The Descendants

Of

Alexander Patterson Biles

 

WORKING DRAFT

Last Change: 25 November 2014

 

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Dorothy Ruth Gilbert (1920 - 2012)

Dottie

 

Gilbert, Dorothy Ruth (35) #.jpg

 

1.  Dottie’s parents: Reverend Charles Henry and Ruth VanNoy (Diament) Gilbert

(see Para. 4.C.13.d.(7.(b. )

 

2.  Dottie’s birth: 26 July 1920 at Good Shepherd Hospital/Methodist Hospital, Syracuse, Onondaga County, New York.

 

    Dottie's death: 2012 at Wesley Village, a United Methodist Home, 209 Roberts Road, Pittston, Pennsylvania 18640; interred Mt. Zion Cemetery, Exeter, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

 

3.  Dottie’s formal education:

 

From

To

School Name, Location, Diploma/Degree

1926

1927

Through 3rd grade at Kirkwood Grammar School, Kirkwood, New York.  Two-roomed school; 5 classes in 1 room and 3 in the other.

1927

1930

Fourth grade at Great Bend Grammar School, Great Bend, Pennsylvania.

1930

1933

Forest City High School, Forest City, Pennsylvania.  Dottie described it as: “a terrible place.”  It was at the height of the great depression.  Very hard times; hard drinking, and the school system rules only permitted hiring teachers who had matriculated from the Forest City school system, so no new blood or ideas.  Additionally, a population that was very highly immigrant-based to work in the local coal mines, meaning English was a 2nd language for most people. 

1933

1936

Meshoppen High School, Meshoppen, Pennsylvania: graduated class valedictorian.

1936

1938

Wyoming Seminary, Kingston, Pennsylvania; graduated with honors (elected to Cum-laud Society).  Won oratorical contest on 22 February 1938 with subject: The American Negro.  Same year won the Guthrie-Thomson poetry prize for: The Circuit Rider, which with 2 other poems, Armistice at Arlington and Nature’s Hand, appeared in the centenial edition of Wyoming Seminary verse in 1944.  Was also class poet.

1939

1940

Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Oberlin, Lorain County, Ohio; studied piano, organ, and other music-related studies for 1 year.  Dottie loved it, but her parents could not afford further study there.

1941

1944

Nesbitt Memorial Hospital School of Nursing, Kingston, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.  Nesbit’s nursing program was heavily subsidized by the US Army Nurse Corps.  Students, such as Dottie, had their tuition paid, got a book allowance, and received $35/month to study nursing.  Dottie used her 1st month’s pay to solve some troublesome dental problems.

1945

1949

University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; funded by GI Bill; graduated “with distinction” with a B.S. degree majoring in nursing education (obstetrical specialty).

1950

1951

University of Colorado, Denver, Colorado; took some nursing courses; left in January 1951.

1951

1951

After applying to the Mission Board of the Methodist Church, on which her cousin, Dr. Hyla Watters, was a member, attended the Kennedy School of Missions, Hartford, Connecticut in preparation for missionary work.  Commissioned a missionary at the session of Wyoming Conference at Central Methodist Church, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, entering the Woman’s Division of Christian Service on 8 April 1951.  Flight to Brussels, Belgium 28 December 1951

1951

1952

Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium; 6 months preparation for missionary work in the Belgium Congo; required by Belgium government.  Sailed for Belgium on 17 August 1951.  First studied French, then Belgium colonial policy, and in March 1952 completed a thorough course in tropical medicine at the School of Tropical Medicine in Antwerp, Belgium (graduated 1st in her class).

1956

1957

New York Maternity Center Association and Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland; studied midwifery while on furlough from medical missionary work in Africa; earned nurse-midwife certificate.

1961

1962

Johns Hopkins University, School of Public Health, Baltimore, Maryland; MS degree majoring in International Health.

 

4.  Dottie’s military service:

 

From

To

Location

1945

1945

Army Nurse Corps (ANC) (serial #: N794026) during World War II.  Entered active duty on 2 January 1945 from Wyoming, Luzurne County, Pennsylvania.  Had to join the Red Cross before joining the Army.  All of this was a little bizarre for Dottie, since her father and entire family were “dyed in the wool pacifists.”

1945

 

Fort Meade, Maryland; basic training.

1945

1945

Fort Story, Virginia; worked in hospital.

