F. D. Edgerton medical journal
Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267
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Overview and metadata sections
Dr. Francis Daniels Edgerton (1835-1905) served as the physician to the girls at the Connecticut Industrial School for Girls. It appears he also maintained a general practice in the town of Middletown. Edgerton was born on August 26, 1838, in East Hampton, Connecticut. He married Amelia Dupont Cruger on November 5, 1868. They had three children: Henry Cruger, Francis Cruger, and John Warren.
Mark Edward Armstrong et al., "Francis Daniels Edgerton," The Edgerton Database, http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~edgerton/FrancisDaniels1838.htm (accessed on November 27, 2007).
The Connecticut Industrial School for Girls was opened on June 30, 1870, as a charitable institution for the reformation and protection of girls whose home environments were thought to put them at risk for a life of crime or social degeneracy.
The school was built on a 46-acre farm in Middletown, Connecticut. Its buildings were named after individuals who had donated money to the school. The two original buildings were called the Pratt and Street Homes. The Allyn and Rogers Homes were added after 1874.
According to a history of the county published in 1884, the students living at the school were "viciously inclined girls between the ages of eight and sixteen years. This class includes the stubborn and unruly; truants, vagrants, and beggars; those in danger of falling into vicious habits; and those who have been guilty of punishable offenses but who are not deemed incorrigible." At the school, the girls received both a general education and the vocational skills they would need to support themselves honestly.
In 1943, ownership of the school was transferred to the state, and it was renamed Long Lane School. In 1972, it was combined with the school for boys. It closed in 2003.
Henry Whittemore, "Town and City of Middletown; Part V,"The History of Middlesex County 1635-1885(New York: J. H. Beers & Co., 1884; Dunham - Wilcox - Trott - Kirk), http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.com/~jdevlin/town_hist/middletown_history5.htm (accessed on November 27, 2007).Government Information Unit, "Long Lane School," Connecticut State Library, http://www.cslib.org/agencies/longlaneschool.htm (accessed on November 27, 2007).
This medical journal was kept by Dr. Francis Daniels Edgerton for the Connecticut Industrial School for Girls and documents his diagnosis and treatment of the students' medical conditions from 1875 to 1883.
The medical journal contains autograph entries by Dr. Francis Daniels Edgerton documenting his visits to the students at the Connecticut Industrial School for Girls from 1875 to 1883. The dated entries document the illnesses and other medical conditions of girls living in the school and included their symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment. The entries feature the girls' names and occasionally note their ages and hometowns.
The book was kept at the school in the superintendent's office. Edgerton noted that the entries were "hastily made" and some visits were omitted because the book was unavailable. Major medical occurrences documented in the journal include a measles epidemic from February to March of 1877, an epidemic of "brocho-laryngial colds" [sic] in January 1879, and the simultaneous development of the symptoms of hysteria in two girls in September 1879.
Most entries contain an impersonal record of each girl's condition and treatment, but several also contain more information about the general conditions at the school. For example, in the February 22, 1880, entry, Edgerton suggested that primary causes of disease at the school are overcrowding and the wet feet the girls got from walking between buildings. He recommended that the school board build a hospital building and improve the conditions of the walkways.
The entries for 1881 are more abbreviated, containing only names, dates, and very brief notes. The final pages of the volume also contain a list of the girls vaccinated in June and July of 1881 as well as the success of each vaccine.
Papers laid in at the end of the volume contain a letter "To the Honorable Board of Directors of the Connecticut Industrial School for Girls" remarking on the increased health of girls during fiscal year ending December 1881, additional sheets of entries dated from 1881 to 1883, and papers summarizing the number and type of illnesses for these years. The journal has been rebound in buckram-covered boards.
Processed and encoded by Kate Hand, November 2007. Updated by E. Evan Echols, March 2014.
- Women--Education--United States--History--19th century
- Medicine--United States--History--19th century
- Reformatories for women--Connecticut--History--19th century
- Physician and patient--United States--History--19th century
- Students--Health and hygiene--History--19th century
- University of Delaware Library Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
- Finding Aid Date
- 20 March 2014
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research.
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