George-street, who, with her child, was supposed to be
suffering from chicken-pox or measles, but which the doctor
did not evidently consider of a serious infectious nature, as
we believe he did not report the case. Eight or nine days ago
Dr Pike, as the doctor of the friendly society to which the man
belonged was called in to attend a man named Watson living
next door to Mrs. Blanchflower. Dr. Pike was also called in to
attend a woman named Pearson, living in Briants Lane (off
William-street west), who had been washing clothes
belonging to Mrs. Blanchflower and who, with her father, an
elderly man who resided in her house, suffered from similar
symptoms to the man Watson. Dr. Pike reported these cases
(Watsons on the 19th and Pearsons on the 22nd inst.) to the
sanitary department as measles, but in the course of his
subsequent visits suspicions that had been aroused as to the
more serious nature of infection were strengthened, and he
consulted with Dr. Hallowes on Friday last, both gentlemen
agreeing that by some at present unknown means, the dread
contagion of small-pox had been introduced into the town.
The result was that Drs. Pike and Hallowes went to the
residence of the Sanitary Officer (Mr Bushman), on Friday
evening about ten oclock, and Dr Pike withdrew his

certificate of measles and replaced it by written ones


certifying to the disease in the cases under his treatment as
small-pox.
Mr Bushman at once communicated with the Superintendent
of Police, and ordered the isolation of the infected houses.
Although Mr Bushman had no proper notification of the cases
now known in Blanchflowers and Bishops residences, he
ordered, on his own authority, these as well as Watsons and
Pearsons to be isolated and this took place between ten and
eleven oclock on Friday evening. Constables were placed in
charge of each of the infected houses to prevent any of the
occupants leaving, or unauthorised persons entering, and
watch has since been maintained by them day and night.
Official Action
Various consultations were held during Saturday forenoon
between the Mayor (as chairman of the Hospital Board (Mr. G.
T. Collins), various medical men, and the Sanitary Officer.
The members of the Local Board of Health were summoned
about 11 oclock, and all the available aldermen were
present, as well as the chairman of the Hospital Board. The
Chief Secretary and the Central Board of Health at Hobart
were put in communication by wire, the Sanitary Officer
pressing for the immediate erection of a temporary hospital.
Authority was also requested for the isolation of the infected
dwellings and for the appointment of medical men to take
charge of the patients at their residences and at the hospital
when erected. At the meeting the chairman of the Hospital
Board consented to allow the wooden structures in charge of
the board to be used for the purpose of a temporary hospital.
Pending sanction from Hobart instructions were given to Mr.
H. T. Russell, builder, of York-street, to dismantle the structure
intended as a leper hospital and erected in the premises
attached to the residence of the surgeon-superintendent,
and remove these with the framework of another structure
for erection on the plot of land secured some time ago at

Glen Dhu for the purposes of an invalid depot. Under the


energetic direction of Mr. H. N. Taylor, Inspector of Public
Works, Mr Russell secured a large staff of willing workmen,
and operations were commenced during the afternoon, and
were carried on until past dark notwithstanding the bad
weather. The sloping nature of the ground required some
excavation, and as it transpired, caused a fortunate delay.
Our Hobart correspondent telegraphed on Saturday: - The
intelligence of the outbreak of small-pox in Launceston was
received here to-day with considerable surprise and no small
amount of consternation. A hurriedly summoned meeting of
the Central Board of Health was held at 2 p.m. at the
residence of Dr. Perkins, president of the board. Telegrams
sent to the Chief Secretary by the Mayor of Launceston and
the chairman of the Hospital Board were read, and upon
them some discussion ensued. On the motion of Mr. J.H.B.
Walch, seconded by Mr. H. Hunter, it was decided to appoint
the Mayor of Launceston and the Sanitary Inspector (Mr. J.G.
Bushman) under section 70 of the Public Health Act, to limit
and prevent ingress, egress, or regress, of any persons to or
from such places as were found to be affected, the president
being empowered to specify such localities.
Dr. Hardy
remarked that it was proposed to erect two wooden small-pox
hospitals at Glen Dhu, which was really within the town
boundary. He thought that would be very injudicious, and
that a suitable site should be chosen outside of the bounds of
the town on Pig Island, for instance. The president agreed,
and promised to bring the matter under the Premiers notice.
It was decided to ask the Launceston Local Board to keep the
Central Board informed several times daily as to the
condition of affairs, etc, there, and the president was
authorised to communicate, on receipt of definite
information, the fact of the outbreak to the boards of health
in the neighboring colonies. The subject of a more rigorous
enforcement of the Vaccination Act gave rise to some
observations, the members being of pinion that such was
desirable, but no definite motion was formulated. Later on
Ministers met in Cabinet, and, in answer to a telegram from

the chairman of the Launceston Hospital Board, ordered a


message to be wired directing him to select a suitable site for
the hospital, disregarding Glen Dhu, and if possible choose
one about a mile away from any human habitation, also to
establish a night and day cordon around the isolated
buildings. At 4 p.m. an Executive meeting was held at
government House, and an order was made empowering
Mayor Carter and Inspector Bushman, under section 79 of
the Health Act, to take the necessary steps to isolate Traills
house in Lower George-street and the house in Briants Row
where the outbreak of small-pox occurred.
Temporary Hospitals and Quarantine Ground
After instructions had been received from the Government
the selection of a suitable site and establishment of a
quarantine station had to be promptly dealt with by the
Mayor, Mr Collins, and Mr. Bushman, but we may state that
their labours had been greatly facilitated by the prompt
acquiescence of the Chief Secretary to all requests, and the
carte blanche given to do everything considered necessary.
Two or three localities in the vicinity of the Punchbowl and
Glen Dhu were visited, and Dr. Thompson then suggested the
vicinity of Mowbray or Newnham. Mr. Collins telegraphed to
Mr. W.C. Grubb at St. Leonards, and Mr Grubb came into town
early in the evening to meet Mr. Collins, who solicited
permission to use a portion of the Mowbray race-course for
the quarantine station. Mr Grubb said although his valuable
stud sheep were at present down lambing on the estate, yet
he would consider human life before anything else, and
would most willingly grant permission for the erection of the
cottage hospitals, etc. on the desired site. Thus empowered
to act, Mr. Collins at once communicated with Mr. H.N. Taylor,
Superintendent of Public Works, and instructed him to
abandon the Glen Dhu site, and to start at daylight on
Sunday morning, and have all the material for buildings
carted out to Mowbray. At nine oclock yesterday morning
the Mayor, Mr. Collins, Mr. Grubb, Mr. Taylor, and Dr.
Thompson went out and selected the most suitable site,

which is near the grandstand, and within a few yards of the


saddling paddocks, more to the west, and including the
ground where the wooden erections stand which are used for
booths during the race meetings. It is outside a half-mile
radius from any human habitation, the nearest place being
Mr. S. C. Sadlers residence. Mr. H.T. Russell, builder, of Yorkstreet, who is the Government contractor, and supplied all
the building material required, started with his men out to
Mowbray at 7 a.m. yesterday, and at 9 oclock they had a
large portion of the material out there, and as soon as the
site was selected they started to work on the buildings, and
progressed very satisfactorily. The first temporary hospital is
the one above referred to as having previously been in use in
the hospital grounds. The first work was to cover the
basement of intended hospitals with asphalt in order to
prevent damp striking up, an ample supply being obtained
from the Corporation yards, where a large stock of material
usually lies mixed ready for use. This was put on fully a foot
thick, and besides acting as a disinfectant, it will prevent
moisture from rising and injuring the patients. Uprights were
then erected, and the building being in sections it was very
soon put together. It is very well ventilated, and to admit of
more ventilation is raised fully three feet off the ground, the
space between the floor and the ground being quite open. It
is a shapely house, almost square, measuring 21ft. by 18ft.
The second building is similar in construction but it will be
entirely built of tongued and grooved boards. It is on the
same principle as the other house, the asphalt having been
laid down the same, and it is of equal dimensions. The old
booths, which measure 30ft. by 21ft., and of which there are
four, will all be utilised, and are within a few yards of the
cottage hospitals, thus making one continuous row of
buildings which will facilitate the work of the doctor and
attendants. The floors of the booths, which outwardly are
very sound, were yesterday covered with asphalt to a great
depth, and they will be lined with scrim to make them more
comfortable. The two cottage hospitals will be utilised for
male and female patients respectively. The first three booths
will be occupied by the suspected patients, whilst the last

one, that nearest the grandstand, will be the quarters of the


doctor and nurses.
The men worked all last night in
preparing the buildings, the work being carried on by lamplight, fortunately aided by the moon.
Water was laid on yesterday under the supervision of Mr. J.
McElwee. Fortunately the pipes had been previously been
laid on as far as the entrance to the race-course, and they
had, therefore, only to be continued from that point.
The telephone which is on the grandstand will be connected
with the doctors residence, and persons requiring
information can readily obtain it.
The arrangements for the comfort of the patients are being
ably carried out. An order for five tons of coal and six tons of
wood was given to Messrs. Sidebottom and Son yesterday,
and during the day this was carted out to the site. Stoves
will be provided, and lamps and candles for lighting
purposes. All the beds and bedding will be prepared at the
hospital.
Earth closets have been provided, but every
necessary convenience will be erected.
The persons placed in quarantine from the infected houses
will be allowed a fair amount of latitude, but they will not be
allowed to enter or approach the saddling paddocks,
grandstand, or course, and no one will be allowed without the
prescribed circle, which will be the boundary fence in which
the cottage hospitals are enclosed. The Superintendent of
the Selby Police, Mr. R. Armstrong, will have charge of the
enforcement of regulations and isolation of the quarantine
station.
It is expected the buildings will be ready for admitting the
patients during the morning, and no time will be lost in their
removal. The work of conveyance will be in the ambulance
wagon which arrived a short time since for the Launceston
Hospital. The wagon was built by Mr. E.C.A. Nicholls, of
Hobart, and is a lightly constructed vehicle. It runs on four

wheels, and resembles very much an ordinary wagonette,


weighing about half a ton. Inside it is fitted with an iron
sliding stretcher and two seats, which will accommodate two
attendants besides the patient. The wagon can be made,
however, to carry as many as nine people, that is provided
they can all sit up in it, and it is expected that two journeys
to the quarantine ground to-day with the patients will be
ample. It will be drawn by horses, and the driver upon
terminating his work will be disinfected. The stretcher in the
wagon can be taken out, the patient placed on it, and put
back into the vehicle without any trouble or inconvenience
whatsoever.
As soon as the disease has been stamped out all the
buildings used on the racecourse will be burned, together
with the clothing, etc., used. Mr Grubbs interests will not
suffer, nor will the interests of the Tasmanian Turf Club be
affected.
The Infected Houses
In accordance with instructions given by the Sanitary Officer
to the Superintendent of Police, four infected houses were
isolated, and placed under surveillance. All means of ingress
and egress were prevented by a staff of policemen, who
commenced duty during Friday night, and were relieved at
stated intervals.
No communication of any kind was
permitted, except, of course, that the necessaries of life were
conveyed to the inmates through the medium of the police.
Two of the four residences are those occupied by the families
of Watson and Blanchflower, and are under one roof. They
are two-storey houses, and are situate in Traills-lane, in
Lower George-street, a right-of-way exactly opposite the
offices of the Tasmanian Steam Navigation Company.
Watsons dwelling is nearest to the street. In this house at
the time of being isolated was the deceased man Watson, his
wife (now affected), a baby in arms, and a female
professional nurse.
In Blanchflowers residence are the

husband, who as yet has not developed any signs; Mrs.


Blanchflower, who has had a mild attack of the disease; three
children, all of whom are suffering more or less seriously, and
a nurse, also attacked.
Round the corner in William-street, close to Boag and Sons
brewery, and on the same side, is a block of two brick houses
of two storeys; one is occupied by Mr. Boag, and the one
isolated and nearest George-street is tenanted by Mr. William
Bishop as a lodging house. Mr. Bishop removed here quite
recently, after giving up the Temperance Hotel, which he
carried on for years on the wharf. In this house the cases are
Mr. Bishop (who, as Dr. Cotterell states, is sickening for the
disease), Mrs. Bishop (who is recovering from a mild attack),
and their son, who has manifested the complaint. The other
inmates of the house are a female servant and eight or nine
male lodgers. Some of these are employed in various
situations in town, at Gunn Brothers, Irvine and McEacherns,
the Government railway workshops, etc, and they were
considerably amazed on rising on Saturday morning to find
themselves prohibited leaving the house. No doubt they
found the enforced retirement to be extremely irksome, but
we are informed they have conducted themselves in a most
praiseworthy manner.
The fourth infected house is situated in Briants Row, off
William-street, a right of way near to Lower Charles-street,
and close to the Volunteer Buildings. It is one of a long row of
poor, one-storey wooden tenements and was occupied when
isolated by Mrs. Pearson, who is a washerwoman, her two
children by a former husband, a boy 10 years of age and a
girl aged eight years, and an elderly man, Mrs. Pearsons
father. All these except the boy have been attacked with
disease, the more serious case being that of the girl, who is
at present dangerously ill. The husband is employed on the
s.s. Linda as fireman. As some complaint was made that the
isolation regulations were operating cruelly in not affording
facilities for obtaining food, the Sanitary Officer visited each
residence.
He found that the inmates were generally

satisfied, although a request for beer at one residence was


refused. A liberal supply of food of various kinds was sent to
Mrs. Watsons house yesterday morning, supplied by a friend
from the Coffee Palace.
With one exception all the inmates in the residence of Mr.
Joseph Blanchflower are or have been sick. The husband is a
tin smith, employed at Mr. McElwees shop in Brisbane-street,
near the Firebell Tower. He is well at present, although
isolated with the sick family. Mrs. Blanchflower was the first
of the known patients to manifest the disease which
commenced in her case some six or eight weeks ago. Mrs.
Blanchflower is a daughter of Mrs. W Bishop and during her
sickness was attended by her mother.
Mrs. Bishop, it
appears, removed her daughters clothes to her own
residence to wash, and it is thus easy to account for the
connection with the epidemic in the two households. Mrs.
Blanchflower has recovered, but bears the marks on her face
of the effects of the disease. During yesterday their two
elder children were considered bad, and the baby was just
showing symptoms. The nurse-girl too, has the infection, but
in a modified form.
It seems that the family of the Watsons consists of husband,
wife, and three children.
The eldest child is away in
Melbourne; the second, a boy just under two years of age, Dr.
Pike ordered to be taken away, and he is staying with Mrs
White, a relative in Frederick-street, between Bathurst and
Margaret streets. This child was taken ill yesterday, and Dr.
Pike was requested to see it, the child being sickly, though
not showing marks. The youngest is a baby in arms, and
with its mother is in the isolated house. Nathaniel Watson, a
man just turned thirty years of age, was the youngest son of
the late Samuel Watson, who kept a drapers shop in
Elizabeth-street, on the premises where Mr. George Castley
has an ironmongery business. Watson was employed for
seven years at Mr. Alfred Harraps grain store in Lower
George-street, and last Wednesday week, the 14th inst.,
complained of feeling unwell; he was affected with head-

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ache and pains, and thought he had got the prevailing fog
fever, but there was no manifest definite ailment, and he
was told by Mr. Harrap to lay up at home for a day or two.
Watson got worse, and was confined to is bedroom during the
illness of ten days. He belonged to the Manchester Unity
Order of Oddfellows, and his lodge doctor, Dr. Pike, was called
in. On Friday evening Dr. Pike sent a professional nurse, Mrs.
Clarke, who has had small-pox, and is available for service,
who it seems had some apprehension that the complaint was
not of an ordinary character, for she expressed surprise that
persons should be allowed to see the dying man. It appears
that the family had no idea of the serious nature of the
complaint up to late on Friday evening, for the Rev. A.
Barkway paid a ministerial visit about 9 oclock.
The deceased was visited by his brother, Mr. Sam Watson,
who is a cab-driver, residing in Frederick-street, near the
Infant School, all through his illness, and until 8 oclock on
the evening of Friday He says he was astounded at the
peculiar symptoms developed by the disease and the terrible
eruptions on the flesh his whole body, from the top of his
head to the tips of his fingers, was swollen and covered with
what he describes as raised pulps and thought it was far
more serious than was alleged by the doctor. The deceased
was rational and conscious to the last, though at times his
mind wandered and he became delirious. He suffered much
from want of sleep, but stated he had no pain. The brother
states that on Friday morning he had notice from the Sanitary
Officer to disinfect the premises, and between eleven oclock
and noon he took disinfectants and some carbolic soap to the
house, and that was the first intimation Mrs. Watson had that
there was any possible infection, for the deceaseds clothes
had, up to that time, been washed with the rest of the
familys. Mrs. Watson was the sole attendant on her husband
until the arrival of the nurse on Friday evening. It is very
lamentable, although it can scarcely wondered at, that in Dr.
Gutteridges opinion the poor woman has contracted the
disease. Mrs. Watson, however, was well yesterday up to a
late hour, and the house is considered by the authorities at

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present free. The inmates were badly off for bedding, Mrs.
Watson and the nurse having to sleep in chairs, but a supply
was sent to the house yesterday by a brother of the
deceased. Watson died about 3 oclock on Saturday morning,
and orders for his interment as speedily as possible were
given to Mr. D. Storrer, undertaker, St John-street, and all
necessary precautions for disinfection being taken, the
funeral left the house at 4.30 p.m. for the Church of England
Cemetery. The hearse was followed by several male relatives
and friends of the deceased and by Mr. George E. Harrap, the
latter being desirous of testifying his great respect for the
late employee of the firm. The last solemn rites were
performed by the Rev. A. Barkway. Except the incidental
money which will be paid by the lodge, the family, we
believe, are totally unprovided for. Mrs. Watsons relations
are all in Melbourne. It is a pleasure to record the kind
attention which has been paid by Mr. Alfred Harrap and his
son (Mr. G.E. Harrap) to Watson and his family during the
fatal illness to which Watson succumbed. Through their
kindness he was enabled to have expensive stimulants
administered when they were the only means of relieving the
disease and sustaining strength. It appears, however, that
Watson was fully deserving of the kindly attention paid by his
employer. He was their head storeman and had all the store
department under his control. The Messrs. Harrap speak in
the highest terms of the deceased as a fine, sterling young
man. He was steady, sober, and industrious, performed his
duties most satisfactorily, and enjoyed their fullest
confidence.
In Mrs Pearsons home there are four inmates Mrs. Pearson,
aged about thirty, her boy by a previous marriage, aged ten,
and a daughter aged 6, named Spiers. Besides these there is
Mrs. Pearsons father, an old man named Hawkins. Pearson,
the husband, states that a fortnight ago his wife took some
washing from the Blanchflowers, which included some
bedclothes. After doing her work she felt ill, and kept her bed
for several days, Dr. Pike attending her. She had pains in her
head and red spots on the legs, but no eruption on the face.

12

She took medicine and got all right. Hawkins then became
ill, and at times was delirious and could not be kept in bed,
although he is now better. The girl then became ill, being
delirious also, and is now in a critical condition; in fact, her
case is considered hopeless. This case forcibly illustrates the
hardship under which the woman Pearson has laboured.
Hardly convalescent from a weakening illness, she has had
the care of two delirious patients, and this to a delicate
woman has proved intensely trying. On Friday last Mrs.
Pearson seemed to have a suspicion that the disease of the
girl was something more serious than they had understood,
and she told her husband he had better sleep on board the
s.s. Linda, where he is fireman; he did so, and so escaped
being isolated. Pearson complains bitterly of the delay which
had occurred in rendering assistance.
At present Mrs.
Pearson and the boy are free from any symptoms of smallpox attack. If it proves to be this disease from which the girl
and the old man Hawkins are suffering it will forcibly
illustrate a point of contention. Hawkins and the girl have
not been vaccinated, and have caught some disease in a
severe, perhaps fatal, form. Mrs. Pearson and the boy have
both been vaccinated; she threw off the attack and is better,
and the boy has not been touched. On enquiry late last night
we found that the girl was still in the same condition and
cannot be removed today.
Mr and Mrs. Bishop and boy are prostrate with small-pox and
are considered to be going through the stages satisfactorily.
They are confined to the upper rooms of the house, whilst the
lodgers are isolated below.
Dr. Pike on Friday night transferred his patients to Dr. Stewart
until further notice, and has isolated himself from his family.
With great consideration Dr. Pike voluntarily visited the
sufferers on Saturday and yesterday and will continue to
attend the patients not fit to be removed to the hospital until
some formal appointment is made. It is patent that two
medical men are needed in the emergency, one is appointed

13

Dr. Pardey for the small-pox hospital and one to supervise


the town patients.
Medical Officers
As it would seem from our Hobart telegrams that some
medicos at the capital doubt the disease being small-pox we
may give some independent opinions of medical men with a
wide experience of this disease. Dr. Gutteridge stated to our
representative that for his own satisfaction, and in the
interests of the public he had visited on Saturday afternoon
the residences of Watson and Blanchflower, two of the
isolated dwellings.
The disease of small-pox had three
phases, said the doctor, the discreet when the spots were
distinct but isolated; the semi-confluent, when the pustulous
partly run; and the confluent when the matter issues from all
the pustules. Unquestionably the deceased man Watson had
developed the disease in the last stage, the confluent, or the
worst form. He (Dr. Gutteridge) had apprehension that Mrs.
Watson also had caught the infection. With respect to the
inmates at Blanchflower's, he said that Mrs. Blanchflower had
experienced a mild attack of small-pox, but that she had
practically got over it, and would pull through. The marks of
the pustules, however, were distinct on her face. Her boy,
seven years of age, had evidently contracted the disease in a
more acute form, the pustules being pronounced, and they
were accompanied by a running which affected his eyes. He,
too, was getting better, and in that household he thought no
serious danger need be apprehended. Dr. Gutteridge stated
the preliminary symptoms of having contracted the disease
were pains in the back and vomiting. The disease took
twelve days to incubate, but it might be detected after the
third day had run. Dr. Gutteridge firmly believes in the virtue
of vaccination, and states that if it is successfully effected
during the first three days of the attack it will render a person
safe from disastrous consequences. But speaking from an
experience gained in England he strongly urged vaccination
as a preventive. He was House Surgeon in the Birmingham
Hospital during a small-pox scourge in 1883-84, and had

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personal contact with all phases of the disease. The returns


of the small-pox hospital in London specially set apart for the
reception and treatment of this dreadful disease showed the
mortality rate of these previously vaccinated to be seven per
cent; those having good vaccine scars, three per cent; and
those not vaccinated, thirty seven per cent. With respect to
mortality in relation to the virulence of the disease, four per
cent died at the discreet stage, eight per cent at the semiconfluent, and fifty per cent at the confluent. And as to the
effect on age; under five years the mortality was fifty per
cent; over thirty years of age it was still higher, while the
lowest rate of mortality was found between the ages of five
years and twenty years. He believed that vaccination would
render a subject practically safe for seven years.
Dr.
Gutteridge expressed his surprise that a disease which was
so marked in its symptoms and so pronounced in its
character had not been acutely detected and reported to the
authorities in its earlier stages. He intimated that he had
received during Saturday and yesterday several applications
from persons desiring to be re-vaccinated. He had wired to
Melbourne for vaccine lymph, and expected to have a supply
tomorrow (Tuesday).
Dr Cotterell stated to our reporter that he, too, in the
interests of the public, and with the sanction of the local
board, had visited three of the isolated residences viz,
those of Watson, Blanchflower, and Bishop. He had extensive
knowledge of the disease in its various forms from a lengthy
experience gained in small-pox hospitals in England, and
subsequently in New Zealand and Sydney. Dr. Cotterell
ridiculed the idea of the complaint contracted by the patients
in these houses as being chicken-pox.
That infection
developed mainly in other portions of the body, and did not
affect the face, as did small-pox. In the case of the deceased
man Watson, whose body he viewed on Saturday, and whose
face was one mass of pustules, he pronounced it to be a very
bad specimen of the confluent phase of the infection. The
deceased man Watson must have exhibited the disease for
nine days prior to his death, and how the medical attendant

15

could overlook this fact was beyond his comprehension. Of


the two children at Blanchflowers he considered that one
had the complaint in a bad, though possibly not a fatal form,
but the other was recovering from a milder attack. Mrs.
Bishop had evidently recovered from a mild attack, but
although Mr. Bishop had no pustules manifest at present, he
was unquestionably sickening for the disease. Mr. Bishop had
complained of pains in the back of the lumbago the result,
as the sufferer thought, of exposure on Wednesday at the
Horse Show but Dr. Cotterell believed the symptoms were
those usually patent on the third day of the disease. He
urges that everything in connection with the patients,
clothing, etc., should be burnt or thoroughly disinfected, the
walls of the house should be scraped and fumed with
sulphur, and not inhabited for at least a month. The patients
themselves should be strictly quarantined. Dr. Cotterell
expresses his surprise that some Chinamen who recently
arrived in the colony were allowed to go at large, for he
understood that some were so palpably affected with the
disease that the scabs were peeling from them. Dr. Cotterell
notifies he will be prepared to vaccinate at his residence at 2
p.m. daily from calf lymph in his possession, and he also has
wired to Melbourne for a fresh supply.
Charge of the Sick
At the express wish of the Government, Dr. Pardey, assistant
to Dr. Thompson at the hospital, will be in charge of the sick.
Dr. Pardey arrived here some 12 months ago from Melbourne
and has earned a good reputation. Sister Lockhart will be the
nurse in charge, and she will be assisted by others from the
hospital. She has been for some time in the Launceston
Hospital and has obtained the diploma of sister for her care
and attention. Her parents live at Glenore, in the Western
district. Several other nurses in the hospital volunteered
their services, and some of the offers will be availed of. A
handy man to cook, wash, etc, will be required, and he will
probably be selected from the hospital staff.

16

The chairman of the Hospital Board yesterday visited and


made arrangements with the contractors to the Launceston
General Hospital to supply the cottage hospitals with
provisions, such as meat, bread, etc. The depot will be
formed just outside the entrance gates, and there all the food
will be deposited. The medicines will all come from the
hospital, and will be dispensed by the doctor in charge.
Origin of the Outbreak
Various rumours are afloat as to the origin of the infection. It
has been stated that the deceased man Watson contracted
the disease whilst handling some chests of Chinamens
goods removed from Bishops Hotel to Mr. A. Harraps store.
On enquiry we find that when Mr. Bishop was removing from
his hotel to his present residence he requested Mr. Harraps
permission to allow some boxes of luggage to be stored for a
few days, to which Mr. Harrap readily consented, and it is a
fact that Watson was engaged in storing them. This was
some days before he was taken ill. There is, however,
nothing to connect the Chinamen who landed recently, and
were supposed to be infected with small-pox, with this
transaction. They went from the steamer to Tom Sings, and
thence to Chin Kits and then left for the mines. It is not the
case that Chinamen have stayed at Bishops Hotel, and the
chests or boxes are not of Chinese make. These boxes have
not been opened, and though Mr. Harraps store has
fumigated on Saturday morning, it is the intention of Mr.
Harrap to request the Mayor to have them burnt or opened
and fumigated. It is said that Mrs. Blanchflower took sick at
the time Bishop was in this hotel on the wharf, and that while
there she washed some clothes belonging to a navvy, who
came over from Melbourne in company with some Chinese
sufferers, and hence she caught the infection. It is also
stated that when Mrs. Bishop was preparing to leave the
hotel on the wharf, he asked Mrs. Blanchflower to make an
inventory of the contents of an unclaimed box of clothing
which had been left for some years in their possession, and in
some articles of which were the unsuspected germs of the

17

poison. These rumours, however, are at best mere surmises,


and throw no real light on the subject. Mrs. Blanchflower was
the first patient, and probably the infection was contracted in
Mr. Bishops hotel brought by some lodger, but by whom or
when is a mystery. There is, however, little doubt that the
Watsons and the Bishops contracted the disease from Mrs.
Blanchflowers residence.
Miscellaneous
The thanks of the community are due to those persons who
took a leading part in the provision of accommodation for the
affected persons, more especially to the Mayor, Messrs. GT
Collins, W.C. Grubb, and Dr. Thompson, all of whom have
ungrudgingly devoted their time and labour to the work. For
Mr. Grubbs prompt permission to use the Mowbray course,
which entails considerable sacrifice on his part, the whole
community are indebted and even the workmen engaged on
the buildings, etc., deserve praise for the manner in which
they worked yesterday to forward matters with a cheerful
and willing spirit.
The Sanitary Officer states that a memorandum is in
circulation, asking the various medical men in the town to
state if they have any cases in hand which would lead to a
suspicion of small-pox. The complete answers to this will no
doubt be received during the day and be dealt with
accordingly.
We understand that Mr. Mault has been instructed by the
Central Board of Health to visit Launceston and investigate
the circumstances.
It is a serious matter that Launceston does not possess a
health officer. The arrangement by which Dr. Murphy was
appointed to a nominal position expired on December 31,
1886, and the vacancy is unfilled. This outbreak manifests
the imperative necessity of a professional adviser being
appointed without a moments delay.

18

The state of the different patients strongly supports the


utility of vaccination.
Besides the cases mentioned in
Pearsons house, where the worst sufferers the man
Hawkins, and the girl Spiers are not vaccinated, those at
Blanchflowers at present most directly affected are two
children who are not vaccinated, and Mr. Blanchflower, who
was vaccinated, has not shown the disease. Unfortunately
the supply of vaccine lymph in the town is limited. Dr.
Cotterell intimates that he is prepared to operate upon
patients at once. Dr. Gutteridge will have a supply on
Tuesday from Melbourne.
Dr. Thompson, the SurgeonSuperintendent at the hospital, has wired to Hobart for
lymph, and will vaccinate patients each day from two to
three oclock free of charge. It seems an oversight that the
two public vaccinators who are at work in the country
districts were not wired to and a temporary supply of vaccine
matter procured from them.

DR. C. J. PIKE, M.R.C.S.E., L.S.A., M.B., B.A. (LOND.), (ACTING),


1885
Dr. Pike was acting-superintendent for only a short period but
was an honorary medical officer and a member of the Board
for some years. Born in Hobart in 1856, he received his
medical education at University College Hospital, London,
where he was a resident medical officer for a year. He
returned to Launceston in 1883 and purchased Dr. Caffyn's
practice.
His obituary notice is in The Examiner 16 February 1912.
DR. JAMES M. PARDEY, 1889-1891

19

When the author first came to the Launceston General


Hospital, Dr. Pardey was a frequent and welcome visitor. He
was the City Medical Officer and his duty was to enquire into
infectious diseases cases. He usually managed to make his
visits coincide with morning tea time.
He had succeeded Dr. L. Grey Thompson as City Medical
Officer on the former's death in 1923, and held the position
until his own death in 1944.
Dr. Pardey was born in 1862. His father, Mr. William. Pardey,
was a chemist of Geelong (Victoria). He was educated at
Geelong Grammar School. Before entering the Melbourne
University he spent some time in his father's chemist shop.
During his student days he was one.of those who took part in
the foundation of The Speculum, the famous journal of the
Medical Students' Society. After being House Surgeon at the
Melbourne Hospital, he came to Launceston in 1886 as House
Surgeon under Grey Thompson. During an outbreak of
smallpox he took charge of the isolation station at Mowbray.
In 1889 he succeeded Grey Thompson as Surgeon
Superintendent. In 1891 he entered into private practice with
Dr. Louis Holmes at premises in Charles Street on the present
site of the C.T.A. Later he practised by himself in St. John
Street. In 1892 he married Miss Florence Morrow of Victoria,
and soon moved to 32 Brisbane Street where he remained
until his retirement from practice in 1932. He served as an
honorary medical officer and as a member of the Board for
many years.
Dr. Pardey was a keen sportsman. He donated the well-known
Pardey Shield for which school girls and boys compete at
tennis.
His son, Dr. Geoffrey Pardey, lives in Sydney. His daughter
married the late Mr. W. R. Menzies whose name will always be
associated with the breeding of racehorses in Tasmania.

20

THE
Australian Medical Journal
MAY 15, 1888.
Original Article
NOTES ON THE RECENT SMALL POX OUTBREAK
IN TASMANIA.
By J. M. PARDEY, M.B. B.S. Melb.
On Friday, September 23, 1887, a patient, who had been
under treatment as a case of measles, developed symptoms
suspicious of small pox. A second medical man was called in
to see this case, and confirmed the opinion of the regular
medical attendant. The case (Nathaniel Watson) was at once
reported to the Local Board of Health. Previous to this,
another medical man had had a patient under his care since
August 30th, whom he was treating for aggravated
chicken-pox, and hence he had not reported the case. From
this case as a centre, all the others can be traced, as will be
seen from the accompanying chart. On September 23, four
other cases were reported in different families. All these
could be traced from the first case, viz., that of Mrs. Branchflowers. The Bishop family, being related, had been visiting
her Mr. Watson lived next door, and Mrs. Pearson washed for
the Branchflowers. All these families; were at once
quarantined in their houses. Where the primary infection
came from is still a mystery, and is likely to remain so, as all
possible means have been taken to trace it without success.
At the time of the outbreak, there was no Health Officer for
the town of Launceston. Dr. Pike was appointed to the
position after a short delay, and saw the patients; at their
homes prior to removal to the quarantine station.
On the receipt of the news of the outbreak, further delay was
occasioned, as there was no quarantine station in which to
place the patients. However, between September 23rd and
27th, a quarantine station was built on the Mowbray
Racecourse, about two and a half miles from Launceston, and
connected with town by telephone. The station was not at all
suitable for the purpose intended, as the small pox hospitals
were not twenty feet away from the building in which the

suspects were sleeping. Had it not been for the high winds
prevailing all the time we were in quarantine, 1 think many
cases would have been developed in the station. VOL. X. No.
5.
_____________________________________________________________
194
Australian Medical Journal. MAY 15, 1888
On September 27, the first batch of patients, ten in number,
together with fourteen suspects, were admitted into the
station. At one time there were 75 inmates at the station,
within an area of 130 yards by 60 yards. Five cases
developed small-pox in the station, but all of these developed
symptoms within twelve days after admission to the station,
so that they must have contracted the disease before
admission.
There were 34 cases treated in all, including the Don case. Of
these, 11 died, all from Launceston, two dying at their
homes, and nine at the quarantine station. Of the remaining
23 cases, 21 came from Launceston, and two from the
country (one from the Don, and the other from Evandale).
Two out of the 23 cases were nursed at their homes, and the
Evandale case was treated at the Evandale quarantine
station. The last patient was discharged from the Launceston
quarantine station on December 6, 1887.
The following returns will show the analysis of the cases
treated as regards vaccination, &e.:The return showing, the connection between the various
cases, also shows how quickly the disease is narrowed in its
limits by efficient isolation.
FIRST CROP.
SECOND CROP.
0 {Branchflower
William. Branchflower,
George Branchflower,
Adye
White, Mary Ann
Rinds, Cecilia
Speers. Emily Bennett, Alfred
Hawkins William
22

THIRD CROP.

Speers, George

Marshall, Leslie
Marshall, Mrs.
Storrer, David
Hodges, Edwin
Watson, Nathaniel
Watson, Stewart Ralston
Watson, Henry George Rowe, Samuel
Chick, Henry
Watson, Mrs. Samuel
Barkway, Kate
Larter, Benjamin
Houston, Samuel
Millgan, James
Bishop, Margaret
Wilkinson, Catherine
Wilkinson, Jno-.
Murray, Henry
Smith, William (Don) Bishop, William, Jun.
Bishop, William, Sen.
Mills, Alfred - Ward, Harriet

The source of infection in the first case (Mrs Branchflower)


cannot be traced. The source of infection in the Evandale
cam (child Lewis") not included in chart, could not be tracedMAY 15, 1888
Journal. 195

Australian

Medical

VACCINATION RETURNS.
The following return, as showing the protective effects of
vaccination against ' small pox, during the late outbreak at
Launceston, in Tasmania, will confirm all previous experience
in this matter
Number.
34
22
30
6
5

Never vaccinated
Deficient vaccination marks
Good or fairly good
vaccination marks
Vaccinated and
re-vaccinated
Had small pox before
23

Attacked. Died
18
9
10
1
5
1*
0
0
0
0

Total

97

33

11

*Complicated with Bronco-pneumonia.


There was an additional case of small pox at the Don River,
this is not included, as I am unable to get the necessary
evidence.
The following table shows the form of small pox in those
attacked, and the subsequent results ; also, the appearance
of the 1 vaccination marks in the different forms:-

Discrete
Semi-co
nfluent
Conflue
nt
Hemorr
hagic
Total

Numb Good Defici


Not
er.
Vaccin
ent
Vaccin
atn Vaccin ated
Marks
tn
12
4
4
4
1
0
1
0
11
0
5
6
9
1
0
8

33

10

24

18

Died

Recov
ered

0
0
3
8

12
1
8
1

11

22

The Launceston Examiner Tuesday 27th September


1887
We regret having to chronicle a second death in connection
with the small-pox outbreak. Emily Spiers, aged eight years,
daughter of Mrs. Pearson, in Briants lane, died yesterday
afternoon at forty minutes past two. On enquiry at midnight
on Sunday it was reported that she was living, though
dangerously ill, and during yesterday her case became so
painful and hopeless that the end came as a welcome relief.
The sad event had a serious effect on the invalid distracted
mother, shut off from all outside sympathy or assistance, who
rushed to the door shrieking for help, crying Poor Emily is
dead; wont any one come? This patient has had the worst
form of the disease, and it seems that vaccination in her case
was neglected when a child in the country. Disinfectants
were sorely needed in this house, but were speedily supplied.
The deceased child will be interred this morning at eight
oclock. The other patient, Hawkins, Mrs. Pearsons father,
was somewhat better yesterday, being able to move about
and help himself. The boy keeps well, but is fretting at the
loss of his sister. It will be a welcome relief when this family
are removed to the quarantine hospital, and Mrs. Pearson
can have the rest she so sorely needs.
We learn that the five patients in Blanchflowers home are
reported upon favourably.
We reported in yesterdays account of the Watson family that
the second child a boy about two years of age was
ordered by Dr. Pike a few days ago to be taken away when its
father was lying dangerously ill. He was put in charge of a
relative (Mrs. White) in Frederick Street, and seems to have
sickened on Sunday. Mrs. White has lodgers in the house,
and in their interests the child was somewhat
unceremoniously sent away in a perambulator yesterday
morning, and left at the door of another relative near the
wharf. After a process of being baudied about the child was
eventually taken to the mother and visited by Dr. Pike, who
considered the child was merely indisposed from teething.
Another case of suspicious sickening took place yesterday in
Bishops residence in William-street. Mr. H.L. Murray, a
25

boarder, about 30 years of age, who came over from


Melbourne about six weeks ago for a change of scene. On
landing he went to Bishops Hotel, and removed with them to
William-street when they made a change of residence. The
necessary but unfortunate isolation at this house operated
seriously for Mr. Murray, as he wished to communicate with
his relatives in Melbourne. It is stated that a promise was
made to him that his correspondence should be posted in
time for yesterdays mail, but for some reason the promise
was not kept, and the letter or telegram was not sent. The
patients at this house, Mr. and Mrs. Bishop and their boy,
were progressing favourably yesterday.
It was reported to the authorities during the afternoon that a
case had occurred at Radfords row, William-street, near the
Tamar Hotel. Mrs. Hines was said to be attacked, having
caught the infection whilst waiting on Mrs. Pearson, previous
to the residence of the latter being isolated. The sanitary
officer and his assistant visited the case, and immediately
requested Dr. Pike to inspect and report. The doctor did so
and concluded that nothing serious need be apprehended. It
was stated in town yesterday that a suspicious case had
manifested itself at the Don and our Latrobe correspondent
confirms the rumour and states the action which had been
taken. A man named Smith, an employee on the s.s. Devon,
is a married man and resides at the Don. When last in town
in company with a son of Mr. Wm Bishop he is stated to have
visited the Blanchflowers, Smiths sister being engaged
nursing Mrs. Blanchflower in her late illness. It seems that
Smith was taken ill, and that he was unable to come back to
town as usual with the steamer, being landed at the Don.
The case has attracted local attention, and is being dealt
with.
Arrangements are being perfected at the quarantine ground
for the reception of the sufferers and the suspects. Mr. H.N.
Taylor, the Inspector of Public Works has been most
indefatigable in his personal attention to the work, having
been on the ground continuously since Sunday morning up to
last night, when he showed signs of the severe fatigue. Had
relays of men been employed the completion might have
been effected some hours earlier, and better faith have been
kept with those to be removed. But considering the novel
26

and incidental circumstances in connection with the site, the


structures, fittings, provisions, etc., and conveyance to such
a distance, the result is highly praiseworthy and reflects
credit on all concerned.
On authority of the Chairman of the Hospital Board and Dr.
Pardey the ambulance wagon was ordered to take the first
instalment of patients to the quarantine at half past four
yesterday afternoon. At that hour it was driven to Bishops
residence, and its appearance was hailed with joy by the
suspects, who were longing for a change. Three men and
two women entered the vehicle and started for the ground;
on the way, however, information was received in town by
telephone that the hospital was not ready, and a messenger
met the ambulance when half way out to say that if the
suspects proceeded to their destination the workmen would
strike. There was no alternative but to return, and the wagon
was driven back to Bishops much to the chagrin of the
occupants. Later in the day it was officially announced that
the quarantine arrangements will not be finally completed till
1 p.m. today.
We have already referred to the generous action of Mr. W.C.
Grubb in so promptly granting the use of a portion of the
Mowbray race-course, though his pure-bred ewes were then
lambing on the estate, and when we also state that the use
of the ground was given free of all charge, with merely a
verbal understanding that fair compensation would be paid
for actual damages, such as the burning of the erections on
the ground when done with, it may be readily imagined that
the circulation yesterday of a rumour that Mr. Grubb was
charging 20 a week rent has caused that gentleman very
great annoyance. On Sunday the Government were apprised
by telegram of the arrangements made for establishing the
cottage hospitals and quarantine station, and the Chairman
of the Launceston Hospital Board requested the Chief
Secretary to ask the Inspector of Police to supply the
necessary police to prevent persons entering the quarantine
ground. This of course implied also preventing patients and
suspects from leaving the quarantine, which would be a farce
unless measures be taken to enforce the regulations.
Humorous suggestions have been made in town that an
excellent opportunity for utilising the Permanent force is now
27

offered, but as a matter of fact it was presumed that the


Superintendent of the Selby district, Mr. R. Armstrong, would
be authorised to execute the guarding of the quarantine
station. Mr. Armstrong anticipated the duty would devolve on
him, and was anxious to receive early instructions, since it
will require not less than eight men to efficiently keep up a
patrol round the quarantine station day and night for an
indefinite period, and he will have to obtain some of the
number outside his own district. Selby is an extensive
district, stretching from Hadspen on the west to Lisle on the
east, and from Halls Track on the north to the Borders of
Evandale on the south. Over this large area are scattered
twelve constables, with one sub-inspector stationed at St.
Leonards, and a second at Prospect, acting as clerk to the
superintendent in the Launceston office. The district cannot
be left entirely bare of police protection, but wherever the
men are obtained from some arrangements for regular meals
and sleeping accommodation while on duty at the quarantine
station must be made, and as not even a shed has been
provided so far, a few hours notice at least were necessary
to enable Mr. Armstrong to make his preparations. It will
hardly be credited, however, that up to last evening no
instructions whatever had reached Mr. Armstrong, and if the
patients had been removed to the quarantine ground
yesterday afternoon as intended the suspects might have
quietly walked out again as soon as darkness hid them from
the solitary constable on duty there.
Some perhaps unavoidable shortcomings have occurred in
endeavouring to carry out necessary regulations with an
unfortunately divided authority.
Although it must be
conceded that all who have had responsibility since the
outbreak have worked with an admirable determination to do
their best, for the reason stated some little friction has
obtained.
We believe, however, that matters will be
immediately put on a more satisfactory footing, and that all
authority in future will emanate from the executive of the
Local Board of Health. The Chairman of the Hospital Board,
who has been most indefatigable in the supervision of his
share of the arrangements, last evening advised the Chief
Secretary of his wish, now that the work of establishing the
hospital is complete; to be relieved of any further responsible
oversight.
We believe it has been arranged with the
28

Government that his Worship the Mayor will, as Chairman of


the Local Board of Health, assume the guiding control of the
necessary operations. The Chief Secretary concurred in the
repretentation of, who last evening received from the Chief
Secretary the following telegram: - Accept the thanks of the
Government for your public-spirited attention and assistance
towards ameliorating the condition of your afflicted fellow
townsmen. His Worship the Mayor has ample authority to
carry on the good work commenced.
As we have already stated, Dr. Pike, as soon as he found on
Friday he had small-pox cases under his care, gave up all his
private practice, and isolated himself in order to devote his
services to the infectious epidemic. Dr. Murphy, who had
charge of the first small-pox patients, has not left his house
since the true nature of the disease was discovered and is
stated to be laid up with an attack of rheumatism; though he
has been able to see a few special patients who have called.
On Sunday night Dr. Pike wired to the Premier stating that he
was only visiting the small-pox patients and acting in concert
with the Sanitary Officer, and asking for instructions, but with
strange fatuity the Government who, like the Central Board,
seem to think Dr. Murphy, whose appointment as Health
Officer of the town ceased on 1st January, still holds that
position, declined to officially recognise or recompense Dr.
Pikes disinterested and generous action, and this in the face
of a telegram on Sunday night from the Chairman of the
Local Board stating that the other medical men of the town
refused to attend even suspected cases of small-pox. Had
Dr. Pike thrown up the unpleasant task the town would have
been left without any medical man to look to, as Dr. Pardeys
instructions only related to the quarantine station at
Mowbray.
Yesterday afternoon, however, Dr. Pike was
officially instructed to retain charge of all cases in town, and
as soon as the Chairman of the Local Board received by wire
last evening the authority which he should possess by virtue
of this position, without three days of red-tape formality and
wearisome delay, he offered Dr. Pike the position of Health
Officer to the Local Board, which will probably be accepted.
Dr. Thompson, as port officer for Launceston, went down to
Rosevears in the s.s. Indignant yesterday afternoon to clear
the s.s. Mangana for Melbourne, After inspecting the 47
29

passengers, besides the crew, he gave the steamer a clean


bill of health, and she proceeded on her way. The port
officer, we believe, had a little difficulty with a Hobart
gentleman who somewhat superciliously objected to the
routine of inspection. After being shown that it would be for
his own personal comfort to be classed as clean with the rest
of the passengers he mildly acquiesced. Dr. Thompson will
clear the s.s. Corinna this morning. It will be seen in another
column that the Melbourne authorities have decided to
quarantine all vessels arriving from Tasmania until inspected,
and we believe the Sydney authorities have decided to adopt
the same course.
Dr. Gutteridge wishes us to say that a sentence in our report
of his remarks that the disease might be detected after the
third day should read that the person exposed to infection
might be protected until the third day by means of
vaccination.
Report of the Sanitary Officer
Mr. J.G. Bushman, Sanitary Officer, presented the following
report to the meeting of the Local Board of Health yesterday
afternoon, and which was read as follows:I have the honour to report for the information of the local
board the following circumstances connected with the
reported outbreak of small-pox on the 17th instant:
Nathaniel Watson, adult, was notified to the department as
having measles by Dr. Pike. On the 22 nd inst. Another case of
measles was notified at Mrs. Pearsons, of Bryants Row,
William-street, by the same gentleman. I visited both cases
and gave the usual precautionary directions, and also sent
printed instructions for their guidance. On 23 rd inst., about 9
p.m., Drs. Hallowes and Pike called at my house and reported
verbally that there was a suspected case of small-pox at
Pearsons, and a confluent form of the disease at Watsons.
The same cases originally reported as suffering from
measles. Acting on this, I telephoned to the Superintendent
of Police to isolate the house in question, having heard also
that there were suspicious cases at Bishops, William-street,
and Blanchflowers, next to the same case above Watsons in
30

Lower George-street.
These premises were practically
included in the isolation. Watson died in about six hours after
the report of Drs. Hallowes and Pike. The body was promptly
disinfected and early burial enforced. No other cases have
occurred in this house, but during the period the fatal case
was under treatment a child was sent to a house in Frederickstreet, which may probably turn out to be another centre of
infection. At Pearsons there have been in all three cases,
Mrs. Pearson, a daughter (reported as having measles), and
the father, aged 75 years. The child died whilst I am writing.
At Blanchflowers there are at present five cases doing well.
Disinfectants have been furnished to all the infected
premises. There is at present no reliable evidence as to the
introduction of the disease, though several rumours are
current, but I may state that I am in possession of one fact
which may lead to an explanation, but I do not deem it
advisable to make it public at present. The suspects and four
patients will be sent out this afternoon. The area for the
Mowbray hospital should be 75 ft by 100 ft and as nearly 100
ft as possible of quarantine ground all round. It having come
to my knowledge that a site at Glen Dhu had been cleared
for the isolation hospital, I represented to the chairman of the
Local Board of Health and the chairman of the Hospital Board
that such a site was most unsuitable, and beg to state my
reason for objecting to a course that would have been found
prejudicial, not only to the patients, but also and in a more
marked manner to the inhabitants of a populous area. We
found in India, an experience in London has confirmed the
results, that the following figures .(?) the extent of aerial
small-pox infection. Outside a radius of one mile from a
small-pox hospital there are 1.4 cases per 100,000
inhabitants. Within any distance from half a mile to a mile
radius from the small-pox hospital there are 20 times as
many cases. Within any distance from a quarter to half a
mile there are 40 times as many cases, while within a quarter
of a mile radius there are 60 times as many cases. Under
these circumstances, had the hospital been erected on the
Glen Dhu site, the following number of houses and inmates
would have been within an infectious area, and although
there may be objections to the present site at Mowbray, it is
preferable to the other. Within a quarter-mile radius of Glen
Dhu site there are 35 houses with 140 inmates; within half a
mile, 175 houses with 700 inmates, within three-quarters of a
31

mile 425 houses with 1700 inmates, within one mile 835
houses with 3300 inmates, so that over 3300 people would
have been subjected to the risk of infection from the Glen
Dhu site.
The following certificates were appended to the report:
September 28 There is a case of small-pox named
Watson in a lane off Lower George-street. (Herbert
Hallowes)
September 17 There is a case of measles named
Nathaniel Watson in Lower George-street (Charles J
Pike)
September 22 Mr. Pearson, Bryants lane, order of
measles notified by Dr. Pike on Sept 22 (JG Bushman)
Sept 23 In case of further suspicious cases arising
with Watsons case in Lower George street, I do not at
present intend to attend them Charles J. Pike.
September 23 9 p.m. The case I reported to you of
Watsons in Lower George-street as a case of measles
is, I now believe, a case of confluent small-pox.
Charles J. Pike.
Sept I certify that there are two cases, Pearsons
child and Mr. Hawkins in Bryants lane, William-street,
strongly suspicious of small-pox. Charles J. Pike.
(By Electric Telegraph) Hobart, Sept. 26
The outbreak of small-pox at Launceston continues to be a
theme of conversation and discussion here. Any scepticism
at first cherished by medical men as to the actuality of the
fell disease has not been pretty effectually dissipated,
especially by the unequivocal testimony of an expert like Dr.
Pike.
The Central Board of Health met to-day. They drafted and
adopted certain regulations for the prevention and mitigation
of the disease. These were considered at a special meeting
of the Executive this afternoon and approved. They have
been gazetted, and by the courtesy and thoughtfulness of
the Premier the full text has been transmitted by electric
telegraph to the Launceston press so that no time might be
lost in putting the public and all concerned in possession of
32

them. The board accompanied their regulations with a


recommendation to the Government to vigourously enforce
the compulsory provisions of the Vaccination Act.
Ministers, however, have decided not to move in the matter,
as the act is in force, and each local Board of Health has
power to see it duly and fully carried out.
The vaccination department have forwarded ten pounds of
calf lymph to Launceston, that being all that could be spared,
but the Melbourne authorities have been cabled to send as
much as they could afford direct to Launceston, so probably a
supply will arrive per s.s. Flinders tomorrow.
The Board of Health today received a telegram from
Melbourne stating that Tasmania has been declared an
infected port, and that all vessels arriving thence will be
boarded by an officer of health and the passengers
inspected.
A trained nurse has offered her services to Dr. Hardy to go
into quarantine and nurse small-pox patients wherever
required. She will be sent to Launceston.
Longford September 26
The Warden, as chairman of the Local Board of Health, has
summoned the board to meet to-morrow (Tuesday) morning
at 10.30, in consequence of a female resident of Launceston
and infant coming here (to stop) by the first train this
morning from the immediate neighbourhood of Mr. Bishops
in William-street. A telegram was sent to the Chief Secretary
to ask if the house should be isolated, and the Chief
Secretary replied:- No provision in act for such a case. Warn
neighbours, and caution the family lately arrived to separate
themselves for a time from intercourse with others.
Mr. James East, inspector of the Local Board of Health, visited
the house tonight and found no cause whatever for alarm.
The female and infant from Launceston appeared to be quite
well.

33

Latrobe, Sept 26
The news that a man named Smith suffering from small-pox
had been left at the Don by the Devon created quite a scare
over the township this afternoon. Sub-Inspector Collett, on
receiving a telegram to above effect, immediately wired to
Constable McPherson, stationed at the Don, to see that the
man was isolated at once. He also sent Constable Burke
from Latrobe by the evening train to report any further
outbreak.
Letters to the Editor Tuesday 27th September, 1887
Small-Pox Outbreak
Sir, - As a stranger in your beautiful little town it is a
cause of pain to me to find that small-pox has paid
yon a visit, and I trust that with proper attention to
sanitary measures you will be able to stamp it out.
Your valuable article of to-day has the right ring about
it in cautioning the public not to give way to funk.
The surest method of getting rid of the disease is to
keep a cool head, and to do everything which lies in
our power to keep it from attacking us. As a means to
this end I would respectfully suggest that each of the
doctors who have been, or who are attending these
cases, should be placed in quarantine lest they should
be the means of infecting other persons with whom
they may come in contact. Your medical men may
urge that they disinfect themselves, or that they are
vaccinated, or, perhaps, re-vaccinated, but even these
precautions, whilst they may protect themselves, may
not prevent them being the means of spreading smallpox. Yours, etc., W.J. MIERS.
[We have excised the greater portion of the above letter,
which is devoted to an attack on vaccination. On ordinary
occasions such an exhibition might pass unnoticed, but with
the disease amongst us, and as the only, as it is the certain,
means for encountering it successfully is vaccination, it is not
a time for indulging such senseless and mischievous
contentions ED.]
The Examiner Wednesday 28th September 1887
34

SMALL-POX OUTBREAK
MORE PRONOUNCED CASES
We regret to notify that two cases reported yesterday as
suspicious have developed into pronounced small-pox. The
child of Mrs. Watson, who was taken to his home on Monday
from Mrs. Whites lodging-house in Frederick-street west,
where it was temporarily staying, has contracted the disease.
Mr. Murray, a visitor from Melbourne, who was lodging with
the Bishops, and who on Monday manifested the earlier
symptoms, is also a victim.
In consequence of the child Watson sickening whilst at Mrs.
Whites, that residence was isolated yesterday morning, and
is guarded by the police. The household consists of four
person, besides some four lodgers. A boy named Kilalea,
from near Westbury, is one of the lodgers, and attends the
High School. He was intending proceeding to Westbury
yesterday afternoon to spend the Michaelmas holidays, but
such intention was frustrated.
We learn that Mrs. Ellard of Fitzroy, Melbourne, a sister of Mrs.
Watson, arrived yesterday by the steamer from Melbourne to
make arrangements for the return of Mrs. Watson to her
relatives in Victoria. It was a sad disappointment to learn
that her little nephew had developed the disease and with its
mother was being despatched to the quarantine camp.
Mrs Hines, in Radfords row, William-street, whose case was
reported as suspicious on Monday is still under observation.
Mrs. Pearsons child, Emily Spiers, who died on Monday
afternoon was interred yesterday morning at the General
Cemetery, Mr. R. Marshall, Town Missionary, performing the
burial service at the grave. It is reported on good authority
that a woman broke the quarantine, and got over the fence
into Mrs. Pearsons house to assist her in laying out the body.
The feature of yesterdays proceedings was the transfer of
the patients and suspects to the quarantine station. Dr.
Pardey, the medical officer in charge, resolved not to admit
them until the arrangements for their reception were fairly
complete. These was effected yesterday afternoon, and Mr.
H.T. Russell, the contractor, and his staff of men took their
35

departure at half-past 2 oclock. The work of erecting and


adapting the buildings has been performed with a
praiseworthy amount of self-sacrifice. The men worked all
day on Sunday from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. without stopping to eat,
and have had little rest since operations were started. The
lodge at the entrance, kitchen, closets, washhouse, and coal
shed were all erected yesterday between 9 in the morning
and 3 in the afternoon.
It would seem that some mistake has been made with
respect to the site of the kitchen. It certainly seems to be
flirting with the disease to have placed the kitchen in such
proximity to the hospital buildings, and we believe the
Surgeon Superintendent of the hospital has advised its
immediate removal.
The cottage hospitals are also too close to the quarters of the
suspects, but so far as the internal arrangements are
concerned they seem admirably adapted to the exigencies of
the case, and when the various agencies have been in work a
few days no doubt all will be found to work smoothly and for
the well-being of the patients. There will be considerable
latitude allowed to the suspects for exercise, etc., and it may
be presumed that donations or loans of games, books, etc.,
would be thankfully received.
The staff at present consists of the medical officer (Dr.
Pardey), the nurse (Miss Lockhart), a carpenter, and a handy
man, and no doubt the suspects who are in good health will
be glad to utilise their time in rendering any assistance. The
police in charge yesterday were Constables Harwood
(Invermay), Hudson (Trevallyn), and Sutcliffe (Dilston) a
staff which will be relieved and augmented by the arrival of
six to-day from the south. It appears that Mr. Superintendent
Armstrong, after waiting in vain for instructions on Monday,
received a telegram from the inspectors office about 5 p.m.,
asking if he wanted any men. He replied in the affirmative,
but it was not till 4.30 p.m. yesterday that he heard any more
about the matter. He was then notified that six constables
would arrive from Hobart by Wednesday mornings train.
There were three constables placed on duty yesterday at the
quarantine ground, but no arrangements have yet been
made nor authority received from Hobart for supplying them
36

with meals and sleeping accommodation, etc.


The
authorities at Hobart are, however, aware that the
Launceston public are a long-suffering people in such
matters, and it is probable that these essential details will be
attended to by the headquarters of the Territorial Police
within the next few days. At present there are several
hedges in the vicinity of the area which can be utilised by the
constables for sleeping under.
The first to be conveyed were part of the suspects from
Bishops residence, in William-street, who arrived on the
ground at four oclock, and the rest of the isolated ones and
patients were all conveyed, in all twenty three, during the
evening, and were comfortably housed.
It seemed a pleasure to the pent-up suspects to get a breath
of fresh air and enjoy some freedom, but considerable
amazement was manifested on arrival at seeing black flags
waving in their honour, and on one of which was outlined a
skull and crossed bones with execrable taste.
The Treasurer has given instructions to Mr. Windeatt, the local
postmaster, to fumigate all letters posted from Launceston.
The operation involves a considerable amount of
inconvenience, the work having to be done in a small room
and with limited appliances. It is notified that the inland
mails will close half an hour earlier than usual in
consequence.
It will be seen from our Hobart telegrams that the Minister of
Lands and Works made a statement last night in the
Assembly respecting the outbreak, and thanking those who
had taken such effective and speedy action for compassing
the disease.
Dr. Thompson, the Launceston Port Officer, inspected the
passengers and crew of the s.s. Corinna yesterday morning
and gave her a clean bill of health. He also vaccinated eight
persons at the hospital, and has arranged to operate on
twenty today.
The case of Smith at the Don, an employee on the s.s.
Devon, which we referred to yesterday, has developed into
37

pronounced small-pox. We learn that Smiths household


consists of eight persons, the sick man, his wife, four
children, and Mrs. Smiths father and mother. His wife states
that eruptions manifested about the loins, and she applied
magic oil. Every precaution has been taken to prevent
communication with the inmates, the constables being told
off to alternately keep watch. The Police Magistrate at
Launceston yesterday morning received a wire from SubInspector Collett, from the Don, announcing that Smiths case
was pronounced small-pox, and that some clothes belonging
to him were still on board the s.s. Devon. As the steamer had
left this port no immediate action could be taken. During the
evening the Chairman of the Hospital Board received
telegrams from the Central Board of Health, requesting that
disinfectants should be sent immediately to the Don, and
asking if a qualified nurse could also be despatched without
delay. A quantity of sulphate of iron will be forwarded by the
first train this morning, but a telegram was sent in the
evening that a nurse could not be spared from the hospital
staff. On arrival at Formby yesterday afternoon the s.s.
Devon was detained by the police under orders from the
Central Board of Health and later on in the evening Capt. Tait
was desired to leave the wharf and anchor in the stream. At
present it is uncertain what steps will be taken, but it is
probably that the ship will be thoroughly fumigated and
allowed to proceed on her voyage. Nothing further seems to
be necessary, as it was on the previous trip that Smith left
the ship, and though he may have carried the infection in his
clothes, which have since been destroyed, personally he was
not then in an infectious condition. The Premier stated last
night in the Legislative Council that the Minister of Defence
had forwarded material from his department to the Don for
the accommodation of patients and for those who had to be
isolated.
We learn from a gentleman who arrived yesterday from
Melbourne some particulars concerning the action taken by
the Melbourne authorities with respect to steamers arriving
from Tasmania. The s.s. Moreton arrived from the North West
Cost ports of Tasmania on Sunday evening. It seems that
prompt steps were taken by the Melbourne Central Board of
Health, and the Moreton on reaching the lightship was
cautioned by the water police not to proceed further. Efforts
38

were made to detain the steamer at the Heads, but she did
not respond to the signals made. As she could not be
stopped at the Heads, Drs. Maclean and Figg, the health
officers, were telegraphed to meet the steamer off the
Williamstown Breakwater, and make an inspection. They
accordingly went out in the Customs steam launch, and
brought the Moreton up there, where she anchored. They
went on board and inspected all to the number of about 40,
nine of whom were passengers, mostly from Mount Bischoff.
The medical officers found that there were no traces of the
disease. The steamer was detained all night on Sunday,
none of the passengers being allowed to land until Monday
morning. The matter of vaccination seems to have been
carried out in a very compulsory form, for all those who did
not show signs of recent and successful vaccination had to
submit themselves for operation before being allowed to
land. Dr. Figg then gave the vessel a clean bill of health, but
the Moreton, pending the decision of the Central board of
Health, was ordered to lie at the outer anchorage. Later in
the day the vessel was permitted to pass up the river.
Dr. Haines, of Longford, informs us that he attended a special
meeting of the Melbourne Central board of Health on Monday
last, when it was decided to apply for an Order-in-Council for
quarantining vessels arriving from Tasmania until thorough
examination has been made of the passengers and crew.
The president of the board, with great kindness and courtesy,
supplied Dr. Haines with a large quantity of human and calf
lymph for his own use and also for Dr. Hallowes. These
worthy medicos immediately operated on each other, and
during the day Dr. Hallowes performed over 40 operations.
Some of our readers might have imagined from our Hobart
telegrams in last issue that the requirements in the matter of
calf lymph had been supplied for the next few years to come,
the government having generously forwarded ten pounds
of the precious article, but ten points was what should have
appeared, the quantity thus represented being quickly
exhausted.
Our Longford correspondent writes yesterday (Tuesday):-

39

The local Board of Health met at the Council Chambers this


morning at half-past 10 oclock, when the following members
were present:-Messrs. W.H.D. Archer (Chairman), T.R. Arthur,
J. Appleyard, and I. Wright.
An apology was made for Mr. Basil Archers absence.
The chairman explained that his reasons for calling the
members of the board together was to consult with them as
to what steps should be taken with reference to the arrival on
the township yesterday of a female and infant who resided in
the immediate neighbourhood of Mr. Bishops, William-street,
Launceston.
After talking the matter well over a resolution was proposed
by Mr. Wright, seconded by Mr. Arthur, and carried
unanimously, to the effect that the relatives here be
requested not to have any communication with their
relations in Launceston, and that no clothes be sent out by
them to Longford to be washed. Dr. Appleyard was also
instructed to pay occasional visits to the house in question.
Dr. Appleyard and Mr. James East, Inspector of Health,
subsequently visited the house in Wellington-street and
acquainted the inmates with the Boards decision, which was
received with a promise that it should receive due attention.
The doctor also examined both mother and child and found
them in good health, arranging to vaccinate the latter as
soon as a supply of lymph (which had been sent for) came to
hand.
Although at present there is no real cause for alarm here, yet
from the rumours abroad yesterday morning the Warden, as
Chairman of the Board of Health, was quite justified in calling
a meeting to the members, and is also fairly entitled to the
thanks of the community for so doing a preventative at all
times being far preferable to a cure at least so saith
Longford Notes, who does not happen to be a medico.
Another satisfaction resulting from the prompt steps taken is
that the fears of many anxious ones here will now be allayed,
a report having actually got abroad to-day that the house in
question had been isolated.
40

By Electric Telegraph Hobart, Sept 27


The Central Board of Health have received the following
telegram from the secretary of the Board of Health, Sydney:
- Many thanks for information re outbreak of small-pox at
Launceston. Do you require any human vaccine lymph in
tubes? Kindly cause owners and masters of vessels to be
warned that all vessels from your colony must bring up for
examination at the Heads. The secretary of the Central
Board replied, returning thanks for the offer and requesting a
supply of lymph to be forwarded at once.
The Central Board of Health have received the following
telegram from Mr. John Henry, J.P., of the Don:- Dr. Smythe,
from Latrobe has visited the patient and confirmed Dr.
Richardsons opinion.
The Launceston Examiner
1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
ANOTHER DEATH

Thursday September 29th

We regret to have to chronicle another death in connection


with the small-pox outbreak. Wm. Blanchflower, eight years
of age, one of three children of Mr. Joseph Blanchflower,
under treatment, died at the quarantine station about noon
yesterday. The previous intimation from the medical officer
was that the child was not so well, and had passed a restless
night. It seems that it grew rapidly worse and expired as
stated. Arrangements were effected for its speedy burial
near the station, and during the afternoon the Sanitary
Officer (Mr. Bushman) went out to superintend the burial.
The service at the grave was conducted by the Ven.
Archdeacon Hales.
There is no change in the condition of the other patients
since the issue of the following bulletin which was published
yesterday morning: - Patients: Thomas Hawkins, fairly well;
Wm. Bishop and Henry Robert Miller, doing fairly well; Harry
Watson, George Blanchflower, Adye Blanchflower, Annie
41

Blanchflower, Mary Jane White, Margaret Bishop, all doing


well; Wm. Blanchflower, not so well, had a restless night
(since dead). Suspected casse Wm. Bishop, junr., doing
well. Suspects Females: Sarah Ransley, Harriet Pearson,
Elizabeth Watson, Maud M. Bishop, Stuart Ralston (Watson)
and Ann Clark; Males; Frederick Miller, George Holkam, Frank
Johnston, Wm. Barrett, Christian Jansen, Joseph Manckt,
George Bishop and George Pearce.
The patients and those under restriction are receiving kindly
attention from outside sources. It has been arranged that
they will be furnished daily with the current newspapers. We
understand that Mr. G.T. Collins yesterday made a large
selection of out-door and in-door games and amusements at
Messrs. Walch Bros. and Birchall and that firm also sent
parcels and books for the sufferers, as well as special ones
for the medical officer and the nurses. Mr R.F. Irvine sent out
a supply of tobacco and pipes.
Pending adequate arrangements being effected by the
authorities
at
Hobart
for
police
supervision,
Mr.
Superintendent Coulter of the Launceston municipal force
opportunely supplied four constables yesterday morning, so
that Mr. Superintendent Armstrong could relieve his men on
duty. Yesterday afternoon, Mr. Supt. Armstrong received a
telegram from the Inspector stating that two more constables
would leave Hobart by that nights mail train and authorising
him to swear in four special constables to make up the total
of twelve, which Mr. Armstrong had applied for as necessary
to ensure an efficient patrol, the force being divided into
three relays of four men each, eight hour watches. Mr. W.C.
Grubb has also kindly granted the use of the stables on the
left hand side going on to the course as quarters for the
constables, who to-night will be able to sleep on the floor
instead of under a hedge. Authority has, however, been
obtained for fitting up the stables, and Mr. H.N. Taylor and Mr.
Russell inspected them yesterday to see what was required.
Floors will be laid down in two of the loose boxes, bunks for
sleeping in will be erected, a stove placed in the jockeys
room, and as Mr. Russell was to make a start at once the men
should be comfortably housed by to-night. Mr. Armstrong
also received authority yesterday to arrange with the
42

