Stanford University School of Medicine and the Predecessor Schools: An Historical Perspective
Part III. Founding of First Medical School and Successions 1858-

Chapter 23. Educational Reform at Medical College of the Pacific 1872-1882

The foregoing summary of the disappointing national effort to reform medical education nationally will serve as background for the following account of the evolution of medical standards at the Medical College of the Pacific.

Under the policy adopted originally by Elias Cooper et al when the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific was founded in 1859, responsibility for taking the minutes at Faculty meetings was assigned to the Dean. In the early days, when Dean Cole kept the minutes, they were brief, often scarcely legible, and frequently on mere scraps of paper. As a result, information regarding Faculty deliberations and curricular matters during his era is scanty. In contrast, the minutes beginning in 1870, written in the fine hand of young Dean Henry Gibbons, Jr., are clear and concise. He meticulously recorded in laconic style an impressive succession of astute actions that portray the Cooper loyalists who revived the school in 1870 as experienced and committed professionals.

Graduation Requirements at Medical College of the Pacific in 1872

The Annual Session for 1872, extending over the five months' period from June 3rd to November 3rd, was the first Session of the newly established Medical College of the Pacific (MCP). The only major change in the requirements for graduation in the Cooper schools between 1859 and 1872 was an increase in the duration of the Annual Course of Medical Lectures from four months to five months, beginning with the Session for 1870. Otherwise the following requirements for graduation in 1872 were the same as when the school opened in 1859:[1][2]

  • The candidate must be 21 years of age.
  • Must have attended two identical Annual Courses of Medical Lectures, each of five months' duration, one of which must have been delivered in this institution.
  • Must have studied Medicine for three years (the terms of the Lectures included) under the direction of a respectable practitioner, i. e., serve an Apprenticeship.
  • Must write a Medical Thesis and pass examinations.

Annual Lecture Course at MCP in 1872

Although requirements for graduation had changed little since 1859, the range of subjects taught in the Annual Course of Lectures was increased significantly upon revival of the school in 1870. Thereafter, the Lectures included new subjects related to the developing medical sciences and clinical specialties. This important trend is illustrated by the following list of subjects taught in 1872:[3]

Old Subjects:

  • Principles and Practice of Medicine
  • Clinical Medicine and Diagnosis
  • Surgery and Surgical Anatomy
  • Clinical and Operative Surgery
  • Pathology (with practical illustrations)
  • Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children
  • Clinical Ophthalmology and Otology
  • Materia Medica and Therapeutics
  • Hygiene and Insanity
  • Physical Diagnosis (Auscultation, Percussion, etc.)

New (Additional) Subjects:

  • Histology and Diseases of the Nervous System
  • Descriptive and Microscopic Anatomy
  • Theoretical and Practical Physiology
  • Ophthalmology and Otology;
  • Inorganic and Organic Chemistry
  • Analytical Chemistry and Toxicology;

The Annual Lecture Course was now beginning to reflect the contributions of Pasteur, Lister, Koch and other European investigators, to whom we have previously referred. Similarly, new clinical specialties were being introduced into the curriculum and reinforced by clinical instruction in the school's affiliated hospitals and clinics. The modern era of medical education and practice was beginning to emerge.

Free Preliminary Lecture Course

Prior to suspension of the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific in 1864, a Preliminary Course of only one month duration was provided. At the Faculty meeting on 15 December 1870, shortly after successful completion of the first Session of the revived Medical Department, it was decided to augment the curriculum by lengthening the Preliminary Course of Lectures from one to four months. Attendance was optional and there was no examination or grade. As an inducement to attend the Course, there was no charge to the students who matriculated for the Regular (or Annual) Course.

For example, in 1872 the Preliminary Lecture Course was given over a four month period from February to May, and was followed by the five month Regular Course from June to November. Here is the description of the Preliminary Course from the Annual Announcement for 1872:[4][5]

Aware of the impossibility of treating fully in the Regular Course all the branches with which it is well for the Student to become acquainted, the Faculty instituted, in January 1872, an Extra Course of Lectures, which is now in operation, and is free to all Matriculants for the Regular Course. Eight Lectures a week are now being delivered on Insanity and Medical Jurisprudence, the Special Surgery of the Head, Special Anatomy, Operative Surgery and Pathology, Diseases of Children, Diseases of the Skin, the Thermometer in Diagnosis, Methods of Physical Diagnosis (Auscultation, Percussion, etc.), and on Practical and Analytical Chemistry and Toxicology. Besides this, Clinical Instruction is given three times a week at the College; and Surgical and Medical Clinics twice a week at the City and County Hospital. The Dissecting Room is open the year round for the use of Students.

The Preliminary Lecture Course (renamed "Intermediate Course" in 1878), required considerable additional unrequited effort by the Faculty. For those students who voluntarily took the Course, it had the effect of extending the annual term of instruction to nine months. This substantial offering by the Faculty was evidence of their determination to improve the educational program, but they were not yet prepared to adopt a three-year graded curriculum.

Clinical Instruction in 1872

We learn from the minutes of 28 June 1870 that Dr. Gibbons, Sr., was directed to secure hospital privileges for teaching purposes at the San Francisco City and County Hospital. The minutes of 1 April 1871 record that equal clinical privileges with the Toland School had now been granted at the Hospital. The County Hospital was the most important clinical teaching facility in the city and so promptly to obtain equal access with the Toland School, which might have shut them out, was a major coup for the revived Cooper school.

As an additional resource for clinical teaching, the Faculty decided on 9 July 1870 to establish a Free Public Clinic (to be located at the University College Building) in accordance with the following generous plan:[6]

Plan of Organization of the Public Dispensary and Clinique

  • 1st. The Faculty to have the entire control and management as in other College matters; to designate from time to time, who may perform the service in order to make it most available for clinical instruction.
  • 2nd. The Dispensary to be established and continued as a public charity, for the benefit of the poor, supplying medicines and advice gratuitously.
  • 3rd. Any expenses incurred for the Dispensary and Clinique shall be incurred and paid as are the College expenses.
  • 4th. The Dispensary shall be continued during the year in and out of the College Term and always open to the students of the College without charge.

The following excerpt from the Annual Announcement for the Session of 1872 outlines the overall provisions for Clinical Instruction made by the Faculty.[7]

Ample facilities for Clinical Instruction at the City and County Hospital having been obtained, Students will have the best opportunities for perfecting themselves in the practical branches. This Hospital contains over four hundred beds and from three hundred and fifty to four hundred patients, and furnishes examples of a large number of diseases. The greatest advantages for obtaining a knowledge of Venereal Diseases are afforded here, and Clinical Instruction will be regularly given on such affections and other Surgical Diseases including Diseases of the Eye and Ear, and of the Skin; on Diseases of Women, and on Diseases in general. Clinics are also occasionally given at some of the private hospitals.

Although the advantages thus offered are of much value, the Faculty desires to call special attention to the Public Dispensary established nearly two years ago, at the College building. New arrangements have just been completed, which will make the Clinic given here, a very efficient aid to Students in the study of disease, as material is abundant and of great variety and frequently furnishes operations. On three days of the week, patients are examined and prescribed for in the presence of the Students. Such a Clinic is of special value as enabling them to gain practical experience in the diagnosis and treatment of the Diseases of Children which cannot be obtained elsewhere.

In 1877 the U. S. Marine Hospital with 120 beds and 1000 patients annually, and St. Mary's Hospital were listed as also available for clinical teaching.[8]

It can be seen from the preceding review that the educational program of the MCP in 1872 was considerably improved over that in 1859, but the curriculum (like that in most other American medical colleges) was still quite deficient due to antiquated Requirements for Graduation.

Internship

In 1882 a formal program of postdoctoral training, available to a limited number of students, was announced.[9]

Students, immediately upon graduating, are eligible for appointment as Interns for one year at the City and County Hospital. The position entitles its possessor to room and board free of expense, and affords an invaluable opportunity for obtaining practical knowledge and experience.

This modest offering represents the first of a considerable number of internships and residency positions later to be made available by the hospitals of San Francisco.

Curricular Reforms 1879 to 1883

Following the original meeting of the Provisional Association of American Medical Colleges in May 1876, to which we have referred, Dr. Biddle, President of the Association, recommended to all medical colleges that they increase their graduation standards by requiring completion of three identical Annual Lecture Courses instead of the usual two (each Course of five months duration).

President Biddle's recommendation was discussed by the MCP Faculty on 15 March 1877 and "the Dean was instructed to reply to the Association of American Medical Colleges that our College was ready to accept the plan proposed if it be accepted by the other school in this city and by the schools throughout the country; and that we favor an additional regulation, requiring that every student, before being admitted to lectures, be subjected to a rigorous examination." This was a perfectly safe position for the Faculty to take because most of the other medical schools in the country would certainly not follow the Association's recommendation.

As will be further discussed below, in 1879 the MCP finally adopted Dr. Biddle's proposal for three identical Annual Lecture Courses as the first step in a major overhaul of the curriculum.

