It was a time when municipal doctors and midwives treated the poor and were paid by councils. Then the society lived with diseases that caused great deaths. People lived with a lack of hygiene and the consequent emergence of epidemics.
It was the beginning of the 20th century, and there were warnings in the papers about “a lack of hygiene in the fountains, in the streets where animals roam freely,” says Luisa Martins. In another newspaper at the time, someone rose up against “the syphilis and the mucus that transmitted the water, and the epidemics occurred.”
Luisa Martins and Joao Saboya are historians from Lule City Council who designed and assembled this gallery. Many hours were spent finding documents, testimonies, and even medical tools that prompted them to tell a story about health in that land in the first half of the 20th century. A story that can also be a picture of the country at that time and can at some point intersect with current events.
When pneumonia emerged around 1916, historians found that at that time the “county manager” was constantly appealing to the police and ranger on horseback to maintain order and force people to stay home. “Until we were surprised by the state of the current pandemic, it was a reality that was too far away for us,” admits Luisa Martins. “As it happened now, everything, schools and markets were closed and there were violent demonstrations due to hunger,” Joao Sivori.
The exhibition also reveals that in the last century there were municipal doctors and midwives paid by councils to treat the poorest. “The poor were really miserable,” the historian asserts.
The exhibition honors three municipal doctors who have excelled in helping residents. It also reveals another social reality, which is a picture of the inequality that existed at the time. At the Hospital da Misricordia in Lule or the Hospital Nossa Senhora dos Pubres, as it was known, only prostitutes with venereal diseases appeared. Records considered forgeries by historians, Joao Saboya says: “In the hospital records, men appeared to have other diseases, which is impossible, and cannot be true.”
In the gallery you can also see a room talking about the big seasons, as malaria was known.
An illness that hit Cartera in particular, a land now known as a tourist center.
In another room you can see the utensils that pharmacists used to design medicines or even remedies and prayers that people use, cultural customs of the time to ward off certain diseases.
“Writer. Analyst. Avid travel maven. Devoted twitter guru. Unapologetic pop culture expert. General zombie enthusiast.”