Letter to J.H. Bowers M.D., my old friend, 19 March 1876

Smith, Ashbel, 1805-1886.
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Letter informing Dr. Bowers that he was conferred an honorary degree of M.D. from the Texas Medical College and that Dr. Smith would be mailing it to him.

Evergreen, Harris Cy. Texas, March 19, 1876 John H.L. Bowers M.D., My old friend, It gives me pleasure to inform you that the Texas Medical College at the Annual Commencement and conferring of degrees on the 15th xxx conferred on you the honorary degree of M.D. Medicinal Doctor it is an honorary degree, but as the same degree was years ago conferred on you by the Medical College of Memphis, the present one is styled an honorary ad eunden to xx to the same as you already possess._ I have your degree here and will forward it by mail on my first visit to Houston. The faculty have no engraved blanks except those designed for ordinary graduates so they filled up your degree on one of these parchments. This is frequently done. The Medical College is always tolerably successful but a new impulse is now being given to it the chair of obstetrics vacant by death of Prof. Callaway has just been filled by the election of Dr. Paine who appears to me to be eminently competent. The Chair of Anatomy vacant by the death of Dr Jorgerson will be filled by an election on the 5th April next. The Board of Examiners meet at Marshall at the same time as the State Medical Association. The course of lectures will open next fall with a full corps of Professors and all appliances. It is not indispensable for you to write a thesis on the occasion of your degree; but it is customary. Let me suggest that you write a sketch or account of the Yellow Fever, as it appeared in Columbus. It may be as general as you please, but the more you go into details the more satisfactory it will be. Such a paper from you will be very acceptable and if permitted by you, it will be published in Prof. Rankin’s Journal. For my own part, not practicing medicine I am out of the profession, and take no interest in personal xxx but most xxx of the profession considers D. Harrisons denial that the disease was Yellow Fever, as an absurdity. I saw vials of black vomit exhibited by him at Dallas. They were unmistakably ordinary specimens of ordinary black vomit of a common type of yellow fever. I have nothing new to report about Evergreen everything comfortable and sufficiently prosperous my own health very good for my years 70 the 13th August. We have had a violent storm today_ very high water now, 10 o’ clock at night, the water is subsiding under a xxx._ no damage done as I can hear of. Can you come down and see me say at the state Fair in May?_ yourself and as many of your family as you can bring. By the way would it not be well for you to become a member of the State Medical Association? The Association appears to me a permanent institution_ it may hereafter be a source of pride and satisfaction to your children. The annual meeting of the Association this year is at Marshall and commences April 4th._ I beg to be remembered kindly to all your family and to Mrs. Darden. Ever your old friend, Affectionately, Ashbel Smith
Evergreen (Tex.), Baytown (Tex.)