Meanwhile an exasperated Dr. Gibbons, Sr., in 1877 again entered the lists in defense of contemporary American medical education as he knew and cherished it. His description of student life at the Medical College of the Pacific provides a rare glimpse of their academic schedule.[10]

American physicians have written so much in complaint of the low standard of education in this country, and the low grade of our medical schools, that it is but reasonable for foreigners to take them at their word and presume on their ignorance and incompetence. I have heard of a man who was so impressed with a sense of his own unworthiness that he begged every person he met to give him a kick. His humility finds a parallel in some of our self condemning physicians, journalists and writers. . .

The truth is that we have in the profession a self constituted aristocracy who assume a superiority not founded on superior merit, and who would willingly provide laws for the brotherhood. But the only aristocracy which the profession will ever acknowledge is that of merit. The late Dr. Condie, who walked the streets of Philadelphia in the practice of medicine for fifty years, used to say that to drive a horse was a sign of weakness in the legs, and to drive a pair was a sign of weakness in the head. I should not like to say amen to this, but I submit that men who live in cities and drive two horses have no more right to dictate to the profession than the average country doctor. I might change my opinion should I come to drive two horses. . .

But let us look at home - for it is here that I wish to particularly direct your attention. In this new country, and with all the disadvantages of remote location and other circumstances, the range of study and practice in the school to which I am attached is so far superior to that of the great Pennsylvania schools thirty or forty years ago as to render the latter almost ridiculous. Then the microscope was unknown to the student. Now it is his daily companion. And so of the stethoscope, the speculum, the laryngoscope, the ophthalmoscope, the clinical thermometer, and other adjuvants to different branches of study.

I am sorry that a disposition exists in certain quarters to decry and frown down our California medical schools. . . In the college to which I am attached, the life of the student is one of constant industry and activity. Three days in the week he goes the round of the County Hospital, with its 400 patients, inspecting them for himself under the guidance of the professors - now in the medical ward, then in the surgical, from that to the ward for women and children, and for diseases of the eye and ear, and so forth. At the college he has a similar opportunity of investigating disease in the dispensary patients, who crowd there on three day of every week in numbers greater than can be properly disposed of. He handles chemicals in the laboratory, investigates morbid anatomy, and works in the dissecting room. All this is done, not merely during the regular lecture term of five months, but the whole year round. Didactic teaching also goes on throughout the year. Advanced students have opportunities of attending cases of labor under the private supervision of the professors. The stethoscope, the forceps, the clinical thermometer, the sphygmograph, the laryngoscope and other instruments old and new, are not forgotten. Examinations are made daily during the lectures, and the final examination for the degree is thorough and searching. When I graduated in the University of Pennsylvania, my examination occupied a short three quarters of an hour. At present two or three hours are required for each professor in our school. Our examinations are partly in writing , giving us a permanent record of the results. . .

And when I take a general survey of the condition and progress of medical science, and the character and qualifications of medical men in our own country, and especially in California, so far from feeling any sense of humility and shame, I proclaim myself proud of my profession, glad to be in it and of it, to be identified with it, to live in it and, when the time shall come, to die in it.

In spite of his apparent satisfaction with the state of the art in California, Professor Gibbons and his MCP colleagues at about this time began seriously to consider major curricular reform. The Faculty's final decision to adopt a more advanced standard of education was announced one year later on 17 April 1878 at the Annual meeting of the California State Medical Society in San Jose. The announcement was included in the Report of the Society's Committee on Medical Education, chaired by Dr. H. S. Orme of Los Angeles. In his Report, Dr. Orme lamented the parlous state of American medical education and asked a rhetorical question:[11]

Has anything been done to remedy these evils? We think there has; the bright light of a new day dawns upon us from the East. The Medical School of Harvard University, in 1871, as you are aware, inaugurated a system of education in that institution, which has stood the test of experiment for over six years, and has fairly won for that venerable university the imperishable honor of being the pioneer in the greatest of modern medical reforms. . .

I am happy to announce to you. . . (that) the Medical Department of the University of California and the Medical College of the Pacific have each conformed to this new system, and have formally established a three years' graded course of medical instruction in their respective schools. This is also gratifying to our sense of local pride, as every true Californian must feel a deep interest in the development and culture of all those who enter upon the study of our profession, and especially in the youth of this coast. These schools are attaining high rank, and we have reason to hope will soon be second to none in America.

Increase from Two to Three Identical Annual Lecture Courses

Dr. Orme was premature in announcing in 1878 that MCP had "formally established a three year's graded curriculum." Actually the MCP did not phase in the graded curriculum until the Session for 1881. Meanwhile only intermediate steps were taken. In 1879 Requirements for Graduation for the first time included attendance at three identical annual lecture courses (each of five months' duration), instead of two identical courses as formerly mandated. The rationale for this change, which had been recommended in 1876 by Dr. Biddle and the Association of American Medical Colleges, was outlined in the Annual Announcement of MCP for 1879, as follows:[12]

This requirement for three (identical) courses of lectures instead of two is simply putting into execution a long contemplated plan, as it has been the constant desire of the Faculty to raise the standard of medical education, and to graduate capable, rather than many, students. No increase of expense will result, nor will the plan necessarily extend the period of study, but rather provide for a more systematic and profitable use of time, and better fit the student for the arduous and responsible duties of his profession.

Apprenticeship Abolished

Another significant change in graduation requirements in 1879 was to abolish the requirement that: "The candidate must have studied medicine for three years (the terms of attending Lectures included) under the direction of a respectable practitioner." This timely alteration in graduation requirements eliminated the apprenticeship from the medical school curriculum.

The Three Year Graded Curriculum
(Three Course Plan of Medical Education)

The next important step in curricular reform was the adoption in 1881 of the graduation requirement that the student must have completed a graded sequence of three Annual Lecture Courses (also known as the "Three Course Plan of Medical Education"), instead of the three identical Annual Courses previously required. The details of the Three Course Plan were spelled out in the Announcement for 1881:[13]

The Faculty has now fully completed and established the Three Course plan of education, which has been adopted by a number of the leading Colleges of the United States. While a direct pecuniary disadvantage, it is, nevertheless, a great satisfaction to have accomplished this result, as it has been the constant desire of the Faculty to raise the standard of Medical Education and to graduate capable, rather than many, students. No increase of expense will result, nor will the plan necessarily extend the period of study, but rather provide for a more systematic and profitable use of time, and better fit the student for the arduous and responsible duties of his profession.

In carrying out this plan of a three-years' course, it has been determined to require a matriculating examination, or other evidence of the possession of at least a fair English education, with the expectation of making such examination more complete as the future may determine.

During the First Year the student will be expected to direct his attention mainly to descriptive anatomy with dissections, physiology, chemistry, microscopy and histology, and surgery, upon which subjects an examination will be held at the close of the course. He will, however, be required to attend lectures upon the other subjects whenever a thorough attention to the above branches will permit.

In the Second Year, to the studies above enumerated, will be added materia medica and therapeutics, theory and practice of medicine, obstetrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, otology, and pathology, with clinics on the various practical branches. At the close of this year, examinations will be given in descriptive anatomy, physiology and chemistry.

In the Third Year the studies include surgical anatomy, surgery, materia medica and therapeutics, theory and practice of medicine, obstetrics, gynecology, ophthalmology, otology, microscopy and histology, and pathology, with clinics on the various branches. The graduating examination will be oral and written, upon all the subjects considered in the third course. This plan will receive such modification as experience may render advisable.

As previously, graduation requirements still included the submission of a Medical Thesis.

Matriculation Requirement

The last academic reform to be introduced was the establishment of a formal requirement for matriculation (that is, for admission to the school.) It is interesting to note that no educational or other requirement for Matriculation in the Medical Department of University of the Pacific or its successor schools was specified in the Annual Announcements from 1859 through 1883, nor was the applicant requested to submit any information regarding prior education or training.[14]

The first specification of an admission requirement appears in the Annual Announcement of Cooper Medical College for 1884 as follows:[15]

No student will be admitted to the curriculum who has not attained the age of eighteen years. All applicants for admission, except such as posses the qualifications hereinafter described, must pass a matriculating examination. Graduates of literary, scientific, medical, or pharmaceutical colleges or universities, in good standing, graduates of High schools, and applicants who have passed the examination for admission to any recognized literary or university, or who hold first grade certificates from any Public School Board, as properly qualified teachers shall, on producing proper evidence of the same, be admitted to matriculation without examination The examination will be practical rather than technical, its object being to determine the candidate's general knowledge and natural capacity, and whether his previous acquirements have been sufficient to enable him to pursue the study of medicine to advantage. The candidate will be examined in the following branches: English Composition, Physics, Arithmetic and Latin. etc.

The crux of the matter here is that, beginning in 1884 , a High School education was sufficient preparation for admission but, prior to that date, there were no formal admission requirements and standards were undoubtedly even lower.

