Dr. Sarah Georgiana McVean was born in Dresden, Ontario on the 21st of December, 1886. She was the second of 10 children born to Osgoode Howard McVean and the former Catharine Lavina Philpott. On Dr. McVean’s birth record her father’s occupation is listed as a bookkeeper. Osgoode McVean’s father Alexander McVean, owned a wood working factory in Dresden, that produced wagon wheels. When Alexander McVean retired in 1890, Osgoode and his brother William took over the ownership of the factory. Dr. McVean was raised in a home located at 379 Hughes Street in Dresden. This home has been included on the Chatham-Kent Municipal Heritage Register. Her siblings were; John Alexander McVean, Alice McVean, Kathleen Philpott McVean, Alexander McVean, Mary Osgoode McVean, James William McVean, Osgoode Howard McVean, Donald “Patrick” McVean and Hetty “Esther” McVean.
Dr. McVean attended the Dresden Public School and London Collegiate Institute. She graduated M.B. from The University of Toronto Faculty of Medicine in 1908 and she interned at South Framingham Hospital in Framingham, Massachusettes, U.S.A.
Dr. McVean practiced medicine in Dresden from 1911 until 1916. During this period of her life, she lived with her large family on Hughes Street. She was listed in the 1913 Bell Telephone Directory. Her office was located on St George Street and her telephone number was 64a.
Dr. McVean moved to Hamilton, where she worked until her retirement around 1950. She retired to Port Lambton where she lived with her brother Alex McVean. Her sister, Alice McVean married Dr. Walter E. Lake in Dresden on the 10th of June, 1914. Her sister Mary Osgoode McVean married Dr. William Bethune in Dresden on the 31st of March, 1921.
Dr. McVean died in Wallaceburg on the 10th of September, 1979. She was buried at the Dresden Cemetery.
*Dr. McVean’s brother-in-law Dr. Walter Edward Lake and her nephew, Dr. James Douglas Lake also appear on the Chatham-Kent Physician Tribute website.
**Dr. McVean’s brother Alex McVean, married Ila Fern Stonehouse in Wallaceburg in 1920. Mrs. Ila Fern (Stonehouse) McVean’s brother was Dr. Garnet George Stonehouse and he practiced medicine in Wallaceburg. His biography also appears on the Chatham-Kent Physician Tribute website.
***Dr. McVean’s brother Lieutenant James William McVean served during WWI. He was seriously injured in a plane crash on the 1st of March, 1918. He died in Toronto on the 10th of December, 1920 of complications from his injuries. Dr. Sarah McVean appears on the death record as the informant. Lieutenant McVean was buried at the Christ Church Anglican Cemetery in Kingston. Dr. McVean’s brother Private Donald Patrick McVean served during WWII with the 24th Kent Regiment. Both of Dr. McVean’s brothers appear on the Gathering Our Heroes website.