Alaska Frontier Surgeon
Alaska Frontier Surgeon Arthur Holmes Johnson, M.D., Pioneer Kodiak Physician

Publisher - Sprucehaven Publishing Author - Robert Holmes Johnson, M.D.

When A. Holmes Johnson landed in Kodiak just before World War II, Kodiak was an unincorporated village, a far different place than it is today. The streets were unpaved. There were two stores but no medical facilities. Dr. Johnson and his family adopted Kodiak as their home. They provided medical care and led efforts to bring about its growth and improvement.

Before Kodiak, Dr. Johnson had a surgical practice in Oregon. In his youth, he served as a missionary in Rhodesia modern day Zimbabwe. When the United States entered World War I, powered by a strong sense of duty, he left the mission, returned to America and joined the Army. Armistice Day found him arriving on the front lines in France.

Completing his medical education, he practiced surgery in Portland during the thirties depression. He spent one summer in the Territory of Alaska as a cannery physician Bristol Bay. On the way home, the ship stopped in Kodiak. A sunny day, a peaceful, pastoral community with no doctor and he was hooked!

As an activist seeking better education and medical services for the people, he met, worked with, and befriended people who became the leaders of the new state in 1959. He not only witnessed history, he also made it. Written by his son and partner in medical practice, Alaska Frontier Surgeon chronicles A. Holmes Johnson's remarkable life and many contributions to Alaska and generations of Alaskans.

Alaska Frontier Surgeon is a nicely written and detailed account of how an energetic and talented son of missionary parents became the first physician in a remote part of Alaska. It is an engaging story of his daily life as the lone provider of modern medicine to the island communities on Kodiak.
     --George S. Rhyneer, M.D., Retired Alaskan Cardiologist

A beautifully written story of the maturing of a man told in his own words from his youthful journals kept throughout his life. This is the story of a man who left his mark for many generations to come on his chosen community, Kodiak, Alaska. A. Holmes Johnson was a product of his birth, his time and his decisions, as are we all. This book leaves us pondering our own lives, relationships, and purpose.
     --Nancy Kemp, Member and Past President of the Kodiak Historical Society

If is often said that each Alaskan pioneer has a fascinating story to tell and the biography of Dr. Arthur Holmes Johnson, and his wife Fostina Bishop Johnson, as written by their son, Dr. Bob Johnson, is no exception. What is exceptional is the loving humor and wit with which the Johnsons are remembered and their story told by their son, himself no small presence in Kodiak. From Dr. A. Holmes Johnson s first Alaskan experience as a cannery physician in 1937 over the course of a long, colorful and sometimes establishment-shaking career as a frontier physician in Kodiak, Alaska, the doctor's son narrates a touching, often laugh-out-loud funny and always fascinating look at the challenges, hardships and friendships that lured and endeared this frontier family to life in remote Alaska. From the very beginning, where Dr. Bob describes his grandmother as a devout Christian, who believed thoroughly in the Bible as she saw it. Her three children were indoctrinated as thoroughly as she could manage to the very last, I'm really the lucky one, as I will not have to grieve when my loved ones go first... you will not be able to put this book down and will come to know and respect these complex characters who put their mark so indelibly on Kodiak's history.
     --Barbara Bolson, Director, Kodiak College/UAA

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Category: Memoir / Biography Suggested Price: 17.95 Release Date: 06/01/2014 ISBN: 978-1-9353473-7-8 Product Type: Paperback # Pages: 384