Medical Shylocks

The Sydney Morning Herald

20 April 1858

On the morning of Tuesday, the 13th instant, an accident of a serious nature occurred about one mile on this side of Mullengandra.

The mailman was driving along a sideling, when the horses bolted, upsetting the cart, and throwing the driver and a passenger with great violence to the ground.

The passenger was severely bruised, but the mailman remained lying in the road for some time insensible.

Assistance having been procured from Mr. Pankhurst's hotel, the driver was removed thither, and the mail was brought to Albury by Mr. John O'Keefe, who happened to be going to the Tumut with teams.

The precise nature of the injuries sustained by the driver is not known, and we regret to state that the members of the medical profession in Albury refused to ride out to Mullengandra, a distance of twenty miles, unless guaranteed their fees, whilst the agent of the mail contractors declined to incur any liability whatever.

The poor man, therefore, is left to his fate, notwithstanding the fact that the police magistrate offered to give 5 from the benevolent fund, and several private citizens also volunteered contributions towards defraying the expenses of furnishing medical aid to the sufferer.

Of course the money could not be collected instanter, but our medical Shylocks insisted on their pound of flesh before going to see whether the man was alive or dead.