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The William Osler Papers

Letter from R. P. Howard to William Osler pdf (3,499,894 Bytes) transcript of pdf
Letter from R. P. Howard to William Osler
Howard writes of Osler's intention to become an Oculist. Mr. Morgan, resident Surgeon at Moorfields, and formerly in charge of the eye-wards at Netley, wrote to Howard informing him that he would like to come to Montreal as an Oculist. If this were to happen it would seriously jeopardize Osler's hopes of making eye dissection his specialty.
[Description courtesy of McGill University.]
Soon after Osler's death in 1919, Lady Osler asked their good friend Dr. Harvey Cushing to write a biography. For this project, Cushing gathered a wide variety of material, including a substantial amount of Osler correspondence and other memorabilia borrowed from Osler's family, friends, and colleagues. He employed three secretaries to transcribe these documents, and later donated the transcripts (along with his other working materials) to the Osler Library. Many of the original documents were returned to the owners. The originals that were retained, together with the Cushing transcripts, constitute the largest and most accessible collection of Osler's correspondence.
Harvey Cushing's "Life of Sir William Osler" was published by Oxford University Press in 1925, and was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1926.
Item is handwritten.
Number of Image Pages:
6 (3,499,894 Bytes)
1872-10-25 (October 25, 1872)
Howard, R. P.
Osler, William
Original Repository: Osler Library of the History of Medicine, McGill University. Osler Library Archive Collections, P417: Harvey Cushing Fonds
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
Exhibit Category:
Medical Education and Early Career, McGill University, 1870-1884
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Letters (correspondence)
Physical Condition:
Montreal 25 Oct 72
My dear Osler
About the time your nice note reached me Mrs. Howard was very ill and since then I have lost her. After several months of great suffering born with Christian resignation. She passed away on the 29 Sept. many things of various kinds have prevented my writing you ere this, and you
will I hope you forgive the delay. You have by this time well settled down w yr. work in the metropolis I doubt not and are picking up much that will be useful to you hereafter.
Teaching your prospects as Oculist, you will have much more to contend with then we ever thought of when we spoke together on the budget in July or August last Mr. Morgan, resident surgeon at Monfields, & formerly in charge of the [ . . . ] Wrote to me impressing me that he proposed coming to
Montreal as an Oculist . We had known each other six years before it month feels during a short visit I made at that time. As his qualifications are high the Dean approved much of his intentions & [ . . . ] To him without effort. He had not answered my letter but that may be because of my delay of five or six weeks in answering his -- the delay was caused by the absence of Dr. Campbell upon his annual fishing tour -- however, Dr. [ . . . ] while last summer
Saw Mr. Morgan & learned that he had some intentions of coming to Montreal. Of course were to come it would [ . . . ] affect yr. hopes as to making eye drs a specialty -- as between you & Dr. Butler I may safely say, you would have the countenance & help out [ . . . ] old teachers -- but here "the plot thickens." This but two or three days ago, that one of our graduates, whose name I cannot recall called [ . . . ] today that he had come to settle on an [ . . . ]. He held some situation in Boston for a year or two
where he says he studied eye surgery under Dr. Williams -- one of the leading oculists and subsequently traveled to London & [ . . . ] for the same purpose -- the Dean had told him of Mr. Morgan's intention to settle here & referred him to me for information -- [ . . . ] -- but he gave me to understand he intended to try his chances [ . . . ], of course, this will [ . . . ] with Dr. Butler & even with myself as the
field is limited one -- you had better see Mr. Morgan & ascertain if he still intends to come here.
I cannot help thinking that you had better [ . . . ] to cultivate the whole field of Med. Surg. -- paying especial attention to practical work in the physiological laboratory -- which in my opinion, will soon be one of the most popular departments of Medical teaching. [ . . . ] if, had of course will oblige you also to pay special attention to medical chemistry -- you
will certainly require to become familiar with the [ . . . ] methods of analyzing the composition of the urine -- but on these [ . . . ], Bastian & Sanderson will be your best guides -- this course [ . . . ]. I think prevent you from working at Monfields & human after all be able to make your acquaintance with ophthalmic dis. Profitable as a practitioner. Should Mr. Morgan decide not to come, you would see that cases have the influence of us all to assist you as an oculist -I met Dr. Campbell today & he requested me to process
an order from Dr. Wright upon Merck, the medical bookseller for your books - which you will select [ . . . ] And have [ . . . ] upon their graduation prize awarded to William Osler.
Let me hear from you when you have [ . . . ] & What you were doing. Excuse the delay in this reply and with my kind regards believe me you were very best
R. P. Howard
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