Girls' schools at Sidon and Tripoli - The Gerard Institute - The school at Suk el Gharb - Mount Lebanon Hospital for the Insane.
SIX other boarding-schools connected with the Presbyterian Mission have been opened since 1860.
The girls' schools in Tripoli (1872), and Sidon (1862), and the boys' boarding-schools in Sidon (1881), and Suk el Gharb ( 1877), have had a large share in the training of the youth of Syria.
In 1899 the boys' boarding-school at Shweir, Mount Lebanon, founded in 1869 by the Lebanon Schools Committee of the Free Church of Scotland, in Suk el Gharb, and thence removed to Shweir, was transferred to the Presbyterian Board of Missions. The principal, Rev. William Carslaw, M. D., however, continues as its head, being supported by the United Free Church. The school has a high character for religious influence and scholarship.
Another boys' boarding-school has just been opened in Tripoli, under the care of Rev. Dr. Nelson. Its prospects are good, and the people are willing to pay for education. It has seventy-five paying boarders. The native Protestants in Hums have opened at their own expense a boys' boarding-school with ninety boarders and ninety day pupils.
TRIPOLI GIRLS' SCHOOL
The Tripoli station had been occupied about twenty years, when the need of a girls' boarding-school became urgent. A day school for girls had been opened in 1856 and continued, but it could not train teachers or benefit Protestant girls in the interior. Beirut Seminary was too far and its training not adapted to the peasant girls of Akkar and Safita, Hums, and Mahardeh.
In September, 1873, Mrs. Shrimpton, an English lady, and Miss Kipp, of Auburn, N. Y., took charge of the school. In October, 1875, Miss Mary S. Hanford (now Mrs. Professor Moore of Andover) spent a year in teaching. In January, 1876, Miss Harriet La Grange began her work as head of the school, and was joined in May by Miss Emilia Thomson, of Beirut. In October, 1879, Miss Susan H. Calhoun came to aid Miss LaGrange. In December, 1879, Miss Calhoun was transferred to Shwifat, and Miss Cundall took her place, and remained until her return to America in March, 1883. In November, 1883, Miss C. M. Holmes came, and remained, with one year's absence, until July, 1894. Misses R. Brown (1886), Bird (1887), M. T. M. Ford (1888), F. M. Jessup (1895), A. H. Jessup (1896), E. M. Law, and Mrs. Shaw taught for varying periods until Miss Bernice Hunting came in October, 1896. During her furlough in 1904-1905 Miss Gillbee of England took her place.
Not less than fifteen different foreign teachers have been connected with it, but the success of the school has been owing to the faithful and continuous labours of Miss Harriet La Grange for thirty-three years. Two classes of girls have been enrolled in this school, the more aristocratic Greek girls of Tripoli, and the daughters of the fellahin of the interior. To combine these two in one school has been no easy task, but the patience, wisdom and fidelity of the teachers have surmounted all difficulties. The daughters of the city have been highly educated and fitted for the wealthier homes, and the country girls have been fitted to be teachers, and to be wives of Syrian artisans and farmers,
I was present at the graduating exercises of this school in 1885, and delivered the annual address. At the close, Nicola Beg Nofel, the most prominent citizen of the Orthodox Greek community of Tripoli, made a brief address, speaking in the most eloquent and affectionate terms of the high esteem in which Miss La Grange was held by the people of Tripoli, and of the fruit of her labours in the moral, religious, and intellectual elevation of the young women of Tripoli. it was one of the many similar testimonies given from time to time in Tripoli, Beirut and Sidon, to the high appreciation by the Syrian people of female education as conducted by the American missionaries.
The English language has been taught, and certain of the pupils have learned French, but all have been trained in the Arabic language, and in the Scriptures. In the winter of 1900-1901 a profound religious awakening moved the whole school.
The number of boarding pupils in the Tripoli school from the beginning is about 300, thirty-six of whom have become teachers in Protestant, native Greek and Russian schools. Twelve of the present pupils are daughters of former pupils.
