Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Letter of the Day: August 11

Curatorial Records: Numbered Correspondence 99


August 11, 1894


Dr. Wm. C. Woodward,

Health Officer, District of Columbia,

Washington, D.C.




I beg to report that a careful bacteriological examination has been made in the Laboratory of this Museum of a sample of water received on Monday, August 6th, from the well corner of Sixth and O Streets, N.W.


All plates made from this water contain numerous colonies of faecal bacteria. Two of the organisms have been carefully worked out, and one is identified as the Bacillus Coli Communis, -- the other as Lactia Aerogenes.


As the result of the bacteriological examination I am of the opinion that this water is of bad quality.


It is probable that a further report will be submitted concerning this water during the coming week.


Very respectfully,


Walter Reed

Major and Surgeon, U. S. Army,

Curator Army Medical Museum.

1 comment:

Brian Spatola said...

Some trivia: Woodward was Coroner of DC in 1893 and Health Officer of DC from 1894 to 1918, then Health Commissioner of Boston from 1918 to 1922. He was head of the Bureau of Legal Medicine and Legislation of the AMA from 1922 until 1940.

Here is his Obit in JAMA: