Dr. Duncan T. McEwan
Dr. Duncan T. McEwan was a prominent Orlando surgeon who was originally born in Cooperstown, New York in 1903. He moved to Orlando in 1928 after graduating from Cornell Medical School. Dr. McEwan also held the positions of the president of the Orange County Medical Society and the Florida Medical Association as well as the chief of staff and surgical services at Orlando Regional Medical Center.
This interview was conducted by Jean Yothers on April 7, 1975 for the Friends of the Orlando Public Library’s Oral History Committee.
At the beginning of the interview, Jean Yothers gives an overview of the topics discussed. She first questions Dr. Duncan T. McEwan about his first visit to Orlando, which happened in 1926, after his second year of medical school. He talks about taking a sleeper train from Jacksonville and later meeting his uncle, who lived on Delaney St. Dr. McEwan later speaks about traveling to Wilbur by the Sea and how at one point it would only take an hour to arrive there from Orlando. She then asks him about a house call that he had taken when he began his practice in Orlando in 1930. On this topic, Dr. McEwan mentions that the community had no money, and his work was often for paid by bartering. From this topic, he goes on to discuss bootleg whiskey at the San Juan Hotel and the doctors (including him) that lived in it. Jean Yothers later asks him about the murder of Dolores Myerly, which happened February 16, 1938 at the San Juan Hotel, and he relates his involvement (as a physician) in the infamous murder case. They then continue discussing George Coston and the Coston Trial.
In part two, they discuss Dr. McEwan’s medical career (1930 – 1973) and later discuss Dr. Gaston Edwards and Dr. McEwan (same name, different person). Jean Yothers then asks about early doctors on the “east side of Lake Eola”. She also asks him about specific doctors who practiced in Orlando. They then discuss the future of medical professions. The interview cuts short after that but following the interview, there are footnotes from Jean Yothers.
We are grateful for the Orange County Regional History Center’s making this recording available for Orlando Memory.
Listen to other oral histories with other Orlando pioneers.