THE SIDON GIRLS' BOARDING-SCHOOL
A glance at the map of Syria, showing three American boarding-schools for girls on the Syrian coast, within a distance of seventy miles, has led some to criticize a policy of such educational concentration. But the explanation is easy. Each of these schools has been a providential growth. The Syrian people can best be reached through village schools. Schools are an entering wedge, and open the way for the Church and the organized Protestant community. But these schools must have teachers, and the girls' schools must have teachers from the villages where they are opened. To meet this need and to train educated wives for Protestant men, there must be boarding schools. Dr. De Forest opened the first girls' boarding school in Syria. On his departure, the Board sent Miss Temple and Miss Johnson, who transferred the school from Beirut to Suk el Gharb in 1858. The massacres of 1860 broke up the school, and the same circumstances which made it impolitic to reopen the school in Lebanon demanded its opening in Sidon. Miss Johnson having returned to America, Miss Mason came in her place, and as the Civil War in America had crippled the funds of the Board, Miss Mason was directed to open, in October, 1862, a day-school in Sidon, and girls from the outlying villages, in attendance, were to board in the families of native Protestants in the city at the expense of the mission.
Miss Mason resigned in 1865, having had the aid of Mrs. W. W. Eddy, and Mrs. Ford in carrying on the school. The mission then decided to place the school wholly in charge of a Syrian principal and teachers, under the supervision of Mrs. Eddy. This was a pet object with those who originated the Beirut Female Seminary, and the Syrian Protestant College. It succeeded in Beirut Seminary for six years and then failed' as the rarely gifted Syrian preceptress, Miss Rufka Gregory, had no successor, and Miss E. D. Everett was called to take her place. It was in reality never tried in the Syrian Protestant College nor could it have been tried.
As the American Board were loath to send another American in Miss Mason's place, this plan of a Syrian principal was triedBut in the fall and winter of 1867, Mrs. H. Watson, an English lady of long experience as a teacher, and her Syrian adopted daughter, Miss Handumeh Shekkur Watson, took charge of the school. Afterwards it was conducted by Misses Jacombs and Stainton, English ladies, from 1871 to July, 1876. These ladies were supported by the then prosperous "Society for the Promotion of Female Education in the East." The courtesy shown by this society in supplying Sidon Seminary so long was fully appreciated.
Meantime the hope of placing it under a Syrian principal and staff was abandoned. In October, 1876, Miss Harriette M. Eddy, having completed her education in the United States and returned as an appointed missionary, took charge of the school. She continued in it for twelve years, until her marriage to Rev. F. E. Hoskins, August, 1888. During this period she had been assisted by Misses M. M. Lyons (1877-1880), E. Bird, B. M. Nelson (1881-1885), S. Ford (1883), Rebecca Brown (1885-1892), Charlotte Brown (1885). On the return of Miss R. Brown to America in 1892, Miss Ellen M. Law came to the school, and was followed in November, 1893, by her sister, Miss M. Louise Law. In 1892-1893, Miss M. T. M. Ford taught in Sidon Seminary, Mrs. Gerald F. Dale, Jr., in 1893-1894, Miss F. M. Jessup for the year (1901) and in December, 1902, Miss Horne came to Sidon and remained there nearly two years. The school is now (1908) under the charge of Misses Charlotte Brown and Louise Law.
It now has about fifty boarding pupils, and quite a number of day scholars. In its curriculum it has vibrated between a purely vernacular basis and a broader one teaching the English language. It has aimed at admitting only Protestant girls, whether paying pupils or not, and its graduates form now the best element in the Christian womanhood of the whole mission field east and south of Sidon, in scores of villages and hundreds of homes. It does not aim at as high a standard of the Beirut Seminary, and its graduates often enter the Beirut "Teacher's Class," to fit them as first-class teachers, but it gives a solid and substantial education.
It must be remembered that Syria has no public schools. The only government schools virtually receive only Moslem children, and exclude the Christian sects. The system is narrow, bigoted and short-sighted, intended to bolster up Islam, and ignore Christianity. "While nominally for all sects, yet probably not more than one per cent of their pupils are from the Oriental Christian sects." (the London Times, January, 1905). [The programme of the new liberal government includes common schools for all and universal education.]
Every Christian sect is, therefore, forced to educate its own children, and thus the children of the various sects in the empire grow up ignorant of each other, and the ancient racial and religious hatreds are perpetuated. Protestant schools open their doors to all. Yet the authorities, fearing the light, threaten all Moslem children attending Protestant schools. As a rule the Protestant schools are so much better than others, that they are crowded with pupils of all sects. An educated Protestant young woman in a village, teaching the children, teaches the mothers as well, and becomes the counsellor and guide of all, respected and beloved. Each village school becomes a fountain of light and blessing.
