Charles RD Brothers' letter to John Cade on June 18, 1950
E-mail exchange in July 2017 between Jack Cade, Greg de Moore and Sam Gershon


Gregory de Moore and Ann Westmore, Finding Sanity: John Cade Lithium, and the Taming of Bipolar Disorder. Reviewed by Barry Blackwell


From Jack Cade to Greg de Moore



            I found this interesting letter over the weekend. My father had been using as a bookmark in his favourite mathematics book (Hogben's "Mathematics for the Million").

            Charles Brothers was a distinguished psychiatrist, at the time the Director of Mental Hygiene in Tasmania. He later came to work in Melbourne.

            It seems that the clinical results of lithium in manic patients in Tasmania had been impressing the medical officers there in 1950 & they wanted to source some more reliable supplies.



From Greg de Moore to Sam Gershon


Hi Sam, 


            I thought you and the crew might like this letter. Please see attached item. 

            I received (see below) a note from one of John Cade's sons about this letter. As you can read the letter is from a Tasmanian psychiatrist who was trying to access lithium in 1950. In our biography of John Cade we came across another letter from Sydney asking John the same thing ... where did he get his lithium!? This, to me, is still a bit of a mystery. I am sure you will know of Dr Brothers. 

            Actually as I read the letter again, I can see that John Cade has given us the answer. In pencil you can read what I think must be the companies from which he accessed lithium? I've just googled them ... and yes, they were/are all drug companies. Mystery I think solved!







Sam Gershon’s reply to Greg de Moore


            Yes, I knew Dr, Brothers when he joined the mental Hygiene Authority in Victoria as a bureaucrat. I would just like to add an explanatory note to these comments. Dr, Margulies, an immigrant physician, working at Lachan Park hospital in Tasmania, produced the only publication on Lithium treatment from Tasmania in the Med J Australia in 1955. He ,himself had been in direct contact with Dr Trautner before initiating his trial and remained in contact on his progress.





November 2, 2017