Dr. Cartwright, of New Orleans, amuses himself with the anatomical dissection of alligators, his object being, as he alleges, the demonstration of certain new physiological views that he entertains. On a recent occasion he cut up three of these monsters in the presence of a large number of scientific gentlemen, with the following results, according to the New Orleans papers:—" He divided the spinal marrow in three places—at the base of the neck, in the middle, and at the base of the back ; nay, he divided the nerves emerging from the spine—and still, on irritating the nerve between the section and the extremity, he demonstrated the animal possessed a diffused sensibility, a capacity to recognize pain, and even an intelligent power to act against or attempt to escape the cause of the pain.— Cutting off the head of the animal, jobbing out the spinal marrow, dividing the nerves coming from them, and irritating them along their distal portions, they still retained this independent sensibility, and the mutilated limbs of the headless animal would make intelligent motions for getting rid of the local torture. These are curious and curious discoveries. Dr. Cartwright contends, against long odds, it is true, that in the lungs, not the heart, resides the motive power of the circulation ; that literally, as Moses asserted, the blood is the life of the flesh, and the air the lite ot the blood. He affirms that after death, when the pulse has stopped, the heart is still, and the body is insensible to pain ; by producing artificial respiration, by inflating the lungs, the blood can be started anew, its life revived, and the body resuirected absolutely from the cold abstractions of death. Both of his alligators had their windpipes tied, and one of them had his chsst opened, with his heart, lungs, stomach, & c, exposed. In the course of two hours both animals were dead, pulseless, and quiet over flames of fire. Then, a bellows-being inserted into the trachea, inflation was begun, and continued for some minutes. We saw the motionless heart throb, the blood beginning to flow from the lungs to that organ —the eyes of the alligator opened, and the hapless " victim " lived again! The alligator whose chest was exposed, had his carotid artery accidentally cut, thereby losing a considerable quantity of blood, and hence it was not made so briskly alive as the other, who retained all its vital fluid." [The above reads very much like a " great fish story.”
This article was originally published with the title "A Huge Anatomical Demonstration"