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committee are of opinion, that the exclusive claims The committee are well aware, that any investiadvanced by Dr. Jackson,* though now very exten- gation and opinion which shall have the sanction of sively recognized in foreign countries, are unfounded, this board-emanating, as all must admit, from being unwarranted alike by his acts and by his those who ought to know most of the circumstances omissions; and that they involve great injustice of this discovery–will be entitled to great weight. towards Dr. Mortan ;-that their names will be for- That investigation has been conducted by the comever jointly, though not equally, associated in this mittee under a solemn sense of responsibility to the discovery; Dr. Jackson being entitled to the credit public, to posterity, and to the cause of truth and of having rendered readily available the existing justice. Personal feelings have been laid aside. knowledge upon the subject of ether, which Dr. When this inquiry was instituted, neither of the Morton was really, though not avowedly, seeking committee had ever seen Dr. Morton ; and both of to obtain ; and Dr. Morton having first demonstrated them, on the other hand, were in friendly relations its safety and efficacy in the prevention of pain during with Dr. Jackson. There had always existed surgical operations;—and that Dr. Morton, by con- between them and him feelings of mutual respect senting to permit Dr. Jackson's name to be united and regard. No friend of Dr. Jackson would wilwith his in the patent, with the right to receive one lingly remove a merited laurel from the brows of tenth part of its profits, has shown himself disposed, one whose scientific attainments, upright intentions, fairly and honorably, to recognize the amount of and amiable character, all are happy to acknowlhis indebtedness to Dr. Jackson's advice.
edge. The committee, indeed, believe that he is The essential conclusions in the case may be thus honestly self-deceived in this mat concisely stated :
We submit our report upon this subject to the 1st. Dr. Jackson does not appear at any time to board, in the assurance that it will receive their have made any discovery, in regard to ether, which deliberate examination, and that its conclusions will was not in print in Great Britain some years before. be adopted, if at all, under a like solemn sense of
2. Dr. Morton, in 1846, discovered the facts responsibility.* before unknown, that ether would prevent the pain of surgical operations, and that it might be given in Accordingly, in a note published with the article referred sufficient quantity to effect this purpose, without dan- to, is the following
sentence : -“Within the last few
days, ger to life. He first established these facts by nu; which it is stated, that, for three months previously, all merous operations on teeth, and afterwards induced apparatus had been laid aside,
and the sponge alone used the surgeons of the hospital to demonstrate its gen- for etherization, by Dr. Morton, of that city—the gentleeral applicability and importance in capital opera- man to whom, I believe, the profession and mankind are tions.
really and truly indebted for first reducing into practice 3d. Dr. Jackson appears to have had the belief, the object of annihilating pain in surgical operations.”
the production of insensibility, by ether inhalation, with that a power in ether to prevent pain in dental opera
* A few remarks upon the manner in which this intions would be discovered. He advised various per- quiry has been pursued, may not perhaps be inappropriate. sons to attempt the discovery. But neither they nor The committec considered, that, as Dr. Morton alone he took any measures to that end; and the world assisted in the early experiments at the hospital, they remained in entire ignorance of both the power and but, inasmuch as Dr. Gay's pamphlet had been for some
were not strictly called upon to mention Dr. Jackson ; safety of ether, until Dr. Morton made his experi- time before the world, and also Mr. Warren's reply, it ments.
seemed that the whole subject had been submitted by the 4th, The whole agency of Dr. Jackson in the mat- parties to the tribunal of the public, and that the public ter appears to consist only in his having made certain would reasonably expect from this institution such a narsuggestions, which led or aided Dr. Morton to make rative of the facts as might be prepared from these and
from other sources more especially within our reach. the discovery—a discovery which had for some time Both these pamphlets were therefore very carefully exambeen the object of his labors and researches.t ined and compared ; twenty-two individuals, most con
versant with the subject, consulted ; and the report sub* That such claims are really advanced by Dr. Jack- stantially prepared. The committee then deemed it son, is well known. He said indeed to one of the com- advisable to address a note to Dr. Jackson, informing him mittee, “I allow of no partnership in this matter. If that Dr. Gay's pamphlet had been considered by them as your report takes from me such a proportion of the sole containing a full statement of his claims; that if, howcredit of this discovery as amounts even to the paring of ever, he had any additional facts to communicate, the a finger nail, I shall entirely object to it."
