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Handwritten letter from Carlos Chagas (1923)

Handwritten letter from Carlos Chagas (1923)

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Scientist Carlos Chagas invites President Artur Bernardes to the Rockefeller Foundation banquet and draws attention to the country's health problems.

  • Handwritten letter from Carlos Chagas to Edmundo da Veiga, with the word "urgent" in red.
  • 2 pages.
  • In Portuguese.
  • 16.9 cm x 22.6 cm.
  • February 27, 1923, probably in Rio de Janeiro.
  • Good state.
  • Unique piece.
  • We would like to thank Simone Kropf and Aline Lopes de Lacerda, researchers at Fiocruz, for their kindness in answering our questions.

Extracts

(...) I ask you to kindly inform Mr. President that the banquet for the Head of the Rockefeller Foundation will take place at the Jockey Club.

(...) I will also be very grateful to you for reminding Mr. President of my invitation to visit the Department's general hygiene exhibition, an opportunity for His Excellency to get to know the services of this department up close and to be able to make a good judgment about the country's major health problems, those on which the State's attention should be especially exercised.

Carlos Chagas , director of the then DNSP (National Department of Public Health), talks with Edmundo Veiga, from the Secretariat of the Presidency of the Republic under the government of Artur Bernardes (1922-1926), about inviting the president to a banquet, probably to say goodbye to Lewis Hackett, then head of the Rockefeller Foundation, in the cooperation agreement with the Brazilian government for sanitation actions and combating endemic diseases present in Brazil. Carlos Chagas was also director of the Oswaldo Cruz Institute in the same period. He took the opportunity to invite the president to an exhibition on hygiene organized by the DNSP, which at that time was committed to establishing rural prophylaxis posts in the country, in the context of the health movement.

Carlos Chagas (1879 - 1934), public health doctor, scientist and bacteriologist, is known worldwide for having discovered, in 1909, Trypanosoma cruzi - named in honor of his friend Oswaldo Cruz - the causative agent of Chagas disease. On two occasions, in 1911 and 1920, he was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Medicine.

Letters from Carlos Chagas, one of the few internationally known Brazilian scientists, rarely appear on the market. This piece, handwritten and on the letterhead of the Oswaldo Cruz Institute, presents additional interest, since Chagas, then general director of the National Department of Public Health, financed by the Americans, comments on the worrying health situation in the country.

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