BENJAMIN D. WOODSON, M.D.
Vol. 5, p. 1908
Immediately after his graduation from Memphis Hospital College, Memphis, Tennessee, in 1890, Dr. Benjamin D. Woodson came to what was then Indian Territory and entered upon the practice of his profession at Monroe, and since that time has continued to follow his vocation in this section. Since 1912 he has been located at Poteau, where he is known as a skilled and successful practitioner, and in 1915 was appointed county superintendent of health for LeFlore County.
Doctor Woodson was born near Hartford, Sebastian County, Arkansas, March 6, 1868, and is a son of William G. and Nettie (TANER) Woodson. His father was a native of Virginia and a member of an old and highly respected family of Irish origin whose residence was in the vicinity of the City of Richmond. William G. Woodson was reared to manhood in Virginia, and when the Civil war came on joined one of the volunteer regiments from his state in the service of the Confederacy and fought valiantly as a soldier for the cause he deemed just. The war over he moved to Arkansas, where he was married to Nettie Taner, a native of Texas, and they became the parents of five children, of whom Benjamin D. is the only survivor. A farmer by vocation, William G. Woodson's first location in Arkansas was in the vicinity of Greenwood, the county seat of Sebastian County, and later he moved to near Hartford, in the same county, that property continuing to be his home until 1882. At that time he came to a tract of land located near Monroe, in Indian Territory, where he died in 1883, aged about sixty years.
Benjamin D. Woodson was only about fifteen years of age when his father died, and he is accordingly greatly indebted to the late C. C. MATTHEWS of Wister, Oklahoma, for fatherly care and advice. He was reared as a farmer, but early determined upon a professional career, and after receiving his primary education in the public schools entered Buckner College, Witcherville, Arkansas, where he was graduated in 1884. For two years thereafter he was engaged in teaching school, thus earning the means wherewith to pursue his professional studies, and entered Memphis Hospital College, Memphis, Tennessee, where he was graduated with the degree of Doctor of Medicine in 1890. Returning to Monroe, Indian Territory, he opened a small office and hung out his shingle, and in the course of the next few years experienced the trials and disappointments through which every young physician is forced to pass before he can gain a foothold. However, he was persevering and instead of showing his patience, cheerfully and industriously sought to impress himself favorably upon the community, so that practice was gradually attracted to him and from that time forward his success was assured. In 1912, feeling that he had outgrown his community, he looked about for a broader scene for his activities and came to Poteau, where he has since built up an excellent general practice. On May 1, 1915 his abilities were recognized by his appointment to the office of the county superintendent of health for LeFlore County. He keeps abreast of the progress made in his profession, and has taken two post-graduate courses, 1893 and 1900, at the Chicago Polyclinic, of Chicago, Illinois. He keeps likewise in touch with the medical brotherhood, and is a member of the LeFlore County Medical Society, the Oklahoma State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. Fraternally, he is a Royal Arch Mason, a Pythian and an Odd Fellow. His religious faith is that of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South.
Doctor Woodson was married in 1895 to Miss Lillie MCCLURE, a native of Arkansas, and to this union have been born five children.
SOURCE: Thoburn, Joseph B., A Standard History of Oklahoma, An Authentic Narrative of its Development, 5 v. (Chicago, New York: The American Historical Society, 1916).
Transcribed by Peg Luce, April 2001.