Assessment of Reforms

With adoption of the Three Course Plan (Three Year Graded Curriculum) in 1881, the Medical College of the Pacific joined Harvard, Pennsylvania and other progressive schools in the vanguard of curricular reform in American medical education.

The length of time required to obtain the M. D. degree was not increased. It remained at three years, but the content of the curriculum was immensely improved.

The combination of Intermediate Lecture and Regular Lecture Programs resulted in a school year of eight or nine months.

The apprenticeship, an outmoded experience that varied widely in quality depending upon the preceptor, was eliminated.

Minimum educational requirements for matriculation were finally established in 1884. These allowed admission on the basis of a High School diploma. Higher admission standards remained one of the major needs in medical education generally, but continued to be widely resisted nationally because higher standards meant fewer students eligible for admission and decreased income for the Professors.

Finances

Fees for the Three Course Plan

From 1859 through 1862 Lecture Fees were paid by students directly to individual Professors. From 1863 through 1878 a set charge of $ 130 was paid directly to the School for each Annual Lecture Course. When the three-year program was introduced in 1879, the Faculty decided to provide the lengthened program at no additional expense to the student. The cost of the two-year program was simply prorated over three years as follows:[16]

Fees for Three Regular Courses
First Course
Matriculation$ 5
Lectures$130
Demonstrator's Ticket$10
Second Course
Lectures$130
Third Course
Graduation$ 40

The net result of the new arrangement was to establish an overall tuition of $315 for three years of medical education.

Incidentally, the Medical Department of the University of California adopted essentially the same rate of tuition.[17]

School Finances and Faculty Compensation

The cost of operating the Medical College of the Pacific is indicated by the following excerpts from financial records of the College:[18]

Financial Report for 1870-1872
YearReceiptsExpendituresBalance
1870$ 1781$ 1270$ 511
187122491591658
1872 (to July 16)1788926862
Balance on Hand on 16 July 1972$ 2031
Allocation to Professors on 24 July 18721150*
Remaining in reserve$ 881

*On 24 July 1872 It was decided to allocate $ 100 to each of the following seven Professors (Bowie, Morse, Gibbons, Sr., Gibbons. Jr., Lane, Cushing and Ellinwood; and to allocate $ 250 to Professor Bentley (Microscopic Anatomy and Pathology) and $ 200 to Professor Price (Chemistry and Toxicology). Total allocation: $ 1150.

The year of 1876 was more prosperous than the earlier ones, as is apparent from the following financial report:[19]

Financial Report for 1876
YearReceiptsExpendituresBalance
1876$ 8456$ 6509*$ 1947

*On 30 October 1876, another dividend for the Professors was declared. The Dean was directed to disburse $ 200 for each of the past two years to each of the active Professors, making a total of $ 3400. This sum was included among the Expenditures.

The above data show that the Faculty of MCP received only nominal compensation. Further evidence of the fine spirit of the Faculty and their dedication to the school is seen in the following editorial comment in the PMSJ in the fall of 1882:[20]

It deserves mention that the Faculty of the College have, for several years, performed the duties of their respective Chairs without a dollar of compensation, leaving the entire income of the school to the purchase of the required equipment and the establishment of a fund for future use. The fund is now sufficient to furnish every department lavishly with apparatus, instruments, etc., and to lay the foundation for a museum and a library. This course is proposed to be continued so long as there shall be occasion for it. It might be difficult to find another medical school whose Faculty has done so much work and entirely relinquished the profits of their labor for college purposes.

We now have some idea of the annual income and expenditures of the Medical College of the Pacific. We also know that the only source of College income was student tuition of $ 315, paid at the rate of about $ 150 per year per student from 1870 to 1878 (when the curriculum was of two years' duration) and at an annual rate of about $ 100 from 1879 to 1882 (when the curriculum was extended to three years). Utilizing these figures, we can make a rough estimate of the annual tuition income to the College by tabulating annual MCP matriculants from 1870 to 1882: Please note that the number of graduates was only seven in 1880, less than half the number in the previous two years. Dr. Gibbons pointed out that this was due to increasing the length of the course of instruction from two to three years in 1879.[21][22][23]

Matriculants, Annual College Income and Graduates Medical College of the Pacific
YearMCP MatriculantsMCP Annual IncomeMCP GradsUCMD Grads
1872345100103
1873375550138
1874284200810
18753958501315
18766090002219
18776699001315
1878659750269
18795858001512
1880424200712
1881606000914
1882737300**
Total Graduates136117

* Annual graduates from the Medical Department of the University of California are listed for comparison.[24]
** M. D. degree granted by Cooper Medical College.

Faculty Affairs at Medical College of the Pacific

The twelve Professors comprising the Faculty during the first Session of the revived Medical Department in 1870 are listed in the previous chapter. With this roster as a baseline, we will document significant Faculty appointments and other relevant matters from 1870 through 1882 by referring to Faculty minutes which are dated for convenient reference.[25][26][27]

16 March 1871

Dr. Clinton Cushing (M. D., Rush Medical College, 1865) was appointed Professor of Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children, replacing Dr. R. Beverly Cole. Dr. Cushing left the Faculty in 1873 and returned as Professor of Gynecology in 1881.

5 December 1872

Dr. William A. Douglass (M. D., National Medical College, District of Columbia, 1850), was appointed Demonstrator of Anatomy. Dr. Douglass's superior abilities as an anatomist, surgeon and teacher were recognized by his rapid advancement to full professorial status through promotion to Adjunct Professor of Anatomy on 29 May 1874, and finally, on 19 April 1875, to the newly-established post of Professor of Clinical Surgery. After 1889 the name of Dr. Douglass no longer appears on the Faculty Roster of Cooper Medical College, and the Official Register of Physicians and Surgeons in California for 1891 lists him among the deceased.

12 December 1872

Adolph Barkan giving a demonstration in ophthalmology

see larger image »

A photo of Dr. Adolph Barkan (1845-1935)

Dr. Adolph Barkan (1845-1935) was appointed Professor of Ophthalmology and Otology, replacing Dr. W. F. Smith. Dr. Barkan, a native of Hungary, received his M. D. degree from the University of Vienna in 1866. After his graduation at Vienna, he was for one year (1867) an assistant to the chair of Physiology at the University of Graz.

Adolph Barkan (1845-1935)

see larger image »

A photo ofAdolph Barkan (1845-1935)

He then returned to the University of Vienna in 1868 where he was for a year "the youngest assistant" in the Ophthalmic Clinic of Professor von Jaeger in 1868. Following a year in Baltimore as resident physician to the Maryland Eye and Ear Infirmary he moved to San Francisco in 1869 where he entered medical practice. He was later described by Dr. Rixford as a brilliant and fascinating teacher, admired by faculty and an inspiration to students.[28]

24 April 1873

Dr. Jos. H. Wythe, graduate of Philadelphia College of Medicine in 1850, was appointed to a newly established chair as Professor of Microscopy and Biology. Dr. Wythe was a man of wide experience and many talents. During the Civil War he was an army surgeon and chaplain. In private life he was an educator, author, ordained Methodist minister, able surgeon and accomplished microscopist. He published the first complete American text on microscopy in 1852.

Dr. Wythe served as president of the Willamette University, a Methodist College in Salem, Oregon, and was a leader in founding at that institution Oregon's first medical school in 1867. When the ensuing faculty strife was not to his liking, he left the project to take up permanent residence in the Bay Area where, in addition to teaching and research in microscopy at the Medical College of the Pacific, he concurrently practiced medicine and surgery and occupied the pulpit of the Powell Street Methodist Church, attending to all the duties of pastor. He also found time to give frequent lectures in the area, to make astronomical observations through a powerful telescope he installed in his back yard, and to write a number of reference books.[29]

13 November 1873

Dr. Henry Gibbons, Jr., resigned as Professor of Materia Medica and Therapeutics in order to replace Dr. Clinton Cushing as Professor of Obstetrics and Diseases of Women and Children (a position held by Dr. Gibbons until his death in 1911).

4 December 1873

Dr. J. R. Prevost was appointed Professor of Materia Medica and Therapeutics, replacing Dr. Henry Gibbons, Jr. In 1876, three years after his appointment to the Faculty, Dr. Prevost died unexpectedly. He was in the prime of life, being only 32 years of age at the time. He graduated from Toland Medical College in 1866 and shortly after married a daughter of Dr. John F. Morse. In 1867 he entered into practice in San Francisco in conjunction with Dr. Morse. Four months prior to the death of Dr. Prevost from pneumonia, he lost his wife by the same disease. Four little ones were left without their parents.[30]

25 May 1874

Dr. W. T. Wythe, medical graduate of Willamette University, Oregon, in 1868 and the University of Pennsylvania in 1873, was appointed Lecturer on Physical Diagnosis.

29 May 1874

This was the last Faculty meeting attended by Dr. Lane before he sailed for Europe in July 1874. There he spent six months in Great Britain, six months in France and 10 months in Germany devoted to intensive study of surgery and medical education at major centers. He returned to the United States in September 1876 in time to deliver the Valedictory Address at the Commencement Exercises of the Medical College of the Pacific on 2 November 1876. On that occasion he gave an extensive account of his experiences abroad, to which we shall later refer.

