One woman's first-hand account of opioid addiction in 1890

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One woman's first-hand account of opioid addiction in 1890 - A FEMALE OPIIBI EATER TEI-IS HEK AWFUL TALK AS...
A FEMALE OPIIBI EATER TEI-IS HEK AWFUL TALK AS A WARNING KKANT PARTICULARLY FOR HER BEX The Ktndneas of an Old Aunt Leads a Pretty Child to the Edge of a Hell and I ee Her There for Several Years Reform, and Itelapses How the Cure Cam at Last. ETORT here told la no fancy sketoh, no flight of the Imagination. It Is taken from my own expe- js 4 rleece, from a diary f f which is written orr my mind in lines of suffering and ter ror, never to be effaced while life remains In my body. I was quite a child when I commenced the occasional nse of opium. Caring a severe spell of neuralgia, to whloh complaint I was subject from an early age, an old aunt who used It for her cough, administered to me a dose of a certain elixir of opium. I had suffered for several hours, and without Intending to do me injury my aunt gave me the medicine to kill the pain, thinking that would be the end of it. She had never taken it except In small quantities when compelled to do so to stop the paroxysm of coughing, and the Idea of Its danger as a temptation never once oo-curred to her. After I had taken fifteen drops of it In an old blue mug, mixed with water, she patted me gently upon my aching bead and said, "Be still and you'll drop to sleep before you know It, and wake up free from pain." Before I had ceased to notice the bitter taste of the opium I began to feel Its effects. The most delightful sensations of perfeot ease and sweet content stole gradually over me, and I felt a most nn usual exhilaration and I felt equal to anything. I longed for some one to express my happiness to, but being forced to remain alone I found my mind and Imagination running riot among the most delightful dreams and anticipations for future pleasure. I was anxious for the morning so that I could meet my companions and resume my duties. It was unfortunate for me that my first experience of the effects of opium was caused by a dose of this elixir, for that Is one of the most dangerous of the known forms of the drug. To those who are susceptible to Its influences almost any form of opium is acceptable, but the elixir of opium Is doubly dangerous In that it is purged of all the disagreeable and nauseating principles of the drug, leaving only tbe attractive and exhilarating effects. The pain had left ine as if by magic and I spent the most delightful night I ever experienced in my abort life. Next morning I awaked with a dreamy sense of pleasure, which continued through the day. and not until the next night did I sleep off the last lingering effects. Thus commenced my acquaintance with opium. Alter that whenever I had a bad suell of headache I went immediately to my aunt for a dose of her "drops" and very soon I did not mind my spells of neuralgia and complained of it when I really had no pain, just to find an excuse to take tbe medicine, r in ally my aunt hesitated about giving tbe elixir to me because I asked for It so often; tlien I did what 1 would not have done a few weeks before under any circumstances, 1 took it without her knowledge. I drifted into tbe habit Influenced alone by the fascination it exercised over my temperament. I never realized for one m6ment THE PRECIPICE upon which I stood, and before I became a woman Opium was the divinity at whose shrine I worshiped before all others. It exhilarated a naturally lively inspiration, and I Inst nothing by its moderate and occasional use, and thus It became the ruling influence of my lile. My dearest friend did not suspect me of its use, and the only visible effect at that time was a certain iistlessness and indifference to all outside influences of worry or trouble upon lnysclr or others, when I naturally possessed a warm and sympathetic heart. At 15 I was not a confirmed opium user by any means, but I kept a supply always accessible, so that 1 could indulge myself when 1 needed a few drops to drive away dlsagree-ble sensations, either mental or physical. When I could not sleep at night I readily succumbed to the temptation to take a few drops from tbe little viai 1 kept sowed Into tbo head of my mattress. Had my parents dreamed of my weakness and taken from me all means of gratifying it, I might have been saved years of bitier sorrow, humiliation and suffering. Self-denial, moral courage and strength of purpose would have conquered tbe growing desire for this medicine. I was only drifting gently down the tide, and was not as yet at the uiorcy of the power which was to envelop and