committee would be happy to receive them. The result + The results otherwise arrived at by the committee was two personal interviews, besides one of three hours' have received the highest confirmation from Professor duration_(by express appointment) with Dr. Gay, in beSimpson, the discoverer of chloroform, who has trans- half of Dr. Jackson. Dr. Gay offered to prove certain milled to Dr. Morion a copy of his pamphlet, entitled, facts, having no connection with or relation to this discov"Account of a New Anästhetic Agent, as a substitute for ery, which the committee declined hearing. He also said Sulphuric Ether, in Surgery and Midwifery," with the he had other evidence of a strictly confidential character, following note written upon one of its blank pages :
which was also declined. He then proceeded to comMy Dear Sir,- I have much pleasure in offering, for ment upon the testimony contained in Mr. Warren's pamyour kind acceptance, the accompanying pamphlet. Since phlet. All his arguments and objections upon this point it was published, we have had various other operations have been fairly stated by the committee, from memoperformed here, equally successful. I have a note from randa taken at the time ; and the deliberate views of the Mr. Liston, telling me also of its perfect success in Lon- committee, in relation to these objections, have been also don. Its rapidity and depth are amazing.
stated. The committee, at this interview, wished to know "In the Monthly Journal of Medical Science for Sep- the worst that could be suggested as to the credibility of tember, I have a long article on etherization, vindicating these witnesses. Few remarks were therefore made to your claims over those of Jackson.
Dr. Gay, as 10 the sufficiency of his objections ; but they "Of course, the great thought is that of producing in- were noted as subjects for future investigation. The sensibility; and for that the world is, I think, indebted to committee may have said, "Well, putting this deposition
aside for this ground, what is your objection to the next you.
"I read a paper lately to our society, showing that it deposition ?" But it was, on the other hand, distinctly was recommended by Pliny, &c., in old times.
suggested to Dr. Gay, that two of these wilnesses were "With very great esteem for you, allow me to subscribe very favorably spoken of, and that the testimony of Whitmyself, Yours very faithfully,
man, whose character even Dr. Gay admitted to have "J. Y. SIMPSON."
been above suspicion, was obviously confirmatory of mat“Edinburgh, 19th Nov. 1847."
ters stated by the two witnesses referred to ; and that time when he practised medicine, he occasionally The letter also proves that Dr. Jacksoa had heard from Mr. Wightman (as well as from Mr. Metcalf, see extracted teeth for particular patients, and that in P. 23) facts which it seems difficult to reconcile with his one instance, a patient who could not summon cour(Dr. Jackson's) conviction, expressed so strongly to the age for the operation, asked him to apply something committee, that Dr. Morton was wholly ignorant of sul. phuric ether, down to the interview with him. Dr. Jack- of no consequence. Accordingly, in his later interview son, and his friend Mr. Peabody, seem, indeed, to have with Mr. Wightman, Dr. Jackson said, in effeci, "You been aware of the important bearing of Mr. Wightinan's may be about right in your dates ; but it is immalerial to testimony on this point. Therefore, in March, 1847, me, as I can substantiate my discovery as far back as they endeavored strenuously, but in vain, to satisfy him 1842.” Unfortunately, Dr. Jackson, in the specification that he was mistaken as to the date of his first interview accompanying the patent, had, under oath, disaroved any with Dr. Morton, about the gas-bags. It would seem discovery prior to that which he made jointly with Dr. that Dr. Jackson had not yet resorted to the hypothesis, Morton; and the committee have proved that what Dr. that he had made his discovery in 1842; since that, of Jackson knew about ether in 1842 had been published by course, rendered all these transactions with Dr. Morton | Pereira in 1839.
DR. MORTON'S MEMOIR TO THE ACADEMY OF | Eddy and R. H. Eddy, and is authorized by them AT PARIS,
BY M. to say that the facts which are within their knowlARAGO, IN THE AUTUMN OF 1847.
edge are correctly stated. The editor was unable,
owing to accidental circumstances, to read it to the [The editor has himself read this memoir to other surgeons of the hospital; but it has been Drs. Hayward, Townsend, and H. J. Bigelow, of examined by them, and the editor is assured that the hospital, to Dr. Gould, and Messrs. Caleb they are satisfied with the statement of all the
facts that came under their cognizance. even Whitman's testimony alone was sufficient to prove that Dr. Morton was striving to realize the idea of this The reader who has gone through the evidence discovery, and was therefore irreconcilable with Dr. and the report of the trustees, cannot fail to obJackson's exclusive claims.
