Guide to the S. W. Welch Papers, RG 119

Listed by: Dieter C. Ullrich
Date: October 2003

Date Span:

0.10 cubic feet; 2 items.

Number of Boxes:
1 file folder.

Historical or Biographical Sketch:
Samuel Wallace Welch was a physician and served at the State Health Officer for State of Alabama from 1917 until his death in 1928. He was born on February 14, 1861, at Alpine, Talladega County, Alabama, the son of Dr. William Americus and Willie Ann (Wallace) Welch. Welch received his early education at Plantersville Institute. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1881 from Howard College in Marion, Alabama. He later received his medical education at Tulane University and Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. He began his own practice at Alpine but later moved to Talladega in 1903. Later the same year, he was elected a member of the committee of public health and the State board of examiners. In 1907 he resigned from this office having been unanimously elected president of the Alabama State medical association, and was re-elected to the committee of public health in 1909. He was appointed by Acting Governor Cunningham as delegate from Alabama to the International Tuberculosis Convention at St. Louis, in 1905, and was appointed by Governor O'Neal as delegate from Alabama to the International Convention on Demography and Hygiene at Washington, D. C. in 1912. While residing in Talladega he was county health officer for four years, served on county board of censors, a member of the Talladega County medical society for ten years and from 1907 to 1913, he was a member of the board of education for Talladega public schools. He was elected State health officer and on January 23, 1917 assumed office. In April of 1917, he was elected chairman of the State board of medical examiners, and in the same month Governor Henderson appointed him chairman of the State committee of National defense, medical section, a position he held throughout World War I. While serving in the latter position he spent a part of the summer of 1918 in Washington classifying the medical profession of Alabama for the Council of national defense. He was appointed in April of 1917, and reappointed in April of 1920, as a delegate to represent Alabama in the house of delegates of the American Medical Association, and represented the Alabama State board of medical examiners at the meeting of the council on medical education and hospitals in 1920. He also served as consulting surgeon for a number of railroads. He was member of the Odd Fellows and a Mason. He authored numerous papers read before the Alabama state medical association, and published in the proceedings of that body. (See History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography)

Scope and Content:
Consists of a scrapbook with newspaper clippings regarding the Spanish Influenza epidemic of 1918 taken from American newspapers and magazines. Includes a typescript report from the State Board of Health Officer overseeing the infirmary at the Alabama Polytechnic Institute (presently Auburn University) during the epidemic from the fall of 1918 to the spring of 1919.

Item list:

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