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History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925
Fred James Douglas, M. D.

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[This information is from Vol. III, pp. 72-75 of History of the Mohawk Valley: Gateway to the West 1614-1925, edited by Nelson Greene (Chicago: The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1925). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 974.7 G81h. This online edition includes lists of portraits, maps and illustrations. As noted by Paul Keesler in his article, "The Much Maligned Mr. Greene," some information in this book has been superseded by later research or was provided incorrectly by local sources.]

Contents | Portraits | Illustrations | Maps

Portrait of Fred James Douglas, M. D.

Portrait: Fred James Douglas, M. D.

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Dr. Fred James Douglas, who has been continuously identified with the medical profession in Utica for nearly three decades, may without invidious distinction be termed the most skilled surgeon in the city. His success may in a large measure be attributed to natural talents for a difficult and responsible vocation and conscientious preparation under competent instructors. He was born at Clinton, Massachusetts, on the 14th of September, 1869, a son of Andrew Douglas, who was a manufacturer of knit goods.

At the age of three years Fred James Douglas was brought by his parents to the Empire state. The family settled at Little Falls, Herkimer county, and in the public schools and college of that city he received his education. His professional training was acquired in Dartmouth Medical College of Hanover, New Hampshire, which institution he attended from 1892 until 1895, when the degree of M. D. was conferred upon him. Immediately after leaving college he came to Utica and for two years practiced at Faxton Hospital, of which institution he is now surgeon in charge. At the end of the two-year period devoted to hospital work he opened an office at No. 285 Genesee street, in Utica, and has since engaged actively in general practice here, making a specialty of surgery, in which branch of the profession his ability is pronounced. He was surgeon in charge of the City Hospital from 1898 to 1899 and served as health officer of Utica in 1900 to 1901. At all times he keeps in close touch with the most advanced methods and discoveries of his profession through his membership in the Oneida County Medical Society, the New York State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. He is also a fellow of the American College of Surgery.

In 1897, in Utica, New York, Dr. Douglas was united in marriage to Miss Kathleen McGraw, and to them have been born three children, namely: James Glass, Katharine Jean and Frederick John. Since age conferred upon him the right of franchise Dr. Douglas has been a stanch supporter of the men and measures of the republican party. As a member of the board of education in 1915 and 1916 and again in 1919, he rendered valuable service to the cause of public instruction. Elected mayor of Utica, he served in that capacity from the 1st of January, 1921, until the 1st of January, 1923, giving to the city a most progressive and businesslike administration characterized by many measures of reform, progress and improvement. He was the prime mover in purchasing the abandoned Erie Canal land through the city for the purpose of converting it into a street. Fraternally Dr. Douglas is prominent as a Mason, belonging to Oriental Lodge, No. 224, F. & A. M., and he is also affiliated with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks and with the Independent Order of Foresters. His appreciation for the social amenities of life is further indicated in his membership connection with the Little Falls Country Club, the Yahnundasis Golf Club and the Fort Schuyler Club. A contemporary biographer said of him:

"He is a constant student, a close and accurate observer and has met with more than the ordinary measure of success in his profession, enjoying an enviable reputation as a competent physician and also as a skilled surgeon. As a result of well applied effort he finds himself established in an intelligent community, surrounded by many friends and in the enjoyment of an excellent and profitable practice."

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