Cresson TB Sanatorium Remembered

24. Dr. Dixon 1914 Report on the Cresson Sanatorium

The original report can be seen at the following link:


                           OF HEALTH COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA 1914 





WILLIAM G. TURNBULL, M. D.. Medical Director.


Daring the year 1914, one thousand and sixty-seven patients have

been treated in the Cresson Sanatorium. Of these, three hundred and

nine were in the institution on January first, and eleven hundred and

fifty-eight were admitted during the year. Six hundred and sixteen

patients were discharged alive, and eighty-eight were removed by

death, leaving three hundred and sixty-three patients in the institution at the end of December. The average daily census during the year was three hundred and fifty, and the average length of stay of patients was one hundred and thirty-six days.


Of the seven hundred and fifty-eight patients admitted in the coarse

of the year, one hundred and twenty-nine or seventeen per cent., were

incipient; two hundred and ninety-live, or thirty -eight and nine-tenths per cent., moderately advanced ; and three hundred and thirty -four, or forty-four and one-tenth per cent., far advanced.


Of the seven hundred and four patients discharged in the coarse

of the year, one hundred and sixteen were classified as incipient on

admission, two hundred and seventy-six as moderately advanced, and

three hundred and twelve as far advanced.


Of the one hundred and sixteen incipient cases, twelve, or ten and

three-tenths per cent., were discharged as apparently cured; seventy-

three, or sixty-two and nine-tenths per cent., as arrested; thirty or

twenty-five and nine-tenths per cent., as improved; and one, or nine

tenths of one per cent., as progressive.


Of the two hundred and seventy-six moderately advanced cases,

four, or one and four tenths per cent., were discharged as apparently

cured; one hundred, or thirty-six and two-tenths per cent., arrested; one hundred and thirty-eight, or fifty per cent., as improved; thirty-two, or eleven and six-tenths per cent., as progressive; and two, or seven-tenths of one per cent., had died.


Of the three hundred and twelve far advanced cases, nineteen, or

six and one-tenth per cent., were discharged as arrested ; ninety-six, or thirty and eight-tenths per cent., as improved; one hundred and

eleven, or thirty -five and six-tenths per cent., as progressive; and

eighty-six, or twenty-seven and five-tenths per cent., had died.


Altogether, then, of the seven hundred and four patients discharged

within the year, sixteen, or two and three-tenths per cent, were dis

charged as apparently cured; one hundred and ninety-two, or twenty

seven and three-tenths per cent., as arrested; two hundred and sixty-

four, or thirty-seven and five-tenths per cent., as improved ; one hundred and forty-four, or twenty and four-tenths percent., as progressive; and eighty-eight, or twelve and five-tenths per cent, had died.


The average age of the incipient cases discharged alive during the

year was eighteen and five-tenths years; of the moderately advanced

twenty-nine and one-tenth years; of the far advanced twenty -seven

and two-tenths years ; and of patients dying in the institution thirty- two and three-tenths years. The average age of all classes was

twenty-eight and seven-tenths years.


The average patient came from a house with three and three tenths

rooms, and belonged to a family of four and five-tenths members.

The average monthly income of this average family was $53.18.


Of the incipient cases discharged alive in 1914, one hundred and

five gained in weight, nine lost weight, and two were stationary.

The average gain was nine and four-tenths pounds. Of the moderately

advanced cases discharged alive, two hundred and eighteen gained in

weight, forty-seven lost weight, and nine were stationary. The aver-

age gain was eleven pounds. Of the far advanced cases discharged

alive, one hundred and nineteen gained in weight, ninety-four lost

weight, and thirteen were stationary. The average gain was nine'

and four-tenths pounds.


