Dr. James Madison Pruett was a country doctor who was born in the Oregon territory in 1849. He was the third born child of Jehu Pruett and Elizabeth Ringo Pruett. He married Precious Buckingham in 1875 and they had five children with three surviving to adulthood. His obituary says he died at his home following an illness of two months in 1922.
His parents were born in Missouri and were early Oregon pioneers that arrived by wagon train in 1847. James included the details of his parents and their journey to Oregon in his journal. He wrote of his parents and, "Joining forces with Uncle John T. Smith and family, an team and wagons for both families was fitted up and all their belongings, including 3 children, the journey was begun and they landed on the Abiqua River, near the present town of Silverton, in Marion County, Oregon, about the last of October 1847."
Pruett Land Claim.
He continues to say that "Here they both located claims and erected houses. Father and Mother remained on their claim for three years and then sold out and went to Salem where they lived one year and from there to the old Donation claim on French Prairie where they settled in the fall of 1851 and where the home was established and continued until after Mother's death, which occurred March 5th, 1865, after an illness of several weeks with typhoid fever." 
From his journal, James tells us that "Father removed to McMinnville in October after her [Elizabeth Ringo] death and lived there until his death on July 24, 1866, when the family was broken up and scattered."
By 1866, McMinnville had 300 residents, two doctors, two churches, a flour mill, a photography studio, a silversmith, a shoe shop, and two wagon shops. The Baptists began a private school in McMinnville in 1849; in 1858, it was chartered under the territorial government as the Baptist College. The school was later called McMinnville College.
James's older brother, William Hamilton Pruett was appointed Executor of his father's estate and was also appointed his guardian as well as his brother and sisters John, Mary, Martha and Minerva. The court records are provided as .PDF files attached to the J.H. Pruett Will & Guardianship freespace page. The records are an accounting of their monthly living expenses. The itemized accounts provide an interesting view of the early pioneer days. His sisters purchased items needed to dress in the fashion of their day which included; fabric, shoes, hose, gloves and hoops.
James M. Pruett Signature
James writes in his journal that he attended the public schools of Oregon and Philomath College. James moved to Benton county to attend Philomath College sometime after 1866. Philomath College, built in 1867, now houses the Benton County Historical Society and Museum.
Philomath is in Benton county and about 50 miles south of McMinnville where James was living when his father died in 1866. He was in his late teens when he moved to Benton county to attend Philomath College.
James was twenty-six years old when he married Precious Buckingham on November 7, 1875 at Simpson's Chapel in Benton County, Oregon.
MARRIED. At Simpson's Chapel, near Monroe, in this county. Nov. 7, 1875, by Rev. Philbrook, Dr. James M. Pruett, of Pendleton, Umatilla county Oregon, and Miss Precious Buckingham, of this county. Compliments of the parties received. May Heaven's "choice blessings ever rest upon the happy pair, is the earnest prayer of "ye printers." who were so handsomely remembered. The liberal supply of elegant cake, accompanying the notice, was typical of the large-heartedness of the bride and bridegroom."
After they married, James and Precious moved to Pendleton, Oregon where James had established his medical practice. Pendleton was over three hundred miles east of Precious's home in Bellfountain.
George, Ralph and Clifford (from left).
Precious wrote a letter to her half-sister Lovina Buckingham Gragg on March 16, 1878. In her letter she shares the day-to-day challenges of running a medical practice and says that, "The Dr, started off on a thirty mile trip yesterday morning. Am looking for him back this evening. He has another call waiting him when he comes back to go to Happner which is about fifty miles & do not know whether he will go or not. It is a long ways for people to have to send for a Physician and a long time for the doctor. Pretty good for The Doctor financially if he can get anything for it but pretty hard if he can't."
Precious also mention her father Heman Buckingham when she described the recent growth in Pendleton, she wrote to her sister that "Our county is settling up very rapidly. Land that has hitherto been considered worthless - except for grazing purposes is being taken up and water found at the depth of eighteen feet in some places while in others they have to go deeper. This is out here on the hills north of town. Pa can tell you what kind of country it is. I think he passed over some of it when he started home from here."
