Chicago, Illinois — 1836-1915
Dr. Black was born near Winchester, Illinois, on August 3rd, 1836. When he was nine the family moved to a farm in Cass county. He spent a great deal of his time in the nearby woods, learning directly about nature.
Later he traveled around the countryside with his brother, a practicing physician, and acquired a great deal of knowledge about the human body, its ailments and their treatment. He later met a dentist , under whom he studied. After a few weeks of associating with him , he learned enough to go into private practice of dentistry for himself. G.V. Black had little formal education, and only a little knowledge of the basic sciences. He went into dental practice in Jacksonville, Illinois, and became very well known and respected as a practitioner of dentistry.
He later accepted a position as Professor in Oral Pathology at the Missouri Dental College. During this period, he presented more than 100 papers on a variety of aspects in dentistry. He attended many meetings of the Illinois State Dental Society, and he served as Secretary and President of the Society. In 1877, the Missouri Dental College conferred upon him the D.D.S. degree. Dr. Black became very famous because of his versatility and contributions to both dentistry and medicine. By the 15th year, G.V. Black have become an outstanding personality in the dental profession.
His work had attracted so much attention in educational circles that he accepted a position as Professor of Pathology in the Chicago College of Dental Surgery ( later to be come Loyola University School of Dentistry). He traveled to Chicago, where he received a M.D. degree fro the Chicago Medical School. In 1891 he transferred his professional activities to Northwestern University Dental School were he became the Dean in 1897. The versatile man, during his long career, did more to standardize operative procedures in dentistry than any other man in history. His great contributions to dental literature were his Operative Dentistry and Dental Pathology texts. He is know to all of us as “The Grand Old Man of Dentistry”. Who could ask for anything more?
His life exemplifies his profound and often quoted statement:
“The professional man has no right to be other than a continuous student.”
The Academy is privileged and honored to induct Dr. G.V. Black into the PFA International Hall of Fame of Dentistry.