Elizabeth (Smith) Secord was born 1841 to Daniel & Phebe (Hartt) Smith of Blissville, Sunbury Co. NB. She became a school teacher and while teaching in Kings County, she met and married John Alfred Secord in 1869. After her husband's death in 1873 she set out to become a doctor. She studied at the Medical College in Keokuk, Iowa and graduated with an MD in 1881. She studied further at the Women's Hospital Medical College in Chicago and graduated in 1882. She came back to New Burnswick in 1882 and practiced briefly in the Woodstock area with visits also to Sunbury Co. She was registered as an MD in New Brunswick in June of 1883. She was New Brunswick's duly registered Female Medical doctor, and this was in the face of bitter opposition from the male dominated profession. She traveled to Ireland for further studies and practice. She studied at Dublin's Lying-in-Hospital. In 1885, she was the first woman to be granted a license in midwifery from that instiitution. She worked in London hospitals during the period from 1883-1885, after which she returned to practice in New Brunswick. She worked hard helping the sick and ailing. Keeping in step with the advance of medical science and always possessing the courage of her convictions; she commanded the respect of fellow practitioners. She was an earnest Christian worker. In 1908, Elizabeth took two of the "Middlemore Children" from England and would have signed a contract requiring that they be given an education and religious training until they were 16 years of age. They were still with her in 1911, according to the census. Their names were Herbert Morris born March 1895 and his sister Elsie May Morris born May 1897. The greatest sorrow of her life was the death of her only son soon after he had had graduated from Acadia University in 1891. He taught in Vancouver for a while. Then he relocated to San Antonio, Texas to take some College courses. He came home to die on Sept 1, 1893. She did not allow this to interfere with the great purpose of her life which was to bring health to the ailing and comfort to the distressed in soul. She practiced first at Fredericton Junction, then at Norton, NB, later moving to Farmerston in NB. She became very frail and was in failing health for some years. She passed away July 4, 1914 at her home in Farmerston, Carleton County, NB of tuberculosis, at age 72 years Source: Florence Clark and John Wood
Courtesy: C. Dick
Blissville, Sunbury County
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