Sidon school has thus far educated 566 boarders and seventy-eight day pupils in the upper department. Of these, 190 are known to have united with the Church; and of these, about 140 of the graduates have become teachers in Syria, Palestine, and Egypt.
GERARD INSTITUTE, SIDON
This institution, now so well established, is the outgrowth of a missionary necessity. After a trial of fifteen years, it was found that, as a rule, the college graduates were not available as teachers of village schools, and as ordinary religious helpers. They were not content with the moderate salaries, nor a return to simple village life and habits. It was, therefore, voted in August, 1881, that, "in view of the want of a grade of teachers in the mission, intermediate between college graduates and the graduates of common schools, the different stations (Sidon, Abeih, Tripoli , and Zahleh) be authorized to educate a class of pupil-teachers in the high schools at the central stations of each field, and to furnish in whole or in part the cost of the board of the pupils while studying."
In accordance with this vote, Sidon station authorized Mr. W. K. Eddy to open a boarding department in the day-school for boys in Sidon, October, 188 1, the boys being chiefly from the neighbouring villages. A part of them brought their own food, and slept at the school.
About 1882, a boys' boarding-school was also opened in Suk el Gharb, Mount Lebanon, by Rev. T. S. Pond, of the Abeih station, and one at a later date, 1885, in Zahleh, by Rev. G. F. Dale, Jr., but the boarding department of the school was discontinued at his death, October, 1886, after one year's trial, for lack of a missionary superintendent.
In August, 1886, Dr. G. A. Ford, by appointment, read a paper before the mission on boys' boarding-schools. He said in part:
"In view of the suspension of Abeih Seminary, the opening of the theological seminary in Beirut, the change in the college from Arabic to English, after the Abeih Seminary was closed, and the difficulty of depending on the college for plain teachers and preachers, and there being no institution preparatory to the theological seminary where a first-class Arabic or Bible education can be obtained; and in view of the gradual disappearance of the men trained in Abeih under Mr. Calhoun, a falling off in the grade of native helpers; the drain Egypt makes on the class of highly-educated men; and the drifting of the boys' boarding schools in Sidon and Suk beyond the scope of the vote under which they were founded ; it is evident that there is need of an intermediate education for Christian workers. A similar need is felt in England and America." Dr. Ford quoted the General Assembly, the Methodists, Drs. Crosby, Cuyler, Craighead, Dykes, Spurgeon's Lay College, H. G. Guinness' Missionary Institute, and Moody's Bible Training-Schools in Chicago and Northfield.
Mr. Calhoun had said, in 1859: "To the Scriptures we give increased attention. The Bible is doing more to unfold and expand the intellectual powers and to create careful and honest thinkers, than all the science we teach, and at the same time is the chief instrument in ridding mind and heart of those hateful doctrines and traditions, which are the heritage of these sons of the Church (i. e., Greeks, Maronites and Catholics)."
The plea for an intermediate training-school was urged on the ground of enlargement, simplicity, rapidity and economy. Dr. Ford urged that two schools be opened, one a vernacular Bible training-school, excluding English; the other a thorough Arabic academic course, with English enough to enable pupils to enter the college.
In 1890 Mr. March read a paper on boys' boarding- schools, urging that the mission should set apart for this work the best man with the strongest mind and warmest heart that the mission can afford. He urged that the college course is too long and expensive, and its graduates cannot supply teachers for the common schools. In fact, up to 1890, seventy-two of the boys trained in the mission boarding-schools had become teachers in the common schools.
The mission had often discussed the need of an industrial department in our training-schools. The educated boys were leaving school with no means of support. All could not be teachers. Education of the head without the hand had unfitted them to work as their fathers had before them. What Syria needed was a body of educated men who could work as carpenters, tailors, shoemakers and farmers, and support themselves. Thus far much had been said, but nothing done. To Dr. G. A. Ford is due the credit of having made the ideal actual. In June, 1893, the mission voted approving the establishment of an industrial orphanage for boys, under evangelical management and American superintendence, and asking for an endowment of $25,000, apart from the cost of property, building and equipment. In 1894, Dr. Ford presented an elaborate paper on industrial training, and in January, 1895, it was agreed that industrial training be begun as an integral part of Sidon Academy, now Gerard Institute.
