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J. W. Neal, M. D., physician and surgeon, Charleston; was born July 22, 1851, in what is now Cumberland Co., but then a part of Coles Co.; his father. William Neal, is a prominent and wealthy farmer and stock-raiser, who came to the State fifty-five years ago, at the age of years, from Bourbon Co., Ky.; Dr. Neal remained at home on the farm till he was 19 years old, then entered Lee’s Academy, in this county, graduating in 1871, and at once began the study of medicine with Dr. T. B. Dora, of Mattoon. The winter of 1872-73 he attended a course of lectures in the Eclectic Medical College, Cincinnati, Ohio; in the spring of 1873, he began practice with Dr. Dora, and the following spring removed to Stockton; in September, 1874, he entered Bennett Medical College, Chicago, graduating and receiving his degree of M. in January, 1875. On the 19th of May following, he married Miss Lizzie McCrory, daughter of James McCrory, of Stockton, and removed to Hutchinson, Kan. On the 17th of February, 1877, he was elected Vice President of the State Eclectic Medical Society, at Topeka; in October, 1877, he returned to the Eclectic Medical College, in Cincinnati, where he graduated Jan. 22, 1878, receiving the first honors of the institution, being selected by his class to deliver the valedictory address; he at once located at Charleston, and entered upon the practice of his profession. They have had two children – Gertrude, born March 7, 1876, and Fred. M., born Feb. 18, 1878, and died March 26, of the same year.