Page images

of the bathing habit amongst the more recent immigrants is marked and gratifying. Under the regulations of the Board of Health many men seeking accommodation in the cheap lodging houses in the vicinity are first sent to the bath-house. A considerable number of these are men from the lowest grades of labor, including many tramps. Nevertheless, great pains are taken to make the building always attractive to the more respectable classes of the citizens, and the members of the board feel that this result has been very successfully accomplished.

The opening of the new South End playground on land recently purchased by the city, only two blocks from Dover street, will undoubtedly considerably increase the usefulness of the bath-house. The combination of these two healthgiving municipal undertakings is certainly a very fortunate OI) 62.


The laundry at Dover street has been kept busy throughout the year. Its capacity during the summer was considerably overdrawn, and it was necessary as usual to carry on the small laundry at North End park. The North End park laundry was used particularly for cleansing the bathing suits used at the different beaches.


In addition to the recommendations already made as to floating baths, the members of the board wish to present two suggestions which seem to them to be of the first order of importance.

The need of a new gymnasium in East Boston has been deeply felt by us for a number of years. The present structure, originally hastily put up as a skating rink, is now in a dilapidated and almost dangerous condition. Many special expenses are incurred in order simply to hold this plant together in such a way as to provide for the very great demands which are made on its facilities. The municipal gymnasium idea had its beginning for Boston and for the whole country at this point, and it seems logically appropriate that the next considerable forward step which is taken by the city in working out this remarkably successful and useful idea should take the form of an adequate, wellequipped, model gymnasium at the birthplace of the system. The land on which the present structure stands is extensive and well situated. The fact that this land came as a present to the city from a private citizen, out of interest in the gymnasium work, is a strong additional reason why a new and suitable gymnasium building should be erected upon it. This department since it was created has received no appropriation for construction in East Boston. It would seem as if that district now had a strong claim for a suitable appropriation. It may fairly also be said that more interest has been taken in the gymnasium work by public-spirited citizens, in East Boston than in any other district in the city, and the public at large in that section have shown a special appreciation of such advantages as have been offered.

We would again strongly urge an appropriation to provide one or two underground convenience stations to be located in prominent squares in the business section of the city. The necessity of such facilities certainly require no emphasis, and the enormous use which is made of the present convenience station on the Common shows the valuable public service which can be rendered in this way by a comparatively slight expenditure of money.


The members of the board desire again to express their appreciation of the valuable and intelligent services which the Secretary, Mr. Charles F. Morse, has rendered in every

division of its work. It has been a great source of pleasure to the trustees that so large a proportion of the employees of the department enter into the work of the department with keen interest and appreciation, They have reason also to feel that their efforts have been generously appreciated by the great body of the people of the city.




The appropriation for the department for 1902 and 1903 was $135,000; revenue received $5,458.47 — making a total

of $140,458.47.

To this amount an additional sum of

$19,634.62 was added, through the courtesy of Mayor Collins, making the total expenditure for the fiscal year $160,082.09. The following is an itemized table of its expenditures

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

Charlestown beach Ç to e 147,028
Chelsea bridge & e te {} 64,196
Wood Island park. & * * 94,220
Jeffries point to ge © * 21,260
Border street e • e e 56,614
North End park . g . . . 179,092
Warren bridge § e © o 63,394
Craigie's bridge . * g te 126,180
West Boston bridge . © wo 72,512
Dover-street bridge * e & 63,615
L and K streets . to to e 927,108
Commercial point . • • * 40,222
Orchard-park swimming pool . & 60,119
Savin Hill beach . to © {} 25,849
Brighton bridge . go e to 12,860
Spring-street swimming pool . * 20,665
Beaches and baths, total • . . so © 1,974,934
Attendance at all-the-year-round baths . o 604,908

2,579,842 TYLER—STREET G.YMNASIUM. To the Bath Commissioners :

In submitting to you my annual report as medical director of the Tyler-street gymnasium, permit me to call your attention to a few statistics:

Total number examined . * e g * o 139 Number requiring chest work e e so & 20 Number requiring heart work o e & e 8 Number requiring spinal work to to © to 9

In this latter class the work was intended to strengthen the muscles of the back rather than to remedy any defect in the spine itself. In each case the height, weight, lung capacity as shown by the spirometer, the rate and character of the heart’s action, together with various other measurements, were taken carefully, recorded on cards furnished by the department and filed away for future reference. The number examined was nearly equally divided between working boys and men. To consider more closely the physical condition of those examined, forty cases were taken at random from the whole number, and it was found that the average age was twenty years, the average weight 133 pounds, and the average height five feet five and seven-eighth inches. In comparing these measurements with the normal standard it will be seen that the average is much below what it should be, for a person five feet five and seven-eighth inches in height ought to weigh 149 pounds instead of 130 pounds as here. In seeking a cause for this under-development a few things may be considered, e.g. : Nationality. Of these 40 cases, 18 were Americans, 9 Irish, 9 Jewish, 4 English, yet in none of these taken as a whole should we expect any falling off from the normal standard. Occupation.— Seven students, 6 clerks, 5 printers, 4 salesmen, 3 teamsters, 2 machinists, 2 freight handlers, 2 elevator boys, 2 bookkeepers, 2 expressmen, 1 civil engineer, 1 car inspector, 1 brakeman, 1 waiter, 1 porter. It does not seem necessary to consider each variety of occupation in the preceding list with special reference to its effect on the physical development of the individual, for the diverse character of their work excludes the possibility that a sufficient cause could be found in any one or two of them to

« PreviousContinue »