“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Edom in Rockingham County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

Dr. Jessee Bennett


Dr. Jessee Bennett Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 2, 2010
1. Dr. Jessee Bennett Marker
Inscription. Near Edom, Virginia, on January 14, 1794, in a heroic effort to save his wife, Elizabeth, and child, Dr. Jessee Bennett performed the first successful Caesarian section and oophorectomy to be done in America.
Erected 1983 by the Linville-Edom Extension Homemaker’s Club, Rockingham County, and the Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission. (Marker Number A-59.)
Location. 38° 31.367′ N, 78° 51.7′ W. Marker is near Edom, Virginia, in Rockingham County. Marker is on Harpine Highway (Virginia Route 42) near Jesse Bennet Way (County Route 859), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Linville VA 22834, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 5 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Breneman-Turner Mill (approx. ¾ mile away); Baxter House (approx. 2.7 miles away); Lincoln's Virginia Ancestors (approx. 2.9 miles away); Old Salem Church (approx. 3½ miles away); Joseph Funk (approx. 3.6 miles away); Newtown Cemetery (approx. 4.8 miles away); Edgar Amos Love (approx. 4.8 miles away); Cavalry Engagement (approx. 5 miles away).
Also see . . .  The Doctor that History Almost Missed. “The
Dr. Jessee Bennett Marker image. Click for full size.
By J. J. Prats, May 2, 2010
2. Dr. Jessee Bennett Marker
only two things that could be done was either a Caesarian or a Creanitorian operation. Mrs. Bennett felt that either would be death for her, but that the life of the baby might be saved by a Caesarian Operation, so she begged for them to try to save the baby’s life, even if she had to die. So it was up to the young doctor, husband, and father, to decide what to do. Remembering his resolution when he first hung out his shingle, ‘that he would attend the sick, in good or bad weather, night or day, rich or poor, and do all he could to relieve pain and aches.’ In an instant his decision was made, save both if possible, and he would.

“A crude operating table was made, by bringing in two barrels, and placing two boards on them for a table. Mrs. Bennett was given a large dose of laudanum, to make her sleepy, and then she was placed on the operating table, with her sister, Mrs. Hawkins, by her side holding a tallow candle for a light, and two faithful negro servants to hold Mrs. Bennett on the table.

“Then young Dr. Bennett, with one long sweep of the knife, laid open the abdomen of his wife, and removed the baby. The wound was then closed by sewing it with stout linen thread, such as was used in the pioneer home to sew heavy clothing. Much to the surprise of every one, both mother and baby lived. Thirty-six years later, April 20th, 1830, the mother died, and was laid to rest a short distance from Riverview, the home she loved so well.” (Submitted on May 4, 2010.) 
Additional keywords. cesarean section, C-section, ovariectomy
Categories. Science & Medicine
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on May 4, 2010, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio. This page has been viewed 947 times since then and 40 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on May 4, 2010, by J. J. Prats of Powell, Ohio.
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