29 May 1874

Dr. Edwin Bentley, Professor of Descriptive and Microscopic Anatomy and Pathology since 1870, was given the additional duty of serving as Acting Professor of Surgery in the absence of Dr. Lane. At the meeting of 31 October 1874 it was announced that he would also act as locum tenens in charge of Dr. Lane's practice.

30 December 1874

Dr. John F. Morse died on this date. Prior to his death, failing health had forced him to return to San Francisco from Hawaii where a planned voyage to Australia was interrupted because of his worsening condition. One of the most respected of the pioneer physicians, thousands attended his funeral, said to have been the largest ever seen in California. It was through the earnest labors of Professor Morse that the College Dispensary became a permanency. Upon his death it was named the Morse Dispensary in his honor.

Among the surviving children was his brilliant son, John F. Morse, Jr., who graduated from the Medical College of the Pacific in 1878. After study abroad, he returned in 1883 and became associated in practice with Dr. William A. Douglass, Professor of Clinical Surgery whom he assisted as visiting surgeon to the City and County Hospital. In 1883 Dr. Morse joined the Cooper Medical College Faculty as Adjunct to the Chair of Anatomy, but in 1884 his title was changed to Adjunct to the Chair of Clinical Surgery. When Professor Douglass became emeritus in 1889, Dr. Morse was named to the chair as Professor of Clinical Surgery.[31][32][33]

19 April 1875

Dr. William T. Wenzell was appointed Professor of Chemistry and Toxicology to replace Professor Price due to the latter's extended absence from San Francisco.

Adjunct Professor of Anatomy William A. Douglass was elected to fill the newly-established post of Professor of Clinical Surgery.

Dr. W. T. Wythe was appointed to fill the position of Adjunct Professor of Anatomy vacated by Dr. Douglass. In 1878, Dr. Wythe was advanced to rank of Professor of Anatomy. He died of an obscure, lingering illness on 26 June 1880 in his thirty-third year.

3 June 1875

Dr. J. P. Whitney resigned his appointment as Emeritus Professor of the Institutes of Medicine. He had been originally appointed to the professorship in 1863. Now it was rumored that an anonymous "black mail" sheet, known as the San Francisco News Letter, was about to report that his claim to having received an M. D. degree from Jefferson Medical College in 1834 was false. The Faculty were upset by the accusation and deferred action on Dr. Whitney's resignation.[34]

12 June 1875

At the previous meeting Dr. Whitney had submitted his resignation. At this meeting, it was decided to accept it without comment. The Faculty also discussed a letter from Dr. Miller, ad eundem graduate in 1873, who protested that his diploma bore the signature of the discredited Dr. Whitney. Under instruction by the Faculty, the Dean got in touch with Dr. Miller immediately and somehow placated him for we find no further reference to the issue in subsequent minutes.

Dr. James P. Whitney (1815-1880) was born in Oswego Country, New York. After practicing about eighteen years in the East he joined the westward migration and probably arrived in San Francisco in 1853. When he began practice in San Francisco he let it be known among the profession that he had received an M. D. degree from Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia in 1834. He soon acquired a busy general and obstetrical practice and aligned himself with the various evanescent medical societies that flourished and faded in the 1850's and 60's. He was active in the Pathological Society, the Second San Francisco Medical Society, the Medico-Chirurgical Association, and the State Medical Society. Dr. Whitney's long and constructive participation in medical organizations was rewarded in 1868 by his election as the first president of the Third San Francisco Medical Society.

In 1875 Dr. Whitney was sixty years of age, with forty years behind him as a respected practitioner, twenty-two of them in San Francisco where he had also been a professor in the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific and the Medical College of the Pacific; a Trustees of Toland Medical College; and a valued member of the Board of Health. Throughout these years of medical practice, teaching and public service, he had been haunted by a dark secret regarding the authenticity of his medical degree. He knew that it would destroy his hard-won reputation if disclosed.[35]

In spite of Dr. Whitney's impeccable professional record and high standing in the medical community, the News Letter published on 10 July 1875 included his name on a list of over 200 practitioners in San Francisco who were alleged to be without legitimate M. D. degrees. The News Letter demanded that these practitioners produce their medical diplomas or be disbarred from practice. In the same issue there were listed the names of some 230 "regular" physicians said to be holding bona fide degrees. The implication was that almost half the medical practitioners in San Francisco were "Quacks."

As a result of the News Letter's allegations, the State Medical Society set up a Screening Committee chaired by Dr. Logan to examine the credentials of its members.[36]

The Screening Committee noted that when the editors of the Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal compiled the first Medical Registry in the State of California in 1858, Dr. Whitney provided them with the information that he had received an M. D. degree from Jefferson Medical College in 1834. He also certified when signing the Constitution of the State Medical Society that he was a graduate of Jefferson in 1834.[37][38]

On investigation, the Screening Committee of the State Medical Society found that Dr. Whitney had never graduated from Jefferson or any other medical school. The Committee then decided to notify and grant a hearing to such members as Dr. Whitney with a view to giving them the Society's endorsement as practitioners of medicine if found qualified. Averse to having his qualifications to practice medicine subjected to a review of this nature, Dr. Whitney ignored the Committee's summons, withheld his dues, and considered himself no longer a member of the State Society.

In the following year, 1876, the Medical Practice Act was adopted by the State establishing a Board of Medical Examiners, and this body granted Dr. Whitney a license to practice. Nevertheless, the Board of Censors of the State Society demanded his formal expulsion from the Society because of the implied insult in his refusal to answer the summons of the Screening Committee in 1875. In spite of the strenuous efforts of Henry Gibbons to quash the matter, the Censors persisted in demanding Dr. Whitney's expulsion from the Society. The wretched issue was finally settled in 1877 by the Society's acceptance of Dr. Whitney's resignation, reluctantly penned by his own hand.[39]

According to the official History of the San Francisco Medical Society, Dr. Whitney's son, James D. Whitney, was outraged at the Society's humiliation of his father and took matters into his owns hands:[40]

As a finishing touch to the pv James D. Whitney (graduate of the University of the Pacific in 1863), a loyal and irate son, applied a cowhide lash to the august person of the chairman of the Board of Censors, as he stooped to pick up his valise and board the train for Sacramento after his last meeting. This culminated in the Police Court, a fine, a resolution of indignation from the Sacramento Medical Society and the permanent absence of the name of Whitney from the State Society roster by mutual desire.

Little is known of the remaining thirteen years of the life of Dr. J. P. Whitney, a man of studious bent who in his later career stood aloof from medical cliques and factional strife. He was exceptionally well-read and a devoted teacher. Considering the content of medical education in 1834, it is reasonable to believe that his lack of a diploma of that vintage was amply compensated by his assiduous study and long practical experience.

In an obituary published in the Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal at the time of Dr. Whitney's death in 1880, Dr. Gibbons, Sr., referred to him as "a man of uncommon power of thought and general intellectual capacity and a great reader with a very retentive memory. An original thinker and, as a student versed in all the literature of his profession, he had no superior on the Pacific Coast. His judgment and skill as a practitioner induced his confreres to call him frequently in consultation."[41]

Nevertheless, Dr. Whitney could not pass the acid test, he could not prove the authenticity of the M. D. degree he claimed to hold, a not uncommon failing among pioneer physicians. Ironically, although his qualifications to practice were validated by the State Board of Medical Examiners, his long career was blighted by the harsh penalty exacted from him by the State Society, not for having no medical diploma, but for refusing to answer its summons. The quality of his mind and the standards of his medical practice were never in question. So ended another melancholy episode in the medical annals of early San Francisco.

Professor Gibbons, Sr., Arraigned

The San Francisco News Letter of 10 July 1875 also blasted Professor Gibbons, Sr., and the Medical College of the Pacific:[42]

Henry Gibbons, Sr. We like not to speak of the aged except with respect. It is with extreme regret that we find it necessary to speak otherwise of Dr. Henry Gibbons, Senior. The truth has compelled us to charge him with engaging in the bad business of procuring diplomas for ignorant pretenders for coin. There was the notorious case of "Doctor" Allen. The man reluctantly admitted, whilst under oath, that he had bought his diploma from the Gibbons institution without attending the necessary course of lectures. His testimony was commented upon in the Alta and other papers; and yet Gibbons, who is so ready to "come back" upon all occasions, was as dumb as an oyster. An ignorant man named Jackson came down from the country and attended some half dozen lectures (at the Medical College of the Pacific) and was then put down for a diploma. Dr. Beverly Cole, happening to hear of the disgrace that was about to fall upon the profession, protested against it, but the diploma was sold to the man notwithstanding; and he is now a practicing doctor and a member of the State Medical Society. Before Gibbons had a diploma manufactory of his own, it was his custom to act as broker for their purchase from a Philadelphia institution of loose practices and of easy virtue. He obtained one for Dr. H. S. Baldwin of this city from that concern. . . .When the Legislature meets we propose to submit to a committee proofs of the sale of diplomas by the (Medical College of the Pacific).

