Patrick Pollak

Antiquarian and Rare Books, Manuscripts, Images and
Related Items


 Click on an image to enlarge it. Click an enlarged image to view the previous/next image. 

The List of the Benefactors and Annual Subscribers with the ANNUAL REPORTS, from AUGUST 1846 until June 1900, inclusive.

Each report comprises 4 pages, folio, with a Supplementary leaf Medical Report for the year 1898. In cloth-backed marbled boards, rubbed and worn at the corners, the stitching broken at one point and a few leaves coming loose, the text corners a little worn and the fore-edges nicked and occasionally chipped in the margin, the Report for 1888 torn along the centre of both leaves without loss, one leaf with a piece lost from the top margin not affecting the text, occasional marginal damp-staining, some ink annotation.

*The North Devon Infirmary, a charitable trust, was established in 1828 in Barnstaple. It was replaced by a modern hospital in the 1980s. The Reports list all the benefactors and subscribers, in order of generosity, give the names of the medical roll, provide accounts of the AGMs and the secretary's Reports, list expenditure and income, the Resident Medical Officer's Report, and detail the motions of thanks to all who helped during the year. In all, the Reports are a detailed and vital historical source for the development of the local, voluntary hospital system in England. However, they are even more useful when dovetailed with other sources. For example, the Secretary's Report for the first year here, 1846, states - 'We regret to find that the affairs of the Institution are not in so satisfactory a state as the Report at the last General Meeting induce the Subscribers to infer. In the absence of a sufficient supervision by the late Auditor, considerable laxity appears to have occurred both in the collection of the income of the Institution and the payment of its expenditure; the result of which is, that large arrears of subscriptions have been suffered to accumulate, and a serious amount in trademen's bills, with which the accounts had been debited, remain unpaid.' This veiled statement is given clarity by the account in the same year in the North Devon Journal, that the Secretary and House Surgeon of the North Devon Infirmary, J.Knox, commited suicide with cyanide on the day his accounts were to be examined. In 1846, the Consulting Physician was Dr. Britton, the Physician was Dr. Richard Budd, the Surgeons were Mr. Curry and Mr. T. S. Law, the House Surgeon and Apothecary was Mr. Morgan, and the Surgeon-Dentist was Mr. Borlase. In 1856, the post of Consulting Physician appears to have been eliminated and Richard Budd F.R.C.P. [1809-1896] was made the senior physician, retaining this post until his death. Interestingly, he became the most generous of all patrons in 1883, donating an annual £400 until he died in 1896. His successors were Drs. C. H. Gamble and J. Harper. Each Report also gives a brief inventory of patient turn-over; overall, by the year 1900, the number of in-patients since the foundation in 1828, was recorded as 34,309 - the number of out-patients, 105,208.

Date Published:

Stock No. 56466

Price: 1,500.00