Fiat Flux: The Writings of Wilson R. Bachelor, Nineteenth-Century Country Doctor and Philosopher

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University of Arkansas Press, May 1, 2013 - Philosophy - 306 pages
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Wilson R. Bachelor was a Tennessee native who moved with his family to Franklin County, Arkansas, in 1870. A country doctor and natural philosopher, Bachelor was impelled to chronicle his life from 1870 to 1902, documenting the family's move to Arkansas, their settling a farm in Franklin County, and Bachelor's medical practice. Bachelor was an avid reader with wide-ranging interests in literature, science, nature, politics, and religion, and he became a self-professed freethinker in the 1870s. He was driven by a concept he called "fiat flux," an awareness of the "rapid flight of time" that motivated him to treat the people around him and the world itself as precious and fleeting. He wrote occasional pieces for a local newspaper, bringing his unusually enlightened perspectives to the subjects of women's rights, capital punishment, the role of religion in politics, and the domination of the American political system by economic elite in the 1890s. These essays, along with family letters and the original diary entries, are included here for an uncommon glimpse into the life of a country doctor in nineteenth-century Arkansas.
 

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Contents

INTRODUCTION BY WILLIAM D LINDSEY WILSON R BACHELOR WHYS AND WHEREFORES
3
1 DIARY OF WILSON R BACHELOR 18701902
39
2 OCCASIONAL PIECES FROM THE SCRAPBOOK OF WILSON R BACHELOR 1890S
93
3 LETTERS OF WILSON R BACHELOR 1890S
133
Afterword by Jonathan Wolfe Medicine in the Arkansas River Valley 18651890
139
Appendix I Goodspeed Autobiography of Wilson R Bachelor 1889
151
Appendix II Masonic Eulogy of Wilson R Bachelor 1903
153
Appendix III Report of Wilson R and Sarah Bachelors Golden Wedding Anniversary 1897
155
Appendix IV Letter of Wilson R Bachelor to Zions Ensign 4 February 1893
157
Appendix V Genealogical Charts
159
Notes
163
Works Cited
267
Index
283
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William D. Lindsey is the co-author of Religion and Public Life in the Southern Crossroads: Showdown States.

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