Archived Story

Morris Plumley was an April fooler with names

Published 10:36am Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Morris Plumley madstone was the best known and most sought out in the Dark Corner. Victims of snake or spider bites, or one from a possibly rabid animal, left immediately for Morris’ home to have his madstone applied to the bite area so the poison could be removed.
Many times the madstone would have to remain on the bite area for several hours before all the poison would be drawn out. On several occasions the victim would have to stay overnight. Morris and Ollie treated them like family.
The madstone was utilized less and less after World War II brought about more modern emergency care at a local doctor or area hospital. Morris had no desire to ever go to a hospital. When he developed double pneumonia at home and was told by the doctor that he would not survive without going to the hospital, he refused.
Being one of his grandchildren who was especially close to him, I finally persuaded him to go to the old Spartanburg General Hospital. He agreed, but said, “I won’t never come back home.”
A few days later, during the early morning hours of April 21, 1952, he breathed his last breath there.
I was visiting the expansive Spartanburg Regional Hospital System recently and suddenly discovered that a portion of the old General building, with its beautiful, wide, marble staircases, is still being used.
I was drawn to walk up them, to that fateful fifth floor where I said goodbye 60 years ago.

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