Copyright
G. Drysdale (George Drysdale) Dempsey.

Tubular and other iron girder bridges, particularly describing the Britannia and Conway tubular bridges; with a sketch of iron bridges and illustrations of the application of malleable iron to the art of bridge-building. With wood engravings online

. (page 8 of 13)
Online LibraryG. Drysdale (George Drysdale) DempseyTubular and other iron girder bridges, particularly describing the Britannia and Conway tubular bridges; with a sketch of iron bridges and illustrations of the application of malleable iron to the art of bridge-building. With wood engravings → online text (page 8 of 13)
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stantly suffering from the fever they had con-
tracted in the Tarai in Oudh. As soon as the hot
season came on they were obliged to go to the
mountains, and we were again left alone. In a
few weeks Mr. and Mrs. Mansell came to us in
their place, and remained during the year. They
had but recently arrived in the country, and were
chiefly occupied in the study of the language. I
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i6o Twenty-one Years in India.

found them very congenial associates, and we had
a delightful time together, and the foundation was
laid for a lifelong friendship. Dr. Mansell is
still in the work, and has done splendid service in
the cause of Christ in India in many departments
of the service.

Here, too, I found a boys' school conducted
on the Mission premises. It was well organized
for that time, with an attendance of about thirty.
Some of the boys in attendance were from the
best families in the city. I saw at once that the
school was one of great promise; that it would
evidently prove a power for good if put on a
proper basis. I also felt sure it might be greatly
improved by a moderate increase of the expendi-
ture, and that the additional funds needed might
probably be secured from our English friends in
the station. I laid the matter before a few of our
residents, and they at once responded with all
that was needed to make the advance. I then
proceeded to remove the school to the city. It
was reorganized, the staff of teachers strength-
ened and improved, and, as a result, we soon had



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TwENTY-ONie Years in India. i6i

a large increase in our attendance and in general
interest in the school by the better class of people
in the city. In a short time Brother Mansell was
able to take charge of the school and relieve me
of the care and responsibility of it. This was a
great relief to me with all the other work upon
my hands at that time. In our first class were
about twenty bright, active yoimg men from good
families in the city, who were so far advanced in
the study of the English language that they could
understand it and speak it somewhat, so that
Brother Mansell could teach them to advantage,
and at the same time exercise a general superin-
tendence over the whole school. This has long
been one of our very best schools. In my time
there was a site in a very central position that I
longed to obtain, where we might erect a building
which would serve both for the school and re-
ligious services^ but it was not available at that
time. Years after. Brother Parker succeeded in
obtaining it, and such a building as I had dreamed
of, was built, and it has served a grand purpose
for many years. This Moradabad high school has

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i6z Twenty-one Years in India.

been exceedingly useful in affording more ad-
vanced education to our boys out in the country,
who have given promise of accomplishing some-
thing in life. We have had from the beginning
more native Christians scattered about over the
country in the Moradabad district than in any
other part of the country. Bishop Parker did
much for this school for many years, raising its
grade to that of a high school, educating up to
what is known as "the entrance course," which is
equivalent to entrance to college in this country.

It is now proposed to make it a memorial of
Bishop Parker, which is exceedingly appropriate,
and it is much to be hoped that a sufficient sum
may be secured to raise it above financial press-
ure for a long time to come.

About the middle of December, after my re-
moval to Moradabad, Dr. Butler came to us, on
his way to the Panjab to attend a great missionary
gathering in Lahore, which was designed to take
in all the missionaries in Upper India. It was to
begin on Christmas-day and continue through the
week and close on New- Year's Day. He was very



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TwENTY-oN^ Years in India. 163

anxious to have me accompany him ; but I felt it
would be impossible for me to meet the expenses
of so long a journey, but my wife and Dr. Butler
arranged it that I was to go. For a very small
sum he agreed to meet all the expense of my go-
ing. My wife insisted on paying this from a
small sum that she had succeeded in laying by.
She felt that it was an opportunity of a lifetime.
I felt so, too, but frequent removals and sickness
had reduced our finances to that extent that I felt
it would not be prudent for me to do so. But at
the importunity of both Dr. Butler and my wife
I had to yield, and I have never felt to regret it.
It was the great occasion of my life. Our journey
took us by Meerut, Delhi, Amballa, Lodiana,
Kapurthala, Julinder, and Amritsir, to Lahore.
Many of the missionaries were out in the district,
or on their way to the Conference to be held in
Lahore, but we called at all the places named and
saw a good deal of their work. We traveled by
Gharee Dak; it was a long journey of five or six
hundred miles, and we had several nights of
travel. Mr. Hauser joined us in Meerut, and as



