Sunday, March 03, 2013

Sapporo to Boston

Dear Dr. Wight,

How have you been since I left M. G. H.? I have arrived at Yokohama at the beginning of last June and I am now with all my family having happy time. Since I returned to Japan, I have been so busy that I could not write you. I am always thinking of you and others in White 4 Lab. How pleasant my life in M. G. H. was! I am dreaming to come over there once again in future. I do hope you work hard and in future in best health. Please remember me to all members in White 4 Lab.

With all best wishes to you.
Your friend

The sender, Dr. Teruyoshi Hashiba, was a fellow in the neurosurgery department at Massachusetts General Hospital in 1953-1954; from the stamps and partially legible postmark it appears that the postcard was probably mailed in 1954. The recipient may have been Dr. Anne Wight (later Anne Wight Phillips), said to be the first woman to perform surgery at Massachusetts General. Coincidentally, the head of the hospital's neurosurgical service at the time, a man who Dr. Hashiba must also have known, was named White (Dr. James C. White), but it seems unlikely that Dr. Hashiba, who demonstrates a meticulous if slightly unidiomatic command of English, would have confused the names. (The building that housed "White Lab 4" was probably the George R. White Memorial Building, completed in 1939 and named after yet another White, the onetime president of the Potter Drug and Chemical Corporation.)

After he returned to Japan, Dr. Hashiba authored a number of papers in the field of neurology. According to the Department of Neurosurgery at Sapporo Medical University he died on February 2, 1982. Dr. Anne Wight Phillips died in 2009.

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