There is more harsh criticism of Dr. Gibbons, Sr., and the Medical College in the News Letter but the above will serve as a sufficient example.

We have examined the claim that two of the graduates of the School (George H. Jackson of Woodland in 1871 and Jacob Allen of San Bernadino in 1872) had received M. D. degrees without full attendance on the lectures, and that they had "bought" their diplomas. We have obtained the following information on the subject from the Faculty Minutes and the Register of Students.

With respect to Mr. Jackson, the Register shows that he attended only three months of the five-month Annual Session of 1870. This appears to represent his total participation in the teaching program of the school. On 26 May 1871 the Faculty "decided to grant a degree to G. H. Jackson, he having passed a satisfactory examination." We assume that he had previously been engaged in apprenticeship or independent medical practice and that he was given credit for this experience in lieu of the statutory second Annual Session of lectures. As we recall, Elias Cooper obtained his medical degree from St. Louis University in 1851 after only one course of Annual Lectures, on similar grounds. However, as far as we can determine, Mr. Jackson completed considerably less than even one Annual Session and was nevertheless awarded a "regular" M. D. degree. (That is, the qualifier "ad eundem" was not appended to his M. D.) If this reading of the record is correct, we may fairly conclude that the standards applied in his case were lax, and criticism warranted. Of course, all the circumstances in the case are unknown. However, we have already learned that Dr. Gibbons, Sr., had a high regard for the educational value of medical practice, and thought it deserved more credit than it sometimes received.

In the case of Jacob Allen, we seem to have an example of the fullest expression of the Gibbons philosophy on the value of medical practice, i. e., the awarding of a regular M. D. degree to a candidate who attended no medical school at all. At least we can find no evidence in the Register or elsewhere that Jacob Allen matriculated in the Medical College of the Pacific or was present at the Annual Lecture Series. We find only two entries in the Faculty minutes pertaining to his candidacy for a medical degree. On 26 May 1871 it was decided that a degree should be granted to "Dr. J. Allen" upon payment of "fees for Matriculation, Course and Graduation, and if he passes an examination in the practical branches." Since the candidate was listed in the Faculty minutes as "Dr." J. Allen, it is assumed that he was already functioning in San Bernadino as a practicing physician, but without an M. D. - a familiar situation. The second and final entry in the minutes was on 3 October 1872: "Jacob Allen to have degree." At the Commencement Exercises on 4 November 1872 (which Jacob Allen did not attend), he was awarded a "regular" M. D. degree with nine other candidates. We can only suggest from the evidence available that Dr. Allen seems to have graduated without going to medical school. In less charitable terms, the Editor of the News Letter charged that "he had bought his diploma from the Gibbons institution without attending the necessary course of lectures." Again we are unable for lack of documentation to refute or confirm the anonymous editor's assertion. At the very least, the school's records now available regarding Dr. Allen are deficient.

We return now briefly to the issue of the sale of a Philadelphia diploma by Dr. Gibbons, Sr., to Dr. H. S. Baldwin. At the Fifth Annual Meeting of the California State Medical Society held in Sacramento on 21-22 April 1875, Dr. Thomas Logan was appointed chairman of a Committee to Inquire into the Rumor Regarding the Admission of Unqualified Members into the Society.[43] This Committee investigated the medical degree of Dr. H. S. Baldwin and found it to be valid. The Committee further reported that charges to the contrary (in the News Letter) were unfounded.[44] These findings exonerated Dr. Gibbons of the irresponsible accusation that he had conspired with Dr. Baldwin to obtain for him a bogus diploma from a Philadelphia source. This incident serves as a reminder that the mail-order sale of counterfeit medical diplomas was actually a thriving business in both America and Europe at the time, engendering much confusion and disrespect for the profession among the public.

The News Letter also included Beverly Cole, the Toland School, certain other of its faculty members, and the San Francisco Medical Society in its intemperate broadside. The anonymous editor's castigation of the medical schools, societies and profession for their failure to maintain standards and purge the profession of impostors evoked great indignation among the doctors. But there were abundant facts among the reckless charges, and the beneficial net result of the inflammatory News Letter was to spur needed reforms.

In retrospect, during the first five years following the revival of the Cooper school in 1870 there was a tendency to unduly liberalize the requirements for the M. D. degree as, for example, in the cases of Jackson and Allen. It was probably in direct response to the public airing of these cases, that the Faculty after 30 October 1976 adopted stricter procedures for evaluating the medical students.

The Faculty of the Medical College of the Pacific were badly shaken by the News Letter affair. As far as we know, Dr. Gibbons and the Medical College did not respond publicly or otherwise to the accusations, perhaps not wishing to dignify them with a rebuttal. Nor are we aware that the editor of the News Letter ever submitted proof to the Legislature of the sale of diplomas by the Medical College of the Pacific as he threatened to do. We found absolutely no evidence among the College records of such trafficking, except as inferred in the cases of Jackson and Allen. We do know that Professor A. J. Bowie, President of the Faculty, was deeply concerned about the charges of the sale of diplomas by the College and said that he would resign if the charges could not be denied.[45] In the sequel, Professor Bowie did not resign and future events showed that from this time forward the College pressed resolutely ahead on the path of curricular reform.

9 June 1876

Dr. L. L. Dorr, a graduate of Bellevue Hospital Medical College in 1866, was appointed as temporary Professor of Materia Medical and Therapeutics until the end of the Session of 1876, replacing Professor Prevost who died. On 9 May 1881 Dr. Dorr was formally elected as Professor of Materia Medica and Therapeutics.

7 July 1876

Dr. R. H. Plummer, graduate of Toland Medical College in 1866, was appointed Clinical Teacher of Diseases of Women. On 21 August 1876 he was unanimously invited to fill the Chair of Theory and Practice of Medicine for the balance of the Session of 1876 on account of the illness of Dr. Gibbons, Sr. On 3 December 1880 he was appointed Lecturer on Anatomy. Finally, sometime in late 1882 or early 1883, Dr. Plummer completed his peripatetic service on the faculty and was appointed Professor of Anatomy. He was a man of ability and untiring energy, well-known for his service as Secretary of the State Board of Medical Examiners from 1879 to 1888.[46]

4 October 1877

Dr. Joseph Oakland Hirschfelder was born in Oakland, California, in 1854. He was the first child of white parents to be born in that city, a circumstance that led to the choice of "Oakland" as his middle name. He matriculated in the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific in 1871 when he was eighteen years of age. He was not only too young to be granted the M. D. in the following year, but he also upset the equilibrium of the Faculty by refusing to take the same lectures over again as required by the curriculum at the time. Instead he departed for Germany where he remained from 1872 to 1877, studying with renowned medical figures and in 1876 receiving a medical diploma from the University of Leipzig. Upon his return to San Francisco in 1877, after five years residence and study abroad, he was unanimously elected as Professor of Materia Medica and Therapeutics. When the Department of Clinical Medicine was established on 13 January 1881, he was appointed Professor of Clinical Medicine.[47][48][49]

3 December 1880

Dr. W. D. Johnston, graduate of the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific in 1871, was appointed Professor of Chemistry upon resignation of the incumbent, Dr. Wenzell.

Women Admitted to Medical Schools in San Francisco

29 May 1876

On motion of Professor Wenzell (Chemistry), seconded by Professor Barkan (Ophthalmology), the Faculty voted to admit women to the Medical College of the Pacific on equal terms with males. There was no debate. The time for action had come. The first woman to be admitted to the College was Alice Higgins. She was forty years of age, born in Massachusetts, and a resident of Anaheim, California. She matriculated in 1876 and graduated the following year on 6 November 1877.

In 1878, Anabel McG. Stuart of Santa Barbara was the second woman to graduate.

Emilie M. Lawson and Kate N. Post of San Francisco, and Mary Whitney of Minnesota graduated in 1879. In subsequent years, well into the next decade, there were up to several women graduates annually.

Class of 1899 Miss May McKinney; Miss Eliz. Keys; Miss Grace Sharp; Miss Nellie Morse; Miss Mary Harris; Miss Mariana Bertola; Mrs. Beatrice Hinkle; Mrs. Elizabeth Grotefend

see larger image »

A photo of class of 1899 Miss May McKinney; Miss Eliz. Keys; Miss Grace Sharp; Miss Nellie Morse; Miss Mary Harris; Miss Mariana Bertola; Mrs. Beatrice Hinkle; Mrs. Elizabeth Grotefend

However, the palm for being the first medical school on the Pacific Coast to graduate a woman goes to the Medical Department of the University of California. Against his better judgment, Dean Cole allowed a 33 year-old former school teacher, Mrs. Lucy Maria Field Wanzer, to matriculate in the Medical Department in 1873. Actually he was legally obliged to accept her as a medical student because the University of California was, by law, a coeducational institution.

