Imagens das páginas

approximate measure the extent to which the public was defrauded in the purchase of such articles. The samples were purchased in different towns and in each of the counties; 57 per cent. of the milk samples were found below the legal standard of 12 per cent. total milk solids, and 24 per cent. of fats; 34 per cent. of the samples contained more than 13 per cent. of total milk solids, and nearly 10 per cent. contained 15 per cent. of total milk solids.

Of the samples of molasses, purchased as of best quality and at full prices, 12 per cent. only, or one in every eight, was found to be true molasses.

Of the samples of vinegar, more than one-balf were below the standard required by law; 62 per cent. was cider vinegar and 38 per Cent, was manufactured vinegar.

One hundred and twenty-nine samples were analyzed. An account in fuller detail will be given in the annual report of the Board.

The Secretary stated that in those States where regular inspections and analyses have been continued for three or four years, of samples taken at random, here, there and everywhere, and at any time, the proportion of fraudulent samples of all kinds of food materials had very largely decreased.

In the Cattle Commission department no important infectious disease was found prevalent among domestic animals except glandera in horses. A very large number of horses were inspected during the quarter, with the result of finding 38 having confirmed glanders, all of which were destroyed.

The report was received and discussed at considerable length, and the measures taken and work performed were approved.

A general summary of the work of the Secretary and the results of the proceedings of the Board for 1890 were also given.

Various sanitary questions and work connected therewith were discussed in regard to their legal relations, the possibilities of the accomplishment of projected measures, and the probabilities of large beneficial results.

At the second quarterly meeting, held on Thursday, April 2d, 1891, after some general discussion of savitary questions, the Secretary reported work performed during the preceding quarter of the year.

Progress was reported in the enumeration, arrangement and classification of the vital statistics of the State for 1890; the principal facts of the returns in relation to nearly 4,000 births, 2,800 marriages and 6,000 deaths had been analyzed and collated in primary tables. Returns had not been received from all the towns, leaving by estimate, probably, 4,400 births, 400 marriages and 1,000 deaths yet to be heard from.

The Registration Report for 1889 had been issued from the press early in January and the copies distributed.

In the Cattle Commission department 266 hack, market, express and team horses had been inspected during the quarter. Thirty-six horses had been found glandered and were destroyed.

In the office, the Monthly Bulletin had been regularly issued with the usual data of meteorology and mortality, and analyses of reports of medical correspondents in respect to the prevalence of diseases.

Two hundred and forty-six letters had been written; 7,500 blanks had been supplied to different officials and correspondents for various kinds of returns.

The Secretary gave an account of legislation or lack of legislation in relation to the adulteration of food.

It was moved and voted that the Secretary be authorized to procure a type writing machine when in his judgment such machine would be of evident advantage in his work.

Dr. A. G. Sprague and C. H. Fisher were appointed delegates to the Conference of State and Provincial Boards of Health to be held in Washington, D. C., May 2-5, 1891.

At the third quarterly and also the annual meeting, held on Thursday, July 2, 1891, a nearly full complement of the members being present, various sanitary questions were quite largely considered.

The Secretary then gave an account of work during the previous quarter.

The facts connected with the publication of the Monthly Bulletin were stated, with suggestions and queries for the consideration of the Board.

The analysis of the various returns for the Annual Report of the Board from the medical correspondents, health officers, town clerks and others had been finished, with the addition of several papers having relation to the duties of the Board, and various Tables in relation to the prevalence of certain diseases and meteorological conditions.

The whole of the matter had been in the printer's hands several weeks.

The fundamental Tables of the Report upon the Registration of Births, Marriages and Deaths in Rhode Island, in 1890, had been compiled to the number of fourteen, and had been in the printer's hands over four weeks, but no proofs of the printing had been received.

In the Cattle Commission department 594 horses had been inspected and 19 found glandered and destroyed. Tuberculosis had been found in two herds of cattle.

In the office work, aside from the report previously made for the preceding quarter, 305 letters had been written, 38 conferences held in relation to ventilation, drainage and nuisances, 8 examinations of premises, and the usual oversight of supply of blanks for the various returns of physicians, town clerks, undertakers, clergymen, etc.

Considerable discussion was given to questions of river and other water pollutions, and the duties connected with the Cattle Commission. S. M. Gray and the Secretary were appointed to draft resolutions or acts in relation thereto, for action thereon by the General Assembly.

In the health department, the Secretary reported that no epidemic had occurred during the quarter except at Valley Falls, from use of polluted water.

