John Calvin Blue, M.D. Collection, 1872-1892

Manuscript Collection #1113

  • Descriptive Summary
     
    Title: John Calvin Blue, M.D. Collection
    Creator: Blue, John Calvin
    Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
    Language: English
    Abstract: Collection of two bound manuscript account books (1872-1892) of a physician practicing in Cameron and Carthage, Moore County, North Carolina, during the late 19th century and for part of that time in partnership with Calvin Graves, a pharmacist, including bills and receipts for office visits, medicines, and vague descriptions of treatments. One volume contains an alphabetical index of patient names for locating specific patient accounts. Also includes advertisements and postcards directed to physicians and/or pharmacists as well as a loose receipt.
    Extent: 0.099 Cubic feet, 1 box, 6 items ,
  • Description
     

    The collection consists of patient account books and loose advertisements and receipts. The patient account books are bound ledgers (1872-1892) documenting Blue’s medical practice in Cameron and Carthage, Moore County, North Carolina. The ledger books document brief descriptions of medical treatments administered by Blue to patients, as well as charges and payments made by patients for Blues’ services. Also included is a small amount of medical advertisements and one loose receipt.

    Patient Account Books The ledger in folder 1113.1.a records the accounts of 216 patients between the years of 1875-1891. This volume includes an alphabetical index consisting of tabbed pages alphabetized in typescript located at the front of the ledger. The year the patient was treated is recorded beside the name of the patient. The month and sometimes the date are recorded. Descriptions of treatments are usually vague and limited to such descriptions as "attention to wife," "visit," and "one box of pills." Debts for treatment are also recorded and added over time as more treatments occur. Payments are deducted from balances or marked "paid." Treatments typically cost between $1.00 and $12.00 though other amounts and balances occur. Some patients have been moved to new pages and a note of the page to which they have been moved is recorded on the older page. Two items were removed from the inside front cover of volume 1113.1.a and moved to folder 1113.1.c. For ease of reference, a supplemental index is provided below giving name of patient, page number found on and year of treatment.

    The ledger in folder 1113.1.b records the accounts of 200 patients between the years of 1883-1892. This ledger is organized similarly to the previous ledger, but does not contain an index. Some patient names are duplicated frequently throughout the last pages of the volume. Most patients contain the year and sometimes the date of treatment, but the years are not recorded as frequently in this ledger as in the previous ledger. Descriptions of treatments are again rather vague and limited to such examples as "attention to son," "potash," and "medicine." Debts for treatment are also recorded and added over time as more treatments occur. Payments are deducted from account balances or marked "paid." While most patients paid with cash, it’s interesting to note that one patient appears to have paid her debt in bricks. Some patients have been moved to new pages and a note of the page to which they have been moved is recorded on the older page. Notable entries concern Sheriff W. M. Black, a visit to the sick at the poor house paid for by the county and treatment of sick persons in jail. Two items were removed from the inside front cover of volume 1113.1.b and moved to folder 1113.1.d.

    Loose Advertisements and Receipts Folder 1113.1.c contains two items removed from the inside front cover of volume 1113.1.a. One item is a typescript post card advertising a sale on potash. The other is a handwritten financial account from Mrs. Ren(?) Matthews to Dr. J. C. Blue dated January 1883. Folder 1113.1.d contains two items removed from the inside front cover of volume 1113.1.b. Both items are undated typescript advertisements. One item is torn but contains several paragraphs printed on blue paper. The item printed on white paper appears to be an advertisement offering samples of pharmaceutical envelopes or prescription papers.

  • Biographical / Historical Note
     

    It is presumed that John Calvin Blue was born around the year 1848. The 1880 census lists Blue as age 32 and married to Mary Evaline McNeill, age 22. This record also lists the couple as residing in Carthage Village, North Carolina with Blue’s father-in-law, Alexander H. McNeill, age 48, and a Clerk of Superior Court.

    Source: Obtained online via Ancestry.com.

    Blue practiced as a physician in Moore County, North Carolina between 1872 and 1892. He cared for many patients, most of which resided in the communities of Carthage and Cameron. Blue treated both males and females of all ages. The background of Blue’s patients ranged from prisoners, “poor house” residents, local ministers and included a sheriff, W. M. Black. Blue’s medical procedures included pulling teeth and setting bones. He also prescribed medicine including potash and castor oil, and for a time, he worked with pharmacist Calvin Graves.

  • Administrative Information
     
    Accessions Information

    September 12, 2007, 2 items, 0.099 cubic feet; Account Books (1875-1886) of a physician practicing in Cameron and Carthage, Moore County, North Carolina, during the late 19th century and for part of that time in partnership with Calvin Graves, a pharmacist, including bills and receipts for office visits, medicines; and treatments; includes index; also postcards, clippings, receipts & other loose items. Manuscript volumes. Donor: Alexander M. Williams

    Acquisition Information

    Gift of Alexander M. Williams

    Access Restrictions

    No restrictions

    Copyright Notice

    Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

    Preferred Citation

    John Calvin Blue, M.D. Collection (#1113), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

    Processing Information

    Encoded by Mark Custer, January 2, 2008

    Processed by Jennifer Vinciguerra, May 2010

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