Residents of the Lazaretto, 1901

The Lazaretto in Tracadie, New Brunswick was one of two places in Canada where people with the dreaded disease of leprosy were kept in isolation for the rest of their lives. 

In 1900 or 1901, Dr. A.C. Smith began to treat the residents with Chaulmoogra oil. The oil, pressed from the seeds of various species of Hydnocarpus, was a traditional Ayurvedic remedy for skin problems. It had been introduced to western medicine by a British army surgeon stationed in India.

The oil was either injected, which was very painful, or swallowed, which often caused nausea; these effects were so severe that some patients could not stand frequent treatments.


Coalition of Canadian Healthcare Museums and Archives

© 2005, Coalition of Canadian Healthcare Museums and Archives

Teachers' Centre Home Page | Find Learning Resources & Lesson Plans