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Mini Bios of People of Scots Descent
W. N. Stewart, M. D.


W. N. Stewart, M. D., is a well-known physician and planter of West Feliciana parish. He is a native of Mississippi and was born in Hinds county, May 16, 1853. He is a son of James D., a native of Wilkinson county, and Amanda (Yerger) Stewart, a native of Warren county, Miss. The mother of our subject is now deceased and his father is a resident of Jackson, Miss. James D. Stewart is an influential and well-known citizen of the last-named place. He is of Scotch descent, his paternal great-grandfather, James Stewart, having been a fugitive from Scotland to South Carolina in 1745. After residing for some time in that state he removed to Tennessee, of which state he was one of the first settlers, and did his full share in the development of the section in which he lived. His son James was born on his plantation in Tennessee, was there reared and educated and followed the calling of his father, being a planter for the most part of his life. His efforts were rewarded by substantial success, and his latter days were spent in the enjoyment of a comfortable competency. He died while on a visit to his sons in Mississippi, about the year 1856. His son, William, the father of James D. Stewart, was also born in Tennessee, but about 1805 he came to Mississippi, and, like his father, became a planter. He became very wealthy, and died in 1835. Col. James D. Stewart was born in Mississippi in 1824 and was educated in the University of Virginia, graduating from this institution in 1844, after which he began the study of law at Cambridge. On returning to Mississippi, he began the battle of life as a planter of Wilkinson county, and in 1850 was married to Miss Amanda Yerger, a daughter of George S. Yerger, and about 1852 moved to Hinds county. Three years later he took up his abode in Jackson and practiced law for some time. In 1863 he entered the confederate army as chief of ordnance for Mississippi, receiving his appointment from the governor, and held this position until the close of the war. He is a veteran of the Mexican war also, having served during the conflict in Company B, Jefferson Davis' regiment. Although the Colonel has never been an office seeker, yet he has been prominent in the affairs of his section, and the people of Wilkinson county early showed their appreciation of his ability by electing him to the lower house of the state legislature, in which body he was an active member during 1849. In 1879 he was elected to the state senate from Hinds county, discharging his duties in 1880, and during that year he introduced bills which became laws, one being an act to prevent prize fighting, and another for the prevention of cruelty to animals, both of which were wise and humane measures. In 1878 he was elected president of the Howard association, soon after the organization of that society, and was one of its most useful members during the yellow-fever epidemic of 1878. In 1885 he was appointed registrar of the United States land office at Jackson, which position he ably filled for four years. He is the father of nine children, five of whom are now living: George Yerger, a druggist; William N., our subject; Nolan, who was physician for the Indians of Arizona, having received his appointment from the government and is now assistant physician of the insane asylum at Jackson, Miss., and Ida, who is the wife of Percy Lemly, of Jackson; Warren was assassinated at Arcola, Washington county, Miss., in 1889; Fulton died in 1879; Amanda is with her father in Jackson; two sons died in infancy. Colonel Stewart lives in a beautiful residence on Fortification street in Jackson, Miss., and although he has reached the allotted age of three-score years and tea, he shows little of the ravages of time and is remarkably will preserved.

W. N. Stewart, our subject, was reared in Jackson, Miss., and educated in the common schools, and when old enough attended school at New Orleans and later a medical school in Louisville, Ky., where he graduated in 1876. He commenced the practice of his profession in Jackson, La., where he remained for two years. At the end of that time he came to West Feliciana parish and settled in the Tunica Hills settlement, where he engaged in the practice of medicine and in planting. He owns a fine tract of land near Row Landing. Dr. Stewart was married to Miss Ida Heath, the daughter of John T. and Harriet L. (Perkins) Heath, natives of Louisiana. John T. Heath is now deceased, and was a man of considerable learning, having graduated with the highest honors of his class when but seventeen years of age, at Centenary college, and was an attorney. He was in the same class with Judges Kilbourne and Keman and Rev. C. G. Andrews, D. D., and other noted graduates of this college. He died at the early age of thirty. Though so young, there was no lawyer of north Louisiana who had a larger practice, or whose legal opinions were more valued, and had he lived he would have undoubtedly stood in the foremost rank of his profession. His death occurred at Shreveport. His paternal ancestors were of English descent, having removed from England to Virginia some time during 1700 and something. His grandfather, Thomas Heath, was adopted at an early age by a wealthy old bachelor, Uncle Ethel Heath, of South Carolina, and there made his home. His father, J. T. Heath Sr., upon coming of age removed with his slaves to St. Landry parish, La., purchased a plantation, and there lived until the time of his death. The wife of Dr. Stewart was reared in East Feliciana parish and at Shreveport. La., and was educated at Silliman Collegiate institute, of Clinton, La. She was the eldest child in a family of seven, of whom four are living: Thomas W. Heath is a merchant at Pattersonville, La.; Sally N. is the wife of George Petrie, of Baldwin, La.; Anna McW. is the wife of S. L. McBee, of East Feliciana parish; Dr. John P. died in this parish in 1878, of yellow fever (after the epidemic his name was found on the roll of honor in all the medical journals of the United States, and none more worthy, for though the only physician in his section, and almost an entire stranger, he gave his life for those who scarcely knew him); Henry P. died in East Feliciana parish in 1891; and Mary died at the age of five years. To Dr. and Mrs. Stewart have been born two daughters: Amanda and Irene. The Doctor is a member of the Episcopal church, and his wife is connected with the Baptist church. Our subject is strongly opposed to the lottery company, and is president of the league for the Seventh and Eighth wards. He affiliates with the democratic party. Most of his time is devoted to the practice of his profession and he is regarded as one of the leading physicians of his vicinity. He is the medical examiner for the Pacific Mutual Life Insurance company, of California. Socially, he is a member of the Masonic lodge.

Biographical and Historical Memoires of Louisiana, (vol. 2), pp. 407-408. Published by the Goodspeed Publishing Company, Chicago, 1892.


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