Notes from the past…

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If you have a 19th century Texas physician in your family…

You might want to check out this site:

John P. McGovern Historical Collections and Research Center

It is associated with the University of Houston School of Medicine and has a lot of documents and information about Texas doctors from the late 1800′s-early 1900′s. I found info on my 2 Texas MD’s. One, Dr Thomas Joshua Bennett (1854-1927), at one time was a partner in the ownership of Austin Sanitarium, one of the major hospitals located in the Texas capital. I found 3 early photos of that hospital, and even better, there are copies of Polks Medical Register and Directory of the United States and Canada from 1886, 1896, 1902 and 1906. Only the portion applicable to Texas is posted, but each physician in Texas is supposed to be listed. This is Dr Bennett’s listing from 1906:

That’s a lot of info!
I also found my other physician-ancestor, Dr Nathan Blunt Kennedy (1836-1897), of Hillsboro. Not as much info was given about Dr Kennedy, maybe because he was from an earlier time period.
Anyway, I have found a lot of documents online about Dr Bennett, and added them to my FTM database.

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An exciting find!

I have started with the surname folders, alphabetically. On Saturday, I added all the info from the Appling file to my FTM database and carefully documented everything. They are a “lesser” family, as far as my direct lines go, so that job didn’t really take long. Next was the Bennett file. There is a whole herd of Bennetts from the San Saba area, so it’s gonna take a while to get them all documented! I was studying the file of Dr Thomas Joshua Bennett (1854-1927) of Austin, my second great granduncle from my Dad’s side. I have a lot of info on him, but there’s a hole where the 1920 Federal Census should be. I know he died in 1927, and some of my info has him retiring from his medical practice about 1920. So, maybe he went on vacation or something and missed the census-taker! I did find one neighbor from the 1910 census living at the same location in 1920, and Thomas is no longer her next-door neighbor. Sneaky little fella, he’s playing hard to get! Anyway, while search through the Travis County, Texas GenWeb site, I accidentally came across a probate documentation for Thomas’ sister, Mary Lavina (Mamie) Bennett. Now Mamie, my second greatgrandmother, was married to John Spurgeon Carroll. In 1900, the family is living in San Saba. BUT… in 1910 John Spurgeon Carroll is living in San Marcos with his new wife Georgia, but his children from his marriage to Mamie are still living with him. Now, I knew he had another wife, but I never knew what happened to Mamie. She just fell off the planet, apparently, because I couldn’t find her anywhere! I thought she probably had died, since her kids stayed with John and his new wife. Well, this probate mention is from August of 1917, and just guess what it deals with…? Mamie Bennett had been declared NCM (non compos mentis). What is NCM? It is an adjective “referring to someone who is insane or not mentally competent to conduct one’s affairs”! Another nutcase in the family!!! This time it’s on my Dad’s side of the family, too. There are oodles of “NCM’s” on my Mom’s side.
This is sooooo exciting! I have been looking for Mamie Bennett for 3 years, at least! I’m gonna contact the San Saba courthouse and try to get a copy of Mamie’s NCM file ASAP!
Ok, it’s almost 1AM, I gotta go to bed!

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That last little bit is done, too!

All the scraps are officially gone! I have 1 batch of notes from my research trip to the Fort Worth Public Library Genealogy Dept and 1 from the Hill County courthouse that will remain intact for now. Everything else is filed away and my desk is clean and clear!
I also went through some saved email that had genealogy dealings and put each in the appropriate surname folder. There were 3 sets or correspondence from my volunteering with Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness (RAOGK) that I printed out and placed in the ROAGK folder.
Looking good!