Mowbray Hotel to cater for the constables until other


arrangements can be made.
Very wisely anticipating the stringent regulations obtaining in
Melbourne respecting vaccination of Tasmanian arrivals, Dr.
Hallowes, at the request of Dr. Thompson the Port-officer,
yesterday vaccinated the officers and crew of the s.s.
Flinders. Dr. Hallowes was busily engaged the whole of
yesterday, and including the crew mentioned, vaccinated
over 80 persons. The steamer leaves to-day at 8 oclock
from Rosevears, and Dr. Thompson will proceed there to give
her a clean bill of health.
In compliance with urgent requests from country
practitioners Dr. Thompson has issued 90 tubes and points of
vaccine matter during the past two days, beside supplying
quantities to local medical men and using a quantity at the
hospital.
Our Longford correspondent writes yesterday (Wednesday):The Inspector of Health, Mr. James East, received by this
mornings post a supply of lymph from Dr. Thompson of
Launceston, and at once handed it over to Dr. Appleyard,
who it will be seen by advertisement is now prepared to
operate upon patients in the district. The doctor vaccinated
Mrs. Hawkins infant from Launceston this afternoon.
A meeting of the Local Board of Health was held yesterday
evening, at seven oclock, at the Town Hall. There were
present the Mayor (Mr. R.W. Carter), Messrs. H. Button, B.P.
Farrelly, J. Ellis, H.J. Dean, and S.J. Sutton, and the secretary,
Mr. C.W. Rocher, Messrs. P. Barrett and D. Scott were absent
in Hobart, and Mr. S.C. Sadler was out of town. An epitome of
the business transacted since the last meeting was read and
confirmed. On the motion of Mr. Button, the Sanitary Officer
was requested to bring before the board, a recommendation
as to the best disinfectant of clothing, etc, in cases of
infectious disease. On the motion of Mr. Sutton, a subcommittee, consisting of the Mayor, and Mr. Button, and the
mover, was appointed to bring up a recommendation for
amending the Public Health Act in the direction of giving
power to local boards to act promptly in the emergency of
sudden outbreaks of disease. Doctors Murphy and Pike had
43

been requested to report on the recent cases of infectious


disease in their charge. Dr. Murphy had not replied. Dr. Pike,
in reply, explained that up to Friday night last he regarded his
patients as suffering from measles and treated them in
accordance, but that on the same evening he had reason to
believe the cases were small-pox and certified accordingly.
After an hours sitting, during which many incidental subjects
were discussed, the meeting closed.
The secretary of the Local Board of Health (Mr. C.W. Rocher)
requests school-masters to intimate to him day by day the
names and residences of children absent from their
respective schools.
With respect to the patient Wm. Smith, who is under
treatment at the Don, we learn from the North-Western
Chronicle that the man is about 40 years of age, and does
not show marks of vaccination.
He visited Mrs.
Blanchflowers in Traills-lane, Launceston, on September 17,
and on the same day was in the room with Mrs. Bishop, his
sister, who was in bed with the disease. He was also playing
cards in the hotel for about half an hour. On the following
Tuesday he was in Bishops again, and on the 21 st he went on
to Formby where he landed, and walked across to the Don;
but did not call at any house: On arrival at the Don he felt ill
and at night had shivers with bad headache, severe pain in
the back, and vomiting. On September 23 the eruption
made its appearance. The disease at present is of a mild
form, the temperature and pulse not very high.
It appears that of the persons who have visited Smiths
house, there are at least five who are regarded as suspects
and will be quarantined with their families. Amongst these is
a Mrs. Kelly who resides about a mile to the eastward of the
Don Hotel, and who is the mother of 1(?) children, one of
whom is unvaccinated. Mrs. Kelly visited Smith on Monday
afternoon, and remained in the house about 20 minutes,
which in the opinion of Dr. Dundas, is a sufficient time in
which to contract the disease. The house has therefore been
placed under surveillance, and is guarded by police. A Mrs.
Connolly, who resides next door to Smith, with her husband,
visited him on Monday, and her house is also under guard.
Mrs. Connolly objects somewhat strongly to this proceeding,
44

as she says she has had the small-pox, and is willing to


proceed to the quarantine when ready and nurse Smith
there. As the husband has not had the disease, however, it
was deemed necessary to isolate the house. The next
suspect is a Miss Gibbons, who lives near Mr. Henrys
stores. She also has visited Smith, and has been isolated
with the other members of the house. A Mrs. Lloyd is the
next. She resides at Formby. It has been ascertained that
she visited Smiths house, and instructions have been sent to
the police at Formby to isolate her dwelling. There are
several other suspects about whom enquiries are being
made, but it will be impossible to isolate all unless a further
force of police is supplied. The Chief Inspector, Mr. B. Shaw,
is now in communication with the Government on this
subject.
Arrangements have been made for quarantine quarters at
the Lime Kilns on the Don tramway. Mr. John Henry, who has
taken an energetic lead in the matter, wired to Formby for
carpenters. Prior to this it had been suggested that military
marquees should be borrowed from Government, and Mr.
Bernard Shaw, having been communicated with, a telegram
was received from him to the effect that two marquees with
poles complete would be forwarded by last nights train to
Formby. These will be of the utmost service, owing to the
number of persons to be isolated, and the want of suitable
accommodation for the police guard.
Considerable dissatisfaction is being expressed on the NorthWest Coast that after burning the clothes of Smith, which
were on board, and disinfecting the cabin of the s.s. Devon,
she was allowed to proceed on her trip. It was proposed by
the local authorities to quarantine the steamer, but on
communicating with Hobart a reply was received from the
Inspector of Police to the effect that the burning of the
clothes was a proper course, but that there did not appear to
be any authority for detaining the s.s. Devon. Accordingly,
Sub-Inspector Collett wired to Formby to allow the vessel to
proceed on her voyage, but warning passengers and
intending passengers that they would probably be dealt with
as infected persons and sent to the quarantine hospital at
Launceston. A similar telegram was sent along the coast for
the information of the public. All precautionary measures are
45

being taken at the coast localities, the schools have been


closed, and all public meetings postponed.
A Leven correspondent wired us at noon yesterday:-Great
consternation and indignation is felt on the North-West Coast
owing to the s.s. Devon being allowed to visit the various
ports after having landed the man Smith, who was suffering
from small-pox at the Don. It is believed that two of this
steamers crew are now sickening for the disease. It does
seem a culpable proceeding that the steamer having carried
on her coast trade a whole week with the bundle of infected
clothing on board, should be permitted to go free without
purification.
By Electric Telegraph

Hobart, Sept, 28

The Central Board of Health have decided to issue circulars


to all the local boards calling upon them to hold themselves
in readiness for any outbreak of small-pox in their districts,
and to report the same immediately. They have also decided
to forward to local boards copies of the Gazette extraordinary
issued last evening, containing regulations, etc.
News has been received here that the passengers by the s.s.
Mangans, arriving yesterday at Queenscliff, were inspected
by the Health Officer and compulsorily vaccinated, with the
option of going into quarantine for twenty-one days. This
apparently high-handed action on the part of the Victorian
authorities has given rise to some indignant comment here,
especially as a telegram received on Monday by the Central
Board of Health at Hobart from the Central Board of
Melbourne simply stated that all vessels from Tasmania
would be detained at the quarantine station for inspection.
Miss Lefevre, a trained nurse who offered her services
through Dr. Hardy, left Hobart this morning for Formby, and
will proceed thence to the Don to nurse the small-pox patient
there. She will act under the directions of Dr. Dundas, who is
in attendance on the patient.
Emu Bay, Sept 28
46

The arrival of the steamer Devon this morning was the cause
of much commotion. The leading residents communicated
with the Stipendiary Magistrate and Superintendent of Police,
and meanwhile a boat had put off from the steamer, but was
prevented from landing by the Harbour Master instructed by
the Master Warden, and a constable was told to keep guard
at the wharf.
A telegram has been received from Mr. Webb, of the Leven,
stating that it is believed another case of small-pox is now on
board the Devon, and this has caused great excitement. The
wife of the steward, it appears, is a washerwoman on the
township.
Early this evening the Stipendiary Magistrate received a
telegram from the headquarters at Hobart to quarantine the
Devon till further orders.
The Launceston Examiner Friday September 30th 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The patients at the quarantine station are doing as well as
can be expected, with the exception of two cases. Harry
Watson, a child two years old, is reported as suffering
yesterday from severe confluent small-pox, and had passed a
restless night. Stuart R. Watson, a baby, brother of the
above, three months old, yesterday showed signs of smallpox on the face and chest, and was removed into the smallpox ward.
The hospital arrangements at the station are gradually
working smoothly and efficiently. The cooking kitchen was
pointed out in a previous issue as being in too close proximity
to the wards. Yesterday it was removed to the rear of the
medical officers quarters, to be as far out of infectious reach
as was conveniently possible.
A telegram was received yesterday by Mr. H.N. Taylor, Public
Works Inspector, from the Minister of Lands and Works,
instructing him to thank Mr. W.C. Grubb for his valuable aid in
connection with housing the police at the quarantine station.
The arrangements suggested were approved by the
47

department.
Quarters for the police are being rapidly
adapted and will be completed today.
Four special constables were sworn in yesterday morning to
complete the staff which the Superintendent of the Police
required to provide three relays of eight hours each. An
attempt was made early yesterday morning by one of the
men employed on the station to escape, but he was
prevented doing so by one of the constables on duty.
A formal notice will be issued by his Worship the Mayor this
morning to prevent persons under pain of penalty loitering in
the vicinity of isolated premises.
We are requested to state that the suspects are greatly
obliged for appropriate presents sent by Messrs. G.T. Collins,
R.F. Irvine; 24 jubilee cakes from Mr. S.J. Sutton, and a parcel
of books from Mrs. Alfred Green. Other donations will be
gladly received.
Dr. Murphy, who has been confined to his room since the 23 rd
inst. with an attack of acute muscular rheumatism, was able
to be out for a short time yesterday afternoon. He states he
still holds the opinion that the cases of Mrs. Blanchflower and
Mrs. Bishop, which were in the first instance treated by him,
were chicken pox, though he admits the weight of evidence is
against him. Now that he is about again Dr. Murphy will state
his views on these cases fully to the Local Board of Health.
The following telegram was received from our Emu Bay
correspondent yesterday evening that the s.s. Devon has
been ordered to the quarantine station near Middle Island in
the River Tamar.
Our Longford correspondent writes yesterday:-Two of our local
medicos, I hear, are doing a very fair vaccination business,
one operating yesterday afternoon upon about 20 persons,
while another was waited upon this morning by a number of
adults (including two members of the Local Board of Health)
who had decided once again to submit themselves to the
inoculating process. The most stupid rumour out here was
that our agricultural show would be postponed in
consequence of the outbreak of small-pox in Launceston.
48

Upon making enquiry to-day I found there was no foundation


for such a silly report, neither would such a course be
necessary. True, with fine weather, there is always a very
large gathering at the show, but it is in the open air, and
Longford, so far, is certainly not an infected district;
besides to postpone now would, so to speak, unnecessarily
throw much, if not all, machinery out of gear.
The Launceston Examiner

Saturday October 1, 1887

Both the patients and suspects at the quarantine station are


reported yesterday as doing fairly well. Harry Watson, a
child, who on the previous day was stated to be suffering in
the severe confluent stage was slightly better yesterday.
Stuart R. Watson, a baby brother, who was passed into the
hospital on Thursday as having showed signs of small-pox,
had developed yesterday into the discrete stage. A suspect,
Ann Clark, was suffering yesterday from a severe attack of
bronchitis.
We understand that yesterday Messrs. Ditcham Bros. Sent
down a set of skittles, balls, and frame of their own
manufacture for the use of the suspects.
Yesterday saw the completion of the fitting up of the quarters
for the twelve constables now on duty. There are three
compartments, two for sleeping purposes containing six
fitted bunks (bed-steads being found unsuitable), and one as
store-room and for cooking purposes. A cook was secured
yesterday, ample provisions were sent out, and the initiatory
effort of the culinary department was afternoon tea.
Our Hobart correspondent wired last night that the Central
Board of Health had received the following during yesterday
from Mr. John Henry, of the Don Smith is doing well;
Smiths family all reported well this morning. No other case
reported in this neighbourhood.
Yesterday morning at 9.30, we received a telegram from our
George Town correspondent, as follows:- Steamer Devon
brought up at Bryants Bay awaiting Health Officer. Doctor
Richardson, Health Officer, refused to go. Dr. Morris declines
49

to act without instructions from Government. Dr. Cotterell,


of Launceston, yesterday morning received instructions from
the Chairman of the Local Board of Health to proceed to
Bryants Bay by the tug and inspect the s.s. Devon. The
doctor took with him a quantity of disinfectants and
thoroughly fumigated the steamer in every respect, besides
vaccinating all the men. He found no symptoms of sickness
on board, and considered the men all in good health. Dr.
Cotterell changed his clothes on shore, and caused those he
used while on board to be buried in the river, besides
subjecting himself to a thorough fumigation.
Mr. Webb of the Leven, writes us that he did not telegraph to
Emu Bay, as reported, that it was believed that another case
of small-pox had occurred on board the Devon first because
he did not know that another case was suspected; and
secondly because he was not aware that the steward was
married; if the latter, his wife does not reside at Ulverstone.
We are glad that Mr. Webb has put this matter right so
promptly, but we are quite sure our Burnie correspondent has
been misinformed, for he is too cautious to speak
unadvisedly.
THERE IS A PIECE TO GO IN HERE BY TELEGRAPH FROM
HOBART NEED TO COPY AT LIBRARY AGAIN SATURDAY OCT
1ST
The Launceston Examiner Monday October 3, 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The following bulletin was issued yesterday respecting the
patients at the quarantine station. It will be seen that there
is no change of importance in their condition: - Patients
Thomas Hawkins, G. Blanchflower, Adye Blanchflower, Mary
Ann White, Margaret Bishop, Annie Blanchflower, all
convalescent; William Bishop doing well; H.R. Murray, slightly
better; Harry Watson, restless night, slightly worse; George
Pearce, no worse; S.R. Watson, slightly better; Ann Clarke,
improving;
Sarah Ransley, Harriet Pearson, Elizabeth
Watson, Maud Bishop, doing well; William Bishop, jun., still
confined to bed, no sign of eruption; Celia Hines, sign of
50

primary eruption. Suspects Fredk. Miller, George Holkam,


Frank Johnston, William Barrett, Christina Jansen, Joseph
Blanchflower, George Bishop, all keeping well. John Charles
Hines, Edith Kate Hines, Wm. Robert Hines, all placed in
isolated wards.
The following patients have been removed to the station
since our last report:- On Saturday Mrs. Cecilia Hines and her
three children were removed to the station, Mrs. Hines as a
patient and the children as suspects. Mrs. Hines lived in
Radfords-row William-street, and last Tuesday was suspected
of being affected.
Subsequent symptoms induced the
authorities to remove herself and family. Yesterday afternoon
Mrs. Bennett and her child, a boy five years old, were
conveyed to the station, the child being considered a patient
and its mother a suspect. The child was taken ill at school on
Thursday, and has since developed the disease.
Mrs.
Bennetts house in Lower Charles-street is under police guard
until to-day, when the two other inmates of the house, a
young woman and a younger child, will be removed. Mr.
Bennett, the husband, is on board the ketch Strathmore.
The following houses are now under police surveillance:- Mrs.
White, Frederick-street; Mrs. King, Tamar-street, and the
adjoining Railway Boarding House kept by Mr. J. Wilkins, at
the corner of Cameron and Tamar streets, and the residence
of Mr. W.L. Sidebottom, Elphin-road, where Mrs. King has
been nursing; Mr. George Bennett, Lower Charles-street; and
three cottages in Radfords row, William-street.
The
supposed infection in all these cases is traced back to
connection with the Pearsons and Blanchflowers cases. Mr.
Blanchflowers children, who has since developed the
disease, and Mrs. Hines assisted in nursing at Mrs. Pearsons.
Mr Superintendant Armstrong received instructions on
Saturday from the Inspector of Police to have all the local
constables vaccinated, especially those in charge at the
quarantine.
Unfortunately
the
Hospital
Surgeon
Superintendent has exhausted his stock of lymph, but
expects a further supply tomorrow.
Some consternation was caused in town on Saturday, when it
became known that the authorities had ordered the s.s.
51

Wakefield to be quarantined. The steamer arrived in the


river on Saturday forenoon. At five oclock in the afternoon
Sub-Inspector Scott delivered his instructions to Captain
McNair to return to Bryants Bay, and there await medical
inspection. Dr. Cotterell went down in the tug yesterday on
the condition of King, mate of the steamer, and husband of
Mrs. King, whose house in Tamar-street was isolated on
Saturday.
There are several passengers on board the
Wakefield en route from the West and North-West ports.
The sub-committee, consisting of the Mayor and Messrs.
Butoon and Sutton, appointed by the Local Board of Health
on Wednesday evening last met on Saturday evening. They
were instructed to bring up a recommendation for amending
the Public Health Act in the direction of giving power to the
local boards to act promptly in sudden outbreaks of disease.
The sub-committee decided to recommend the following
items to be laid before the Local Board of Health at their
meeting this afternoon - That power should be given to local
boards in cases of emergency to act independently of the
Central Board; the power to include isolation of houses and
persons, and if need be make arrests in case of persons
obstructing; power to levy a sanitary rate; provision to give
compensation to persons obliged to remove noxious trades.
The sub-committee further recommended that the
Government should immediately secure a site for the
erection of a quarantine hospital and necessary buildings.
We understand that Dr. Murphy, on Saturday, sent a lengthy
report to the Board of Health, respecting the cases of
Blanchflower and Bishop which were under his care until the
23rd ult. Dr. Murphy has stated that but for his illness he
would have had the patients in question well in a week, and
on no account would have surrendered them into other
hands. With respect to the pronounced opinions volunteered
by medical men he maintains that no one could diagnose the
disease of small-pox by casual observation. It was necessary
to see the disease and compare the different stages of
development. He does not dispute that a case of aggravated
chicken-pox would bear resemblance to small-pox at some
stages of comparison. With respect to the case of Mrs.
Blanchflower, who was the first patient, he states he was not
off his guard, he was on the alert, and carefully watched
52

every phase of the disease. This case had some suspicious


features, but in conversation with Mrs. White respecting Mrs.
Blanchflower he pointed out to her the distinctive features
between the two diseases. In Mrs. Blanchflowers case there
were no rigours nor disquiet nor delirium, no shotty feeling
underneath the skin, and no scab.
The constitutional
symptoms in the suppuration stages were nil. Dr. Murphy
maintains that the rash in Mrs. Blanchflowers case did not
correspond with small-pox in appearance, conbents,
surrounding skin, depressed centres, and mode of accession,
nor did it scab, but on the contrary, peeled off on leaving. Dr.
Murphy points out the complaints for which he was treating
Mrs. Blanchflowers children, and maintains that in these
cases and in those of Bishops family, the whole tenor of the
symptoms - in rash, temperature, and other features - was
entirely inconsistent with small-pox in any stage.
Dr. Pike wishes the public to know that he does not visit the
quarantine patients, but attends solely to those in town.
The s.s. Mangana leaves Launceston today at the advertised
time, but with mails only, she will take no passengers. She
will proceed to Queenscliff, and return from there with mails
on Tuesday. The s.s. Pateena will not arrive on Tuesday. The
s.s. Flinders leaves Melbourne to-day with mails and
passengers, including many - perhaps all - of those who left
here on Thursday last.
The Launceston Examiner Tuesday October 4th, 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The following bulletin was issued yesterday respecting the
condition of the patients and suspects at the quarantine
station.
It will be seen that there is no vital change
concerning the previous confines Alfred Bennett), removed
with his mother on Sunday afternoon to the station, is
reported suffering from confluent small-pox.
Patients Thomas Hawkins, George Blanchflower, Adye Blanchflower,
Mary J. White, Annie Blanchflower, Margaret Bishop, all
convalescent, and shifted into the tent from the small-pox
ward. William Bishop, convalescent. Harry Watson rather
worse. S.R. Watson slightly worse. Ann Clarke improving.
53

Sarah Ransley, Harriet Pearson, William R. Hines, Elizabeth


Watson, Maud Bishop, Edith K. Hines, all keeping well. Alfred
Bennett, confluent small-pox. William Bishop jun., no sign of
eruption, very feverish, with high temperature; Cecilia Hines,
restless night, feverish, not so well. Suspects - Frederick
Miller, Geo. Holkam, Frank Johnson, William Barrett, Christian
Janson, Joseph Blanchflower, George Bishop, John Chas. Hines
all keeping well. Mary A. Bennett doing well.
There were no fresh cases reported yesterday and no further
removals.
Dr. Coterell returned from an inspection on the s.s. Wakefield
at Bryants Bay late on Sunday evening and reported all well
on board. The primary desideratum he found to be an
adequate supply of food. As the crew numbers ten men and
there are twelve passengers on board, this constitutes a
serious matter. Mr. J. Williams, the agent, has arranged to
send a supply of food to-day, per the s.s. Indignant, which will
be landed on the beach and taken on board by the crew. Is it
an oversight that the Wakefields mails have not yet reached
town?
The ketch Strathmore was yesterday quarantined at the
Market Wharf, in consequence of the connection of G.
Bennett with the outbreak of the disease in the case of his
boy. It is stated that Bennett defied the surveillance of the
police and escaped from his isolated house to the ketch. He
was apprehended and taken back to the house, but
subsequently put on board. The ketch will be towed down to
Bryants Bay by the tug at noon to-day, and put into
quarantine there.
No symptoms of any infection having appeared on board the
Devon, she will be released on Thursday next. Dr. Cotterell
will visit the vessel to-morrow, and unless something
unexpected happens, will grant a clean bill of health, and on
Thursday morning, she will proceed direct from Bryants Bay
to Emu Bay.
It has been represented that some of the isolated houses are
at a disadvantage with respect to food supply. This was
specially so with the case of the Railway Boarding house in
54

Tamar-street, and we believe arrangements have been made


to utilise the capital method of distribution observed by the
Benevolent Society. We are requested to state that a special
meeting of the committee of the Launceston Benevolent
Society will be held at 4.30 p.m. today to consider
arrangements made with the Local Board of Health to supply
the inmates of several isolated families with rations at the
expense of the Local Board.
Our Longford correspondent writes on Monday:
I understand that one of our medicos (Dr Appleyard),
vaccinated several calves on Saturday last for the purpose of
obtaining a good supply of vaccine lymph.

55

New Method of Treating Smallpox


The following are the directions given by Dr. ??? (blow up
article in Examiner Tues Oct 4, 1887.
PIECE MISSING HERE FOR TUESDAY 4TH OCTOBER, 1887
The Launceston Examiner, Wednesday 5th October
1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
Another child-death occurred at the quarantine station early
yesterday morning. Harry Watson, aged one year and eleven
months, was the son of Nathaniel Watson, who died on the
24th alt., and of Elizabeth Watson, who with her infant child is
at the station. The child was sent to a friends house, Mrs.
White, in Frederick-street, and was returned to its home from
there on the 26th alt having become sickly, and has therefore
been ill ten days. The boy, who was not vaccinated, died at
half past six in the morning, and was interred at two oclock
in the afternoon at the station, Archdeacon Hales reading the
burial service.
A case which has for the past few days been under the notice
of the authorities was yesterday afternoon removed from the
bark Lanoma to the quarantine station. A seaman named
Milligan, who came out from England with the bark, and
would have been discharged on Monday last, was suspected,
and on the appearance of certain symptoms was removed as
stated. It is conjectured that this case has some connection
with Bennetts - Mrs. Bennett having it is stated, washed
Milligans clothes.
There is no change reported with respect to the town isolated
houses.
The following was yesterdays bulletin: Patients - Thomas
Hawkins, Geo. Blanchflower, Adye Blanchflower, Mary J.
White, Anne Blanchflower, Margaret Bishop, William Bishop
doing well; Harry Watson, died 6.30 a.m. S.R. Watson getting
on as well as can be expected, Ann Clark, improving; Sarah
56

Ransley, Harriet Pearson, W.R. Hines, Elizabeth Watson, Maud


Bishop, Edith R. Hines, keeping well; Wm. Bishop junr.,
shifted into small-pox ward, eruption appearing all over body,
slightly delirious, a little better than yesterday; Cecilia Hines,
vomiting, eruption appearing all over body, rather worse;
Charles Hines, admitted yesterday, doing well. Suspects - F.
Miller, G. Holkam, F. Johnson, W. Barrett, O. Jansen, J.
Blanchflower, G. Bishop, J.C. Hines, all keeping well. Alfred
Barrett doing well. Mary A Bennett keeping well.
The bark Lanoma was isolated yesterday and was thoroughly
disinfected and was ordered to the quarantine at Bryants
Bay. She has a crew of 17. The bark is taking in ballast, and
will probably proceed to-day.
The ketch Strathmore was towed down to quarantine by the
tug yesterday afternoon. Dr. Pike vaccinated her crew of five
men before starting.
The Devon is expected here to-day for inspection by the
Health Officer, Dr. Pike. This course has been arranged
instead of a medical officer going to Bryants Bay as
previously stated. She will be brought up at Town Point, and
in the event of receiving a clean bill of health, of which there
is no doubt, she will leave at midnight direct for Emu Bay to
load with tin ore from Mount Bischoff, and return here with
despatch.
At the special meeting of the Executive Committee of the
Launceston Benevolent Society held yesterday afternoon, Mr.
E..J. Ditcham stated that the Mayor (Mr. Robert Carter) had
represented to him that the persons in several of the houses
isolated in consequence of the outbreak of small-pox were
without food, and asked him what could be done in the
matter. Sergeant Green subsequently spoke to him and said
the lodgers in the Railway Boarding House had declared they
would break out if they did not get some food. He (Mr.
Ditcham) sent half a sheep to the house, the Mayor
recommending that he should supply them with vegetables;
the Mayor had asked him if he would assist in the matter of
providing provisions and he acquiesced.
He therefore
thought it his duty to call the meeting that day in order to
have his action confirmed. Mr. Farrelly asked who was to pay
57

for the provisions. Mr Ditcham said the Local Board of Health


had offered to pay for everything. Mr. Farrelly then moved
that the matter be left in the hands of the chairman and
secretary to deal with all the cases. Mr. Babington seconded
the motion, which was carried unanimously.
We understand that a meeting of the Local Board of Health
will be held at 8 oclock this afternoon to meet the Chief
Secretary, hon. P.O. Fysh.
The Town Clerk acknowledges the receipt of donations for the
quarantine station. Books and papers from Miss Thomson, of
Cormiston, Messrs. Bothamley, Heath, Barton, Stanley
Browne, and lollies from Mrs. S.J. Sutton.
The outbreak of small-pox in Tasmania (says the Argus)
was further considered by the Central Board of Health on
Friday last, when it was unanimously decided that all
passengers arriving from Tasmania should be subjected to 16
days quarantine. The President (Mr. A.P. Akehurst) pointed
out that matters now were a much more serious aspect than
they did on Monday, when the board last met. Only four
cases of small-pox were then reported from Launceston, and
there was no reason to suppose that the outbreak was other
than a purely local one. Thirteen cases of the disease had
now been developed, and it transpired that small-pox had
actually existed in Launceston for at least three or four weeks
before any intimation of it was given to the public. The Union
Companys s.s. Mararoa, from New Zealand via Hobart, and
the Tasmanian Steam Navigation Companys s.s. Flinders,
from Launceston, were lying at the Heads awaiting the
decision of the board. The Mararoa had 100 passengers, 15
of whom were from Hobart, and the Flinders brought 70
passengers from Launceston. The whole of these passengers
will now have either to submit to a detention of 15 days at
the quarantine station, or return to the port from which they
came. Mr. C.R. Blackett appeared inclined to relax the
quarantine regulation somewhat in the case of vessels upon
which no signs of infection could be discovered, but it was
pointed out by the medical members of the board that a
medical officer might be quite unable to detect anything
wrong with a patient who a week afterwards would develop
small-pox.
58

Our Hobart correspondent telegraphed yesterday:-A telegram


received here from Melbourne states that great indignation is
expressed there at the Tasmanian authorities not disclosing
the full extent of the small-pox outbreak.
By Electric Telegraph

Stanley, Oct. 3

The two persons, Charles Blizzard and William Jones, who


have been detained in quarantine, are in perfect health, and
may shortly look for release. They are supplied with every
requisite, including books, newspapers, etc., supplied by the
good Samaritans, and being intelligent men they pass the
time more agreeably than might be expected under such
peculiar circumstances. The general health of the district is
good, and fortunately there are no measles to create a panic.
[The above message was delayed owing to an interruption to
the line.-Ed.]
Campbell Town

Oct 4

A meeting of the Local Board of Health was held to-day in


order to be prepared should any outbreak of small-pox occur
in the district, and it was decided to secure three tents from
the Government for the purpose of isolating any patients
should such a course be necessary at any time.
The Launceston Examiner
SMALL-POX OUTBREAK

Thursday 6 Oct 1887

With the following exceptions the confinees at the quarantine


station are all doing ell. William Bishop, junr., restless night,
worse than yesterday. Cecilia Hines, vomiting, still very bad,
Alfred Bennett, same as yesterday. James Milligan, small-pox
in primary stages.
Three family removals were made yesterday to the station,
including twelve persons, viz.:-Samuel Watson, cab-driver,
living in Frederick-street, next to the Infant School, his wife
and four children. Watson is a brother of the deceased,
Nathaniel Watson, the first victim, and both he and his wife
were visitors at his brothers house up to a few hours of his
59

death. Mrs Watson sickened on Tuesday, as was very weak


and feverish when removed yesterday afternoon. She is the
only patient. Watson and their family (a girl nine years old
and three boys older, two having been at work) were
removed as suspects. It is due to Watson to state that he
and his wife have remained secluded in their house since
they became aware of any risk of infection. Another removal
was that of the household of James Rowe, a brother-in-law of
the Watsons. An infant child of Rowes (a girl nine months
old, died early yesterday morning from water on the brain.
Another child (a boy between two and three years of age)
sickened of small-pox yesterday, and it was decided to inter
the other child at Mowbray. The whole family were then
removed, consisting, besides the sick child, of Rowe, his wife,
and old Mrs. Watson, the mother of the Watsons, and motherin-law of Rowe. A young woman who has been living at G.
Bennetts, Lower Charles-street, with the youngest child of
Bennetts since the removal of Mrs Bennett and her sick
child, were removed to Mowbray, and the house closed.
There was no change in the isolated houses yesterday,
although one residence was added, that of John Watson, who
with his wife lives in a block of one story wooden cottages in
Cameron-street, near Martinis buildings. This action was
taken in consequence of contact with Rowes family.
In consequence of the outbreak at Watsons and Bennetts
the state school in Frederick-street and Miss Lambs school,
near the Market Green, are temporarily closed.
Taking advantage of the temporary adjournment of
Parliament, the Hon the Premier came over to Launceston
yesterday and took the opportunity to meet the Local Board
of Health and as many members of the medical profession as
could attend in the afternoon at the Town Hall. In addition to
the board, Drs. Thompson, Hallowes, Gutteridge and Cotterell
were present. The interview lasted nearly two hours, and
evidenced the Government, the Central Board and the Local
Board, and the medical practitioners were quite in accord on
all points and resolved to put forth every effort to stamp out
the disease.

60

A report having been received that some cases of eruptive


disease - supposed to be chicken-pox - had occurred at
Ringarooma, the Premier telegraphed to Dr. Richardson
enquiring if they had come under his observation, and if so to
wire back their history and symptoms. In the course of the
evening Mr. Fysh received a reply from Dr. Richardson to the
effect that no such cases had come under his notice. Further
enquiry will, however, be made as it is possible medical aid
may not have been called in.
The Port Officer Dr. Thompson boarded the s.s. Devon at
Town Point yesterday afternoon and after inspection gave her
a clean bill of health. She took on board a supply of coal, and
left at midnight for Emu Bay direct. We understand the
master of the tug who took out the doctor and a man to
fumigate the vessel would not allow the latter to return in
her, although the man had not been in contact with anyone
on board.
We understand that as a result of correspondence with the
Chief Secretary, who has decided that all sea-going or
coastal vessels must be thoroughly inspected and receive a
clean bill of health, the Port Officer has decided that he will
not pass any boat unless those on board are re-vaccinated.
To give effect to this arrangement and in order to prevent
detention on arrival at their destination, the masters of all
vessels proceeding from Launceston to coast ports are
requested to give notice at the Marine Board office, so that
the medical officer of the port may inspect the Vessels and
grant clean bills of health or otherwise.
The Melbourne Daily Telegraph on Friday last devotes a
leading article to the outbreak of small-pox in Launceston, in
which the following opinions are expressed:-The most
curious feature of the Launceston case is the apparently
indigenous nature of the outbreak. Of course, this is not
really so, for no point has been better determined in medical
science than what we may call, for want of a better term, the
infectious source of small-pox. Each case has a well defined
history, though it is not easy in all instances to trace the
connection through all its links. Up to the present the
Launceston authorities do not appear to have been able to
discover any satisfactory explanation of this manifestation. It
61

is very unfortunate thing that in Tasmania compulsory


vaccination has been greatly neglected. The authorities
have been dependent even for the supply of lymph in this
emergency on Melbourne and Sydney.
From our Victorian files we learn that the Tasmanian vessels
now in quarantine are the steamers Mararoa and Flinders,
the schooners Falcon and Isabel from Hobart, and the ketch
Wellington from Launceston. The Mararoa has amongst her
cargo six or seven tons of oysters from New Zealand, and
though the passengers have been doing their best to get rid
of them, the bulk of the consignment will have to be shifted
overboard, or it may create something worse than the smallpox scare. The 100 passengers on board the Mararoa are
very sore against the Victorian authorities for their enforced
delay, as all but 15 are from new Zealand, and the vessel
only stayed a few hours at Hobart. The Age says:-To
describe the passengers state of mind is out of the question,
and must be left to the imagination. Not only do they curse
the country, but everything else pretty nearly back to the
day of their birth, and they look upon the action of the
Victorian Government as little less than fiendish, and can find
no terms too strong in which to express their ideas. With a
view to keeping order, presumably, a constable has been
placed on board both the Mararoa and Flinders by the
Melbourne police authorities though the cause of law and
order is not likely to need their assistance. The passengers
on board the Flinders are not much better, and they not only
grumble but abuse the doctor to his face. It is stated there
are some half-dozen individuals who have assumed a special
mission to worry the doctor, and the method adopted of
showing defiance to the Health Officer is in an all round
refusal on both vessels to be vaccinated. Vaccination is not
compulsory. When Dr. Browning endeavoured to induce the
passengers to be vaccinated, a sea lawyer rose up and
defied the doctor to vaccinate him, and turning to the other
passengers harangued them not to submit to the process. In
the temper the people are in on the Flinders, the suggestion
was received with favour, if only to show their contempt for
Victorian authority. Consequently, so far as vaccination is
concerned, the doctors efforts have resulted in the
inoculation of one boy, and even this trophy was only secured
at the expense of considerable persuasion. The state of
62

health on both steamers is excellent, and the probabilities of


any small-pox arising are regarded by the Health Officer as
very small. The latest grumble on both steamers has been
that they are not allowed to go ashore into the quarantine
station, but the agents have as yet made no sign of providing
for their passengers internal needs ashore. The Government
finds nothing of that kind, and although it may not take long
to get the cooking utensils ready, it nevertheless looks at
present rather shaky about the victuals. The reply sent on
Monday last by the Central Board to a telegraphic petition
from the Mararoa passengers was as follows:-The Central
Board of Health greatly regrets loss and inconvenience
caused by detention of the Mararoa and of the passengers,
but the outbreak of small-pox in Tasmania, and the
unchecked progress of the disease for three weeks or more
(of which this board was not made aware) compelled the
course which has been taken in order to protect Victoria and
the adjoining colonies of New South Wales and South
Australia. Both these colonies are quarantining passengers
from Tasmania in a similar way. Had the first case been
properly recognised and instant steps taken by the
Tasmanian authorities, the present trouble might have been
avoided.
During the three or four weeks referred to
considerable communication was going on between
Launceston and Hobart, and therefore no distinction can be
drawn in favour of the latter place. The board is glad to learn
that no illness exists at present on the Mararoa. Dr. Browning
has reported to that effect already, and the detention is not
due to any statement from him, but is solely the result of
information of what has happened in Tasmania. It appears
that from the first reports to hand the Victorian Central Board
were under the impression that the outbreak was of a sudden
character, that its first appearance had been promptly
discovered and precautions which were deemed sufficient
and thorough taken to isolate the cases and those persons
who were known to have been in immediate contact with the
sufferers. Under these circumstances it was thought by the
Central Board that the safety of Victoria would be secured by
merely detaining at the Heads vessels from Tasmanian ports
for medical inspection. The Mangana, Moreton, and Southern
Cross were permitted to come up to Melbourne and land their
passengers, about 105 in all, but when the Board learnt that
the disease had probably been in existence in Launceston for
63

three weeks before it was officially reported they considered


more stringent measures necessary. We may, however, state
that the fears of the Victorian authorities, though perfectly
natural, are probably groundless, since it is now evident that
but one centre of contagion exists and the persons who have
been in contact with that centre have not belonged to what
may be termed the travelling public. All belong to the
working classes, and though a number of infected and
suspected persons have not been removed to the quarantine
station or isolated, still the circle is confined to a very small
area, and to but a limited section of the community of
Launceston. The only case that escaped outside Launceston
that at the Don was a very mild form of the disease, and
was so promptly and effectually isolated that the infection
has not spread on the coast.
By Electric Telegraph
Hobart, Oct 5
A committee meeting of the Central Board of Health was held
last evening when Dr Murphys report was under
consideration, other communications were also considered,
and after consideration the board came to the following
resolution. That this board, considering the evidence laid
before it as regards the outbreak of an infectious disease in
Launceston, is satisfied that the disease is undoubtedly
small-pox, but as there is a conflict of opinion in Launceston,
they would suggest to the Chief Secretary, the advisableness
of obtaining a report from a medical expert to be selected by
the Central Board of Health of Victoria. The board further
resolved to again urge upon the Government the necessity of
immediately carrying out the provisions of the Vaccination
Act.
The President of the Central Board of Health has received the
following cablegram from the Sydney Board The following
resolution was passed this day: - The board being now in
possession of full information regarding the outbreak of
small-pox at Launceston, and the measures of precaution
taken by the health authorities of Tasmania to isolate the sick
and prevent the spread of disease, feel justified in
suspending their instructions that all vessels from Tasmania
64

are to be quarantined for observation at the quarantine


station. The board direct that all vessels arriving from
Tasmania shall be medically inspected at the entrance of the
port and if the passengers and crew are found to be
absolutely free from any suspicion of infectious sickness,
pratique may be granted in the usual way. Should it appear
at any future time that the outbreak in Tasmania is assuming
a more serious character, the board may, however, consider
it necessary to revert to their former instructions by which all
vessels from Tasmania were detained at the quarantine
station for observation.
It is expected that the health
authorities in Tasmania will cause a careful medical
inspection to be made of the passengers and crews
individually of every vessel about to sail, satisfying
themselves that every person on board is in perfect health,
and furnishing
LAST FEW SENTENCES
LIBRARY

TO BE INSERTED BURNE

The Launceston Examiner Friday 7 October, 1887


SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The following items of change were notified in yesterdays
bulletin:- William bishop, jun., slightly better; Cecilia Hines,
improved since the previous day; George Bishop, very
feverish, no signs of eruption. Alfred Bennett, restless night,
otherwise doing well. All the other confinees are reported
doing well.
Since those notified in yesterdays issue there have been
three residents isolated. Mrs. Bakers lodging-house, Lower
Charles-street, close to Bennetts, and isolated because of
communication with Bennetts household; J. Watson, a
married man residing on the Sandhill, and eldest son of
Samuel Watson (who with his family was removed to the
station on Wednesday.
The third is Benjamin Larters
residence in Lower George-street, and contains Larter, his
wife, two children, a female visitor, and a male lodger. It
appears that Larter has been treated for rheumatic pains, but
grew worse.
At 5 oclock yesterday a medical man
pronounced the case small-pox, which was confirmed by Dr.
65

Pike, who was sent for. This family will be removed to the
station today, Larter as a patient and the rest as suspects.
The back yards of Larters house and those of Watson (who
died) and Blanchflowers are contiguous.
The infant child of James Rowe, which died early on
Wednesday morning, was interred at Mowbray yesterday,
Archdeacon Hales reading the service.
Yesterday the Port Health Officer (Dr. Thompson) gave the
steamers Mangana, for Melbourne and Dorset for Boobyalla a
clean bill of health.
The Surgeon-Superintendent of the hospital wishes it to be
known, so as to prevent disappointment and save fruitless
journeys to the hospital, that he has no lymph at present, but
is endeavouring to secure a supply, which he will duly notify.
The Town Clerk wishes us to state he has received for the
quarantine patients etc., books and newspapers from Messrs.
Whitefoord, Nicholson, Coombes, Blackburn, Murrell, and
Petterd, a parcel of fish from Mr. W. Johnson. The Town Clerk
wishes it to be known that people delivering goods do not go
near the actual ground reserved for patients and others.
Through the courtesy of the Chief Secretary we learn the
following cable-gram was received yesterday from the
Premier of Victoria:-Mararoa and Southern Cross passengers
will be released this evening under certain restrictions.
There being two fresh cases at Launceston decision
postposed as to that port. Will wire to-morrow.
The Launceston Examiner Saturday 8 October, 1887
The following items of change respecting the patients at the
quarantine station were notified yesterday:-William Bishop,
jun., restless night; very delirious, but much better this
morning. Cecilia Hines, yesternight delirious; covered with
eruptions; very bad. George Bishop, recovering from fog
fever. Alfred Bennett, very delirious during night; very bad.
James Milligan, primary small-pox; doing well. Susannah
Watson, primary small-pox; doing as well as can be expected.
66

There was no change yesterday in respect to the isolated


houses.
The inmates of Benjamin Larters residence, Lower Georgestreet, were removed to Mowbray yesterday evening. The
patient Larter was taken by the ambulance first; it then
returned for Mrs. Larter, their two young children, both girls,
Mrs. Metcalfe, a visitor from Sydney and sister to Mrs. Larter,
and two male lodgers. It seems that one of the latter worked
at a large establishment in town up to Thursday night,
although he was aware that Later was sickening for the
disease. He did not go to work yesterday, feeling perhaps
some qualms of conscience, and after wandering about the
town all day concluded the best policy was to return to the
house and be quarantined with the rest of the house-hold.
We believe that a man under suspicion, who has been
lodging in town, was yesterday arrested in the country, and
duly quarantined at the station. It seems that the man
stayed at a hotel in the vicinity of the infected portion of the
town, and with some members of the family of the proprietor
removed into the suburbs, presumably to escape suspicion.
For some reason the sick man went into the country, the
secret got out, and he was brought to town yesterday as
stated.
Consequent on the large number of persons being
quarantined in connection with individual outbreaks, the
accommodation at the station became somewhat strained,
but this was relieved yesterday by a quantity of tents and
bedding being sent out.
The Port Health Officer, Dr. Thompson, yesterday gave the
ketch Korunnah, for Hobart, a clean bill of health, and this
morning at 7 oclock will inspect the s.s. Wakefield.
Even the grim small-pox epidemic is not without its
humorous incidents. One of these did a lady customer at the
counter of the Homoeopathic Pharmacy on Thursday the
good a Hearty laugh is known to do as a preventive of
disease. It was thus:-A small boy, with a half-pint jug and a
sixpence, came in breathlessly, and reaching them as far
67

towards the proprietor as his stature and little arms


permitted, called out in the shrill tones of childhood and in
gasps Please mo-mother, wan-wants six-pennorth o calf
lymph, to-vaccinate the baby.
We presume the good mother had read the mutilated
message re ten pounds (points) of the precious virus having
been sent from Hobart some days ago, and seeing the
Pharmacy advertisement Pure calf lymph, etc., thought it
the receptacle of the whole invoiced and the best place for a
good six-pennorth.
We must go home for news.
The Christian Colonist
(Adelaide), Sept 30, informs the world small-pox has broken
out in Hobart. Six cases have occurred, one of which has
proved fatal. A fourth death from small-pox has occurred at
Hobart; fourteen other suspected cases have been sent to
quarantine.
The small-pox cases in Tasmania have
increased to eight, and another death has occurred. If the
remaining items of the column under the heading Epitome
of general news are as accurate as these cited the secular
press need not fear rivalry.
Our Evandale correspondent writes that the good folks of
that township are much excited at learning that a man who
had been in communication in some way with a house her
prior to its isolation, had walked out of Evandale. On arrival
he encountered Mr. D. Collins, Superintendent of Police, and
informed him of the circumstances, and said he felt ill, or
fancied that he did. He was at once returned to Launceston
in a conveyance in charge of Constable King, who after this
exploit, and in the present mood of the country residents, is
probably doomed to a period of quiet contemplation. No
doubt it was a very thoughtless and improper thing for this
man to do, and his track will have to be vigilantly watched in
consequence, but it by no means follows that contagion has
necessarily been imported to others. By all means let those
who are in possession of facts respecting the movements of
persons suspected of having been in some way in
communication with infection give that information promptly
to the local authorities so that they may take such action as
may be deemed necessary; but we earnestly hope that the
weak and mischievous tendance to funk" will be stoutly
68

resisted. It is unmanly, it is unkind, it is useless, and it is


calculated to aggravate matters in the eyes of our
neighbours. Our correspondent concludes by stating that the
residents are desirous of being vaccinated; but as many poor
people are unable to pay the fee he expresses a hope that
the Government will direct the public vaccinator to visit
Evandale, Lymington, Deddington, and Irish Town.
By Electric Telegraph
Hobart, Oct. 7
In the House of Assembly this afternoon, the Minister of
Lands, before the orders of the day were called on, in order to
allay the public anxiety about the small-pox scare, made the
following statement: The quarantine enforced in New South
Wales has not from the first excluded cargo, and vessels have
been allowed after fumigation to go up to Sydney and
discharge cargo, the crews being removed and placed in the
quarantine station, and the passengers quarantined and
placed under inspection for a short period. The Premier of
New South Wales says we have been misinformed as to the
strictness of the quarantine with the steamers Flinders and
Mararoa, but has now relaxed it, these vessels, with their
passengers, having been released last night after seven or
eight days detention.
The Premier of Victoria wired
yesterday that owing to two new cases having been reported
in Launceston further relaxation could not be at once
determined upon. It is as a consequence of the energetic
action taken in regard to strict isolation of patients that New
South Wales and Victoria have relaxed their quarantine
restrictions. Two new cases, Watsons children, were reported
the day before yesterday, and two more in the same family
to-day, but all the cases in the quarantine station are doing
splendidly, and the Don case is well. The steamers Devon
and Wakefield have been discharged from quarantine without
any further case of small-pox exhibiting. The Lindisfarne Bay
Cottage Hospital and the quarantine station at Barnes Bay
are ready, with a caretaker at both, and an inspector has
been sent to the former to inspect it. The doctors throughout
the colony have been instructed to act as sub-vaccinators.
During the evening the Minister of Lands read the following
telegram received from the Premier of Victoria:-Re small-pox
69

passengers ex Mararoa have been released under certain


conditions as to fumigation and inspection. As regards
Hobart this Government requests that the health authorities
there may be instructed by the Government of Tasmania to
exercise the utmost vigilance in granting a clean bill of health
to vessels for Melbourne, and will not only certify as to the
absence of any symptoms of small-pox, but also that no
passengers from Launceston or its neighbourhood or from
the River Don are on board. If this is done and a specially
endorsed bill of health be brought vessels will be inspected
at the quarantine station by Drs. Browning and Griffith, and if
all is found satisfactory will then be allowed to come up to
Melbourne. With reference to vessels direct from Launceston
the board will again consider that part of the question in a
few days.
The Launceston Examiner Monday 10 October 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The bulletin posted on Saturday respecting the inmates at
the quarantine station stated:-Wm Bishop, jun., restless
night, still very bad. Cecilia Hines, very delirious, kept
getting out of bed during night. James Milligan, primary
small-pox, doing well. Susannah Watson, primary small-pox,
doing well.
Benjamin Larter, suffering from small-pox.
Walter Howard, suffering from fog fever. This last is the
case that was brought in from Evandale, so that our Morven
friends have been needlessly exciting themselves.
Yesterday the bulleting was as follows:- William Bishop, jun.,
restless night, better this morning. Cecilia Hines, very low,
not sleeping. Alfred Bennett, very low. James Milligan,
Susannah Watson, Henry Chick, Samuel Rowe, David Storrer,
and Benjamin Larter have small-pox, but are doing well. S.R.
Watson, now convalescent. The remainder of the patients
and suspects are doing well.
Mr. D. Storrer, undertaker, of St. John-street, who conducted
the interments of the man Watson and the child Spiers, was
reported on Friday evening by his medical attendant as
developing small-pox, and shortly before 2 p.m. on Saturday
70

was removed with his wife to the quarantine station, his


establishment being closed and thoroughly fumigated. The
hour chosen for the removal of the Storrers may have been
unavoidable, but it certainly was not a desirable hour to
select in a business thoroughfare. It has been said that Mr.
Storrer did not use proper precautions after the internments,
but he has assured us that he was thoroughly fumigated. It
would, however, have been more prudent for Mr. Storrer to
have not come prominently under public observation until all
danger of infection was past. On Wednesday last he was
restless and feverish, but on Thursday visited his mother,
who resides at Bridgenorth, West Tamar. On Friday he
became more feverish and that evening his medical
attendant reported him as sickening for small-pox. Although
some of Mr. Storrers workmen who seemed to have a
presentiment their employer had taken the infection, had not
been at work since the previous Tuesday, it was deemed
advisable to isolate all the houses occupied by them or in
which they lodged, and six residences, with all the inmates,
in various parts of the town were therefore placed in charge
of constables. A medical man was despatched yesterday to
the residence of Mrs. Storrer, sen., and this house will also be
isolated.
We may state that the two men who are employed by the
Local Board of Health in doing disinfecting work, etc, are
isolated from their families, and temporarily reside at the iron
shed in William-street.
To meet the emergency which has occurred, 18 special
constables were sworn in before the Mayor on Saturday
evening at 8 oclock, and were soon after told off to duty. It
seems advisable that these plain clothes men should wear
some distinguishing badge while patrolling in front of the
houses, so that pedestrians may keep clear of the isolated
places.
A man named Thorpe, a late lodger at Larters who had been
staying out at Hadspen or Entally for some days, was
reported on Saturday morning to the authorities as a suspect,
and was conveyed in the ambulance wagon to the station.

71

Henry Chick, a well-known footballer, who was employed as a


painter by Messrs. Bennell Brothers and was accused of
connection with an infected house (Rowes), was removed on
Saturday as a patient. In consequence of this Messrs.
Bennell Brothers, in order to avoid even groundless
suspicions have closed their establishment for 14 days,
during which period Mr. John Bettell, who does not reside on
the premises, will attend to all business and work on hand.
The increase in the number of isolated houses has thrown a
large amount of work on the secretary of the Benevolent
Society who has to arrange for food supplies wherever
necessary. A rumour was afloat yesterday that Mr. Fraser had
been isolated, but so far from this being the case he was
doing a hard days work., being on foot from 7 a.m. till about
9 p.m. visiting the various isolated houses, and ascertaining
and supplying their requirements.
The s.s. Wakefield was granted pratique on Saturday morning
by the Port Health Officer, Dr. Thompson, who inspected the
passengers and crew and found all well. The Wakefield has
been eight days in quarantine. Captain McNair was much
mortified at the unfortunate detention of his boat. He had
done the trip from Launceston to the Don, thence to
Macquarie Harbour, Trial Harbour, and the Pieman and back
to Launceston in four days, and after such an expeditious
performance to be ignominiously quarantined was a keen
disappointment.
The accommodation at the quarantine station has been
found inadequate for the large number of suspects who are
being sent there, and it has been thought desirable to select
another site for the erection of buildings where the suspects
can be detained, leaving the present station for patients and
convalescents only. With this object in view Mr. A. Mault, the
Inspector under the Central Board of Health, arrived from the
capital on Saturday, and yesterday, in company with the
Mayor and the Sanitary Officer, inspected several places in
the vicinity of the town, but no site has yet been fixed upon.
It is intended to erect a permanent hospital, as was done
three years ago at Lindisfarne Bay, near Hobart.

72

The secretary of the Trevallyn Town Board reminds burgesses


that any house-holder not reporting an infectious disease in
his house within 24 hours, is under section 30 of the Public
Health Act, liable to a penalty of 50.
Letter to the Examiner Mon 10 Oct 1887
Sir, It seems manifestly unfair that certain houses are
quarantined on the barest suspicion of liability to contagion
while men who have been in close contact with persons
suffering from small-pox are walking in our midst unrestrained and spreading contagion. It seems that the poorer
classes are to be isolated, while the well-to-do are allowed
their freedom. Does this reflect any credit on the authorities,
who should be impartial.
Another matter also requires
amendment. In your contemporary of the 8 th inst. it is stated
that persons isolated are to be compelled to pay for their
food. Is this justice? As they are unwillingly compelled to
forfeit their liberty for the public good, it is only fair that the
public should pay for their food and rent. It seems that the
local board are unable to cope with the outbreak and unless
they can in the future, act more promptly and with more
impartiality the sooner the ? take the matter in to their own
hands, the better. Yours truly etc
???
The Launceston Examiner Tuesday 11 Oct 1887
The official bulletin of yesterday morning gave the following
items respecting the patients at the quarantine station:William Bishop, junr., passed a good night, improving; Cecilia
Hines, died 8.15 p.m. yesterday (Sunday), Alfred Bennett,
better; Susannah Watson, not so well. Rest doing well.
In the evening we were informed that Wm. Bishop junr., was
not quite so well. Susannah Watson was rather worse, and
Alfred Bennett was not quite so well as previously reported.
The state of the station was Small-pox patients, 9,
convalescents, 9; and suspects, 37. Total, 55.
Mrs Cecilia Hines, who died at the station on Sunday night,
had been in contact with the Pearson family one of the first
outbreaks and was under surveillance for some days before
73

being taken to the station. She developed the disease, and


on October 1, with her husband and three children, was
removed. Mrs. Hines, who was about 30 years of age, was
interred at Mowbray yesterday afternoon, the Ven.
Archdeacon Hales officiating.
We believe that instructions were received from the Chief
Secretary to have a post-mortem examination made of the
body of the deceased Cecilia Hines. Dr. Pike was requested,
but he courteously declined on the grounds that he was
satisfied before he gave his certificate as to the nature of the
disease coinciding with Dr. Pardeys opinion and he had no
wish to be quarantined in addition to the other sacrifices he
has made. Subsequently an order was received from the
Central Board of Health countermanding the previous action
of the Chief Secretary, and the examination was not
proceeded with.
A residence in Cameron-street was isolated yesterday in
connection with contact with the Storrer case.
Dr Maddox proceeded on Sunday to Rosemount, Bridgenorth,
to the residence of Mr. D. Storrers relatives whom Storrer
had visited a few days ago. The house had been isolated by
the Westbury police. Dr. Maddox vaccinated all the inmates
and reported them all well.
The Port Health Officer (Dr. Thompson), yesterday gave the
s.s. Mangana for Melbourne a clean bill of health, and will this
morning at 6 a.m. inspect the s.s. Devon and s.s. Cambria for
the same purpose. We understand that a telegram was
received yesterday from the Chief Secretary stating that
vessels arriving at Tasmanian ports from Launceston or any
out-port with a clean bill of health, can upon presentation of
the same to the Port Boarding Officer and with the captains
certificate be permitted to proceed without further medical
inspection.
The provision in this arrangement being
evidently intended to avoid the routine of repeated medical
inspection at consecutive ports of call.
With respect to the case of Mr. Alexander Perrie, a passenger
from Launceston by the s.s. Mangana last Friday, and whom
the Health Officer, Dr. Figg, allowed to land, we are in a
74

position to state that there was no intention to evade the


quarantine, Mr. Perrie is a civil engineer from Scotland who
came out here for the benefit of his wifes health, and had
resided for some four months in French-street. He has
received an appointment in one of the neighbouring colonies,
and it was imperative he should get over to fulfil it if it was
possible.
He decided, after much deliberation and
consultation with the best advisers to go, fully prepared to go
into quarantine if so ordered, but at the same time hoping he
might soon be released by the regulations being relaxed.
The calf which had been procured for vaccination purposes at
the station was operated upon yesterday by Dr. Pardey, being
inoculated with matter taken from a small-pox patient. This
experiment is a test, and if it is successful will demonstrate
beyond all doubt the nature of the disease.
It will be seen in another column that Dr. Steward will
vaccinate with calf lymph at nine oclock this morning.
The issue of supplies to the now seriously large number of
isolated houses by the executive of the Benevolent Society
has its humorous as well as itserious incidents. In his calls
yesterday the secretary received a list of the wants of the
inmates. One request was for a good sized round of beef;
another dependent thought 12 lb of sugar was the correct
proportion of sweeting to 1 lb of tea, and a third, who
evidently had a plum pudding in view, gave an order for 6 lb
of raisins and 6 lb of currants.
There is great danger of people in the country exercising zeal
without discretion in reporting imaginary cases, and so
causing an incalculable amount of worry and trouble. Mr.
Armstrong, the Superintendent of the Selby Police, had under
his notice some weeks ago the case of a man named Geo.
Miller, at Halls Track, who was reported as suffering from
some infectious disease. He caused enquiries to be made by
the local constable, and the result was that no action was
deemed necessary.
Last week a Launceston resident
reported to the Local Board of Health that he had received a
letter from a person at Halls Track stating that a man named
George Miller was suffering from small-pox. Last Saturday
morning at 12.30 the information was given to
75

Superintendent Armstrong with instructions to take


immediate action. Mr Armstrong had barely time to catch
the mail out, informing Constable Carr at the Piper that as
the constable at Halls Track was laid up he must undertake
the enquiry. On receipt of this instruction Constable Carr
started at half-past five for Halls Track, staying the night at
Hamberfields (???) He had the utmost difficulty in finding the
man he was in quest of, but he eventually succeeded in
discovering what turned out to be the man Miller previously
interviewed. The constable came upon him at the Panama
goldfield, 12 miles from Halls Track. Although the man had
been in contact with Bishops at Launceston, it was nearly a
month since he had left town. He was not ailing, and the
constable immediately left for home. As there was no mail to
Launceston yesterday, and no communication could be had
by wire, the constable came to town yesterday morning,
having been in the saddle almost continuously since 5.45
p.m. on Saturday.
Mr. A.Mault, deputed by the Central Board to visit Launceston
in connection with the outbreak, was in communication with
the Local Board throughout yesterday. His mission is to
render assistance to the Local Board in the selection of a
permanent quarantine reception for suspects; to trace the
outbreak of the disease to its inception, and so put the
matter in its proper light in the neighbouring colonies.
Our Hobart correspondent telegraphs that a petition is being
taken round for signatures asking the Mayor to convene a
public meeting to consider what best means to adopt to
prevent the spread of small-pox from Launceston to Hobart,
and already many influential signatures have been secured.
Our Longford correspondent writes yesterday:-A hurriedly
summoned meeting of the Local Board of Health was held
here this morning re a person who had come from
Launceston and journeyed to Cressy on Friday. I understand
that persuasion will be the first step taken towards inducing
the party to return to town, the second step being something
a little stronger should the first not have the desired effect.

76

The Launceston Examiner


SMALL-POX OUTBREAK

Wed 12 Oct, 1887

The following official bulletin was posted at the Town Hall


yesterday morning respecting the patients at the quarantine
station:-William Bishop, jun., much better; Alfred Bennett
passed a bad night, better this morning; Susannah Watson,
not so well; Henry Chick, very delirious; rest doing well.
In the evening we were informed that the following were
admitted yesterday:- Patient Leslie Alexander Marshall,
three years old, not vaccinated, confluent smallpox; no trace
of connection with infection. Suspects Alexander Wilson
Marshall, aged 27, vaccinated when 15 years old; Elizabeth
Agnes Marshall, 26, vaccinated as a child; Zilla Jessie
Marshall, 12 months, not vaccinated; John Hunter, 56,
vaccinated as a child and repeated when 30 years of age,
removed to the station for having been in contact with the
patient Chick, but shows no sign of infection.
William
Bishop, jun., a little better; Alfred Bennett and Susannah
Watson, not so well; D. Storrer, not severe, doing very well.
All the suspects keeping well.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges on behalf of the patients the receipt
of lollies, cakes, and fruit from Mr. W. Turner; a case of cakes
from Mrs. Brickhill, and from two lady friends, a parcel of
cakes and a pair of roast turkeys.
It will be seen that another case was yesterday added to the
list of small-pox patients. A child, the son of Mr. A.W.
Marshall, painter, of Church-street, off Frankland-street west,
has for some days been under medical treatment. The
symptoms of the boy, who is three years old, induced the
medical attendant to report the case on Sunday last as
probably one of small-pox. Dr. Pike as called in with the
result that the family were removed to the station yesterday
afternoon, the boy as a patient, and the rest of the family, Mr.
and Mrs. Marshall and an infant daughter, as suspects. Mr.
Marshall was a previous resident in Launceston, but some
time ago left the colony to reside in Victoria. About six weeks
ago he returned to Launceston, and has since been busily
engaged on his own premises, rarely coming in contact with
outside people. At present the connecting link between this
77

case and the preceding ones has not been discovered.


Neither of the children are vaccinated.
Two houses were isolated yesterday, six special constables
being sworn in last night, the residence of Marshall in churchstreet, in a portion of which a married couple live, and a
house in York-street, near Wellington-street.
Dr. Pardy reports there is no change in the condition of the
inoculated calf at the station since yesterday; he expects to
be better able to-day to tell if the experiment has been
successful.
We learn that it was the original intention of the authorities to
release the suspects at the station after a lapse of fifteen
days from the arrival of the first patients. It has been
deemed desirable to extend this time to 21 days, the first
release will therefore be made on Monday next.
A young man, Lawson, who had been in contact with the
patient Chick, and referred to in yesterdays issue by our
Longford correspondent, came to town yesterday morning by
train, and is now under surveillance.
The uncertain cases referred to some days ago as affecting
an outbreak at Ringarooma, have been satisfactorily traced
to a family named Watson, some of whom have suffered from
chicken-pox.
The Port Health Officer, Dr. Thompson, yesterday inspected
and gave a clean bill of health to the following coasting
vessels:-Devon, Cambria, Wakefield, Dorset, Freetrader,
Robert Burns, De Witt, Phantom, Ruby, and Undine.
The imperative necessity for vaccination is being very
generally observed. Many large local firms are insisting that
their employees shall submit to the operation. As some
compensation for the compulsion, some firms, we learn, are
paying the medical fee.
During the past fortnight various small-pox preventives have
been advertised and have met with ready sale. In another
column Messrs. R. Miller and Co. advertise chloridised
78

sanitary soap as a sure preventive for all contagious


diseases. A liberal use of good soap and clear water will
always produce beneficial results and the disinfecting
properties of Mr. Millers soap will be best tested by giving it a
fair trial.

CHECK PLACE FOR FOLLWING


The following letter from Mr. A. Mault, inspector under the
Central Board of Health, was read:-Would you kindly tell me if
I could find a small steamer here to use in connection with
the quarantine department. It would have to be capable,
with arrangements which we would effect, of carrying say a
dozen people to and from Lempriere, and as it would not
have to be used for any other purpose, we should have to
buy it or charter it for some time.
The Master Warden said the only boat they had to dispose of
was the tug Tamar, and he thought the members would not
object to sell her.
Warden Harrap suggested that the s.s. Corlo, which was said
to be for sale, would be a suitable boat.
The Master Warden stated that the Mayor had applied for the
tug to convey Mr. Mault and the members of the Local Board
of Health down the river on Wednesday for the purpose of
inspecting sites for a quarantine ground. As the tug was not
available, he had placed the s.s. Tarrina at the Mayors
disposal.
Warden McKenzie hoped the Government would not make a
sanatorium at Port Lempriere, as the expenditure would be
enormous, and the distance from the town was too great. He
hoped also that the authorities would not be led away by the
present scare.
Warden Ditcham said it would be a crying shame to take
persons away down there from their friends, and he would
79

resist it to the death. (Laughter.) They would never take a


child of his there. The matter then dropped.
Letter to the Editor Oct 12 1887
Sir,-Remedy worse than disease. The quarantining and
isolating, as remedies against small-pox threaten to become
worse than the disease. Small-pox is not the only illness
human flesh is heir to. The numerous visitors to the beautiful
and healthy island of Tasmania prove that in many cases
change of air to the island is better than all the doctors can
do with all medicines.
Oh Tasman, how nobly they grand mountains rise;
A topaz thourt set in the midst of the sea.
To thee I return with joy and rejoicing,
To the earths fairest tale, my hearts cushla-ma-chree,
The long continued quarantines and isolations will cause
illness and increase of illness in many cases, and more injury
will be occasioned to health thereby than any benefits to be
had from such quarantining, etc.
Admitting health to be of more importance than money, yet
the loses, annoyances, and injuries arising from excessive
quarantining, etc., etc., may prove very injurious to health,
and much more than counterbalance the uses of the
quarantining etc.
Let moderation be observed and excess avoided, even in
administration of remedies.
It seems unnecessary and unjust that all who are vaccinated
according to law should suffer indiscriminately with those
who, contrary to law, remain unvaccinated.
Those who are vaccinated should pass free.
MODERATOR

Yours etc.,

[We presume every care is taken to cause as little risk and


inconvenience to patients and suspects as possible. It is not
agreeable to be in quarantine or isolation, but it is the first
and most important step to take, and surely it is better that
inconvenience should be endured by scores than that
thousands should be imperilled. Neither quarantining nor
80

isolation necessarily implies deprivation of fresh air and


exercise. Within the limits of the quaranting station or the
isolated premises the persons confined are able to move
about. It would be very desirable that vaccinated persons
should be exempt from quarantine and isolation if that were
possible: that, however, is out of the question, for although
they might be protected they could be the means of carrying
contagion to others. This is one of the forms in which the
community at large has to suffer for the unceasing obstinacy
of a few. Hence the need for all to do their utmost both by
precept and example to induce their neighbours to employ
those means which science has made available for the
mitigation of human suffering. Ed.] Oct. 10
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR (Wed 12 Oct, 1887)
A Puzzle
Sir, - At a quarantine station there were 45 souls, comprising
small-pox cases, suspects, convalescents, nurses, and doctor.
Three times the number of small-pox cases and nurses
together were equal to the sum of the suspects and
convalescents, while the small-pox cases were equal to 1
times the number of nurses, or to the sum of the
convalescents and nurses. How many were there of each?
Yours, etc., O.K.
Quarantine Station
Sir, - The necessity for condensing the report of proceedings
at the meeting of the Board of Health on Monday evening has
led to something like mystification in the views which I
expressed in reference to the proposed quarantine station for
Launceston. Mr. Mault, guided by the opinion of Mr Taylor,
seemed disposed to recommend Lempriere for the purpose.
To this I strongly objected. 1 st. Because the distance is too
great from town 35 miles, requiring a whole day for each
trip. As the station would be available for country residents,
the extra journey might frequently be too much for them. It
might happen, also, that as soon as the steam launch set
apart for the purpose had left for the station, other cases
might arise which would have to be retained in town until
next day.
81

2nd.
Because Lempriere is the proclaimed place for
quarantine ships arriving seawards, and to occupy it with
patients from town and the country districts would be highly
inconvenient and improper.
Supposing that when so
occupied a ship were to arrive, and was ordered into
quarantine, would her possibly healthy passengers and crew
be located with the persons already suffering from the
disease?
3rd. Because to enforce rigid isolation and anything less
would be worse than useless a large number of warders
would be indispensable, which would greatly increase the
cost.
These were the principal grounds of objection that I took to
Lempriere, but I said that it might be desirable to temporarily
utilise the existing buildings there for the reception of
convalescents and suspects, as there seemed to be ample
room for thoroughly separating them. The change of air and
surroundings would be beneficial to both classes, whilst the
hospital would be relieved to the same extent. I confess,
however, that I am at a loss to know why Lempriere should
ever have been taken by the Government for quarantine
purposes, except that it afforded an opportunity for disposing
of a number of unprofitable buildings. Middle Island had, for
probably over half a century, been the recognised quarantine
ground of the Tamar, and a better place could not be desired.
Surrounded by a wide stretch of water, with good anchorage,
accessible at any state of the tide, and with an ample area, it
seems to have been designed by nature for this especial
purpose. That it has latterly been used as a quarantine
station for cattle does not in the lightest degree affect the
question. There is plenty of accommodation for both classes
of afflicted ones. Surely it will not be contented that the
space occasionally required for a bull unfits the rest of the
island for human beings. One advantage clearly follows from
combining the two one care-taker will serve for both.
But now with regard to a quarantine station for Launceston
and adjacent districts. It should be within easy distance of
the town, and perfectly isolated as regards other habitations.
These requirements are completely satisfied in Pig Island,
82

and in addition it offers the two very great advantages of


being cheaply guarded and affording an excellent place for
quarantining vessels that might be sent from town as has
recently been necessary. Vessels might be anchored on the
southern side of the island and the town would be just as
safe from the infection from them as if they were thirty or
forty miles lower down, whilst they would be under better
surveillance and the cost of attendance and supplies would
be much less. Instead of an army of warders day and night
to maintain a cordon round the station, as would be
necessary on the main land, a lookout erected on the summit
of the island in which one man should always be on duty
would probably be sufficient. A small piece of cable across to
either side of the river perhaps the western side would be
the better as it would not be liable to injury from anchors
would put the island in the telephonic communication with
the town. A steam launch might be obtained and kept
specially for quarantine work; or if wanted only for the Pig
Island station a barge might be constructed and comfortably
fitted up for the purpose, to be towed by one of the steam
launches.
In this way patients might be expeditiously
transported to the station, and with even less fatigue than
would result from travelling only half the distance in a
vehicle.
Both islands are quite large enough for the purposes
mentioned, and their configuration is such as to furnish
shelter for the buildings, with breezy walks for those able to
indulge in such exercise. Plenty of water could be obtained
by the construction of tanks, but there is a spring of fresh
water at the south-west extremity of Middle Island, and a well
has just been sunk on Pig Island by the Marine Board, though
perhaps the water is not fit for domestic use. Speaking of the
Marine Board reminds me that for some little time Pig Island
will be the centre of dredging operations, but this will not
invalidate its claim. What permanent quarantine buildings
may be decided upon, it may be hoped they will not be
needed for the present outbreak. By the time they are
erected I trust that the last case of small-pox in Launceston
will at least be convalescent. They would not be in the way
of the Marine Boards employees, but on the contrary would
be under their protection whilst domiciled on the island, and
83

a caretaker would not be needed until the men removed to


another position.
I think I have said sufficient to show the advantages that will
ensue from having only two quarantine stations and utilising
our two islands for both, for however much settlement may
go on elsewhere they never can be encroached upon in the
future. My desire, like that of everyone who discusses this
subject, is that the most suitable site may be obtained, but
the effect of a landscape depends largely on the point from
which it is viewed. If I am wrong I shall be only too pleased to
be set right, but I earnestly deprecate the subordination of
this important and permanent undertaking to questions of
quite secondary and ephemeral concern.- Yours, etc., H.
Button. Oct 11.
SMALLPOX
Sir,- I notice that the Board of Health requests all persons
who come in contact with any one suffering from the above
complaint to notify the same to the board, and not
intermingle with their fellow citizens. I presume the above
notice was issued for the good of the community at large, but
by the problem I am about to propose it seems to be
otherwise, and causes considerable dissatisfaction among
several of our fellow citizens who have been suffering the
penalty of isolation for the last few days. Of course the
precautions taken are quite needful, and I am not finding any
fault, only that all should be served alike in such cases. The
problem I want solved is this A patient suffering from smallpox is taken away from business premises to the quarantine
station. The premises are closed, well fumigated, and all
persons having worked on the premises are isolated in their
own homes, or where they board. Contrast. A patient
suffering from small-pox is taken away from other business
premises to the quarantine station, the premises are closed,
the occupants are not removed to the quarantine station, the
work-men are not isolated in their own homes but are still at
large, the same having been in actual contact with the
patient prior to his being removed from the premises. What
distinction there is in the above cases that the treatment
should be so vastly different I know not. If it is in your power,
Mr. Editor, to solve the above problem you will greatly oblige
Yours, etc, COMPASS.
84

Sir,-Remedy worse than disease. The quaranting and


isolating, as remedies against small-pox is not the only illness
human flesh is heir to. The numerous visitors to the beautiful
and healthy island of Tasmania prove that in many cases
change of air to the island is better than all the doctors can
do with all medicines.
O Tasman, how nobly thy grand mountains rise;
A topaz thourt set in the midst of the sea.
To thee I return with joy and rejoicing,
To the earths fairest isle, my hearts oushla-ma-ohree.
The long continued quarantines and isolations will cause
illness and increase of illness in many cases, and more injury
will be occasioned to health thereby than any benefits to be
had from such quarantining, etc.
Admitting health to be of more importance than money, yet
the losses, annoyances, and injuries arising from excessive
quarantining, etc., etc., may prove very injurious to health,
and much more than counterbalance the uses of the
quarantining, etc.
Let moderation be observed and excess avoided, even in
administration of remedies.
It seems unnecessary and unjust that all who are vaccinated
according to law should suffer indiscriminately with those
who, contrary to law, remain unvaccinated.
Those who are vaccinated should pass free.Yours, etc., Moderator.
[We presume every care is taken to cause as little risk and
inconvenience to patients and suspects as possible. It is not
agreeable to be in quarantine or isolation, but it is the first
and most important step to take, and surely it is better that
inconvenience should be endured by scores than that
thousands should be imperilled. Neither quarantining nor
isolation necessarily implies deprivation of fresh air and
exercise. Within the limits of the quarantine station or the
isolated premises the persons confined are able to move
about. It would be very desirable that vaccinated persons
should be exempt from quarantine and isolation if that were
possible: that, however, is out of the question, for although
they might be protected they could be the means of carrying
contagion to others. This is one of the forms in which the
community at large has to suffer for the unceasing obstinacy
85

of a few. Hence the need for all to do their utmost both by


precept and example to induce their neighbours to employ
those means which science has made available for the
mitigation of human suffering._Ed.] Oct. 10.
SMALL-POX REMINISCENCES.
Sir, - Our little island for a number of years has been so
healthy and its climate so enjoyable that we have had no
suspicion of coming events, living for the day in peace and
seeming security. This visitation of small-pox (like a live shell
dropping amongst us suddenly) has startled us up a bit, and
changed our serenity into something approaching fear.
Foolish reports, and the details through the press in some
instances of sick patients, giving the features of individual
sufferers (doubtless done with the best intention, but a
mistake all the same) have had much to do in frightening
weak minded people. It does not follow, as a consequence, if
one member of a family takes this disease that the whole
household will take it; and it is quite absurd for anyone to
imagine such. Let those who have such fear pluck up and
discard it at once as unworthy of detention in the mind. A
brave patient always helps a doctor to consummate a cure.
I know something of small-pox myself, and will relate it, it
may tend to dispel the present feeling, and put a silver lining
to the dark cloud passing over us, which, it is to be hoped,
may soon disappear. The coast of old England was within
sight when a case of small-pox which proved fatal broke
out among the troops, who numbered over 1000 men, bound
for the Crimea, in the ship Great Tasmania. The soldier was
buried at sea, and we went on to our destination without
another case occurring. A living freight of men on the wide
ocean, packed closely together in a ship, might have been a
fruitful field for this malady, but prudence spread no alarm,
and active sanitary measures promptly adopted produced
most cheering results. At Delhi, India, I took or aught smallpox when with my company at the annual course of
musketry. As I always fired myself, and took much interest in
my men, I stuck to the work when really very ill, not knowing
then what was the matter with me. I became so weak I was
necessitated to sit down upon the ground, and eventually
86

had to take to my bed. My wife attended me day and night,


although the doctor requested her to leave me for a time;
neither she nor any of our servants caught the disease, nor
yet any of my company. I do not see the wisdom, nor yet the
necessity, for keeping unfortunate individuals as suspect in
close proximity to this disease, so that they may see and
hear all that is taking place, that their minds may be
terrorised to a degree and thereby weakened, able to offer no
resistance in case of attack. Put them under observance for
a time, but not in such a position, and make them cheerful
and happy if possible. India may be termed the hotbed of
small-pox, and I believe it is latent there at all times. The
sanitarium I commanded in the Bombay Presidency was
surrounded with small-pox for a considerable time. I received
reports daily of the deaths in the native villages in its vicinity.
No quarantine regulations were put in force at Bombay.
Troops paraded and marched as usual through the country,
and except vigilant sanitary measures and precautions,
nothing further was done. Convalescents were constantly
coming to that sanitarium from all parts of the Presidency,
and occasionally from Aden. The officers signalling class
from Poonah was also there. No one caught the disease,
although the district was infected for miles around. Yours,
etc., G. Priestly. Westbury, Oct 6.
The Launceston Examiner Thursday 13 Oct 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The following official bulletin respecting the patients at the
quarantine station was posted at the Town Hall yesterday
morning: - Leslie Alexander Marshall, confluent small-pox.
William Bishop, jun., still improving. Alfred Bennet, Susannah
Watson, and Henry Chick, very bad. The rest doing well. In
the evening we were informed that the following changes
had occurred: - Henry Chick, dying. Alfred Bennett and
Susannah Watson, still bad. William Bishop, junr., improved
slightly.
The following were reported as admitted yesterday: - Patients
Samuel Houston, aged 85, small-pox, vaccinated when a
child and re-vaccinated a few days ago; Catherine Wilkinson,
aged 37, small-pox, vaccinated when a child. Suspects
87

John Wilkinson, 36, vaccinated when a child; Catherine


Meehan, 45, vaccinated when a child; John Meehan, 19,
vaccinated when twelve years old.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges the receipt of a parcel of fish from
Mrs. Johnson. Dr. Pardy states he has telephoned to the Chief
Secretary that he has no accommodation for further suspects
under the present arrangements.
It will be absolutely
necessary to take in an additional area of ground.
Two fresh cases, which have been under observation for
some days, were conveyed yesterday afternoon to the
station. Samuel Houston was one of two men employed by
the Local Board of Health fumigating, etc., and has caught
the infection while in the discharge of his duties. During the
time he has been employed he was isolated from his family,
and lived and slept at the iron shed in William-street.
Houston was re-vaccinated a few days ago, but evidently had
contracted the infection prior to the operation. He has the
disease in a very mild form owing no doubt to being
successfully re-vaccinated. The second case was that of Mrs.
Wilkinson, a washerwoman. She is married, but has no
family, and with her husband has occupied part of a cottage
in Margaret-street, opposite Portsmouth Square.
She is
stated to have been vaccinated when a child. The whole of
this household, consisting of Mr. And Mrs. Wilkinson and a
widow named Meehan and her son, were removed, Mrs.
Wilkinson as a patient and the rest as suspects. It is
considered likely the infection was contracted through the
husbands contact with the patient Larter.
The first of the isolated houses Mrs Whites lodging house,
Frederick-street was released yesterday afternoon after
fifteen clear days police surveillance. The inmates were all
well, and were heartily glad to regain their freedom.
The difficulty experienced by the Surgeon-Superintendent of
the hospital, Dr. Thompson, in obtaining supplies of calf
lymph is proving a serious hindrance. Dr. Thompson is
hampered at every step, and it would seem as if the
vaccination department is grossly neglected in this respect.
He is anxious to vaccinate the police in charge of the isolated
houses as well as the inmates themselves, but is quite
88

unable at present. Scores are being daily turned away from


the hospital failing a supply of vaccine matter.
A suggestion has been made, which the Local Board of
Health might advantageously adopt for notifying to
pedestrians along our foot-paths the proximity of isolated
houses. In Sydney the practice is to rope off the footpath in
front of such houses; in Launceston the first notification a
pedestrian receives is a command from a constable,
sometimes on the opposite side of the street, Walk in the
road. Why could not a couple of pieces of quartering be
placed across the footpath, one on each side of the isolated
premises? This would prevent persons from walking along
the pavement, but would indicate the locality of isolation and
permit them to choose tother side of the way in preference.
The police being on duty, day and night, no fear need be
entertained of the timber used being stolen.
Amongst the improvable stories of the spread of the disease
at the capital was one that two Launceston men had escaped
surveillance and were lodging at a Hobart Hotel. Concerning
this rumour our Hobart correspondent telegraphs that the
enquiry shows the rumour in the Mercury paragraph to be
unfounded. The lodgers at the hotel in question had not
been in contact with any suspects in Launceston.
(By Electric Telegraph)
Hobart, Oct 12
The Central Board of Hobart received the following telegram
last night from the Central Board at Sydney Many thanks
for your details by telegram. This board will meet tomorrow
to consider Melbournes request to again enforce quarantine.
Kindly inform me at once if all vessels outward for this colony
are inspected prior to departure, and also give number of
persons suffering from small-pox, deaths, and suspects from
Saturday, 8th, up to date, for information of this board at a
meeting, to be held at 3 p.m. tomorrow (Wednesday).
The Secretary of the Hobart Board telegraphed to-day in
reply as follows:-The Chief Secretary instructs me to inform
you that the T.S.N. Company are not taking passengers for
Sydney or Melbourne except by boats from Hobart, and are
89

taking great care no passengers from Launceston are allowed


to travel. Most of the Tasmanian passengers are personally
known to the companys manager, but when in doubt
intending passengers would be compelled to make a
statutory declaration as to the locality in which they have
resided for the previous 14 days. The managers certificate
as to residence of passengers would be attached to the clean
bill of health. A copy of this telegram has been repeated to
Brisbane, Melbourne, Adelaide, and Perth.
THE SCARE AT THE CAPITAL
October 13, 1887)

(Examiner Thursday,

A meeting was held at the Town Hall to-night to consider


what measures should be taken to prevent the spread of
small-pox to Hobart. The hall was well filled.
The Mayor, who was unanimously elected to the chair, said
he feared that the meeting called at this crisis might cause
alarm and tend to make people lose their heads. Already
injudicial reports and injurious paragraphs had obtained
circulation. An instance of this was a paragraph in the
morning journal, referring to the alleged arrival here of
persons who had been in contact with Mr. Storrer, of
Launceston. He then called upon the Town Clerk to read a
letter from Mr. Pedder, Superintendent of Police, stating that
he had made all necessary investigation, and found that the
persons alluded to had not in any way been in contact with
the suspects.
Mr Joseph Cook moved-That in the opinion of this meeting
steps should be at once adopted so that small-pox might be
confined within its present limits. He urged that measures
should be directed towards preventing persons from coming
from Launceston.
It was simply a matter of isolating that
town for a short time. If this were done we should be fairly
justified in asking the other colonies to relax the present
stringent quarantine regulations as far as this clean port of
Hobart was concerned.
(Slight applause).
Mr C.E.
Feathershine (?) seconded the motion.
Mr W. Bagby said he was only a recent arrival in Hobart
which he wished to make his home. He had had considerable
experience of epidemics in other countries and might be
pardoned for saying a few words. He agreed with the opinion
expressed by a portion of the press that this meeting should
90

not have been called. (Hear, hear, and applause.)


He
deplored the suggestion to cut off communication with
Launceston. (Applause.)
One would think that some
hundreds of persons had been infected instead of only a few.
He denied that small-pox was so dreadfully infectious as
people in this colony seemed to think. Experience showed
that the disease was generated anew again and again, and
depended to a considerable extent upon the surroundings. In
England, for instance, it was found in many cases to be
restricted to dirty, ill ventilated quarters. If people would
observe ordinary sanitary precautions, have their houses well
ventilated, keep themselves and their premises clean, and
were careful in diet they need not fear infection. Wherever
ordinary sanitary laws were neglected it was impossible to
manage disease. The best thing Hobart could do was to get
rid of filth, and get rid of the causes of typhoid and other
symotic ???????? (Applause). This would be better than
resorting (?) to vaccination, doctors, or any other form of
state quackery. (Applause). Let all our slums and back
streets be cleaned, and every man fulfil the simple laws of
health, and the public would soon be free from typhoid, and
need not fear an invasion of small-pox. (Applause).
Mr ?????? , of Port Cygnet, ?????????? in response ??????
said that the less fuss there was made over the present
outbreak the better.
It behoved the public of such a
sanitorium as Hobart was regarded to be to keep their city
clean and healthy. At the same time it seemed to him that
from many stand-points the idea of cutting off
communications with Launceston was simply monstrous.
(Applause.). He vigourously advocated universal vaccination
and isolation of suspects, but to suspend intercourse with
Launceston would be cutting off a bond of union between
north and south. Rather should we encourage a feeling of
friendship in these times of sickness, and he was sure if the
disease afflicted the south the north would be prompt and
ready to repay sympathy with sympathy. (Hear, Hear).
Mr. F. W. Piesse thought we should rather strive to show our
sympathy with the north instead of evincing any unfriendly
attitude towards them. He questioned whether anything
could be gained by an inspection of persons travelling higher
from Launceston, for the disease might be latent for days.
From what we had heard and read the form of disease now in
91

the colony was a mild one, and he believed the authorities in


Launceston were taking all possible measures and
precautions, and it would be unfair and unwise to reflect on
the action taken by our fellow countrymen in the north. He
moved as an amendment That the citizens of Hobart
synmpathise with the people of Launceston at the present
juncture, and consider that the measure adopted by the
authorities are sufficient. (Loud Applause).
Dr. Edward Crowther, in response to the loud calls, said
Launceston, at this moment had need of all our sympathy as
we should do what we could to alleviate her troubles. Still he
owed a duty to the colony and his own city and he
was ????????????demand the immediate enforcement of the
Vaccination Act. (Applause and no, yes.) He demanded
it as a right. Vaccination was the only true stamper out of
the small-pox. He contended the inspection of passengers
from Launceston was anything but a farce. At any rate,
those boarding trains at Launceston should be examined.
Another thing was that the Government should have
purchased two hulks, placing one in the Derwent and one in
the Tamar for quarantine purposes for it was all very well to
talk of Lindisfarne and Barnes Bay but if anyone belonging to
him was afflicted he would not have them taken thither, but
somewhere within reasonable access. He did not say isolate
Launceston, but he did demand the isolation of passengers,
and compulsory vaccination. (Loud Applause).
Dr. Benjafield said he would sooner have small-pox than
typhoid or dram-drinking, for small-pox was not the dreadful
thing it had been represented, but it was bad enough, and
there was only the ?????? preventative against it, namely
vaccination properly performed.
He thought the Chief
Secretary and authorities had acted nobly in regard to the
outbreak.
It would be
absurd and ????? to isolate
Launceston. We ought rather to sympathise ????/ with the
people in Launceston, and support the authorities in their
work. He seconded the amendment.
Mr Alfred J. Taylor thought the Launceston authorities had
not done all they could and should have done. He cited
numerous statistics favourble to vaccination and was
accorded a good reception.
Dr. Bingham Crowther urged the necessity for more
stringent precautions than now existed. With regard to
protecting the south from the north, there should be a
92

vigilance committee to inspect persons coming from the


infected town.
Vaccine lymph carefully and discreetly
performed produced a state of things utterly antagonistic to
the spread of small-pox.
The Premier, who was received with applause, said when
he first heard of the meeting he regretted it had been called,
as it was likely to be more dangerous than useful. He was
now satisfied, after hearing all the evidence the medical men
to-night had given, that it would be useful rather than
dangerous.
The testimony adduced favourable to
vaccination would send the audience away convinced of the
value of that rite, and impress them with the importance of
carrying out the provisions of the Vaccination Act. He found
that some had condemned the authorities for not taking
proper action. Well, it was true that in meeting the difficulty
for the first time the proper restrictions may not have been
taken. Probably the Launceston Local Board of Health would
admit that, but now he insisted upon the fact that the board
had been most energetic, and were now doing their best.
The rest lay with the people themselves. The speaker then
referred to the measures which the board had adopted, and
he warmly praised their efforts.
The authorities of
Launceston had circumscribed the disease, and kept it within
the domestic circles and their visitors and lodgers in which it
had originated. Consequently there were good grounds for
believing we had fairly mastered the situation. As to Mr.
Storrers case he admitted that some one should from the
first have been told off for the burial of the dead, but that
had now been duly arranged for, as burials would be
performed only by some one already within the quarantine
grounds. A full record had been made of every case received
into quarantine, showing the age of the patients, age when
vaccinated, and all other such particulars, and he believed
that when these records were completed they would show
how useful, even in Tasmania, vaccination had been. But it
was useless to have a Vaccination Act on the statute book
unless the people would do something themselves and be
prepared to bare their arms to this lancet. He was disposed
to think that this epidemic would be beneficial to us rather
than otherwise, for he had noticed within the last few days
that children and adults were flocking in numbers to avail
themselves of the protection of vaccination. This agitation
would also have a good effect in regard to the Health Act,
93

which had been nearly a dead letter, but was now being
victimised. Local boards were springing up through the
length and breadth of the land, and would be ready to cope
with any emergency. He did not believe, however, that the
disease would escape from Launceston into other parts. As
to forming a line of demarcation at Oatlands or elsewhere, he
did not think any benefit would accrue from such a course.
(Hear, hear). The result of this meeting would be to induce
the public to do their duty to extend the scope of vaccination
and give a support to the Health Act. (Loud Applause).
The Chairman then put the amendment and nearly all
hands were raised in its favour, only a dozen being raised
against it. It was then declared carried, and a vote of thanks
having, on the motion of the Premier, been appointed to the
chairman, the meeting terminated.
QUARANTINE STATION FOR LAUNCESTON
Owing to the large number of suspects whom it has been
deemed prudent to remove to the temporary quarantine
station at Mowbray, that place is now charged beyond its
proper capacity, and it has been deemed desirable to secure
another locality to which convalescents or suspected
persons, or perhaps both, may be sent. It is also intended to
erect permanent buildings as soon as a permanent site can
be determined on. This was promised by the Government
more than three years ago, but beyond the purchase for
1500 of a block of worthless land (except as sites for marine
villas) and thirty or forty dilapidated wooden houses that no
one else would look at, nothing whatever was done. The
scare subsided and with it all action by the authorities, and
hence the difficulties that have now to be confronted. The
public were led to suppose after the sharp warning given
about the middle of 1884, that all precautions had been
taken and every arrangement had been made for immediate
action should occasion arise. The occasion did arise, and
nothing was ready. This must not be permitted to occur
again, and it is only fair to say that the present Premier has
shown himself to be thoroughly alive to the gravity of the
situation, and willing to incur any reasonable expense in
providing whatever experience has proved to be necessary in
future similar emergency. Just now, however, the object is to
94

relieve the pressure at Mowbray, and as our readers are


already aware, Mr. Mault was requested by the Central Board
of health to place himself in communication with the
Launceston Local Board with a view to the selection of a
suitable piece of land for the purpose. On the application of
his Worship the Mayor the Marine Board promptly placed
their new steamer, Tarrina, at the disposal of the Health
Board for the purpose of examining both banks of the Tamar,
and she proceeded on that mission yesterday. We may say
that for the last fifty years Middle Island has been the
recognised quarantine station for the Tamar; but about four
years ago the island was employed for quarantining cattle,
and that was the excuse for purchasing Lempriere, as if the
island could not have been used for both. As a matter of
fact, then, at the present time we have three quarantine
stations within as many miles of each other, six or seven
miles inside the Tamar, besides the one at Mowbray, viz., the
station for cattle on Middle Island; for passengers and crews
at Lempriere, though not the slightest provision has been
made for their reception; and for ships at Bryants Bay;
whereas Middle Island alone would be sufficient. It was
suggested to the board that as there were a number of
buildings at Lempriere that had been abandoned on the
collapse of the iron smelting works ten or twelve years ago,
they might be repaired and utilised in the present
emergency. Accordingly it was resolved to visit the place
yesterday. All the members of the Board of Health were on
board except Messrs. P. Barrett and D. Scott, who were
attending to their Parliamentary duties; also the Sanitary
Officer, Town Surveyor, Mr. Rooke, M.L.C., Mr. Mault, and a
few other gentlemen. The steamer left the wharf shortly
after nine oclock, and reached Lempriere about half past
twelve. The party disembarked at the main jetty, which has
fallen into a mournful state of dilapidation, the traversing of
which was not un-attended with peril, and proceeded to the
hamlet, which presented a no less desolate appearance.
There are from thirty to forty cottages, which considering the
time they have been uninhabited are in a tolerable state of
preservation; but though the day was delightful, the bush
brilliant with wild flowers, and the surrounding and more
distant scenery simply enchanting, the spirit of solitude and
decay seemed to brood over the place. The houses stand in
a swamp, and as one after another was timidly entered, the
95

visitors felt that possibly disease might be latent there, as


much to be dreaded as small-pox itself. However that may
be the whole party returned to the steamer about two oclock
satisfied that Lempriere was not adapted for a quarantine
station for Launceston if for no other reason than that of its
great distance, 35 miles. The party then started for Middle
Island, and during the passage a cold collation, thoughtfully
provided by his Worship the Mayor, was laid out in the saloon
of the little vessel. When we say that Mr. Sutton was caterer,
it will be understood that the viands were copious and
excellent, and received all the attention that could be
prompted by existing conditions. Arrived at Middle Island,
the party landed at the admirable jetty that had been
specially constructed for cattle, and were met by Mr. Wood,
the caretaker, whose garden would gladden the hearts of
florists. The soil is of the richest description, and flowers of
all kinds grow in rank luxuriance. The mildness of the
climate was demonstrated by the fact that potatoes were
already from six to twelve inches hight, and peas in bloom.
Mr. Wood conducted the visitors all over the island; and
pointed out three permanent springs of the finest water on
the southern side. A cow and three young bulls are now
undergoing quarantine, and there are still a good many
rabbits. Before leaving Mr. Wood showed the visitors several
specimens of carving, representing birds, flowers, etc., which
were beautifully done, and strange to say with the simplest
of tools an old jack-knife. About three oclock the party reembarked, and many were the expressions of surprise and
admiration that an island so beautiful now and so capable of
being made perfectly charming at very slight expense,
should be so completely cut off from the public.
Its
adaptation for a quarantine station was admitted by all, the
only objection taken by some being that it was too good for
such a purpose. There is ample space for human and bovine
requirements, while ships can anchor clear of the fair-way on
the northern side. Shortly after three oclock a start was
made for town, and on the way up top coats and wraps came
into general requisition. About six oclock a call was made at
Pig Island to ascertain its suitability as a permanent
quarantine station for Launceston.
Her opinion was
somewhat divided, for whilst its area was deemed sufficient,
and its fitness for vessels that might be sent from town was
admitted, some of the visitors thought it might be too bleak
96

a fear engendered simply by the fact that with advancing


evening the wind had become more chilly. The island,
however has an elevated central ridge that affords perfect
shelter from the prevailing wind. Several cottages have been
erected by the Marine Board for the men engaged in
dredging in the neighbourhood. For their water supply they
are now dependent on the rainfall. A well has been sunk to a
depth of 80ft., the last eight or ten feet passing through
silver sand, from which came a strong up-flow of salt water.
Mr. Pinnington, the foreman of works, has consequently refilled the well to that depth and puddled it with clay, by which
means he hopes to exclude the salt water; he will then lead
the surface drainage of the northern side of the island into
the well, which will thus become an immense tank, giving an
abundant supply. Having rapidly gone over the higher part of
the island, the party returned to the steamer and started for
town, which was reached shortly after seven, all being
greatly pleased with the trip, and hopeful that it may in some
measure help to solve the problem which caused it to be
under-taken.
Letters to the Editor Thurs 13 Oct 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
Sir, It appears rather dogmatic on the part of Dr. Youl, of
Melbourne, to state that the epidemic in Launceston is one of
anthrax or malignant pustule, as he has nothing whatever to
support his opinion.
In Dr. Quanins dictionary of Medicine occurs the statement
malignant pustule usually occurs as a primary lesion due to
direct inoculation, very rarely secondarily to constitutional
infection; the meat is usually either on the face, neck, hand
or arm, namely those parts most exposed to inoculation. I do
not think the inoculation of the calf at the quarantine station
is at all necessary to establish the nature of the disease. Its
wide-spread infectousness, premonitory symptoms, mode of
onset, course of disease, its severity regulated by
vaccination, the fact that two of the fatal cases were unvaccinated individuals and the unanimity of medical opinion
speak quite strongly enough of its nature, without requiring
97

the aid of any foreign experts, or inoculation of lower animals


to confirm the fact that it is small-pox.
Yours, etc. H.G.H. Naylor, Campbell Town, Oct. 10.
The Launceston Examiner Friday 14 October, 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The following official bulletin from the quarantine station was
posted at the Town Hall yesterday morning: - Henry Chick,
dead; Wm. Bishop, junr., still improving; Benjamin Larter, not
quite so well; Jas. Milligan, convalescent; Catherine
Wilkinson, very bad; Susannah Watson, not quite so bad;
Alfred Bennett, no improvement; Nurse Johnson, suffering
from quinsy, not quite so well. In the evening we were
informed of the following changes:-Catherine Wilkinson, very
bad to-night; Susannah Watson, Alfred Bennett, and Wm.
Bishop, junr., improved a little; Benjamin Larter and Leslie A.
Marshall, a little worse; Mrs. OConnor, late nurse, not so well,
but no signs of small-pox so far. State of station Patients, 9;
convalescents, 11; suspects 49; total, 69.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, on behalf of the patients, a case of
pineapples from Mr. Ditcham, a box of eggs from Mr.
Blackburn, and another box from a friend.
Henry Chick, who was removed last Saturday to the station,
died at 11.40 on Wednesday night, making the sixth fatal
case. He was not vaccinated. He seems to have changed for
the worse on Tuesday morning, having become very
delirious, and gradually sank under the hemorrhatic form of
the disease.
He was interred yesterday afternoon,
Archdeacon Hales reading the service. Chick was 25 years of
age, and was well known as an all-round athlete, and had
recently become a member of the South Launceston Football
Club. He went into the service of Bennell Bros. As a boy, and
was a great favourite with the firm.
The furniture warehouse of Messrs. Mills Bros., George and
Cameron streets, was isolated yesterday morning, Mr. Alfred
Mills, one of the partners, having contracted the disease in a
modified form. He has been ailing since Monday, but the
symptoms of small-pox were manifest yesterday and induced
the isolation of the premises. He was not vaccinated. It has
98

been decided on the strength of the medical certificate of Dr.


Pike that as the residence of Mr. Mills contains provision for
complete isolation purposes he may be nursed in the house,
where are Mrs. Mills, a granddaughter, a female servant, and
a youth (a porter). Mr. John Mills was absent when the
isolation took place.
We understand the Chief Secretary has offered Messrs.
Boland and Scott, the contractors for the Scottsdale railway,
to provide for vaccinating free of charge the whole of their
employees on the line, and their families. As this would
involve between 800 and 900 persons, it would be a
somewhat formidable undertaking. The paymaster of the
firm, on his monthly visit to-day, is instructed to consult the
men as to whether they are agreeable to the operation. If
favourable, medical men will be immediately despatched to
the gangs.
It is a serious reflection on the Hobart authorities that the
constables on duty at the quarantine station have not
previously been vaccinated. The first step to remedy this
was taken yesterday, when the Surgeon-Superintendent of
the hospital, Dr. Thompson, vaccinated a batch of six. He is
desirous of operating on the rest of the men, as well as
vaccinating the railway officials if an adequate supply of
lymph is forwarded. Dr. Thompson vaccinated over fifty
applicants yesterday, and turned over one hundred others
away, not having sufficient lymph.
Mr. A. Evans announces in another column that he has a
large stock of strong carbolic soap, for disinfecting purposes.
Dr. Davis, public vaccinator, notifies in another column the
places on the North-West Coast at which he will vaccinate
gratuitously next week.
The Launceston Examiner

Sat 15 Oct 1887

The following official bulletin from the quarantine station was


posted at the Town Hall yesterday morning: - Mrs. Wilkinson,
died 8.30 this morning; Wm. Bishop, junr., still improving; B.
Larter, not quite so well; D. Storrer and S. Houston, doing
99

well; A. Bennett and Susannah Watson, slightly better; Leslie


Marshall, a little worse; Alfred Bennett and Susannah Watson,
about the same.
Mrs. Catherine Wilkinson, who was removed only on
Wednesday afternoon last to the station, died yesterday
morning at 8.30, making the seventh fatal case. The
disease in this case as in that of Chicks was of a deadly
hoemorrhatic nature. The deceased was a washerwoman,
had no family, and with her husband, a wharf labourer,
occupied the two front rooms of a cottage in Margaret-street.
She was interred yesterday afternoon, Archdeacon Hales
performing the service.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges the receipt of a parcel of fish from
Mr. Johnson, York-street; parcel of flowers from Miss Adams;
jar of jelly from Mr. Ditcham; and a crate of cabbages from
Mr. Henry Bennett, of Claremont.
When mentioning the first interment we stated the place of
burial was near the station. An impression, however, seems
to be abroad that bodies are interred on the race-course, but
such is not the case. The temporary cemetery is on a piece
of land to the south-east of the station, rented by the Local
Board from Mr. Jas. Lamont.
We are requested to state that John Mills should read
Albert Mills in yesterdays issue, and that he was absent
from home over three weeks prior to the isolation of the
premises in George-street.
DR. PIKE ON THE FIRST CASE
The following letter from Dr. Pike, dated 13 th inst., appears in
yesterdays Mercury: - Will you allow me to correct a slight
error in your editorial in to-days paper, and at the same time
to add a few facts gathered from the friends in Mrs.
Blanchflowers, Mrs. Whites and Mrs. Bishops cases.
You say in the editorial that Watsons was the first case, and
that Mrs. Blanchflower nursed Watson.
Watson and
Blanchflower were neighbours, and the only two families
100

living in the lane where the disease originated; otherwise


they had no communication with one another. Mrs. White
nursed Mrs. Blanchflower. The date of the first prescription
Dr. Murphy ordered for Mrs. Blanchflower was August 28, the
rash appeared on her on August 29. As small-pox takes
about a fortnight to develop, she must have been exposed to
the infection on or about August 15. I first saw Watson, who
had been ill two days, on September 15. The rash appeared
on September 17, so that he must have been exposed to the
infection about September 3. Mrs. White, Blanchflowers two
children, and Mrs. Bishop (Mrs. Blanchflowers mother), were
all seized with the illness before Watson.
The facts gathered from the friends in Mrs. Blanchflowers
case are these:-The husband and nurse, as well as visitors,
distinctly noticed the umbilication or pitting of the vesicles,
and when the spots became yellow (mattery), Mrs.
Blanchflower became very ill. Again, this does not quite
accord with Dr. Murphys remark, that after the acute
symptoms subsided before the appearance of this rash she
felt to all intents and purposes well. Dr. Murphy also
remarks another point in this case, the vesicles did not dry
and scab. The nurse and husband say the scabs in the
bedclothes were so uncomfortable for the patient that every
morning the bedclothes were brushed and the scabs thrown
into the fire.
As to Mrs. White and Mrs. Bishop, the friends in both cases
distinctly drew their attention to the peculiar look of the
pitting of the vesicles; when I saw these people on
September 24 the umbilication was very distinct. Dr. Murphy
remarks the other child (taken ill on September 10) appeared
more seriously ill, but as I am not in possession of facts from
actual observation, I would prefer to say nothing of the case.
(The doctor was attending it up to September 21). I saw the
child on September 24; the face, arms and hands were one
mass of scabs, torn in every direction by the child, owing to
the irritation. The child was taken out in its fathers arms,
wrapped up in the bedclothes in a covered ambulance, and
placed in the small-pox hospital, the floor of which was raised
from the ground, and the ground itself asphalted previously.
On the following day the rash took on the bleeding form (the
most fatal form of small-pox), and that, I think Dr. Murphy will
101

allow, is sufficient to cause


contracted in its removal.

death

without

any

cold

As to pitting, the only convalescent case was Mrs.


Blanchflowers, and the depressions from the forehead to
chin are so close that in places it would be difficult to put a
pins head between them; Dr. Murphy, I can safely say, is the
only man who has ever seen such pitting as this from
chicken-pox.
These facts, which will appear in the official notes of the
cases, do not certainly agree with Dr. Murphys careful
observations of the cases, but they quite agree with the
symptoms of small-pox, as usually described by authorities
on the matter.
By Electric Telegraph Hobart, Oct. 14
The Premier received a telegram to-day from the Sydney
Central Board of Health, stating that the board approved of
the regulations relating to Hobart vessels, and will also
advise their Government in the terms mentioned in the
Hobart Boards telegram of the 12th inst., which was to the
effect that every care would be taken that no passengers
from Launceston would leave by steamer from Hobart.
The Launceston Examiner
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Monday October 17, 1887

It is pleasing to state that no fresh cases of small-pox have


been reported since Thursday last, and that actually there
has been no new patients since Tuesday, a state of affairs
which is re-assuring. Medical men are of opinion that the
enemy is now almost if not quite conquered, and we trust
that it may be so.
The following bulletin was issued from the quarantine station
at 9.30 a.m. yesterday: - W. Bishop, jun., still improving; B.
Larter, very low; D. Storrer and S. Houston, convalescent;
Susannah Watson, improving; A. Bennett, doing well; L.
Marshall, slightly worse. It was also reported that Alfred Mills,
102

who is isolated, was improving. At 9 p.m. it was reported that


Alfred Bennett was not quite so well, and that it was feared
he would lose the sight of one eye. The state of the station
was as follows:- Patients, 4; convalescents, 14; suspects, 45;
all of whom, we may state, have now been vaccinated.
Benjamin Larter, who was reported in the morning as being
very ill, died at 4.15 p.m., this making the eighth death. The
body of deceased will be interred at 10 to-day. Larter, who
was removed to the station on the 6th inst., leaves a widow
and two children, who are now confined as suspects.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks, on behalf of the
patients, the receipt of the following:- Parcel of papers, from
Mrs. Chamberlain; box of cakes, two jars calves feet jelly,
Mrs. W. Johnson; box of books and papers, Mr. H. Friend; two
boxes of eggs, Mrs. Woolston and Mrs. Best; books and
papers and flowers from friends; parcel of books, Mr. Charles
Salomon; box of cornflour, sago, and pearl barley, from A
Sympathiser; box of books and playthings for the children,
from a friend; bags of oatmeal and pearl barley, Mr. D.
Ritchie; parcel of cakes, etc., Mrs. Sorell, Deloraine.
On Saturday night 39 persons who had been isolated for the
prescribed time were liberated, and were all in excellent
health and spirits.
The houses were those of Mr. W.
Sidebottom, Elphin-road; Mrs. King, Tamar-street; three
houses in Radfords Row; and the Railway Boarding-house,
Tamar-street, the occupants of which gave vent to their joy
by three hearty cheers. The house of Mrs. Baker, Charlesstreet, with seven occupants, was also declared free last
night. There are still 15 houses isolated.
We are informed that the first batch of suspects at the
quarantine station, to the number of 31, will probably be
liberated on Thursday or Friday.
The Chief Secretary (the hon. P.O. Fysh) arrived from the
capital by the express on Saturday, and in the afternoon, in
company with the Mayor and Mr. A. Mault, proceeded along
the St. Leonards and Scottsdale roads for the purpose of
inspecting sites which might be suitable for a quarantine
station, but no decision has yet been arrived at.
103

In our last issue we announced that Dr. Cotterell had been


appointed as the second public vaccinator for Launceston.
He will vaccinate gratuitously daily at McCrackens buildings,
opposite the Wesleyan Church, Patterson-street.
It is satisfactory to know that, taught by recent experience,
the Government have taken all precautions for dealing with
any case of infection should such unfortunately occur in or
near the capital. The quarantine station at Lindisfarne Bay
has been put into thorough working order, and could be
occupied immediately, and the services of a medical man
have been secured should they be needed.

