Biography of John F. Dewar, M.D.

John Forrest Dewar, physician and surgeon, was a son of John Dewar, advocate, Edinburgh, Scotland, and was there born, May 3, 1834. The maiden name of his mother was Elizabeth Burnet. The Dewars are an old MidLothian family. The paternal grandfather of our subject was a surgeon in Edinburgh.

Dr. Dewar received his literary and medical education in his native city; walked several hospitals on the continent, with a special view of witnessing surgical operations; practiced a short time at Turin, Italy, and in 1859 emigrated to Canada and settled in Port Hope, here practicing until his demise, August 8,1877.

Dr. Dewar stood very high in the medical profession in the Province, and was for one term President of the Medical Council of Ontario. Surgery was his favorite branch of the healing art, though he was in general practice, and had an extensive business. He was physician to Trinity College School from its foundation till he died, and took great interest in educational matters, serving as trustee of the public schools of Port Hope for some time. He did a great deal of business as consulting physician and surgeon, his judgment being superior as well as his skill, and was frequently called to a considerable distance from home.

Dr. Dewar was the first man at Port Hope to administer chloroform to patients, and for some time the only physician in this vicinity that made a practice of its use. In this direction as in every other, he was a success. He was a great reader, a thorough medical student all his days, and had one of the best medical libraries in these parts. His tastes and studies were decidedly scientific. A few years before his death, the Doctor met with a serious railroad accident, from which he never fully recovered.

He was a member of St. John’s Episcopal church, and died as he had lived, strong in the christian faith. He was a liberal supporter of the Gospel, and of benevolent objects.

The widow of Dr. Dewar was Miss Anne Hughes, daughter of Charles Hughes, Port Hope married July 11, 1868. She has had three children, two of them being with their father in the spirit world. Florence Ruby, seven years old, is the only member of the family left to comfort her. She was his second wife, he marrying before leaving the old country. His first wife lived only one short year after their settlement in Port Hope.

MLA Source Citation:

The Canadian Biographical Dictionary and Portrait Gallery of Eminent and Self Made Men, Ontario, Volume 1. Toronto: Toronto American Biographical Pub. Co. 1880. Web. 31 January 2015. - Last updated on Aug 7th, 2012


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