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HELD IN THE CITY OF CHICAGO, JUNE 5, 6, 7 & 8, 1877..
TUESDAY, JUNE 5.-FIRST DAY.
The Association met in Farwell Hall, and was called to order at 11 A. M., by Dr. J. Marion Sims, the retiring President, who, in fitting words, thanked the Association for the honors it had conferred upon him, paid a flattering compliment to the founder of the Association, Dr. N. S. Davis, of Chicago, and, with a glowing reference to the labors of Dr. H. I. Bowditch, of Boston, introduced him as the incoming President.
In response to this pleasant introduction, Dr. Bowditch expressed his pleasure and congratulations to the Association, upon its meeting in the Queen City of the West, under such propitious circumstances; and expressed the hope that all would retire from the meeting, feeling that they possessed good will toward all men, and that they had learned something which might be utilized for the benefit of suffering humanity, and which could be carried with them till they were transferred from this sphere of human activity.
Prayer was then offered by the Rev. William L. Harris, D. D., LL. D., who invoked the blessing of God upon the Association, and its annual meetings.
Upon a call from the President, Dr. N. S. Davis, chairman of the Committee of Arrangements, delivered the address of welcome on the part of the profession in Chicago; referring in a happy manner to the evidences of characteristic enterprise in the city which gave them greeting. He briefly mentioned the institutions which the delegates might desire to visit, as well as the receptions of a social nature to which they were bidden. A touching reference was made to the preliminary meeting, held thirty-one years ago in the city of New York, when organization was first effected. In that meeting were seventy-six voters, of which one alone was then in attendance in Chicago, Dr. W. T. Atlee, of Philadelphia. Nearly all the original number had passed to their final reward. Of the twenty-eight presidents, sixteen had found a last rest from their labors. Reference was made to the death of Dr. Henry F. Askew, of Delaware, an ex-president of the Association.
In closing Dr. Davis again assured his hearers of a most general and cordial welcome from the people of Chicago, and said he hoped they would carry on the work of their profession even more vigorously, more nobly, and more successfully than they had in the past, and that these annual greetings would continue while the country endured, and as long as time should last. [Applause.]
Dr. Norman Bridge, on the part of the Committee of Registration, read the list of delegates whose credentials had been approved, and whose namnes had been duly registered.
The following gentlemen were elected members by invitation: D. F. Boughton, of Mendota, Wis.; W. H. Bunker, of Cincinnati; J. A. Reed, Dixmont, Pa.; D. Leavitt, and Eichberger, of Terre Haute.
The following gentlemen were elected permanent members: Drs. J. K. Bartlett and E. W. Cross, of Minnesota; Drs. D. A. K. Steele, S. A. McWilliams, John E. Owens, Charles T. Parkes, E. O. F. Roler, Charles L. Rutter, D. T. Nelson, J. S. Knox, W. E. Quine, W. S. Nevins, M. P. Hatfield, Thomas Bevan, E. W. Sawyer, and L. H. Montgomery, all of Chicago, and S. M. Hamilton, of Monmouth, Ill.
The President invited the retiring President, and also the delegates from the Canadas, to take a seat upon the platform.
PRESIDENT'S ADDRESS. Dr. Bowditch then delivered the President's annual address, of which the following is a brief abstract:
In accordance with precedent, he desired to touch upon topics tending to improve the practical working of the Association, and would therefore make suggestions on the past, the present and the future.
Prior to 1847, the medical profession of the country, as a united body, did not exist; local societies having been formed here and there, but in consequence of political differences, and the difficulty of communication, medical men were alienated rather than drawn together. The result of the union accomplished, has been made evident in the establishment of valuable friendships, which would otherwise have never been made, in the dropping of idiosyncrasies, and in the rapid and easy coalesence of medical men, immediately after the civil war.
The speaker called attention to the enthusiasm prevalent at the earlier meetings, and deprecated the use of wine, which at times used to flow freely at the public and private gatherings.
Respecting the present status of the Association, the speaker felt sure that the meetings had lost reputation in the Eastern and Middle States—there was a lack of co-operation of the entire profession-prominent Western and Southern men absented themselves—many young men and some scoffing elders considered the body a hindrance to the progress of scientific medicine. Some of the reasons for this were, violent discussions of points of order, or ethics; intemperance, disappointment of these having a high standard of the profession; the cacoethes scribendi aut loquendi of some individu