In 1894, $15,000 were raised: $6,500 by Mrs. Wood, $4,000 by Dr. Ford, and $4,550 by Dr. H. H. Jessup, and in 1895 the Miyeh-wa-miyeh farm was purchased, and the progress of the industrial school approved by the mission. Carpentry, tailoring, shoemaking and masonry were begun and successfully carried on. Eight thousand dollars was expended for land, $4,000 for additional buildings, $1,000 for implements, $1,000 for raw materials for trades, and $1,000 for running expenses the first year. Mrs. George Wood of New York, who bad already munificently given towards the erection of Wood Hall for the Sidon Boys' School, and the Judaideh school and dwelling-house, now gave new proofs of her broad-minded generosity. Through her aid more land was purchased. Artesian boring apparatus was imported, with the aid of Mrs. Livingston Taylor of Cleveland, who gave $4,000 for that department of the work and engineers came from America and made successive borings for water. Much the most successful one is in the campus of Wood Hall. Pipes were driven down 900 feet, and a stream of pure water rose nearly to the surface from over 70P feet depth, and an hydraulic ram forces the water up to, An elevated tank, from which it flows to the Gerard Institute and the girls' boarding-school at the other end of the city, supplying all the needs of the American colony, with a surplus that could be sold to the city.
In May, 1900, the name of Sidon Academy was changed to Gerard Institute, in honour of the maiden name of Mrs. George Wood. This name covers the literary, industrial and orphan departments.
An orphan house and school building has been erected on the Miyeh-wa-miyeh farm, known as Beulah Home, and extensive irrigating works have been constructed in the valley, on the northeast, vastly increasing the value and productiveness of the farm, This farm with its wheat fields, mulberry, olive and orange orchards, is expected to yield an annual net income of at least $1,000, for the support of the orphanage. Ramapo Hall is now being erected on the farm on an elevation overlooking Sidon and the sea.
During the visit of Rev. Dr. Brown to Syria in 1902, Mrs. Wood added to her already generous benefactions the following splendidly munificent proposal:
"Having long cherished a desire to add to the permanence and scope of the Mission Training-School for Boys at Sidon, it gives me double pleasure to connect the offers I am prepared to make with the auspicious occasion of your first secretarial visit to Syria. Allow me, then, through you, to make to the mission and the Board, for the benefit of Gerard Institute, the following offer:
1. Fifteen hundred dollars in cash already loaned by me to the stock account of the industrial department of the Gerard Institute.
2. Such a sum in cash (not to exceed $10,000) as may be required to erect needful buildings at 'Dar Es Salaam.'
3. The loan of such a further sum in cash without interest, as might be required to carry out any plans I the Board and mission may decide upon, said loan being fully covered in their judgment by assets of the mission for the purpose becoming available in a few years' time.
4. The title deeds for the new building for the orphans! With reference to the consolidation of the boarding-school known as 'Beulah Home' - with the large tract of land on which it stands and the forest tract near by.
5. An annual sum (not exceeding $1,000) to cover any needed outlay towards securing more efficient instruction in the manual department.
6. An annual sum (not exceeding $1,000) to cover the cost of maintaining the orphan department with a maximum of twenty boys, including the wages of the farm overseer.
"When the plans of the mission relative to these offers shall have been matured, I shall be ready to take all requisite measures to satisfy the Board and the mission regarding the security of my offers and their permanent validity."
This offer was unanimously and cordially accepted by the Syria Mission and by the Board, so that the Gerard Institute now has a larger financial support than any other boarding school in the world connected with our work. I cannot speak too highly of the value of Mrs. Wood's intelligent, sympathetic and self-sacrificing cooperation. She has given unstintedly of her time, her strength and her money, and without her assistance the institute never could have become what it is today.
The institute is situated in the city of Sidon, but while the situation is convenient, it was too small before Mrs. Wood's offer, and it is altogether impossible from the view-point of the enlarged plans which her generosity has permitted. There can be no expansion in Sidon proper, for the adjoining property on both sides is owned by parties who will not sell, while the tract across the street is a Moslem cemetery. It is, moreover, desirable that such a school should have a larger area than would be possible in a crowded Oriental city, especially as the farm is to form a prominent feature of the work of the school. Accordingly a large tract of land has been secured about two miles from the city. It lies on the summit and slope of a high hill and commands one of the noblest views in all the East. It is a superb site for an institution ; near enough to the city to be easy of access, and yet far enough away to give ample room for development. The Beulah Home Orphanage is already established at this site, and the whole institute will be transferred to it as soon as the necessary buildings can be erected, though it is probable that some work, particularly the day-schools, will continue to be done at the old site. The industrial departments are (1) farming and gardening; (2) masonry and plastering; (3) carpentry and joining; (4) tailoring; (5) blacksmithing, etc.; (6) shoemaking.