The committee mentioned to Dr. Jackson, that they serve, in his course through this memoir, how had obtained some new testimony in favor of Dr. Morton, completely the statements of Dr. Morton therein (meaning the letters of Mr. Meicalf and of Dr. Dana ;) are sustained by the evidence, and by the opinion but, believing that the testimony in these letters was of a nature not to be rebutted, the committee did not feel of the trustees. In some important particulars he called upon to state the fact, that either of these iwo gen- is supported by evidence obtained by the trustees ilemen had been consulted. The committee felt them long after the memoir had been presented, of the selves perfectly free, like every one else, to form and to express an opinion upon a matter of universal interest existence of which Dr. Morton did not know when and importance, and which indeed seemed to fall natu, he prepared the document.] rally within their peculiar province, even though they had not the previous permission of Dr. Jackson. Their re- William T. Green Morton, of Boston, in the port had been unanimously accepted by the trustees, and United States of America, surgeon-dentist, respectpresented to and unanimously accepted by the corpora: fully asks the attention of the Academy of Scireceived from Dr. Gay, alleging that he supposed his ences to the subjoined memoir, intended to present objections to the testimony in Mr. Warren's pamphlet a history of the course pursued by him which rewere recognized by the committee as well founded, and sulted in the demonstration of the great truth that protesting against the course pursued by the trustees of the inhaling of the vapor of sulphuric ether, highly tenance to the attempt of Mr. Morton to rob Dr. Jackson rectified, will produce insensibility to pain, in opeof his sacred right to his own discovery.” Dr. Gay, in erations upon the human body. his vote, significantly adds, that“ Dr. Jackson has always, He intends that this memoir shall state such facts excepting in one unguarded moment, declined submitting only as illustrate the scientific character of the disthe parties, or self-constituted and forced upon him." covery, and shall not go into questions of personal He alleges that Dr. Jackson has much new evidence, controversy ; but as the manner in which, and the that the investigation of the committee must necessarily person by whom, this discovery was made, have have been partial, &c. This note of Dr. Gay was laid become matter of disputation, and as evidence on before the trustees, at a meeting held Feb. 6; but they these points has been brought to the attention of claim no judicial powers or functions. Dr. Jackson is the Academy in various ways, by other persons, he perfectly free to continue in his present determination of takes the liberty to subjoin, in an appendix, certain never submitting his exclusive claims to any human tri- evidence, taken for a different purpose, which he bunal, or he may hereafter submit them to one which he desires to place at the disposal of the Academy, to shall regard as more competent or impartial. If, by any be used by them in such manner as they shall see new evidence, he can establish these claims, he is siill at liberty so to do. The committee can only state, that fit, or not to be used at all, as their usage or discrethey have endeavored to prosecute their inquiries in a tion shall determine. fair, cautious, and thorough manner, and that they feel the utmost confidence in the soundness of the conclusions at which they have arrived ; and, conscious that no pro
In the summer of 1844, being in the practice of ceeding or neglect on their part has justified the remarks of Dr. Gay, they here take leave of this subject forever. dentistry, and desirous to improve myself in chem
The committee make the following remarks on Mr. ical and medical knowledge, I studied in the office Wightman's letter:-The date of Mr. Wightman's com- of Dr. Charles T. Jackson, of Boston, and in order ing to Boston is fixed beyond all doubt. The circum- to employ my time to the utmost advantage, I restances connected with this occasion have been verbally sided in his family. One day, in casual conversastated to the committee, and are of a nature rendering, tion upon my profession of dentistry, I spoke of the in their judgment, a mistake impossible. This letter, then, proves that, prior to Sept. 28, 1846, or more than operation of destroying the nerve of a tooth, and two days before his interview with Dr. Jackson, Dr. Mor: remarked that there was always doubt whether the ton called on Mr. Wightman, alluded to some intended tooth could be restored to usefulness, inasmuch as discovery of great importance, and inquired about bags, the arsenic produced an irritation, and left a soresuitable for holding sulphuric ether. probable that it was owing only to a casual suggestion ness often permanent. Dr. Jackson said, in a then made, that Dr. Jackson, rather than some other humorous manner, that I must try some of his learied chemist, was subsequently consulted by Dr. Mor- tooth-ache drops, and proceeded to tell me that at a ton.
to alleviate the pain. He applied ether, and with there I procured ether from the druggist's, and success, for a few days afterwards a friend of this made experiments upon birds and other animals, patient called to obtain some of the “tooth-ache endeavoring to get them under the effect of inhadrops," as he called them; but Dr. Jackson, not lation from it. These experiments produced no wishing to be troubled with dental business, told satisfactory result, and they being known among him he had none. Dr. Jackson then added, that my friends, I was mortified and vexed, and bottled as this ether might be applied with advantage to up the subjects, where they remain to this day. sensitive teeth, he would send me some. The con- In the autumn I returned to Boston, and finding versation then turned upon the effect of ether upon that my business, owing to its interruption, rethe system, and he told me how the students at quired my constant attention, I was not able to purCambridge used to inhale sulphuric ether from their sue the investigation at that time. handkerchiefs, and that it intoxicated them, making In the course of the winter (1844–5) Dr. Horace them reel and stagger. He gave no further inti- Wells, of Hartford, Conn., a dentist, and formerly mation of the effect of ether, or of the manner of my partner, came to Boston, and desired me to aid applying it. I may add that Dr. Jackson has con- him in procuring an opportunity to administer the firmed my account of this conversation, in his own nitrous oxide gas, which he said he believed would statement to Dr. Gould.
destroy or greatly alleviate pain under surgical opIn a few days after this conversation, Dr. Jack- erations. I readily consented, and introduced him son sent me a bottle of chloric ether, highly recti- to Dr. George Hayward, an eminent surgeon, who fied, as he had offered. At the same time he sent offered to permit the experiment, but as the earliest a bottle to two other dentists of high respectability operation was not to be performed under two or three in Boston. I made an experiment with this ether days, we did not wait for it, but went to Dr. Warin destroying the sensibility of a valuable tooth of ren, whom we found engaged with his class. He a patient, Miss by direct application, telling told us that his students were preparing to inhale it her that the operation would be slow. I was that evening, for sport, and offered to announce the obliged to apply it several times, but in the end the proposal to them, and ask them to meet us at the sensibility seemed to be removed, and the tooth is college. In the evening Dr. Wells and myself now, to my knowledge, in a useful condition.* went to the hall, and I took my instruments. Dr.
About this time the wife and aunt of Dr. Jack- Wells administered the gas, and extracted a tooth, son were under my treatment for dental purposes, but the patient screamed from pain, and the spectaand it was necessary to extract teeth in each case, tors laughed and hissed. The meeting broke up, the operation being painful and the ladies showing and we were looked upon as having made ourselves an unusual degree of sensitiveness. The last very ridiculous. I saw nothing more of Dr. Wells, named lady, in particular, before the extracting of but he left my instruments at my office very early each tooth, remained several hours in the operating the next morning, and went directly home. In chair, unable to summon courage to endure the July, being again in Connecticut, I called on Dr. operation, and hegging to be mesmerized, or that I Wells, and we spent some time in adjusting our would give her something to make her insensible. former partnership accounts. He had then given Dr. Jackson was present and made efforts to en- up dentistry, and was engaged in conducting an courage the lady, but did not suggest any mode of exhibition of birds, which he said insured him producing insensibility. His suggestions had not better health. I went with him to the office of Dr. gone beyond the direct application of ether, in the Riggs, where I spoke of the gas, and asked them same manner that laudanum and other narcotics have to give some to me; but Dr. Wells gave me to always been applied to sensitive teeth.
understand that he had abandoned the experiment, The successful application I had made of the thinking it could have no practical value. ether in destroying the sensibility of a tooth, to- In the autumn of 1845, I returned to my busigether with what Dr. Jackson told me of its ness, which had now become almost exclusively effects when inhaled by the students at college, mechanical dentistry, or plate work, requiring me awakened my attention, and having free access to often to extract a great number of teeth at a time. Dr. Jackson's books, I began to read on the subject Many of my patients suffered extremely, and some of its effects upon the animal system. I became were obliged, as is the experience of every dentist, satisfied that there was nothing new or particularly to postpone or abandon the supplying full seis of dangerous in the inhaling of ether, that it had teeth. I had, therefore, everything to call my atlong been the toy of professors and students, known tention to the destroying or mitigating of pain under as a powerful anti-spasmodic, anodyne and narcotic, these operations, and great motive to induce me to capable of intoxicating and stupefying, when taken follow up the subject. Finding that when closed in sufficient quantity. I found that even the appa- up in a hollow tooth, and sealed with wax, eller ratus for inhaling it was described in some treatises, would gradually destroy the sensibility of the part, but in most cases it was described as inhaled from I reasoned that perhaps when inhaled it mighi dea saturated sponge or handkerchief. Having some stroy or greatly alleviate sensibility to pain generally. of the ether left which Dr. Jackson had sent me, I In the spring of 1846, Thomas R. Spear came inhaled it from a handkerchief, but there was not to study with me, and hearing me converse upon enough to produce a greater effect than exhilara- | the subject, he said he had inhaled ether at the tion followed by headache.
