Dr. William Hubert (Daddy Doc) Moreland
Dr. William Hubert Moreland was born in Brookland, Craighead County, Arkansas, on 8 November 1886, the son
of Dr. Silas Woodard Moreland (1851-1929) and Mary
Charlsey Cole (1862-1936).
He received a diploma from the Woodland College in
Jonesboro in 1908,1
and went from there to the Eclectic
Medical Institute of Cincinnati in 1909. He earned his medical degree from there in May 1913. His thesis was “The
Induction of Anesthesia in Children.”2
His father, Dr. Silas Woodard Moreland, practiced medicine in Jonesboro, Craighead County, Arkansas. The older
Dr. Moreland was born in Clinton County, Missouri, and
there witnessed first hand the violence of the Civil War:
His brother Tandy Moreland was killed in his presence by
Southern sympathizers after the war was over, in December 1865. Because of this incident, Dr. Silas Woodard Moreland was a conscientious objector, so the story goes. He
was most certainly a Republican. Because of his political
views, the older Dr. Moreland deeply disapproved of the entry of the United States into World War I and
was whipped in the streets in Jonesboro for his outspokenness.
So it could not have been a comfort to his father when the young Dr. William Hubert Moreland was drafted in January 1918. At the time he was practicing medicine in Hickory Ridge, Cross County, Arkansas,
where he met his future wife, Monte Arie Howell, who was there teaching music.3
During this time, in
June 1918, the younger Dr. Moreland attended the National Eclectic Medical Association convention in
Cincinnati, in uniform, along with his father. Dr. Silas Woodard Moreland and his son Dr. William Hubert
Moreland went to many annual meetings of the National Eclectic Medical Association, and presented
papers that were subsequently published in the association’s quarterlies.4
After being drafted early in 1918, the younger Dr. Moreland went to Chanute Field, Rantoul, Illinois,
where he trained with the 267th Aero Squadron. He was a 1st Lieutenant. He replaced 1st Lieutenant
Ross D. Wright as Medical Officer on July 9, 1918. He arrived with the 267th Aero Squadron in Garden
City, New Jersey, on June 18, 1918, then was moved to Babylon, New York, on June 24, 1918, then
back to Garden City on July 11. On July 12 he was formally assigned as Medical Officer. Three days
later, on July 15, 1918, he and the 267th Aero Squadron arrived in Garden City, New Jersey, to await
transport to Boston. From Boston the 267th Aero Squadron boarded the ship Winifredian and set out
for Avonmouth, England, on July 16, 1918. They arrived in England August 1, 1918. As an officer, Dr.
Moreland sailed first class.
On August 5 the 267th Aero Squadron arrived at their base at New Romney, Kent, England, having
passed through the Rest Camp at Winchester. They worked on the Bristol, Sopwith Scout, and Avro
airplanes, and spent 4 months training. By November 5, 1918, the squadron was ready for active
duty. The war ended November 11; the 267th was never activated. In December 1918 the 267th Aero
Squadron sailed back to the United States on the Mauritania from Liverpool and arrived in New York
December 21, 1918.5
Dr. Moreland never talked about his military service.
While awaiting his train home from New York, Dr. Moreland purchased a ring at Tiffany’s for his fiancée,
Monte Arie Howell. They were married 17 June 1919 in Nettleton, Craighead County, Arkansas, and
they moved to the new town of Tyronza, in Poinsett County, where he set up a country medical practice,
the Moreland Clinic. They lived in Tyronza rest of their lives. His office was next door to his house.
Dr. Moreland was a founding member of the First Baptist Church of Tyronza, and a faithful supporter of
that church all his life. He served there as a deacon, chairman of the building committee in 1927, and
other offices. He was on the Board of Directors of Southern Baptist College, Walnut Ridge, Arkansas.
Dr. Moreland was a 32nd degree Mason, a Shriner, a member of the Rotary Club, and a member of the
Arkansas Association for Retired Persons. He was a Republican, a rare thing in Poinsett County. He
served as Postmaster for Tyronza, Poinsett County, Arkansas, from 1921 to 1933, under Republican
Presidents Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover.
Dr. Moreland’s practice was very much a country practice. While Dr. Moreland had a clinic, next door
to his home, he did much of his medical practice in homes. He employed one nurse, Suzy Morgan, toward the end of his practice. He had an assistant during his later years, Willie (Twenty-One) Chandler,
who did everything short of practicing medicine, including driving Dr. Moreland when he went on house
calls and keeping the clinic in working order. When patients came to the office while he was out making
house calls, they were greeted by his wife, Monte Arie Howell Moreland (daughter of country physician
Dr. John Chrisenberry Howell), or one of his three daughters, or nurse Suzy Morgan, or Twenty-One
Chandler. In 1956, Dr. Moreland estimated he had delivered over 5,000 babies, and was at the time
serving third generations as a family physician.6
His daughter, Mary Carolyn Moreland Terry, remembers that he charged $15 for a delivery or, if the family was poor, he accepted payment in chickens or
farm produce.
Dr. Moreland never turned down a patient. He served everyone in Poinsett County, and served them
equally. He never hesitated to make a house call to the humblest of sharecroppers. He purchased medicines at Bristol-Myers in Memphis and often gave these to patients on credit so they would not have to
go to a distant pharmacy. After Dr. Moreland’s retirement, his grandson Rex Moreland Terry drove him
to Gilmore, Marked Tree, Lepanto, and points in between as he tried to collect from people who were
not able to pay him. Rex does not think he really wanted to collect the money, but it lifted his spirits to
see his beloved former patients again.
Dr. Moreland called his wife Mrs. Moreland and she called him Dr. Moreland. But to his daughters and
later his grandchildren Dr. Moreland was known as Daddy Doc.
Dr. Moreland had originally planned to stay in Tyronza only long enough to become financially secure,
then he and his family would move to a larger town, perhaps Jonesboro or Memphis. In his country
practice, he became adept at some small surgeries: hemorrhoid and hernia repairs. A friend and family
practice physician in Memphis hoped he would move there and specialize in these procedures. However, a family tragedy made the Morelands believe they would be serving God to stay in Poinsett County.
Their third daughter, Patricia Jean, died of malaria in September 1928 at the age of fourteen months.
In dealing with the grief, they concluded their service service in Tyronza was missionary service. And
so they stayed.7
Dr. Moreland’s wife, Monte Arie Howell, died on Easter Sunday, 1960, from a heart attack, at the
age of 66. Dr. Moreland died 19 October 1969 in North Little Rock, Arkansas, at the age of 82. He
had retired from his Tyronza practice in 1965. He practiced medicine for 51 years, 46 of those years
in Tyronza. He was a member of the American Medical Association, the Arkansas Medical Association, the Craighead-Poinsett Medical Association, and, in his earlier years, the Eclectic Medical
Association. He published several articles in the Eclectic Medical Journal.
Biography prepared by Ginger Ashcraft Terry, April 2020.