surround me, leatlng me helpless and broken in the years to come. At first one small bottle of the elixir would last me a month, fpr It only took fifteen or twenty drops to Effect me. Gradually 1 arrived at a Point when I used a bottle every week. I had no idea how rapidly the disease gained ground, and had never heard much of opium or opium eaters in my life. One seldom bears even now of reformed opium users going forth like the reformed drunkard, John li. though, to warn the public of its horrors and fortilv them against its temptations by the ftory of their own downfall and sufferings. Le Quincey has given to tbe world a most thrilling account of his service and suffering under the dominion of his OPIUM THEALLDOM, of how hewroke his chains npon three separate occasions, and at last died a martyr to his own weakness; yet I, in common with hundreds of others, had never read De tjulncey until I too had a sad experience to relate of opium, its pleasures and Us ains. 1 married very young and ail my 'lends looked uron me as a wonderful m n - J ,ger for one of my age and experience. My family relied greatly upon me, believing that I was dally developing strength of character as I acquired a woman's dignity and years. It was simply tbe effect of the opium, which was fast becomimg my chief thought In life and under Its influence I could bear anything with coolness and fortitude. Sometimes I resisted j my desire to indulge my weakness for saverai days. I knew my husband had no toleration for such weaknesses, and I feared the loss of his confidence, bis respect and love should he ever discover my fault. The impression that opium eaters can leave off and tatte up tbe habit at will, as drunkards remain sober for weeks and months and then get on a spree, is a misiaae. opium la a more jealous anu exacting master than whisky ; Its chains more closely riveted than thnstA ftf other ntimulanta Hurt 1 haan takln. J the drug every day I wonld have been un- -aoie to leave on a single aose at my accus-, ,? totned hour without an awful feeling of de-yg- pression and uneasiness, and a week's abstinence would have unfitted me for my accustomed duties, and caused me such pain and sleeplessness that my family would have u'scevered that something unusual was tbe r utter. Yet I bad not as yet become regular i my time for taking it, nor entirely , pendent on It for all tbe sleep I enjoyed. A I e natural constitution, energetic hablta and ich outdoor exerotse enabled me still to w off Its bad effects. Fear of deteotion n tie ine more prudent andiless abandoned to . Its Influence than 1 would have been otherwise. 1 had been married about a year when 1 became very unwell and accompanied mv parents to the springs. I was put under the care of a prominent physician and very soon began to recover my strength. Quite a number of young ladies were in our party and for some time I got very tew opportunities to indulge my secret vice As 1 grew stronger I acemed to crave opium more and more and long for my nice, quiet little home where 1 wss not under the surveillance of my loving but anxious parents. Upon one occasion I slipped up stairs to my room leaving tbe others in tbe ballroom, to indulge myself without danger of detection. Mother teurhig that I hud beon taken suddenly ill, followed closely upon my heel, and 1 turned upon her fiercely demanding why I was not allowed my freedom for five minutes without being spied after bf-omebody. bue was a gentle, sweet womai ma she turned away mat ie Is never er De- fore. I soon left for home, and MY PHYSICIAN accouiPaVsiod na to mj Ualn,a 'tut bafoia witti an expression . uer bear lace plainly said: "1 a afraid Ann demented" for I am ti-,-u to siky I had spoken roughly or dlsrer. tectfuiir to h It pulled out from the depot he took a amal 1 vial from his pocket and handed It to me, saying: "When you feel badly or any return of certain aymtoras and restlessness take a few drops of this medicine." My heart leaped for joy. I saw that the bottle Contained laudanum and 1 saw a way of gratifying my craving for opium and a way of escape If my laujlly commented upon the habit 1 had of keeping It on band. Being In moderate circumstances, I was not always able to purchase the elixir of opium, and therefore bad been cbecked somewhat In my use of It by the high price set upon it. As It was, I had used large sums In Its purchase and added them to the various items set down in my housekeeping aeoounts. to keep from being. suspected. I determined to substitute laudanum for the elixir, as I could get five ounces of the former for the sura expended upon one small vial of the elixir. The elixir would have done me far less Injury