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The Fred L. Soper Papers

[Excerpt from Fred Soper's diary] pdf (393,411 Bytes) transcript of pdf
[Excerpt from Fred Soper's diary]
These entries relate several stories about problems encountered with staff at hookworm posts and how Soper handled them.
Number of Image Pages:
6 (393,411 Bytes)
Date Supplied:
2-28 December 1920
Soper, Fred L.
This item is in the public domain. It may be used without permission.
Medical Subject Headings (MeSH):
Attitude of Health Personnel
Exhibit Category:
Learning the Ropes: Hookworm Disease in South America, 1920-1927
Box Number:
Unique Identifier:
Document Type:
Physical Condition:
Series: Diaries, 1919-1975
Folder: Diary, December 1919-December 1920
November 30, 1920
November 26. On this day I went to Ribeirao and found Dr. Gantois in the post making reports.
In regard to the trouble between the guarda chefe and Dr. Gantois, all the nurses and employees, without exception, spoke in his favor. In addition, Pedro received of Dr. Gantois one hundred and seventy milreis.
Dr. responsible for:
exama do sangre
prediccaos a guardas
marking personally the amount of shenopodium
Requisitions for Alonzo feito
Money for Alonto feito
Officio for Alonzo feito
The matter of returning Alonzo to Ribeirao.
December 2, 1920. Dr. Carlos Gantois came to office in response to my telegram asking his presence in Recife. I told him I found it necessary to ask his withdrawal from the Commissao. Naturally he asked why. I told him I had found at least two cases in which he had given injections of 914. He asked that I would write this in an officio. I gave him the opportunity of writing the request for his resignation which I then copied and signed giving as a cause for the request that he had practiced in Ribeirao. He assured me he will take the matter to the daily papers, that there is another chefe of the Commissao above me in Brazil and that his honor must come clear. He showed me his new Smith & Wesson 32 revolver (colt model) which he says cost 25O$OO0 and insists he will kill in the rua any one who calls him a ladrone. He says he shall go to Ribeirao and get signatures as to his service and conduct which he will take to the journals and that he will go to Ribeirao now to practice. He says that I have not been just with him and that he finds the Commissao a mess of intrigues.
December 2. In checking over expenses for Cabo month of November, I found the comidas and the transporte very high. The transporte item showed 6 sacks of farella during the month, of the last the 23rd of Nov. Alarico B. Lima, guarda chefe, when questioned, said he had had no farella for the animals for over a month.
When summoned to the office, Dr. Liciniano who had charge of the budget explained that this was farella which had been bought during the absence of Alarico with me on a trip to Campina Grande, but had been spread out over the month "to appear better." When reminded that Alaric had returned from this trip before the payments were made for the month of October, he explained that he had wanted the expenses of October to appear low and so had left this account over. However, on looking up the expense book for October I found that 2 sacks of forella are charged on the 22nd of the month (Oct) which was truly when Alarico was with me in Campina Grande.
December 6. 10:05 Dr. Gantois appeared just now in the office interrupting an examination I was making of Candide de Queiros and said he wished to talk with me. He said he had been to Riberao and had some papers to show me.
He proceeded to show papers drawn up and signed by the populace of Riberao and some of the Usinas and gave me an opportunity to read them. After reading these he said he was going to the journals and have them printed, if I did not reconsider his dismissal.
When I did not reconsider immediately he said he desired to have me think over the injustice I had done him and offered to give me four days to think it over.
I told him I had already spent 4 days thinking the matter over and under no circumstances would I reconsider.
He left saying that he was a Brazilian and not an American and that he would surprise me with the propaganda he made against the Commissao Rockefeller. He left without shaking hands although he entered with a hand shake.
December 7. 2 of the articles appeared in the Diario today. I understand through Sette that he has made much propaganda against us there that Cardosa and Manoel Soares da Silva, Rufina Santa Anna e Mario Santos were crying at the station.
December 6. Went to Cabo with Mr. Atkinson and Mr. Bateman of the Societie Cotonniere Belge Brasiliero Em Morenos today and showed the working of our post. In talking of putting in work for Morenos we come to the following tentative arrangement:
To install a doctor with two guardas of the Commissao.
