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 Biographies Index  



California Genealogy and History Archives

Sacramento County



A native of Illinois, Dr. F. L. Atkinson was born in Galena, Jo Daviess county, June 28, 1860. He was educated in the public schools of Galena, the Platteville Normal and Valparaiso University, after which he entered the medical department of the University of Michigan, and completed his medical course at Rush Medical College, Chicago. Graduating in February, 1885, with the degree of M. D., he came to San Francisco on May 1 of the same year, and after traveling over the coast and through the northwest, he located permanently in Sacramento. Here he has remained ever since, practicing his profession. On June 6, 1886, he was elected health officer by the City Board of Health, being the first physician chosen to that important place within the history of the city. He afterwards became assistant county physician and dispensary physician. Dr. Atkinson was elected a member of the Board of Education of Sacramento in 1897, and served in that position four years. During his service here he took an active interest both in a sanitary and educational way in the city schools and their improvement. He was the first member of the Board of Education in Sacramento to raise his voice against the obnoxious fraternities of the high schools, and the fact that the matter went to the legislature and was enacted into a law restraining these improper and harmful institutions, proved the wisdom of the Doctor's judgment.

Dr. Atkinson believes in a thorough and a practical preparation for the duties of any trade, calling or profession. With this in view for his own training he has traveled widely over the United States, Canada, Europe and Africa, studying in the hospitals of New York, Chicago, London, Paris and Vienna. He is a member of the Americal Medical Association, the State Medical Society of California, and the Sacramento Society for Medical Improvement, having been secretary and president of the last mentioned organization. He is surgeon to the Northern Electric Railway Company for this city. Having been an owner of swamp and overflowed lands he naturally takes much interest in the reclamation of such tracts, and has devoted much time to the study of the Sacramento river, with reference to the reclamation of its overflowed shores as well as its navigability. He is at present trustee for Reclamation District 900, which comprises twelve thousand acres of swamp and overflowed land in Yolo county directly opposite Sacramento City. The territory is known as West Sacramento. It was virtually through Dr. Atkinson's efforts that $2,500,000 was brought to Sacramento to develop these lands. He believes in the great possibilities of Sacramento and the Sacramento valley and is a powerful "booster" for these localities. While his time is given to the practice of medicine and surgery he finds time to look after his city real estate and landed interests.

Dr. Atkinson was married ip Sacramento in August, 1888, to Mrs. Florence E. Hodgdon, a native of Sacramento, the daughter of William P. Todhunter, one of the pioneers of Sacramento. Fraternally Dr. Atkinson was made a Mason in Sacramento Lodge No. 40, F. & A. M., and is also a member of all the Scottish Rite bodies. He is also a charter member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, the Woodmen of the World, Red Men and National Union. Politically he has always been a Republican and has taken a deep and active interest in the success of the party and in securing for the county a clean and progressive administration of public affairs. 

History of Sacramento County, California
Biographical Sketches of The Leading Men and Women of the County Who Have Been Identified With Its Growth and Development from the Early Days to the Present
History By: William L. Willis
Historic Record Company, Los Angeles, California (1913)

Transcribed by Peggy Hooper 2011