James Smith Wallen 
Location served:
Chatham, Dresden, Morpeth, Ridgetown  
Years in Practice:
1833 to 1863
Area of Specialization:
Surgeon and Family Medicine  


Dr. James Smith Wallen was born in Kingston, Jamaica in August  of 1809.  Dr. Wallen was the only son of Major Edward Pinnock Wallen and the former Eliza Archangel Mill.  Dr. Wallen’s maternal grandfather commanded Fort Detroit after it was captured by the British.  When Dr. Wallen was 5 years old, he and his mother went to live in Scotland and in 1833 Dr. Wallen graduated from the Royal College of Surgeons in England. He continued his medical studies in Paris and afterwards practiced medicine for a short period of time in England.  Dr. Wallen was dispatched to Canada in 1834 during a Cholera outbreak. He was appointed a government surgeon in the 1837 rebellion.

Dr. Wallen married Mary Teeple who resided in Ancaster, Ontario.  Mrs. Wallen was born in Glanford Township, Ontario in 1826.  She was the eldest child of Jacob Teeple and the former Rachel Roszel.  Her parents were farmers and her siblings were; Abraham, Catherine, Elizabeth, Philip, James, Naomi and Edward.

Dr. and Mrs. Wallen had a daughter named Mary Teeple Wallen born in 1842. His wife Mary died a short time later.

Dr. Wallen moved to Morpeth, Ontario in 1844.  He subsequently practiced medicine in Ridgetown, Wardsville and Dresden before settling in Chatham.

Dr. Wallen married Sarah Coburn on the 7th of August, 1845.  Mrs. Wallen was born on the 29th of November 1824 in Beamsville, Ontario. Her parents were Eliphalet Coburn and the former Alathea Robinson.

Dr. and Mrs. Wallen had 3 children; Alathea, Edward and James.  Mrs. Wallen was active in the Maccabee’s Club.

Initially Dr. Wallen and his family lived near the Town Line between Howard Township and Harwich Township (in Chatham-Kent). By 1854, the Wallen family was living on Adelaide Street in Chatham, Ontario.

Dr. Wallen died on the 18th of January, 1863.  After the death of her husband, Mrs. Wallen supported herself by teaching music.  She died on the 1st of September 1910, in Blenheim, Ontario.  Dr. and Mrs. Wallen were buried at Maple Leaf Cemetery.

*Dr. Wallen’s daughter Mary Teeple Wallen married Harvey Morris and their son, Dr. Wallen K. Morris practiced medicine in Detroit Michigan until his death on the 16th of May, 1928 at the age of 44.