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Each calling or business, if honorable, has its place in the scheme of human existence, constituting a part of the plan whereby life's methods are pursued and man reaches his ultimate destiny. "All are needed by each one," wrote Emerson. The importance of a business, however, is largely determinedly its usefulness. So dependent is man upon his fellow man that the worth of the individual is largely reckoned by what he has done for humanity. There is no class to whom greater gratitude is due than to those self-sacrificing, noble-minded men whose life work has been the alleviation of the burden of suffering that rests on the world, thus lengthening the span of human existence. One of the leading representatives of the medical fraternity in Atchison is Dr. Philip S. Mitchell, who has been an active practitioner in this city for seventeen years. He was born in Salem, Livingston county, Kentucky, February 7, 1854, and on the paternal side is of Scotch-Irish descent. His grandfather was William Mitchell and his father was James Mitchell. The latter was a native of Kentucky and a farmer by occupation. He married Miss Nancy Ann Hutson, a daughter of John Hutson, who was born in Germany.

The Doctor was reared upon a farm in the county of his nativity and was sent to a select school. After acquiring a good English education he engaged in teaching, which profession he followed between the ages of seventeen and twenty-seven years. During that time he took up the study of medicine, completing a course of reading in Salem, Kentucky, after which he entered the Kentucky School of Medicine, where he pursued his first course of lectures. In his native state he engaged in practice until 1882, when he came to Kansas, locating in Cummings. There he remained until 1887, when he came to Atchison, where he has since engaged in general practice. He is now well established in his profession, doing a large business. He is a close student of the science of medicine and keeps thoroughly in touch with the progress that is continually advancing toward perfection. He is a man of broad human sympathies without which success can never be gained in his chosen calling. His knowledge, too, is broad and comprehensive, and he is therefore deserving of the success which has attended his efforts.

In 1879 was celebrated the marriage of Dr. Mitchell and Miss Mary M. Ramage, a daughter of Thomas Ramage. They had been schoolmates together and the friendship thus formed ripened into love as the years passed. Their union has been blessed with six children: Ora B., Judge T., Wade C., Ollie Pearl, Gracie F. and Bertha May.

The Doctor is a member of the Eastern Kansas Medical Society, the Kansas State Medical Society, the American Medical Association and the Atchison Medical Society. In 1885 he was appointed a member of the Atchison board of pension examiners, and in 1896 he was house surgeon in the Kentucky School of Medicine Hospital. In 1897 he went abroad and visited all of the principal hospitals of England, gaining an extended knowledge of the methods there pursued in the treatment of the sick. He has recently established a private infirmary in Atchison of the style of those in the east, and this is now largely occupied by patients who hearing of his skill and ability have come to him for treatment. He was the first physician in this section of the state to use the X-ray in surgery, and his efforts in that direction have been attended with excellent success. He ranks among the most prominent representatives of his calling in this section of Kansas, and the liberal patronage accorded him is well merited. The success which has come to him has enabled him to make investments in property and he is to-day the owner of a fine fruit farm of one hundred acres not far from the city. This is largely planted to apples, and is one of the valued properties of the kind in the community. For four years the Doctor was a member of the city council of Atchison and served as its president. Socially he is connected with the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and enjoys the high regard of all those with whom business and social connections have brought him in contact. He is also connected with the Modern Woodmen of America, Maccabees, National Reserve, Mutual Protective League, and a member of other fraternal insurance societies. He has a just appreciation of the importance of his profession, and his devotion to the demands which is made upon him has resulted in gaining him marked prestige in connection with the medical fraternity of northeastern Kansas.