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tions of ignorant pretenders in medicine. The members constituting this new board, appointed by the governor, were Drs. S. W. Williston, D. P. Cook, F. P. Hatfield, H. W. Roby, G. F. Johnston, E. B. Packer, and O. F. Lewis. The board was organized by electing Doctor Johnston president, and Doctor Roby secretary. At the end of the first year Doctor Packer was elected president, and Doctor Roby reelected secretary. In July of 1902, Doctor Williston resigned his membership on the board on account of having taken up his residence in Chicago, and Dr. J. M. Hamme, of Cotton wood Falls, was appointed to fill his place.
VITAL STATISTICS. The following table has been compiled from reports made to this office by assessors, and comprises two years ending, March, 1902:
This brief resumé of vital statistics here reported is unsatisfactory, knowing as I do how inaccurate they are, but, with the law as it is, it is the best that can be done. We get our birth and death reports from physicians, who are expected to report same to county health officers, and also from assessors who collect these statistics and file them with the county clerk. These statistics are returned to this office by the county clerks and county physicians, and should approximately correspond. As a matter of fact, there is uniformly a discrepancy in their reports, and, from a large number of counties in
the state, a very wide discrepancy. Even marriage statistics, important as it is to have them reliable, are not all recorded, for clergymen occasionally neglect to return to the probate judge the certificates for record, after having performed the ceremony.
PERSONNEL OF THE BOARD. The personnel of the board has been changed during the past two years. On May 9, 1901, Dr. S. W. Williston, of Lawrence, resigned as a member of the State Board of Health to accept an appointment on the Board of Medical Registration and Examination. We regret to say that recently Doctor Williston has resigned from that board, and also his position as dean of the medical department of Kansas University, to accept a professorship in Chicago University. While the state of Kansas loses a valuable citizen, we congratulate Chicago University in adding to its list of professors so broad-gauged and scholarly a man.
On May 10, 1901, Dr. J. B. Dykes, of Lebanon, was appointed to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Doctor Williston. On June 25, 1902, Dr. R. J. Morton, of Green, resigned from the board, and the same day the governor appointed Dr. M. N. Gardner, of Greenleaf, to fill the vacancy.
The latter part of March, 1901, the governor reappointed B. J. Alexander, of Hiawatha, and G. W. Hollembeak, of Cimarron, for the term ending March 28, 1904. The appointment of Doctor Dykes will also expire in 1904. In April, 1902, the governor reappointed Dr. S. J. Crumbine, of Dodge City, and Dr. Chas. Lowry, of Topeka, for the term ending March 28, 1905. Doctor Gardner's term also expires in 1905.
On June 7, 1902, Dr. C. E. Munn, bacteriologist of the State Board of Health, died at Stormont hospital. Doctor Munn had been seri. ously ill for several months and suffered greatly a long time prior to his death. Doctor Munn was connected with the State Board of Health comparatively but a short time, yet his work in the capacity of bacteriologist had been of a high grade and was entirely satisfactory. Dr. Sara E. Greenfield, of Hiawatha, was elected bacteriologist in June, 1902.
The present secretary resigned as a member of the board on September 4, 1902, to accept the position made vacant by the death of Doctor Swan, who had been the efficient secretary for nearly four years.
The services of Dr. William B. Swan in connection with the State Board of Health were of such a character that an account of the personnel of the board would be incomplete without a more extended reference to his life and untimely death.