Dean Cole was an outspoken opponent of medical education for women and had many times referred to them as mentally and constitutionally unsuited for such arduous studies. In spite of his bias, Mrs. Wanzer's determination and brilliant performance led him temporarily to suspend his views in her case. She received her M. D. degree with the Class of 1876, and became the first woman graduate of the western schools.[50][51]

Founding of the Alumni Association of the Medical College of the Pacific in 1878

At a Faculty Meeting on 1 February 1877, Dr. Lane moved that the Faculty recommend to the alumni of the College that they establish an Alumni Association of the Medical College of the Pacific. The motion was approved. A year and a half then passed before the subject was again raised, although there were doubtless consultations with key alumni in the meantime to enlist their support.

In the Faculty Meeting on 3 October 1878 it was decided to invite the alumni to meet at the College on 11 November. The timing was opportune, being a week following the Annual Commencement of the Medical College held on 5 November. At that Commencement the M. D. degree was conferred on twenty-six alumni, including one woman - much the largest class hitherto graduated on the Pacific Coast by either medical school.

It would appear from the available documents that a group of alumni probably met on 5 November 1878, the day of the Commencement, and drafted the Constitution and By-Laws of the Alumni Association of the Medical College of the Pacific . This draft was then approved at the first formal gathering of the alumni who met in the College Building on 11 November 1878 in response to the invitation of the Faculty.[52]

The following account of this meeting was carried in the Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal for November 1878:[53]

Dr. Pond, of Napa, was chosen temporary chairman. The proposition to organize permanently was greeted with universal favor and called forth a number of animated speeches. An organization was effected, with the following officers for the ensuing year: President, Chester Rowell, M. D. of Virginia City, Class of 1870 (son of the late Professor Isaac Rowell); 1st Vice-President, Jos. Wagner, M. D., San Francisco, Class of 1872; 2d Vice-President, Jno. R. Kelley, M. D., Gilroy, Class of 1876; Corresponding Secretary, J. B. Williams, M. D., Oakland, Class of 1877; Recording Secretary, John F. Morse, M. D., San Francisco, Class of 1878 (son of the late Professor John F. Morse).

The Association then met annually at or about the time of the Commencement to elect officers and transact other business through 1881-1882 when the Medical Coll.

Levi Cooper Lane in Europe

Dr. and Mrs. Lane boarded the Cunard Steamer, Algeria, at Jersey City on 18 July 1874. Nine days later, weary and sick from rough seas, they disembarked at the Irish seaport of Queenstown. From there they traveled to Dublin where Dr. Lane was warmly received by Stokes, Corrigan, Colles and other physicians whose names are still associated with their signal contributions to medicine.

After a most congenial visit among "the quick, impulsive and ready-witted Celts," he crossed over to the land of the dour Scots in September, stopping first in Glasgow. It was there that Joseph Lister, greatest of the English Quaker physicians and foremost British surgeon, established the principles of antiseptic surgery. Lister had by the time of Lane's European tour returned to the University of Edinburgh where he received his earlier training under Scotland's renowned Professor James Syme. In Edinburgh Lister continued the historic investigations that gave surgeons "the power to perform the majority of operations without occurrence of the inflammation which formerly hung like the sword of Damocles over every grave surgical procedure."

It was in Edinburgh that Lane visited Lister whom he described as "a quiet, retiring man, and free to communicate with us, and even to give us the recent improvements which he has made in his antiseptic formulae." In Lane's view at the time "much remains to be done to perfect the method of Lister, yet, in its present state, its excellencies are so great, that it has been introduced into the majority of the great hospitals of Europe." While visiting on Lister's hospital wards at the University of Edinburgh, Lane was conscious of witnessing, in the presence of its genius, the advent of a new era in surgery.[60]

October of 1874 found Lane in London where he avidly attended the numerous public lectures made available there by notables in science and medicine. He was much impressed by the series of eighty-four lectures delivered by Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895). Doctor Huxley, a medical graduate of London University in 1845, was England's greatest student of natural history and the ablest interpreter and supporter of the evolutionary theories of Charles Darwin.

Lane climbed eleven flights of time-worn granite stairs to reach the natural history museum, laboratory and unpretentious lecture room of "the plain, simple and unostentatious Huxley who in every word, movement and act presented that modesty and want of display which always indicate and reveal the scholar. If we stop and hear one of his lectures, the qualities mentioned shine forth even more manifestly. Once having heard him, no one asks for further evidence of the universality of his knowledge in his department. . . I was happy to find, for once, a man who is not over estimated.[61]

While in London Lane also critically appraised medical education, hospitals and prominent surgeons. The following are his observations on the English system for granting diplomas. His clarification of that system is relevant to the debate on examination for the medical degree which so agitated the medical profession in California prior to the enactment of legislation on medical licensure in April 1876 to which we have already referred.[62]

On inquiring in regard to medical institutions, we learn that instead of one or two great schools, London has eleven medical Colleges, the eleventh and youngest being the Female Medical College, established two years ago. Besides these metropolitan institutions, there are a few Provincial medical colleges, viz., one at Liverpool, one at Manchester, one at Leeds, and one at Birmingham. Yet none of these has the power of granting diplomas; this power being invested in two boards, resident in London, and known respectively as the "Royal College of Physicians" and the "Royal College of Surgeons." The former confers the title of M. D.; the Royal College of Surgeons confers merely the title of Member or Fellow.

It is claimed that this isolation of the power that confers degrees from that which teaches, is a great improvement over the system which now obtains in America. This would be so, were the two really isolated; but unfortunately, such separation does not exist there; and, I may remark here, that it does not exist anywhere in Europe. In London, both of the corporate bodies which confer degrees, are composed mainly of men who are professors in the medical schools. Such is the case in France, and such is the case in Germany; so that in these respects, I regret to say we do not differ materially from the Old World; for it would be a great improvement if teaching and examining were in part, at least, committed to different persons.

Lane's lucid explanation of the English system showed that the Europeans had not succeeded, in actual practice, of separating the teaching from the degree-granting function in medical education as was their original objective. Dr. Gibbons, Sr., and other advocates of the English model had in recent years learned by trial and error the impracticality of such a separation.

Also while Dr. Lane was in London, the Court of Examiners of the Royal College of Surgeons of England "deliberately examined him and found him to be fit and capable to exercise the Art and Science of Surgery. " Having so concluded, they admitted Dr. Lane a Member of the Royal College of Surgeons on 29 January 1875, thus entitling him to add the goodly "M. R. C. S., Eng." to his medical credentials.[63][64]

Early in March 1875, Dr. and Mrs. Lane gladly forsook the grand but gloomy city of London with its smoke, rain and sturdy medical traditions. They crossed the Channel and under the blue sky of la belle France traveled south, by-passing Paris, to take up brief residence in the ancient city of Avignon. From there Dr. Lane addressed a letter on 15 March to the Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal.[65] His remarks in the letter were devoted to Avignon's Roman, ecclesiastical and literary history, and to the celebrated past and disappointing present of the nearby and once-famous Montpelier Medical School.

The Lanes spent the summer of 1875 in Paris where, after the staid atmosphere of the London scene, Dr. Lane was captivated by the polished oratory of the French professors; the dynamic and cosmopolitan atmosphere of the School of Medicine. There were also the grand old Hotel Dieu, mother of French hospitals and medical schools; and the felt presence in art and history of a glorious medical lineage including such savants as Ambroise Paré (1510-1590), military surgeon of the Renaissance; Laennec (1781-1826) and Trousseau (1801-1867), pioneers in pulmonary diseases; Dupuytren (1777-1835) and Velpeau (1795-1867), clinical surgeons par excellence. Fluent in French, Lane wrote his lecture notes in la langue française

The stay in Paris was a brief six months for his command of the German language and respect for German institutions drew him inexorably to Berlin, the cultural center of Germany and seat of the University of Berlin. There he arrived with his wife in October 1875 to spend the following winter and spring.

It was typical of his tireless commitment to self-improvement that his European Wanderschaft should conclude with a formal doctoral program of study at the Medical School of the Wilhelms Universität of Berlin.

Lane's principle faculty advisor for the program was Professor Bernhard von Langenbeck (1810-1887), the greatest clinical surgeon and teacher of his day in Germany. The Professor taught and operated at the Klinicum Hospital where Lane attended his lectures and observed on his clinical service.[66]

Lane's other mentor at the University of Berlin was the noted Rudolph Virchow (1821-1902), Professor of Pathology and Director of the Pathological Institute at the Charité Hospital. On 1 November 1875 Lane registered for Professor Virchow's courses which included Demonstrative Pathological Anatomy, Microscopical Pathology and Lectures on General Pathology. In addition to these formal courses, Lane worked every second forenoon in Virchow's Laboratory so that he was in a position to speak knowingly of this remarkable man:[67][68]

Of all the men now living I can cite no none who exhibits so many phases of mental character united in one person as he. For example, he possesses most wonderful powers of analysis, as shown in his unfolding the complexities of disease, until he has found the minute cellular aberrations which have caused it.