Lexington Academy, where he was educated, and While investigating this subject I was taken described to me its effects. This increased my inquite ill. and it being the middle of summer, I was terest in the subject, and I determined, as soon as advised by my physician to go into the country. I the pressure of the spring business was over, to took with me from Dr. Jackson's library, and ob- devote myself to it. In the mean time I ried an tained in other ways, several books treating on this experiment upon a water spaniel, inserting his head and other subjects. I spent two months at the res- in a jar having sulphuric ether at the bottom. This idence of my father-in-law, in Connecticut. While was done in the presence of two persons, at my , * See Dr. Bemis' letter, ante, p. 539. The notes are by house in West Needham, where I reside during the the editor, and are not in the original memoir.) summer months. After breathing the vapor for some time, the dog completely wilted down in my much difference in the qualities of ether, that in so hands. I then removed the jar. In about three min-1 delicate a matter there would be great difficulty in utes he aroused, yelled loudly, and sprung some ten bringing about any generally useful and reliable feet, into a pond of water.
results. Immediately after this experiment, I waited on Thinking that a surer effect might be produced Dr. Granville G. Hayden, a young dentist, told him by inhaling the ether through some apparatus; I my purpose, and made an agreement with him to called repeatedly on Mr. Wightman, a philosophical come to my office and take charge of my business, instrument-maker, for the purpose of procuring or that I might devote myself more exclusively to this contriving, an apparatus. While examining his subject. The agreement was drawn by R. H. bags for inhaling nitrous oxide gas, the thought Dana, Jr., Esq., to whose letter in the appendix I struck me that I could put the eiher into one of take the liberty to refer the Academy in this connec- these, and by making an opening to be closed by a tion. * As soon as Dr. Hayden became acquainted valve, for the admission of atmospheric air, could with my business, I began to devote myself to my convert it into an inhaling apparatus. Upon second experiments.f I inhaled some chloric ether and thought I had an impression that ether would dismorphine, the effect of which was drowsiness fol- solve India rubber, and put the question to Mr. lowed by lassitude and headache.
Wightman. He thought it would. I then put the Early in August I asked Dr. Hayden to procure same question as to oil silk. He said he did not me a four-ounce phial of sulphuric ether from Mr. know, but advised me to consult a chemist, and Burnett, a druggist much relied upon by chemists. named Dr. Jackson.* I took from Mr. Wightman a He did so, and I tried to induce him to take it. As glass tunnel, purchased an India rubber bag on my he declined, I took half of it into the country to try way, and returned to my office. I then sent Leavitt again upon my dog. Just as I had got it ready, to Dr. Gay, a chemist, to ask the simple question the dog sprang and threw over the jar. I felt vexed, whether ether would dissolve India rubber. He and resolved to take it myself, and did so, the next returned, saying that Dr. Gay was not in. In the day, at my office. I inhaled from my handkerchief mean time I became satisfied that the bottle and all the ether that was left, but was not completely glass I had were not large enough for my purposes, lost, yet thought myself so far insensible that I be- and not wishing to go to unnecessary expense, 1 lieved that a tooth could have been drawn with but said to Dr. Hayden that I would borrow a gas-bag little pain or consciousness. I was unwilling to from Dr. Jackson's laboratory. He then suggested send to Burnett's again for the same article, he be- to me to ascertain from Dr. Jackson something as ing a near neighbor, and his young men well ac- to the different qualities and preparations of ether, quainted with mine, lest the knowledge of my with which he said chemists were always familiar. experiments should get abroad. I accordingly sent I approved of the suggestion, but feared Dr. Jacka student, William P. Leavitt, to druggists in a son might guess what I was experimenting upon, different part of the city, Brewers, Stevens and Co., and forestall me. I went to Dr. Jackson's, therea firm in excellent standing, with directions to get fore, to procure a gas-bag, also with the intention sulphuric ether. After some persuasion I induced of ascertaining something more accurately as to the Spear, who had taken it at school, to inhale it. He different