The following motions were made and passed: That the Secretary be and he is hereby authorized to make such sanitary inspections of State institutions, public buildings, compact villages and other premises as in bis judgment may seem desirable, and his actual expenses in such work shall be allowed by the Board.

That the expenses of the Secretary while engaged in the work of receiving complete returns of facts connected with the events of births, marriages and deaths from town clerks and undertakers shall be allowed by the Board.

The Board then elected the following officers for the ensuing year:

For Chairman-Albert G. Sprague, M. D., Warwick.
For Secretary-Charles H. Fisher, M. D., Providence.

The fourth quarterly meeting was held on Thursday, October 15, 1891, by adjournment from October 1st, a quorum not appearing on

that day.

After the disposal of several matters of business by the Board, the Secretary made his report of work during the preceding quarter.

Sixteen nuisances, public and private, regarded as dangerous to health had been investigated and abated, eighteen consultations in relation to premises suspected of being unsanitary had been held at the office.

An account of the personal inspection of over one thousand horses during the quarter was given, with the result of finding but sixteen affected with glanders, as against fifty-two in the corresponding months in 1890.

Two hundred and forty-two letters had been written during the quarter.

Progress in the printing of the Registration Report for 1890 was reported to the number of 132 pages and 35 Tables.

The distribution of the various circulars, giving directions how to prevent and restrict contagious and infectious diseases, had been made in different localities as occasion seemed to demand.

An account was given of a visit, with Engineer S. M. Gray, to the Providence Cremation Works for the rendering of animal matter and destruction of garbage found in swill and other wastes.

The proceedings of the General Assembly in regard to bills drawn by the Secretary and introduced at the July Session, were reported. They had relation to the duties of the Cattle Commission, and the pollution of potable waters, especially as derived from rivers.

Matters in relation to the analyses of milk, water and food materials were discussed and the Secretary was authorized to procure such analyses as circumstances seemed to require.

S. M. Gray and C. H. Fisher were appointed a committee to comply with the request of the East Providence Water Works Commission, for an examination of the water of the Ten Mile river at Hunt's mills, and the proposed location of water works plant. Adjourned sine die.

In the subsequent pages of this report, there may be found accounts of the proceedings, more or less in detail, in regard to the subjects referred to comunittees for action thereon, or left with the Secretary for the same purpose.


An account of the varied work in the office was given at considerable length in the last preceding report of the Board, as to the direction, details and lines of such work.

It will be unnecessary to repeat the statements then made, farther than to add, to what was given as the work performed as Secretary and Health Commissioner, a reference to those duties appertaining to the office of State Registrar.

Those are the monthly and yearly collection of returns of births, marriages and deaths, comprising about 25,000 individual returns, each with from eight to ten different items of fact connected therewith, more than 250,000 in all, which receive personal examination, and for verification of which, more or less correspondence is required and not infrequently personal visitation. The oversight of the enumeration for the annual Registration Report of these items of fact and correction of errors, the preparation of comparative tables, the context of comment and explanation of upwards of ninety tables, requiring the noting of about 1,500,000 figures in the whole preparation, the oversight of printing, proof reading, binding and distribution, the supply of blanks of the various kinds to physicians, clergymen, town clerks, undertakers and others, comprise a large part of the work in that official department.


The publication of the Monthly Bulletin was continued to July and was then discontinued, whether temporarily or as a finality remained to be determined by circumstances. The Secretary was in doubt as to the good it had accomplished in the communities and especially among the teachers in the public schools.

After the suspension of publication, many letters, and personal expressions of regret therefor, came froin various quarters and froin persons engaged in various occupations.

In order to ascertain to what extent the Monthly had probably been of practical value to the teachers and through them to the general population in the State, the following circular was sent to all the superintendents of the public schools:


The Monthly Bulletin has, as you are aware, been sent gratuitously to the public school teachers of the State during the last three years. The object has been to disseminate practical sanitary knowledge in the State in as nearly an equable distribution as possible. The school-rooms are the points most nearly representing the population, and from which knowledge of practical benefit to the citizen and the State, should emanate and radiate. The Monthly was placed at such points with the hope that the fundamental principles of hygiene might there find hearty acceptance and be of practical usefulness. The editor is uncertain as to the amount of benefit which may have been the results of such distribu. tion. He should not give his time to the extra labor, nor should the State be put to the extra expense, unless the public good derived therefrom be commen.

« AnteriorContinuar »