HEALTH, MUNICIPAL BOARDS OF. Institutions organized tinder city government. and deriving powers from state laws for the purpose of protecting the health of the citi zens. The present hoard of health of the city of New York is a municipal board. From 1806 to 1870 there was a united health department of the cities of New York and Brook lyn, tinder the title of metropolitan board of health (see HEALTH, METROPOLITAN BOARD OF—NEwYonx). Chapter 137 of the laws of New York, passed April 5, 1S70, provides that the city of New York be exempted from the provisions of the act which created the metropolitan board of health, and also created a health department., to consist of the police commissionoted of the •city of NeW York, the health officer of the port, and also four officers, to be called "commissioners of health of the city of New York," to be appointed by the mayor for a term of five years—two of whom must have been prac ticing physicians in the city for a period of five years preceding their appointment. In 1873 an act to reorganize the local government of the city of New York made the fol lowing provisions: "The health department shall consist of the president of the board of police, the health officer of the port, and two officers to be called ' commissioners of health,' one of whom shall have been a practicing physician for not less than five years preceding his appointment. The commissioner of health who is not a physician shall be president of the board, and shall be so designated in his appointment. These several officers shall together constitute a board which shall be the head of the health department. The commissioners of health, except those first appointed, shall hold their offices for six years." The act also created two bureaus, the chief officer of one to be called the " sani tary superintendent, who at the time of his appointment shall have been for at least ten years a practicing physician, and for three years a resident of the city of New York, and who shall be the chief executive officer of said department. The chief officer of the second bureau shall be called the register of records, and in said bureau shall be recorded, with out fees, every birth, marriage and death, and all inquisitions of coroners which shall occur or be taken within the city of New York." By an amendment to this act, the powers conferred on the metropolitan board of health by the laws of 1866, or any sub sequent laws not inconsistent with this act, are conferred upon and vested in the health department and board of health created in its place. The health department, as organ ized under the act, consisted of the board of health, composed of the four officers above mentioned, viz., the commissioners of health, the health officer of the port, and the presi dent of the board of police, together with a secretary, and the following " officers of the board:" a sanitary superintendent, a register of records, an attorney and counsel, a chief clerk, a consulting sanitary engineer, a consulting pathologist, a consulting meteorologist, a consulting microscopist, a consulting veterinary surgeon, a consulting sanitary archi tect, nine sanitary inspectors (all of whom were physicians), sixteen assistant sanitary, twelve of whom were physicians. The secretary's department consisted of the secre
tary of the board, a chief clerk, an auditing clerk, and chief clerk to the secretary, and four other clerks. The attorney's department consisted of the attorney and counsel of the board, and three clerks. The bureau of sanitary inspection consisted of the sani tary superintendent, an assistant sanitary superintendent, a chief clerk to the superin tendent, four other clerks, a chief of disinfecting corps, and eight other members of the disinfecting corps. The bureau of vital statistics consisted of the register of records, a deputy register of records, and eleven clerks. By chapter 677, laws of 1872, and by chapter 335, laws of 1873, " the board of police has full and exclusive power and authority, and is charged with the duty of causing all streets, avenues, lanes, alleys, gutters, wharves, piers, and heads of slips to be thoroughly cleaned from time to time, and to be kept at all times thoroughly clean." Every city of importance in the United Slates has a municipal board of health. A good example is that of the health department of the city of Boston. At the present time, 1881, the board consists of three citizens, one of whom is a physician, and six "officers of the board," viz.: 1. A superintendent of health, who is not a physician; 2. a city physician; 3. an assistant city physician; 4. a port physician, and 5. a medical inspector. The seventh annual report of the board of health of Boston for the year end ing April 30, 1879, is a model of brevity and conciseness. In regard to street cleaning it says: " The faithfulness and zeal with which the superintendent of health endeavors to keep the streets properly swept and free of nuisances is commendable in the highest degree. As a rule, the streets are in a cleanly condition, and a source of pride rather than a source of offense." The health department of New Haven, Conu., consists of six citizens, one of whom is a physician, a health officer, who is a physician. a quaran tine officer, who is a physician, a standing committee of two, one of whom is a physi cian, and two sanitary inspectors. The report of the health officer for the year 1879 furnishes strong evidence that privy vaults and cesspools are the most frequent genera tors of typhoid fever and diphtheria to a great extent, because of the prevalent habit of having wells for drinking water in near proximity to them.