In tbe long run had I clung to its use Instead of taking laudanum in its place. I begun using the laudanum very freely under cover of the doctor's direction, whereas ha had never dreamed I would take snch base advantage of his trust. I even got my husband to procure It for me a few times by tailing him what tbe doctor bad said. I abused the confidence placed in me so severely that in a few weeks I had made long strides on the downward path. 1 took three large doses a day and felt utterly good for nothing It I happened to postpone or leave one off by acoi- dent. I silenced conscience by saying I would leave off the habit as soon as I felt perfectly strong and well. Onoe I came near being found out, and it gave me a good scare. My husband had bought me avialof laudanum a few uays before and given it to me saying, "You will doubtless have no more use for this lie stuff after this bottle is used and I have brongbt sufficient to last halt a year in this bottle." I had acquiesced, and to meat him with a new snpply a fewdays afterward would have been a circumstance hard to explain away to the least suspicious man In existence. About a week afterwards I entered my house with tbe same bottle refilled at another drug store, but wrapped in brown paper. As I came In I ran against my husband In the sitting room. He took the bottle out of my hand, remarking carelessly, "You seem to be going into the wholesale drug business since that trip to the springs." 1 controlled mv countenance perteotly and quietly repossessed myself of tbe bottle, replying playfully, that 1 was not going to tell bim all of my secrets and encourage idle curiosity, and I blew him a kiss from my finger tips and passed on devoutly thankful for my narrow escape from a very unpleasant predicament. Not long afterwards I had another much narrower escape from discovery. I sent my nurse lais one afternoon for a supply of laudanum. My servants always called It "Airs. X'a medicine," fori never admitted for a moment to them or myself that I took opium on the sly, and without my husband's knowledge. I would not confess to myself that I was an "opium eater." My supply had given out late that afternoon, and knowing that my husband would soon be borne and cut off the chances of my getting the bottle refilled that day, I sent my nurse post hasto to the drug store before his return. She stayed so long 1 began to get restless, and, going to the front door, I saw her coming down tbe street, my husband just behind her. My heart stood still with fear. I thought he had passed the store while she was getting the medicine and gone in, catching ber in the act of purchasing It for me, and consequently found out tuat I still purchased laudanum In verv large quantities long after he believed I had ceased to use it et all. Holding my baby before my burning face I waited with despair in my heart and a stubborn determination to deny having sent for tne laudanum, but to say I had sent for aqua ammonia and the plrl had made a mistake and bought laudanum instead. I would not give up the use of it. for opium bad grown to be more to me than husband, children, or home. I looked into my husband's face as he came near, and tne kind and loving glance with which he met my eyes was assurance sufficient of his continued respect and confidence to place me at my ease and make me thankful Indeed at my second narrow escape, although. 1 was deceiving every hour of my life the mau whose name I bore, upon whose bosom I rested and whose borne I shared, holding bis honor In my keeping, yet living a dual life since the day he married me. Pretty soon he took the buby for a walk and I was at liberty to interview my nurse. She came in answer to my summons and handing me the bottle said: "Here, ma'm, Is your medicine. Mr. X came IN THE DRUQ STORE and axed mo what I was gltting, and I tole him some truck for Annt Maria." The cook had been seized with violent cramp that very day, and I bad administered a strong toddy with most grat'fylng results. But I felt keenly the humiliation of having a secret In common with my servants, and being compelled to accept the girl's assistance in deceiving my husband. thus placing mvaelf under obligations to her and making myself a party to deception. 