1945

1945

Seattle, Washington; on VE day sailed for Hawaii.

1945

1945

Post Hospital, Scofield Barracks, Oahu, Hawaii; on VJ day sailed for Okinawa aboard the hospital ship Repose.

1945

1945

Okinawa, Japan: survived a typhoon there aboard ship, and two weeks later another, stronger typhoon in a tent city.  Departed Okinawa aboard the ship Gage

1945

1946

Red Cross Hospital, Osaka, Japan; transformed the hospital into a US Army hospital.  Returned to her parents’ home in Carvertown, Pennsylvania on 12 March 1946.

 

5.  Dottie’s employment history:

 

From

To

Employer, location, job

1938

1938

Taught private piano lessons around the Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania area.

1940

1941

Taught piano around the Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania area.  Then was a domestic servant in a private residence at Kingston, Pennsylvania.

1944

 

Private duty nursing, Nesbitt Memorial Hospital.

 

 

Philadelphia General Hospital and other Philadelphia area hospitals; during spare time while enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania.

1947

1947

Ideal Hospital, Endicott, New York; maternity nursing.

1949

1951

Philadelphia General Hospital; maternity nurse; left for missionary training in January.

1951

1983

Lambuth Memorial Hospital, Wemba, Nyama, Belgian Congo; taught nursing subjects to African students and delivered babies.

1983

1990

Sierra Leon; taught nursing and delivered babies.

1990

1992

Benin; taught nursing and delivered babies.

 

6.  Dottie’s addresses:

 

From

To

Address

1920

1922

Resided with parents at Lisle, Broome County, New York.

1922

1923

Resided with parents at Flemingville, Tioga County, New York.

1923

1925

Resided with parents at Lisle, Broome County, New York.

1925

1927

Resided with parents at Kirkwood, Broome County, New York.

1927

1930

Resided with parents at Great Bend, Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania.

1930

1930

Resided with parents at Binghamton, Broome County, New York.

1930

1933

Resided with parents at Forest City, Pennsylvania.

1933

1936

Resided with parents at Meshoppen, Wyoming County, Pennsylvania.

1936

1938

Wyoming Seminary, Kingston, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, while her parents resided at Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

1938

1939

Resided with parents at Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

1939

1940

Oberlin Conservatory of Music, Oberlin, Lorain County, Ohio.

1940

1940

Resided with parents at Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.

1940

1944

Kingston, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania while a student at Nesbit Memorial Hospital.

1944

1945

Resided with parents at Carverton, Luzern County, Pennsylvania.

1945

1946

Several military assignments.

1946

1946

Resided with parents at Carverton, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania from March to September.

1946

1949

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; in school.  Parents resided at Maine, New York.

1949

1950

Denver, Colorado; in school.

1951

1951

Hartford, Connecticut; in school.

1951

1952

Brussels and Antwerp, Belgium; in school.

1952

1956

Wembo Nyama, Belgium Congo; employed as medical missionary.

1956

1957

Baltimore, Maryland; student.

1957

1960

Wembo Nyama, Belgium Congo; employed as medical missionary, teaching nursing subjects and acting as nurse midwife; evacuated to Rhodesia as a precaution when Belgium granted the Congo independence.

1960

1960

Rhodesia (southern part); practiced nursing at Mutumbara.

1960

1961

Resided with parents on furlough from missionary work.

1961

1962

Baltimore, Maryland; student.

1962

 

Kimpesi (near Leopoldville), Repubic of the Congo; Congo Polytechnical Institute; taught public health courses.

 

 

 

 

7.  Dottie’s organizational affiliations:

 

From

To

Organization, offices held

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8.  Other biographical notes on Dottie:

 

a. Dottie’s father put her mother on a train from Lisle to Syracuse when Dottie’s birth was imminent.  Charles chose Syracuse over closer Binghamton hospitals, because there was time and Methodist Hospital was affiliated with his profession.  At age 4 she also had her tonsils removed in Syracuse.

 

b. Dottie was inspired in her life’s work as a missionary in Africa by her 2nd cousin (once removed), Dr. Hyla Ada Watters “Hyla Doc” (Para 3.d. of Gen 3 of the Stowell Annex), a missionary surgeon for many years in China and Liberia, who Dottie described as: “my idol and role model.”  At age 13 (1933) Dottie told her parents she was going to Africa as a medical missionary.

 

 

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