Monday, June 30, 2014

Facts about the doctor who helped bring me into this world (see previous entry)

Google is an amazing thing.  I read something from my past that has a name with it, I look up the name, and there are some facts about that person.  I googled "J. Clark Cooper, Villisca, Iowa" and found these things:

Birth: Jun. 26, 1877
Buchanan County
Iowa, USA
Death: Jun. 8, 1962
Red Oak
Montgomery County
Iowa, USA

Jay Clark Cooper was the son of James and Janetta Cooper. He graduated from Quasqueton High School in 1894 and taught country school for a short time. He entered the Medical College of the State University of Iowa and received his medical degree in 1902.

After graduation he began practice at Defiance, Iowa. On 26 Aug 1902 he married Mary P Moore in Mt. Vernon, Iowa. In 1904 they moved to Villisca, Iowa, and Dr. Cooper continued practice there until 1962. At various times he studied in Chicago, New York, London, and Vienna.

During Dr. Cooper's time in Villisca he delivered over 4000 babies and was the first physician called to the scene of the gruesome Villisca axe murders.

Dr. Cooper and Mary had two children, Dr. Clark N Cooper and Dr. Margaret Cooper. Dr. Cooper died in Red Oak, Iowa, at the age of 84 years.

So he was in his fifties when I was born.  Oh, and I was one of over 4,000 babies he delivered.  He must have been an inspiration to his two children, since both of them became doctors.  The weirdest thing about Dr. Cooper, though, is his connection to the infamous axe murders:  The story can be found online HERE.  Dr. Cooper was the coroner at the time, so when you google his name, the axe murders are the first thing that comes up.  There are pictures included in the article of the house where the people were murdered.  I understand it's a favorite place for ghost hunters.  Last year (or was it two years ago?) we were up that way and ate a picnic lunch in Villisca.  I do wish we had taken the time to tour the house, but I had forgotten all about the story until we were long gone.  

I wouldn't have been looking for ghosts, though.  I don't believe in them.  


Helen said...

Sounds like he was a good doc. The doc who delivered my babies died a couple of weeks ago at the age of 92.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

I know the name of the doctor that delivered me but that is about all I know. You are blessed to have that letter and find out so much about him too. Google is fantastic for so many things.


How fascinating. He was an interesting man, indeed.

Margaret said...

Love the info about him. As you already know, my parents' doc was a family friend, so I already knew a lot about him. My parents always called him "Charlie" and never "Dr. Vaught."