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Washington Post, The (Newspaper) - July 20, 1913, Washington, District Of Columbia i r" THE WASHINGTON POST: SUXDAY, JULY 20, 1913. TELLS STORY OF HER SUFFERING AS WIFE OF THE LEPER, JOHN EARLY MRS. GEORGE TAUSON, Who tells of suffering as the helpmeet of John Early, once quarantined In this city and now confined In a Washington State asylum. Having suffered Jn martyr-like shence the tortures of an outcast -which ware made doubly hard to bear through, the alleged cruelty of the man for whom she assumed her burden, Mrs. George Tausan, the divorced wife of "John RuskJn Early, leper and man of mystery, who has but recently been declared insane, consented several days ago at her home In Tacoma, "Washington, to hare to the world the nightmare life which she led wHh her afflicted husband. Mrs. Early on divorcing the man whom she had married when a girl In her teens married George Tausan, formerly clerk In the office of the treasurer of Pierce county, "Washington. "With her three children she was living happily until a few days ago, when the community was excited by the escape from Diamond Point quarantine station of an Italian, Domtnlck Pittorl, a pronounced leper. Early waa, likewise confined In this sta- tion and the report became current that he had aided Pittorl to gain freedom, and sent him forth to wreak vengeance upon Sis former wife and Tausan. Mrs. Tausan was prostrated" from fright, and guards were placed at her home, when the police were bifofmed that Pittorl had been seen prowling around the premises. It "was when con- fronted with the charge of complicity in Pittori's escape that Early conducted himself In a manner which led to the examination on which. He was pronounced insane. Famous Case in This City. "Washington residents will readily recall the controversy which raged among scientists and physicians a few years ago over Early's case, when he was taken. Into custody In this city and quarantined on the charge of being inoculated with leprosy. He came here In April of 1908 to seek a pension, having served In the Spanish-American war. In August the health authorities pronounced him a lep- er aud he was placfed tinder a guard and compelled to live In Isolation in a house on the banks of the Eastern Branch. Here his wife soon joined him with her children, and for a year the small family, shunned by the public, lived to them- selves. A New Tortc physician interested himself in the case, and, having denied the diagnosis of the malady which had been made by a number of prominent members of his profession, -was permitted to take the unfortunate man to New York city for treatment. Early was carried out of "Washington in a baggage car. After the lapse of about a year toe came to the city, but was again sent away and warned not to return. He later wan- dered through the West, until placed in the quarantine station at Diamond Point. His wife had accompanied him through- out his travels. When he was placed in the quarantine, however, she secured a divorce and remarried. Former Wife Tells of Sufferine. Her recital of her life of suffering, as told to a "Western correspondent, follows: "I lost all affection for John Early the mentflay following our she saM. In veritable purgatory with him. not because he was a leper; we did net know that he was. It was oust his true nature showing forth. I was just a girl 18 years old, I had been reared by an elder brother, -a minister, my father having died when I was a little more than 5 years old. I had been taught to avoid divorce and for that reason I did not seek one at that time." "Were you ever in fear of your life at the hands of your first Mrs. Farly ;was asked. "At Summit I did not average two hours' sleep out of every 04 for the two ninths we remained there. I w-aa a com- plete nervous wreck I JHd not know what moment Early would attempt to me and the babies. "Whea I think of it t.il I nearly go I Iiave trlod to forget U but H seens fatf- keeps it -p Vhy- for nights and nlgnts I hive Ki.n awake in my hoiae at Summit, while my babiea slent next co n-.e, wondering if it ere not a horrible nightmai e. Fights to Save Babies. "Toward the latter part of our stay at Summit, Early became so bad that I was obliged to flght him several times to keep him from beating the babies. "He seemed to detest the oldest child. Mauley, aged 5 Once he struck the boy euch a hard blow on the head that a bunch of hair, the size of an egg, was torn from his head The baby brought the hair to me, and cryingly told me, hit me "When I would interfere with Early he grab me ana hurl me aw xy. One time he barely missed from thro-wing me against a red-hot stove. While at Los Angeles my leper husband became so enraged at me, I do not know -what for, I believe he thought I was planning to leave him, that he clutched niv a-rn