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Biographical entry Grant, John William Geary (1865 - 1947)

MRCS 13 February 1890; FRCS 9 December 1909; LRCP 1890.

27 November 1865
23 October 1947
General surgeon


Born 27 November 1865 at Plymouth, the only son of Admiral John Frederick George Geary Grant, RN and his wife Eliza Jane Gardner. Grant suffered from a lame leg, or he would probably have entered the Navy for his grandfather had also been an admiral. He was educated privately and at St Thomas's Hospital. He was house surgeon at the Royal Infirmary, Halifax, and clinical assistant at the Evelina Hospital, London, and in 1900 was appointed resident medical officer at the Royal Infirmary, Cardiff. From 1901 to 1909 he was in general practice at Llanwrtyd Wells, but feeling a vocation to surgery he took the Fellowship at the end of 1909 and then returned to Cardiff, where he was soon appointed to the staff of the Royal Infirmary. During the war of 1914-18 he served at the Western General Military Hospital at Whitchurch near Cardiff.

When wholetime professorial "units" were set up after the war, Grant was appointed first assistant under A W Sheen in the surgical unit at the Welsh National School of Medicine; he was an inspiring teacher. Grant was consulting surgeon to the Treherbert Hospital, the King Edward VII Welsh National Memorial, and the miners' hospitals at Porth, Bridgend, Caerphilly, Abertwssyg, and Pentwyn. He was appointed consulting surgeon to the Cardiff Royal Infirmary on reaching the age limit. He served as vice-president of the section of surgery at the Cardiff meeting of the British Medical Association in 1928. He practised for thirty-four years at 19 Windsor Place, Cardiff.

Grant married twice: (1) in 1901 Margaret Beatrice Buttery, whose two daughters survived him; (2) in 1932 Alice Olwen Waddleton, who survived him, but without children. He retired in 1946 to 44 Southland Road, Rodwell, Weymouth, where he died on 23 October 1947 aged 81. Grant was a very upright man, lovable, courteous, cheerful, and kind. He was an omnivorous reader of the professional literature.


Acute necrosis of the pancreas. Brit med J 1928, 1, 1101.
Cancer of the rectum. Clin J 1932, 61, 570.
Half a century of surgery. Med Press, 1944, 212, 59 and 78.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Lancet, 1947, 2, 706; Brit med J 1947, 2, 750, with appreciation by Professor Lambert Rogers, FRCS, and p 799 by Dr A Brownlee; information from Mrs Geary Grant].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England