Page:A cyclopedia of American medical biography vol. 2.djvu/147

This page needs to be proofread.


MacDONALD


127


MacDONALD


he assisted Prof. Detmold in his private classes, and in 1852 went to Dayton, Ohio, and associated himself with Dr. Green.

Promptly in the beginning of the War for the Union he was appointed to the surgeoncy of the Second Ohio Volunteer Infantry. In 1862-1S63 he served as medical director of the right wing of the Army of the Cumberland, and later was detailed to hospital service in Nashville, Tennessee, and Louisville, Kentucky. In the latter place he had charge of the hospital for sick and disabled officers. In the official report of the battle of Murfreesboro, Gen. Rosecrans commend- ed him for gallantry on the battle-field, and for great humanity in the care of the wounded; in recognition of his services he was brevetted Lieutenant-Colonel, U. S. Volunteers. At the close of the war he was assigned as surgeon to Camp Dennison, until appointed surgeon-gen- eral of the state under Governor Hayes.

True to his Uneage, he was full of Irish wit and humor, which bubbled to the surface at the most unexpected times; and this, with the keen observation and information which came from reading and travel, made him a charming companion. He died April 7, 1881.

W. J. C.

Macdonald, Alexander (1784-1859).

Alexander Macdonald was born on the Isle of Skye in 1784 and had his professional education at Edinburgh University where he graduated M. D. in 1805. His early intention had been to enter the army, but having met with an accident — a broken leg — he was advised that he would never be able to endure the hardship of marching. He then turned to medicine in the hope that he might be able to join the army as a surgeon. But this he was not destined to do.

Soon after graduation he was ap- pointed surgeon aboard an emigrant ship bound for Charlestown, Prince Ed- ward Island. The captain was a very brutal fellow who ill-used the Highland


emigrants in every possible way, and was at constant feud with Dr. Mac- donald and Col. Rankin, another cabin passenger, who tried to defend them. The captain made such fiendish threats as to what he would do to Dr. Mac- donald on the return trip, when he would not have the Highlanders and Col. Rankin to help him, that the doctor had no desire to accompany this savage captain on the return voyage.

When Dr. Macdonald came to Amer- ica he had a bill of exchange for 150 pounds, but the conditions of the coun- try were such that he could not get it cashed. At last a man named Ban- nerman, a fellow countryman, told the doctor that he could get it cashed; the bill was handed over to the volun- teer broker and that was the last the doctor ever saw of Bannerman or the money. He was now in a strange land and penniless, and might have been in great distress but for the unstinted kindness he received from the Rev. Alexander Macdonald, of Arisaig, Nova Scotia, whom he had known in Skye.

From Antigonish he went to Jamaica, where he practised for three years. While in Jamaica he had a severe at- tack of fever, in the delirium of which he tore up his diploma. He returned to Antigonish with the intention of going back to Scotland, but fell in love and married Charlotte the eldest daugh- ter of Daniel Harrington, and never re- turned to his native land.

When Dr. Macdonald came to Anti- gonish the roads were mere bridle paths, the bridges were few and poor; when he got into practice he had an immense country to cover; long journeys had frequently to be made, often at night and in the severe storms of win- ter, and the hardships and dangers were terrible. Many stories are told of the doctor's hairbreadth escapes; how once one stormy winter's night when on horseback journeying to visit a patient some fifty miles distant, he and his horse fell over a snow-covered