ALS dated 4 August 1830, Navy Department. Regarding surgeons.
Navy Department Aug 4 1830
I have to thank you for your polite note
of the 24th ultimo which should have been sooner attended
to, But the intense degree of heat which has per-
vaded our atmosphere for 2 or 3 weeks past, has
produced a languor, that has unfitted me even
for the exertion of composing a short reply to your
I have been engaged since I had the pleasure
of seeing you, in making preparations to bring together
the medical reports of the Navy for the last few years
past, I shall on the first leisure prepare a synop-
sis of their contents for convenient reference.
I have no idea of the merit of these pro-
ductions - they may be worth the labor which
will be necessary for this purpose - or it may be
time thrown away!
It will not be surprising if the Surgeon of the
Navy aware of the neglect which their efforts must
meet with, should have been careless in the composi-
tion of their returns indifferent as to the matter of
which they treat etc. etc.
They know that these papers once committed to
the file in the N[avy] Department are essentially
consigned to oblivion.
We propose in the future to let it be understood
that the medical reports will be examined if found
deserving it, they will be brought to the notice
of the Navy and perhaps the public generally.
This will impart a desire to make them worthy
of public notice.
We shall be pleased to have your views
on the subject of preserving the health of seamen
after enlistment & previously with commencement
of the cruize. Or will you reserve this point
to be introduced into the work which you contem-
plate preparing on the means of promoting the
health of seamen generally? We shall be pleased
to get your views, presented in whatever shape
may be most of use to you.
The Brandy wine is falling out as
rapidly as may be - but I too will learn who is to be
detached for the Surgical Department on that
ship. I flatter myself that you will be
excused from the task!
I am very desirous of visiting Philadelphia in the
next 3 or 4 weeks - but doubt the probability of my
being released from the duties of the office -
If I can find time to make this visit I shall
not fail to inquire for your welfare
Adeiu dear sir & excuse a
servant written in the interval of
official cares and duties
With full consideration &
R. H. Bardford
Dr. Wm. Philip Barton
Asst Surgeon Philadelphia