This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
We ask the especial attention of readers interested in the subject, to the following remarks, by one of the most distinguished physicians in the country, on the sanitary effects of green-houses. At a moderate cost, many a family might enjoy the delightful bloom and fragrance of exotics in winter, with the satisfaction of providing for an invalid member of that family, the soothing influences of the air of Madeira or Cuba. In a public point of view the matter is even more important - as Dr. S. truly suggests. Ed.
Dear Sir: Having for many years suffered from a pulmonary complaint, I am led to avail myself of your Journal, to offer some observations on a subject lying mid-way between our respective callings. Some ten or twelve years since, in visiting the green-house of Mr. Niblo, then my neighbor in Broadway, during the winter, I found the atmosphere whenever it has been convenient, I have passed the hours of reading and study. The climate of a cold green-house, in a sunny day of the winter or spring, is a Florida climate, and is entirely different from that of an artificially heated atmosphere. I venture to recommend it under most circumstances, to pulmonary invalids, in preference to the more expensive plan of removal to the South, involving, as it does, much discomfiture, interruption of business, hazardous exposure, and entire separation from friends.
While on this subject, I am induced to speak of the importance of glass structures for convalescents in hospitals. The New York Hospital has already been, and the Ward's Island Hospital will soon be provided with such structures, of which the importance can scarcely be over-estimated. Who that has noticed the instinctive desire of man and animals, to bask in the sun, will fail to appreciate the advantage of providing the means of such enjoyment for those who are able to leave a sick room.
And now, sir, I leave the matter in your hands. What men of wealth may do for themselves, and what the public may do for its charities, the public should do for the middling classes and the poor. They should establish winter gardens in all our great cities.
I am, etc. A. H. Stevens.
Astoria, Long-Island, July 17, 1851.