Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Hide of a Rhinoceros / The Doctor of Scenery Hill

The Hide of a Rhinoceros.
by Marjorie Patterson Kaiser
Book; English
New York, Vantage Press, [1975]
Related Subjects:
Patterson, Frank. Scenery Hill, Pennsylvania.

The Doctor of Scenery Hill
by Marjorie Patterson Kaiser
Book; English
[S.l.] : The Author, 1998.
2nd ed

Library location:
University of Rhode Island, Kingston
Kingston, RI 02881 United States

This book was orginally published under the title "The Hide of the Rhinoceros" and was then republished as "the Doctor of Scenery Hill". It is the true story of a young doctor and his wife who moved to Scenery Hill, Washington Co PA to take up his medical practice. It tells about the challenges he faced when he moved to a small rural farming community in the late 1890s. He was doctor to the townspeople as well as to those who lived in the nearby mining town. It tells of some of the backward ways in which people used to deal with medical problems, the resistance that he faced from some people because he was so young and they didn't trust him yet. It also describes many medical treatments and diagnosis that I personally didn't realize were actually known at that time. I was suprised at how advanced they really were. The book also deals with the problems his young bride faced as the wife of the town doctor, and the illness that finally took hold of the doctor after many years of tireless service to the town.

It is a very interesting look into what life was like in the area of Washington County just up the road from Beallsville on Rt 40. Even though it is not listed in WorldCat I do know that the Library and Archives at the Heinz History Center in Pittsburgh has a copy but you will have to read it at the library as their collection is non-circulating. This book may be hard to find - it took me months to locate a used copy online and then I paid a pretty penny for my copy. If you are interested in getting a snapshot of rural life in Southwestern PA and the coal towns in the area, it is worth trying to find.

1 comment:

Lisa said...

This is a really good book.