When Mark Twain visited Newcastle, fleetingly, in 1895, he was suffering from a painful tooth.
This dental hospital, operated by the Wells brothers on the corner of King and Bolton Streets, is where he had the offending tooth removed.
He was so pleased with the service he received that he wrote a letter to the dentist, thanking him for allowing him to continue his train journey in more comfort than when he arrived in Newcastle.
Thanks to Murdoch Sucker, of East Maitland, for supplying this wonderful photograph of the Wells Brothers Dental Hospital.
Newcastle University archivist Gionni Di Gravio has made a study of Mark Twain’s Hunter visit, particularly seeking the source of the quote, long attributed to Twain.
He is supposed to have said that Hunter Street was one long street, at one end of which was a graveyard with no bodies in it, and at the other a gentleman’s club with no gentlemen in it.
So far, nobody has been able to locate the source of the tradition.
Last week’s picture from the past brought expressions of disbelief that the date could really have been, as labelled, June 1947. Some thought it could be no later than the early 1930s, while others favoured the 1920s.
Here’s a detail, showing a dozer, locomotive and utility, that might help some vehicle experts pin down the date.