Woman of the Century/S. Anna Gordon
GORDON, Mrs. S. Anna, physician and author, born in Charlemont, Mass., 9th January, 1832. On her father's side she is a descendant of John Steele, who founded the colony of Connecticut S. ANNA GORDON. and established the town, now city, of Hartford. Among the distinguished persons in her family lineage was Noah Webster. On her mother's side she is a descendant of William Ward, of Sudbury, many of whose descendants won historic distinction as military men and statesmen. She early removed with her parents to New York, where she was reared and took the first year of a college course of study, which was afterwards completed in Illinois. She was married in Wisconsin, in 1858, to W. A. Gordon, M. D., of Wausau. Some years previous she had charge of the ladies' department in Rock River Seminary, and subsequently the same position was twice tendered her in Ripon College. The principalship of the State Normal School of Wisconsin, which was soon to be opened, had been tendered her through the governor of the State, and was awaiting her acceptance. She attended teachers' institutes, wherever held throughout the State, for the purpose of agitating the subject of a normal school, until the desire became an object accomplished. After her marriage she immediately commenced the study of medicine with her husband, attended a partial course of lectures, and was called upon by the people to assist him in an overburdening practice. In 1859 and 1860 they were connected with the Smithsonian Institution, taking meteorological notes and making collections for the same. She filled an engagement of one year as associate editor on the "Central Wisconsin," and then joined her husband in Louisville, Ky., where he was stationed most of the time during the Civil War. There she gave considerable time to the study of art, the remaining time being devoted to the relief of the suffering soldiers around her. Situated near her husband's headquarters at one time was a camp of homeless southern refugees, overtaken by the smallpox. They could find no physician to serve them. Dr. Gordon was prohibited both by want of time and the exposures it would bring to the soldiery. She learned of their pitiful condition and at once went to their relief and fought the scourge until it vanished. She served her husband as hospital officer in different capacities as unavoidable circumstances created vacancies not readily supplied. She was a weekly contributor to the literary columns of the Louisville "Sunday Journal" during the war. She has been a member of the Dante Society since its organization, and in 1882 and 1883 was State editor for the Missouri Woman's Christian Temperance Union on the Chicago "Signal" During a residence in Denver, Col., she was the first person to suggest the demand for the newsboys' home there, which she had the opportunity of aiding in establishing. She was also assistant superintendent of Chinese work in that city for some time. She is author of a book entitled "Camping in Colorado," and several papers and poems that have entered into other collections. In medicine she is a homceopathist. She was graduated in 1889 with honors from the Hahnemann Medical College of Chicago. Her home is now in Hannibal. Mo.