and scratched the top of rm 1 vnd and with his finger nailt> until rte- blood spurted out. He stopped TV hen tne eld- est boy Jumped at him showed the top of her right hand "There were white scars an eighth of an Inch wide and fioti three to four Inches in length "The doctor told me I would have '1 scars for life, she continued wita tears coming to her "I teil >ou T didn't have enough I thought, once married, ou must stand all that conies with it" did -you meet and under what Sow leper Wooed Her. I met my first liusband< N" My brothvr TV as corf ui ting A and we went to .Boston, Mass., where we were married November S, 1906. Here my purgatory began. He would not work, and I was obliged to support him. After our flrst baby came Early grew worse, and I took a number of blows from him -while shielding my three- weeks-old child. "During all this time nothing appear- ed to indicate my husband had been in- noculated with leprosy, and I was still unaware of the horrible truth, although I am positive now that Early-Knew he had the disease when he married me." "What makes you so j "He told me and his brother and sis- ter, while all three were together, that he knew he contracted the leprosy while serving In the Philippine Islands. "At Ca-nton, N. C in May, 190S, I no- ticed a sort of rash break out on "his and asked him what it was. He said it was from the effects of acid drop- ped on him while working In a small pulp mill He took me to the mill and show- ed me where the acid had fallen on the floor. I never gave It another thought, believing what I was told. "After a short stay at Canton, Early complained of being homesick, and want- ed to see his mother. We went to Wash- ington, D. C where she lived. Learns Troth in Washington. "It was while in Washington the -tar- rfble truth was learned Early went to see about his pension. He was examined and told he had the leprosy. I cannot describe my terror. Oh' it was some- thing beyond thought. I wanted to flee and yet I wanted to remain for my child's sake. If it had not been mjr children, God knows I Wftuld have left him or killed myself years ago. But my babies! Only a, mother knows how I felt "In 1909 we went to New York and re- mained there until 1910, leaving that place and going to Los Angeles. After a short stay at Los Angeles we came to Summit, under the name of Western. -_ "Although I was convinced beyond a doubt my husband's disease was not an ordinary one, he would not admit to me that he had leprosy. I had read about a famous Dr. Hansen in Norway, and sent several culture cutthigs to him. Dr. Han- son sent an answer months later telling me he had discovered the leprosy germ on the last slide. I showed the letter to Early. He was compelled to admit that he had leprosy. "Although it is generally believed Early lived apart from the rest of his family, such was not the case. His room was directly across the hall, the doors of my room and his facing each other. When would get to drinking, I was so fright- ened I believe I did not realize my true position. If I had I am euro I would have gone mad or ended all. Then, there were my babies. Why She Promised. "While I was losing all my sleep from nervousness, I was losing weight rapidly, and, was about to break down completely, when my husband was taken away by the authorities. I promised to go with him. I do not deny that I would have prom- ised anything to get him away. If I had not promised to settle on a ranch near the Diamond Point colony I was afraid he would refuse to go. His refusal to leave meant my death and the death of my babies also Knowing that, I gave him my promise, but which I know will not be held against me. "I have never spoken of my troubles before, but when every one begins' to criticise me for leaving him, I had to ex- plain. "Early was a bright man, but he "Would not use his brains. While I was In New- York with him he refused to take a job that paid about a night, but would sit around the lamp in our rooms read- ing law, while I worked and drudged over a sewing machine "When the charity fund was collected in Tacoma for the benefit of myself and babies I was so incensed that 1 tele- phoned to have it stopped. I was in- formed it was too late. I am thankful now, however, as the funds obtained by the Spanish war veterans of Tacoma saw me through a long illness at a local hospital "The reports sent out yesterday thai my husband la insane, having lost his mind over the new's of my divorce, are untrue. Early was sent a copy of the decree and was informed in a personal visit by an attorney. At that time he did not complain, but said I was doing what was right. "During his confinement at Diamond Head Early has sent me little money, W e e commumcated regularly, and I have sent him numerous pictures of the I received several
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