Culley, Benjamin L., M. D., is recognized as one of the representative physicians and surgeons of Mississippi and is established in the active practice of his profession in the city of Jackson. He was born in Madison county, this State, Feb. 19, 1853, being a son of DeVando and Mary D. (Patteson) Culley, both of whom were native of Kentucky, whence the former came to Mississippi in 1832, locating in Hinds county, whence he later removed to Madison county, where he engaged in agricultural pursuits and where he passed the remainder of his life. He died in 1898, at the venerable age of eighty-four years, his wife having passed away in 1896, at the age of seventy-six years. The father was a brick mason by trade and followed this vocation some time after coming to Mississippi. He was one of the first merchants of Clinton, this State, which was at that time the largest town in the commonwealth. Later, as a planter, he was very successful, and was a man of prominence and influence in his community. He was an elder in the Presbyterian church and was a Democrat in his political proclivities. He entered the Confederate service at the time of the Civil war, but owing to ill health was found ineligible for active duty in the ranks. Dr. Culley remained on the home plantation until he was about twenty years of age, having in the meanwhile been afforded the advantages of the local schools and the academic school at Fannin, Rankin county. For two years he was employed in a drug store at Madison Station, and within this interval he took up the study of medicine, having determined to prepare himself for the medical profession and relying upon his own resources in providing for his technical education. In 1876 he was matriculated in the medical department of the University of Louisville at Louisville, Ky., where he was graduated in 1878, receiving his degree of Doctor of Medicine and standing seventh in the honor class of ten members. He then located at his old home, in Madison county, where he met with excellent success in his professional work, there continuing his practice until 1887, when he removed to Jackson, where he has built up and maintained a large and representative practice. He keeps fully abreast of the advances made in all departments of his profession and is identified with the American medical association, the Mississippi State medical association and the Hinds county medical society. He was assistant secretary of the State association for several years, and has contributed a number of papers on the occasion of its meetings. He also received appointment as a member of the National Legislative Council, for the promotion of proper medical legislation throughout the Union. He is vice-president of the Jackson Sanitorium and a member of its board of directors. In his practice he makes a specialty of obstetrics and diseases of women. The doctor gives his allegiance to the Democratic party and is affiliated with the Knights of Honor and the Ancient Order of United Workmen, for both of which he is medical examiner. He and his wife are devoted members of the Presbyterian church and he was prominently concerned in promoting the organization of and in establishing the church of this denomination on the west side of Jackson, being personally identified with the First Presbyterian church, in which he is an elder. In 1880 Dr. Culley was united in marriage to Miss Lucy F. Fontaine, who was born in Kentucky, and they have three children: Percy F., Massena L., and John C.
Benjamin L.Culley, M. D.
Submitted by Lori Thornton
Source: Rowland, Dunbar, ed. Mississippi, Comprising Sketches of Counties, Towns, Events, Institutions, and Persons, Arranged in Cyclopedic Form, in three volumes. Vol. 3. [Contemporary Biography] Atlanta: Southern Historical Publishing Association, 1907. pages 173-74
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