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July 31, 1994|CHARLES SOLOMON

AS LONG AS LIFE: The Memoirs of a Frontier Woman Physician by Mary Canaga Rowland, edited by F.A. Loomis (Storm Peak Press: $11.95; 173 pp., illustrated, paperback original). The life of Mary Rowland (1873-1966) could have inspired "Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman." She became interested in anatomy when she read her husband's medical books; he encouraged her earn a medical degree. After his death, she practiced medicine throughout the West: Her journals, edited and annotated by her great-great nephew, describe the lonely realities of caring for isolated ranchers. A remarkable, independent spirit, Rowland saw medicine progress from amputations without anesthetic to bypass surgery.

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