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164 TwENTY-ON^ Y^ARS IN InDIA.

may be imagined, by those familiar with jour-
neying in India in those days, before we had rail-
ways, it was not a very easy thing for three of us
to manage to pass the night in a Dak Gharee to-
gether, but we managed it in some way, and suc-
ceeded in getting all the enjoyment out of it we
could. Dr. Butler was one of the very best of
traveling companions. He was splendid at rough-
ing it, versatile in expedients to make matters go
on smoothly, and as he assumed all the responsi-
bility of providing for me, I had a royal time. I
shall never forget that journey. We had been
together a good deal in arranging and opening our
work, with all the anxiety and care it involved;
now we were for the time freed from all that,
and we felt drawn together as perhaps never be-
fore. I shall never forget some of our conversa-
tions during those long moonlight nights on that
journey. I managed to get him to tell me much
more of his early life than I had known before.
I tiave often wished that some one who wields a
ready pen might write and give us the story of
his noble and useful life. I am glad to say that



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l^w^NTY-ON^ Years in India. 165

his gifted daughter, Miss Clementine Butler, who
was bom in India, has performed this service
very efficiently and lovingly. The book will, I
have no doubt, have a large sale and be widely
circulated.

As I look back over the past, I am more and
more impressed by the importance and magnitude
of the work he did in laying the foundation of
our Mission in India. Mistakes were made, no
doubt; it was hardly possible that it should be
otherwise; the marvel is that they were not more
numerous than they actually were. His plans
were large and generally well conceived, and
through all the intervening years we have been
reaping the benefit of them. I knew him as inti-
mately as any one in the Mission, and I think
there can be no question but that Dr. Butler was
a remarkable man. He had unbounded energy
and courage; but few men would have accom-
plished what he did in India under the circum-
stances that then existed. His memory will be
cherished in India by many for a long time to
come. He was a very able preacher. He preached



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i66 TwENTY-oN^ Years in India.

a very memorable sermon on the Sunday inter-
vening in course of the Conference. We were
the guests of the Presbyterian missionaries dur-
ing the session of the Conference. This Confer-
ence was distinguished from all others I have at-
tended in India, by the number of high officials
who attended it, and took a prominent part in
its proceedings. Among these were Sir Herbert
Edwards, Sir Donald McLeod, Mr. Forsyth,
Colonel Lake, Major McMahon, Mr. Cust, the
Rajah of Kapurthala, and many others, whose
names I can not at this distance of time recall. The
discussions were deeply interesting, having to do
with themes and subjects that were important and
very practical then. It was a social time of de-
lightful memory. We were on one occasion en-
tertained by Sir Donald McLeod at breakfast, on
another at Mr. Forsyth's, and on another occa-
sion by the Rajah of Kapurthala. He was a very
interesting man, and was in high favor with Gov-
ernment, as he had done much to aid the English
in the mutiny. He furnished a contingent to co-
operate with the army before Delhi. We were



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Twenty-one; Yejars in India. 167

all much interested in him, from the fact that at
this time he seemed about to embrace Christian-
ity. He had married a Christian wife; he had
invited a missionary to live at his capital. Rev.
Mr. Woodside lived at Kapurthala at that time,
and we enjoyed a most delightful visit to him
on our way up country. The Rajah had made a
generous subscription to our Mission, on Mr.
Woodside's recommendation; but some reverses
came to him so far as his religious life was con-
cerned. I think he never embraced Christianity
fully, and the missionary was, after a time, re-
moved. The most delightful hours of all were
those we spent in the home of Mr. Foreman,
where all the missionary body had a common
table, and, when not invited out, spent the eve-
ning in prayer and praise. The sessions of the
Conference were confined to the da)rtime. We
occupied tents in the Mission compound. It was
one of the most delightful occasions I have known,
at home or abroad. We reached home about the
loth of January, having had a truly royal time.
During the season we were at Moradabad, I