preparations of ether, if I should find I did so, and became so far insensible as to drop the could do so without setting him upon the same handkerchief, and seemed very drowsy and torpid. I track of experiment with myself. I am aware that As this passed off he became excited and furious, by this admission I may show myself not to have so that he had to be held down in the chair; but been possessed by the most disinterested spirit of this subsided, and on coming to he expressed him- philosophic enthusiasm, clear of all regard for perself delighted with his sensations. Leavitt then sonal rights or benefits; but it is enough for me to took it, with much the same effect. I was much say that I felt I had made sacrifices and run risks discouraged by these attempts. The effects pro- for this object, that I believed myself to be close duced were not such as I sought for, nor were the upon it, yet where another, with better opportuniyoung men affected in the same manner that I had ties for experimenting, availing himself of my hints been, and as I observed the dog to be. They were and labors, might take the prize from my grasp. much more excited and less insensible. Yet I can- I asked Dr. Jackson for his gas-bag. He told not help remarking, in this connection, that had this me it was in his house. I went for it, and returned sulphuric ether been pure and highly rectified, I through the laboratory. He said, in a laughing should have demonstrated its effects then, instead manner, “Well, Doctor, you seem to be all of at the subsequent period in September. This equipped, minus the gas. I replied, in the same ether has since been analyzed, as appears by the manner, that perhaps there would be no need of affidavits in the appendix, and found to contain a having any gas, if the person who took it could large proportion of alcohol, sulphur acids, and other only be made to believe there was gas in it, and impurities.
alluded to the story of the man who died from This experiment was early in August ; and it being made to believe that he was bleeding to being hot weather, and I being somewhat out of death, there being in fact nothing but water trickled health, I went into the country, and abandoned the upon his leg; but I had no intention whatever of experiments until the middle of September. With trying such a trick. He smiled and said that was the autumn and the restoration of health, my ambi- a good story, but added, in a graver manner, that I tion led me to resume my experiments; and I men- had better not attempt such an experiment, lest I tioned to Dr. Hayden that I feared there was so should be set down as a greater humbug than
Wells was with his nitrous oxide gas. Seeing [* See letters of R. H. Dana, Esq., and F. Dana, M.D., that here was an opportunity to open the subject, ante, p. 536; and Dr. Hayden's aftidavit, p. 535. [+ See Mr. Metcalf's letter, p. 533, and the statement
I said, in as careless a manner as I could asof Whitman as to Dr. M.'s going to Burnett's, at top of sume, why cannot I give the ether gas? He said
that I could do so, and spoke again of the students [ See Spear's affidavit, p. 534.]
taking it at Cambridge. He said the patient would fs See Leavitt's affidavit, p. 534.) til See evidence on p. 536.]
[* See Mr. Wightman's letter, p. 537.]
be dull and stupefied, that I could do what I pleased render the nerve insensible. I learned from Dr. with him, that he would not be able to help him- Jackson, also, in 1844, the effect of ether when inself.* Finding the subject open, I made the inqui- haled by the students at college, which was corries I wished to as to the different kinds and prepar- roborated by Spear's account, and by what I read. ations of ether. He told me something about the I knew of Dr. Wells' attempt to apply nitrous preparations, and thinking that if he had any it oxide gas for destroying pain under surgical operawould be of the purest kind, I asked him to let me tions. I had great motives to destroy or alleviate see his. He did so, but remarked that it had been pain under my operations, and endeavored to prostanding for some time, and told me that I could duce such a result by means of inhaling ether, get some highly rectified at Burnett's. As I was inferring that if it would render a nerve insensible, passing out, Dr. Jackson followed me to the door, directly applied, it might, when inhaled, destroy or and told me that he could recommend something greatly alleviate sensibility to pain generally. Had better than the gas-bag, to administer the ether the ether that I tried on the 5th August been pure, with, and gave me a flask with a glass tube in- I should have made the demonstration then. I furserted in it.