1 was glad to know sho had saved me from his anger and' contempt, and I gave ber money which she accepted in silence, but with the tacit understanding that it was a reward for tbe lie she had uttered to screen me from my own husband's anger and contempt. The shame of itl It is dreadful for a woman to marry a man who is addicted to drink, out for a mau to be tied to an habitual opium iflend who never draws a breath free from tbe influence of her drug. .is ten times worse, for she is under the dominion of a power that saps her life, paralyzes ber enereles and destroys tbe foundation of moral truth and virtue. No man would knowingly place his honor in tbe keeping of such a woman. My eyes were now thoroughly opened to my slavery, and I found soon after the circumstances related above that I was dependent tor all the sleep and rest I got upon my daily portion of laudanum. During a severe illness that came upon me soon after, I was put under the care of a trained nurse. 1 did not ask for a narcotic for several hours, knowing that my medical attendant had left me a composing draught in case of restlessnessorpain. 1 never dreamed that I would have any difficulty in netting the nurse to give it to me when I felt that I could do without It no longer. That time came all too soon, and while she was preparing for bed 1 asked fur the medicine. She refused positively, saying, "You are under my care and must submit to ray judgment and I am opposed to ladies using sucn medicines too freely. That is why so many young wives and mothers are good for nothing, etc." Then she went on to tell me to go to sleep and get a healthy, natural rest, which would be much better for me than artificial rest. W hat mockery to one who had not slept the natural sleep of health for several years! the went on talking about the Injury of bromide, chloral, opium and coeaine until I was ready to scream, and I almost hated her. To think my hired nurse would dare dictate to me, and I was at her mercy unless 1 made a scene and betrayed my true condition. I endured the pain and nervousness as long as 1 could, for I bad not taken any laudanum since early In the morning, and It was now nearly midnight. My hands were slinking like aspen leaves, and a profuse perspiration Lroke out out all over my body and face. I gaped continually, and chills ran down mv back, and I could hardly keep from crying out for opium 1 I knew the nurse would prove obdurate and refuse to give It tome, even if she knew I needed It badlv. Then 1 was afraid she would recognize my symptoms and expose me. After concealing my vice for years I could not have It discovered now by any lack of self-control on my part. After tossing from side to side for hours, it seemed to me, she come to me and felt my pulse, and being alarmed at Its feebied action she said: "Can't you rest; what can be the matter?""l want Mr.X ."I said; he will go for the doctor and bring me something to quiet me and relieve me from this intolerable torture. 1 was almost afraid to be alone with her lor tear she would discover the primary cause of my torture. 6he gave me ten drops of the quieting medicine, which was like giving a hungry man a crumb when he begs for bread. Every nerve and fiber of my body was calling for "opium," and she gave me ten drops of a feeble preparation, when I could have drank half the contents of the bottle with Impunity. 1 sent for my husband and he was ao frightened by my appearance he Insisted upon going for the doctor. I was afraid of the doctor's experlsneed eye and refused to let him leave me, tailing him of the nurse's neglect and refusal to give me tbe soothing draugbt until 1 became nervous, add I suggested a larger dose of the medicine and his presence by my side until I got better, lie always felt pleased at any depend-ance in my conduct toward blm, and be hastened to get the medicine, which be placed on tbe stand near my bed and then went out to get a glasa of fresh water to take tbe taste out of my mouth. 1 seized the vial and swallowed half the contents, then threw it down and quickly pushed the table over upon it. spilling ail that was left of the medicine except about twenty drops which he saved and gave me. I knew no other way to get relief except the plan 1 had put into execution and my hunband believed It was an accident. 1 soon became quiet and dismissed my husband, telling 111 in that his magnetic presence had caluied me as much as the medicine he had administered, l'oor lellow, little did he dream that neither the medicine lio baa given wenorjiis jxcisncehad.aone me any good, my deceitful stratagem had done it. It would take too much time and space to tell eaoh step of my downfall, every stage of my disease, let it suffice to say B HI PACE DO WH WARD wss rapid, morally, mentally, physically There can be no question about op lum and morphine destroying the keen, moral sense of Its victims. Just as surely aa it dries nn tbe salivary glands and Impairs digestion does it destroy truthfulness and honor. You will think what a weak and criminal fool 1 was to continue my journey down, well knowing Its dangers and final consequences. But I only knew and realized this too late to turn back. I had lost my win power and determination by the use of the oplnm, until I was entirely in its power. We ail shrink from the agony of the surgeon's knife or tbe rough touch of a nerve, yet this is not more painfnl than abstinence to the opium-eater. There Is one road to being cured of tbe opium habit and all of its victims must travel through thu Valley of the Shadow of Death before they reach tbe goal. 