In the early summer of 1914 the Health Colony Club was organized

at Pittsburgh with the object of assisting the State in the work with

the patients of the Pittsburgh Dispensary. According to an arrange-

ment with the Commissioner of Health this club purchased and

equipped ten tents (each fourteen feet square with a double length

fly) to be erected on the grounds of the Sanatorium. These tents

were used for especially needy cases making application at the Pitts-

burgh Dispensary for admission to the Sanatorium and unable to be

cared for at home during the period of waiting for their regular

turn of admission. By arrangement with the Commissioner of Health

the State furnished all care for these patients after they were ad-

mitted to the tents. When their regular turn for admission to the

Sanatorium arrived they were transferred to State beds and other

needy ones were sent by the Pittsburgh Dispensary to take their

places in the tents.


A report on these cases is of peculiar interest because it empha-

sizes tie advantage and in some instances the vital necessity of the

immediate admission of cases after application. Inasmuch as these

cases were selected by the Pittsburgh Dispensary as especially needy

cases it is fair to assume that they were in the opinion of the Dispensary physician patients who were not doing well under Dispensary

treatment and who in all probability would have continued doing

badly during the necessary time of waiting for their regular turn of

admission to the Sanatorium.


Eighty-six patients have been cared for in these tents and after-

wards admitted to the Sanatorium or died in the tents. The average

stay of these patients in the tents before admission to the Senator-

inm was sixty-six and two-thirds days. At the time of regular admis-

sion to the Sanatorium sixty-five of these patients were improved,  fifteen were unimproved and six had died as tent patients. The sixty

five improved patients had gained six hundred and fifty-five pounds

in weight, an average gain of ten pounds each. In short, oat of

eighty-six patients who were doing badly at home and most of whom

would probably have continued to do badly for an average time of nine

and a half weeks, while waiting for admission to the Sanatorium,

sixty-five were admitted to the Sanatorium at the regular time mach

Improved and with an average gain in weight of ten pounds.


A society of friends of the Monessen Dispensary has also brought

and equipped two tents to be used in the same way as the Pittsburgh



During the year attention has been paid to improving the social

condition of our patients and furnishing them with harmless recrea-

tion or employment. Results are already evident in a better feeling

on the part of the patients toward the institution, greater cheerful-

nests and an increased length of stay in the institution. The children

have been organized into a school under the care of capable teachers,

who are also patients, and an outdoor school house has been built

for their use. The school work has been carefully graded according

to the physical condition of each child, no child being allowed to

woi^ more than two hours a day. All idea of competitive work ban

been kept out of the school. All the ordinary branches have been

tan^t to a necessary extent but particular attention has been paid to

nature work and manual training. The study of flowers, trees, birds,

butterflies, and insects has been attractive and beneficial.


During the season when such out -door work is impossible, basketry,

nig weaving, cutting and sewing, darning and patching, have been

subjects receiving special attention.


Glasses in sewing, fancy work, quilting, rug-weaving, and knitting

have been organized for the women.


Wood working has been introduced to a limited extent for the bovH

and men and it is hoped that with increased equipment it may be pos-

sible to develop this occupation still further during the coming year


By their own efforts our patients and employees have raised money

for the purchase of an excellent moving picture machine and a piano.

• Through the kindness of the Pittsburg Photoplay Company we have

been famished four reels of interesting pictures each week and have

therefore been able to enjoy a moving picture entertainment weekly.


In addition to this, several amateur dramatic entertainments have

been given by the patients daring the year. There is need of a special

bailding to be used for amusement purposes. At present the only

available place is the lai^ dining room for patients, and the ose of

this room is inconvenient and causes a great amount of extra work: on

the part of the housekeeping department.


An effort is being made to place the patients of the institution more

and more on a self-governing basis. The conduct and discipline of the

patients in all social gatherings has been successfully entrusted to a

committee selected by the patients themselves.


In the children's department the self-governing idea has been far-

ther developed and practically all matters of discipline are now set-

tled by the children themselves under proper guidance in their own

organized court.


An account of the important changes in our medical staff together

with a full list of the staff and the other employees of the Sanatorium during the past year may be found in that part of the general report of the Commissioner which is reserved for these matters.


