Friday, October 1, 2010
Surgeon General’s Office,
U.S. Army Medical Museum and Library,
Corner 7th and B Streets, S.W.,
Washington, D.C., October 1, 1894,
Dr. A. Clifford Mercer,
324 Montgomery St.,
I have just returned from Europe and find your note of September 23rd on my table, for which I am much obliged.
I know Mr. Crisp’s collection very well, and have received much valuable aid from Mr. Mayall, the gentleman who aided him largely in making that collection. I wish it were possible to obtain it for the Army Medical Museum, to which it would be a splendid addition. But it is out of the question to think of purchasing it, as your annual appropriation for all purposes is only $5000. At all events, however, it can do no harm to make some inquiries about the matter, and I will at once proceed to do this through some friends in London.
Again thanking you for your note, I remain,
Yours very sincerely,
(Sgd) John S. Billings
Lt. Colonel and Deputy Surgeon General, U.S.A.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
Curatorial Records: Numbered Correspondence 199
324 Montgomery St.
Sept. 23. 1894
John S. Billings M.D.
Incidentally I learned while in London recently that the famous historical collections of microscopes collected by Mr. Crisp at a cost of about L20000, had been offered for sale for L10000. I at once through of the Army Medical Museum. For a short time this collection can be had whole. Presently, I understand, if not sold as a whole, it will be broken up for sale in parts to suit small purchasers. I have been informed, perhaps somewhat privately, that Mr. Crisp intended to present this collection to the Royal Microscopical Society, had the Government given that society permanent rooms in Burlington House. The society would have had no rent to pay and the collection would have belonged essentially to the Government. I am told Mr. Crisp has been so disappointed in the Government, in its want of hospitality – not giving the society rooms – that he probably would take delight in writing a stinging letter to the Authorities pointing to the collection in the hands of a foreign government as the result of Burlington House not being offered as a home to the R.M. Society.
Further information can be had from Mr. C. Lees Curties with Chas. Baker, optician, 244 High Holborn, London, S.W. England.
A. Clifford Mercer, Dr.
P.S. The writer was much interested in the photomicroscopic work of Dr. Woodward had has been a worker in the same line for 18 years, has visited the Army Museum, has met you personally (in Washington, 1885, at meeting of Am. Public Health Association)
Monday, July 5, 2010
July 5 1894
I notice in the British Medical Journal of June 23rd (No. 1747, p. 1368), a description of a new basin for mounting and embedding in plaster-of-Paris specimen dissections of the human body. The basins are made by Messrs Powell, of Temple Gate Pottery, Bristol, 10 inches in diameter, and 4 inches deep, of two patterns, as shown in the illustrations in the article above referred to. Will you kindly inquire of the Messrs Powell at what price they will furnish for this Museum a dozen of each of the above basins, and whether they have other sizes.
I would also like to have you inquire of Mr. Claude-Henry, Brandon Terrace, Edinburgh, if, and at what price, he will furnish a sufficient quantity of cement for the sealing of the two dozen basins, the cement to be of the same quality as that furnished by him to Professors Fawcett and Cathcart.
I shall be in London in the early part of August, and shall be pleased to receive the above information at that time.
Deputy Surgeon General, U.S.A.
Director Army Medical Museum and Library
Messrs Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner & Co.
London, W.C., England