Tuesday, August 29, 2006

More McLean

Apparently, A.J. McLean was as interesting to his contemporaries as he is to us (well, us in HC&A). The disclosure of his will after his premature death in 1938 resulted in what the Oregonian called "nationwide publicity." The Oregonian itself felt the need to publish a full-page spread on February 5, 1939, titled "Story Behind the Strange Will of Dr. McLean." The will read, in part:

"To 95 percent of Portland's medical practitioners and their ethics and the whole local organized medical profession, [I leave] a lusty, rousing belch;
To Portland's thieving patients , the haphazard care they will receive for their chiseling tawdriness;
To my name, oblivion..."

The reporter on the 1939 story felt that he had debunked the rumor of McLean's suicide through his own research and interviews with people who knew McLean. Although McLean may have willed his name to obscurity, the rumors continue to swirl.

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