'Those who drink the juice of the poppy must pay denr for their dreams. As for myself, I had begun to bate my bondage most sincerely and crave my freedom during the periods of Intense mental agony I sometimes experienced. But I doubled my dose to make me forget tbe remorse Induced by the very fault 1 then indulged. I hated myself for the deceptions I practiced, the lies I told. In presenting these facts before others I am telling the plain unvarnished story of my life, and its curse from one of tbe most terrible and secret vices of the ages, hoping honestly and sincerely, I may indnee some poor s iater to leave it off before she has gone too far, and wrecked her life as I did mine, to lay it upon the Altar of Opiuml I became daily more siftvlsh and less willing to exert myself. All the pleasure derived In tne beginning from tbe drug had long beoome a thing of tbe past and tbe opium was used simply as a sad necessity. My children were naturally healthy and blessed with a good father, who took my place In a great measure. I had not allowed them to receive nourishment from me as infants on acoount of my habit. I made the excuse that I was too delicate to nourish great healthy babes like mine. I was very strlot about giving them narcotic or stimulants, and positively forbade a drop being given them under any circumstances. This prejudice on my behalf against such medicines may have led my husband to believe me opposed to Its use in my own person. Although he evidently noticed a marked change in me I had been so energetic and ambitious and was now so Indifferent and careless he trusted me and sorrowed in silence. TLe beauty, brilliancy and amiable disposition he bad loved and admired in me as a girl were all gone now, and tbe woman he had wooed and married was a myth, a piece of lifeless flesh now, sleeping and dreaming away her life My craving for opium increased rapidly, and I took about three ounces a day. One intensely hot summer tbe doctor advised my hussand to send us to the monntalns of Colorado. It was settled that we should stay at a country house owned by some distant relatives of my husband. It was a wilJk; lonely and lovely locality, the scenery grand. But I discovered to my horror after I got there the nearest village and drug store was at least seven miles away. Mr. X. had said, "You care so little for society, Annie.lt really does not matter about the place being Isolated," and I had answered "No." tbiuking there wonid be a drug store near, of course. 1 had been to the country before, and found great difficulty In getting laudanum In large enough quantities to last me several days at a time, and since then I bad doubled my quantity. I determined to manage tbe best 1 conid. and not borrow trouble. We bad every comfort that a thoughtful husband and father could think of and money procure. Several weeks had gone by and we had got on very nicely. Late one Saturday evening I went to my room to take a dose of laudanum and I found my bottle nearly empty. I had forgotten to send to the village early in the day. I did not allow myseif to worry, I determined to pay the boy to go early the next morning, even if it was bunday. I arose early and aocompanled tbe ladies to church, which was held by a straggling clergyman in an old log school house close by. Coming home I asked if I could tend the boy fur some raedtcino I expected from my husband and which I needed very much. They replied, to my horror, that tbe boy had ridden the only horse across the mountain to see bis mother, ten miles off. Is there no other way I asked, putting estrone control npon my feelings and hiding my chagrin. "1 know of no one until to-morrow," was the Indifferent reply. I trembled all over with dread of the situation. 1 thought seriously of walking the distance myself, but did not know the road and bad no companion. Then I did not wish to excite tbe comment of a lot of country folks over curious about tbe affairs of others anyhow. 1 though ail day trying to find some way out of my dilemma. I wished a thousand times I had never put myself at the mercy of the horrid laudanum. A helpless sufferer every time circumstances oombined to deprive me for even a short period of the drus. How dearly I had already paid for every happy hour It bad given me? 