Besides his work as a professor, he writes and supervises an immense mass of printed matter; he is a member of the Prussian House of Deputies, where he delivers, at least once a week, one of the most remarkable speeches of the day; he belongs to the Democratic or people's party, and is now fiercely fighting the fusion of Church and State, which many are aiming at. In reference to a recent act of the Government looking in that direction, he boldly asked to know by what right the Emperor took such a step. He has also a place in the Berlin Municipal Government, delivers, now and then, a lecture abroad, and also one almost weekly before one of the most popular associations or Vereins. He has been challenged by Bismarck, and declined to fight until Bismark would become his peer in morality.

Such is Virchow - without an equal as disseminator of knowledge among the popular masses, and almost without a peer in the political arena of Prussia. In the still higher sphere of medical science, he has done yet more, since he has reduced to a simple system, by means of a half dozen generalizations, the hitherto inextricable maze of Tumors; and in the chaotic domain of the Pathology of internal Medicine, his genius has wrested from the unknown, more territory than any other man of the present or past.

In addition to didactic and clinical studies, Lane's doctoral program included preparation and defense of a dissertation entitled Fractures of the Femur and their Treatment, comprising a review of the literature and a detailed exposition of the mechanism, management and prognosis of the lesion. Upon successful completion of the requisite studies, dissertation and examinations, Dr. Lane was awarded the degree of Doctor of Medicine and Surgery, magna cum laude, by Berlin University on 7 March 1876.[69]

In a statement appended to his Dissertation, Lane graciously thanked Professors Virchow and Langenbeck "for the courtesies received from their hands, and especially for the ideas learned from their teaching."[70]

In spite of the heavy demands of the doctoral program at the University, Lane did not neglect his rigorous personal agenda of language study, as indicated by the note in his Diary for 26 December 1875:[71]

Read Greek, Latin and French, the usual linguistic studies of Sunday. Also read the section of Logic upon the Fallacies.

Lane's Diary is an impressive example of his remarkable aptitude for language. It includes entries in French, German and Spanish, the last of which he learned during the two years he spent off the coast of Central America while in the U. S. Navy.[72]

In addition to the primary goal of study and observation at Europe's chief medical centers, Dr. and Mrs. Lane's foreign excursion was also a cultural pilgrimage. Mrs. Lane's delightful diary of their wide-ranging journey, published in a book entitled, Letters of Travel, is a perceptive and lively commentary on the arts, history and contemporary life at sites visited by the Lanes from Scandinavia and St. Petersburg in the north, through Switzerland and Italy to the pyramids of Gizah in the south.

Unfortunately, we have discovered no personal information about the talented Mrs. Lane. Aside from the bare announcement that she was married to Levi Cooper Lane on 16 March 1870, we have so far seen no reference to her except for the following entry in Dr. Lane's Diary on New Year's Eve, 1870: "The year has been one of success in business, in health, and above all in a fortunate marriage." We shall in due course learn more of Mrs. Lane's significant role in support of her husband's lofty objectives, but of her prior life we are to remain woefully uninformed.[73]

Dr. and Mrs. Lane spent the last days of their Grand Tour in London where he made the following final entry in his Diary:[74]

20 August 1876, London. Tomorrow we leave for Liverpool whence we sail for America on the 26th of this month. Today, Sunday, it has been raining until a few minutes ago, when the sun appeared and is now throwing an autumnal sheen on Queen's Square to which I regret to bid adieu.

We have no further word of Dr. Lane until he appears on the podium at Calvary Church on 2 November 1876 to deliver the Valedictory Address at the commencement Exercises. Thereafter, he was increasingly involved in the affairs of the College.

Dr. Lane's Finances

Before leaving the subject of Dr. Lane's European travels, we should ask how it was financially possible for him to absent himself from practice for a period of two years from mid 1874 to mid 1876. We recall that he entered surgical practice with Elias Cooper in the Spring of 1861 at the age of thirty-three. He had spent the previous year in study abroad and, as a result, probably used up his savings from prior service in the U. S. Navy.

Upon the death of Elias Cooper in October 1861, Dr. Lane inherited his practice which, as we have seen, grossed about $ 8000 per year. Ten years later, in 1871, Lane's meticulous financial records show that he consistently earned more than $ 18,000 annually in gross income. By this time he had acquired considerable real estate - a rancho in Napa Valley, and rental property on Fulsom, Steiner and Washington Streets in San Francisco. He continued to maintain the office and residence on Mission street as Cooper had done, a convenient and economical arrangement since the original Cooper school and Infirmary had been on those premises. Regarding his affairs in general, Lane made the following entry in his Diary on his birthday in 1871:[75]

9 May 1871. Have finished my 43rd year, one of the most successful of my life. Have a good wife, have made enough money, and have been well.

Thus, prior to his European sojourn, Lane prospered from a busy medical practice and bought real estate as an investment. Although financial records for the years following his return in 1876 are not as revealing as those he previously kept, his office log books provide ample evidence of a thriving practice during the remaining years of the decade. During that same period we know that he purchased stock, and that he continued to invest in real estate for by the early 80's he had acquired fourteen properties in San Francisco as well as acreage in the Fresno and Los Angeles areas. As further evidence of increasing affluence, Dr. Lane continued to maintain an office at 652 Mission Street, and in 1878 purchased a residence at 2302 Clay Street at the corner of Buchanan where he had office hours every evening at seven thirty.[76][77][78]

As the decade of the 1880's opened, Dr. Lane, now in his 52nd year, had been engaged in teaching and a lucrative medical practice for twenty years. He and Mrs. Lane had no children and his nightly vigils of study, writing and cultivation of the classics were uninterrupted. A prodigious number of articles, lectures, translations, and chapters of his own masterwork, Surgery of the Head and Neck, flowed from his pen. Meanwhile his financial affairs prospered and his fortune grew apace, as though tended by an unseen hand, and for a purpose that he would yet "be given to see."