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i68 Twenty-one Years in India.

made the acquaintance of Pundit Nand Kishore
who was a Government officer in charge of one
of the Tahsils, or divisions, of the district under
the English magistrate and collector. He lived
at Sambhal, about twenty miles from Moradabad,
and desired to open a school at his own expense,
and desired me to visit him and render him some
assistance in the organization of his enterprise.
I did so, and found him a very interesting man
indeed. He was very intelligent, and much in-
terested in religious subjects. We became very
warm friends and years afterward we were
brought into very close contact by an enterprise
of common interest to us both, of which I shall
speak in a future chapter. Sambhal was a very
interesting place It was a very old city, and the
people all over that part of India had a tradition
that the tenth incarnation of Vishnu would ap-
pear in Sambhal. They claim that there have
already been nine incarnations of Vishnu, and
they have all been unholy ; but this last, which is
to come, will be holy, and will bring in a better
age for the world. This is no doubt a vague tra-
dition that has come to them in some way in re-



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I^w^nTy-on^ Y^ars in India. 169

gard to our Savior. We used to hear more about
this years ago than we do now. We used to tell
them that the holy incarnation has already come,
and that we had come to tell them about it. It
seemed to prepare them to receive the account of
our Lord's advent with favor. We occasionally
meet with ideas and conceptions, bursting out
from a mass of superstitions, that seem almost
startlingly familiar, and we wonder where they
came from. I have been told that in the south of
India are two parties of Brahmins, holding di-
verse theories in regard to the relation existing
between God and ourselves. One party holds that
God carries us as a cat carries her young, entirely
independent of any action of our own. From
this springs the doctrine of "kismat," or fate,
which is generally held by the Hindus. Indeed,
the people of India, both Hindus and Mohamme-
dans, are, as a rule, fatalists. They say a man's
"kismat," is written on his forehead, and can not
be changed. When calamity comes they are likely
to meet it stoically, and say, "kismat ki bat/' it
is fate.



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I/O Twenty-one Years in India.

The other party holds to what is called the
monkey theory. Our relation to God, they say,
is like that existing between a monkey and her
young. The mother carries the young; if they
cling to her, they must grasp the mother and hold
on. So, they say, God upholds and keeps us by our
clinging to Him, not by His clinging to us, as
the other party holds. In certain sections in the
South, it is said, men holding these views are
designated as belonging to the cat party, or to the
monkey party. Certainly these theories seem
very similar to those we are familiar with.

I had much to do in visiting and caring for
our native Christians at different points out in
the district. There were little groups of from two
to half a dozen families in villages, scattered
about over the country miles apart. It was not an
easy thing to reach them over the village roads,
which were often far from being good, and scat-
tered as they were ; but it was very important that
they should be instructed and cared for. I bap-
tized a good number of families this year, mostly
among the Sikhs, of whom we have spoken in a



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Tw:eNTY-ON^ Y^ARS IN InDIA. I7I

previous chapter. That year wolves were very
numerous and troublesome. Immediately after
the mutiny the people were disarmed, and wild
beasts became a source of much danger in some
localities. I was sleeping in an open shed one
night, on a cot the people had provided for me,
around me were a dozen or more sleeping on the
ground. The natives always cover themselves up
very closely, head and feet, if they happen to be
the possessors of a blanket or a cotton chader
(sheet), when they lie down on the ground or
elsewhere to sleep. The chader serves them a
very useful purpose; by day they wrap it about
them, and at night, when they sleep, it serves as
covering. In the night we were aroused by a cry,
"a wolf." It seems that he had crept up and
caught the clothing of one of the men and was
tugging at it, when he awoke. I usually traveled
on horseback, and often at night, in localities
where there was danger of being attacked by
wolves.

