Edward Augustus LERMITTE

Kingscote and the Doctor.

Kingscote, one of the most peaceful towns in the State; has recently been shaken to its very foundations. The doctor, usually one of the most important citizens in any community, is specially so at Kingscote. On the mainland it is different—one has only to get into his car, and an hour or so brings him to the city, where he has the choice of many "medicos." There was a difference of opinion between the council and the doctor, and although the trouble had a very small beginning, it soon assumed great dimensions. The community arranged themselves into two quite hostile camps, and practically no other topic was discussed but the doctor and the council. All the retiring councillors were threatened with defeat. When, however, the fever was at its height, some ice water in the form of reason was applied, and the trouble subsided as quickly as it started. All ended well; the retiring councillors were re-elected, and the doctor re-established supreme. ...

Observer (Adelaide, SA : 1905 - 1931), Saturday 11 August 1928, page 55
Kangaroo Island Courier (Kingscote, SA : 1907 - 1951), Saturday 3 December 1927, page 3

"... Cr. Burgess moved that Clerk reply to Dr. Lermitte intimating that unless he can accept the terms submitted in the Clerk's letter dated the 19th instant on or before the 17th December next, the Council feel that they have no option but to terminate the agreement with him under which he receives a subsidy of £250 per annum as Resident Medioal Officer at Kingscote as from three months from this date. Seconded by Cr. Bell. Moved by Cr. Carter as an amendment that the Council, having no jurisdiction over the fees charged by the doctor, take no further action until they receive a requisition from the ratepayers desiring the termination of the agreement. Seoonded by Cr. Cook. Proposition declared carried."

This action by the council resulted in a public meeting 5 months later:

Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954), Saturday 19 May 1928, page 19

KINGSCOTE (K.I.). May 14 1928. — At the request of a number of ratepayers, the chairman of the district council (Mr. R. Wheaton) convened a meeting to discuss the action of the council in terminating the agreement of Dr. Lermitte as medical officer of this district. The meeting was held in the district hall on May 12, when ratepayers and residents from all parts of the district were present. The Chairman read all the correspondence between the doctor and the council, after which it was proposed that Mr. J. Dewar should take the chair, and as an amendment it was moved that the chairman of the council preside. The amendment was carried.

Several speakers then spoke in favor of the council's action, while others were in favor of retaining the service of Dr. Lermitte. At times it was impossible to hear what the speakers were saying, owing to constant interruptions. Questions of all kinds were asked, some relevant to the issue, and others quite the reverse.

Mr. G. Turner, sen., moved that the ratepayers had confidence in the council. This was seconded by Mr. G. Bell. Mr. R.W. Chapman moved that the council should retain the services of Dr. Lermitte. After a lot of discussion, the chairman put Mr. Chapman's motion, after ordering only rate payers to remain in the hall and vote, the chairman selecting a resident to count the votes, each party taking one side of the hall. The result was a small majority in favor of retaining the services of Dr. Lermitte. Then ensued more arguments whether Mr. Turner's motion should be put, some arguing that they had nothing against the councillors, except on the one question. The chairman eventually succeeded in putting Mr. Turner's motion, but those who voted for the previous motion refrained from voting. Some of those present started singing 'For he's a jolly good fellow,' and "God Save the King." The meeting then broke up in disorder.

AMERICAN RIVER. (1928, May 19). Chronicle (Adelaide, SA : 1895 - 1954), p. 19. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article90415641

Census 1913


Parents committed suicide using morphine

See THE LATE DR. LERMITTE. (1902, October 25). Adelaide Observer (SA : 1843 - 1904), p. 31. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article161788043 On Oct. 17 a Coroner's jury arrived at the conclusion, that Dr. C. G. Lermitte, the well-known practitioner of Adelaide, had committed suicide by taking prussic acid while temporarily insane.

See THE LATE MRS. LERMITTE. (1904, June 4). Adelaide Observer (SA : 1843 - 1904), p. 34. http://nla.gov.au/nla.news-article163048302 "... The Coroner, in charging the jury, said that some one was undoubtedly to blame for allowing such a quantity of morphia to get into one person's hands."