ther acknowledge that I was subsequently indebted I procured the ether from Burnett's, and taking to Dr. Jackson for valuable information as to the the tube and flask, shut myself up in my room, kinds and preparations of ether, and for the recseated in the operating chair, and commenced in- ommendation of the highly rectified from Burhaling. I found the ether so strong that it partially nett's as the most safe and efficient. But my oblisuffocated me, but produced a decided effect. Igation to him hath this extent, no further. All that then saturated my handkerchief and inhaled it from he communicated to me I could have got from other ihat. I looked at my watch and soon lost con- well informed chemists, or from some books. He sciousness. As I recovered, I felt a numbness in did not put me upon the experiments ; and when my limbs with a sensation like nightmare, and he recommended the highly rectified sulphuric would have given the world for some one to come ether, the effect he anticipated was only that stupeand arouse me. I thought for a moment I should faction which was not unknown, and he did not indie in that state, and that the world would only timate in any degree a suspicion of that insensibility pity or ridicule my folly. At length I felt a slight to pain which was demonstrated, and astonished the tingling of the blood in the end of my third finger, scientific world. and made an effort to touch it with my thumb, but As soon as the man whose tooth I extracted left without success. At a second effort, I touched it, my office, I consulted Dr. Hayden as to the best but there seemed to be no sensation. I gradually inode of bringing out the discovery. We agreed raised my arm and pinched my thigh, but I could it was best to announce it to the surgeons of the see that sensation was imperfect. I attempted to hospital ;* but as some time would elapse before an rise from my chair, but fell back. Gradually I re- operation, I thought it best to procure some assurgained power over my limbs and full consciousness. ance which would induce my patients to take it. I immediately looked at my watch, and found that I I therefore called upon the man who had taken it, had been insensible between seven and eight minutes. and found him perfectly well. Thence I went to
Delighted with the success of this experiment, I Dr. Jackson, told him what I had done, and asked immediately announced the result to the persons him to give me a certificate that it was harmless in employed in my establishment, and waited impa- its effects. This he positively refused to do. I then tiently for some one upon whom I could make a told him I should go to the principal surgeons and fuller trial. Toward evening, a man, residing in have the question thoroughly tried. I then called on Boston, whose certificate is in the appendix, came Dr. Warren, who promised me an early opportunity in, suffering great pain and wishing to have a tooth to try the experiment, and soon after I received the extracted. He was afraid of the operation and invitation inserted in the appendix. asked if he could be mesmerized. I told him I had In the mean time, I made several additional exsomething better, and saturating my handkerchief, periments in my office, with various success. I adgave it to him to inhale. He became unconscious ministered it to a boy, but it produced no other effect almost immediately. It was dark, and Dr. Hay- than sickness, with vomiting, and the boy was taken den held the lamp, while I extracted a firmly rooted home in a coach, and pronounced by a physician to bicuspid tooth. There was not much alteration in be poisoned. His friends were excited, and threatthe pulse, and no relaxation of the muscles. He ened proceedings against me. A notice of my sucrecovered in a minute, and knew nothing of what cessful experiment having, without my knowledge, had been done to him. He remained for some time got into the papers ; several persons called, wishing talking about the experiment, and I took from him a to have it administered. I gave it to a lady, but it certificate. This was on the 30th of Sept., 1846. produced no other effect than drowsiness, and when This I consider to be the first demonstration of this breathed through the apparatus named by Dr. Jacknew fact in science. I have heard of no one who son, it produced suffocation. I was obliged to abancan prove an earlier demonstration. If any one don this mode, and obtaining from Mr. Wightman a can do so, I yield to him the point of priority in conical glass tube, I inserted a saturated sponge in time.
the larger end, and she breathed through that. In I will make a single remark upon the subject of this way she seemed to be in an unnatural state, my interview with Dr. Jackson. It is not neces- but continued talking, and refused to have the tooth sary to go into the question of the origin of all extracted. I made her some trifling offer, to which ideas. I am ready to acknowledge my indebted- she assented, and I drew the tooth, without any ness to men and to books for all my information indication of pain on her part, not a muscle moving: upon this subject. I nave got here a little and there Her pulse was at 90, her face much flushed, and a little. I learned from Dr. Jackson, in 1844, the after coming to, she remained a long time exceseffect of ether directly applied to a sensitive tooth, sively drowsy. From this experiment, I became and proved, by experiment, that it would gradually satisfied of what is now well proved, that conscious
*[See Mr. M'Intire's statement, p. 540.)
(* See Dr. Hayden's affidavit, p. 536.]