Iowa History Project


History of Medicine in Iowa
by D.S. Fairchild, M.D., F.A.C.S.
reprinted from The Journal of the Iowa State Medical Society, 1927
transcribed from the original book for the Iowa History Project by S. Ferrall


Isaac Galland
pg 7-10, full text and pg 136, mention
Dr. Isaac Galland with his family settled on the west shore of the Mississippi in 1829 at a point called At-Wip-E-Tuck afterwards known as Nashville. Dr. Galland hoped to build a city here but Keokuk became too strong a competitor. It was here that the first white child was born (in Iowa) Eleanor Galland in 1830 and where the first school was held, taught by Gerryman Jennings. In 1836 Dr. Galland established the second newspaper published in Iowa called the "Western Adventurer". Two years later the paper was sold to James G. Edwards and the name changed to "Madison Patriot". Dr. Galland then moved to Fort Madison. While at Montrose, Dr. Galland wrote a book descriptive of Iowa published in Gue's history of Iowa, Vol. I, page 153:

"As we passed up the river we saw the ruins of old Fort Madison about ten miles above the rapids, near a sand bluff rising perpendicular from the water's edge. On the second day after, our keel boat reached Shoe-o-con or Flint Hills. An Indian village of the Foxes stood at the mouth of the Flint Creek; its chief was Ti-me-a. In 1825 I took a trip with an ox team and an Indian guide up the river. We passed Wapello's village and crossed the Des Moines River on a raft. We ascended the high lands above Grave Yard Bluff (now Buena Vista). We followed the divide, passing a lone tree standing on the bluff, which was a land mark for the Indians. In the fall of 1825 I settled at Quash-qua-me village, where my father-in-law, Captain James White, had purchased the old trading house and a tract of land adjacent, which was an old Spanish grant made to Monsieur Julian, on which he lived in 1805. Captain White made his fist trip to this point on the steamer Mandan, which was the first that came to the foot of the Rapids."

Through the courtesy of Dr. C.F. Wahrer we have been able to secure the following additional history of Dr. Galland:

"Dr. Galland was born in 1790 while his parents were on the way from Virginia to Marietta, Ohio. After he was of age he studied at Fulton County, Illinois, where afterward he began practice. In 1827 he moved to Lee County, Iowa, where he practiced at different times as well as in Hancock County, Illinois, where he lived a while just across the river from Montrose."

"It was said of him that he was a brilliant physician and that he was especially successful in the treatment of cholera which in his day often visited his field of practice, and in the prevention of the epidemic."

"Far and wide over a large field in almost every cabin he placed a chest or box about a foot cubic on which in red letters was printed the legion 'Dr. Isaac Galland's family medicines'.

"The box contained the usual and ordinary remedies ordinarily used by the doctors in those days, but were very helpful when physicians and drugs were scarce. The main time of his services as a physician in and about Montrose and Nashville, now Galland, a few miles below Montrose, was from 1833-39. He did not practice all the time but was employed in many pursuits. Among them was, while he lived across the river in Illinois, his activity as a Mormon Elder, and the Prophet Joseph Smith's private secretary. When Smith lost prestige and his glory waned in Nauvoo, Dr. Galland left the church. He was one of the organizers of the New York company that promoted some land scheme near Nauvoo, also wrote a history of Iowa, made a map of Iowa and in 1840 wrote a book 'The Iowa Emigrant' now almost extinct but for which a large price is paid when it can be obtained.

"He was a patron of schools and under his influence the first school in Lee county was taught, and its teacher, fuel and a room were all provided for by this indefatigable worker.

"He and Dr. Samuel C. Muir of Keokuk were great friends and worked together in all that pertained to their professional interests. The latter died in Keokuk in 1832. Between them they laid out the City of Keokuk and maned most of its principal streets.

"His daughter Eleanor was the first white child born in Lee county.

"In a paper he edited for some time he described the prairies and waters of Iowa, its animals, serpents, birds, plants, the Indians, their lives and habits, and showed himself an able writer and historian.