A serious difficulty has been experienced in finding suitable Christian instructors. None of the missionaries had the requisite technical knowledge, and the resources of the institute did not permit the employment of suitable superintendents from the United States. As a temporary makeshift, therefore, arrangements were made with local tailors, carpenters, masons, etc., they to give free instruction to such boys as wished to learn their respective trades and to take the profits of the shops for their compensation. This plan has worked well enough financially. It has given foremen without cost to the institute, while on the other hand, free student labour has been a sufficient incentive to the local workmen. The difficulty is that these foremen have had, usually, no thorough training themselves, their knowledge being limited to the native methods and that they are apt to lack the patience and skill required to impart what they do know to a lot of boys who may be but languidly interested. Even more serious is the fact that such foremen, while men of excellent character, are for the most part not evangelical Protestants, so that they are unable to exert that spiritual influence which we regard as so essential. In time, it is fair to expect that graduates of the institute will become available for foremen in the various departments, and special effort should be made to develop the right men for this purpose. But for so large a school, a foreign mechanical superintendent is urgently needed, and with the added resources now made available by Mrs. Wood's offer, it is hoped that Dr. Ford can carry out his long cherished desire to obtain a foreign assistant, who will unite mechanical skill and missionary character.
The boarding section of the primary department has now been removed to the Beulah Home on the farm. The orphanage edifice has been enlarged, and now has some fifty pupils. Mr. Stuart D. Jessup has entered upon his duties as teacher in Gerard Institute in the city. Buildings are now in process of erection (1909) on the farm hill. The main building is to be known as Ramapo Hall, the funds having been given to Dr. Ford by the Ramapo Church.
In December, 1903, Mr. Stuart D. Jessup in his annual report of the institute gave some valuable facts about the training of native helpers. In this paper it was stated that of 1,019 students who have attended Gerard Institute up to 1902' 164 have taught in mission schools for from one to fourteen years, or nearly eight per year.
Of 144 native helpers now employed by the mission, forty-seven received their training in whole or in part at Gerard, twenty-eight at Suk el Gharb, twenty-three at the college, sixteen at the old Abeih Academy, six at Shweir, fourteen at other mission schools and ten had no academic training.
Of the thirty-five native preachers in the Syria Mission, ordained and licentiates, six received no academic training. Of the remaining twenty-nine, ten were trained in the old Abeih. Academy, ten at Gerard, four at Suk, three at the college, and two at other mission schools.
It is clear, then, that such schools as Gerard and Suk are a necessity as long as native Syrian teachers and helpers are needed. The teaching of English in these schools is justified, 1st, by the fact that many of the boys intend to enter the college; 2d, that those who become teachers of common schools may be able to teach the rudiments of English.
The English occupation of Egypt and the emigration of tens of thousands of Syrians to America have given the English language an impetus in these old lands of Western Asia, which obliges all schools to teach English or lose their pupils. Emigrants are constantly writing to their friends left behind in Syria, "Be sure and send your children to the American and English schools!"
SUK EL GHARB Boys' BOARDING-SCHOOL
In the fall of 1883, this school was opened by Rev. T. S. Pond, who conducted it until June, 1889. It began with thirty-five boarders, and when Mr. Pond left Syria it had ninety-eight. During the six years it had about 250 pupils.
Rev. O. J. Hardin took charge of it November 9, 1889, and the whole number under instruction during these sixteen years (1905) has been 852, from all the Syrian sects, Protestant, Greek, Maronite, Catholic, Druse, Moslem and Jewish. Of the graduates, eighty-nine have been teachers; twelve have been preachers; five have been in the theological classes, and 133' have entered the Syrian Protestant College. Mr. Hardin aims not only to prepare boys for college, but to fit them for usefulness whether they become teachers or not. Arabic, English and French are well taught. Miss Effie Hardin has given her services gratuitously, and has been most successful in teaching English so that her pupils are well prepared for freshman year in the college.
It was proposed at one time to suspend the Suk school, or merge it in the boarding-school at Shweir, or in the Tripoli school. But it has a distinct vocation from its situation in Druse Lebanon. The climate is healthful, summer and winter.
