Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 17.djvu/13
Progress of Medicine in the South.
areas were monopolized by the large planter, and he generally occupied more space than his agricultural needs required. He believed in what he called "plenty of elbow room." He was opposed to outside intruders, and desired neither the development of towns nor the growth of cities in his vicinity. Criticise this policy as you may, condemn it if you will, I am not engaged in defending it, but am merely stating patent facts, in order to account for the manner in which it retarded the development of medicine. While this was true, yet this state of society produced splendid men and women, probably the grandest on this continent. Culture, grace, elegance, self-reliance, were its legitimate offshoots. Orators, poets, statesmen, soldiers, scientists, lawyers, ministers and physicians, the first and greatest in the whole land, came out of it. What orator have we like Henry or Yancey, what poet like Poe, what scientist like Matthew F. Maury, what statesman like Jefferson, what jurist like Benjamin, what divine like Hoge, what soldier like Stonewall Jackson, what surgeon like Sims? And the women—how can I describe them! They were as cultured as they were refined; they were as beautiful as they were queenly, the loveliest of sweethearts, the noblest of matrons.
Let us look for a moment and see from whence these people of the South came, and what they have done.
The colonial settlers of the southern portion of North America were kindred by ties of blood, by association, and by the laws of common inheritance. They came to this country deeply imbued with the idea of civil liberty. In many instances they were descended from a superior element of the English people. The blood of the cavalier coursed through their veins; they were prepared to organize a government, to undertake the herculean task of creating a country out of chaos. And they accomplished it.
To these settlers were soon afterwards added another stream of emigrants, who came into the South through Maryland and Virginia, and through the seaports of the Carolinas and Georgia. These were the God-loving, tyranny-hating Scotch-Irish, who have left their distinguishing characteristics, to this day, upon the people of every State in the South, from Maryland to the Rio Grande.When the struggle came for the defense of their rights against the mother-country, how quickly her sons took up arms in defense of the common cause, and how nobly they performed their part it is useless to say, for is not the history of the time filled with accounts of their patriotism and achievements? At the council board, on the