Since 1904 Dr. Gibson has been identified with Louisville as a practicing
physician and surgeon, and he has continued to merit in this city the same
high reputation which was his in the other localities that claimed his
attention before settling here. Since his graduation in 1878 he has confined
his medical practice to Clay county, Illinois, with the exception of his
first two years of experience, which he spent in Indiana, and he is
recognized today as the oldest practicing physician in Clay county. He is
regarded as a diagnostician of exceptional ability, and his success in his
chosen profession has been of a generous nature, proving most conclusively
the wisdom of the choice he made in early youth.
Dr. Elijah P. Gibson was born in New Providence, Indiana, June 10, 1850, and he is the son of Jesse and Nancy (Peyton). The father was a son of William Gibson, a native of North Carolina, who came to Indiana in his young manhood and where he passed the remainder of his life. He was a colonel in the state militia, and was a man of considerable position in his time. His son Jesse was born in Indiana in the year 1812, and on reaching his majority embarked upon a farming career in Clark county Indiana, where he achieved distinctive success during the years which he devoted to those interests. In later life he moved to Unionville, Iowa, where he passed away. He was a member of the Christian church and was a staunch adherent of the Democratic party. His son, Elijah P., received his early schooling in the schools of Mitchell, following his graduation from which he entered the Hospital College of Medicine at Louisville Kentucky. He was graduated therefrom on February 26, 1878, and began the practice of his profession in Mitchell, Indiana, where he remained for two years. Thereafter his entire practice has been confined to Clay county, his identity with that locality beginning in 1880, when he settled at Hoosier Prairie. He practiced in that town until 1904, his advent into Louisville occurring then, and here he has made his headquarters ever since. In his college career he gave especial attention to his studies in the dissecting room, prolonging them two years beyond the requirements, and, as mentioned previously, is known as a specialist in diagnosis. When Dr. Gibson began practice he possessed nothing but his training and his ambition and will to succeed. That these possessions were all sufficient to tide him through the lean years of his career, his later years give ample evidence. His accomplishments have been worthy and his name is a synonym for conscientious consideration and honesty in all his dealings with his fellow creatures.
The Gibson family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and Dr. Gibson is a member of the Masonic fraternity. He is affiliated with the Chapter, the Knights Templar, and has taken the thirty-second degree in Masonry. He was treasurer for a number of years in the blue lodge and has served as high priest of the Chapter. He is a member of the County, State and American Medical Associations. The Doctor has always been a Republican of strong views, and he has taken a great interest in the success of the party.
On May 19, 1886, Dr. Gibson married Miss Jencie Burton, the daughter of E. Burton, of Mitchell, Indiana. He was a native of North Carolina, who came to Indiana in his young days, there passing the remainder of his life. Four children were born to Dr. and Mrs. Gibson: Paul W., a student in college at Lebanon, Illinois; Catherine, in the parental home and attending school in Louisville; Burton P. and Nellie Jencie, also at home attending school. The family reside in the fine old homestead which was once the property of ex-governor John R. Tanner.
Extracted 09 Nov 2018 by Norma Hass from History of Southern Illinois, by George W. Smith, published in 1912, volume 3, pages 1271-1272.