Page:A cyclopedia of American medical biography vol. 2.djvu/262

This page needs to be proofread.




for the first time brought the medal ruhng style of engraving to bear on fossil specimens.

Gov. Powell, of Kentucky, selected Owen as state geologist in 1854, and the results of his survey occupied four large volumes, with maps and illustrations. Duties came thronging fast, for the Kentucky siirvey was not completed before Owen was made state geologist for Arkansas, but the second volume for this expedition was not quite finished when he died, though he dictated up to three days of his death. The offer, a second time made, of state geologist for Indiana, had been taken on condition that the work should be carried through by his brother Richard, who had then, because of the war crisis, resigned his professorship of natural science at Nashville, Tennes- see. The volume had 368 pages with wood cuts and diagrams by Richard and the last proofs were read by him in camp when he was serving in the Fifteenth Indiana Volunteers.

Great and indefatigable perseverance marked Owen's life work. Although he found that the Arkansas summer surveys, often made in the rich malarial bottoms, injured his health and brought him home in the autumn with a hue denoting strong malarial derangement, he not only con- tinued the surveys but continued his laboratory winter work far into the night. But the unrelaxed strain and attacks of cardiac rheumatism terminated his career on November 13, 1860. His wife, two sons and two daughters sxirvived him.

His work as an artist deserves some mention, for, besides leaving some good paintings in oil of his family he richly illustrated his reports. He also sent to London on canvas in distemper, views of the fossil sigillaria found erect in situ twelve miles from New Harmony. These were presented by Sir Roderick Murchi- son at a meeting of the British Associa- tion for the Advancement of Science. Owen subsequently took Sir Charles

Lyell to the locality. He was always eager to share his scientific pleasures and built at his own cost (some $10,000) a laboratory fully equipped in every respect, so fine also architecturally that he furnished the design for the Smithson- ian buildings and carefully tested the various specimens of stone submitted.

Tlie Am. Geologist, Aug., 1889 (port.). Tlie History of Am. Geol. G. P. Merrill,

190G (port.).

Owen, William Otway (1820-1892).

He was the son of Dr. William Owen, a skillful surgeon and obstetrician of Lynchburg, and born in that city, October 20, 1820. He began Ufe as a civil engineer, but yielding to the wishes of his father, he studied medicine, graduating from the University of New York in 1842. Entering immediately into practice in Lynchburg, he was a prominent doctor in that city for half a century.

He was a surgeon in the Confederate Army, and apointed surgeon-in-chief of the hospitals at Lynchburg, a posi- tion for which he was particulary well qualified. He was a member of the Medical Society of Virginia.

Dr. Owen was a skillful surgeon and performed many important operations, such as ovariotomies, lithotomies, peri- neal sections, etc. In his work he was tireless, watchful and faithful, and while always dignified and positive, he was yet warmly sympathetic, and greatly beloved by his patrons.

He married, in 1863, Alice Lynn, and was survived by four sons and two daughters. His oldest son, R. O. Owen, was a physician.

He died at his home in Lynchburg, Vir- ginia, on the fifteenth of February, 1892, in the seventy-second year of his age, his death the result of a severe attack of epidemic influenza, compHcated with organic trouble and general physical decline. R. M. S.

Trans. Med. Soc. of Va., 1892.