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Mephitic Memphis

Mephitic Memphis image
Parent Issue
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OCR Text

The National Board of Ilealtl) bas been investigating the present eondition of' the ycllow lever plague spot, Mouiphis, and bas gathered the most extensivo informatioo with regard to the causes vbioh inereased the diseuse ia tliat city, with the assistance of large and competent corps of United .States inspectora and civil engineers. Thcy have cxanjined every Iumm; in the place froni garret to cellar, every yard, street and alley, and now know the eondition of Mmnphu in all lts parts. In two years that city lms lust nearly $8,h(,000 and buried 0,000 of her people. Filthy gutters, bad drainage and accumulated garbage were the causo of' it all. The natural ady&ntaees f'or drainage are excellent. It bhould bc one of the best drained cities in the country, whereas it is not drainod at all. Kvery one knows that it rita un u bluff which Blopeg down to the Mississippi Uiver on one side, and to the gullied .stream, the Hayou Gayoso, on the other. Tbis Bayou Gayoso U blaraed f'or all the sickness that bas occurred in tbat city ; and there is thrown garbage and all conceivable s])f cie8 of filth ; but tbere are njiniature Bayou Gayoscs in almost every street, alley and byway in .Meuiphis, which are infinitely more detrimental to tlie public bcaltb than the Bayou Gayoso. The Bayou Gayoso could easily be sewered and drained, just like our covered sewers, its t-ides grassed and sloped, and then it would be an ornament rather tlian an offense. Tlie greatest and most disgusting sanitary defect is r hut the large stores of' the city, wliich can bo ooaoted by hundreds, liave no proper closet.s as al), but siuiply provide as substitutos pits in the cellars Froui one to Cour such pits can be f'ound in hundreds of the larger stores. Over many of the stores people live. The blocks of ground on whioli the stores stand are completely covered by the buildings, and this we suppose, was the reason why the cellars were used in this manner. From tho cellars arise the disgusting odors which fill the building and come out through the sidewalk gratings, shakine tlie fingcr of death in the faces of pagsera-by. These stores and wholesale establishments are owned, of course, by the largest capitalista and propirty-lioiders- tbc ricli men- of ihe city. They are the cause of the epidemio. Very little bedding, clothing, furniture, earpets, etc, used by yellow f'ever patients has been destroyed. Storeroonj upon storeroqm is ítacked with muttresííes tatuarted with the poison of fever patients, and earpets, sofas and chairs stuffed with yellow fever gernis. The inhabitants are too mean to burn up an old inf'ected blanket. 11' they were let alone thcy would uso ihese filthy things. They want the United States to supply tliem with new furniturc, and blankets and bedding. [f the National Health Boanl bas its way an epidemie wil] not Memphis. i deeided di-finiiciy lo stamp it out. t'Xtic' National Board win récoAmènd in it?i report the Waring systcm of .■ewerage and drainage, which is doubtless the best, cheapest and simplest for a sniall city, and least likely to get out of order, and this System, at a cost of $1,250,000. will probably be put into Meiuphis. They caunot easily get this systcm out of order, and they would destroy in a short time anything which could be injured. The whole oost of cieansing and redceming the city will be $1,000,000, and the United States can and will do the work by spring. The investigations are complctcd. The cieansing wqrk will begin as soon as cold weather sets in. Meraphis says she can pay only $100,000 toward the work. Tennessee sliould pay the rest, but if she refuses the adjoining States will be appealed to. If they do not furnish the money forthwith, the United States will in all probability think that it is best to advance the funds.