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H. L. CHANEY, M. D.
By DR. R. M. DENIG
Between pages 452-453
There is nothing, perhaps, which so clearly indicates the character and intelligence of a community as its ability to discriminate between charlatanry and pretension in the medical profession and sloid, real merit. Nor is there anything which tends more to strengthen and develop the native resources of a physician, and prompt him to arm and equip himself with the vast resources of his profession than this confidence of which we speak, when extended to him by the thinking and influential part of the community, in which he has chosen to practice his ministration.
In this respect Dr. H. L. Chaney has been singularly fortunate. It has fallen to the lot of few physicians, in rural districts, to enjoy a more unbounded and entire confidence than has been granted him by his extensive and intelligent clientelle. Nor has this confidence been misplaced, or without its effect upon its worthy recipient; it has stimulated him to ceaseless activity, to intense and exhaustive study, and unrelaxing exertions to meet the severe demand made on his time and services.
We offer, then, no apology for giving in the records and history of this county a brief notice of one who has responded so nobly to the claims of an arduous and honorable profession, and ever exerted an elevating influence in social life. The history of a county or State is made up of the history of its individual members, and none are more worthy of notice in its pages than the high-toned, honorable physician, who has attained a well-merited and extensive reputation.
Dr. H. L. Chaney, son of John and Mary Chaney, was born August 20, 1820, in Fairfield county, Ohio. He assisted his father on the farm during the summer, and in the winter he enjoyed the advantages and privileges of the district school. This, with a subsequent two and a half years spent at the academy of Greenfield--supplemented by one year as a teacher in the district school, embraces all the facilities he enjoyed for acquiring a preliminary education. Limited, however, as were these opportunities, the doctor entered upon his professional studies with as much preparation as the ordinary run of medical students, and with an ardent love for, and enthusiastic devotion to, the calling he had chosen.
His preceptor was the amiable and accomplished Dr. George E. Eels, late of Lithopolis, whose urbanity of manner, widely extended knowledge, as well as ability and skill, will long be remembered both by his professional brethren and the community in which he resided.
During the three years spent in the office of Dr. Eels, part of which time he was able to take a considerable share in the practice, Dr. Chaney attended two full and two preliminary courses of lectures at Ohio Medical college, Cincinnati, and graduated with honor in February, 1847.
In the summer of the same year, he commenced practice in Lockbourne, Franklin county, and in March, 1848, he was married to Miss Mary Mook, daughter of Thomas Mook, esq., of New York city, and shortly after, removed to his present place of residence, Groveport.
This was the doctor's second marriage--his first wife, Miss Mary Cunningham, to who he was wedded before commencing the study of medicine, having died during the first year of their wedded life, and leaving no children. Four of his second wife's children are now living.
In politics, as in medicine, the doctor's position has always been sharply defined--Democratic to the core. In 1858 he was chosen a member of the State legislature, and served two sessions. Althoughhis constituents would have had no difficulty in again returning him as a member, or giving him any office in the county he may have desired, his political aspirations seem to have culminated, and he returned to his first love--his profession, resuming its duties with increased energy and zeal.
Dr. Chaney was a member of the old State Medical convention, when the present State Medical society which grew out of it, was organized, and has been an active member of the latter ever since. He is also a member of the Columbus Academy of Medicine, and of the Columbus Pathological society.
For the past two or three years the doctor's impaired health has greatly impeded his performance of active duty, and yet under all his afflictions, and knowing but too well the gravity of his troubles, his mind has always been clear, and his judgment sound, and even with his wasted strength, his indomitable will has enabled him to perform an amount of active labor, from which many a sound and healthy city doctor would shrink.