Page:A cyclopedia of American medical biography vol. 2.djvu/411

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SHAW 3 65

in: The New York Neurological Society, the Brooklyn Pathological Society, the American Neurological Society, the Medi- cal Society of the County of Kings, the Neurological Society of Brooklyn, the Medical Society of the State of New York and the Brooklyn Anatomical and Surgi- cal Society.

Dr. Shaw contributed many valuable l^apers on subjects relating to the nervous system, reading them before medical societies and publishing them in medical journals. The following may be men- tioned: "Muscular Atrophies in Loco- motor Ataxia;" "Hemiplegia in Chil- dren"; "Progressive Muscular Atrophy and its Pathology; " " Anomalous Cases of Locomotor Ataxia; " "General Paralysis of the Insane;" "The Practicability and Value of Non-Restraint Treatment of the Insane;" " Raynaud's Disease; " etc., etc. Hs contributed to ' International Clinics" and for a time was an associated editor of the "American Medical Digest, and he wrote "Essentials of Nervous Diseases and Insanity." Moved by the kindness of liis heart, and dominant by insight and reason, his efforts were directed and applied to the more humane treatment of the insane. The commissioners of Charity, moved by his persistent im- l)ortunities, gave the good doctor all their aid to improve the condition of the ])oor who had become insane from want, anxiety, hard work and improper food. There was a praiseworthy effort to transform the miodern " Bedlam," as it were, back into the Home of Bread, the " Bethlehem," in which the better em- blem of sanity might come with hope and peace. Chains, shackles, handcutTs and strait-jackets were taken off. Occu- pations and amusements were provided. Cottages were built for the less violently insane, and better sanitary conditions were established.

Shaw set out on his life work with ambition, industry, perseverance and high alms and made himself master in every department of his specialty.

Am. J. Insan., Bait. 1900-1. Ivii (B. Oiiuf). Brooklyn M. J., 1900, xiv.


SHECUT


Shecut, John Linneus Edward Whit- ridge (1770-1837).

This physician was born at Beaufort, South Carolina, December 4, 1770, descended from French Huguenots who sought refuge in Switzerland, near Geneva, whence his parents, Abraham and Marie Barbary Shecut, emigrated to South Carolina in 1768-9.

He began to study medicine under Dr. David Ramsay, and in 1791 graduated from the University of Pennsylvania.

He was a member of the Literary and Philosophical Society of South Carolina, which he organised in 1813, first as the Antiquarian Society. He was first presi- dent of the American Homespun Com- pany, the first cotton factory in the state, which he himself founded in 1820.

Dr. Shecut began to practise at Charleston immediately after gradua- tion and continued in active duty until death. He was one of the pioneers in the therapeutic application of electricity, and in 1806 exhibited a machine which he had designed for its administration. In his discussion of the yellow-fever epidemic of 1817 he advanced the theory that the cause of this malady was "a peculiar derangement of the atmos- pheric air" depriving it of "a due pro- portion of the electric fluid," acting in conjunction with "a peculiar state or diathesis in the animal economy partic- ularly pre-disposing to disease."

Dr. Shecut's interests were not limited by medicine, as shown by his activity in scientific, literary and industrial fields. His work on the flora of Carolina was written for the purpose of stimulating an interest in the study of botany and to simplify the Linnaean system. In later life he became actively interested in theology and organized the body of Trinitarian Universalists. This organi- zation seems to have been rather short- lived, for the founder became allied with the Methodists, of which denomination he was a member at the time of his death.

He married Sarah Cannon, January 26, 1792, and had four children, one of whom, William Harrel, studied medicine.