Re: Medical training for MS doctors
I am not sure if there were any medical colleges in Mississippi that existed long enough prior to the war to train Surgeons. By that I mean that physicians may have been trained at the University of Mississippi, but it is unlikely that they could have attained the skills needed to be considered Sugeons because I do not think that the schools existed long enough or that they even existed prior to the war. My understanding is that prior to the mid 1850's there were few medical colleges per se in the Confederate States. The only ones I am aware of were Tulane in New Orleans and the Medical College of Charleston in Charleston, SC. There may have been others in Virginia or Texas, but I am not familiar with them. Most pre-war surgeons were educated at either these two schools, in Philadelphia, other northern cities, and some overseas. That is not to say that men who practiced medicine or were practicing physicians were not trained in Mississippi. My grandfather, Robert C. Bethea, M.D. [2nd Lt. Co. E 7th Regt. Miss. Inf.] completed his medical training at the Medical College of Charleston in 1858. His training included about six months in class and six months in the field with a Prefector and lasted two years. His Prefector was his brother, John Bethea, also an M.D., and his field training was conducted in Mississippi where Uncle John lived. It seems that the field training ocurred during the planting and harvesting time and the classroom training occurred during the non-growing season. After completing his training my grandfather moved to Mississippi in 1859 just prior to the war. During the war and after he practiced medicine, but was not named as a Surgeon or Asst. Surgeon. Other more experienced physicians attained those titles. Hope this has helped.