104

ADMINISTRATION OF PUBLIC HEALTH ACT (Examiner


Mon 17 Oct, 1887)
Article by Charles Pike
Sir, - As I am sailing under somewhat false colours as medical
officer to the Local Board f Health, will you allow me to make
a few explanatory remarks.
The Local Board of Health has been acting really without any
medical adviser, as you will see from the reports of the
meeting of the board that I have never been present at any
of them. I am then only nominally medical officer of health
for the purpose of signing certain certificates, which under
the Health Act must be signed by a medical officer of health.
Cojointly with this nominal position, I am employed by
Government to attend all fresh cases of small-pox in the town
until their removal to the quarantine ground at Mowbray.
I have no power, nor I believe has any one else any, to send
any small-pox patient or suspect out of their homes unless
they are without proper lodging or accommodation, or are
lodged in any common lodging-house or other house where
isolation cannot be effectively carried out. Hitherto they
have all gladly gone out to the quarantine ground the
patients for the sake of having proper nursing and medical
attendance, the suspects in order to get out of a house where
the disease has been present. With regard to Mr. Storrer, it
was suggested by the officer of the Local Board of Health that
he might be isolated at home but I pointed out that he would
not be, as the dwelling houses and shop were in one building,
and if he stayed at home there was great danger of the
goods becoming infected. In Mr Mills cased the dwelling
house is quite separate from the shop and there is no
connection whatever between the patients bedroom, which
is on the second storey, and the second storey of the shop.
Regarding isolation I have pointed out to the Board that in my
opinion it is only necessary to isolate houses where the
disease has actually been present or the inmates have been
in contact with the patients in a contagious stage. Under the
first head would come Blanchflowers, Bishops, Watsons,
Pearsons, Hines, Bessells, Larters, Bennells, Marshalls,
Wilkinsons, Mills and under the second heading Whites, S.
Watsons, Storrers, Rowes. Where washing has been put
105

out for any of the infected people I have also recommended


the isolation of the washerwoman, as the same contagion
that gave the disease to the infected person may still remain
in the clothes and be handed on to the washerwoman.
According to the local papers the Sanitary Officer asserts that
in other countries the house is isolated when premonitory
symptoms occur. This assertion is quite absurd, as no one
can diagnose small-pox by its premonitory symptoms, or until
the rash has taken on its characteristic appearance, and as a
matter of fact in all of the cases that have occurred since the
patients went to Mowbray, the treatment has been for some
other complaint, and not small-pox, until the rash developed,
in one was lumbago, in another worm fever, in another
bilious attack, in another convulsions.
I have pointed out that it is not necessary to isolate houses
where the inmates have not been in contact with patients in
the contagious stage, and given it as my opinion that it is not
contagious till the characteristic rash has developed. In
accordance with this a host of unnecessary isolations would
have been dispensed with and much annoyance to citizens
avoided. The Sanitary Officer gave as an excuse for the
number of isolations that if it were decided earlier that the
disease was small pox there would be no need for so much
isolation, instancing Marshalls case as one in point; for my
own part I did not feel justified in recommending a family to
go into quarantine until I was perfectly satisfied that one of
them was suffering from small-pox (particularly as I could
trace no source of contagion) and they quite sensibly
voluntarily isolated themselves until I was sure of the
diagnosis. As a matter of fact the only isolation arising from
that case was, I believe, the house in which the disease arose
and that was because another family, a man and his wife,
lived in the lower storey, and they preferred being isolated
there to going into the already crowded quarantine ground at
Mowbray.
Concerning the destruction of bedding which a small-pox
patient has used, and particularly in the case where death
has occurred, I have repeated urged immediate disinfection
and destruction by fire, but even now I understand that the
106

bedding where the first cases arose and where the second
death occurred is still unburnt.
Every praise is due to the Local Board of Health for the
precautionary measures they have adopted, but it must be
admitted that they have been a little ill-advised, and in the
future these shortcomings will doubtless be remedied by
their having a medical man in their conference to assist them
with his advice in a purely medical matter. Yours, etc.,
Charles J. Pike.
Oct 15 PS Since writing the above this morning I hear that
the bedding has been burnt in some though not in all, of the
infected houses. Unless the wearing apparel in all the
houses is thoroughly disinfected and that can only be done
by subjecting them to heat though the present outbreak
may be at an end, the disease will be sure to crop up again.
The Launceston Examiner Tuesday October 18, 1887
LOCAL BOARD OF HEALTH DEATH RETURN
The Deputy Registrar reported the following return of deaths
registered in the district of Launceston during the week
ending October 15:-Males-81 years, senility: 77 years, dropsy:
11 months, congestion of the brain; 5 years, small-pox: 1
year 11 months, smallpox: 32 years, small-pox: 34 years,
heart disease. Females 8 years, small-pox, 7 months,
convulsions: 34 years, small-pox: 25 years, small-pox.
SANITARY OFFICERS REPORT
The Sanitary Officer reported as follows: - In continuation of
my report in connection with the outbreak of small-pox in the
town. I beg to state that I am unable to arrive at a
satisfactory explanation as to its introduction, but have a
conviction that when the cause is ascertained it will be found
to have originated in and to be intimately connected with the
Blanchflower and Pearson families. Progress Cases of
small-pox 9, sent to Mowbray, 4; treated at home, 1;
suspects sent to quarantine, 5; houses isolated, 4; persons in
isolated houses, 17; persons released from isolation, 39. Of
the eight fatal cases six were unvaccinated, and two are
107

doubtful; one of the two having no mark and the other only
said to be vaccinated. Marshalls case is not satisfactorily
linked yet; Wilkinson linked with Larter, etc., Houston linked
with Watson, etc., Mills linked with Storrer.
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The Mayor said the small-pox outbreak seemed now to have
been grappled with, and those persons still under
surveillance were not showing any signs of the disease. The
bedding which was found in the infected houses had been
burned, but there were some clothes still remaining. They
had been thoroughly disinfected, but he should like to know
the decision of the board regarding the clothes, as to whether
they were to be burned or not. The Sanitary Officer had
assured him that the articles had been thoroughly
disinfected.
Mr Sadler asked was there any proper place for disinfecting?
The Mayor said there was not, but the Sanitary Officer
disinfected the things used by small-pox patients.
Mr. Sadler said it would be well for a permanent place to be
built in which the things could be disinfected. If they had to
burn them it would be a heavy expense on the Government.
The Mayor said the Local Board of Health would have to pay
for the clothes.
Mr. Farrelly said there was a heating apparatus at the hospital
which he believed could be utilised for the purpose. He
would recommend that the clothes be disinfected at the
hospital.
The Mayor said it would be necessary to ask the chairman of
the Hospital Board about the matter.
Mr. Button said there was no doubt cotton clothes could be
boiled, but they would require a great deal of boiling to make
them thoroughly safe. They had no place for disinfecting
clothes. He would recommend that clothes known to have
been used in infected houses be destroyed, as he was sure
that nothing less than that would satisfy the public.
108

Mr. Scott said it would damn the board in the eyes of the
whole community if they were to send the clothes to the
hospital.
A lengthy discussion then ensued, during which Mr. Bushman
stated that he had boiled most of the clothes used in infected
houses, whilst others he had burned. The matter then
dropped.
Mr. Farrelly said he had received a petition from Mr. H. Fraser
asking that the isolation of his house should be withdrawn, as
it had now been guarded several days and no disease had
broken out.
Mr. Scott said he would raise his voice against it.
After further discussion it was decided not to entertain the
petition.
Mr. Dean asked if it was true a batch of Chinamen were
landed in Launceston on Saturday from Sydney without
having been inspected.
Mr. Farrelly said they did not come from an infected port.
The Mayor said he would like to see a law making it
compulsory for all Chinamen to be vaccinated.
Mr Dean asked whether it was true that a man had stayed at
Bishops Hotel with the small-pox and then gone to
Beaconsfield.
The Mayor said there was something in it and the matter was
being enquired into by the Chief Secretary.
Mr. Scott said he had been assured by Mr. S. Hawkes that the
Chinaman who died in the Moorina district had small-pox,
and after he died his friends buried him and then burned the
hut down.
The Mayor said enquiries would be made into the matter.
109

Mr. A. Mault, who had just arrived at the meeting, said on


behalf of the Premier he had telegraphed to Mr. Bomford, J.P.,
at Moorina, that day, saying it had been reported that a
Chinaman had died from some eruptive disease in his
neighbourhood, and asked him to enquire. Mr. Bomford had
telegraphed to him that only two Chinamen had died there,
one of gastric ulcer and the other of phthisis.
The Mayor said he would obtain further information.
The board rose at 4.50 p.m.
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK (Launceston Examiner 18th Oct, 1887)
The prospects of a speedy termination of the small-pox
epidemic are still bright, there being no fresh cases to report
and no patients under surveillance, and it is hoped that this
state of affairs will induce the Victorian health authorities to
relax the stringent quarantine regulations now in force.
The bulletin issued from the quarantine station at 9.30 a.m.
yesterday was as follows:-W. Bishop, jun., still doing well;
Susannah Watson, improving; L. Marshall, had a good night,
but still very bad; A. Bennett, not so well; other patients
doing well. At 9 p.m. W. Bishop and Susannah Watson were
reported as improving, and practically out of danger; A.
Bennett and Leslie Marshall still very bad, but the formers
eye was better.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges the receipt of the following on
behalf of those confined at the station:- Vegetables, from
Mrs. H. Smith; jar of jam, Mr. W. Hart; a case of cake, from a
friend.
We recently mentioned that an experiment was being made
by Dr. Pardey, who inoculated a calf with the virus from a
small-pox patient, but without success. Another trial was on
Saturday made with a second calf, and we understand that in
this instance the inoculation has been successful.
Yesterday the public vaccinators were kept busy, no less than
140 persons being operated upon by them. Dr. Thompson
110

visited the Government railway station in the afternoon and


vaccinated 68 employees in 55 minutes, a feat which
certainly beats the record so far as Launceston is
concerned. Dr. Cotterell was in attendance at McCrackens
buildings, Patterson-street, between noon and 1 p.m. and 3
and 5 p.m. and operated upon 80 individuals, including men,
women and children. He also vaccinated 40 persons at his
own residence. Dr. Cotterell informs us that last week he
performed about five hundred operations.
Considerable dissatisfaction has recently been expressed in
town regarding the bedding of patients being left in infected
houses, and therefore it is satisfactory to state that that used
in the houses of Messrs. Bishop, Rowe, Larter, and Mrs. Hines
was yesterday committed to the flames, and the bedding in
Mr. D. Storrers house will be burnt to-day. That in the other
infected houses was destroyed last week.
The Chief Secretary (the hon. P.O. Fysh) was yesterday
engaged in connection with health matters, but nothing has
yet been decided upon regarding a site for a quarantine
station, although there is a place in view.
We understand that Mr. W.C. Grubb has declined to grant the
use of any more ground in connection with the quarantine
station at Mowbray, and in consequence of the decisions of
the Tasmanian Turf Club to hold their usual summer race
meeting, the ground on which the station stands must
provided no unexpected contingencies arise in accordance
with the previous agreement, be cleared by the end of
November.
To-day a number of extra tents will be erected at Mowbray for
the accommodation of convalescents, who will be removed
from the hospital.
Mr. W. Bishop thanks his friends on behalf of himself and
family for their nice presents.
In yesterdays Mercury appears a thoughtful and exceedingly
apropos article on the present epidemic, from which we
extract the following:- We have come face to face with a
danger which, s long as it was remote, we disregarded, and
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has compelled us to ask ourselves the question whether the


safety of the community is to be placed at the mercy of the
ignorant, the incapable, and the fadists, or whether science
and experience are to be utilised for the safeguarding of the
community. The public has already come to the conclusion,
we think, that a dangerous disease must be treated in the
same way as any other calamity, that is, the comfort, the
bigotry, and even the liberty of the few, if necessary, must be
made to give way to the general welfare. If one portion of
the town was on fire, nobody would hesitate to blow up
houses to save the other portion, even though certain
wiseacres believed that fires did not spread, and insisted
that an Englishmans house was his castle, and it was his
sacred right to let it be burned if he chose. In like manner, if
any enemy was at our gates, or if an enemy threatened to
invade us, we should not listen to the nonsense of those, and
they would be sure to be many, who declared that the enemy
never would do any damage, or that he would go away if he
was only let alone. Now the rule which applies in all these
cases, about which there is no doubt at all, applies tenfold
force to an invasion of disease, which kills more than are
slain in a battle, and produces misery, the extent of which no
man can possibly calculate.
The question is whether
ignorance or knowledge shall rule. We have to consider
whether we shall set aside the conclusions of those who are
eminently qualified to investigate facts and give the results
of patient study, or whether we are to allow those who have
neither the qualifications nor capacity for the work to rule,
and to permit our lives and our happiness, so far as it
depends on the lives of others, to be endangered because we
fear to deal with a fool according to his folly. If a man
chooses to say that he will not allow himself or his family to
be isolated when he or they have a dangerous disease, the
time for argument has gone by, and the time for action has
come. As it happens to be proved, beyond the possibility of
doubt, that the one way in which certain disease can be
prevented from becoming chronic is by means of isolation,
and by isolation only, the community as a whole must do
what is necessary, just as it proceeds to lock up a madman,
or one whose views are dangerous to the community. We
have seen a whole family killed through one child with
diphtheria not having been isolated, and whole communities
have suffered innumerable woes and losses solely because a
112

case of plague or small-pox has not been isolated at once.


Had the first case of the plague of London, which broke out in
Chancery Lane, been isolated, England would have been
saved from a dire calamity. In like manner, if the small-pox in
Launceston had been let alone, as the plague was, Tasmania
would have had the disease established, and been isolated
from the rest of the Australasian colonies. Argument and
reason are, of course, addressed only to those who can
understand them, so that the opinion of those who do not
know cannot outweigh the opinion of those who do know.
By Electric Telegraph Hobart, Oct. 17
A cablegram was received to-day by the acting-secretary of
the Hobart Central Board of Health from the secretary of the
New South Wales Board of Health as follows: - Kindly make it
known that all vessels from your colony for New South Wales
must make directly for Sydney to receive pratique, also that
the masters will be required to furnish to the Health Officer a
nominal list of all persons on board, and give particulars of
their whereabouts for the previous month, stating, if possible,
their intended address in this colony. Masters should prepare
this list during the voyage, so as to save delay on arrival.
A WORD FITLY SPOKEN
Sir the letter of Archdeacon Hales in your paper of Friday
was most welcome, most opportune, not only for his kind
remarks respecting our noble profession of medicine, but also
for the words of practical wisdom with which it abounds.
What with lectures delivered by men not lacking in selfconceit, but surecharged with ignorance; what with attractive
placards warning people against vaccination; what with the
gossip of kindly but mistaken ladies over their afternoon
tea, charging medical men with introducing disease into the
bodies of their children, with utter indifference as to the
result, for the sake of a few trumpery five shilling or halfcrown fees; what with the dogmatically uttered opinions of
men over their pipes and ale, expressed in the curt, but very
intelligible phrase of I dont believe in it, and each of these
forms of opposition upheld and encouraged by persons of
whom better things might have been expected, vaccination
113

and vaccinators have had a rather sore time of it for the last
two or three years.
That one of the greatest boons which a merciful Providence
has placed in our hands to meet the ravages of a fearful
scourge, should incur so much opposition, is one out of many
instances of the frailties of our common nature, and therefore
the Archdeacons letter and your won staunch report, Mr.
Editor, of the practice of vaccination are deserving of our
best and warmest recognition. Yours etc., D. Rock, Deloraine,
Oct. 15.
HOW WE WERE QUARANTINED ON THE COAST
Sir, - Having business on the N.W. Coast I thought I would like
a sea trip, so I sailed away in the s.s. Devon. We left the
wharf on Tuesday, September 27, in that fine little ship, with
a good cargo and a sturdy crew. I cannot say much for her
skipper, he has given me such a doing. All went well until
reaching Tamar Heads, when a telegram came to inform us
that a sailor who had been absent about a week from the
ship had small-pox. Then fear struck into our hearts, all but
the skipper; he commenced to fire up and destroy clothes,
and seemed to be inclined to stifle us all with sulphur.
In the afternoon we arrived at Formby. A policeman standing
o the wharf told us straight we must not land; ad I am sorry
to say one refractory member went ashore on his own hook.
Police tried to apprehend him; no use; he would not come
aboard until that villain of a skipper sung out Ponto. Then
we were ordered aft, to anchor in the stream. That evening
happy news came; passengers can land, cargo as well. I
unfortunately stopped on board, thinking, with all the smoke,
I was safer there than on shore. We sailed next morning and
entered a pretty little river called the Leven, landed our
cargo, and proceeded merrily on our way, only there
happened to be two of our best men down getting their
breakfast. In good time anchored in Emu Bay, when that
horrid captain sent a boat ashore for more sulphur. Like his
impudence when he could see the shore lined with rurals and
officials. The next I heard was heartrending cries from the
shore, Keep off, keep off; you must not land! In fact the
114

scene would have done justice to one of Shakespeares


tragedies. Boat returned to the ship, the bobbies keeping
strict watch on the shore in case the two men that were
down to breakfast should attempt to land. We seemed to
have only one friend on the Bay, one brave man that came
out in a boat every eighteen minutes, asking if we were in
want of anything. The next day several gentlemen actually
came alongside; one they told me was a doctor. He stood on
the ladder outside, looked at us, and seemed to be rather
amused at our trouble. Next morning the skipper got rusty,
and swore if there was any change he would make us
swallow one quart of cream of tartar every four hours. I
meant to rebel at that, for how can he be a judge of smallpox when doctors dont always know? Next move ordered off
to Bryants Bay; midnight came, heavy sea setting in; dark
clouds to windward; hard-hearted officials to leeward; up
anchor and away. The good little ship steamed out of the
bay, breasting the waves like a sea-bird, and shortly after
daylight steamed round George Town, signal flying for doctor,
whistle blowing like mad; some sailor in steamer alongside
the wharf rushed out of his bed nearly under bare poles
singing out Keep away, keep away. I feel sick already; then
on we went to Bryants Bay. Eight oclock came. 12 men
down, not with small-pox, but to breakfast; you ought to see
those fellows feed. Same afternoon (Friday) we got a doctor
on board. I thought the skipper smoked us pretty well, but he
was not a patch on the doctor; anyhow, I believe he did us all
good excepting the captain, for all his trouble seemed to be
about the smelting works being waiting for tin ore.
The doctor pronounced us to be all well and hearty, and after
branding us all carefully on the left arm, left us again in our
solitude. On Wednesday went up to the Point at Launceston,
and that night got released from quarantine. Left Launceston
Thursday morning, and after a fine run got to Stanley the
same afternoon after calling at Emu Bay, heartily glad to get
out of the clutches of the skipper and his infernal sulphur.
Yours etc., SULPHUR, Studley, Oct. 13.
Small-Pox Outbreak
Sir,_No doubt you find as a rule that the new chum is ready
toteach, when he ought to be anxious to learn. But, in the
present trouble that has befallen your town, the experiences
115

of one who, in an official position, has lately had to help to


grapple with similar difficulty at home may be of some little
use to you. Small-pox was brought into our town during the
summer of 1886. The Town Council at once empowered the
Health Committee to take all necessary steps for checking
the disease. The committee delegated to a sub-committee
of three all such powers as were needed for prompt action.
Our duties were twofold; first, to look after the patients;
second, to prevent the malady from spreading. We had no
permanent hospital, and had the greatest difficulty in
obtaining the ground for a temporary camp.
It was
necessary therefore to .the first sufferers in their own
houses. Each infected house was supplied with proper
disinfectants, which were used under the direct supervision
of the medical officers and the Inspector of Nuisances. Such
people as were living in such a house were required to
remain within it till all fear of their developing the disease
was over. Above all, these inmates, and also the inmates of
the adjoining houses, were induced to allow themselves to be
re-vaccinated. A watchman, not in uniform, was set to
prevent Ingress to and aggress from an infected house.
These measures proved thoroughly effectual; but the main
difficulty in checking the spread of the malady lay in the
:scare; and here, if I may be allowed to say so, the people of
your town have something to learn. If every one, who is
unfortunated enough to contract small-pox, is to be carried
away to hospital, and every suspect to be quarantined, you
so frighten some of the more timid folk that they will not
consult a medicl man in the early and harmless stages of the
malady, but will conceal their symptoms till it has reached
the contagious phase. This is the greatest difficulty that will
have to be contended with. With all deference to the
powers that be may I suggest that is one or two matters,
much might be done to lessen the scare, and so shorten
the duration of the epidemic. First then, is there not too
much washing of dirty linen in public? Why the columns in
your papers?
Why the publication of the names and
addresses of sufferers and suspects? No doubt the public is
anxious to know all details, but the public is not always wise
in its anxiety. Then the policy of carrying away suspects
seems to me very doubtful indeed. Get all such persons to
be re-vaccinated, and to stay in their own homes, if you will,
but do not frighten your own townsfolk and would-be visitors
116

by quarantine regulations which are not absolutely


necessary. Lastly, do away with those useless barricades,
and with watchmen in uniform, and cease to warn passersby off the footpath when opposite infected houses. In
thelargest hope that your authorities may soon succeed in
their efforts to stamp out the troublesome malady._Yours,
etc., J. OBERLIN-HARRIS
SMALL-POX IN LAUNCESTON
Sir, - I notice in your issue of Friday last that you republish a
letter emanating from Dr. Pike that appeared in the Mercury
on the 14th inst., re small-pox in Launceston, and I cannot but
remark that you did not extend the same courtesy to me,
inasmuch as you suppressed a report furnished by me to the
Local Board of Health, and which appeared in extenso in the
Mercury issue of October 12, on the same subject. However,
I trust you will do me the justice in affording me space for
some remarks concerning Dr. Pikes and his so-called
friends statements.
He has taken upon himself to question the accuracy of the
contents of my report, and to dilate somewhat upon the
symptoms, course and termination of the disease: smallpox,
and more especially with regard to the cases of Blanchflower,
Bishop and White, studiously avoiding the case of Watson.
Now, as an impression pervades the public mind that I
attended Watson, will you allow me to state most
emphatically that I had nothing whatever to do with the case,
and that Dr. Pike was in attendance from the beginning to the
fatal issue.
The facts gathered from the friends in Mrs. Blanchflowers
case, so states Dr. Pike, without my going into detail, appear
to be totally at variance with my report, and on the face of
them in many respects are absurd. I will just quote two
instances-The husband and nurse as well as visitors
distinctly noticed the umbilication and pitting of the
vesicles. Now I would just point out that I can hardly realise
Mr Blanchflower or the friends making that statement and I
would venture to assert that neither Mr Blanchflower nor all
his friends would have the slightest conception what
umbilication means; therefore that statement must have
been manufactured for them. Again, it is not possible for
117

umbilication and pitting to be present at the same time;


there may be umbilications of the vesicles but the pitting
does not take place until after the vesicles have dried and
thescab fallen off, and as neither were present, I doubt the
whole statement, as even allowing both were present they
would only show at different stages of the cse, and what ??
and powers of observation Mr. Blanchflower and friends must
have had for ?? professional people. Again, the friends and
nurse state that the scabbing was so profuse that the beds
had to be brushed out every day. I stated in my report that
desquamation of the cuticle was taking place pretty
estensively, but this is a very different thing from scabbing in
small-pox, as it is simply a peeling of the skin, and Dr. Pike
knows surely that such a condition is by no means common
in other diseases than small-pox, so that relly his statement,
or theirs, in this instance is a fallacy. The same deductions
may be drawn from the whole of the statements of the
friends, and I state most emphatically that my report is
correct in every particular, and I am prepared to attest it on
oath, and I repeat that the report poublished by Dr. Pike
under cover as statements of the friends is grossly
misleading, and not in accordance with fact. I could correct
in detail the whole of his report, but the public press is not
the place for a discussion of a purely medical character and
on a subject the public would fail to grasp.
Again, it appears to me that Dr. Pike has bloomed into and
presumably would pose as an expert on small-pox. If he is
such an outhority and has such wonderful powers of
discrimination, will he explain to myself and the public how
he came to report the cases of Watson whom he attended
for six days as measles, and followed suit in the cse of
Pearson? And it was not till within a few hours of Watsons
death, and I learn at the investigation of another medical
man (report says some old woman), that he suddenly
altered his opinion and reported the case as confluent smallpox. He evidently did not perceive the..pitting as did
Blanchflower and friends. Now the distinctive diagnostic
symptoms between measles and confluent smallpox (as
represented) are as wide as the . And as he credits me
with being the only man who has ever seen such ????? from
chicken-pox (an inference, by the way, never drawn my me),
I return the compliment by remarking that I can safely say he
118

is the only man that could have construed a case of confluent


small-pox into one of measles. I will just add, by way of a
finish, that I think the worthy doctor has got a little mixed, as
I find he reports one of the Blanchflowers children as a case
of chicken-pox, Watson and Pearson as measles, and other
cases as small-pox. Now if we differe in other respects, I am
in unison with him as to Blanchflowers child, but would add
that having examined this child I failed to discover any
deviation in the rash to that of the younger brother and Mrs.
White, inmates of the same house, and have no hesitation in
pronouncing them one and the same disease.
Reverting to another subject, I am credited with not having
reported Blanchflowers and Whites cases to the Sanitary
Officer. I may perhaps be allowed to enlighten the public by
stating that the Sanitary Officer was in full possession of the
facts of these cases ten days prior to any report of small-pox
by Dr. Pike, and I am taking steps to vindicate myself on this
point, as the Sanitary Officer has not had the honesty to have
mentioned the fact, although I have given him ample time
and opportunity for doing._Yours etc., R.W. Murphy.
The Launceston Examiner
1887

Wednesday October 19,

SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
It is a matter of great gratification that the quiescent state of
affairs reported the past few days in connection with the
small-pox outbreak still continues. There are no further
cases reported, and the quarantine patients now number
only four.
The official bulletin from the quarantine station, issued
yesterday morning at 10, was as follows:-William bishop, jun.,
doing well; Susannah Watson, doing very well; Leslie
Marshall, passed a good night, but still very bad; A. Bennett,
still very bad, eye improving.
Alfred Mills yesterday was progressing favourably, the
disease in his case being of a very mild form indeed.
119

Last evening Dr. Pardey reported that William Bishop, jun.,


and Susannah Watson were doing well; Alfred Bennett and
Leslie Marshall were still very bad. State of hospital
Patients, 4; convalescents, 14; suspects, 45.
Mr. W. Bishop telephones from the quarantine station that
there is no truth in the supposition stated in the meeting of
the Local Board of Health on Monday, that a man had stayed
at Bishops Hotel having small-pox and gone to Beaconsfield.
A well-known resident of Beaconsfield also states there is no
foundation for the rumour of this person having developed
the disease at Beaconsfield, and the matter having been
hushed up.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, with thanks, the receipt of the
following presents for the patients:-Ten cases of oranges and
three cases of apples, from the hon. P.O. Fysh; a ton of
biscuits, from Mrs. W.H. Knight and Mr. C. Russen, box of
eggs, from Mr. W. Luck; parcel of books, etc., from Mrs. E. G.
Fulton, Forth, and Mrs. John Howard; vegetables, flowers, and
jellies, from Mrs. C. H. Smith and Mrs. W. Hart, and three
parcels from unknown donors.
The ketch Strathmore, quarantined at Bryants Bay since the
3rd inst. was released yesterday at noon, the Port Health
Officer, Dr. Thompson, giving her a clean bill of health.
Sergeant Callaghan, on behalf of the police guard at the
quarantine station, thanks the proprietor of the Launceston
Examiner for a daily supply of that journal for their use.
Dr. Thompson, Hospital Surgeon Superintendent, vaccinated
50 people during yesterday, besides operating in the evening
on the staff of the postal officials. Dr. Cotterell was very
busily engaged operating in the announced hours yesterday.
In pursuance of a decision arrived at by the Local Board of
Health at their meeting on Thursday evening last steps are
being taken to prosecute Dr. Murphy, for failing to furnish a
certificate of contagious disease in the case of the family
Blanchflower. We understand that Mr. R. Byron Miller has
been engaged to represent the Local Board, and Mr. G.T.
Collins will appear for Dr. Murphy.
120

It is, we believe, the intention of the Government at a


suitable time to authorise a commission of enquiry to
investigate the incidental circumstances in connection with
the outbreak and spread of the disease.
Mr. Mault, Inspector to the Central Board of Health, visited
the quarantine station yesterday, and laid out the sites for
the additional tents, which will be erected by Mr. H.T. Russell,
and are intended for the use of the convalescents and also to
provide room for further suspects should any further
developments of the outbreak occur.
Dr. Haines will vaccinate at Longford gratis daily, from 8 a.m.
to 10 a.m. (Sundays excepted). And at Cressy on Thursdays,
from 1 p.m. till 2 p.m.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
We are not identified with opinions of correspondents.
Chicken Pox in Launceston.
Sir, In answer to Dr. Murphys polite note in your issue of
today, I beg to state I did not question the accuracy of the
contents of his reports. I merely added a few facts that had
escaped his observation, and as in my letter I was only
arguing as to the nature of the disease of Blanchflower and
Co. I did not mention Watson, as I was quite satisfied as to
his disease.
The doctor quotes The husband and nurse, as well as
visitors, distinctly noticed the umbilication and pitting of the
vesicles.
My idea was to explain to the public that
umbilication meant pitting or rather depression in the top
of the vesicles, and I was not referring to the pitting of the
skin that follows scabbing. This way of reading it would have
saved the doctor writing from the beginning of the
paragraph - The facts, etc, down to non-professional
people.
Desquamation of cuticle versus scabs I really think scabs
gain the verdict.
Yes may in scarlet fever get such
desquamation as to be uncomfortable for the patient, in
121

chicken-pox you never do, but in small-pox the scabs


certainly do become troublesome, and in this case they really
were so; at least so say all of us I mean the friends.
I do not presume to pose as an expert in small-pox, not being
so far satisfied with my own diagnostic power (the doctor
will pardon the plagiarterm ), but perhaps the doctor will
refer to his diary and see there that I was called in by him on
January 26 1885, to decide on a (not very) doubtful case in
Cimitere Street, which had been reported by him as
suspicious of small-pox.
As to my calling in another medical man, he is the old
woman I suppose that the doctor refers to, and he was very
useful to the town this time (old age, I would add, is
respected by most intellectual people). My mind was pretty
well made up beforehand, and Dr. Murphy can learn from Dr
Hallowes, the gentleman who kindly consented to confirm or
disagree with my diagnosis, that he knew what he was going
to visit, and that my opinion was not changed so suddenly as
Dr. Murphy thinks. Of course I was greatly in error in not
distinguishing Watsons disease earlier, but I will quote, for
Dr. Murphys edification, from Dr. Ringers lectures as follows:
- The only disease that can possibly be mistaken for measles
is confluent small-pox. The rash of measles comes out on the
fourth day, smallpox generally on the third day; coryza (?)
(running from eyes and nose) is an early symptom in
measles, a later one in small-pox. In both Watsons and
Pearsons cases the attack came on with coryza and, and the
rash appeared on the fourth day, and it was not till Pearsons
grandfather showed the disease in the discrete form that my
suspicions were aroused. For Dr. Murphys edification also I
quote from Dr Ringers lecture regarding chicken-pox No
initial fever (certainly never reaching 106 deg) very, very
rare in adults, rash appears in 34(?) hours, never fatal.
Concerning Blanchflowers child, I would point out to the
doctor that Blanchflower had three children, and the one I
referred to was an infant five months old, so it could not very
well have had a younger brother, and that it was returned to
its mothers house (after an absence of 18 days), only the
day before Dr. Murphy saw it. It was quite well on Monday,
19th September; cross and restless on Tuesday morning, 30 th
122

September; and the rash began to come out on Tuesday


evening (vide quotation from Dr. Ringers lecture on chickenpox. However, I am glad to be able to agree with the doctor
on this one point, that this child had chicken-pox.
But we must pause here. Dr. Murphy has no hesitation in
pronouncing Mrs. White and the other inmates of
Blanchflowers house, to have the same disease as this child,
viz., chickenpox: and yet he thought it necessary to report
these cases verbally to the Sanitary Officer ten days
previously. Was the Sanitary Officer to take any action of
chickenpox being reported or did Dr. Murphy wish the
Sanitary Officer to decide for him whether it was chickenpox
or smallpox? Alas! who can tell? Yours etc. Charles J Pike
Oct 18.
The Launceston Examiner Thursday October 20, 1887
SMALL-POX OUTBREAK
Happily a week has elapsed since the last advance in the
small-pox development. On Thursday last Alfred Mills, the
most recent case, was quarantined, and he is reported
progressing satisfactorily.
The official bulletin yesterday morning from the quarantine
station stated as follows:-Wm. Bishop, jun., and Susannah
Watson doing well;
Alfred Bennett and Leslie Marshall
passed a good night, doing as well as can be expected; all
the rest well. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported that William
Bishop jun. And Susannah Watson were still doing well;
Alfred Bennett had got over small-pox and his eye was
better, but he was suffering from bronchitis; Leslie Marshall
was slightly improved.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks, on behalf of the
inmates, the receipt of a fine sheep from Mrs. Grubb, of
Newnham.
An isolated house, that of John Watson, of Cameron-street,
occupied by himself and wife, was released last night, having
been under surveillance since the 5 th inst., and the inmates
being all well.
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It was understood that the first batch of suspects and


convalescents would be released from the station to-day.
The exact time is in abeyance, and depends on the progress
which is being made with the thorough cleansing of their
respective dwellings. This has been found to be a formidable
task, arrangements having to be made, in addition, to
replace the domestic articles destroyed.
We believe that satisfactory progress was made yesterday in
the erection of five reserve tents for housing suspects if
needed, which according to present appearances will not be
the case. Three of these are capable of accommodating
three persons and the others two each, the object of their
erection being to enable the classes of suspects to be kept
distinct. They are constructed with a boarded floor and
skirtings, the upper portion being canvas with flies, and are
well ventilated though impervious to wind and weather. They
are put up to meet any emergency, are moveable, and are
placed between the present wards and the roadway.
The Port Health Officer, Dr. Thomson, yesterday gave a clean
bill of health to the s.s. Angerton, for Sydney, and the s.s.
Corinna, for the same port, via Formby.
The Surgeon-Superintendent of the Launceston Hospital has
had what was thought might prove a suspicious case under
his charge since Monday. On that day, a young man,
apparently a labourer, but who said he was a seaman
belonging to the ketch Pauline, was taken to the hospital on
the order of the chairman of the board. Somehow he was put
on board the s.s. Indignant at George Town, but his story on
arrival was incoherent, and nothing definite could be
extracted as to his antecedents. The man was evidently
suffering from some acute disease, and Dr. Thompson had
him isolated in the hospital grounds under the charge of a
warder. The symptoms developed have been watched with
some anxiety, but yesterday it was evident the case was one
of typhoid fever.
Whats in a name has been a debateable subject since
Shakespeare raised the question, but the query of what
might be in a little vowel received a practical answer in our
124

last issue, where a misplaced letter increased the liberality of


some donors to the inmates at the quarantine station over a
hundredfold. There is a wide difference in value though not
in spelling between a tin and a ton of biscuits; but our
Longford correspondent could not let the poor printers
error pass unnoticed, and writes:-The liberality, as reported
in to-days issue, of Mrs. W.H. Knight and Mr. C. Russen, of
Launceston, in sending a ton of biscuits to the quarantine
station as a present to the patients there has been very
favourable commented upon here, and is thought to be well
worthy of imitation by others. It would, perhaps, scarcely be
fair, or might by some be even construed into something
akin to imposing upon good nature, to solicit an encore.
CIRCULAR HEAD
Although happily free from the actual presence of the dread
small-pox, Circular Head shares in the general depression
and discomfort incidental to the outbreak of the disease. No
Melbourne steamer has put in an appearance since the 28 th
ultimo, but for the visits of the Devon many articles of daily
consumption would be wanting. In the interests of trade
every effort should be made to reassure our neighbours over
the water; but recent events are scarcely calculated to
remove unpleasantness or induce confidence in our sanitary
arrangements.
To denounce in language strictly
Parliamentary the action of the Melbourne authorities as
ungrateful, cowardly, and atrocious shows a spirit smarting
under injustice; to talk of isolating Launceston in the
interests of Hobart shows confounded inconsistency. At a
public meeting held at the capital the question of cutting off
all communication with Launceston was gravely considered,
the mover of the resolution ingenuously pointing out that if
this were done we should be fairly justified in asking the
other colonies to relax the present stringent quarantine
regulations, so far as this clean port of Hobart was
concerned. (The italics are mine, gentle compositor.) This
tale of two cities will sound oddly to those who see in the
petty animosity of the northern and southern towns nought
but a spirit of healthy emulation. Healthy emulation is good,
but small-pox aint healthy, no how you fix it.
125

