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Images from the Scrapbook of GEORGE WEIRS KING, M.D. (1845-1929)
INVENTOR, PHYSICIAN and SURGEON
August-September 2008

The Biography of Dr. George W. King, by Joaquin Miller, published in 1894

George W. King, the leading medical practitioner of Marysville, descended from one of the pioneer families of Vermont, his ancestors having located in that State previous to the Revolutionary war. The paternal grandfather served with Washington in that struggle and participated in the hardships endured by the patriot soldiers at Valley Forge. The father of our subject, Cyrus W. King, was also born in Vermont. He married Miss Louisa E. Duncan, a native of Quebec, Canada, and a daughter of James Duncan, an early settler of that province and founder of the village of Chrysastum. He resided there until his death, which occurred at the age of seventy-four years. Mr. and Mrs. King had ten children, six sons and four daughters, nine of whom still survive. The father lived to a good old age, and the mother is still living, aged eighty-seven years.

George W. King, the ninth child in order of birth in the above family, was born at Malone, New York, October 20, 1852. He attended the public schools of his native place, afterward took a special course at the Cornell University and graduated at the medical department of the University of Michigan, at Ann Arbor, in 1877. He then served as assistant surgeon at the university one year, next followed the practice of his profession at Kempton, Illinois, two and a half years, practice in New York City one year, and then went to Chicago.

While in [Chicago] Mr. King suffered a severe attack of pneumonia. After his recovery he was offered the position of surgeon at Marysville for the Montana Company, and believing that the climate of this place would prove beneficial to his health, he accepted, arriving here in 1883. Mr. King has since resided in this city, and has filled his position with the company in a most satisfactory manner, as well as doing a general practice in Marysville and the surrounding country. He has also invented many appliances for his use in surgery. One is a valuable device in which to set fractured limbs, and another is used to place injured men while raising them out of the mines. He takes special and laudable pride in surgery, and has performed many difficult and important operations with utmost success, which he has from time to time reported in interesting articles to the medical association of the State. He is a member of that society and has the honor of being its first vice-president. The Doctor has invested largely in Helena city property, where he has built a beautiful residence, but gives close attention to his patients in Marysville.

Dr. King was married July 25, 1881, to Miss Aramella J. Griffen. They have two daughters, Georgia E. and Mildred L., born in Montana. Our subject is a member of the Masonic fraternity, of the Knight Templars and Shrine, and also of the A. O. U. W. and the K of P. In political matters he affiliates with the Republican Party.

An illustrated history of the state of Montana : containing a history of the state of Montana from the earliest period of its discovery to the present time, together with glimpses of its auspicious future; illustrations and full-page portraits of some of its eminent men, and biographical mention of many of its pioneers and prominent citizens of to-day: Lewis Publishing, 1894

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Dr. George Weirs King

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Fish bone removed from side by Dr. King

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Dr. King demonstrating x-ray shield
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X-ray; bullet in heel


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Drumm-Lummon mine, Marysville, Montana
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Dr. King and some of the officers and the working staff, Montana Mining Company Limited
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Groups of miners at the Drumm-Lummon mine, Marysville, Montana
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Litter devised and used by Dr. King at the Drumm-Lummon Mine, Montana


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Dr. King's Fracture Apparatus for setting fractures of leg
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Advertisement of King's Fracture Treatment

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King's Fracture Treatment



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Amputation by Dr. King of anterior part of feet

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Spring Portion inserted into ordinary shoes; enables patient to walk without limping
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Inner part of improved shoe containing spiral springs; duplicates elasticity of feet in walking


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X-ray: penny-whistle in esophagus; removed by Dr. King and patient from who whistle was removed



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Club foot showing result of treatment by Dr. King



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Removal of outer table of scull by Dr. King showing necrosis of the bone



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Fatty Tumor of the neck removed by Dr. King




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Orbital tumor removed by Dr. King




A more recent and unpublished biography, included in the King biographical file, clarifies and extends our knowledge of Dr. King's life and work: Dr. George Weirs King, son of Cyrus Weirs King and Louisa Permelia Duncan, was born October 1845 in Bellmont, Franklin County, New York, and died June 26, 1929 in Portland, Multnomah County, Oregon. He is buried there in Rose City Cemetery.

After spending his youth in Bellmont, New York, George W. King entered Cornell University in Ithaca with sophomore standing in the fall of 1874, attending for just one year. He transferred into medical school at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor as a junior in September 1875, graduating in 1877.

At the time of the 1880 federal census, George lived with his brother David Woodbury King in Mona, Ford County, Illinois, where he worked as a physician and David as an architect. Their residence was not far from that of the Eli Griffen family. He married Armilla Jane Griffen, July 25, 1881 in Kempton, Ford County, Illinois (although some records state Cook County). She was the daughter of Elli Griffen and Deborah Cortright. Usually called "Millie" by family members, she was born January 10, 1860 in Whiteside County, Illinois and died February 7, 1941. George W. King was employed as a doctor and surgeon in Helena, Montana and later in Portland, Oregon.

In 1892, he filed a patent with the U.S. Patent Office in Washington, D.C. for a "Fracture Apparatus." In his application, he wrote, "In the treatment of fractures there is always difficulty, even with the aid of an assistant, in maintaining the limb in proper position and much extra pain is occasioned by frequent moving of the injured limb during the application of splints or bandages. My invention is designed to obviate this difficulty by providing a portable apparatus by means of which the operator, without the aid of an assistant, can apply and maintain proper extension and counter-extension of, and support for, the broken limb, and, at the same time have free access to every part of it for the convenient application of the splints or bandages."

(Note: there is a discrepancy regarding King's date of birth)

This biography was compiled by:

Deborah Lynn Guber, Associate Professor
Department of Political Science
The University of Vermont
Old Mill, Room 532
94 University Place
Burlington, VT 05405-0114

E-mail: Deborah.Guber@uvm.edu
Internet: http://www.uvm.edu/~dguber/
Phone: 802-656-4062
Fax: 802-656-0758

Publications

King, George W., "Static Electricity in Medicine", [no date]

King, George W., "Necrosis of the Cranial Bones - With an Illustrative Case". Reprinted from, The International Journal of Surgery, June 1901.

King, George W., "The Physician's Responsibility in the Treatment of Fractures". Reprinted from The New York Medical Journal, May 28, 1892.

King, George W., M.D., "External Urethrotomy: Deep strictures of the Urethra with Illustrative Cases". Reprint from The Medical Sentinel, December, 1894.

King, George W., M. D., "A Fishbone Removed from the Left Hypochondrium of a Man - Complete Recovery". Reprinted from, International Journal of Surgery, March 1993.

King, George W., M.D., "The Convalescence of Fractures". Reprinted from The New York Medical Journal, August 26, 1893.

King, George W., M.D., "Improved Traction Instrument, for Dressing Fractures". Reprinted from, International Journal of Surgery, [no date]

King, George W., M.D., "Convenient Method of Applying the Plaster-of-Paris Bandage to Fractures of the Leg", Reprinted from, the Medical Record, August 22, 1891.

"Report of the State Inspector of Mines". [no date]


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