'the mania a potu of tbe whisky drunkard is hardly a parallel case with tbe suffering of the opium fiend deprived of his drug. 1 did everything within reason to procure laudanum or some substitute in vain. There was nothing between me and HOURS OF KEENEST PAIN, although I bad prayed most earnestly for some means or escape irom a niguc ot horror. I tried to listen to tne commonplace chatter around me, and I envied the old negro woman who cooked for us as I saw her leaning back fast asleep in her ohalr. I would have changed places with her gladly to have avoided the horror of that night. I tried to read after the others retired to rest, but tne most thrilling event that ever happened could not have chained my tortured mind for two minutes that night. I was utterly wretched yet in abject fear of the coming hours when I might lose my self-control and cry aloud for opiuml I paced my room like a caged animal and trembled, sneezed, held my bands oyer my mouth to keep from sciMaming aloud In agony. I cursed the day I was born and bit tbe flesh on my arms to try and forget the pain that was killing me I At tbe first streak of dawn I rushed to find some one to go for laudanum at any price or to go myself if I found nobody, for I felt that I would Kill myself rather than suffer such torture. I met the boy retnrning from his visit to his mother and I offered him a large bribe to go back to the village and he went, liow I spent tbe interval I will never te able to tell. I only know I was not still five minutes but ran from one place to another until it struck me to go and meet the boy with the laudanum. At last I saw him coming upon his old jaded steed I ran forward, jeraed the bottle from his hand, slipping the bribe In its place. I disappeared behind a cluaiD of trees and losing my self-control burst out talking and kissing the bottle. I tell upon my knees and thanked God for the relief from the most Intense suffering on earth. I drank an ounce of laudanum thinking of the relief it would shortly bring my tortured nerves and frenzied brain. By tbe time I reached home I was completely under the influence of the master . I dared not discard. In another hour I was resting so quietly I hardly realized tbe Intense agony I had . suffered such a short time before. I was worse than ever after that, and being in poor health I drank more deeply than ever of tne terrible drug after I got home. I had commenced getting my drug on credit, but had my bills kept separate from the orug bill for the household, which my husband always paid. One day a new clerk handed my bill to my bus-band witb bis own. He came home looking terribly grave and stern, and 1 knew by intuition the minnte I looked at him that he bad found me out; my day of deception was over. He finally asked If it could be possible, that I had used all of that laudanum in a month when, in iact, I had used double tbe quantity. At first I made up my mind to lie about it, but one look into his eyes and at my own pallid skin and luster-less orbs convinced me that It would ba utterly useless. strange to relate, when I found out that 1 had lost his confidence and respect it awakened my own deadened affections, and I determined to regain his love and respect. I went to work to try to taper off my drug, and upon consulting a dear friend she advised me to go to New York and put myself under the care of a physician. I did so and really got down to forty-one drops of laudanum a day. I improved in health and appearance so much that I hardly knew myself and my doctor sent me home as be believed, a reformed and cured opium fiend after fifteen years of slavery to tbe drug. My husband was delighted and seemed to forget ail of Tnf rifHAPPT PAST. Everyone said I bad regained my youth and beauty, and that I must be 25 Instead of ten years older. I still took-a little laudanum at nlgnt, but only forty drops, and that was done so secretly nobody knew it but myself, for my husband was too gtnerous to watcli me. Suddenly a great calamity came upon me. My husband went South on business and died while there of a prevailing er idomic. In a few years I was alone la tbe world with my little children to take care of. True I had no pecuniary care for my dear husband had left me very comfortably off, but I was seized with a terrible remorse for those wretched years during which I had made 1:1s h:e u burden. I went back to 'jay old habit worse than ever. I went Into the deep country and I substituted morphine foj mj iauiUauw, la tne cents el a year I had lost every vestige ot my youth, as far as appearances went, and the