Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Dempster, James Carroll (1854-1857)


d. February 25, 1881. MD (Glas.) 1840. Army staff surgeon. Hong Kong with his unit nlt.1854. Seconded to Hong Kong Government, Colonial Surgeon (vice William Morrison, deceased) May 1, 1854-57; received an extra salary of £200, p.a., in addition to Army pay; introduced the treadwheel to prison in Hong Kong 1854 [1]. Left Hong Kong for India with his unit 1857; Hazara, India 1857; Sebastopol, Crimea; Ferozepore, India 1859; New Zealand 1863-65; Deputy-Inspector-General; final rank Deputy-Surgeon-General

[1] Dempster was more keen in punishing than healing with respect to his responsibility in the Goal, so much so that he introduced the treadwheel to the prison in Hong Kong as a punishment in 1854. The treadwheel was purchased in England at the cost of GBP188; it remained in use until ca.1861. Treadwheel, nicknamed "everlasting staircase" was a punishment device invented by British engineer William Cubitt.

 The actual plan of the treadwheel introduced by Demster, 1851.

Selected bibliography: The Hong Kong Government Gazette, May 6, 1854.


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