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November 22, 1985

Quest for the Grave of Dr Nathaniel Chapman

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Jefferson Medical College, Thomas Jefferson University, Philadelphia.

JAMA. 1985;254(20):2946-2947. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360200098038

AT THE November 1984 meeting of the Francis C. Wood Institute of the History of Medicine in the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, Dr Wood expressed interest in finding the grave of Dr Nathaniel Chapman. The latter had been the first president of the AMA in 1847.1 As professor of the Practice of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, founder of the Philadelphia Medical Institute, president of the American Philosophical Society, and first editor of what became the American Journal of the Medical Sciences, he exerted a profound influence on the medical education and clinical practice of his era.2-5 By coincidence, Dr Wood took care of a patient by the name of Ardenia Chapman from 1947 until her death in 1975 (Philadelphia Inquirer, Feb 5, 1975, p 8-B). She was a lineal descendent who remembered that Dr Chapman had been buried in St Stephen's Episcopal Church at