Half of a husband/wife doctor team, Dr. William Nelson Hardman was born in Hamilton, Ontario on the 26th of March, 1906. He was the 3rd of 4 children born to William Hardman and the former Georgina Alice Feaver. His father worked at the textile mill in Hamilton and his siblings were; Leslie, Wilfred and Alice. He was educated in the Hamilton and Grimsby Public School system. He graduated high school from Hamilton Collegiate Institute.
Dr. Hardman went to medical school at The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine and graduated M.D. in 1931. He interned at the Hamilton General Hospital from 1931 to 1932.
It was at The University of Toronto, where Dr. Hardman met his future wife, Dr. Anna Bella Beattie. They were medical students together and were married in Guelph on the 29th of June, 1932. Dr. Anna Bella (Beattie) Hardman was born in Guelph on the 25th of April, 1906, the daughter of Walter Hammond Beattie and the former Tena Thatcher. She was the eldest of 4 children. Her father was a pharmacist in Guelph and her siblings were; Bruce, Mary and Martha.
Dr. and Dr. Hardman set up a medical practice in Chatham and were prominent physicians in the city from 1932 to 1943. In 1935, Dr.Hardman’s office was located at 219 King Street West in Chatham. Dr. Hardman was elected to the Chatham Board of Education in 1938 and served as the Vice Chairman. Dr. Hardman was a member of the Kent Club and the Victory A.F. and A.M. Lodge. Dr. Hardman was Chief of Staff at the Public General Hospital from 1940 to 1942. According to the 1941 Shepherds City of Chatham Business Directory, Dr. William and Dr. Anna Hardman’s office was located at 42 Sixth Street.
Dr. Hardman was a 32nd degree Mason. His hobbies included bowling, golf and bridge. Dr. William and Dr. Anna Hardman had 3 children; a daughter Jane Anna and two sons, William and Nathaniel (who died as a young child).
Dr. William Hardman enlisted in the Navy on the 12th of June, 1942. At the time of his enlistment he resided at 106 William Street North in Chatham. He served in the R.C.N.V.R. from 1942-1943 holding the rank of Surgeon-Lieutenant. During his absence, his wife took over his medical patients.
In 1943 the couple packed up and moved to Rochester, Minnesota. From 1943 to 1946, Dr. Hardman held a fellowship in anesthesiology at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. In 1946 Dr. Hardman obtained a Masters of Sc. from the University of Minnesota. (It should be noted Dr. Anna Hardman held a fellowship in anesthesiology at the Mayo Clinic from 1944 to 1946.) The following year, Dr. Hardman became board certified in anesthesia by the Canadian College. In 1948 he became a diplomat of the American Board of anesthesiology.
From 1946-1948 Dr. William Hardman was Professor of Anesthesia at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. During this period of time, he was also Chief of Anesthesia at St. Joseph’s Hospital. Dr. Hardman’s practice is listed in the 1948 Omaha Nebraska City Directory. It lists his address as 1016 S. 38th Street.
A brilliant career was cut short with the death of Dr. Hardman on the 28th of May, 1952 at the age of 46. Dr. Hardman was buried at Woodlawn Memorial Park Cemetery in Guelph, Ontario. Mrs. Hardman died in London on the 22nd of April, 2000 and she was also buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in Guelph.
*Dr. William Nelson Hardman is also featured on the Gathering Our Heroes website.