The house to be furnished by the company and all possible help to be given by the company.
The extra guardas two or three in number to be furnished by the factory and trained in a post of the Commissao are to be paid by the factory.
The Comissao pays the medicines.
The factory pays one half of the salary of our personnel and one half of the expense of comidas.
This work could probably be started in April.
December 7. Received word from Dr. Liceniano asking guaranty and some other things which cannot give.
December 8. Received telegram from Dr. Liceniano asking reply.
December 9. Came to Caruaru. Was met at the station by Dr. Liceniano d'Almeida and Dr. Henrique Pinto. It seems that Dr. Liceniano has had sick children and is after all glad to leave Caruaru on the following terms:
Municipio to furnish
House or houses
Lugar para animales
4 contos de reis per anno em ou antes 2 de Janeiro.
2 contos de reis para fazer service especial.
We examined two houses which when cleaned should serve very nicely. I am to write contracts and sign sending both here for his signature after which he shall return one to me.
Caruaru is a large municipio of 51,000 people. We may be entering on a long contract.
December 10. Returned to Recife.
December 11. Recife
December 12. Sunday
December 13. Recife - Dr. Alonzo in Recife. I learn that Dr. Gantois had given "folga" to employees at Ribeirao after he was dismissed.
December l4. Went to Maceio by train. Dr. Parto was on the train. Stop at hotel Nora Eistra. There I meet a man who has known Vargas and reports Vargas as recently in Maceio.
Dr. Edison Cavalcanti meets me. Dr. Thaden arrives at 4 p.m. Dec. 16 in time to prevent my going on the Itapura. Secure map and make a tentative list of places to be visited on inspection.
Camaragile - Home of Governor Sao Luiz
Porte Calvo
with 2 or 2 other places on margin of Rio Sao
Sant Anna
Palmura dos Indios
Atalaia ou uniao.
Failed to meet Governor
Dr. Fernandes Lima. He has a son named Waldemar.
Learned Dr. Vargas had sailed or Rio, Dec. 2.
December 17. Returned from Maceio - engine off the track. Arrived late.
December 18. Recife. Talked with prefeito of Olinda.
December 19. Sunday - Olinda.
December 20. For Cabo.
Read regulaments to all of personnel of post.
December 21. Spent the day on horseback in zone of Roberto Moranhao. I have determined to require that all treatments be indicated by the doctor in the zone after the first of the year. Also find it very bad for any guarda to accept money from any person in the zone.
December 22. Returned to Recife.
December 23. Went to Ribeirao. Dismissed Ascendino
December 24. Returned Recife
December 25. Xmas - visited Dr. Gouveia.
December 26. To Paulista with Dr. Ignacio and the prefeito of Olinda to speak with Dr. Arthur Lundgren in regard to our work. Gave him a chance to contribute some money but do not know that he will.
In the afternoon talked with Dr. Gouveia in his home. He says the Federal contract respects ours. He says that Vargas is said to have stolen 2,500 francs at Boa Viagem as well as having borrowed ten contos of friends for gambling.
December 27. Payday in Cabo.
Maranhao Roberto
Fined 3 times 30$000
1 for changing dates
1 for discourtesy to guarda chefe
1 for not giving treatments indicated.
Grangeiro 5$ for using another animal than one indicated.
Josue A. Oliveira
100$ for marking treatments not given
Augusto M. de Rocha l00$000 mesma
Edmundo Dopsa
fined 5$ for disrespect to guarda chefe.
Received something interesting from Rio in regard to Vargas which I do not believe.
December 28. Pay day in Ribeirao.
Marauhao fined 30$000 for other month
Jose Rufino talks too much
Explanations of Well Map
A - Pump
B - Iron construction
C - Suction pipe
D - Earth level
E - High water level
F - River sand
G - Excavation
H - Low water level
I - Sand and pebble
K - W
January l4, 1921. Arrival Dr. Strode
Saturday Victoria.
Saturday Cabo - 3 blowouts
Sunday Ribeirao
conference with Governor
March on Tuesday
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