The frontier. (O'Neill City, Holt County, Neb.) 1880-1965, September 25, 1952, St. Anthony's Hospital Magazine Supplement, Image 13

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    Dean’s Reminiscing
Tday Is Pardonable
Dr. Douglas Counts
2,400 Births
Dean among medical men of
this area on this hosoital - con
scious day is Dr. William James
Douglas, 79-year-old physician
from Atkinson, who has complet
Doctor Douglas . . . once per
formed appendectomy on a
kitchen table.
ed more than 51 years of prac
tice in that community.
More than one of the 2,40'0 ba
bies he has helped bring into the
world will be present at the
dedication ceremonies of St.
Doctor Douglas would be
pardoned if he would take this
occasion to reminisce at length,
to turn back the pages and re
trace pioneer trails in Holt
county which he traveled with
his little black bag of healing.
Doctor Douglas was born in
Pekin, Md., and came to Nebras
ka with his parents in 1878. He
graduated a doctor of medicine
from the Omaha medical college
in 1900, and after brief practice
at Clarkson, Dodge, Benedict and
Tilden, he moved to Atkinson
where he has been since that
time closely and intimate] v
identified with that community’s
His experiences have been
those of a typical frontier doc
tor, whose only hospital was his
patient’s bed and his only ad
vantage a courageous spirit.
At one time he maintained a
stable of 17 horses to get him
.over the country, and with the
advent of the automobile he
was the proud owner of an early
Hupmobile, a dubious honor,
since often when low on gas he
was stranded in an area where
only a few communities “stock
ed” gasoline.
Some of Ihe drama in the
career of this country doctor
might easily fill a book.
As, for instance, the time he
was called to a farm to attend a.
boy who obviously required an
appendectomy. The parents re
fused at first, so diplomatically
the doctor packed his grip, and
with a flourish started to town.
“The parents came after me,”
he recalls, “and I operated on the
kitchen table with the hired man
administering the anesthetic.”
The operation was successful.
This was one of the first appen
dectomies performed in the state
of Nebraska.
It is also remarkable in the
life of Doctor Douglas that in
the more than 2,400 deliveries
he has assisted, not one confine
ment case has been fatal' to the
Doctor Douglas married Anna
May Campbell on June 17, 1904.
They became the parents of a
daughter, Mrs. David (Catherine
Delores) Adler, who is now liv
ing in Winnetka, 111.
Mrs. Douglas has been dead
for many years.
During World War I, Doctor
Douglas served as a captain in
the medical corps and was dis
trict American Legion command
er in 1933-’34.
He has been a lifelong repub
lican, is a member of the Cath
olic church, Knights of Colum
bus and American Medical asso
Last year, Doctor Douglas was
honored with nine other Nebras
ka physicians and surgeons for
having completed more than
a half-century in the practice of
OC /fHNOri
4*C»f« tAi»r
Paul F Wagner .
t ' executive off ice
September 12, 1952
•< , .... : 'if••
Mr. James M. Corkle, Chairman
St. Anthony’s Hospital Building Association
O’Neill, Nebraska
Dear Mr. Corkle:
I am very pleased to extend my sincere congratula
tions to you, your committee, and the civic-minded
people of the O'Neill territory upon the dedication
of the beautiful new St* Anthony's Hospital at
O'Neill* I am always proud of Nebraskans who are
able to analyze their needs and then take action
to help themselves*
This community hospital will be of great benefit
to your area and will be\a great factor in allevi
ating suffering and savirig lives. I wish you every
success in its operation*!
Sincere I
l U :
( right's Red & White i
| STORE ||
H We respectfully welcome §
St. Anthony’s Hospital to our
community . . . and we regard «
the entire project as something
very worthwhile and exceedingly
I j well done. |
★ |
measure, great or small, has helped
: to make (possible ST. ANTHONY’S
|| HOSPITAL we tender our warmest con
H erratulations. The story behind ST. AN
| THONY’S HOSPITAL is indeed a bril
Iliant chapter in North Nebraska history.
_ / v-iv ....