Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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GERHARD, William Wood, physician, born in Philadelphia, 23 July, 1809; died there, 28 April, 1872. He was graduated at Dickinson in 1826, and received the degree of M. D. from the University of Pennsylvania in 1832. After graduation he entered the Pennsylvania hospital as resident physician, where he spent three years in practical study. He then visited Europe, spent several years in Paris under the private instruction of the celebrated auscultator, Dr. Louis, and began investigations into the character of Asiatic cholera, small-pox, tubercular meningitis, and pneumonia in the young. He also collected a portion of the materials for his original work on typhoid and typhus fevers, which he afterward completed by establishing the specific differences between these two diseases. After his return to Philadelphia he was appointed lecturer in the medical institute, one of the visiting physicians to the Blockley hospital, assistant clinical lecturer to the late Professor Jackson, and subsequently one of the physicians to the Pennsylvania hospital, where he lectured to a large class of students, and for twenty-five successive years was the senior physician to that institution. He was the author of numerous valuable papers in the "American Journal of the Medical Sciences" and in the " Medical Examiner," of which paper he was editor, but his principal work was the " Diagnosis, Pathology, and Treatment of the Diseases of the Chest," which first appeared as a short treatise on the "Diagnosis of Thoracic Diseases" (1835). At the request of many of his pupils he added general symptoms and treatment, with additional lectures (1846; enlarged ed., 1860). It was again issued, being a 4th ed., in 1860, revised and enlarged (Philadelphia). He was also the author of "Spotted Fever, or Cerebro-Spinal Meningitis" (1863); "Fevers" (1867-'8); and a" Clinical Guide "(Philadelphia). He edited Graves's " System of Clinical Medicines," with notes and additions. His brother, Benjamin, lawyer, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1812; died there, 18 June, 1864, was graduated at Dickinson College in 1828, studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1832. He filled many responsible offices in his native City, and during the early part of the civil war was appointed provost marshal of Philadelphia to superintend the draft, performing the duties without compensation. He was also a founder and an officer of the Union league. His death was hastened by his devotion to the national cause. As a lawyer he ranked high, and published several carefully edited text-books, among which are "Starkie on Evidence" and Joshua Williams's "Principles of the Law of Personal Property" (2d American edition, from the 2d London edition, edited by Benjamin Gerhard and Samuel Wetherill, Philadelphia, 1855).
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