Cone, Dr H E 1998-07-16

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Dr. H. E. Cone recalls his career as a general practitioner in Silver City, New Mexico, and in Lubbock.

General Interview Information

Interviewee Name: Dr. H. E. Cone

Additional Parties Recorded:

Date: July 16, 1998

Location: Lubbock, Texas

Interviewer: Lori Lawson

Length: 2 hours, 20 minutes


Tape 1, Side 1: Cone, H. E., background, b: October, 1909, Cameron County, Texas, Eighth of 10 children, Father, Died when H. E. Cone only 10 years old, Visited West Texas (Lubbock) in 1909, Bought land near Slaton, Texas, Fence materials brought in from Canyon, Big Spring, or San Angelo, Texas, Anecdote about wild mules, Return to Cameron County, Brought family to West Texas, 1913, by train, Fear of conductor, black man, Dr. Overton and Dr. Wagner doctors for ailing father, Mother attained loan from First National Bank, Mr. Post, Checkbook to cover expenses, Father, Died, 1914 of stomach cancer, Prevalent at that time, Farmer/sheriff, Marriage, Children born, Flu epidemic, 1918, Mother and two sisters in hospital, Lubbock, Lubbock Inn used as hospital, Drs. M. C. Overton and Wagner, main doctors, Snowstorm, Took train to Monroe, Texas (5 miles northeast of Lubbock), Rode horses home, Dr. M. C. Overton, Second marriage, Excitement, Attended Liberty school (5 miles northeast of Lubbock), formerly Dome and Badger Lake, Black cloud caused early dismissal, 1920, Running home to avoid hailstorm, Lubbock High School, Drove Model T to school, 5 flats in one day, Graduated, 1927, Attended University of Texas, Delivering papers, Job in chemistry lab, Chemists taught him chemistry, Supported mother and younger sisters in Great Depression, Accepted to medical school, Problems with grades, Visit to Dean Potter, Delivering papers (again), Flunking physics exam, Making it up, Asked to be physics assistant, Zoology professor asks to buy his chart of circulatory/nervous system, 1931, mothers and sisters return to Lubbock, Farming better, Good income in Depression, 1927-1934, Plans for career, Chemistry lab job led him to go into medicine, Mother against him becoming a farmer, Medical school, Dallas, Texas, Good background from University of Texas, Lab work in chemistry and zoology, Helping female student, Histology question, Disrupted class, Mother's gall bladder surgery, Missed surgical anatomy class, Disrupted class when he returned, Selected to work at Dallas Surgical/Medical clinic, Histories and physicals on patients, Christian Science patient, Treating after putting her to sleep, Christian Scientist with broken leg, Surgical/Medical clinic (again), Good direction and guidance from doctors, Eye doctor treating patient

Tape 1, Side 2: Cone, H. E. (continued), Work at Surgical/Medical clinic (continued), Eye doctor's diagnosis, Glaucoma case, Making the rounds, Diagnosing kidney stones, Questioning senior doctor, Patient's history, Parkland Hospital, Tuberculosis hospital, Dallas, Texas, Fluid in lungs, Tuberculosis, background, More cases now, Parkland Hospital (again), Boy with fluid around heart, Removing fluid, Other doctors didn't know how to treat, Neighbor's son with similar problem, Doctors in Denver not knowledgeable on procedure, Child with lobar pneumonia, Resident wanted to remove fluid, Radiologist questioned, Difference between lobar pneumonia and fluid around heart, Venereal disease clinics, 1200-2000 treated monthly, No penicillin, Sulfa drugs used, Mercury used, Infections cause 1/2 of deaths, Antibiotics stopped these, Penicillin and others, Beaumont Hospital, El Paso, Texas, during World War II, First admitted as a patient, Helped with physicals and histories, Gastroanalysis, Treating, Efforts to diagnose, Blood chemistry, Bacteriological laboratory work, Diagnosing 27 soldiers, Thought to be infected with syphilis, Actually trench mouth, Deal made with major, Soldiers unable to get off duty, Treated with circumcision, Practice in Silver City, New Mexico, Girl with broken leg, Demanded to have a real doctor, Helped deliver a baby near Gila River, Became his wife, Tonsil removals, Delivered 15 babies per month for 15 years, Polio treatments, Treated with blood transfusions from those previously infected, Nephew, Flew to Midland to treat, Gave transfusion in hotel, Improved condition, Vaccine available, ca. 1950, Not cost prohibitive, President F. D. Roosevelt influenced research