ravages made by the morphine In one year were more terrible than the effect of fifteen years of laudanum drinking. I bbcame a mere nonentity and lived in seclusion dead to all outside Influences. Another misfortune came npon me and awakened me from my lethargy. I lost my eldest son and all my earthly possessions within a few days of each other. Ruin stared me In the face I My father came to see what he could do for me. He was greatly shocked at my appearance as be bad not seen me since my girlhood. He asked me why I looked so stupid and slept so much in the day? I told him I was troubled and lost so much sleep at night. One day we were seated in my bed room with my little daughter playing with a scrap of red paper. She took it to her grandfather, saying, "Pretty paper, daddy, off mamma's bottle?" 1 did not notice what she was doing or saying until I caught my father's horrified expression as be looked closely at tbe bit ot red paper and found It to be a part of the wrapper from a morphine bottle. He spoke after along silence saying: "Annie, what is this I see and hear, are you living on this drug, and have you allowed it to eteal away your womanhood, your youth, your usefulness, and make you the failure that you are as a mother and wife?" 1 would not answer his words; they struck home sharper than a two-edged sword to my wretched, burdened heart. Out of my baby's ilttle lips was I condemned again. "Mamma got bottles in her top drawer ; lots of pretty bottles. " THE HORROIi OF MT FATHER'S FACE lroze my blood. He seemed deeply distressed and said be would do anything to help me, to save me from myself. "I can not believe that you, above ail others, could have destroyed your own life in cold blood and made your husband's one long martyrdom for this accursed opium 1" I flung myself at his feet and confessed my sin. wishing that I could die. I told him how I had always craved, craved, craved the drue from my childhood. He explained to me how I had inherited this ceaseless craving and promised to help me to give it up, and I promised to do my best to conquer for once and for oil. For several weeks I had been tormented with horrid visions and terrible oppression. I could not rest as of old. Iteptlles and alt kinds of loathsome creeping things tormented and crawled over me when I sleptortried to sleep. My father consulted physicians and they told him I must certainty die most miserably In a short time. I had reached that stage in my opium eating where I suffered more than the poor whisky drunkard tormented with delirium. 1 had reached the stage depicted In all its horror by Da Quincey when the opium fiend cannot take his drug because it torments him with visions worse than hell, and yet he cannot leave It off, for his poisoned blood and aching body cries out for its stimulant. Ail the tortures ot of the Inquisition could not have been so horrible as the fate staring me In the facet There was one chance in ten for me and that lay through the valley of death. I was already struggling in the "Slough of Despond." so what did It matter. If I only could htive chosen an easy painless death by electricity, anything instead of tbe tortures belore me, behind me. at my sides ! I could exercise no choice; I gave myself up to my father and be put me in tbe hands of the ncrse and physician and they took my morphine from me. A few words to tell you I lived and I draw the curtain of this scene of humiliation and suffering. After I had GONE WITHOUT MORPHINE for a few hours I readied that extreme point of agony where the chills begin to shake the spinal column to its center. It seemed that a 1 of my body was composed of nerves, each one suffering exquisite torture and calling out incessantly for Its accustomed stimulant. I sneezed until I tbougbt my bead would burst. 1 ran from one end of tbe room to the other. I beat my head and tore out great handsfull of hair, and 1 begged for morphine and opium until my old father plead on his knees for it to give me, saying, "Let her die rather than th Is," and he was taken weeping from my presence, while I lay crouched in one corner, my eyes starting Irom their sockets, waiting for the opportunity to kill myself rather than bear It. Merciful God it kills me to think of it! Cut men in pieces while they live, break them on the wheel, but never cure them ot tbe opium habit by confinement and total abstinenoe. I went into convulsions at laat and then went Into a stato of coma, and, as a little babe, I recovered life once more. Inch by inch. But the nervous shock will never leave me, and I only ovsf all who are not slaves to let opium alono and to take warning from these sad but true confessions of