We had some very pleasant acquaintances
in the station, among the English residents, and



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tjz Tw:eNTY-ON:e V:eARS in India.

all were very kind and took much interest in our
work, and helped us with liberal donations. Our
station doctor (civil surgeon, as called in India)
was indeed a character. He was an Irishman of
the most rabid kind, and intensely bitter toward
the English. He would indulge more freely in
his criticisms while with us than he would under
other circumstances. The English are very out-
spoken and free in their criticisms of public men
and measures. I do not think they would have
relished criticisms from us, like what they made
to us freely. We were very careful to avoid put-
ting them to the test in such ways. The magis-
trate and collector was a good man, and showed
us great kindnesses in many ways. Our work
was full of interest, and fully absorbed all our
powers. There were times when we were well-
nigh overwhelmed by the darkness and wicked-
ness that confronted us; but when we saw that
some gain was being made, some were interested
and moved by the Word, we were encouraged and
enabled to press forward in our great work. Our
Bazar preaching was attended with a good deal of



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Tw:eNTy-ONE Y^ars in India. 173

interest, and we kept it up regularly. In Novem-
ber we went to the great Mela on the Ganges, the
"Puran Massee," where we preached to great
crowds of people for about ten days. The season
had been one of anxiety to me on account of my
wife's illness. She had passed nearly all the sea-
son in Naini Tal, and had been very dangerously
ill a part of the time. The physician who attended
her said she must leave India and return home.
This came upon me suddenly, and was a very
great trial. It had been impressed upon me that
we were to live and die in India. I strongly hoped
to do so. Our physician in Moradabad urged our
going, assuring me that by doing so only could
her life be prolonged. It was a real sorrow to
leave the work, opening as it was with so much
promise, and I felt I had now just reached a point
where I could prosecute it with comfort to my-
self and with a hope of success. It requires two
or three years to get the language so as to be able
to use it with facility and ease. It takes a longer
time to so learn the people that we can really un-
derstand them and see things from their stand-



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174 Twenty-one Years in India.

point, and we must do this before we can influence
them very much. After fully considering the
matter it became evident to all that we must sever
our connection with the work, for awhile at least,
and return home. In those days we held our rela- -
tion to our home Conferences. I did not wish to
be an occasion of expense to the Missionary So-
ciety when at home, so I asked for an appoint-
ment in my Conference. I have mentioned Main
Phul Singh, one of our early converts from
among the Sikhs, and also his wife's death; hear-
ing that we were to leave a little sooner than he
supposed, he walked all night to reach us, that I
might baptize a young woman and marry him
to her before leaving. This service was held be-
fore daylight on the morning of our departure
from Moradabad. We reached home early in
June, a few days more than seven years since
sailing from Boston.



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CHAPTER X.
Medical Work.

WHII.E on our journey over the mountains,
from Landour to Naini Tal, in 1859, we were
frequently applied to for medicine by the people
living along the way, and I became much, im-
pressed with the importance of having some
knowledge of medicine. My attention had pre-
viously been directed to this subject in Calcutta.
I went out to visit a village of native Christians
in the rice-growing region south of Calcutta,
where the land is for several months flooded, and
the people work in the water a good deal. Of
course, in such a region there is a large amount
of malaria, and it is very sickly.

Here I saw how important it was for the

missionary in charge of these people to be able

to render them medical aid. I then, for the first,

became impressed with the fact that in being out

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176 Twenty-one Years in India.

among the people away from the larger towns
and cities it would not only be desirable, but abso-
lutely necessary, to give medicine to the sick.
India is a hot country, and in some seasons of the
year steaming with malaria, and fevers of a
malarious type are sure to prevail, and all other
maladies that follow in the wake of malaria.

The mass of the people in all especially mala-
rious districts, if not actually prostrated by fever,
suffer from enlarged spleen, disorders of the liver
and digestive system, and are sure to be in a low
condition of health generally. Their priests are
supposed to be able to cure diseases of the body
as well as the soul.

