Thomas la Fayette Maddin

(1826-1908)

Thomas Maddin

Dr. Thomas Maddin was a professor at several universities in Nashville, Tennessee. During the Civil War, he was in charge of a large Confederate hospital in the city.

Thomas L. Maddin was born in Columbia, Tennessee in September 4, 1826. Son of a Methodist minister, he was educated in the schools of Middle Tennessee and Alabama. He received his A. B. Degree from La Grange College in 1845, and his M.D. degree from the University of Louisville in 1849. After practicing four years in Limestone County, Alabama, he moved to Nashville in 1854 to set up a private practice. Because of his reputation as a teacher, which he gained from teaching private medical students, he was appointed professor of anatomy in the newly created Shelby Medical College. This school, which was to serve as the medical department of the projected Methodist Episcopal Church South, and was the predecessor of Vanderbilt University, closed at start of the Civil War. During the Civil War, Dr. Maddin was given charge of a large Confederate hospital in Nashville.

His skill as a surgeon and his effectiveness in the management of the hospital, allowed him to continue the treatment of both Confederate and Union troops after the city's occupation in 1862. It was during this period he performed several operations that were noteworthy and attracted great attention at the time. In 1868 he was appointed to the chair of the institutes of medicine in the Medical Department of the University of Nashville, In 1873, when its medical department merged with Vanderbilt University, Dr. Maddin was appointed to the chair of the theory and practice of medicine, and was chosen as president of the faculty. When the Medical Department of the University of Nashville reestablished its independence in 1895, he remained there until 1905 when he retired as its professor of nervous diseases. He died in Nashville, April 27, 1908.