The buildings of cut stone are the property of the Board of Missions, and the original structure was built under the auspices of the Scotch "Lebanon Schools," and dedicated in June, 1870, by the celebrated Dr. Alexander Duff, and his co-commissioner, Principal J. Lumsden, whose names were carved in the massive limestone blocks near the entrance on the west wall of the building. Previous to that visit, the schools had been under the control of a Syrian superintendent, but in 1872, Rev. John Rae was sent out from Scotland to take charge as superintendent. As the Syrian, who had assured Dr. Duff that the property was bought with Scotch funds, refused to surrender the keys to Mr. Rae, legal proceedings were entered upon and Mr. Rae removed to Shweir in 1 874, where he was succeeded by Dr. Carslaw in 1880. The Scotch Mission, having secured through the Lebanon court the possession of the Suk el Gharb buildings after litigation for fifteen years, sold them to the American Mission in March, 1889.
Dr. Carslaw had been a lay medical missionary in Madras, and was ordained by the mission presbytery in Beirut, December, 188 3, and in 1900 the Lebanon Schools Committee transferred all right and title to the Shweir property, consisting of a manse, a church and two school buildings, to the American Presbyterian Board of Foreign Missions. The United Free Chruch retain Dr. Carslaw as their missionary during his litetime.
THE, ASFURIYEH HOSPITAL FOR THE INSANE
On the 17th of April, 1896 , it was my privilege to invite a number of foreign and Syrian residents of Beirut to meet in my study, to hear from Theophilus Waldmeier a statement of his plan to found a hospital for the insane in Syria. As a result ten of those present consented to act as an executive committee. Rev. John Wortabet, M. D., was elected president, H. H. Jessup secretary, Charles Smith, Esq., treasurer, and the other members were Theophilus Waldmeier, founder and business superintendent, Messrs. Shoucair and Khirullah, Syrians, Drs. Brigstocke and Graham, English, Dr. W. T. Van Dyck, American, and Pastor Otto Fritze, German.
Mr. Waldmeier was then authorized to visit Europe, Great Britain, and the United States, to interest the public and to raise funds to buy land and erect buildings. A native of Germany, yet resident in the East for thirty-eight years and of large experience in buying the site and erecting the four large edifices of the Friends' Mission in Brummana, Mount Lebanon, speaking German, English, French, and Arabic, and fully consecrated to devote the remaining years of his life to the relief of the mentally affected as a service to Christ and humanity, he was admirably qualified for the laborious task, and succeeded well. He formed auxiliary committees in Switzerland, Holland, Germany, England, Scotland, Ireland, Canada, and the United States, and raised about ten thousand dollars. A central committee was formed in London composed of such men as Sir Richard Tangye, Dr. F. A. Elkins, Dr. R. Fortescue Fox, Dr. R. Percy Smith, Dr. David Yellowlees, Dr. A. T. Schofield, Dr. Bedford Pierce, Rev. J. Guinness Rogers, D. D., and Dr. R. Hingston Fox, and others, and a board of trustees was formed consisting of Wm. A. Albright and Joel Cadbury of Birmingham and Rev. C. A. Webster, M. D., and Rev. H. H. Jessup, D. D., of Beirut.
Mr. Waldmeier returned to Syria in 1897, and after long searching and many journeys by sub-committees, we finally selected as the best site the place known as El Asfuriyeh, a beautiful elevation on one of the lower spurs of Lebanon, forty-five minutes from Beirut, yet under the Christian government of Lebanon, 400 feet above sea-level, with an abundant supply of pure spring water, a large tract of land, three stone buildings, fine quarries of indurated cretaceous limestone for building, a fertile soil, and a most salubrious, cheerful, and attractive site.
We purchased it from Hishmet Beg, a courteous and high minded Turkish gentleman, long known as the upright treasurer of the Lebanon government, for about $9,000, and experience has proved that it was a most economical purchase. There are now thirty-four acres of land.
Nine years have passed. Twelve stone buildings have been erected - the administration building (enlarged), the men's ward, and isolating ward, the Holland kitchen, Dr. Thwaites' house, the house of Mr. Baumkamp, head nurse, the chapel, the clinic, the porter's lodge, the wash-house, and the tenant farmer's house. In addition to a perennial flowing spring of pure water, it has several rain-water cisterns.