They naturally enough suppose that mission-
aries must have some knowledge of medicine, and
can treat their bodily ailments. They have great
faith, as a rule, in our system of medical treat-
ment, and will come to us sooner than go to their
own people for aid in times of difficulty. The use
of medicine seems to them a necessary part of the
duties of a missionary, and they take it for granted
that he is skilled in the healing art. As time



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Twenty-one Years in India. 177

went on, I did what I could to qualify myself to
treat the more common diseases I found prevail-
ing as I went about among the people away from
the centers, or Sudder Stations. I had medicines
put up in convenient form for diseases that pre-
vailed at different seasons, and always took them
with me as I went among the people on my tours.
This gained an entrance for me into many non-
Christian families, and made friends, removed
prejudice, and made them more favorably dis-
posed towards us, and towards the native Chris-
tians. In all this we are simply following in the
footsteps of the Master Himself. He healed dis-
eases and gained the attention and sympathy of
the people thereby. In adopting this method in
prosecuting our work, we can not be mistaken.
India affords a very favorable field for this kind
of work. I think every missionary, male and
female, would do well to procure some knowledge
of medicine, enough to enable them to treat com-
mon diseases, as fevers, dysentery, enlargement
of the spleen, rheumatic troubles, common skin
diseases, congestions of the liver, and to know
I?



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178 TwENTY-ON^ Years in India.

what to do in emergencies or accidents. If one
proposes to be about among the people very much
in India, I am sure this is very desirable, and I
have no doubt it is in other foreign countries as
well. It is especially necessary to know how to
take care of our health in foreign climates, that
differ very much from our own. We can not do
in India, as regards being out in the sun, as we
are accustomed to do at home. Many, when they
first arrive in India, think the missionaries are
too careful, and so go on and expose themselves
recklessly, and are soon stricken down and die,
or have to be sent home, and so become a great
expense to the society that sent them out. We
are solemnly bound not to be careless, or impru-
dent, in the treatment of ourselves on this ground.
Our Missionary Society is very kind and generous
in the treatment of those it sends out to foreign
lands to represent them. It is a matter of honor,
therefore, to guard against unnecessary exposure
of our health. We are sometimes so placed by
the demands of the work that we can hardly avoid
some ride in this direction. In such cases one is



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TWKNTY-ON^ Y^ARS IN InDIA. 1 79

certainly excusable. We often expose ourselves,
no doubt, through ignorance; this may be ex-
cusable, and it may not be; much depends upon
circumstances. It seems to me that a carefully
prepared work on this subject, with directions for
the treatment of the more common and prevail-
ing diseases, and what to do in emergencies and
accidents, placed in the hands of every missionary
going out, could but be very beneficial. I have
long hoped some one well qualified might take
up this subject and prepare such a book. It
should not be a large book, nor especially learned,
but simple and plain, so that non-professional
people could easily understand it. I do not advo-
cate doctors for India, so much as a good prac-
tical knowledge of nursing, or how to care for
the sick. There is not the need for medical mis-
sionaries in India that there is in some other coun-
tries, as China for instance. The Government
has a very extensive medical system extending all
over British India. In all the great cities are
well-regulated hospitals, where the poor can ob-
tain treatment and care free of all charges. In



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i8o Tw^NTY-ON^ Years in India.

the smaller places, cities of from ten to twenty
thousand population, are located branch hospitals
and dispensaries, where people can obtain treat-
ment and care in time of sickness. There is, per-
haps, no country in the world better cared for
than India is, in this, and in most other respects
as regards care for the unfortunate classes.
Too much can not be said in commendation of
the British Government in India as regards all
such features. A man goes out as a medical mis-
sionary, and naturally desires to use his medical
knowledge to the fullest and best extent. He
must have a hospital, and that involves a consid-
erable outlay, and it is not required, except in the
out-of-way localities, where he does not care to
spend his life. We have a fairly equipped hos-
pital in Pithoragarh, founded by Dr. Gray many
years ago, which has been of great service to the
work there. We have a large and superior hos-
pital, for women, in Bareilly, which is doing a
great work, but we do not greatly need many ex-
pensive hospitals of this kind. Every missionary
may well desire to have some knowledge of medi-



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Tw:eNTY-oN:e Y^ARS IN India. i8i

cine, as away from the cities and larger villages,
where we find hospitals located, are large sections
of country where no such institutions are found.
In all these sections, as we travel through them,
we can do much good by having a supply of medi-
cine along, especially if we know how to use it;


1 2 3 4 5 6 8 10 11 12 13

Online LibraryG. Drysdale (George Drysdale) DempseyTubular and other iron girder bridges, particularly describing the Britannia and Conway tubular bridges; with a sketch of iron bridges and illustrations of the application of malleable iron to the art of bridge-building. With wood engravings → online text (page 8 of 13)