Correspondence of Theophilus Waldmeier, relating to the foundation and administration of the Lebanon Hospital for the Insane

Scope and Content

Waldmeier's correspondence gives a detailed insight into the foundation, development and administration of the Hospital in its early years. It includes correspondence with the London General Committee and the Hospital's Treasurer, and progress reports written by Waldmeier in order to keep donors and subscribers to the Hospital informed. Correspondence discusses issues such as building work, installation of equipment, admission of patients and their social background, treatment and recovery rates, fundraising efforts and financial matters, and the day-to-day administration of the Hospital. Also includes press cuttings and obituaries on Waldmeier, following his death in 1915.

Administrative / Biographical History

Theophilus Waldmeier was born in 1832, at Basle, Switzerland. After passing through the missionary college of St. Crischona, near Basle, he went to Abyssinia in 1858 to take up missionary work that had been begun by Dr. Gobat, then Bishop of Jerusalem. Waldmeier left Abyssinina in 1868, and went to Syria, where he settled for a time at Beirut (Beyrout) in connection with the British Syrian Mission founded by Mrs Bowen Thompson in 1860. In 1873, Waldmeier started the Friends' Syrian Mission at Brumana (Brummana), where he also worked as superintendent. He relinquished this position in 1896, in order to promote his plan of providing a home for the insane. He travelled extensively in order to make a more extended appeal for funds, raising about £4,500. He returned to Beirut in 1898, and purchased the site at Asfuriyeh. Waldmeier became Business Superintendent at the Lebanon Hospital, retiring in 1915. He died on 10 March 1915.


Correspondence has been arranged in chronological order.

Access Information