Doctor Swan was born at Paterson, N. J., in the year 1864, and was
drowned by the capsizing of a rowboat off the shore of Ludington, Mich., September 1, 1902. His early education was received in the public schools of Wisconsin. In 1889 he completed a collegiate course at Baker University, Baldwin, Kan., being graduated from that institution with high honors. In his early life he followed the trade of brass-founder, and for a number of years assisted in his father's foundry, in Topeka. In 1892 he was elected to the legislature as representative of one of the city districts of Shawnee county, and served his constituency acceptably and well. He was popular with the people of all parties and could have been reelected, but declined a a second term. It had been his definite purpose in life to follow the practice of medicine as his chosen calling. With this in view, in 1893 he entered a medical college in Chicago, where he distinguished himself by his devotion to his studies. On graduating from this college, he
, at once entered upon the work of his profession in the city of Topeka. In the year 1899 he was elected secretary of the State Board of Health, in which position he was serving at the time of his unfortunate death. It is no disparagement to other men who have held the position of secretary of the State Board of Health to say that the service of Doctor Swan was of such a character as to receive the cordial and hearty indorsement of not only the medical fraternity, but the people of the entire state as well. He made an ideal secretary. He brought to the discharge of the duties of his office devotion to the work, sound scholarship, and good business principles. During his term of service, by his influence he brought about needed legislation, thereby strengthening and making more efficient the work of the Board of Health. On account of his pleasing personality he was always fortunate in securing the cooperation of the local health officers in the various counties of the state. Upon his labors in this direction, however, it is not necessary to dwell. What he accomplished along this line has been recorded in his own reports.
Last August Doctor Swan went with his family to Ludington, Mich., for the purpose of taking a much-needed rest. While there he enjoyed the pleasures of that summer resort to its fullest measure. The term of his vacation was drawing to a close and he was making preparations to return to his home in Topeka. On the evening before the day set for his departure, he, with two friends with whom he had been in bathing, resolved to try the sport of rowing on the lake in the face of a rough sea which happened to be on at the time. They rowed out a distance of some 400 feet from the shore and were on the point of turning when a huge wave struck the boat and capsized it, throwing the three out into the water. Doctor Swan, unfortunately, could not swim, and, though his two friends made every possible effort to save
his life, he soon sank. His body was washed ashore some forty minutes after the accident, and at once every effort was put forth to resuscitate him, but with no avail. His life was gone out. His death is a loss to the State Board of Health, to the people of the community in which he lived, to the profession which he represented, and to the whole state of Kansas. Cheerful in disposition, cordial and kind in his treatment of all, he soon called around him a circle of admirers and friends, who deeply mourn his loss. He was loyal to his friends, devoted to his calling, ideal in his home life, and faithful as a public official. Doctor Swan represented in the best sense the highest type of manhood and the highest type of citizenship. Of him it can truly be said that the world is better for his having lived.
RECOMMENDATIONS. The State Board of Health would recommend the enactment of several laws that would materially increase its usefulness. At the present time the board has merely an advisory position in regard to the disposition of sewage and the control of the water-supply for towns and institutions of the state. No law would be more far-reaching in its good effects than to place the sewage systems and water-supply under the absolute control of this board. The board has among its advisory members Prof. F. O. Marvin, who is an expert sanitary and civil engineer, who should have greater influence and power in the control of these sanitary matters.
Another change should be the placing of the bacteriologist of the board upon a salary. The present arrangement of paying a fee of five dollars for each examination made is unsatisfactory and limits the work to such an extent that it is of comparatively little value. The arrangement should be such that all physicians in the state could send work of this character, which many times is of great importance, to the state bacteriologist and have it done without expense to them. Heretofore these examinations have been made in the private office of the bacteriologist, and it would be more desirable to have such work done in a laboratory at the state-house.
The board would also recommend that the law creating the State Board of Health be amended so as to allow the appointing by the governor of one layman on the board, preferably an attorney interested in sanitary science.
Some legislation is also very much needed which would make it possible to get from physicians an accurate report of all births and deaths which occur in the state, and also that would compel those who perform marriage ceremonies to return the certificate of marriage to the probate judge, thus enabling us to have more accurate vital statistics.
There is an urgent necessity for a change in the appropriation for the general expenses of the board. The salary of the secretary should be raised from $1200 to $1500 a year. The appropriation for the stenographer should be $600 instead of $540 a year. There should be an appropriation of $500 a year for a bacteriologist. The appropriation of $800 as made two years ago for sanitary fund can be cut down to $300. The board has been crippled the past two years on account of the small amount appropriated for expenses, which was only $460. This is entirely insufficient to pay the expense of the four quarterly meetings and other incidental expenses; we should have $700 a year. This will make a total of $3600, and will very largely increase the usefulness of the board. Respectfully submitted.
CHARLES LOWRY, M. D.,