The SA Research Centre has move back to Gepps Cross and for me it is much more convenient. I can drive to it from home and parking is available without cost and I can read the documents they have there from Crystal Brook.
First I was able to find the Institute Minutes of Meetings from 1881. While I didn’t think there would be much about the hospital in these minutes, I did find a bit about Dr. Parkinson. It seems he was a trustee from the inception of the Institute and was elected President in 1882. He served in this role for eight years and his resignation was only accepted because he was returning to England for further study. The committee thanked him ‘for his excellent work over many years’. At the time of his death in 1891, the committee wrote a very heart warming letter to his widow Margaret, expressing their regret at losing such a valuable member of the community.
I also found the minutes of the Crystal Brook Board of Health which I thought might have some useful information. Not one mention of the hospital, but some good stories about some of the doctors. It seems the Board was most concerned with the sanitary conditions of the town and the condition of the piggeries and slaughterhouse.
Finally I read the Council Minutes from about 1880 to 1925 hoping to find some mention of the building. The only mention I could find was that the road leading to Dr. Parkinson’s was in need of clearing.
So two days of reading, and all of these documents were in longhand, didn’t get me much further along the road to finishing this book. So I think the next step would be to go back to Crystal Brook and see if I can find out what information the history group might have found.
My friend has an account with Ancestry.com and she is going to try to find a relative of Dr. Parkinson’s who might just have the good doctor’s diaries and books. So another avenue of research has opened up. This is a very exciting story to research. I will be finished the book by the end of the year so not much more time to wait. Once the writing is all finished and the editing is under way I will be calling for orders so I will have an idea of how many books to get printed. Watch out for that in the near future.