Browse Fellows


www Lives

Biographical entry Hewetson, John Thomas (1872 - 1936)

MRCS 4 August 1896; FRCS 8 June 1899; MB CM Edinburgh 1896; MD 1901; ChM Birmingham 1905; LRCP 1896; FRCOG 1929.

18 October 1872
Armathwaite, Cumberland
19 May 1936
Obstetrician and gynaecologist


Born 18 October 1872 at Hornsby Gate, Armathwaite, Cumberland, the third son and fourth child of Pearson Hewetson, farmer, of Fenton, Cumberland, and Charlotte Toppin his wife. He was educated at Grosvenor College, Carlisle, at the University of Edinburgh, at King's College Hospital, and at St Bartholomew's Hospital. He served for a time as assistant house physician at the General Hospital, Bristol, and as house physician at the General Hospital, Birmingham, before he went in general practice in Coventry. Being interested in pathological research he received the Mackenzie scholarship and was appointed a British Medical Association research scholar in 1904. In 1903 he was chosen assistant obstetric officer under Dr Thomas Wilson at the Birmingham General Hospital and held office for five years, acting also as gynaecological tutor. He also held appointments in the University of Birmingham, as assistant to the professor of obstetrics and gynaecology and as curator of the gynaecological section of the pathological museum. From 1903 to 1936 he served on the staff of the Birmingham Maternity Hospital, and in 1908 he relinquished his position at the General Hospital to join the staff of the Birmingham and Midland Hospital for Women, a post he held until his death, becoming chairman of the medical board and senior surgeon. He was an original Fellow of the College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, and during the war acted as surgeon to the Hollymoor War Hospital.

He married (1) on 7 July 1901 Bertha, daughter of Edward Wolley, of Accrington; she died in November 1916, leaving two sons and two daughters; (2) on 2 April 1918 Ethel Helena, daughter of Harry Reynolds, of Hartford, Cheshire, who survived him but without children. He died on 19 May 1936, and Mrs Hewetson died on 24 April 1952. Hewetson worthily upheld the tradition of the Birmingham school of gynaecology. As a surgeon he was outstanding, gentle, quick, never flurried, and full of confidence in himself. He was a great lover of sport, particularly football and cricket; he was a member of the committee of the Warwickshire County Cricket Club from 1922 to 1926 and then became a vice-president of the Club.

Syncytioma malignum. Practitioner, 1906, 77, 204.
Multiple myomectomy in pregnancy; labour at term. Bghm med Rev 1908, 64, 55. Branchiogenic papilliferous adenocarcinoma. J Path Bact 1909, 13, 198.
Adrenal hypernephroma in an adult female, associated with male secondary sex characters, with E Glynn. Ibid 1913, 18, 81.

Sources used to compile this entry: [Lancet, 1936, 1, 1327; Brit med J 1936, 1, 1135 with portrait and eulogies; information given by Mrs Hewetson, for whose death see The Times, 28 April 1952].

The Royal College of Surgeons of England