Dear Jacqi, I haven't been able to find out how parish priests were housed in the early 1900s.Fr. Austin A. Cush appears to have had his sisters as housekeepers and/or secretaries in 1900 and 1910.
I found a Daniel E. Reilly in some sort of institution in Chicago in 1900.It could have been a hospital or a monastery.I need to check further.
Priests were trained not to be familiar or casual around women, and not to give much personal information except to those in their families, so I think Agnes would have been a niece, or cousin or very close family friend.It might be that Fr. Reilly grew up in Ohio with Agnes and her sister, and they all lived in Fr. Cush's parish, and then Daniel became a priest and served in Chicago.That's my best guess.
I did find some good information about tuberculosis.Fr. Reilly says he has pleurisy.There is a form of tuberculosis called tuberculosis pleurisy.He talks about being nervous.That is old language for depression (and anxiety), which are common with tuberculosis.He was in Tucson, which had a lot of tuberculosis sanitariums.(Only a small percentage of people were permanently healed at them.) Here are some quotations I found.
A SANITARIUM (health resort) AND A SANITORIUM (TB hospital) The rationale for sanatoria was that before antibiotic treatments existed, a regimen of rest and good nutrition offered the best chance that the sufferer's immune system would "wall off" pockets of pulmonary tuberculosis (TB) infection. In 1863… [a sanitarium’s] patients were exposed to plentiful amounts of high altitude, fresh air, and good nutrition. Tuberculosis sanatoria became common throughout Europe from the late 19th century onwards. Switzerland used to have many sanatoria, as health professionals believed that clean, cold mountain air was the best treatment for lung diseases.
In the early 20th century, tuberculosis sanatoria became common in the United States. In the early 1900s Arizona's sunshine and dry desert air drew many people (called "lungers") suffering from tuberculosis, rheumatism, asthma and various other diseases. Wealthier people chose to recuperate in exclusive TB resorts, while others used their savings to make the journey to Arizona and arrived penniless. TB camps in the desert were formed by pitching tents and building cabins. During the tuberculosis epidemic, cities in Arizona advertised the state as an ideal place for treatment of TB. There were many sanatoriums in the state of Arizona modeled after European away-from-city resorts of the time, boasting courtyards and individual rooms. Each sanatorium was equipped to take care of about 120 people. The greatest area for sanatoriums was in Tucson, with over 12 hotel-style facilities in the city. By 1920, Tucson had 7,000 people who had come for treatment of tuberculosis.
TB SYMPTOMS The classic symptoms are a chronic cough with blood-tinged sputum, fever, night sweats, and weight loss (the last giving rise to the formerly prevalent colloquial term "consumption").
TUBERCULOSIS PLEURISY Extrapulmonary infection sites include the pleura in tuberculosis pleurisy,…
Mood disorders [such as depression] seem to be particularly common in TB patients…. A survey of 100 hospitalized TB patients in South Africa indicated that 68% had some degree of clinical depression: 22 patients were mildly depressed, 38 patients were moderately depressed, and 8 patients were severely depressed.4 These findings seem to indicate that the link between depression and TB is stronger than that between depression and other medical illnesses.