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OLD USS JAMESTOWN PHOTO & MARINE HOSPITAL SERVICE c1900

FOUR old historical items related to the Spanish American War / Philippine Insurrection era Marine Hospital Service, including TWO official letters from the Treasury Department, and TWO old cardboard-mounted photographs (5.5 x 6.5”). All four items came together and both photos have identical prints, emulsion, & cardboard mounts. The four items are as follows:

--The first photo shows a Spanish American War era c1898-1900 view of the stern & starboard side of the three-masted sailing ship U.S.S. Jamestown, which during this era was used in the Maritime Hospital Service of the Navy, and stationed at Fortress Monroe, Old Point Comfort, Virginia.

--The second photo shows a launch or longboat carrying two men wearing uniforms. The men are probably Marine Hospital Reserve officers / sailors.

--CIRCULAR LETTER with letterhead of the TREASURY DEPARTMENT, Office of the Supervising SURGEON GENERAL MARINE HOSPITAL SERVICE (1-page, 8 x 10.5”). Emblem of the MHS printed in upper left of the page. Washington, June 27, 1902. Concerns Requests for Leave of Absence for Marine Hospital Service Officers on Foreign Detail. Mimeographed copy signature of Walter Wyman.

--AMENDMENT TO QUARANTINE REGULATIONS, 1904 Department Circular No. 30. Public Health and Marine Hospital Service. Treasury Department, Office of the Secretary, Washington March 30, 1904, (1-page, 8 x 10.5”). Robert B. Armstrong, Assistant Secretary.

All items in good condition as shown in scan (includes enlarged details).

“The Marine-Hospital Service was created by act of 16 July 1798 & required the Department of the Treasury to "provide for the relief and maintenance of disabled seamen." Eventually, physicians in the service were required to be a mobile work force stationed where the service was in need. By 1878 the Marine Hospital Service had begun to lose its identity as a relief organization solely for sick seamen. The prevalence of major epidemic diseases such as smallpox, yellow fever, and cholera spurred Congress to enact a national law in 1878 to prevent the introduction of contagious and infectious diseases into the United States. As a result, the functions of the Service expanded greatly to include the supervision of national quarantine, disinfection, & immunization programs, the medical inspection of immigrants. the prevention of interstate spread of disease, and general investigations in the field of public health, such as that of YELLOW FEVER EPIDEMICS. The hospitals came to provide a key monitoring and gate-keeping function against pathogenic & epidemic diseases.

Since the Marine Hospital Service's scope of duties grew to include most national public health functions, it was renamed (1902) the "Public Health and Marine-Hospital Service." In 1912, the name of the service was changed to the PUBLIC HEALTH SERVICE (which still uses the heraldry of the Marine Hospital Service fouled anchor and caduceus seal). The Service was led by a "Supervising Surgeon General," a forerunner of the modern-day office of SURGEON GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES.

The Marine Hospital Service also became the point of origin for the present-day Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and a host of other federal-level health programs.”

“The USS Jamestown was a sloop in the United States Navy during the Mexican-American War and the American Civil War. The Gosport Navy Yard, Virginia, launched Jamestown in 1844. In 1882, she was transferred to the Treasury Department for Marine Hospital Service for quarantine purposes in Hampton Roads. She was destroyed by fire at the Norfolk Navy Yard on 3 January 1913, after being returned to the Navy Department.”


Price= $75.00



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