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Biographical entry Ware, James Thomas (1817 - 1902)

MRCS May 8th 1840; FRCS April 17th 1845.

30 July 1902
General surgeon


The eldest son of Martin Ware (qv), of Tilford, Surrey, and of Anne, younger daughter of the Rev Thomas Taylor, of Tilford, and of Whitlenge, Worcestershire. His grandfather was James Ware, FRS (1756-1815), the surgeon and ophthalmologist and founder of the Society for the Relief of Widows and Orphans of Medical Men in London, of whom there is an account in the Dictionary of National Biography.

James Thomas Ware entered at St Bartholomew's Hospital as a student in 1835, was subsequently House Surgeon, and in later life a Governor of the Hospital. He studied in Berlin, Paris, and Vienna, and subsequently lived on the family estate at Tilford House, where he acted unostentatiously as a country gentleman and benefactor.

Before 1842 there was no such thing in the country as a convalescent home, and being struck by the need for fresh air and treatment after discharge from hospital - particularly in the case of a poor girl whose leg had been amputated in St Bartholomew's Hospital - he founded, with the aid of friends' subscriptions, the Metropolitan Convalescent Institution, which opened homes at Walton, Broadstairs, and at Highgate. Ware took an active part in the management of the Institution, was one of the Surgeons from 1840, and later a Vice-President.

In 1883 he met with an accident to his knee from which he did not recover completely and for the last two years of his life had to keep his bed. He died at Tilford on July 30th, 1902. He married Ursula, daughter of Robert Maitland, of Barcaple, Kirkcudbrightshire, but left no children, and with him ended the direct line of succession of a family of surgeons. Ware followed in the steps of his father, Martin Ware (qv), being distinguished for his benevolence, his talent, and the amenity of his manners.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Information kindly given by his nephew, A M Ware, MD Cantab, and grandson of Martin Ware].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England