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Mini Bios of People of Scots Descent
Thomas Cruickshank, M. D. Biography

This biography appears on pages 501-502 in "History of Dakota Territory" by George W. Kingsbury, Vol. IV (1915) 

Dr. Thomas Cruickshank is one of the leading and learned representatives of the medical fraternity in Clay county, South Dakota, who for the past fifteen years has practiced successfully in Vermillion. His birth occurred in Norway on the 17th of June, 1866, his parents being John and Anna (Olson) Cruickshank, the former a native of Scotland. Professor Thomas Cruickshank, the paternal grandfather of our subject, had removed to Norway as a member of the faculty of an agricultural college of that country. John Cruickshank and a brother, Alexander, who is now living in Wisconsin, were graduates of this institution. The former was a scientific farmer and at one period of his life a man of means who devoted much time and money to experiments along agricultural lines, for he loved the soil and was interested in developing its possibilities. In 1894, after having lost two sons and also his fortune, he left Norway and came to the United States, spending the first six years of his residence in this country at Larchwood, Iowa. In 1900 he located in Vermillion, South Dakota, and there made his home with our subject until the time of his demise in 1905. His widow still resides with her son Thomas and has now reached the age of eighty-six years. 

Thomas Cruickshank spent the first twenty years of his life in the land of his nativity and attended the common schools in the acquirement of an education. His father, who had lost his fortune, advised him to emigrate to America, and thus it was that he came to this county in 1886. He made his way to Canton, South Dakota, and during the first winter worked for his board and attended the country schools in order to learn the English language. Mr. Cruickshank subsequently worked his way through Augustana College and afterward attended the Northern Illinois Normal College at Dixon, Illinois, from 
which institution he was graduated with the degree of B. S. in the class of 1894. In that year he went to Beloit, Iowa, and was there identified with the Lutheran Orphanage Asylum for two years, instituting the movement which resulted in securing the farm given to the institution by a Mr. Nelson. In 1896 he went to St. Louis and took up the study of medicine in the medical department of Barnes university, being graduated therefrom with the class of 1899. During the following three months he was located in Woodlawn, Illinois, but did not find the prospects alluring there and consequently removed to Vermillion, South Dakota, where he has remained in practice continuously since. The success and reputation which he now enjoys have come in recognition of his ability to cope with the intricate problems testing the powers of the physician and surgeon. He is a member of the Yankton District Medical Society, of which he has served as vice president and censor, the South Dakota State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. For the past thirteen years he has been a member of the board of insanity examiners of Clay county, and since the establishment of the medical department of the University of South Dakota has been a lecturer in that institution. 

Fraternally Dr. Cruickshank is identified with the Masons, belonging to the following organizations: Incense Lodge, No. 2, A. F. & A. M.; Vermillion Chapter, No. 21, R. A. M.; Vermillion Commandery, No. 16, K. T.; and El Riad Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S. He has likewise been a member of the Vermillion Commercial Club since its organization and is widely recognized as one of the progressive and enterprising residents of the city. In professional and social circles he holds to high standards and enjoys in large measure the confidence and trust of those with whom he is brought in contact in every relation of life.



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