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JAMA 100 Years Ago
December 26, 2001

Tent Life and Simplicity in Treatment of Phthisis Pulmonalis.

Author Affiliations

JenniferReiling, Assistant Editor

JAMA. 2001;286(24):3055. doi:10.1001/jama.286.24.3055


Regular Meeting, held Nov. 12, 1901.

Dr. H. G. Wetherill in the Chair.

DR. WILLIAM K. ROBINSON said that formerly there was little difficulty in placing tuberculous patients on "ranches," but in the last few years a great dread has been inculcated in the minds of boarding-house and inn keepers so that it is now almost impossible for the invalid to secure a home in the country. This state of affairs suggested to him the necessity for establishing the Tent Colony. The plains were selected in preference to the mountains, because of the uniform temperature and other metereological conditions. The Colony is situated 30 miles from Denver; the soil is sandy; trees are in abundance. It is sufficiently far from the irrigation district to insure freedom from excessive humidity, and also from the city to escape smoke. The tents, arranged around the central building, are connected by canvassed vestibules. In the winter the beds are warmed with hot-water bottles, blankets are used instead of sheets; pajamas are made of heavy flannel with feet and hood. Patients use cheese cloths for expectorations, which are burned. Bedding is exposed to sun daily. The tents have board floors and sides 2 feet high. Bill of fare is composed of milk, eggs, vegetables and meat. They are instructed to spend most of their time exposed to the rays of the sun. They are required to bathe neck and chest with cold water every morning. Change of clothing is regulated according to weather. The ranch is supplied with current literature, games and horses.