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Womack, Nathan Anthony

14 May 1901–2 Feb. 1975

Nathan Anthony Womack, surgeon and medical educator, was born in Reidsville, the son of James Henry and Susan Margaret Norman Womack. After receiving a bachelor of science degree from The University of North Carolina (1922) and an M.D. degree from Washington University, St. Louis, Mo. (1924), he served his internship and residency at Barnes Hospital, St. Louis, from 1924 to 1927. A traveling fellow in Europe in 1929–30, he returned to the Washington University School of Medicine and was named professor of surgery in 1947. From 1948 to 1951 he headed the Department of Surgery at the University of Iowa, then became professor of surgery and head of the department in The University of North Carolina's newly expanded School of Medicine, where he remained for sixteen years.

As a visiting professor for short courses, Womack taught at Yale University, Vanderbilt University, the universities of Michigan, Wisconsin, Arizona, Kentucky, and elsewhere. He was a member and an officer of a great many medical societies and contributed more than 120 articles to their journals. In addition, he served on the editorial boards of the Annals of Surgery and American Surgeon and on the editorial board of The University of North Carolina Press. Citations, distinguished service awards, and honorary memberships came to him from a variety of sources. At The University of North Carolina the Nathan A. Womack Surgical Society was organized by his former students.

On 23 Jan. 1937 Womack married Margaret Elizabeth Richardson of Reidsville, and they had a son and a daughter: James Anthony and Sarah Richardson (Mrs. Thomas A Hruska). An Episcopalian, he was buried in Reidsville.


Chapel Hill Newspaper, Durham Morning Herald, and other newspapers of the state, 3 Feb. 1975.

curriculum vitae (School of Medicine, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill).

William S. Powell, ed., North Carolina Lives (1962).

University Gazett, 21 Feb. 1975.

Who Was Who in America, vol. 6 (1976).

Additional Resources:

"Nathan Anthony Womack, MD: First Chairman." UNCDepartment of Surgery. UNC School of Medicine. (accessed February 25, 2014). [Portrait.]



Nathan Womack was my grandfather. My mother, Sarah Womack Hruska died in 2006. I know that no one except my sister and I will care about this detail, but I hate seeing her referred to as "Mrs. Thomas Hruska." She was divorced from our father in 1984. Although she kept the Hruska name, she earned a Phd and influenced countless people in her field of early childhood. Her Dad was her hero but she was my hero. Could you please refer to her by her own name in this article rather than by the name of her former husband? Also, my Dad's middle initial was not A. Thanks for considering this minor change to you interesting article.

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