an opium eater. THE BALL "STARTS ROLLING." First Two Week' Success Great Enthusiasm Shown by lliois Interested Success Assured. About two weeks ago In these columns appeared an Item explaining tbe objects, plans and fundamental principles of the "Order of JEglB." The article was beaded "Another Grand Fraud." The object of this beading has practically brought about the desired effect namely (Inquiry). Never before did an advertisement of any order meet with better results. From the fact as shown by the names secured on the charter lists during two weeks, of which nine applicants were examined and their applications forwarded to Lynn, Mass., for approval. Much praise is due Mr. William Hull of the firm of FinleyAHull, clothing. Pine and Broadway, who in his genial and pleasant manner Is doing considerable good for the formation of the fourth lodge here of this order. All others where lifts are placed are similarly interested. This order Is undonbtedly "the best," the safest, "tbe surest" and the most secure of any of the SJl.iiOU In seven years "orders. Based upon fraternity, equality and security, founded upon sound, practical theory. one which has been demonstrated beyond a doubt, anu tne reserve luna (collateral) is held by the Treasurer ot tbe State of Massachusetts, ot which not one dollar can be drawn without tbe signatures of eleven members of the Executive Board. This Is certainly a guarantee to its .members that their certificates will be paid at maturity. It is to your interest, therefore, to unite yourself witb this order and be one among many compoaing the new big lodge and receive iU.Ouo in seven years for about J350 paid iu ; you can't make a better investment. CUT THIS OUT. ,8 j-Catechisms and circulars of the order can be had at the following named places: Wm. A. Stuart, druggist, 1'rl nun's Pharmacy, Fourteenth and Washington avenue. G. W. Dasnman, MacDonaid Bros., hatters and furriers. 217 North Broadway. Fred Lang, drueglst, 1006 Olive street. K. fc. Overatreet Drug Co., 701 Washington avenue. Floiey& Hull, clothing, northwest corner Broadway and fine street. Jno. K. Tuegel. Shaplelgh Hardware Co., 619 North Main street. Woiff & W ilson's pharmacy, Sixth and Wash. Ington avenue. M. lilguey, Rosenthal Carpet Co., 409 North Broadway. J. K. Gordon, office, 105 North Eighth street. Geo. Thles, the batter, 521 Franklin avenue. Kawlings Bros., sporting goods. Eighth and Chestnut streets. After having signed the list you will, at your earliest convenience, go to one or the medical examiners whose names appear below to be examined; you will please pay him three dol-lurs ($3), which pays for your examination and certificate fee. This is all you pay for Initiation until tbe lodge la Instituted, which will be about September 1. you then will be requested to pay the balance, $2.50. Ton will be carried as a member at large until that time. Remember your certificate dates f om the date of examination wben going in as a charter member, so you ebould lose no time. MEDICAL EXAMINERS. Dr. SfcKeage, 13u2 Olive street. Offloe hours, 12 to 2 p. m. Dr. Chancellor, 515 Olive street. Office hours, 12 to 3 and 6 to 7 p m. Dr. Damuitz, 7UG Fine street. Office hours, any time. Dr. Scott, 703 Washington avenue. Office hours, 12 to 3 p. m., at residence. 8313 Morgan treot, from 7 to 9 a. ni. , and at night. Dr. Dickson. 105 North Eighth street, 12 to 1 p. m.. or 16201 Biddie street, until 10 a. m. and from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p. m. J-Ladies wishing to become members of this order may be examined by their own family physician. In such cases they will please notify Secretary J. o. Gordon, 105 North Eighth etreet, who will mail to their ad dress a medical examination blank, after which they can go to be exawlueij; X. B. A prize is offered by the Deputy to the charter member of this lode, who guesses nearest to the number of members this lodge will be instituted with. Every charter member allowed one guess. Guessing coupons can be had from the medical examiners. Guessing contest will close August 15. and remain sealed until the night the lodge is instituted. Tbe successful guesser will be admitted to tbe Order of JijU tree ot charge and. In addition thereto, bis assessments and dnes will be paid for one year irom September 1, is90. Who will be the lucky one? H. Jerralas, Deputy. 1U6 Ji0JlElgUUi, . to too four-in-hand the all public .' a, in in It 1

Clipped from
  1. St. Louis Post-Dispatch,
  2. 06 Jul 1890, Sun,
  3. Page 11

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  • One woman's first-hand account of opioid addiction in 1890

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