James and Precious had children born in Pendleton.
Both of their daughters Della and Pauline died in early childhood.
James wrote about the death of his daughters in his journal and included the following bible verse: "Della died December 8, 1878 aged 1 year, 11 months, 16 days Pauline died May 30, 1880"
Malachi 3:17 “Angels whisper that our darlings Are in lands of love so fair, That their little feet are waiting, Close beside the golden stair.”
Sometime after 1887, Precious and James had a large home built outside Pendleton at 615 SW 13th Street where James had his practice and the family resided. 
Pruett home as it looks today.
It is listed in the "Historical Buildings of Pendleton" and described as "This large and well maintained home was built for Dr. J.M. and Precious Pruett sometime after 1887. The second story of the house was used by Doctor Pruett as his office. In 1898 the house was sold to Edgar and Mercy Smith and has remained in the Smith Vaughan family since that time. It now serves as a women's clothing shop as well as the family house. This house is the oldest Queen Anne style house still standing in Pendleton."
In 1898 the Pruett family moved to Oakland, California. The local newspaper recorded that "the Pruett family have been residents of Pendleton for over twenty years, but on account of the health of the doctor and the education of the three sons they have decided to make a change. They have disposed of most of their household goods and expect to sell their fine residence on the hill southwest of the city." 
The biggest impact was the influx of refugees from San Francisco, many who stayed in Oakland even after San Francisco had rebuilt. In the three days following the earthquake, more than 150,000 people fled to Oakland, doubling its population in 72 hours.
Dr. J.M. and Precious Pruett in Oakland in 1920.
In August following the disaster, Precious B. Pruett is listed in the Oakland Tribute for financial interests in converting a barn to a home at 1498 Eighth Ave. and mortgaging property to Max Levy on South 20th Street.
Precious and James were members of the 10th Avenue Baptist Church in Oakland and were active members of their community. The kept in close contact with their family back in Oregon and made several visits over the years to Pendleton and Bellfountain. 
We know from his Journal that he attended Philomath College, secondly the Physio-Medical College in Cincinnati and lastly the Medical College of Ohio, Cincinnati where he graduated on March 1, 1875. His graduation at the Physio-Medical College was on March 1, 1872. Based on this evidence he likely started medical school the following semester, in the Fall of 1873.
The historian, Waite, describes the process in Ohio, stating that a student spent about 30 weeks in classes and 124 weeks in preceptorship, thereby emphasizing the great importance of the clinical experience (preceptorship) in the education process. The requirements for the degree of Doctor of Medicine in these early years was somewhat uniform, although there were exceptions. A candidate had to have completed 2 years of classes and 3 years of preceptorship and be 21 years of age. Although initially some preliminary education was required, this was gradually reduced to knowledge of Latin and Greek and evolved to no requirement beyond secondary school. However, many did have some college experience.
In tabulating the total cost of medical education then, we must add all these factors together (see Table 5). When a clinical or hospital rotation charge is added, the total cost then increases to $788. This total could be as high as $1250 at some of the city schools.
Table 5. Typical Cost of Medical Education (Medical School Attendance for 2 Years)
Tuition (lecture tickets 2 courses)
Room and Board (16 weeks x 2)
Preceptorship (3 years)
Either amount was a large sum of money to be accumulated at a time when the annual income for a physician seldom surpassed $600 a year. A factory laborer earned about $360 a year, whereas a farm laborer earned about half of that sum. This was quite a sum of money for an orphan to gather in that day. The probate and guardianship records for James's father might provide more insight into how he was able to finance his education.
The Oregon Legislature created the Oregon Medical Board in 1889 to regulate the practice of medicine in the state of Oregon and to protect Oregon citizens from unauthorized or unqualified persons. Lawmakers created the Board after 10 years of lobbying by the Oregon State Medical Society (now known as the Oregon Medical Association or OMA). Dr. J.M. Pruett was admitted into the state medical society in June of 1889.
