Dr. Augustus L. Justice biography

AUGUSTUS L. JUSTICE, M. D. Dr. Augustus L. Justice, an active representative of the medical fraternity in El Paso with a practice that is indicative of his thorough understanding of the science of medicine and his correct application of its principles, was born in Charlestown, Jefferson county, West Virginia, at that time, however, a part of Virginia, as the division of the states had not occurred. His parents were William and Hannah (Gray) Justice. The father was a Virginian and in later life removed to the west, spending his last days at Chatham, in Sangamon county, Illinois. The mother was of Scotch parentage and died in California.

Dr. Justice in his childhood days accompanied his parents on their removal to Hopkinsville, Kentucky, where he was reared and educated. When he was quite young he was for two terms a student in the medical department of the Michigan University at Ann Arbor. He passed the necessary examinations for practice, but was not old enough to receive his degree, as there is an age limit to conferring it. About that time the Civil war was inaugurated and he enlisted in 1861 as a member of Company A, Second Kentucky Infantry of the Confederate service under Colonel Roger Hanson. Going before the medical board in Nashville he received a commission as assistant surgeon of his regiment and after its capture at Fort Donelson he was assigned in the same capacity to the Fourth Tennessee Regiment. He was afterward in detached service in hospital work and as courier until the latter part of 1864, when, having been wounded on several occasions and completely disabled, he was compelled to leave the army. His service took him into Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia. He was wounded at Shiloh while on the firing line attending the wounds of his lieutenant-colonel, who had been hit by a bullet.

In the year 1865 Dr. Justice crossed the plains to Montana and spent two or three years as a physician in the new country of Virginia City and vicinity. It was at the time when that locality was the center of rough life because of the large number of desperadoes who made their way into districts where systems of government had not been organized, but the condition of affairs gave rise to the vigilance committee, which stood as the champion of law and order. Dr. Justice became a member of that committee and was associated with Colonel Wilbur F. Saunders and other well known men in putting down the lawlessness of those days.

On leaving Montana Dr. Justice went to Denver and in 1875 pursued the polytechnic course in the medical department of the Northwestern University at Chicago, which institution conferred upon him the degree of M. D. Later he had an honorary degree conferred upon him by Rush Medical College and subsequently he returned to his practice in Denver, but after a short time his health failed there and he went to Santa Rosa, Sonoma county, California, and later to San Francisco. Dr. Lane of the latter city recommended that Dr. Justice, because of the condition of his health, should remove to El Paso, Texas, believing that he would fine there a more congenial climate, and accordingly, in 1881, he came to the city which has since been his home, arriving here a short time before the completion of the Southern Pacific Railroad, of which he had been appointed the accredited physician in point of practice in this city and occupies a foremost place in the profession. He is a member of various medical societies, including the American Medical and through the interchange of thought and experience keeps in touch with the onward march of the medical fraternity. He is a man of broad knowledge in the line of his profession, of superior skill and of conscientious purpose and his labors have been of direct benefit to his fellow men.

Dr. Justice was married in New Orleans to Miss Estella Weque, a member of one of the aristocratic old Creole families of that city. They have two sons and one daughter.

Source: B. B. Paddock, History and Biographical Record of North and West Texas (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1906), Vol. II, pp. 711-712.