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Biographical entry Elliott, John (1861 - 1921)

MRCS July 27th 1884; FRCS Dec 9th 1886; BSc Lond (Hons) 1880; MB (with Gold Medal in obstetric medicine and honours in medicine and forensic medicine) 1885; BS (with Gold Medal) 1886; MD 1888; MRCP Lond 1891; FRCP 1908; JP.

Whitechurch, ShropshirE, UK
19 December 1921


Born at Whitechurch, Shropshire; began his scientific education at Owens College, Manchester, and his medical education at St Bartholomew's, where he entered after winning the open scholarship in 1881. He was throughout a most brilliant student. He was House Surgeon in 1886-1887 and then Assistant Anaesthetist. Following upon that he was appointed Resident Surgical Officer at the Birmingham General Hospital.

In 1890 the prospect of practice in Chester came to him, so he turned from surgery to medicine, becoming MRCP, and in 1895 was appointed Physician to the Chester Royal Infirmary. He quickly gained a position as a consultant physician in the surrounding county, in particular by establishing a well-appointed laboratory in his house where he carried out the examinations demanded by the advances in medicine. He was elected FRCP in 1908. It was largely due to him that the Chester Royal Infirmary, founded in 1755, was reorganized, and the renovated buildings were opened by HM the King in 1914. On the institution of Venereal Clinics Elliott undertook the initiation at Chester, and at the Newcastle Meeting of the British Medical Association in July, 1921, he emphasized the importance of secrecy and entered a protest against the action of the High Court in forcing the disclosure of a patient's confidential information. At the time of his death he was President of the Lancashire and Cheshire Branch of the British Medical Association.

It was Elliott's wide and thorough knowledge of medical science which gained him the position he held as a physician acquainted with modern methods of examination. His scientific knowledge and forceful energy were still further exhibited as a member of the Chester City Council from 1895-1898; from 1918 he acted as JP; he was also an active member of the Chester Agricultural Society, and busied himself in the archaeology of the City, and in both X-ray and colour photography. During the War he was Physician to the Chester War Hospital and to a number of surrounding hospitals and military camps. He had practised at 24 Nicholas Street, Chester, when, in the midst of full activity, he was seized with an acute abdominal attack requiring immediate operation. He died after two days of illness on Dec 19th, 1921, survived by his widow, one son, and three daughters.

Among Elliott's publications was the important historical article, "A Medical Pioneer, John Haygarth of Chester, Physician to the Chester Royal Infirmary from 1707 to 1798." - Brit. Med. Jour., 1913, I, 235. The article, illustrated by beautiful photographs, is an extraordinarily full description of great medical interest. Haygarth was a pioneer in the isolation of cases of fever.

The Royal College of Surgeons of England