Dr. James Pruett practiced medicine at Pendleton, Umatilla County, Oregon from May 1875 until November 1898 when he removed to Oakland, Alameda County, California
Timeline and Residence
1849 - Marion County, Oregon: Born June 24 in Silverton, Marion County, Oregon Territory
1850 - Marion county, Marion, Oregon Territory: US Census.
1851 - Marion County, Oregon: Sister born Mary Louisa Pruett on October 6 in Marion County
1855 - Marion County, Oregon: Sister born Martha Susan Pruett on January 4 in Marion County
1857 - Marion County, Oregon: Sister born Minerva Adaline Pruett in January Marion County
1860 - Labish Precinct, Marion, Oregon: US Census
1865 - Marion County, Oregon: Death of mother Elizabeth Ringo Pruett on March 5 in Marion County
1865 - McMinnville, Oregon: Move from the homestead in Marion County to McMinnville
1866 - McMinnville, Oregon: Death of father Jehu Pruett on July 24 in McMinnville
1866 - Marion County, Oregon: Guardianship records for Pruett, John A, James M, Mary L, Martha S, & Minerva James states that "In July 1866 the family was broken up and scattered."
1866 - Philomath, Oregon: Moved from Marion county to Benton county to attend Philomath College.
1867 - Philomath, Oregon: Attended the Philomath College in Benton county
1872 - Cincinnati, Ohio: Graduated from the Physio-Medical College in Cincinnati, Ohio March 1
1875 - Cincinnati, Ohio: Graduation from the Medical College of Ohio, Cincinnati on March 1.
1875 - Ray County, Missouri: Visit to paternal uncle Joel Pruett was recorded by James in his journal in the spring on his return trip to Oregon from Ohio
1875 - Bellfountain, Oregon: Marriage to Precious Buckingham at Simpsons Chapel on November 7
1876 - Pendleton, Oregon: Birth of daughter Della in Pendleton on December 23
1878 - Pendleton, Oregon: Birth of son James Ralph in Pendleton on May 14
1878 - Pendleton, Oregon: Death of daughter Della in Pendleton on December 8
1880 - Pendleton, Oregon: Birth and death of daughter Pauline in Pendleton on May 30
1881 - Pendleton, Oregon: Birth of son William Clifford in Pendleton on May 29
1883 - Pendleton, Oregon: Birth of son George Buckingham in Pendleton on May 30
1888 - Pendleton, Oregon: Among the incorporators of the Oregon Building & Loan Association of Pendleton on April 19
1889 - Pendleton, Oregon: Admitted as a member of the Oregon State Medical Society
1892 - Pendleton, Oregon: Appointed as a board member of the Oregon Baptists for three years in October
1898 - Oakland, California: Precious and sons leave for new home in Oakland, California 
1898 - Oakland, California: James leaves for new home in Oakland, California in November
1899 - Pendleton, Oregon: James visits friends in Pendleton, Oregon in June
1900 - Oakland Ward 7, Alameda, California: US Census
1900 - Oakland, California: Appointed Deacon at the 10th Avenue Baptist Church on January 3 
1905 - Pendleton, Oregon: James and Precious visit Belfountain and Pendleton Oregon for several weeks in October 
1906 - Pendleton, Oregon: Sponsored the paving of fifty feet of Main Street in Pendleton in February
1906 - Oakland, California: Resided in Oakland during the San Francisco Earthquake in April
1906 - Oakland, California: Precious B. Pruett is listed in the Oakland Tribute for financial interests in converting a barn to a home at 1498 Eighth Ave. and mortgaging property to Max Levy on South 20th Street in August
1908 - Oakland, California: First grandchild born, a daughter Caryl to son James Ralph and wife Josie Benham delivered by his son Dr. William Clifford Pruett in Oakland on August 19
1910 - Oakland Ward 7, Alameda, California: US Census
1913 - Pendleton, Oregon: James and Precious traveled to Oregon to visit family and friends in July
1917 - Bellfountain, Oregon: James and Precious traveled to Bellfountain to spend several weeks with son Ralph and family in July
1920 - Oakland, Alameda, California: US Census residing at #1948 8th Avenue
1922 - Oakland, California: James died on August 22 at home in Oakland, California
1924 - Oakland, California: Precious died on June 14 at home in Oakland, California
James died on August 22, 1922 in Alameda, California.
