Page:Our Sister Republic - Mexico.djvu/129

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123
THE HOSPICIO DE GUADALAJARA.

Passing one of the large rooms I noticed the sign "Operating Room" over the door, and looking in through the open grating, saw a party of surgeons and students busily engaged in dissecting a corpse, so thoroughly occupied in fact that they paid no attention to our presence. This part of the work was carried on much more openly than with us, and seemed to be regarded quite as a matter of course by all present.

Grander in proportions and conception than even the Belan Hospital, is the great Hospicio de Guadalajara, the equal of which cannot be found on the American Continent. This was founded a century ago by Bishop Juan Cruz Ruis Cabanais, a man of great wealth and piety, who endowed it magnificently. His full length portrait, in which he is represented standing, in full Canonicals, before a table, on which rests a diagram of, the complete structure, just as we see it to-day, and holding in his hands the purse containing the endowment of the institution, hangs in the chapel of the establishment now. What it cost to erect a structure covering six or eight acres of ground, with walls from three to eight feet in thickness, inclosing no less than twenty-two court-yards, each surrounded by magnificent corridors or portals, and furnish it throughout, I cannot tell, but it must have been millions of dollars, even in a country where labor costs next to nothing.

This establishment was greatly run down a few years ago, but through the efforts of the late Señor Matute, and other patriotic and public-spirited citizens, it has been regenerated, and now holds within its walls sixteen-hundred human beings, from the foundling just brought in from the street, to the young woman or man ready to go forth into the world as a teacher, artizan,