Formby followed the capital joke in the matter of excursion


trains, but fortunately both at Hobart and the Mersey rational
men were sufficiently in the ascendant to keep absurdity
within due bounds. The mere knowledge of such agitations
will, I fear, create unfavourable impressions amongst our
foreign relations over the way.
A large vessel put into the bay yesterday, and brought up
about three miles from the wharf. The police visited her this
morning, and report that she is the bark Francesca T., of
Finanono, from Newcastle, and bound to Batavia with coals.
The captain had heard nothing of the outbreak of small-pox,
and will probably resume his voyage without holding any
communication with the shore.
The Launceston Examiner Friday October 21, 1887
Current Topics
.An impudent robbery
was
committed
on
Wednesday in the house of Mrs. Watson, widow of the
first victim of the small-pox epidemic.
The man
Macnamara, employed by the Local Board of Health
cleansing the infected houses, was at work at
Watsons and had working with him a youth named
Martin Kane. It seems that Macnamara noticed some
trinkets, amongst them a watch chain made of silver
three-penny pieces; and worn by the deceased man
Watson, lying about the house, and took the
precaution to gather them up and place them in a
box. Kane took advantage of the opportunity his
presence in the house afforded him, and appropriated
the article in question. He was arrested and was
remanded at the police court yesterday for a week.
The Launceston Police Court business was transacted
yesterday at the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Mr
H.T.A. Murray, P.M., presiding. Martin Kane, a youth,
was charged with stealing on Wednesday, at
Launceston, a link chain of threepenny pieces, the
property of one Mary Ann Watson, and was remanded
for a week.
126

SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
Matters in connection with the small-pox outbreak continue
satisfactory.
The official bulletin of yesterday morning
intimated that Wm. Bishop, jun., and Susannah Watson were
doing well. Alfred Bennett was still bad, and was suffering
from bronchitis. Leslie Marshall doing as well as could be
expected. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported a continued
improvement in each of the four patients, who may now be
considered out of danger.
Dr. Pardey begs to acknowledge with thanks the following
presents on behalf of the inmates:-A case of wine from
Messrs. D. Croz, Smith, and Co., parcel of books, Mrs. E.
Fulton, Forth; jar of marmalade from a friend; lettuces from
Mr. H. Bennett, Claremont.
We learn that the inoculation of the second calf which
promised well a few days ago is not satisfactory, the
inoculated disease having aborted.
The release of the first patients and suspects is still in
abeyance pending instructions from the Chief Secretary.
The public vaccinators, Drs. Thompson and Cotterell, were
busily engaged vaccinating yesterday, and the former
operated on over 40 applicants at the hospital.
Some missing links having been supplied, the case of the
young man mentioned in our last issue as having been under
observation at the hospital prior to the development of
typhoid fever, is a simple one. It appears he was a seaman
on board the ketch Pauline, and left her at George Town
suffering from a bad cold. He saw Dr. Morris, who advised
him to go to Launceston for treatment, his lungs being
affected, and on Monday last the man came to town as an
ordinary passenger by the Indignant. He obtained an order
for admission to the hospital, but before it was presented
must have got rapidly worse, or was shamming, since the
Surgeon Superintendent could only extract an incoherent
account as to where he came from, or what was the matter
with him.
The man was then isolated under medical
127

supervision, not because he had the faintest symptoms of


small-pox, but because his account of himself was
unsatisfactory, and it was not at first clear what his malady
really was.
CHECK THE NEWSPAPER AT LIBRARY TO SEE IF THIS IS
THE END OF THE ARTICLE
The Launceston Examiner Saturday October 22, 1887
The four patients in hand at the quarantine station Wm.
Bishop, junr., Susannah Watson, Leslie Marshall, and Alfred
Bennett, were reported yesterday as doing well. Edward
Hodges, who was acting as a volunteer male nurse, and had
been at the station a fortnight, has developed small-pox.
Francis Rowe, a suspect, is suffering from consumption.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, with thanks, on behalf of the
inmates, a box of cakes from Mrs. Canon Adams, Hagley. A
cask of ale from Messrs. J. Boag and Son.
Yesterday morning we received a telegram from our George
Town correspondent that Lanoma was flying sickness flag
this morning, nature of disease unknown. Various rumours
as to the cause of the summons for medical assistance were
current in the town during the day, and as no one knew
anything about the matter all were equally positive and
unreliable. In response to a query sent to George Town last
evening, Mr. Warren, the local manager of the Submarine
Cable Company, courteously informed us that the police
stated there was a man sick on board the Lanoma, suffering
from diarrhoea and sore throat, which the captain thinks may
develop into bronchitis or diphtheria. Bryants Bay, where
the Lanoma is lying, is about 32 miles from Launceston, but
the matter is outside the jurisdiction of the Local Board of
Health, and the application of the Lanoma for medical aid
had to be reported from the police authorities at George Town
to the Chief Secretary at the other end of the island, and the
Chief Secretary had to make arrangements for a medical
man to go down from Launceston to the Lanoma at Bryants
Bay. Arrangements were completed last evening for the tug
to leave Launceston at 6.30 a.m. to-day with Dr. Pike, who
128

will thus reach the Lanoma in about 24 hours after medical


assistance was applied for by the captain. As the case is not
one of life and death the doctor will probably be in ample
time.
It was announced in the Legislative Assembly last evening
(as will be seen from our Parliamentary report) that the
Victorian authorities have decided to relax the quarantine
restrictions affecting Tasmania on and after Friday next,
provided that no fresh cases occur. Certificates, however,
will be required to be furnished by the Port Health Officer at
Launceston that passengers have not been under
surveillance as suspects.
From our Melbourne correspondent we learn that Mr.
Alexander Perrie, the Mangana passenger who was sent to
the sanatorium at Cutpawpaw, for breaking the quarantine,
was released yesterday.
By Electric Telegraph

Hobart, Oct 21

The Central Board of Health received a cable to-day from the


Sydney Board suggesting that all passengers from Tasmania
to Sydney be vaccinated before leaving Tasmania.
The health authorities at Melbourne will pass the Launceston
steamers inwards on Friday, 28 th instant, the passengers
being subject to medical inspection, if no fresh case of smallpox occurs in Launceston between this and the 28 th.
Therefore the s.s. Mangana will take passengers when
leaving on Thursday, the 27th instant, arriving on Friday, and
leaving again the same day with mails to catch the express
on Saturday. Should no fresh outbreak occur it is intended
that the Mangana will leave Launceston on Monday, 31 st
instant, with passengers and cargo, and the s.s. Flinders
leave Melbourne the same day and take up their usual
running on Mondays and Thursdays.
The Launceston Examiner
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Monday October 24, 1887

129

The official bulletin yesterday morning from the quarantine


station stated as follows:- Susannah Watson, Wm. Bishop,
jun., Alfred Bennett, and Leslie Marshall, doing well. Edwin
Hodges, very bad night.
Francis Rowe, a little better;
consumption rather worse.
Elizabeth Agnes Marshall,
sickening for small-pox. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported
Edwin Hodges, delirious; very bad. Elizabeth A. Marshall,
vaccinated as a child, three marks on arm, has developed
primary eruption of small-pox.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, with thanks, the receipt of the
following presents for the inmates:-Parcel of papers, from Mr.
A.W. Birchall; box of presents for the children, from a Friend;
132lb of butter and 29 dozen eggs, from Mr. Charles Kent; jar
of jam and bacon, from Mr. H.T. Russell.
The following inmates will be released from the quarantine
station to-day:Joseph
Blanchflower,
Annie
Blanchflower,
George
Blanchflower, Adye Blanchflower, Mrs. Bishop, Maud Bishop,
Susan M. White, Harriet Pearson, George Holkam, Fred Miller,
Wm. Barrett, Frank Johnston, Christian Jansen.
We regret that after a cessation of nearly a fortnight a fresh
outbreak was notified yesterday. Miss Kate Barkway, second
daughter of the Rev. A. Barkway, has been under medical
treatment for the past few days. The case was transferred
from the medical attendant to Dr. Pike on Friday, and has
since been declared small-pox of a mild type. The patient,
who is not vaccinated, is isolated in her home, the residence
being put under police surveillance yesterday. Since Miss
Barkways case was deemed suspicious, the whole household
with the exception of the patient, at the urgent request of
medical advisers, have been vaccinated.
Unfortunately, Mrs. Marshall, the mother of the patient Leslie
Marshall, has contracted the disease whilst at the station and
yesterday developed primary eruption of small-pox.
Seven households, representing 45 inmates, isolated on
October 8, because of possible contagion with Storrers case,
were released at midnight yesterday.
130

Dr. Pike proceeded to the bark Lanoma at the quarantine


station, Bryants Bay, on Saturday, intimation having been
received that sickness was on board. The captain thought an
apprentice was suffering from diphtheria, but Dr. Pike found
the case less serious, the youth having an attack of
diarrhoea.
We are requested to state that the public vaccinators, Drs.
Thompson and Cotterell, have now an ample supply of calf
lymph.
Our Hobart correspondent telegraphed yesterday: Intelligence of fresh case of small-pox at Launceston learnt
here privately with great regret and disappointment.
The Launceston Examiner Tuesday 25 October 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday
morning stated as follows:-Wm. Bishop, junr., Leslie Marshall,
Alfred Bennett, and Susannah Watson doing well; Elizabeth A.
Marshall, primary small-pox. In the evening Dr. Pardey
reported:-Susannah Watson, William Bishop, junr., and Leslie
Marshall, all doing well; Alfred Bennett, not quite so well;
Edwin Hodges, eruption becoming hoemorrhagic, very bad;
Elizabeth A. Marshall, doing as well as can be expected; Mrs.
Rowe, still very bad with consumption. State of station
Small-pox patients, 6; convalescent, 9; suspects, 35.
The patients in town Alfred Mills is progressing favourably,
and Miss Kate Barkway is going on satisfactorily.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks the receipt of a cheque
for 1, from Mr. John Edwards, of Circular Head, to be devoted
to any necessity.
The bark Lanoma quarantined at Bryant Bay (because of
Mulligans case) on October 4, was released and brought up
to the wharf yesterday afternoon by the tug.
The first batch of suspects taken to the quarantine station on
27th September, thirteen in number, and whose names were
131

mentioned in our last issue, were liberated by authority of


the Government on the recommendation of Dr. Pardey about
noon yesterday. Prior to release each one had to take a
disinfectant bath, and throw out of the tents used every
article of clothing worn, putting on new suits obtained from
town on the previous Saturday. Every article taken out was
burnt, and also all the clothing, etc., used by the suspects in
their temporary residences. An omnibus had been sent for to
convey the party to town, but they were somewhat surprised
and rather disgusted to find after all they had gone through
that they were expected to pay sixpence a head for the
journey. It was not the amount that raised a sore feeling, and
it is a pity that for the sake of a few shillings any cause for
irritation should have been afforded.
(By Electric Telegraph.)

Hobart, Oct 24

The Chief Secretary received to-day a telegram from the New


Zealand Government stating that a proclamation would be
issued to-day admitting vessels from Hobart on the same
terms as they were admitted by Victoria.
The Chief Secretary also received the following cablegram
from the Premier of Victoria:-In view of the fresh case of
small-pox which broke out yesterday in Launceston any
passengers coming in through Launceston must certainly be
quarantined if they reach Victoria within fifteen days
thereafter.
The Launceston Examiner, Tuesday, October 25, 1887
QUARANTINE EXPERIENCES
A representative from this office had an interview with some
of the first batch of suspects released yesterday, and the
following is the substance of the conversations:No, I dont look much worse for my four weeks isolation; I
was never better; the treatment at the station has been
splendid, and I have gained a stone in weight; it was
rumoured, we heard, that some of our number had
attempted to break quarantine, which is utterly false. Except
132

for regaining our liberty we were loth to leave, and


throughout our stay the greatest good humour prevailed.
Things were pretty rough for the first few days, but there was
a good feeling amongst all hands, and a desire to make the
best of a bad job. How did we fare? Had we plenty to eat? I
should say so. After we got things straightened up we were
very comfortable so far as living went. There was no stint of
anything. In this matter we were all treated splendidly, we
received every possible attention, and everything was done
that could be to make us comfortable. At first the food was
badly cooked, the cook was a man from the Depot, and he
was not up to the duty, he served up one day two and a half
pounds of meat for nine healthy persons; afterwards Mr.
George Bishop, who is a splendid cook, was requested by Dr.
Pardey to take the post, and since then there has been no
complaint. Was it cold out there? Well, we had some pretty
rough weather at times, and its a wonder we didnt all get
colds. A good many did. In the houses (made out of the old
booths) we had a good boarded floor, and asphalt under that,
with an asphalt path outside, but still the wind would find its
way in, and as you could see daylight through the roof in fine
weather, you may imagine the water trickled through in wet
weather. But some of those in the tents were flooded out in
some heavy rain storms. They had only straw on the floor,
with perhaps a few palings under it, but afterwards boards
were got and proper floors made. How did we spend our
time? We rose bout seven oclock. One of our number was a
restless old gentleman and we had no peace after he
religiously awoke every morning about six. He would open
the windows and let in the draught and force us to turn out.
A tent was reserved with bath convenience, with warm water
if we desired. We had to take our meals in the sleeping
apartments in relays. Breakfast was at eight, dinner at halfpast twelve, tea at half-past 5, we were expected to turn in
by eight and to retire from 9 oclock to half-past. We had,
through the kindness of the various friends, the newspapers,
plenty of books, and games of skittles and cricket. Did the
doctor have any trouble to keep order? No; we were a very
orderly lot. Once or twice he had to interfere, but he was
obeyed without any trouble. He took our football and burnt it
because one of the men broke the rules by going into the
hospital reserve after it. The accommodation was very
limited until about a week ago, when more ground was taken
133

in, which was badly needed. Before that if we played cricket,


the ball was always getting out of bounds, and some
constables would not throw it up for us, though most of them
did. Perhaps the most enjoyable time of the day was in the
evening after tea, when we sat down to a quiet game of
cards. Were the doctor and nurses attentive? Well, no one
can say too much about their kindness and desire to make
everyone comfortable. The doctor was kind to all, and
worked hard for our welfare, and Sister Lockhart too; you
must express our appreciation of her kindness, and the way
she worked from first thing in the morning till late at night.
Mind you, nurse Johnson worked as hard, though she was laid
up for a time with a bad cold, but she was on night work, and
we didnt see so much of her. And the public too, you must
thank them for us, and say how we appreciated the presents
that kept pouring in every day.
The question as to whether the arrangements for the
quarantine station were suitable met with a negative reply
from all: One person said:-I think they could not well have
been worse. They are just the reverse of the provisions made
when I was quarantined in Cape Town. There we had plenty
of room, but were badly provisioned; here we have had
abundance of food, and of the best quality, but the
arrangements of planning the hospitals and wards and tents
were badly regulated. It would have been far better to have
had two separate quarantine establishments, one for
patients and one for suspects. If this could not be done then
in the same ground, the hospital should have been at one
extremity of the grounds and the suspects at the other. Why
could not the hospitals have been near the gate, then the
booths might have been used for convalescents, and the
suspects placed in such tents as those which have recently
been put up near the gate? As households arrived they
should have been placed in separate quarters, and gradually
drafted off. As it is there was too much indiscriminate
contact.
Another informant replied Well, I cant compliment
whoever laid out the station, for the ground was only about
100 yards long by 85 yards wide at one end and 50 yards at
the other, and when more tents came to be erected it didnt
leave us much room for a recreation ground. The hospitals
134

were too near the suspects residences, and on the second


day we shifted the kitchen from close proximity to a hospital
to the other end of the line.
One of those interviewed, who is no stranger to either smallpox or quarantine, gave the following decided opinions:What is my conviction respecting the disease? Undoubtedly
it is small-pox; on that I would state my existence. I have
had experience of small-pox at Cape Town, in South Africa,
where I have seen hundreds of cases, and the symptoms
were identically the same headache, shiverings, pains in
the back, following by the same class of eruption, after the
same period of incubation. You would not find anyone at the
station who would doubt this fact. Mrs. Blanchflower, one of
the original cases, would confirm this opinion, for she
believes the attack she had was of the worst form. You ask
what are my impressions with respect to vaccination? I think
the lesson to be learnt from a knowledge of all the cases is
that where vaccination has been successful the attack has
been mild. It would be impossible to point to clearer proof of
this than the contrast afforded by the cases of the boys
Spiers, and Bishop, who were of a similar age; Spiers was a
weakly, sickly child, with hardly natural strength to walk. He
was attacked; he had four large marks showing successful
vaccination, and the attack was thrown off and he has but a
mark here and there. Bishop was a strong, robust, healthy
fellow, but not vaccinated; he has had a narrow escape and
will no doubt be severely marked.
The Launceston Examiner
1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Wednesday 26 October

The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday


morning stated as follows:- William bishop, jun., Susannah
Watson, Leslie Marshall, and Alfred Bennett, all doing well.
Edwin Hodges, still very bad, eruption hoemorrhagic.
Elizabeth A. Marshall, slightly worse. Francis Rowe, suffering
from consumption, still very bad.
In the evening Dr. Pardey reported:- Wm. Bishop, jun.,
convalescent. Alfred Bennett, Leslie Marshall, and Susannah
135

Watson, doing well. Edwin Hodges still very bad. Elizabeth


Marshall, much worse, Margaret Hunter, charwoman,
developed signs of small-pox, will cause a detention of 15
days. Mrs. Rowe, still bad.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks the receipt of a parcel
of flowers from a friend.
We are requested by several of those released from the
quarantine at the station on Monday to supplement the
remarks made with respect to Quarantine Experiences.
They say that themselves and the inmates generally are
under deep obligations to Mrs. Pearson, and the Misses
Bishop and Ransley, for the kind and cheerful manner in
which they performed laborious domestic duties of preparing
the tables, and washing clothes, etc.
A householder living in Mulgrave-street was apprehensive
early yesterday morning that this child was ailing with an
infectious disease showing signs of eruption. At two oclock
he came into town and roused Dr. Pike, to whom he described
the symptoms, and then received instructions what to do. A
little later, Dr. Thompson, surgeon-superintendent of the
hospital, was roused and then the journey was undertaken
for Dr. Pike. Later in the morning the child was seen by Dr.
Pike, who pronounced the disease chicken-pox.
We understand that Mr. W. B. Tregurthas residence was
isolated yesterday evening through apprehension of possible
infection received in connection with Miss Barkway.
Messrs. Bennell Brothers establishment will be released from
isolation today.
The boy on whose account the sick flag was flying on the
bark Lanoma on Saturday morning whilst in quarantine in
Bryants Bay, and which necessitated Dr. Pikes journey
thence, was taken to the Launceston Hospital yesterday,
suffering from low fever.
(By Electric Telegraph) Hobart, Oct. 25

136

The Chief Secretary to-day received a telegram from the


Queensland Government to the effect that after the
assurances given as to the small-pox epidemic and the
precautions taken, the Queensland authorities are willing to
limit the quarantine to vessels arriving from Launceston.
The Launceston Examiner
1887
SMALL-POX OUTBREAK

Thursday 27th October,

The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday


morning stated as follows: - Alfred Bennett, Leslie Marshall,
and Susannah Watson, all doing well. William Bishop, jun.,
convalescent. Elizabeth A. Marshall, unconscious all night.
Edwin Hodges died at 1.30 this morning. Margaret Hunter,
suspicious rash on wrist, not quite certain small-pox. Alfred
Mills, convalescent. Servant at Mills developed primary
small-pox. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported Susannah
Watson, Alfred Bennett, and Leslie Marshall still doing well.
Elizabeth A. Marshall improved much during day. Margaret
Hunter very mild, doing well. Harriet Ward, aged 21, primary
small-pox, doing well.
The ninth fatal case occurred on the death of Edwin Hodges
which took place at the station as stated early yesterday
morning. He had been there since the 9 th inst. And had been
acting as a male nurse. On the 21 st he developed the
disease, and very quickly passed into the hoemorrhagic
stage, and succumbed after five days illness.
The
internment took place at the quarantine cemetery yesterday
afternoon, the service being performed by the Rev. H.
Greenwood, Superintendent Minister of the Patterson-street
Wesleyan circuit. It appears that the deceased refused to be
vaccinated until last Sunday, when he was too bad for the
vaccination to have a deterrent effect.
Harriet Ward, the last patient, was a domestic servant at the
Millss residence. It seems that a fortnight ago, heedless of
distinct instructions, she waited on the patient Alfred Mills.
She was vaccinated last Friday week, and the operation took
well. As Mrs. Mills is the only person who could render aid,
and as she is in attendance of her son, it was decided the
137

best course would be to send the patient Ward to the station,


and this was done yesterday.
George Bennett, father of the boy Alfred Bennett, who is a
patient at the station, was temporarily master of the ketch
Strathmore, and was with the vessel when quarantined.
Since then he has left the vessel, and a few nights ago
entered his home, which has been closed since the outbreak
which occurred in it. He yesterday walked out to the station,
and was received as a suspect.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks the receipt of a box of
medicated soap from Messrs. R. Miller and Sons.
We are requested to add Mrs. Bennetts name to the list of
those who have done kind and useful service at the station.
The announcement made at the station on Tuesday by Dr.
Pardey that the outbreak in Margaret Hunters case would
cause a further detention of the inmates for 15 days, she
having been in constant contact with them, caused some
disturbance.
Two of the male suspects manifested
insubordination and defiance, and the attitude assumed
induced the constables to provide for extreme emergencies.
It seems that one of the men had received a letter from his
wife by the English mail, who requested an immediate
remittance, and the man vowed he would have his liberty to
attend to his business in defiance of the authorities. The
excitement, however, gradually toned down, and quietness
eventually prevailed.
The isolated residences of Messrs. Foot, Foley, and Houston
were released from surveillance yesterday.
A serious
difficulty has arisen with respect to the inspector of isolated
houses. As Dr. Pike has been in attendance on small-pox
patients, M. Marshall, sen., of Laura-street, yesterday refused
to allow Dr. Pike to enter the house with the view of declaring
it free from infection. The refusal will probably lead to some
arrangement being made to relieve Dr. Pike from his duty and
provide for the presence of a professional representative at
the meeting of the Local Board of Health.

138

The Launceston Examiner


SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Friday 28th October 1887

The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday


morning stated as follows:-Leslie Marshall, Susannah Watson,
and Alfred Bennett, still doing well. Elizabeth A. Marshall, fair
night, and much better. Margaret Hunter not declared smallpox, doing as well as can be expected. Harriet Ward, primary
eruption of small-pox, doing well. In the evening Dr. Pardey
reported that Leslie Marshall, Susannah Watson, and Alfred
Bennett were doing well. Elizabeth A. Marshall, still very bad,
but holding her own. Harriet Ward doing as well as can be
expected. Margaret Hunter, rash disappeared, temperature
natural, and no signs of small-pox.
In consequence of the reassuring report respecting Margaret
Hunter, twenty-three suspects will be released to-day,
including the Hines family (5), Watson (6), Larter (4), Mrs.
Metcalf, Mrs. Storrer, Mrs. Rowe, Mrs. Bennett, Mary Hannah
Walsh, Thos. G. Bennett, William Buckler, and William Yule.
The following male patients, Messrs. H.R. Murray, Thomas
Hawkins, and George Spiers, will be released on Tuesday
next.
Alfred Mills is now considered convalescent, but we regret to
state that Miss Barkway was not quite so well last night.
Dr Pardey acknowledges with thanks the receipt of papers
from a friend, a case of sundries from Mr. H. Bloch, Deloraine,
a cheque for 1 from Mr. E. M. Moore for the benefit of the
patients, and a box of medicated soap from Mr. Alex. Evans,
received October 1 and omitted to be previously
acknowledged.
To-day and on Tuesday next Dr. Gutteridge will vaccinate
gratuitously at the Pharmacy, Brisbane-street, in the morning
from 9 to 10 oclock, and in the evening from 7 till 8 oclock.
The Launceston Examiner
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Saturday 29 Oct 1887

139

The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday


morning reported as follows: - Alf. Bennett, Leslie Marshall,
and Susannah Watson keeping well; Elizabeth A. Marshall
passed good night, slightly better; Harriet Ward, delirious all
night, not doing so well; Frances Rowe, consumption, very
bad; Margaret Hunter, eruption disappeared, not small-pox;
John Wilkinson, suspect, had head-ache yesterday, kept
isolated. Rest doing well. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported
Leslie Marshall convalescent; Susannah Watson and Alfred
Bennett doing well; Harriet Ward, no change since previous
report; Elizabeth A. Marshall, as well as can be expected;
John Wilkinson, still bad, some doubtful eruptions on
forehead.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges with thanks the receipt of a present
of vegetables from an unknown friend.
The order for the release of the inmates mentioned yesterday
did not reach Dr. Pardey until the afternoon, and at their own
request their departure was delayed until this morning. The
name of Sarah Ransley is to be added to those leaving the
station to-day.
Miss Barkway had improved since the previous day.
Dr. Thompson had consented to certify to the freedom from
infection of the isolated houses.
Another phase of the isolation question occurred yesterday.
During their absence at the station the houses of the
suspects Hines (Radfords Row) and S. Watson (Frederickstreet) have been condemned as unfit for habitation.
Dr. Gutteridge will vaccinate gratuitously at the Pharmacy,
Brisbane-street, on Tuesday morning, 9 to 10 oclock;
evening, 7 to 8.
The Launceston Examiner
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

Monday 31 Oct 1887

The official bulletin from the quarantine yesterday morning


reported as follows:- Alfred Bennett and Susannah Watson
140

doing well. Harriet Ward, bad night; no better. Elizabeth A.


Marshall, progressing favourably.
John Wilkinson has
developed primary eruption of small-pox; doing well. The
town patient, Miss Kate Barkway, was stated to be doing well.
In the evening Dr. Pardey reported:- Harriet Ward much
worse; suffering also from bronchitis.
All others doing
favourably.
State of station:-Small-pox cases 5;
convalescents, 11; suspects, 15; Total 31.
It will be seen that another case of small-pox has developed
at the station. John Wilkinson was removed on the 12 th inst.
As a suspect with his wife (a patient who died on the 14 th); he
was reported on Friday last as suffering from headache and
other premonitory symptoms of the pronounced disease.
Owing to the dwellings of the released suspects, Hines and S.
Watson, sen., being condemned as unfit for habitation, some
members of these families have stayed at the station until
arrangements are made.
On Saturday the residence of Thomas Ryan, in a right-of-way
in Frederick-street, close to the Primitive Methodist Church,
was isolated. The house is occupied by Ryan, his wife, and
children, and three other relatives. It appears that Ryan, who
was not in good health was employed in disinfecting houses
and burning supposed infected articles. The man is suffering
from inflammation of the lungs, not small-pox, and he is in a
very low condition. The isolation has been ordered contrary,
we believe, to the opinions of the medical men, as Ryan
needs every possible aid that skill and nursing can give.
We are desired to state the captain, officers, seamen, and
apprentices of the bark Lanoma, 17 in number, desire to
express their sincere thanks to the numerous friends in
Launceston for their great kindness in supplying them so
abundantly with every delicacy that could be procured; also
for books and papers during the rigid quarantine they have
lately been subject to in Bryants Bay.

141

The Launceston Examiner Tuesday 1 Nov 1887


LOCAL BOARD OF HEALTH SANITARY OFFICERS REPORT
Death return The Deputy Registrar reported the following
return of deaths registered in the district of Launceston
during the week ending October 29 Males 84 years,
senility; 71 years, heart disease; 52 years, Brights disease;
43 years, small-pox. Females 1 week, weakness; 17 days,
convulsions; 47 years, paralysis; 22 years, typhoid fever.
The Sanitary Officer reported on October 31:- I have the
honour to state for the information of the Local Board that
since the date of my last report the undermentioned
premises have been isolated owing to circumstances which
will be found in the following detail: (1)The Rev. A. Barkways
house in Frankland-street, on account of his daughter having
contracted the disease. This case was reported as suspicious
the 21st inst. By Dr. Hallowes, was under observation until the
23rd by Dr. Pike, when it was declared small-pox. The family
had free intercourse with the sister, who acted as nurse of
the patient until the 23rd, a period which in connection with
the antecedents of the case it is to be hoped will lead to no
further developments. In connection with this case I have to
inform you that the Rev. Barkways washing was done at the
Industrial School, and consequently this institution should
have been isolated, not as a school, but as a laundry. In the
handful of small-pox that has occurred during the present
outbreak it has been shown that washing from an infected
house is capable of disseminating the disease. I allude to
Pearsons and Blanchflowers cases. (2) Mr. Tregurthas
house in Frankland-street was isolated in consequence of
members of this household having been in regular
intercourse with the Rev. Barkways family from the date of
attack until the date of the isolation of the latter. Mr.
Tregurtha and family recognised the necessity of the step;
they, in fact, are similarly situated to the White family, who
were isolated in consequence of Mrs White having visited the
infected house of Watson.
(3) Thos. (Lawrence) Ryan,
employed as a disinfector, was isolated in consequence of
illness; it appears he had had fever, and was not able to go
on with his work. I advised him to go to quarantine, but he
did not acquiesce in this, and returned home. I may state
142

that the isolation has only been with a precautionary object,


and everything has been done to ensure proper and
sufficient nourishment, and the medical attendant has free
access to the house by arrangement. Both Ryan and his wife
expressed themselves grateful on Saturday evening, and
there is no doubt the arrangement is calculated for their
welfare, as well as being a necessary step for the public
safety.
Isolated Houses
Alderman Sadler thought there should be some person fitted
to say what house should be isolated; he regretted the
conflict of opinion between Health and the Sanitary Officers,
and it was disagreeable to the public.
The Mayor stated the isolations were ordered on his
authority; with respect to Mr. Tregurthas case it was done
with the concurrence of the family; if Mills had been isolated
at the station, the case of the woman Ward might not have
occurred.
Alderman Button drew attention to the case of the man Ryan
who according to a representation which he believed Dr.
Thompson had made to the board, was utterly unfit to be
employed as a disinfector.
The Mayor said it was the first he had heard of the matter.
The Town Clerk said Dr. Thompson did say something about
it.
Alderman Button, continuing, said many mistakes would
have been avoided had there been proper advisers and
regulations.
The Mayor said their experience would be a means of good,
and he hoped proper instructions would be drawn out for any
future emergency.
Alderman Barrett said the position showed they needed an
independent medical man above local influence.

143

Alderman Scott thought that had street isolation been carried


out as recommended at first the whole thing would have
been stamped out before now.
Dr Pikes Resignation
The following correspondence was read: - Dr. Pike to the
Mayor. October 25 Unless my suggestion in regard to nonisolation in connection with Miss Barkways case are adopted
I feel compelled to resign my position as Health Officer to
the Local Board of Health. The Sanitary Officer to the Mayor
(explaining his reasons for recommending the isolation of Mr.
Tregurthas house) Mrs. Tregurtha had intercourse with
Miss Barkway on Wednesday, the 19th inst. Mr. Tregurtha was
in contact with Miss Barkway on Saturday, the 22 nd inst. Mr.
Bignold, a lodger at Tregurthas was in Mr. Barkways house
on Thursday, the 20th. No precautions have been taken, as
the case was said not to be small-pox.
Mr. Tregurtha also states that Miss Barkway was at his house
baking cakes on Thursday, the 20th. Miss Barkway associated
with her own family and with strangers on Saturday, the 22 nd
inst. And Mr. Barkway actually performed a funeral service in
the same afternoon. Dr. Pike to the Mayor In my report
about Miss Barkways case on Monday, I stated that as no
one but the inmates of the house had seen Miss Kate
Barkway since Tuesday, October 18, there was no need for
any isolation in connection with the case, and yet Mr.
Tregurthas home has been isolated on account of supposed
contact with Miss Barkway. Dr. Pike to the secretary of the
Local Board I would point out (with respect to the Sanitary
Officers explanation) that there are two Miss Barkways and
the one referred to in Sanitary Officers memo, is not the one
who is ill. Miss Kate Barkway, the patient, has not been out
of her room since Tuesday, October 18th, and no one but the
inmates of the house have been seen or been in contact with
her since that date. As in my opinion there was no contagion
in the case till Friday when the rash appeared and the family
have been practically isolated since then, it is quite needless
to isolate anybody because of it. Even should any person
have contracted the disease from Miss Kate Barkway they
themselves will not be a source of contagion till the disease
has developed on them.
144

Telegram from the Central Board of Health to the Mayor,


October 31 We have taken medical advice on the subject
of Tregurthas isolation as stated in your telegram, and the
opinion coincides that of Dr. Pike, that infection is unknown
before initiatory fever begins. You had better follow Dr. Pikes
instructions. I presume he suggests isolation of Ryans
house. It was decided the foregoing correspondence be laid
before the Health Committee.
Alderman Button asked what was their position with respect
to the Health Officer.
He thought the board and the
community at large were under obligation to Drs. Pike and
Pardey, and that their appreciation should be placed on
record.
It was decided to leave the appointment of duly qualified
medical officers in the hands of the Mayor in the event of Dr.
Pike adhering to his resignation.
Miscellaneous
In answer to Alderman Scott, the Mayor said nothing definite
had been done with respect to a permanent quarantine
ground. Alderman Sadler asked if it was the intention to take
any steps to isolate typhoid fever cases. Alderman Button
asked what was the use of this while they were sanctioning
water-closets, to which Alderman Barrett replied that in
Hobart they would say the fever was due to the want of the
water-closet system.
The Mayor said that there was a quantity of skins on Bishops
premises which had been considered subject to infection.
The Sanitary Officer wished them to be burnt; Dr. Pike
objected, and suggested they should be dipped in solution
and then tanned; they had been dipped, but not tanned, and
it was stated that they were virtually destroyed, and were
now rotting. A valuer had stated their worth to be 61 18s
10d, and it was a question of what to do with them. On the
motion of Alderman Barrett, seconded by Alderman Dean,
they were ordered to be burnt.