↑ Marion County, Oregon, probate case files, Record# 68294 Case# 0300, Jehu H Pruett (1866), Will as to Heirs and Executor, 11 July 1866; Oregon State Archives, 800 Summer Street NE, Salem, OR 97310. J.H. Pruett Will & Guardianship
↑ 10.010.1 Marion County, Oregon, guardianship case files, Record# 68301 Case# 0306, Pruett, John A, James M, Mary L, Martha S, & Minerva (1866), Guardianship, 1866; Oregon State Archives, 800 Summer Street NE, Salem, OR 97310. J.H. Pruett Will & Guardianship
↑ 19.019.119.219.319.4 "United States Census, 1880," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MNCP-NR2 : 16 July 2017), Precious Pruett in household of James M Pruett, Pendleton, Umatilla, Oregon, United States; citing enumeration district ED 112, sheet 58A, NARA microfilm publication T9 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.), roll 1084; FHL microfilm 1,255,084.
↑ Waite FC. Medical education in Ohio. Ohio Med. 1953;49:623–626.
↑ 31.031.1 Slawson, Robert G. "Medical Training in the United States Prior to the Civil War*." Journal of Evidence-Based Complementary & Alternative Medicine 17, no. 1 (2012): 11-27. Accessed April 1, 2019. doi:10.1177/2156587211427404.
↑ "United States Census, 1850," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MHHW-DGQ : 12 April 2016), James M Pruette in household of John Pruette, Marion county, Marion, Oregon Territory, United States; citing family 102, NARA microfilm publication M432 (Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.).
↑ Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed 01 April 2019), memorial page for Elizabeth Ringo Pruett (22 Jan 1829–5 Mar 1865), Find A Grave: Memorial #24827208 citing Pioneer Memorial Cemetery, Brooks, Marion County, Oregon, USA ; Maintained by Patty C (contributor 46926670) [Gravestone photos]
Name Pruett, John A, James M, Mary L, Martha S, & Minerva
Record Type Guardianship
↑ Council on Medical Education and Hospitals (1918). Medical Colleges of the United States and of foreign countries 1918. American Medical Association. Retrieved 2010-06-01.
↑ "United States World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:K6ZG-TJD : 13 March 2018), James Ralph Pruett, 1917-1918; citing birth on May 14, 1878. Benton County, Oregon, United States, NARA microfilm publication M1509 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, n.d.); FHL microfilm 1,851,980.
↑ "California Birth Index, 1905-1995," database, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:VGKC-372 : 27 November 2014), Carrol E Pruett (incorrectly indexed of Caryl E Pruett), 19 Aug 1908; citing Alameda, California, United States, Department of Health Services, Vital Statistics Department, Sacramento.
↑ "United States Census, 1910," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MV24-NKN : accessed 21 October 2017), James M Pruett, Oakland Ward 7, Alameda, California, United States; citing enumeration district (ED) ED 141, sheet 2A, family 21, NARA microfilm publication T624 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1982), roll 71; FHL microfilm 1,374,084.
↑ "United States Census, 1920," database with images, FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/ark:/61903/1:1:MH3W-L45 : accessed 21 October 2017), James M Pruett, Oakland, Alameda, California, United States; citing ED 109, sheet 5A, line 5, family 135, NARA microfilm publication T625 (Washington D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 1992), roll 90; FHL microfilm 1,820,090.
Paternal and Maternal relationship is confirmed by an AncestryDNA test match between his great granddaughter Showalter-465 and her maternal third cousin. Their most-recent common ancestors are their great great grandparents, Jehu Higgins Pruett and Elizabeth Ringo. Predicted relationship from AncestryDNA: 3rd Cousin, based on sharing 27 cM across 2 segments; Confidence: Extremely High.
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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with James by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA.
However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line.
It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with James: