Thursday, June 19, 2003

Ohio Moments

Local doctor promoted eclectic medicine

On June 19, 1893, Dr. John King - a leader of American eclecticism, a branch of alternative medicine that espoused the use of Native American herbs - died in North Bend.

Born in New York in 1813, King graduated from Wooster Beach's School of Reformed Medicine in 1838. Reform Movement adherents believed standard medical practices were dangerous and caused unnecessary pain. King attended the first National Convention of Reform Medical Practitioners in Cincinnati in 1848. At the convention, a national association was formed and King was made secretary.

In 1851, he became chairman of obstetrics and diseases of women and children at the Eclectic Medical Institute in Cincinnati. The college received its charter from Ohio in 1845 and became the leading eclectic education institution in the country. King was professor of obstetrics until he had a stroke in 1890. Eclecticism lost favor in the 20th century, and the school graduated its last class in 1939.

Rebecca Goodman

E-mail or call (513) 768-8361.

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