Page:Southern Historical Society Papers volume 36.djvu/109

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93
History of Chimbordzo Hospital.

United States, so that he might issue requisitions, etc., and have the same filled as any other medical director in the United States army. As General Lee had not then surrendered, Dr. McCaw respectfully declined the proffered appointment, but voluntarily continued to perform all the duties incident to the position he held, and never solicited anything at all from them other than the passes in and out of the lines.

When we consider the size of this great military hospital, the number of soldiers admitted, treated, furloughed, discharged and buried; its successful work for nearly four years; the perfect discipline, order and harmony that existed from its establishment to its close; the immense amount of work done; the difficulties always attending the securing of supplies for such a large body of invalids, especially towards the closing days of the Confederacy, and also the generous rivalry between other posts or hospitals located in Richmond; and lastly, the comparatively low mortality, we cannot but accord to Dr. James B. McCaw, medical director of the five Chimborazo hospitals, and its efficient commandant, the highest praise, and concede that he was in fact and in deed "primus inter pares." It is my greatest pleasure to offer this tribute to my chief, and to one of the grandest men in our profession, "Clarum et venerabile nomen." Towering physically and mentally above his associates, and quoting from one of his admirers, he was "Princely Dr. James B. McCaw, sweet, gentle, tender, and true," and I shall add, "brave, generous, and loyal; just, honorable, and upright, an exemplar worthy of emulation;" teacher, philosopher, scientist, editor, and physician, over sixty years devoted to the acquisition of knowledge and presenting the truth as acquired to his beloved pupils in class and lecture-rooms; a magnificent physique, graceful and polished in manner, with a great amount of personal magnetism; in speech, clear, happy in illustration, chaste, humorous, and pathetic, sometimes epigrammatic, a boone comrade around the social board, an ardent admirer of the beautiful, together with high, cultivated, artistic taste. His masterly handling as editor of advances in all branches of medicine, editorials, reviews, and original articles, the midnight research and investigations in new scientific fields, his active professional life for six decades as surgeon, ob-