The patients of the institution have reason to thank their many

friends for the numerous and useful donations which have been re-

ceived during the year. Not merely at Christmas time but all through

the year we have received many gifts that have shown not only good

will and liberality but also Intelligent thought for the real needs of

our patients. In several places societies have been organized for the

purpose of helping and we have been asked to report all personal

needs of our patients to these societies.


The following is a partial list of donors, as it is quite impracticable to include all the small gifts which have come to us.


Contributories for the Tear 1M4, to the Cresson Sanatorium (or Tuberculosis,

Miss Hilda Bard, Cresson— Stockings.

H. H. Carter, Bloomberg — Magazines.

Mrs. Samuel G. Dixon, Bryn Maw r— Clothing, books and games.

Mrs. Sylvester Eckenrode, Turtle Creek— Magazines.

Bpworth League (Miss Pender), Blaireville— Literature.

Miss Myrtle EhrenFeld, Lilley—Clothing and onting flannel.

Idiss Rachd Krfe, Vandergrift— Literature.

First Presbyterian Church (Rev. C. C. Hayes, Pastor), Johnstown— Clothing,


ttooks,' games, candy and oranges.

Hr. Jesse Pay, Altoona— Stockings.

Mrs. Gabler, MoneBsen — Clothing.

Mrs. H. B. Garland, Jeanette— Flowers.

B. Gross, cresson— Clothing,

Mrs. John Herr, Cresson— Stockings and outing flanod.

Mrs. Hildebrand, Cresson — Clothing.

John B. Hoyt, Cresson— Magazines.

William H. HoTStmaun Co., Philadelphia—Copies of Knitting and Crocheting

Manuel. Uis. 0. J. Ht«ne, Cresson— Clothing and magazines.

Mrs. Fred J. Kammerer, Cresson— Clothing, ,-, .

Mai. H. E. LovDUDi Cresson— Clothing, onting flannl and literature, n AjOOQ C

Mrs. John A. Lewis, Bbessbarg— Clothing and literature.

Mrs, Bllia Lewis, I.*trobe— literature.

Miss Marseret McUuUin, Johnstown— Literature.

William Mallingly, Wilmington , Del.— Shoes. <

Methodist Episcopal Church, Johnstown— Literature.

Mrs. H. I , McGirk, Cresson— Clothing. ,

Mrs. O. B. fllcFail,, Pittsburgh— Tarns and clothing. I

Mrs. G. S. Mitchell, Cresson- Magazines, stockings and outing flannel.

Epworth league (Mise Orgill), Jennette— Copies of New Testament.

Mrs. H. M. Potter, Cresson— Clothing.

Miss Janet Simpson, (Epworth Ijeagiie), Indiana— Bibles and reading material

Mrs. Charles Sleep, Johnstown —-Subscription "Woman's Missionary Frienil " {

Mrs. John Smith. Cresson- Clothing.

Nathao Stoiick, Cresson— Candy boxes.

Mrg. Blair C. Seeds, Cresson— Flowers and orsngea.

Mrs. A. T. Sohleigh, CraEton— Clothing, books and toys.  

Rev. Paul Wejand. Jeannette— Reading matter.

Wm. F. Gable. Altoona— Flags.


Johnstown Democrat, Johnstown— Flags and bunting.

Geo, K. Kline, Johnstown— Flags.  

North American, Philadelphia— Flags.




Contributions for Moving Picture Machine and Piano

Mrs Kate Brady. Butler.

J. M, Buck, Cresson.

Miss Lizzie Conley, Cresson.

E. D. Clark, Altoona.

C. 8. Clark, Bellwood.

H. P. Davis, Cresson.

First National Bank, Cresson.

Dr. Joseph D. Fiudley.

Miss Hheta Freiburger. Pittsburg.

Hn. D. L. Oilleipie, Plittsburg

Dr. S. P. Glover, Altoona.

