Mamie J. Tanquary, M. D., of Independence is one of the leading woman physicians and surgeons of Kansas. She comes of a family that has supplied several able members to the profession, and her work throughout the fifteen years she has practiced at Independence shows her capabilities are on a plane with her own brothers and her professional brethren throughout the state.
Doctor Tanquary, whose maiden name was Edwards, was born at Water Valley in Hickman County, Kentucky, April 29, 1870. She is of old Southern stock, but her first ancestors in the Edwards line came from England of Seotch-Irish lineage and were pioneer settlers in Tennessee. Through her paternal grandmother she is related to the noted Brigham family. The grandfather Edwards was a native of Tennessee, and had a plantation worked by slaves in that state before the war. He died in Tennessee.
W. H. Edwards, father of Doctor Tanquary, was born in Tennessee November 6, 1828. He spent the first twenty-one years of his life in his native state, and he then went with his parents to Hickman County, Kentucky, where he married. Prior to the war be owned a number of slaves, and conducted his planting operations by slave labor. Soon after the birth of his daughter, Doctor Tanquary, he moved out to Kansas, and became one of the early settlers in Chanute, and the homestead he took up and developed there was sold after his death. He died at Chanute March 10, 1914. He was a democrat and an elder in the Presbyterian Church and was also a member of the Masonic fraternity. W. H. Edwards married Antoinette A. Alexander, who was born in Hickman County, Kentueky, in 1834, and died at Chanute May 7, 1913. Doctor Tanquary was the eighth in a family of nine children, and some reference should be made to her brothers and sisters. The oldest, Maude, died in Hickman County, Kentucky, at the age of three years, and Flavius died there at the age of four years. Luna died unmarried at Chanute at the age of forty-nine. Sallie is the wife of S. J. Paul, who is now retired from business and lives at Hollywood, California. Eudora married J. R. Francis, a merchant at Carthage, Missouri. R. S. graduated from the Bennett Medical College at Chicago with the degree M. D., and while still active in his profession is giving much of his time to his fruit farm at Grand Bay, Alabama. J. B. Edwards, now one of the leading members of the medical profession at Chanute, and owner of the Chanute Hospital, graduated from the Louisville Medical College, afterwards took courses in the Chicago Post-Graduate School and the Chicago Policlinic, studied under the famous Mayo brothers at Rochester, Minnesota, in 1911, and interrupts his practice every year for some special course in some of the leading medical centers of the country. Walter, the youngest child, died at the age of nine years in Chanute, Kansas.
On February 21, 1871, when W. H. Edwards brought his family to Chanute, his daughter Mamie was not yet a year old. She grew up at Chanute, attended the public schools there, also the State Normal School at Emporia, and her first work outside of home was teaching. She spent one year in Neosho County and four years at Neodasha, in Wilson County. From early years she had felt that her mission was to serve her fellow men through the profession of medicine. After leaving the schoolroom she entered the Kansas Medical College at Topeka, where she spent two years, and in March, 1901, graduated M. D. from the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Kansas City, Kansas, a school now affiliated with the Kansas State University. Doctor Tanquary is not the type of physician who rests content with present attainments and in 1905 she spent several months in the Chicago Post-Graduate School, specializing in diseases of women and children, and in 1911 visited the clinics of the Mayo brothers at Rochester. For the past four years she has found much of her practice as a specialist in eye, ear, nose and throat diseases. She is a member of the County and State and American Medical associations. Since beginning practice at Independence on May 15, 1901, Doctor Tanquary has had her time and energies almost completely occupied by the increasing calls made for her services both as a physician and as a surgeon. Her offices are in the Booth Building, and she resides at 317 North Eighth Street. Doctor Tanquary also owns a farm of 160 acres seven miles southeast of Independence, and operates that through renters. She is a member of the Independence Commercial Club, and is affiliated with Eva Chapter No. 18 of the Order of Eastern Star and with the Royal Neighbors. She is a member and liberal supporter of the Methodist Church. On May 5, 1897, at Chanute she married Earl D. Tanquary, who was born in Indiana, received his early education at Neodesha, Kansas, and graduated M. D. from the College of Physicians and Surgeons in Kansas City. Doctor Tanquary has one daughter, Blendena, who is now a sophomore in the Central College at Lexington, Missouri.