145

The Mayor said two infected houses had been condemned by


Dr. Pike. Hiness was of brick, and might be put right, but
Watsons should be burnt. The matter was left in abeyance.
The Mayor said there was a difficulty with respect to the
destruction of bedding at Millss residence. Dr. Pike had
recommended that it be removed and destroyed; the
Sanitary Officer wished it to be burnt and buried, but there
was a difficulty in getting men to take the stuff away.
Alderman Dean asked the Mayor if he ordered the last
unfortunate case, that of Harriet Ward, to be sent to the
station to which the Mayor replied in the negative; it was by
Dr. Pikes instructions, as there was no one in the house to
nurse her. Alderman Sutton regretted her mother, who lived
at Deloraine, had not been communicated with, as some
effort should have been made to secure a nurse.
The board rose at 5.40 p.m.
The Launceston Examiner Tuesday Nov 1
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK

1887

The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday


morning reported as follows:-Susannah Watson and Alfred
Bennett, doing well. Elizabeth A. Marshall still progressing
favourably. John Wilkinson not quite so well. Harriet Ward
died at 2.15 a.m. The town patient, Miss Kate Barkway, was
reported doing well. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported there
was no change of importance. State of station Patients, 4;
convalescents, 11; suspects, 12.
It will be seen that the tenth fatal case occurred yesterday
morning, in the death of Harriet Ward, who was sent to the
station last Wednesday. She suffered also from a bad attack
of bronchitis and gradually succumbed, and was interred
yesterday by Archdeacon Hales. The deceased was 21 years
of age, and came from Deloraine. She had been three years
in the service of Mrs. Mills, but was not robust.
We learn that three of the Hiness children were discharged
yesterday from the station, and that three convalescents H.
146

L. Murray, T. Hawkins, and G. Spiers, with five suspects F.


Thorpe, John, Meehan, Catherine Meehan, John Hunter, and
Margaret OConnor will be discharged to-day.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, with thanks, the receipt of reading
matter and jam from Messrs. E.A. Woodberry and the hon.
F.W. Grubb.
The Launceston Examiner Thurs November 3 1887
SMALLPOX OUTBREAK
The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday
morning reported:- Alfred Bennett, Elizabeth A. Marshall,
both doing well. John Wilkinson, very bad night, still very
bad. In the evening Dr. Pardey reported that John Wilkinson
was dangerously ill, and all the rest were doing well.
John Hunter, a suspect, will be discharged from the station
to-day.
The barricade at Ryans house was removed yesterday.
Dr. Pardey acknowledges, with thanks, on behalf of the
inmates of the station, the receipt of some vegetables and a
case of preserves from Mrs. Wm. Hart and papers from Mr. A.
Beck.
Dr. Pardey was engaged yesterday in superintending the
packing up of some tents at the station, evidently in the hope
that his charge would continue to decrease, but we regret
having to report the appearance of the disease in the
country.
Yesterday afternoon Dr. E. Elliot, of Evandale,
personally reported to Dr. Pike, that he had a suspicious case
in hand, a child whom he had been treating for measles. Dr.
Pike immediately drove out and found the child suffering
from a severe form of small-pox. She is too ill to be conveyed
to town, and with her mother will stay in their home: the
father, Wm. Lewis and four children will be brought to the
station in the ambulance conveyance to-day. Dr. Pike has
sent out to Evandale all the lymph he could procure, and
yesterday evening requested the chief Secretary to send a
nurse to the infected house. Our Evandale correspondent
telegraphed last night:-Dr. Pike has just inspected the house
of W. Lewis, a labourer, residing at Evandale with his family,
147

numbering about ten. The patient is a girl about seven years


of age, and is pronounced to be suffering from small-pox. Dr.
Pike has ordered the removal of the family as suspects, with
the exception of the mother and the girl, who will remain in
the house, which is isolated.
Considerable excitement
prevails. Three sons of the household are adults and have
been away from home some time engaged at barking, so
that the isolation will not include them. We understand that
none of the household are vaccinated.
It will be seen in another column that his Worship the Mayor,
in compliance with a requisition of a number of influential
burgesses, has fixed next Monday evening for a public
meeting at the Town Hall for the purpose of urging upon the
Government the imperative necessity of a permanent
quarantine station.
The Hobart Church News for the current month is responsible
for the following:- On Tuesday, September 20, the Rev. Mr.
Young met Archdeacon Hales and said, I have just come
from a house whose inmates have small-pox. The
Archdeacon at once brought him to the sanitary inspector
and reported it. That officer was unable to do anything
because he had a report of a different disease. Nothing was
then done till Sunday, and the disease had time to spread.
(By Electric Telegraph) Hobart, Nov 2
Through the courtesy of the Chief Secretary the following
correspondence relative to the appearance of small-pox at
Evandale has been made available to the press:From Dr. Pike to the Chief Secretary, 6.35 p.m.:-I drove to
Evandale to-day and saw a case of confluent small-pox in an
unvaccinated family. I am afraid it has got a start, as the
rash has been out since Sunday. The family deny being out
of Evandale since the childrens jubilee day. Mr. Collins will
telegraph you particulars. Can you send them a nurse, and
lymph to Dr. Elliott? I suppose there is no doctor available?
From Dr. Pike to the Chief Secretary 9.5(0) p.m:- the child is
too ill to be moved to Mowbray. The house can be isolated if
suspects are moved from it and a nurse provided. Nurse
Connor would be useless, as the case is a severe one, and an
148

experienced nurse will be required. Is it absolutely necessary


that I should attend it?
From the chief Secretary to Dr. Pike, 10.17 p.m. I have wired
to Mr. Henry, of the Don, to send nurse Lefevre to Evandale
town per first train Thursday, and asked him to telegraph to
you as to her movements. Please meet her. Mr. Mault goes
to Evandale by express; meet him there Thursday. Take
lymph from Doctors Thompson or Cotterell. Mr Taylor is
ordered to have tents ready. You must attend the case.
From the Chief Secretary to Mr. H.N. Taylor. 10.17 p.m. - Have
some of the tents that were not taken to Mowbray, also their
frame work, ready to send to Mr. Mault on his telegraphing to
you from Evandale. He reaches there by Thursday express.
From Mr. W. Shaw, Riverton, to the Chief Secretary, 18.20
a.m. Nurse Lefevre leaves by first train tomorrow morning
for Evandale.
SMALLPOX
Semper eqo auditor, etc
Sir, - In the recent and present conflict of assertions and
opinions and extraordinary propositions put forward amongst
medical and sanitary authorities at Launceston, the members
of the public, in self defence, may be justified in examining
for themselves by the light of common sense the questions
involved.
It has been repeatedly insisted upon by
Launceston doctors that there can be no danger of
infection from any small-pox patient until the eruption or a
state of fever is developed. Nor is there any intention to
discredit this statement. Granted, that a patient cannot
himself become a centre of infection, acting upon other
persons, until these stated symptoms are developed; but do
these authorities mean to assert that the contagion which
has been effective in striking one victim has fulfilled its
complete destiny and become powerless to affect others
also?
Do they presume to assert that on a person
contracting the disease his clothes or immediate personal
belongings, which were probably the medium through which
the infection reached himself, are powerless to communicate
149

the same to others until their has enquired??? By


development of the before stated symptoms, the power to
become a centre of infection on his own account! Surely it
must be obvious to common sense that the infection which
had the power to strike a victim, and which probably
saturates his clothes or personal surroundings, must still
remain so powerful as even to infect others, although the
victim himself will be unable to do so until a certain stage of
his disease is developed. And yet it would seem by your
publication this morning that the ?? of certain doctors has
been accepted as sound logic that it is needless to isolate
persons who are known to have been in intimate association
with a patient, after infection, but before a development
which would make that patient an independent centre of
infection the clothes and personal surroundings being
ignored! And by the wish of the Government and the
doctors the fallacy has been acted upon by the liberation
from isolation of persons known to have been in intimate
association with the most recent case! Truly this fact will add
another illustration of an opinion more than once expressed;
that the health authorities of Launceston are following the
disease about, instead of vigorously and impartially
intercepting it. To the tolerance by the health authorities of
the undertaker who conducted the interment of the first two
victims being at large, mixing with the community, teaching
unfortunate juvenile victims in Sunday schools, and waiting
upon them at the childrens jubilee demonstration may be
ascribed at least one death and several victims. It is all very
well for those individuals whose trade may be injured, or
even ruined, or whose convenience or comfort may have
been for a time sacrificed by isolation, or others whose
churches may have been somewhat impoverished by the
temporary suspension of congregation of individuals, to
twaddle about peoples want of courage to meet the evil by
letting the matter drift and in deprecation of stringent
measures of suppression, and to censure the press for its
candid outspoken truth, but the welfare of the whole
community must outweigh all partial evil. The latter must be
submitted to for the general good. On every ground of
reason and justice, as well as expediency, the most extreme
and stringent measures the more stringent the more
speedily ended were justifiable to put an end to the evil.
Personal considerations and temporising half measures,
150

added to the apparent ignorance and uncertainty betrayed


by professors of the subject are not likely conditions for
success. Again, so far from the press being amenable to
censure for honestly disclosing the exact state of affairs, the
greatest credit and thanks are due to it for its candid nonsuppression of the worst. Had a contrary course been
adopted by the press, as desired by certain persons, the
actual evils would have been exaggerated a thousand fold,
and a universal panic would have prevailed, causing by far
more stringent measures of precaution on the part of the
neighbouring colonies. As it was, however, the public being
aware that not the least suppression of the worst was
attempted, rested in confidence on the information obtained
in the newspapers each morning. Happily the present evil is
nearly overcome, and it is to be hoped that the ignorance,
uncertainty and blunders, not to mention want of preparation
of re???? Conditions, will prove a warning for the future.
Yours, etc., Common Sense.
Sir I beg to draw your attention to the following facts which
prove conclusively that the local sanitary authorities,
although so ready to practice isolation, evidently do not
understand the first principles of the system.
Miss Barkways case was pronounced smallpox on Saturday,
October 22; on the Tuesday following, about midday, the
Sanitary Officer called at Mr. Tregurthas and obtained the
dates on which Mr and Mrs Tregurtha and I had last been in
contact with Mr. Barkways family.
We unanimously volunteered to isolate ourselves, in fact had
done so on the previous day (knowing that our neighbours
regarded us with some apprehension); on the same Tuesday
evening, at 8 oclock, without any medical certificate
(although, I understand, three are necessary), we were
barricaded from the street and placed under police
surveillance.
On enquiry we found, to our surprise, that this was the only
house isolated in connection with this case, whereas it is
well-known that several families besides ourselves had been
in contact during the week ending October 22.
151

On October 31, in consequence of an application from Dr.


Pike, the Central Board of Health (to whom, I presume, the
Local Board are subordinate) telegraphed to the latter that
We have taken medical advice on the subject of Tregurthas
isolation and the opinion coincides with that of Dr. Pike,
that infection is unknown before initiatory fever begins. You
had better follow Dr Pikes instructions. (the italics are
mine). Instead of acting on this forthwith, a whole day is
allowed to elapse before any steps are taken for our release,
and on the ? night of our isolation, the relief patrol ? at his
usual watch at 8.00 p.m.., and brings a verbal message from
the police station saying we are free; no medical inspection,
no written order is considered necessary. A more informal
and unsatisfactory mode of procedure it would be difficult to
imagine.
Now isolation, although an arbitrary step, if
resorted to at all should be surely carried out on some
systematic principles. The sole object of isolation is to
prevent the spread of a disease. Now, if there was any fear
of infection from any of us, why were we allowed from
Saturday, when the disease was declared, till Tuesday night
when we were isolated that is four clear days to go where
we would?
On the other hand, if there was no fear of infection (as is
satisfactorily shown by the medical testimony), why were we
isolated at all?
You will admit there is a wide difference between voluntary
and compulsory isolation.
If the Local Board of Health have carte blanche to isolate in
this promiscuous manner, the sooner a limit is put to their
discretionary power the better. Yours, etc., F. Bignold.
The Launceston Examiner Friday 4 November, 1887
Current Topics
At the Launceston Police Court yesterday Mr. H.T.A. Murray,
P.M., occupied the bench. Martin Kane was charged; on
remand, with having on September 19 stolen a watch guard,
consisting of silver coins, the property of Elizabeth Watson.
Superintendent Coulter, who appeared for the prosecution,
152

stated that it was a case of the worst description of larceny,


Kane having been engaged to disinfect the house of Mrs.
Watson, in consequence of her husband having died in it
from small-pox, and when there he stole the article
complained of.
He (Superintendent Coulter) therefore
thought that under the peculiar circumstances of the case he
was quite justified in asking for a further remand for a week,
as Mrs Watson was at present in quarantine. Mr. Murray said
he would grant the application for remand, but would
consider the time defendant had been in gaol if he found him
guilty of the charge. Kane was then remanded till this day
week.
Small-Pox Outbreak
The official bulletin from the quarantine station yesterday
morning stated as follows:-Alfred Bennett, convalescent.
Elizabeth A. Marshall, still doing well. John Wilkinson, had a
fair night, but still very bad. In the evening Dr. Pardey
considered Wilkinson to be worse than in the morning.
Dr. Pike proceeded to Evandale yesterday to confer with Mr.
Mault, Inspector under the Public Health Act, who arrived
from Hobart by the express train, and the Local Board of
Health. It was decided, in view of the short tenure on which
the quarantine station at Mowbray is held, not to send any
members of the Lewis family there, but to form a temporary
quarantine station at Evandale, and the use of a paddock on
the Cambock estate near the residence of the infected
family, having been secured, Mr. Mault is having the tents
sent out from Launceston erected there, and Lewis and four
of his young children will be accommodated therein. Nurse
Lefevre arrived from the Don, and, assisted by the mother,
will nurse the patient, who is doing well, in the cottage. Mr
Mault will return to Hobart tomorrow afternoon after making
all necessary arrangements, which will then be supervised by
the Evandale Local Board of Health, to whom Dr. Pike will act
as medical adviser. The members of the Lewis family were
vaccinated yesterday by Dr. Pike.
Our Evandale correspondent forwards the above information,
and states that after Mr. Mault and the local authorities had
inspected several sites the offer of the Warden, Mr. J.L. Smith,
153

of that now utilised was accepted. He states:- Various


rumours are current as to the source from which the little girl
caught the disease, but nothing authentic is yet known. Her
parents state that she has not been away from home or any
member of his family for months, viz., to town. The girl came
home from school feeling ill, and continued to get worse. Dr.
Elliott has attended her for ten days supposing she had fever,
then later on measles, and lastly small-pox, which has been
confirmed by Dr. Pike. If the case is attended to properly and
every precaution taken no doubt the malady will soon be
stamped out. The members of the Local Board of Health are
busy doing their best.
Last evening our Evandale correspondent telegraphed that a
public meeting was held in the Council Chambers that
evening to protest against the present site chosen for a
quarantine station. The Rev. J. Chambers occupied the chair,
and the meeting was addressed by Messrs. Von Steiglitz, W.
Farmer, J. Bryan, and J. Donaldson.
After considerable
discussion
the
following
resolutions
were
carried
unanimously:-That a telegram be sent to the Chief Secretary
protesting against the site chosen. It as proposed and
carried that the site on Mr. Von Steiglitzs estate be chosen,
and that a deputation consisting of Messrs. Von Steiglitz, W.
Bond, J. McCullagh, Rev. J. Chambers, and W. Farmer wait
upon the Local Board of Health and express the opinion of the
meeting. It was considered that the present site was unfit, it
being virtually in the town, and therefore dangerous to the
health of the inhabitants.
Letters to the Editor
Small-Pox Contagion
Sir, - Common Senses letter in todays paper is an apt
illustration of the adage Fools rush in where angels fear to
tread. He has mixed up infections and contagion in a most
marvellous manner, and tried to have a slap-all-round at
everybody.
I will try to put the matter in a common sense manner for
him. The disease germs of small-pox are conveyed in two
ways by means of the breath (infection), and by the effete
products thrown off from the body in the form of scabs,
154

excreta, etc. (contagion).


The breath becomes very infectious when the fever stage
begins, that is on the eighth day, but to a much more marked
extent when the scabs begin to dry, on the 11th day, and then
is the time the infectious matter can be handled and
conveyed by clothes; that is to say, it becomes a contagion.
Common Sense will see from this that at first, and probably
until the 11th day, the disease can only be caught by
infection; that is, the person who catches it must have
actually inhaled the same enclosed atmosphere as the
diseased person. He cannot convey it about with him unless
he bottles up some of the breath of the diseased person.
After that date, if exposed to the disease, he may contract it
himself, or he may hand it on to any of his friends with whom
he comes in contact.
In the present outbreak only the first batch of patients had
developed the contagious stage before they went to
Mowbray, none of the others had got beyond the infectious
stage.
Granting our rules above laid down are correct, here are a
few examples for Common Sense. Firstly, hundreds of
unvaccinated persons have been in the room with people
(who have afterwards developed small-pox) before the rash
appeared; as yet none of these have developed the disease,
nor have they handed it on to their friends, so it is apparently
not infectious or contagious before the rash appears.
In Storrers case the rash appeared on Friday night, October
8; Hodges was in the room with him on that night; a fortnight
afterwards Hodges developed the rash of the disease, so
apparently it is infectious as soon as the rash appears.
Storrer himself did not see Watson till after he was dead; so
he could not have got the infection from his breath. He got
the contagion from the effete products given off from the
skin. (Watson died on the 12th day of the disease.).
Rowe, who had already had small-pox assisted Storrer on
Saturday, September 24; he did not contract the disease
himself, but handed it on to his child and to Chick by means
155

of contagion.
Is Common Sense satisfied now, and is the sophism of
certain doctors sound logic, or is it not rather a fallacy for
any one to discourse on matters in which he is grossly
ignorant and call that discourse common sense?
Yours, etc. Esox Lucius.
Sir, - While so much is being written about the small-pox
outbreak in our midst let us not forget those who, through
this fell disease, have been deprived of their bread winners.,
but by our practical sympathy try and lighten their burdens.
With this object in view I enclose 10s, knowing, Mr. Editor,
that you will gladly receive any contributions on their behalf.

Yours etc., R.L.H.


[We are pleased at our correspondents practical sympathy,
and will gladly receive contributions for the object
mentioned. We would suggest, however, that the donors
should indicate how they would wish their bounty distributed.
Ed]
Sir, - Amongst the sad visitations of the small-pox one of
special severity has fallen upon Mrs. Larter, who was
conveyed with her husband and three children to the
quarantine ground, where soon the husband met his death,
and the poor woman was bereft of her natural means of
support and discharged from the station to return to what
was formerly her home to find it denuded of what little
furniture she had, and also of her apparel; which it was
deemed necessary in the interest of public protection to
burn.
She is in the feeblest state of health, with three young
children claiming support from her which she is utterly
unable to supply. She thus becomes a just and emergent
claimant upon the benevolence of the Launceston public,
which is never wanting where it is justly claimed.
I trust you will notice this case in your columns, and kindly
receive subscriptions for the poor destitute woman.
156

I enclose 1 as a small commencement to the contributions


which I beg to invite. Yours, etc., John Whitefoord.
Invermay, Nov. 2.
Sir, - As a parent of a large family I feel it my duty to bring
under the notice of the authorities the impropriety of our
local medico in visiting the small-pox cases, and from there
going to attend his other patients. One at least objected,
and would not allow him to come to his house after he knew
that the doctor had been in communication with the smallpox patient. Let all take every precaution, that they will not
be able to blame themselves or others. Yours, etc. Local.
Evandale, Nov. 3.
Smallpox at Evandale and Dr. Elliott
Sir,-In your issue of to-day a correspondent who signed
himself Local states he feels it his duty to bring under the
notice of the authorities the impropriety of our local medico
(myself) in visiting the small-pox case, and from there
going to attend his other patients. This is a mis-statement.
On the evening of the 2nd I went to the Council Clerk and
asked him what provision would be made for the attendance
upon the case and he told me I should have to continue to
attend myself, quoting from a letter he had received from
the acting secretary of the Central Board of Health, Hobart,
28th, Oct, 1887:-The doctor attending any case need not
necessarily be quarantined, he can take measures to
effectually disinfect himself after each visit, as has been
done in other parts of the colony. Upon this I prepared an
outside room on my own premises, with changes of clothing,
etc, and after visiting the patient on the morning of the 3 rd,
returned to it and changed every article of clothing I had on,
even changing my pipe and my walking stick, and thoroughly
fumigated and disinfected myself before visiting other
patients, so that the statement "that from there going to
visit his other patients" is incorrect, and I have never been in
contact with the case at all when in its contagious stage
without the proper precautions. I received no intimation,
official or otherwise, that Dr. Pike would attend the case till I
noticed it mentioned in yesterdays Daily Telegraph, and
subsequently was told so my Mr. Mault at about 6 oclock in
the evening. It is also an error of your own correspondent
157

that I had attended the case for ten days. I saw the
patient first on Thursday in lst week, thus making it seven
days, not ten. Yours etc. C. Henry Elliott. Evandale, Nov 4
1887
P.S. I am of opinion that it would be impossible for any one
to obtain the small-pox from me even if they tried, and I
consider the lucid and explanatory letter of Esox Lucius, in
your issue of today, as evidently written by someone who
understands the subject, to be the best letter yet written.
The Launceston Examiner Saturday 5 November, 1887
Letters
The following letter from Mr. D. Morrison, teacher of public
school, Bridgenorth, was read:Sir I beg leave to submit for your approval the propriety of
closing the Bridgenorth school until the small-pox scare
disappears. One family of five children who attended school
regularly is now under quarantine supervision, and the rest
are so much alarmed that they refuse to send their children
to school, and probably under existing circumstances, it is
the safest course. Awaiting your reply. I have, etc., D.
Morrison
The chairman said he replied at once not to close the school.
That sufficient reasons were not given to do so. He had
received the following letter, which is not of a very
complimentary nature.
To the chairman of the Board of Advice, Westbury.
Sir, - Your letter and note of the 14th inst. I duly received, and
was somewhat surprised at your remarks therein. Instead of
waiting for your reply I found it absolutely necessary to close
the school at once for the safety of my own family and the
district, the day after Mr. D. Storrer visited Rosemount. The
boys then attended school, and left their books and
exercises in the school-room; and this got wind, and was one
good reason for alarm and anxiety; and delay was quite out
of the question. The school will be re-opened when the
necessary isolation and precautionary measures are fully
and thoroughly gone through, and not before. The people
have had every reason to be alarmed, and have so still. The
158

disease might have made its appearance any day since the
doctor was there. Referring to your observations with
respect to the list forwarded to you for your signature, I may
be permitted to state that it is the same as those already
signed by you, and if you doubted their eligibility you should
before now have enquired into their circumstances. Before
the introduction of district boards, those children mentioned
in that list obtained free admission at a full meeting of the
Local Board at which the chairman, Rev. W. Law, and Rev. P.
Gleeson attended, along with the local members, and who
could have known the position of the parents better? Since
the abolition of the Central Board, teachers have
experienced the greatest irregularities in getting their
legitimate earnings through prohibitive and aggressive rules.
I am etc. D. Morrison.
Bridgenorth, 19th Oct., 1887
The chairman said he made no reply to that. On the 25th ult.
He received from the Minister of Education a letter addressed
to him by Mr. Morrison, the teacher, as follows:To Director Education Department, Hobart.
Sir, - I beg leave to inform you that one family in the
immediate vicinity of schoolroom being under quarantine
supervision the school was closed, and considering all the
circumstances in connection with it, this precautionary step
was absolutely necessary. It will be re-opened when all
danger of infection ceases I have, etc. D. Morrison.
Bridgenorth, 19th Oct., 1887
On the back of the foregoing letter was the following:Forwarded to the District Board of Advice, whose province it
was to close the school if necessary, not that of the teacher.
In the Ministers opinion the reason for closing does not in
prima facia view seem sufficient. E. Braddon.
These were the fruits of this case. He (the chairman)
proposed to forward the whole of Mr. Morrisons
correspondence to the Minister of Education for his perusal.
This was agreed to.
159

The Launceston Examiner


Monday Nov 7, 1887? (check date on microfilm)
The Treasurer in moving the item outbreak of small-pox
3000, spoke of the serious nature of the disease and the
enormous expense incurred in attempts to check the
epidemic. He sincerely hoped that the amount asked for
would cover all the expense incurred, and they might think
themselves fortunate if the amount covered all the
expenditure.
Mr. N.J. Brown thought while they were agreeing to the vote
they might express their sympathy to the residents of
Launceston in their calamity (Cheers). It was an opportune
time to express their sympathy with the residents of
Launceston and their endeavours to cope with the epidemic.
(Hear, hear). He hoped they were nearly at the end of the
epidemic.
Dr Crowther thought it was only right that his House should
indemnify the poor families who had been quarantined at
Mowbray for the loss they consequently sustained, and they
should do all in their power to assist those poor people to
commence life afresh. (Cheers.) He was glad the member
who had just spoken had struck the right keynote, and he
would go further and ask that a direct vote of money be
granted to assist these families who had been placed in such
unfortunate circumstances (Hear, hear). It was indeed very
pitiable to allow them to go to their homes without anything
to start them in life again, and as far as he was concerned he
would support any vote of money for such a purpose. He
also desired that a quarantine station at Launceston should
be fixed upon, and a permanent station established
immediately. In the face of the fact of the short tenure upon
which the present quarantine station at Launceston was held,
he could not understand the inactivity of the Government.
Dr Young hoped provision would be made to prevent the
dangerous practice of taking patients and other persons out
of warm beds and removing to Newnham. No person should
be removed without a medical certificate. The death rate of
the patients at Launceston was out of all proportion and
considerably higher than he had ever heard of, and he
160

thought the practice of removing patients from warm beds


was accountable to a large extent for the high death rate.
Dr. Huston expressed his heartfelt sympathy with the people
of Launceston especially those who would leave the
quarantine station almost homeless. He would support any
vote for assisting those unfortunate people. (Hear, hear).
Launceston deserved and needed sympathy and practical
sympathy, and he would gladly support each.
Mr Conway said on behalf of Launceston and its absent
members he thanked members of both sides of the House
from the bottom of his heart for the noble sentiments and
generous words and actions expressed.
The people of
Launceston would appreciate such, and never forget the
kindness shown, which he could assure the House would
never be forgotten. (Cheers).
Launceston had suffered
severely and it was balm to find members from the other end
of the colony taking up the ption they had.
Mr Burgess at length expressed his heartfelt sympathy with
Launceston, saying he knew business men there had suffered
keenly and seriously. This had been much more the case of
those whose houses and property had been destroyed, and
they needed practical sympathy, and he was sure people in
every district would gladly support Parliament in any vote to
recompense the sufferers (Cheers.). He moved that the
words and to relieve sufferers be added to the vote. (Hear,
hear).
The Treasurer said he was very pleased at the expressions of
members on both sides of the House on the subject, and
nothing gave Ministers greater pleasure than to amend the
item as suggested. Through the epidemic many sufferers
had been deprived of both friends and goods to such an
extent that already they had proved a burden upon the
charities of Launceston. (Hear, hear). Subscriptions had
already been collected on their behalf, and they all felt that
Launceston had suffered very largely by the outbreak. The
people of Launceston were less able through the depression
consequently existing to afford such assistance to the
sufferers as other wise they could, and in view of that fact
members could be ready both in their public and private
161

capacity to contribute towards such a fund. He would again


express his approval of the proposal and would amend the
items as suggested, and he was sure their friends in
Launceston would feel they had the sympathy of the House
and the public generally. (Cheers).
The item was then amended so as to give Ministers power to
appropriate moneys out of vote for the relief of sufferers
through small-pox, and unanimously agreed to. The House
adjourned at 11.30 p.m. till 4 oclock on Tuesday next.
The Launceston Examiner Fri 19 November, 1887
We learn from Dr. Pardey that the last of the suspects at the
Mowbray quarantine station, Margaret Hustler, was
discharged yesterday. There are now only four convalescents
at the station Mrs Marshall, her child, Mrs. Susannah
Watson and Bennetts child and Dr. Pardey expects to be
released with them at the end of the month.
He
acknowledges with thanks the receipt of a parcel of books
from Messrs. Walch Bros and Birchall. Dr. Pike yesterday
visited the patient Lewis at Evandale and reports that she
continues to progress favourably.
The Launceston Examiner Mon 21 November, 1887
Current Topics
We are glad to state that Dr. Pikes report with regard to the
last small-pox patient, the child Lewis, at Evandale, is most
satisfactory, and we may congratulate ourselves that the
outbreak is at an end. Unless, therefore, something fresh
occurs no further reports will appear in our columns.
PHOTOCOPY REST OF ARTICLE FROM THE LIBRARY.
The Launceston Examiner 6th December, 1887
Current Topics
.. The break-up of the small-pox quarantine station was
effected yesterday. Dr. Pardey and the nurses left after being
isolated from September 27. Anything that was likely to
retain infection bedding, curtains, etc, - was burnt
162

yesterday. The woodwork of the buildings will be retained


and removed. Two men are in charge of the goods, and Mr.
Mault and Dr. Pardey will visit the station to see that all
necessary disinfecting arrangements are carried on. Mr.
Mault requests us to say that his report on the outbreak was
not withdrawn because of inaccuracies. He had supplied a
draft which was subject to alteration. Unfortunately it was
issued without his sanction.
The Launceston Examiner 17th December, 1887
The Recent Small-Pox Outbreak
The protest forwarded to the Chief Secretary on Friday
evening by Mr W. Hartnoll, MHA, on behalf of himself and
other residents of Launceston, protesting against the
decision of the government to remove the cottage hospitals
used for small-pox patients at the Mowbray quarantine
station into Launceston and store them, has led to the
following correspondence by telegram:From Mr. A. Mault to Mr. Hartnoll Premier has shown me
your telegram of last night.
The movable hospitals at
Mowbray have been disinfected, according to the orders of
Drs. Thompson and Pardey, approved of by Dr. Pike, who all
declare they are quite safe.
They will be stored by
themselves and only used (if ever) for similar occasions. The
buildings to be burnt are to be destroyed because their
destruction was part of the contract with M. Grubb.
From Mr. Hartnoll to Mr. Malt Have shown your telegram to
the Mayor and all leading citizens as I could meet them.
Unanimous disapproval at contents; strong feeling on this
subject. If you do store them in the Customs yard the public
will take the matter into their own hands and burn them.
Although a believer in law and order I would gladly take part
in the work of destruction. If the value of such a paltry lot of
timber is to be considered why not store it in the Government
building near the Rifle Butts! You may be assured the
inhabitants of Launceston will not have this pestilential
timber in their midst.
From Mr. Hartnoll to the Chief Secretary. Upon further
163

reflection I imagine I see a way out of the difficulty, and at


the same time relieve Launceston police of a very unpleasant
duty. The Launceston public have had quite enough of the
very name of small-pox, but as you evidently wish to
perpetuate the feeling, your ambition should be gratified. I
would suggest if you will allow the materials to be forwarded
to Hobart, and stored, if you like, in the Hobart Customs yard.
I will undertake to pay all freight and other expenses. Reply
early, so that I can make immediate arrangements with Mr.
Grant.
From the Chief Secretary to Mr. Hartnoll The property will be
duly protected against the law-abiding citizens and yourself,
and I caution you against taking the responsibility you say
you will incur.
From Mr. Hartnoll to the Chief Secretary Thanks for the
caution, I can now understand how rebels are made. Your
inconsistency is remarkable, 30, I understand, is offered as
compensation to burn Lewiss house at Evandale, where
?????????????? existed, and the hospital buildings where half
a ??? deaths occurred, are to be given by your Government
as a Christmas offering to the people of Launceston. Mr.
William Bishop informs me that he has seen the small-pox
scabs in the ?? of these hospital buildings. Surely you do not
mean to disregard a reasonable protest and entirely ignore
public opinion? Be wise and abandon this (recommended?)
folly(?) and gracefully accede to the common-sense
sentiment of the citizens.
We may add that the objection to the removal of these
cottage hospitals into the town is very widespread, and at a
special meeting of the Municipal Council on Saturday the
idea was strongly and unanimously condemned. A resolution
was drawn up expressing regret at the decision arrived at by
the Government to remove the buildings at all, and
protesting against their storage anywhere in Launceston.
The Town Clerk was instructed to telegraph the resolution to
the Chief Secretary at once.
CHECK DATE FOR THE FOLLOWING

164

The Quarantine Hospitals


It would seem that some misapprehension has occurred with
respect to the quarantine buildings which were intended to
be burned last night under the direction of Mr. H.N. Taylor,
Inspector of works. Such order to destroy referred only to the
suspects etc., quarters, which were the old booths, and
didn't include the hospitals which have formed the subject of
the telegrams between Mr. Hartnoll and the Government. Mr.
Hartnoll informs us that he sent the following telegram to the
Chief Secretary on Monday afternoon:- If I undertake during
the next few days to collect sufficient to defray the cost of
new hospital buildings, will you permit those now at Mowbray
to be burnt?
The deepest feeling of indignation is
everywhere expressed, and a very earnest hope entertained
that you will reconsider a misguided resolve. To which the
Chief Secretary replied:- As the action taken is upon the
advice of the legally constituted authorities, I do not purpose
to interfere for it may be urged that the Blanchflowers,
Watsons, Mills, and Barkways houses be destroyed.
As the doors, sashes and flooring of the hospitals had already
been removed to town and stored in the Customs yard, it is
evident that it would have been a farce even had the
Government made the concession asked and allow the shells
of the two hospitals to be burnt. On Monday night, however,
an act of incendiarism was committed at the station, for
which someone will have to answer, even though
perpetrated as a joke, as the matter is now in the hands of
Superintendent Armstrong. About 10 oclock the nurses and
doctors quarters, two chains of fencing, and the female
hospital were burnt to the ground. Except as an illegal act to
be deprecated, the result will not be deplored, though the
loss is made regrettable from the fact that the telephone
instrument which was in the doctors quarters is destroyed.
The remaining hospital was taken down yesterday afternoon
and brought to the Customs yard to keep company with the
other articles stored. It was noticed that the packages were
not carefully placed in the vehicles, as pieces of boards and
planks kept dropping off on the road and were picked up by
children to take home for firewood.
A somewhat
unaccountable feature of the affair is that the man in charge
at the station on Monday night is utterly oblivious of the
165

circumstances and knows nothing of the burning or the


incidental excitement. We understand there is no truth in the
rumour prevalent the last few days that another outbreak
had occurred. It has probably arisen from the fact that a
case of cow-pox was reported to a medical man and his
opinion obtained so as to be on the safe side.

166

The Launceston Examiner Thursday 15 December,


1887
Further Destruction of Quarantine Station
The fire-bell rang out an alarm of fire shortly after 11 oclock
last evening, and there was certainly no possibility of
mistaking the direction of the conflagration, as the sky to the
northward, in the vicinity of the Race-course Hotel, was all
aglow. It was not expected that the remaining portions of the
Mowbray Quarantine Station, the loose boxes to the southwest of the grand-stand, and portions of the stables in close
proximity would be on two reels started for the scene of the
fire, but finding it was the remaining portions of the
quarantine station, where no fire-plug was available, they
halted at the foot of the hill near the Race-course Hotel. A
large crowd of spectators, however, proceeded to the racecourse, and there found the loose boxes above-mentioned
almost burnt to the ground. The stables near the grandstand, together with the fence bounding the saddling
paddock were also ablaze, both fires burning vigorously.
Many willing hands were found to prevent the destruction, of
the grand-stand, towards which the flames, aided by a light
north-westerly wind, were quickly making. The progress of
the flames was checked by pulling down a portion of the
fence and removing the material from the vicinity of the
flames. The loose boxes were burnt to the ground, and a
large galvanised iron tank, used at race times for watering
the horses, which had been erected on wooden uprights, fell
over as these were burnt, and the water thus upset helped to
quench the flames.
But for the exertions of Mr.
Superintendent Armstrong and others, the flames, which had
taken hold of the fence towards the Race-course Hotel, would
have endangered the latter property, and his exertions were
also beneficial in preventing a subsequent advance of the
flames at the other end of the line towards the grand-stand.
The ten loose boxes, it may be mentioned, cost Mr C. B.
Grubb 300 when erected, but when at the outset of the
recent small-pox outbreak they were utilised as constables
quarters the government spent a considerable additional
sum upon them.
The conflagration will of course be set down in Hobart as the
work of an incendiary, but the fire has presumably been
167

accidental. It is stated that during the afternoon some of the


Government workmen were engaged in burning rubbish
within a few yards of the buildings, and as the grass was very
long and the weather dry it is thought some sparks were thus
conveyed to the buildings by the strong wind prevailing. How
the other buildings caught fire is a mystery, as they are
situated some 300 yards or 400 yards from the loose boxes.
The first persons from town who arrived on the scene state
that there were no persons visible when they reached there.
Mr Supt. Armstrong visited the station yesterday, and states
that all was safe when he left there at 6.30 p.m.

The Launceston Examiner Saturday 17th December,


1887
A committee of the Epidemiological Society has
recently reported on vaccination, having obtained
very important information on the subject, especially
with regard to re-vaccination.
Referring to this
enquiry the The Lancat says:- The smallpox
hospitals have supplied the committee with the most
positive evidence as to the immunity from smallpox
conferred by re-vaccination upon attendants of the
sick; of 734 persons thus employed 179 had
previously had small-pox, leaving 655, of whom 10
were not re-vaccinated, all but these 10 persons
escaped small-pox and all these ten were attacked.
This should entirely dispose of the oft repeated but
erroneous statement of anti-vaccinationists, that
small-pox attendants escape disease from the fact
that, they are recruited from those who have already
passed through an attack of small-pox. It is, indeed
impossible to read the evidence adduced on this point
without understanding that it is within the power of
every person absolutely to protect himself from all
attacks of this disease.

168