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The William Osler Papers

[Draft of "The Fixed Period"] pdf (20,851,734 Bytes) ocr (34,468 Bytes)
[Draft of "The Fixed Period"]
This is the typescript, with autograph corrections, of Osler's farewell address to the Johns Hopkins University in February of 1905. His joking reference to the limited usefulness of men over age sixty and to Trollope's (fictional) idea of euthanizing such elders caused a storm of negative stories in the press, and earned him hate mail from outraged readers who believed his suggestion a serious one.
Although Osler left most of his large library to his alma mater, McGill University, he noted a few exceptions in memoranda jotted down during the last few months of his life. This document was designated "To the Surgeon General's Library, Washington: So difficult to give anything to a collection so rich; but I thought that perhaps the manuscript of my farewell address, The Fixed Period, which caused a little excitement, would find its best resting place in a library which I owe so much and some whose members--Billings, Fletcher, and Garrison--have been my intimate friends. It is the typewritten copy as I read it and I have put a note, the printing of which might be deferred a few years." (The note referred to was not found until many years later: W. W. Francis, the first Osler Librarian, included the text in his 1949 article "Osler and the Reporters".)
Number of Image Pages:
21 (20,851,734 Bytes)
1905-02-22 (February 22, 1905)
Osler, William
Original Repository: National Library of Medicine. History of Medicine Division
MS B 146
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
Exhibit Category:
"Father of Modern Medicine": The Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, 1889-1905
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Drafts (documents)
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