Endnotes

  1. Henry Gibbons, Sr. , Introductory Lecture, Medical Department of the University of the Pacific, July 5th 1870 (San Francisco: John H. Carmany and Co., 1870), p. 15 Lane Library catalog record
  2. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1872, p. 13 Lane Library catalog record
  3. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1872, p. 11 Lane Library catalog record
  4. Faculty Minutes for 25 January to 2 March 1872, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 23 May 1870 to 24 May 1874, Box 1.18, vol. 1, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  5. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1872, pp. 10-11 Lane Library catalog record
  6. Faculty Minutes for 9 July 1870, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 23 May 1870 to 24 May 1874, Box 1.18, vol. 1, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  7. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1872, pp. 7-8 Lane Library catalog record
  8. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1877, p. 7 Lane Library catalog record
  9. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1882, p. 15 Lane Library catalog record
  10. Henry Gibbons, Sr. , "Some Defensive Remarks on the Medical Education and Medical Schools of America, and Particularly California," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 20, no. 1 (Jun 1877): 1-9 Lane Library catalog record
  11. H. S. Orme , "Report on Medical Education," Transactions of the Medical Society of the State of California, 1877-1878 (Sacramento: H. S. Crocker and Co, 1878), pp. 42-43 Lane Library catalog record
  12. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1879, pp. 6 and 14 Lane Library catalog record
  13. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1881, pp. 5-6 Lane Library catalog record
  14. Annual Announcements[of the Medical Department of the University of the Pacific, of the Medical College of the Pacific, of the Cooper Medical College], 1859 through 1883 Lane Library catalog record, Lane Library catalog record, Lane Library catalog record,
  15. Annual announcement of the Cooper Medical College (for 1884), pages 9-10 Lane Library catalog record
  16. Annual Announcement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Session of 1882, pp. 6 and 14 Lane Library catalog record
  17. "Tuition, Medical Department University of California," Annual Announcements, Medical Department University of California (1870 and 1878). Personal Communication from Archivist William Roberts, University Archives, University of California, Berkeley, CA
  18. Faculty Minutes for 24 July 1872, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 23 May 1870 to 24 May 1874, Box 1.18, vol. 1, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford
  19. Faculty Minutes for 30 October 1876 and 4 January 1877, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 6 August 1874 to 22 November 1877, Box 1.18, vol. 2, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  20. "Editorial. Our Journal - Two Numbers in One - The New College Building," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 25, nos. 6 and 7 (Nov-Dec 1882): 266-267 Lane Library catalog record
  21. Record of Students and Instructors, April 1859-1883, Register of Medical Department, University of the Pacific - Box 1.7, Medical Department of the University of the Pacific Collection of publications, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  22. "Graduates: Medical Department of University of Pacific and University College (Medical College of the Pacific) and Cooper Medical College," Preceding Session of 1886, Cooper Medical College Announcements Lane Library catalog record
  23. Henry Gibbons , "Miscellany. Medical College of the Pacific," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 23, no. 6 (Nov 1880): 287 Lane Library catalog record
  24. Registrar, University of California, Summary of Degrees and Certificates Awarded by the University of California 1864 - 1933-34, (Compiled in 1934), University Archives, University of California, Berkeley, CA
  25. Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific and Medical College of the Pacific, 23 May 1870 to 24 May 1874, Box 1.18, vol. 1, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  26. Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical College of the Pacific, 6 Aug 1874 to 22 Nov 1877, Box 1.18, vol. 2, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  27. Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical College of the Pacific, 6 Dec 1877 to 9 Nov 1882, Box 1.18, vol. 3, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  28. Edward Jackson , "Obituary of Adolph Barkan," in MSS 9 - Control File of Adolph Barkan (1845-1935), Lane Medical Library, Lane Medical Archives
  29. J. Marion Read and Mary E. Mathes , History of the San Francisco Medical Society, Vol. 1, 1850-1900 (San Francisco: Published by the San Francisco Medical Society, 1958), pp. 69-70 Lane Library catalog record
  30. Henry Gibbons , "Editorial: Death of Dr. J. E. Prevost," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 19, no. 5 (Oct 1876): 225 Lane Library catalog record
  31. J. Marion Read and Mary E. Mathes , History of the San Francisco Medical Society, Vol. 1, 1850-1900 (San Francisco: Published by San Francisco Medical Society, 1958), pp. 143-150 and pp. 167-169 Lane Library catalog record
  32. Faculty Minutes for 13 February 1875, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 6 August 1874 to 22 November 1877, Box 1.18, vol. 2, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  33. "Faculty Rosters for 1883 and 1884," Announcements, Cooper Medical College Lane Library catalog record
  34. "Postscript: Our Medical Number," San Francisco News Letter (San Francisco: Office 607-615 Merchant Street) 25, no. 24 (Jul 10, 1875): 1-7
  35. J. Marion Read and Mary E. Mathes , History of the San Francisco Medical Society, vol. 1, 1850-1900 (San Francisco: San Francisco Medical Society, 1958), 139-141 Lane Library catalog record
  36. Transactions of the Medical Society the State of California, 1874-75 (Sacramento: H. S. Crocker Co., 1875), p. 6
  37. John B. Trask and David Wooster , eds., "Medical Register of the State of California," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 1, no. 5 (May 1858): 209 Lane Library catalog record
  38. Transactions of the Medical Society the State of California, 1875-76 (Sacramento: Sacramento Leader Printing Office, 1876), p. 20
  39. Transactions of the Medical Society the State of California, 1876-77 (Sacramento: H. A. Weaver, Printer, 1877), pp. 9-11
  40. J. Marion Read and Mary E. Mathes , History of the San Francisco Medical Society, vol. 1, 1850-1900 (San Francisco: San Francisco Medical Society, 1958), 142-143 Lane Library catalog record
  41. Henry Gibbons , "Editorial: Death of J. P. Whitney," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 23, no. 7 (Dec 1880): 320 Lane Library catalog record
  42. "Postscript: Our Medical Number," San Francisco News Letter (San Francisco: Office 607-615 Merchant Street) 25, no. 24 (Jul 10, 1875): 1
  43. "Minutes of Fifth Annual Meeting of California State Medical Society, 21-22 April 1875," Transactions of Medical Society of State of California During Years 1874 and 1875 (Sacramento: H. S. Crocker and Co., 1875), p. 15
  44. "Minutes of Sixth Annual Meeting of California State Medical Society, 19-20 April 1876," in Transactions of Medical Society of State of California During Years 1875 and 1876 (Sacramento: Sacramento Leader Printing Office, 1876), p. 19
  45. Faculty Minutes (Special Meeting) for 25 June 1875, Minutes of Meetings of Faculty of Medical Department of Pacific, 6 August 1874 to 22 November 1877, Box 1.18, vol. 2, Medical College of the Pacific Medical Department, University College, San Francisco, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  46. Official Register of Physicians and Surgeons in the State of California, Sixth Edition (San Francisco: Revised and Published by the Board, 1893), pp. 17-23 Lane Library catalog record
  47. Emmet Rixford , "Obituary of Dr. J. O. Hirschfelder," Box 1.9, Rixford Papers - MSS 8, Lane Medical Library, Lane Medical Archives Lane Library catalog record
  48. Record of Students and Instructors, April 1859-1883, Register of Medical Department, University of the Pacific - Box 1.7, Medical Department of the University of the Pacific Collection of publications, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  49. Official Register of Physicians and Surgeons in the State of California, Sixth Edition (San Francisco: Revised and Published by the Board, 1893), p. 63 Lane Library catalog record
  50. Henry Harris , California's Medical Story (San Francisco: Printed by the Grabhorn Press for J. W. Stacey, Inc., 1932), p. 212 Lane Library catalog record
  51. Frances T. Gardner , "King Cole of California," Part 2, Annals of Medical History, Third Series, Vol. 2, no. 4 (Jul 1940): 342-343 Lane Library catalog record
  52. Constitution and By-Laws of the Alumni Association of the Medical College of the Pacific, vol. 1, item 6, Lane Medical Library Special Collections Lane Library catalog record
  53. Henry Gibbons , "Alumni Association of the Medical College of the Pacific," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 21, no. 6 (Nov 1878): 288 Lane Library catalog record
  54. Levi C. Lane , "Commencement of the Medical College of the Pacific, Nov. 2, 1976," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 19, no. 7 (Nov 1876): 264-265 Lane Library catalog record
  55. Levi C. Lane , "Address delivered by Dr. L. C. Lane, Professor of Surgery, at the Commencement Exercises of the Medical College of the Pacific, Nov. 2, 1976," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 19, no. 7 (Nov 1876): 289-309 Lane Library catalog record
  56. Levi C. Lane , "Letter from Professor Lane. Avignon, France, March 15, 1875," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 16, no. 12 (May 1875): 589-592 Lane Library catalog record
  57. Levi C. Lane , "Medical Men, Hospitals and Schools of Berlin"[Letter from Dr. Lane in Berlin, Prussia, 6 March 1876], Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 18, no. 11 (April 1876): 514-519 Lane Library catalog record
  58. Diaries of L. C. Lane - Boxes 1 and 12, Levi Cooper Lane Personal Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives
  59. Mrs. L. C. Lane , Letters of Travel (San Francisco: A. L. Bancroft and Company, 1886), 140 pp Lane Library catalog record
  60. Fielding H. Garrison , An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th ed. (Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Company, 1929), pp. 588-592 Lane Library catalog record
  61. Fielding H. Garrison , An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th ed. (Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Company, 1929), pp. 514-515 Lane Library catalog record
  62. Levi C. Lane , "Address delivered by Dr. L. C. Lane, Professor of Surgery, at the Commencement Exercises of the Medical College of the Pacific, Nov. 2, 1976," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 19, no. 7 (Nov 1876): 293-294 Lane Library catalog record
  63. "Editorial citing the London Medical Times," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 17, no. 10 (Mar 1875): 507 Lane Library catalog record
  64. Enrollment Document, Royal College of Surgeons of England, 29 January 1875 - Map Case, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  65. Levi C. Lane , "Letter from Professor Lane. Avignon, France, March 15, 1875," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 16, no. 12 (May 1875): 589-592 Lane Library catalog record
  66. Fielding H. Garrison , An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th ed. (Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Company, 1929), p. 496 Lane Library catalog record
  67. Fielding H. Garrison , An Introduction to the History of Medicine, 4th ed. (Philadelphia: W. B. Saunders Company, 1929), p. 569 Lane Library catalog record
  68. Levi C. Lane , "Medical Men, Hospitals and Schools of Berlin[Letter from Dr. Lane. Berlin, Prussia. March 1876]," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 18, no. 11 (Apr 1876): 515-516 Lane Library catalog record
  69. Levi C. Lane , "Fractures of the Femur and their Treatment," Pacific Medical and Surgical Journal 18, no. 12 (May 1876): 545-567 Lane Library catalog record
  70. Diploma, Doctor of Medicine and Surgery, Berlin University, 7 March 1876 - Map Case, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  71. Notebook: Diary for 30 June 1875 to 6 January 1876 - Box 12.13, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, StanfordLane Library catalog record
  72. Emmet Rixford , "Master Surgeons of America: Levi Cooper Lane," Surgery, Gynecology and Obstetrics 56, no. 2 (Feb 1933): 246 Lane Library catalog record
  73. Entry for 31 December 1870, Notebook: Diary for 1870 - Box 1.14, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  74. Notebook - Box 12.14, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  75. Entry for 9 May 1871, Notebook: Diary for 1871 - Box 1.17, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  76. Record Books of Dr. Lane - Boxes 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives Lane Library catalog record
  77. Placard announcing location of Dr. Lane's office and residence - Map Case, Levi Cooper Lane Papers - MSS 18, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
  78. File on Dr. Lane's Bills and Taxes, 1880-1884, Cooper Medical College Financial Documents - Box 4.20, Cooper Medical College Collection of publications, Lane Medical Archives, Stanford Lane Library catalog record
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