Biographical Sketch of Dr. George Gideon Woods
January 7, 1878 – June 8, 1958
Dr. George Gideon Woods of Sebastian County was born January 7, 1878 in Logan Co., AR, and died June 9, 1958 in Hackett, Sebastian Co., AR at the age of 80, serving as a doctor in Arkansas for more than a half-century.
His parents were John Samuel Woods, a farmer, and his wife, the former Mary Jane Shuler. A sister, Minnie M., was born in 1879. His mother passed away February 25, 1883 when he was 5 years old. His father remarried December 3, 1884. There were four half-sisters and two half-brothers to come.
His grandfather, Gideon Woods of Bonaza, AR, was a Civil War veteran of Confederate forces.
Dr. Woods graduated from The University of Arkansas Medical School in 1904, being licensed in 1903. “He began practicing medicine In Huntington in 1904, riding horseback to mining camps to care for local patients. While the mines safety measures went virtually ignored, men were injured almost daily, with Dr. Woods providing the care they needed in their home.”1
During that same year of 1904, he married Sara Alice Edwards on April 28 at the home of the bride’s parents. They were to become the parents of two children, a son, William Merle Woods and a daughter, Susan Natalie Woods.
In 1909 he bought a car, a Hupmobile, which caused a distraction when
he would pass by, and everyone would stop what they were doing to stare at it.
“In his career, Dr. Woods delivered over 3,000 babies and told of epidemics of Malaria, Typhoid and Pneumonia. He also said he caught Mumps from one of his patients. But one of the saddest memories was the smallpox epidemic of 1903.
In 1934 his son, Merle Woods, completed his internship and started practice with him. Dr. Woods said that was one of the happiest days of his life.”2
Dr. Woods was a Mason belonging to Paragould Lodge, No. 368, F.&AM, and the Paragould Chapter Royal Arch Masons. He was also a member of Paragould Lodge No. 1080, Benevolent Protective order of Elks. He served as City Health Officer of Huntington for several years, and on the examining board of District 2 in World War I.
“Dr. Woods, physician for over half a century, one of the oldest practicing physicians, died Sunday night at his home after a short illness. Last rites were held at Mountain View cemetery near Hackett.”3
1 Huntington Arkansas – Historical Archive
2 Physicians and Medicine, Crawford and Sebastian Counties, Arkansas 1817-1916, pp 636-637
3 Southwest American, Fort Smith, Arkansas, June 12, 1958, p. 22
Steven L. Pinkerton February 18, 2023