"Not much is to be obtained of his early medical life. He was much esteemed by his patients as an able man, and enjoyed the confidence of all that came in contact with him. He died in 1858 and was buried in Fort Madison." (pg 7-10)

He was present at the first meeting of Keokuk physicians for the purpose of organizing a medical society in Lee Co., Sept. 1850. (pg 136)

E.J. Gillett
pg 77, mention
E.J. Gillett, M.D., D.D., is listed as professor of chemistry, toxicology, materia medica and microscopy at the College of Physicians of the University of Iowa in Keokuk in 1868.
J.S. Gillett
pg 165, mention
Of Iowa Center, he was lected vice-president of the newly organized Story County Medical Soc. on July 17, 1873.
H.A. Gilman
pg 285, mention
Headed the Insane Hospital at Mount Pleasant until his death in 1898.
H.B. Goff
pg 159, mention
As a member of the Council Bluffs Medical Society in 1871, Dr. H.B. Goff discussed the propriety of the society purchasing a microscope; and in 1872 served on a committee to establish a more friendly relation between physicians and druggists.
Dr. Grafton
pg 165, mention
Dr. Grafton lived in/near Cambridge, Story co. and had left active practice by the early 1870's
Sam Grafton
pg 32-33, full text
The medical history of Linn county began when Dr. Sam Grafton settled at Ivanhoe Bridge about 1840, the exact date is not known, but it is stated that after several years practice he died of typhoid fever in 1847.
J.H. Graham
pg 150, mention
Dr. J.H. Graham of Morning Sun, was elected a censor at the organizational meeting of the Louisa County Medical Society April 24, 1852.
W.W. Grant
pg 156, mention
In 1876 Dr. W.W. Grant was vice-president of the Scott County Medical Society
A.L. Gray
pg 145 & 147, mention
Was a charter member & secretary of the Polk Co. Medical Society.
John Green
pg 164, mention
Member of the Madison County Medical Society when it was organized in 1873.
John Green
pg 163, mention
A special meeting of the Council Bluffs Medical Society was held September 26, 1903, on the occasion of the death of Dr. John Green.
Dr. Grimes
pg 202, mention
Dr. Grimes is mentioned in the bio of A.G. Field - "a physician in Des Moines", no date given, just that he "came later" (after the mid-1860's)
Geo. Grimmel
pg 202, mention
Dr. Geo. Grimmel was noted in the bio of A.G. Field to be practicing medicine in Des Moines in the mid-1860's
H.C. Grimmel
pg 147, mention
Elected a member of the Polk Co. Medical Soc. during the January 30, 1852 meeting.
W.F. Grubb
pg 112, mention
Dr. W.F. Grubb is listed as a member, at the first meeting of the Iowa State Medical Society, May 1850.
John W. Gustine
pg 233-234, full text
Dr. John W. Gustine came to Iowa in 1854 and located in Panora where he continued in the practice of medicine until 1875, when on account of failing health, he removed to Carroll, Iowa, where he had large land holdings, intending to give his time to farm interests; but his reputation and experience as a physician rendered it impossible for him to escape certain demands on his time and strength, until in the fall of 1883, he was obliged on account of a progressive tuberculous affection of the lungs to move to Florida, but returned to Carroll where he died October 7, 1885. Dr. Gustine during a considerable portion of his professional life had struggled against pulmonary tuberculosis from which he finally fell a victim.

Dr. John W. Gustine was born in Juniata county, Pennsylvania, September 16, 1822. His father was a man of high standing in the community in which he lived; at one time was a member of Congress from his district.

Dr. Gustine commenced the study of medicine in the office of Dr. H.C. Wood of Philadelphia and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1848. He located first in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. In 1854 he came to Iowa and located in Panora. He became a member of the Iowa State Medical Society in 1868. In 1871 he was elected treasurer, which position he held until 1877.

Dr. Gustine with a group of active members, notably Drs. Thrall and Williamson of Ottumwa, J.W. Smith of Charles City, A.G. Field of Des Moines, and Wm Watson, assumed in large measure direction of the affairs of the Iowa State Medical Society. There were at that time two medical college factions -- Iowa City and Keokuk -- usually antagonistic, but if one or both assumed to control the Society then the above group made any combination to defeat the schools.

Wm. Gutch
pg 119, mention
Of Blakesburg. Elected a censor at the 18th annual meeting of the Iowa State Medical Society at Des Moines, February 5, 1868.


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