Tecumseh Kingsley Holmes, one of the leading physicians and surgeons of Kent County, Ontario, is a son of Abraham and Jane Louisa (Gibson) Holmes, and was born at Euphemia, County of Kent, January 17, 1839. His father, many years a farmer, is still living, being in his 84th year. The family is of Irish descent, the great grandfather of our subject coming over when the father of Abraham Holmes was a child, and settling at Montreal. The grandfather of our subject, on reaching manhood, removed to Sandwich, Upper Canada, and was there Principal of an Academy many years. The Gibsons were United Empire Loyalists. The mother of Tecumseh was a granddaughter of General Gates, who fought on the side of the colonies.
In his younger years our subject prepared himself in the public schools of his native country, and by private study, for an instructor, and taught five years. He studied medicine with Drs. Wallen and Askin of Chatham; attended lectures in the Medical Department of the Michigan State University, Ann Arbor, in 1864; the next year was graduated M. D. at Long Island College Hospital, Brooklyn; a year later at the College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York, and at Victoria University, Ontario,1867. While in New York, Dr. Holmes also took private lessons in surgery of Dr. Frank Hastings Hamilton, of Bellevue Hospital Medical College, one of the most eminent surgeons in the United States; and in auscultation and percussion of Dr. Austin Flint, senior, of the same college, and the best writer on theory and practice of medicine in that country.
With the best of preparations for his practice, both in medicine and surgery, Dr. Holmes opened an office at Chatham in May, 1867, and has been one of the most successful men in his profession in Western Ontario. He makes a specialty of nothing, but has given a good deal of attention to the diseases of women and children. His whole time and energies are devoted to his profession in its several branches, and his standing is excellent. He has, from the start, been an active member of the Western and St. Clair Medical Association, and was a delegate from it to the International Medical Congress Centennial of the United States held at Philadelphia in 1876. On that occasion he prepared and read a paper on the “Management of Convulsions in Children, depending upon a High Temperature of the Body,” which paper was published in the transactions of that Congress. He has also prepared for the same local association, several papers, which have been published in its transactions. He is, likewise, quite active in educational matters, occasionally lecturing before teachersconventions.
Dr. Holmes is Surgeon of the 24th Battalion Volunteer Infantry, and has held one or two offices in the corporation of Chatham, but evidently has no aspirations in that direction, as civil offices would necessarily interfere with his very remunerative practice. He is a decided and earnest Reformer, and has been urged by his political confreres to stand as a candidate for the Provincial Parliament, but has steadfastly refused to let his name be used in a nominating convention.
He is a member of the Church of England, and much interested in religious progress and moral reforms, being an ardent supporter of the temperance cause, and frequently and zealously advocating it on public occasions. He was the first Worthy Chief of the first Lodge of Good Templars in Kent County.
The Doctor has been married since January 23, 1873, his wife being Mary E., daughter of Thomas H. Taylor, of Chatham. They have two boys.