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Biographical entry Morgan, John (1820 - 1891)

MRCS April 30th 1841; FRCS Aug 16th 1849.

20 April 1820
20 November 1891
General surgeon


Born at Bath on April 20th, 1820, the son of a medical practitioner who died soon after; was of Welsh origin in Glamorganshire, an uncle having been Rector of Lampeter College. Mrs Morgan, one of the Biggs of Wiltshire, for her only child's education, lived first at Clifton and passed the holidays with her family at Bapton, in Wiltshire. She moved to London when her son entered King's College. He was apprenticed to William Henry Hodding, who practised at 67 Gloucester Place, Portman Square, where he learnt both to compound prescriptions and to drive his master's carriage. Then he entered St George's Hospital, attended lectures by Thomas Tatum and Charles Johnston, and, among other prizes, gained the Brodie Medal, which thirty years later his son, John Hammond Morgan (qv), also won. After qualifying he returned to Bath in 1842 and acted as House Surgeon to the United Hospital, after which he came back to London and joined in partnership with Edgar Barker in 1845, near Hyde Park Square, a neighbourhood where there were numerous wealthy and influential residents. He had many friends, including Sir Benjamin Brodie and Sir Charles Locock, and in 1860 he moved to Sussex Place, where for a time he practised single-handed; later he took a partner.

In 1877 he had a bad attack of rheumatic fever which caused him to take holidays and to travel abroad during the spring and make country visits in the autumn. After a sudden and brief illness he died at 3 Sussex Place on Nov 20th, 1891, and was buried at Willesden. Mrs Morgan had predeceased him in 1875; their only son was John Hammond Morgan (qv), Surgeon to Charing Cross Hospital. In December, 1891, Morgan's friends held a meeting in Sir John Aird's drawing-room at 14 Hyde Park Terrace, under the chairmanship of Lord Chief Justice Coleridge, and a sum was collected and handed to the British Medical Benevolent Fund to form the John Morgan Annuity, as he had been a Vice-President of the Fund (Lancet, 1891, ii, 1372).

Sources used to compile this entry: [Lancet, 1891, ii, 1258. Brit Med Jour, 1891, ii, 1240].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England