Pioneering Families
... with Roots in Madison County

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  EBENEZER H. THURSTON, M.D., was born in Wolverhampton, England, December 22, 1838, being the sort of Thomas and Elizabeth (Shaw) Thurston. His parents came to America in 1845, and, settling in Madison County, N.Y., gave their son the best of educational advantages. At the district schools of his neighborhood, the Hubbardsville Academy, and under the private tutorage of Professor James Bush, he obtained a permanent substructure for an academic and medical education. In 1859, his parents removed to Utica, where he continued his studies at the academy and commented his medical career as a pupil under Dr. M. M. Bagg, of that city. While pursuing his medical studies at Utica, the War began, and he enlisted in April 1861, leaving Utica with the 14th New York Infantry Volunteers. His general education and knowledge of medicine soon found recognition, and he was attached to the hospital department of his regiment, acting as steward. In this capacity he was taken prisoner at the battle of Gaines's Mills, June 27, 1862, and lodged in Libby prison. There the doctor remained until the following November, when he was released and sent to St. John's College Hospital, Annapolis, Md. There he passed an examination and was appointed hospital steward, U. S. A., partly as a reward for services rendered the government in attending the sick and wounded officers and soldiers in Libby Prison. He held this position for some time, until worn out by imprisonment and long continued hardship in field and post hospitals, he succumbed to a severe attack of typhoid fever. As his health was greatly impaired, he received his discharge from the army. Upon his convalescence, he resumed his medical studies, and, in 1864, obtained his degree of M.D. from the University of Buffalo, and then immediately proceeded to the seat of State government, at Albany, N.Y. He there passed a rigid medical examination, and was granted a commission as assistant-surgeon of the 8th New York Cavalry, and was with that gallant regiment in all its battles from Petersburg to Appomattox Court House. At the close of the war he was breveted surgeon and honorably mustered out of service at Rochester, N.Y., July, 1865. He was greatly respected and beloved by his fellow officers and soldiers, and remains in friendly correspondence with many of. them to this day. From the close of his services in the army until 1870, he followed his profession in the State of New York, and then removed to Chicago. Dr. Thurston's career in this city as physician and surgeon is too well known to require mention in this brief biography. His large and increasing practice attest his professional skip and well-deserved popularity. He is a member of the Oneida County and the Chicago Medical societies, and also a member of the Illinois State Medical Society. The doctor was married, in May, 1866, to Julia F. Randall, daughter of James Randall, of Utica, N. Y. They have one child, Grace.

Andreas, A. T. History of Chicago, New York: Arno Press, 1975, volume 2, pp. 534-535.



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