Tape 2, Side 1: Cone, H. E. (continued), Silver City practice (continued), Polio treatment (continued), Not cost prohibitive (again), Protease inhibitors for HIV, Cost prohibitive, Treatment possibilities, Similarities of TB, polio, syphilis, Gave transfusions for all infections, His own blood, Hemophilia, Treated by replacing blood, Children recover after 16 years of age, Example of 2 boys, Mother with polysithemia, Draining off blood, Airplane, Bought, 1948, Flew over mountains, deer and antelope, Learning to fly, Unsuitable places to land, Risky takeoffs, Taylorcraft, Gila Wilderness, landing in high grass, Moving boulders for takeoff, Deer hunting, Other hunters who climbed mountain, Brother tore-up plane, Dropped supplies to stranded rangers in snowstorm, Flew to clinic in isolated town, Ca. 1940s, Satellite clinic at smelter, ca. 1963, Computerization, Indigent care, Most received care courtesy of himself and others, Town drunk treated for blood clot, Removed from brain, Borrowed saws from meat market, Horse surgery, Repaired foot tendons, Soldiers in wreck, Military service, Family practitioner, Patient and helped out at Beaumont Hospital, El Paso (again), Joined Army 9 - '42, discharged, 11- '44, Attempted to get in Air Force, Failed physical because of allergies, Drafted as a private, Attempted to get leave first weekend, On leave treated soldiers in wreck (again), Assignment to 'suicide squad', They left without him, Move to Lubbock, Texas, August, 1957, Overworked in Silver City, Not affiliated with a hospital, Unable to get on staff, Patients not admitted to hospital by him, On staff later at hospitals, Retired, 1979, Texas Tech Medical School, Local doctors opposition, Dr. Buesseler, John offended with his military demeanor, Doctors 'ignorant', Selfish and narrow-minded, Threatened business, Treating patient without a vagina, Wanted to get pregnant

Tape 2, Side 2: Cone, H. E. (continued), Lubbock, Texas, practice (continued), Patient attempting to get pregnant (continued), Physical problem described, Woman with meningitis, Cause of pain, Spinal cord fluid, Traditional treatment, Treated with cortisone and penicillin, Improved condition, Wife, Maria Burger, from Silver City, New Mexico, Champion at typing and short hand, Baby clinic set up by Second Baptist Church, Started by Dr. Gerald L. Marable and Dr. William Ullom, Indigent migrants, Children dying of diarrhea, infections and malnourishment, Only place could get treated, Views on Medicare/Medicaid, Worried about centralization, Alternatives, During Depression everyone helped everyone else, Best system, Baby clinic (again), Served 32 years, Church funded, Volunteerism, Medicine and milk donated, Nurses clinic, Lubbock tornado, In Caribbean at the time, Learned about deaths and devastation from customs agent, Brother's experience, Insane asylum, Austin, Texas, Worked there during medical school, Experiments done on inmates, Malfunctioning equipment, Cured patient, Operation on lady with cancerous lesion on finger, Took off entire hand, Learning to stick veins, Lubbock as a medical center, Doctors and facilities, Changes in education, Used to be more practical sense, Doctor/patient relations, Now patient seen as way to make money, Greed, Doctors' attitudes, Effect of Medicare, Technological changes, Antibiotics most significant, Abuse of new technology, Fear of litigation, Unable to diagnose without it, Advise for new doctors, Grandson starting medical school, Two sons are doctors, Influence he had on nephew, Became a brain surgeon

Tape 3, Side 1: Cone, H. E. (continued), Granddaughter's plans (Melissa), Scholarship, Views on women in medicine, More compassionate, Might improve relations with patients, Memories of segregation, Important physicians, Dr. Hutchinson, J. T., domineering, Dr. English, O. W., congenial, Dr. Chatman, J. A., Advances in laboratory sciences, Too much borderline use and experimentation, CAT scans, EKG, Changes in nursing services, Almost destroyed by making them clerks, Paperwork requirements, Nurses aids to patient care, Third world nurses in U. S., Prostate cancer, Important to find when localized, Personal experience, Preferred medical treatment to surgery, Now under control, Surgery causes complications, Baby clinic (again), Diarrhea, Hyperkinetic child, Excessive tension, Destructiveness, Used Ridlin to treat, Recovery and success in later life, View of patient diagnosis, Son's opinion of him, Dyslexia treatments, Treating 18-year-old, Dealt with his attitude

Tape 3, Side 2: Blank

Range Dates: 1909-1997

Bulk Dates: 1940s-1950s

Access Information

Original Recording Format: audio cassette

Recording Format Notes: digitized; CD copy available to listen in reading room


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