July 5, 1890


JAMA. 1890;XV(1):26. doi:10.1001/jama.1890.02410270042004

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A few weeks ago we had occasion to refer to non-medical coroners, and to the efforts made in Colorado to overcome some of the more serious defects in the administration of that office. In Illinois all the evils of the political coroner are most pronounced, and, doubtless, any effort that may be made to correct them will meet with determined opposition from the office-holding class. The laws governing coroners in Illinois are but a prototype of those in a majority of the States; only a few having so far made any effort to reform this relic of the middle ages. The Chicago Medico-Legal Society nearly two years ago appointed a committee that submitted an able report summarizing the abuses of the present system and urging the adoption of the Massachusetts law. This law in effect substitutes medical examiners, appointed by the Governor, having substantially the same powers as coroners, in

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