More than 600 patients have received treatment, of whom more that thirty-three per cent. have been discharged cured. The average number treated annually is 155. This being the only organized hospital for the insane in Syria, patients come from Syria' Palestine, Egypt, Asia Minor, Cyprus, Malta, Persia, India, and foreigners from Russia, Italy, Germany and Austria. They represent ten of the religious sects of the land. Mohammedans, Maronites, Jews, Orthodox Greeks, Druses, Papal Greeks, Metawilehs, Armenians, Roman Catholics, and Protestants.
The work is international and undenominational, and appeals to the liberal in all lands and of all forms of religious faith. Unlike insane hospitals in civilized lands, it has no state aid and depends upon voluntary contributions.
When we were planning for its organization in 1896-1897, Dr. Cornelius Van Dyck said that "we need not expect the people to pay for the cure of their insane," but the facts prove that they will and do pay.
In 1900 received from patients 156 pounds
" 1901 " " " 589
" 1902 " " " 651
1903 " " " 729
1904 " " " 859
1905 " " " 1,113
1906 " " " 1,003
1907 " " " 11003.13
1908 " " " 1,125
This is a remarkable result. Yet there are on an average thirty poor patients, unable to pay, who add largely to the deficit in the annual income.
As the expenses of the hospital amount to about $10,000 a year, about $5,000 must come from outside donations, and an endowment is needed which would net the amount per annum.
Under the business superintendence of Mr. Waldmeier, and the medical care of Dr. Thwaites, just succeeded by Dr. Watson Smith, with the aid of Mr. Baumkamp and Miss Ashley, with a corps of native male and female nurses, the institution is well equipped. Before this hospital was opened, the treatment of the insane was cruel beyond belief. They were beaten, chained, confined in damp, dark dungeons, or given over to priests who professed to exorcise the demons by cruel torture in the dark cavern of the Convent of Kozheiya in Northern Lebanon. Some are cauterized in the head with red-hot irons. One priest in Brummana had an insane woman bound to a stone pillar head downward, read his formula for exorcism, fumigating her with incense until she began to curse him, when he beat her on the face with his large silver cross until the blood streamed down upon it.
When she was released and had recovered her strength she ran six miles down the mountain to the sea and drowned herself.
In contrast the people say, "This hospital is the crown of goodness and mercy." A native writer declares the buildings, in their neatness and cleanliness, to be more like palaces than insane hospital wards. Dr. A. T. Schofield of London who visited Asfuriyeh declared it to be "a model institution."
Dr. Mauser, director of the large Heldburghausen Asylum in Germany, in 1906 wrote, "I am astonished to find such an excellent asylum in this country: the houses are well built with free admission of light and fresh air, clean, comfortable, and substantial, and what pleases me above all is the absence of the undesirable walls, which even till now surround some of our asylums in Europe. The 'bed treatment' of the maniacal and excited patients is much better than the strong 'jackets.'"
"The hospital now stands," as Mr. Waldmeier says in the report, March, 1907, "as a beautiful object-lesson before us, in which a loving, Christian, humane treatment of the patients, combined with modern alienistic science, can be observed. Iron chains have to give way to freedom, atrocities and cruelties to Christian love and kindness, exorcism to sound reason, filthy and dangerous to clean and airy rooms, and ignorance to the light of the Gospel and civilization."
This work, though not under a missionary board, is a child of missions, and under the management of Christian men. I regard the time and strength I have given to it as secretary for ten years, as work done for Christ and His suffering ones, and in this respect it is Christian missionary work.
BEIRUT EXECUTIVE COMMITEE
R. W. Brigstocke, M.D., Chairman.
Rev. H. H. Jessup, D. D., Secretary.
Franklin T. Moore, M. D., Auditor.
Theophilus Waldmeier, Founder and Business Superintendent
Watson Smith, M. R. C. S., Medical Superintendent.
C. Sigrist, Consul and Banker. Treasurer.
Walter Booth Adams, M.A., M. D.
Harris Graham, B. A., M. D.
Rev. C. A. Webster, B. A., M.D
Rev. G. M. Mackie, D. D
J. J. Effendi Shoucair.
A. Effendi Kheirallah.
London Treasurer, Lady Tangye, 35 Queen Victoria Street, London, E. C.
Philadelphia, Pa., Treasurer, Asa S. Wing, 409 Chestnut Street.
New York Treasurer, Henry W. Jessup, Esq., 3 1 Nassau Street.