- A dictionary of medical eponyms

George Walter Caldwell

Born  1867
Died  1946

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American physician, writer and painter, born 1867, Lincoln, Vermont; died 1946, Hollywood, California.

Biography of George Walter Caldwell

George Walter Caldwell, painter, writer and physician, was the son of a farmer and the family lived in rather humble conditions. He worked his way through the studies at the University of Colorado and the University of Denver, graduating at the latter in 1891. He then left for New York, where he accepted the first position offered, at the New York Polyclinic. He remained here, mostly by chance, being interested in rhinology and laryngology, a new specialty in the USA.

He constructed a particular probe for treatment of constrictures of the lacrimal duct and in 1893 described his method for emptying the sinus maxilaris of an abscess and then arranging a drainage to the nasal cavity. All his written medical works were published within three years of his graduation.

In the beginning of 1900 Caldwell journeyed to San Fransisco to commence a position at the Stanford University. He remained there until 1926, moving to Los Angeles. After his arrival in California Caldwell had become more interested in literature and the arts. As a resident of Hollywood, he exhibited his paintings locally but also traveled worldwide and wrote several books about Indians. He was a member of the California Art Club.

He collected folktales and published "Legends of Southern California", 1925. He painted and published a collection of poems titled "Meditations of a Medico", in which he expresses his philosophy of life.

    "Our lives are like mountain streams that leap with boundless latent power down the steep, unless w know and use our latent powers we waste in wishful thinking precious hours, and fortune knocks - and passes while we sleep."
    From Meditations of a Medico.


  • Legends of Southern California. Illustrated by Jane Jefferson Flippin.
    San Francisco: Phillips & Van Orden Co., 1919. 101 pages.
  • Ghost Stories of the California Missions and Rhymes of the Gypsy Trail.
    Hollywood, George W. Caldwell, 1939. Illustrations by George F. Mason.
  • Meditations of a Medico. Hollywood, A. L. Caldwell, 1939.
    New edition: House-Warven, Publishers, Hollywood, 1952. Biographical:
  • Tomas Gejrot:
    George Caldwell och Henri Luc: Införde radikalare kirurgisk teknikk för utrymning av abscesser i käkhålan.
    Läkartidningen, Stockholm, 1991, 88 (1-2): 45.
    In the series: Mannen bakom syndromet [The Man Behind the Syndrome].

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