Page:A cyclopedia of American medical biography vol. 2.djvu/432

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SKILLMAX


880


SLAYTER


Skillman was from Puritan and Presby- terian ancestors, lie inheriteii the stern sense of duty and principle that charac- terized them, and passed a long life with- out departing from the tradition of his forebears. He began Hfe by sjiending two or three years at Lexington as nii apothecary, but determined in 1844 to study medicine and after three years' diligence graduated from Transylvania University, March, 1847.

Early appreciated, he was appointed in 1848 demonstrator of anatomy in the medical department of his alma mater, a position he filled so ably for three suc- cessive years that he was appointed to the chair of general and pathological anatomy and physiology in 1851, which position he retained until elected to the chair of physiology and institutes of medicine in 1856, lecturing before large classes, in these branches until the close of the institution in the summer of 1857.

He was distinguished for the accuracy and clearness of his teachings, was pains- taking and apt in his instructions, and his knowledge of the branches which he taught was abreast of his day and gener- ation. He was the last surviving mem- ber of the medical department of Transyl- vania University.

On October 30, 1851, he married Mar- garet, daughter of Matthew T. Scott, president of the Northern Bank of Ken- tucky.

Among his other appointments he was contract surgeon for the United States Government; president of the Kentucky State Medical Society, 1869. He was the first president of the Lexing- ton and Fayette County Medical Society, in 1889, and it is claimed that he was the first physician in Lexington to administer anesthesia.

He contributed many papers on top- ics particularly pertaining to medicine and materia medica to the " Transactions of the Kentucky State Medical Society." His knowledge of practical therapeutics was marvelous, which made him an accurate clinician, and his skill in surgery


was great, his office being always an attraction for medical students.

The confidence of the people was imbounded. Some of his admirers said, with Calvinistic logic, if "we're tae dee, we're tae, and if we're to live, we're to live," but all said this for the doctor, 'that whether you are to live or die, he can aye keep up a sharp moisture on the skin."

Dr. Skillman was active in all public- matters and greatly interested in every- thing pertaining to the growth and prosperity of his native city. He died at Lexington in March, 1902.

S. B.

Slack, Elijah (1784-1866).

Elijah Slack was both M. D. and LL. D. and was born in Bucks County, Penn- sylvania, November 6, 1784, graduating at Princeton in 1810 and soon after taking charge of an academy at Trenton, and subsequently being professor of natural sciences, and vice-president in Princeton College.

In 1817 he went to Cincinnati and in 1819, when the Medical College of Ohio was organized, was appointed professor of chemistry, which position he held for fourteen years.

He was also a minister of the Presby- terian Church. During the whole of his active life he was a teacher. Dr. Slack was the first president of the Cincinnati Medical Society, which was organized in 1819. He was also first president of Cincinnati College, incorporated the same year. He died May 29, 1866.

A. G. D.

Cinn. Lancet and Observer, 1S66, n. s., vol. ix.

Slayter, William B. (1841-1898).

William B. Slayter was born in Hali- fax, Nova Scotia, in 1841, and died there in 1898.

He practised for a few years in Chicago, and subsequently in Halifax for upwards of thirty years, then having taken his Arts' course at Trinity College, Toronto, he took his professional training there,