Memories of Camp Cody Weblog

December 22, 2010

Medical Mobilization – Journal A.M.A. – Oct. 27, 1917 – Part 3 of 3

Filed under: Camp Cody Deming — Michael Kromeke @ 8:27 pm

Thirty-Fourth Division, Camp Cody, Deming, N. M.


Recently an order was issued from Washington requiring courses of instruction for medical officers with divisions. Such a course of instruction was instituted in Camp Cody, October 1, ten days in advance of the receipt of the order. It is designed to cover the work that will be required of medical officers in campaign, and includes sanitation in camp and on the march, the care of the person, foods, cooking and mess management, as well as the study of Army Regulations, Manual of the Medical Department, organization of the Army, relation of the Medical Department to the rest of the Army, and other administrative work which is essential in an effective organization, and in which the Medical Department necessarily plays a very large part. The course is objective and practical, and includes participation in regimental, brigade and divisional maneuvers.

In the more specifically medical part of the course, regular conferences are held in the wards of. the base hospital, at which regimental surgeons and others discuss with the hospital staff cases which they have sent in, paying especial attention to those in which the diagnosis at the base hospital differs from that on admission.

Lectures by specialists present with the division, or sent for the purpose, deal with various departments of military medicine and surgery, diseases incident to life in the trenches, gas poisoning, and the special conditions that the Medical Department is likely to have to meet during the present war.

The physicians who have exchanged civilian life for the orderly round of military duties in the camp are finding the work heavy but full of professional and human interest. All are finding the well ordered life in the mountain air good for health and spirits, and are happy in the consciousness of giving increasingly efficient service to the United States. – Copyright

December 16, 2010

Medical Mobilization – Journal A.M.A. – Oct. 27, 1917 – Part 2 of 3

Filed under: Camp Cody Deming — Michael Kromeke @ 5:46 pm

Thirty-Fourth Division, Camp Cody, Deming, N. M.


Venereal diseases have resulted in admissions to the hos¬ pital at the rate of 2 per thousand. The municipal authorities in the city of Deming have cooperated loyally and zealously in combating these and other diseases at the source. The segregated district in the city has been abolished, and the reestablishment of houses of prostitution prevented. Two cases of typhoid have developed among civilians. These infections have been traced in each case to a source outside the camp. No cases have developed among the soldi^s, and vaccination against typhoid, paratyphoid and smallpox is being accomplished.


The water supply comes from wells from 70 to 100 feet deep. Previous examinations have shown the water to be pure, free from alkali and organic pollution, and careful examination of water from each of the four individual wells is now being conducted. An interesting character of the subsoil contri¬ butes to the safety of the water supply. The rainfall is very slight, and the water in the ground has come in from the mountains surrounding the plain. These water-bearing strata lie beneath a layer that is almost impervious. Water stands in unlined cisterns for months without apparent diminution, but there is evidence of an exceedingly slow capillary move¬ment of subsoil water upward to replace that lost from the surface by evaporation. This water carries with it lime salts in solution which are slowly deposited a foot or more below the ground surface as the water evaporates, and a consider¬ able layer of “caliche” has thus been formed. This is used for surfacing streets and earthen floors. Although the soil is thus impervious, the contamination of the surface by excreta and garbage is prevented for other reasons that are obvious. Cesspools in Deming have been replaced by connection with the sewerage system, and where open closets are still used, the dry earth system and fly tight boxes are required. Garbage is sold under contract, and other refuse is burned in the company incinerators over which all waste or dirty water from kitchens or other sources is evaporated. – Copyright

December 13, 2010

Medical Mobilization – Journal A.M.A. – Oct. 27, 1917 – Part 1 of 3

Filed under: Camp Cody Deming — Michael Kromeke @ 3:39 am

Thirty-Fourth Division, Camp Cody, Deming, N. M.

Camp Cody, N. M., the Thirty-Fourth Division, is being formed of troops from the National Guard of Minnesota, the Dakotas, Nebraska and Iowa. Lieut. Col. J. M. Coffin is division surgeon, and about a hundred medical officers of the division are already working under his direction.

The camp is situated just west of the city of Deming, occupying an area of 4 by 2V-z miles, being part of an extensive “bolsón” plain near the continental divide, at an elevation of about 4,400 feet, with isolated mountains around it in all directions at distances of from 6 to 50 miles. The Army sanatorium for tuberculosis at Fort Bayard is distant only 54 miles.

The health of the troops is excellent. The climatic and other local conditions are of the best, and the division surgeon has succeeded in preventing the introduction of disease from outside. Surgeons examine all incoming troops promptly on arrival, and isolate all patients with contagious disease. A board of five medical officers is examining all troops for incipient pulmonary tuberculosis. Capt. E. S. Bullock of Silver City, N. M., is president of this board. Similar boards make careful examinations along other lines. Capt. H. R. Carter, Jr., formerly of Johns Hopkins Medical School, is director of the board for cardiovascular examinations ; Capt. L. C. Covington of Charleston, W. Va., of the board for ocular diseases and defects, and Lieut. H. Phillips of the Pennsylvania State Hospital for the Insane for mental disease and defects. Less than 0.5 per cent, of the troops have shown incipient pulmonary tuberculosis, 1 per cent, some form of conjunctivitis, and less than 1 per thousand serious mental incapacity. – Copyright

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