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Medicine at Harper's Ferry

Sources & Images
Source Name Image(s)
CollectionNational Archives and Records Administration: General Information Index, RG94 view image
CollectionNational Archives and Records Administration: General Information Index, RG94 view image
Document Information
Date June 12, 1800
Author Name Charles Brown (primary) Location: Harper's Ferry
Recipient Name Samuel Hodgdon (primary) Location: Philadelphia
Summary Need for medicines and medical supplies at Harpers Ferry; mentions resignation of McHenry and dismissal of Pickering.
Document Format Autograph Letter Signed
Document Notes [not available]
Content Notes [not available]
Related Persons/Groups Samuel Hodgdon; Doctor Charles Brown; Secretary of War; James McHenry; Timothy Pickering; President; John Adams; General Pinckney; superintendent; Hospital Department; infantry; artillery; surgeon; paymaster department; ;
Related Places Philadelphia; Arch Street; Harper's Ferry; ;
Keywords resignation; dismissal; medicine; instruments; shop furniture; return; order; medical assistance; hospital stores; surgical instruments; damp; ;
Key Phrases informing me of the resignation of ye secretary of war & the dismissing of the secretary of State, the letter astonishes & grieves me because I believe Mr. Pickering incapable of doing wrong; President has lost much popularity by it; Pickering stands high in the mind of the people; directed me to inform the secretary of War that; not 30 dollars worth of medicine here; there are a great number of people still here & number suffering for want of medical assistance; not a single article of hospital on hand; not knowing who the secretary of war is; I have taken the liberty of troubling you with this communication; some here already add to the mass of abuse laid on government that of willfully depriving the surgeon of the means of ding good; far from believing the cause intentional; whole of the Infantry will be disbanded on Saturday next; many could be enlisted for the Artillery but they have neither money nor authority; some strange neglect in the paymaster department; no money sent on to me; pray request the secretary to attend t the above business without delay by express or other ways as our situation is certainly very disagreeable; surgical instruments are in a damp store & will be useless in a few weeks;
Transcription

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Doctor Charles Brown 12th June 1800 Rcd 18th
Harpers ferry 13 June 1800
17
Colonel Samuel Hodgdon
No 128 Act Street
Philadelphia
Harpers ferry June 12th 1800
Dr Sir
I was honored with yours of the 13th May informing me of the resignation of ye [the] secretary of war & the dismissing of the secretary of State, the letter astonishes & grieves me because I believe Mr. Pickering incapable of doing wrong, the President has lost much popularity by it, & Mr. Pickering stands high in the mind of the people.
General Pinckney has just directed me to inform the secretary of War, that in [undecipherable] of an order, he has been obliged to deliver to the superintendent, every article of medicine, instruments, shop furniture, &c belonging to the Hospital department, there is not 30 dollars worth of medicine here, but there are some good instruments, the general suppose that the secretary of war will order the superentendant of the work to deliver all to me, and after ward, to make a return of what may be wanted to form a compleat apartment & send to you that they may be forwarded to me immediately as there are a great number of people still here & number suffering for want of medical assistance; there is not a single article of hospital on hand. Not knowing who the secretary of war is, I have taken the liberty of troubling you with this communication being well convinced that you would lay the business before him immediately our situation will not admit of delay, & there are some here who already add to the mass of abuse laid
on government that of willfully depriving the surgeons of the means of doing good, the effect has certainly been produced but I am far from believing the cause intentional. The whole of the Infantry will be disbanded on Saturday next; many could be enlisted for the Artillery but they have neither money nor authority - some strange neglect in the paymaster department no money sent on to me; I am building a handsome hut & shall be comfortably fixed, i hope to cee you here this fall. Remember me as usual & pray request the secretary to attend to the above business without delay by express or other ways as our situation is certainly very disagreeable; with much esteem I am Dr Sir Your very humble Servant Chas. Brown
N B The surgical instruments are in a damp store & will be useless in a few weeks they should be in a dry place & frequently examined.
Col. Hodgdon }