Dr. Reginald White Rutherford was born on the 21st of September, 1880 in Chatham, Ontario. He was the second son, born to Dr. James Page Rutherford and the former Mary Ann Dunlop. Dr. Rutherford had an older brother named James Warren Rutherford. He had an older sister named Bertha who died in 1874 at the age of 3. Bertha was the daughter of his father and his fathers first wife, Jennie Dunlop, who was a sister to his mother. (Jennie Dunlop died in 1871, 10 days after the birth of her daughter). The Rutherford family lived in a large mansion located at 243 Wellington Street in Chatham.
Dr. Reginald White Rutherford received his early schooling in Chatham. He attended Chatham Collegiate Institute before attending The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine. He graduated M.B. from the Faculty of Medicine in 1902. He was a member of the Nu Sigma Nu Medical Fraternity. According to the 1928 Ontario Medical Register, Dr. Rutherford joined the College of Physicians and Surgeons on the 2nd of July, 1903. After completing medical school, Dr. Rutherford received specialized training in Eye, Ear, Nose and Throat and started a practice in Chatham. An article appeared in the May 5th, 1904 edition of the Chatham Daily Planet announcing that Dr. Rutherford had joined his father and his brother in their medical practice.
On the 5th of March, 1918 he was married to Caroline Millicent Newcomb in Detroit, Michigan. At the time of her marriage, Mrs. Rutherford was a stenographer. She was born in Blenheim on the 14th of October, 1896 the youngest of 4 children born to Moses Newcomb and the former Sarah Collar. Her father was a sawyer. Her siblings were; William Henry, Chloe May and Lavina Myrtle.
After their marriage, Dr. and Mrs. Rutherford lived in Detroit, while Dr. Rutherford, completed some medical courses. After completing his courses, Dr. and Mrs. Rutherford returned to Chatham. Dr. Rutherford’s medical practice is listed at 102 Wellington Street in the Vernon City of Chatham Business Directory in the years 1920 through 1924. Their daughter Mildred Rutherford, was born and died on the 6th of December, 1923 at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Chatham. She was buried at Maple Leaf Cemetery (Chatham).
Dr. Rutherford died on January 14th, 1925 at the age of 44 years. He was chatting with the owner of the Tecumseh Oil and Gasoline Station at the corner of Wellington and Centre Street in Chatham, when he had a heart attack. He was buried in the Mausoleum at Maple Leaf Cemetery. After his death, his son Reginald White Rutherford Jr. was born on the 17th of June, 1925.
Mrs. Rutherford married Warren Rockwell. She died in Ventura, California on the 1st of June, 1983.
Note: Reginald White Rutherford Jr. also became a physician, specializing in cardiology. He practiced medicine in Toronto. He married Eleanor Hanna Dickson of Toronto and they had 5 children….the eldest one was named Reginald.
*His father Dr. James Page Rutherford and his brother Dr. James Warren Rutherford also appear on the Chatham-Kent Physician Tribute website.