Dr. Reid’s invention.

Wilson Daily Times, 17 April 1911.

Though this looks like a newspaper article, the code at the bottom of this piece indicates that it was essentially an advertisement touting a device invented by Tuskegee Institute-trained veterinarian Dr. Elijah L. Reid to control frightened horses. Reid was, perhaps, at the peak of his career around this time, having moved from his native Wayne County to Stantonsburg and then to Wilson around 1905.

Read more about Dr. Reid here and here and here.

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

[Update, 4/16/2022: in veterinary medicine, to drench is to administer a draft of medicine to (an animal), especially by force, i.e. to drench a horse. Thanks, Briggs Sherwood.]

Dr. Elijah L. Reid, the old reliable.

Another ad for veterinarian Elijah L. Reid‘s vaunted wart cure. Reid, who grew up in northwest Wayne County, had settled just across the county line in Moyton, a village adjacent to Stantonsburg.

Wilson Daily Times, 1 October 1897.

Twenty years later, Reid had taken his talents ten miles up the road to Wilson and advertised as “the old reliable Veterinary Surgeon” with an office at his home at Elba and Viola Streets.

Wilson Daily Times, 2 October 1917.

Wilson, N.C., Sanborn fire insurance map, 1913.

Clippings courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Dr. Reid moves his veterinary office.

Wilson Daily Times, 9 August 1912.

In 1912, Tuskegee Institute-trained veterinarian Elijah L. Reid moved his practice to 304 East Barnes Street, the livery stable operated by John H. Aiken

The Norfolk & Southern station at the corner of Spring and Barnes Streets, and J.H. Aiken’s livery stable at 304 East Barnes. Detail, Sanborn fire insurance maps of Wilson, N.C., 1912.

Ten years later, Reid and Aiken’s location (now numbered 307 East Barnes) is labeled a “veterinnery,” but the city directory reveals that the business belonged to veterinarians L.J. Herring and M.M. Dew. Aiken had died in 1914, and Reid had  retired.

Detail, Sanborn fire insurance maps of Wilson, N.C., 1922.

N.B.: The nomination form for the Wilson Central Business-Tobacco Warehouse Historic District asserts that the building at 307 East Barnes, described as brick, was built circa 1912 as the livery and veterinary clinic of Dr. Lawrence Herring. However, the 1912 Wilson city directory shows that Herring was then practicing at Wilson Live Stock Company, 212 East Barnes Street. Also, the Sanborn map shows 307 as a wooden building, not brick. In the 1916 directory, Herring was at 306 East Barnes, the brick building depicted above adjacent to the veterinary building. 

Clipping courtesy of J. Robert Boykin III.

Reid’s Wart Cure.


Wilson Advance, 12 June 1895.

Elijah L. Reid (1864-1948) was the first (and only, until the 1980s) African-American veterinarian in Wilson County. His father, Washington Reid (1822-1889), was a prosperous farmer in northeast Wayne County, near modern Eureka. The Reids were a free family of color whose matriarch, Rhoda Reid, was born about 1795.