B. Gross, Cresson.

Dr. H. D. Hockenberry, Butler.

Mr. T. R. Hartley, Pittsburgh.

Mrs. David Kirk, Pittsburgh.

Kleper Brothers. Altoona.

Ura. James H. Lockhart, Pittsburgh

Miss Minnie Mobley, Pittsburgh.

Mrs. L. H. Mason, Jr. Pittsburgh.

J. F. McCartin, Cresson.

Carl Olines, Altoona.

O. J. Pensyl. Altoona,

Ms. Thos. E. Pollard. Pittsburgh.

Miss Anna Reyraer, Pittsburgh.

E. L. Study. Cresson.


Miss Helen C. Trump. Pitsburgh,

Miss Margaret S. Walker, Pulaski.

J. a. Zenny, Cresson.


Special attention has been paid during the year to the utilization

of by-products of the institution. A soap factory has been built when*

all the soap used in scrubbing and cleaning the establishment is now

made from the waste grease of the kitchen and butcher shop.-


AU the bones from the butcher shop, kitchen, and dining rooms are

now saved and ground. Part of this is needed as feed on the poultry

farm, the rest is stored and used in mixing fertilizer for the farm and



The pig farm has been so developed that it consumes all the garbage

from the kitchen and dining room Two tanks of Ave hundred

gallons capacity each have been installed at the pig farm in connec-

tion with a Steam boiler, and all the garbage is hauled to these tanks

where it la thoroughly mixed and boiled before being fed to the pigs.

About a hundred pigs have been raised during the year.


The following work has been done in the course of the year:

The stone entrance gate and gate house have been completed

and an ornamental stone watering trough has been built on the

State Highway opposite our entrance gate.


A fence of twisted ribbon wire has been built around our property

and a fence run across our land so as to shut off the area used for

the collection of spring water.


The conduit for the power wires and telephone line to the pumping

station has been finished and put in service.


Several other springs have been piped and added to our spring

water supply.


A vegetable cellar of good appearance and capable of holding

two thousand bushels has been built about a hundred feet back of

the dining building.


A laying house to take care of a thousand bens has been added

to the poultry farm. A brooder house with a capacity of a thousand

chicks, and twelve colony houses, each eight by ten feet in size, have also been built. The results with the poultry farm have been en-

couraging and it is hoped that further additions may be made during

the coming year.


A pig farm has been made in the field near the sewage disposal

plant. Extensive runs have been laid out and fenced, and portable

houses about six by twelve feet in size, have been placed in these runs. A concrete feeding floor a hundred and twenty feet long with concrete troughs has been built and a suitable roof built over it, A feed house with boiler and tanks and a slaughter house adjacent to it have been built.


An out-door school house has been put up for the use of the chil-



The plaster walls in the hospital, connecting corridor, dining rooms

and first floor of the administration building have been much im-

proved by two coats of buff paint. The floors in the same parts

of the buildings have been reflUed, a strip of congoleum laid where

there is much walking, and the remainder of the floor finished with



Much improvement has been made in the appearance of our

grounds by grading, sodding, and planting the parts adjacent to the

hospital and administration building and the two camps. The

flower beds in the women's camp were much admired by every one

visiting this and much enjoyed by oar patients. Fifteen hundred and

thirty feet of concrete walk were built in the men's camp and along

the connecting corridor. A board walk was built from the entrance

gate to the power and laundry building. Considerable fallen and

dead timber was cleared out of our woods and sawed at a. mill in-

stalled on our grounds. Id all, 167,796 board feet of lumber were

sawed here during the year and used in the construction work. Stone

drains have£ been placed in the hillside adjacent to the State Hi^-

way and the numerous springs making this unfit for cultivation

have been drained away. This field has been broken up and will

be added to our tillable land.


Two teams of horses were purchased daring the year and will be

used in hauling the coal to the institution.