By Wm. L. Morgan, M.D
There is no one subject that occupies so much space in modern literature of every kind. As well as in the teachings and research of the highest educational institutions of the civilized world; as that of the germ theory of disease.
No subject has caused more fear, dread and suffering among all classes of the human race than the science of bacteriology and the literature regarding dangerous germs, microbes, bacteria and ptomaines.
About four years ago, at a tubercular convention held under the auspices of one of the leading universities of America. Which was made very interesting by lectures delivered by professor of bacteriology from several of the world’s most nored universities, there was given this very intelligible definition of the organic germ: “A living vegetable organism from decomposed, dead of organic matter,” and it was further explained that dead tissue and other organic matter, when decomposed, formed a soil to produce microbes.
It was also especially explained that microbes may be, and often are, in the systems of healthy persons, but harmless until there is a susceptibility in the system for there operations, all of which was clearly explained in scholarly language and in a manner, consistent with sound philosophy and in harmony with what is well known of the propagation of larger plants, from the planting of the seed, through the growth, ripening of the fruit to the death, decomposition and fertilizing of the soil for another crop, and their relation to, and connection with, the decomposition, or the dead organic matter in living human organisms. This when carefully analyzed by the unbiased reasoner, will be found of deep interest and great value to the botanist and agriculturist, and it will be found that before the microbe can do harm there has to be the work of another agent to prepare the soil to sprout the microbe sees; as there has been no putrefaction that could be no ptomaines. And hence, as neither microbes nor ptomaines could be present or do damage till the soil is prepared suitable to the growth of the specific microbe; therefore it is perfectly clear that there must be another agent or factor preceding the microbe which deranges life and causes a morbid condition, and the death of cells and molecules which decompose to form the said soil.
We now see, from lectures and literature of the highest order, that microbes and ptomaines are to the dangerous germs of disease, and we trust look further.
From recent history of malarial and yellow fevers in new Orleans, also Havana and other cities in Cuba, Panama and the isthmian cities. We find that when the miasmatic fevers were very disastrous, the United States army force cleaned the cities drained the swamps, where vegetation was decaying. And buried all dead animal matter, to get rid of the invisible emanations which were constantly given off, with the gases, from the decomposing masses of filth of various kinds and then yellow fever soon disappeared. A short time ago, in our own city and epidemic of typhoid fever broke out in Hampered and Wood bury, as we all remember, which was attributed to germs in the milk, but speedily disappeared when the neglected part of the city was cleaned and the decaying masses of matter that produced the miasms were removed.
Cases are too numerous to relate in this paper where fevers and diphtheria have infested a small locality or even a single house for a long time, in which when a mass of decaying vegetation and annual matter was removed, and a general cleaning up took place, the sickness at once disappeared, to stay away as long as there is no decomposing matter nearby to produce that vital emanation to be inhaled with the air breathed that deranges life and places the entire system in a morbid state and creates a soil for microbes.
With all this, what could be clearer to the mind of the unprejudiced thinker than that invisible miasms from masses of decomposing organic matter are the dangerous germs that first invade the healthy system and cause the morbid state and all the follows, and from the unquestionable high authorities referred to we know that there can be no possible danger from microbes bacilli or ptomaines, causing or generating sickness, and that the invisible miasms from decomposing dead organic matter of any kind are The Dangerous Germs.
This epitome of the subject is not complete without saying that with infectious. Contagious and inoculable diseases the disease dynamics and not matter acts on the life force through the peripheral nerves and from the point of inception deranges the functions of life, causing a morbid condition in blood and tissue, which condition is made known to the observer through the organism.