Quiet-List 1997

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Re: Raising Public Awareness



On Fri, 30 May 1997 10:50:19 -0400 (EDT), 
Sorrento95@aol.com  <Sorrento95@aol.com> wrote:
(in reference to former U.S. Surgeon General William H. Stewart)

>  Does anyone have a specific reference to publications
>  in which this Surgeon General spoke out about noise?
>  How long ago was he Surgeon General?  And where is 
>  he now?  Maybe he could influence the current SG.
>
   I was also curious about Mr. Stewart so did a little checking up on 
him at my local library.  Here's what I found...
   He was Surgeon General under presidents Johnson and Nixon, from 
September 1965 to August 1969.  He was born in Minneapolis, MN in 
May 1921, which would make him about 76 years old now.  He entered
pre-med at the University of Minnesota in 1939, but received his M.D.  
from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge in 1945.  After 
resigning as Surgeon General he returned to L.S.U. to become 
Chancellor of the Medical Center there.  Who's Who in America (U.S.) 
shows him still at L.S.U. as of 1976, but I couldn't find anything
on him after that.  His entry in "Current Biography, 1966" concludes 
with the following:  "A music lover, he plays the piano, favoring the 
classics, and sings bass in the choir of the St. Luke's Episcopal 
Church."  You get that Eric?  Another musician!   
  The New York Times for Friday, June 14, 1968, records that he 
gavegave the keynote speach at a National Conference in Washington, 
D.C. June 13 on "Noise as a Public Health Hazard".  Here is the text 
of the Times article:

PARLEY DISCUSSES HAZARDS OF NOISE

  WASHINGTON, June 13 (UPI) - Needless noise is hurting American's
health, and something <should be done> about it, Dr. William H. 
Stewart, Surgeon General of the Public Health Service, said today.  
  Dr. Stewart keynoted a national conference on noise as a public 
health hazard, the first ever held in this country.  One purpose of 
the two day conference is to examine the effet of "community noise" 
on people generally.  Dr. Stewart called on the conference experts to 
consider not only the occupational hazards of industry but also "the 
world of jackhammers, power mowers, booming hi-fi sets and screeching 
airplanes that we call home."
  Senator Clifford P. Case, Republican of New Jersey, called for a ban 
on supersonic airplane flights until more is known about the damaging 
effects of sonic booms.  Dr. Stewart said that any sudden noise, such 
as sonic booms, could produce "stress phenomena" contributing to 
ulcers, heart ailments, and mental disturbances.
  At a news conference, he said it might be too difficult a job to 
muffle all community noises now afflicting cities.  He said he would 
settle for a freeze of the noise level where it is now.  But he said 
the public was getting fed up with the "public indignity of the 
sound barrage".

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

   As I recall, the shooting of Robert Kennedy had been but a couple 
of weeks earlier which, unfortunately, must have distracted 
considerable attention away from this conference.  However, the New 
York Times Index records a flurry, indeed a blizzard, of interest in 
noise around 1970-71, culminating in the 1972 Quiet Communities Act of 
Congress which, as far as I know, is still in effect.

David Staudacher - quiet@igc.org 
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