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hta1970
01-17-2008, 12:49 AM
Ok, I have seenn this done one way by many reenactors but my research has shown something else. How would a doctor in the service (I have only researched the Confederate service) by adddressed.

In writing I only see them signing as surgeon or assistant surgeon. This comes from surviving documents and also to the rank listed in the compiled military service records.

In what I can only suppose is the less official term used when speaking I onlt see them refered to as doctor. This comes from surviving letters and memoirs of Confederate doctors.

Any thoughts or comments? Am I way off base here? I just see many reenactors in the medical service using the ranks of captian and major etc in reference to their impression or in addition to thier medical title.

Thanks!

"Doc" Nelson
01-17-2008, 02:55 AM
Well, they were usually addressed in one of a few ways (or all): doctor, sir, Surgeon/Assistant Surgeon or by their respective ranks (i.e. Lieutenant, Captain, Major, etc.).

I'm not sure if this is what you're looking for??? As for documents, I have seen Medical Officers sign their name followed by "Surgeon or Assistant Surgeon", then their department . . . and sometimes, their respective rank (i.e. Captain, etc.) as follows:


John Doe, Surgeon, 1st Division Hopistal Corps

As for any "common" way during the period. All I can suggest is, continue researching actual documents. There are a ton of documents out there to refer to. Also, contact The National Museum of Civil War Medicine to see what they have in the way of records and such. I don't think there is one specific way of addressing a Medical Officer. I don't know if I have been of any help??

coffeecooler80
01-25-2008, 06:44 PM
Ok, I have seenn this done one way by many reenactors but my research has shown something else. How would a doctor in the service (I have only researched the Confederate service) by adddressed.

In writing I only see them signing as surgeon or assistant surgeon. This comes from surviving documents and also to the rank listed in the compiled military service records.

In what I can only suppose is the less official term used when speaking I onlt see them refered to as doctor. This comes from surviving letters and memoirs of Confederate doctors.

Any thoughts or comments? Am I way off base here? I just see many reenactors in the medical service using the ranks of captian and major etc in reference to their impression or in addition to thier medical title.

Thanks!



Was looking over one of my books "Doctors in Blue, by George Worthington Adams. The full title, The Medical History of the Union Army in the Civil War.

Page 4:

"Next to economy Colonel Lawson was most concerned over the military status of his corps. He is credited with having secured the passage of the act of 1847 which conferred army rank upon the surgeons. They had previously been called simply "doctor"; now might be greeted as "captain" and "major".

Keeping that in mind I quickly scanned the OR's it seems at least on the Union side you will see in the reports as "surgeon Smith" or "surgeon Jones". In the few examples they did not use rank when mentioning a surgeon. Even in the Medical Department heads it was only surgeon. I am sure they used rank and I am sure that in looking at all the reports would reveal inconsistencies in how Doctors were address....

Good Luck.

hta1970
01-30-2008, 10:28 PM
Jimmy,

I am slowly working my way through the records on 2nd Corps ANV and every surgeon, assistant surgeon or hospital steward I have come across simply signs their same followed by the one of the three about mentioned medical ranks.

I have never seen a period reference to any medical officer, in reports, pay vouchers or compilied military service records being referred to as captain, major, etc...

I have also read "Doctor to the Front," Confederate Commando and Fleet Surgeon" and "Hunter Holmes McGuire Doctor in Gray." In none of these can I find a single reference to a medical officer being refered to as anything other than Assistant Surgeon or Surgeon. Not once can I find any use of military rank such as captain or major by or for a medical officer.

I have also looked in the ORs and so far can only see the use of assistant surgeon, surgeon or medical director. Again no use of military rank by or for medical officers.

Can you please let me know where you have seen medical officers being referred to by or with military rank like captain or major etc... I obviously haven't had the luck you have with finding such period references.

Thanks!


Well, they were usually addressed in one of a few ways (or all): doctor, sir, Surgeon/Assistant Surgeon or by their respective ranks (i.e. Lieutenant, Captain, Major, etc.).

I'm not sure if this is what you're looking for??? As for documents, I have seen Medical Officers sign their name followed by "Surgeon or Assistant Surgeon", then their department . . . and sometimes, their respective rank (i.e. Captain, etc.) as follows:


John Doe, Surgeon, 1st Division Hopistal Corps

As for any "common" way during the period. All I can suggest is, continue researching actual documents. There are a ton of documents out there to refer to. Also, contact The National Museum of Civil War Medicine to see what they have in the way of records and such. I don't think there is one specific way of addressing a Medical Officer. I don't know if I have been of any help??