S. W. Harrington

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Stuart William "Tack" Harrington, M.D., M.S.
Born April 20, 1889
Blossburg, Pennsylvania
Died March 1975 (aged 85)
Rochester, Minnesota
Nationality American
Alma mater University of Pennsylvania (MD),
University of Minnesota (MS)
Occupation Physician
Football Coach
Employer Howard Hospital
Dickinson College
Mayo Clinic
Spouse(s) Gertrude Harrington

Stuart William “Tack” Harrington (April 20, 1889 - March 1975) was an American physician and surgeon, an All-American football player, and a head football coach.

Early life[edit]

Dr Harrington was born in Blossburg, Pennsylvania in 1889. In 1908 he entered Pennsylvania State College as a premedical student. He played one year of varsity football there under Tom Fennell.[1] He then matriculated to the University of Pennsylvania (UPA), where he received the M.D. degree In 1913. While at UPA, he played 3 years of varsity football and was named an All-American halfback in 1912 by the The Philadelphia Press.[1][2][3]

Medical career[edit]

After Medical School, Dr Harrington interned at Howard Hospital in Philadelphia. In November 1914 he became a fellow in surgery at the Mayo Clinic. He earned a Master of Science degree in surgery from the University of Minnesota. In 1920, Harrington became head of a section of surgery at the Mayo Clinic, eventually becoming a full professor.[1]

On the advice of Dr. William Mayo, Dr Harrington changed his subspeciality from gastrointestinal and urologic surgery to thoracic and breast surgery. Eventually Dr Harrington developed an international reputation in the diagnosis and treatment of diaphragmatic hernias and mediastinal tumors. He was honored several times by the American Medical Association for work on chronic postpneumonic empyema, and pericardiectomy for chronic constrictive pericarditis. In 1937, Dr. Harrington was elected the 20th president of The American Association for Thoracic Surgery and in 1948 he helped found the American Board of Surgery.[1]

Harrington wrote 38 peer-reviewed articles in professional journals and lectured extensively.

Football coach[edit]

S. W. Harrington
Sport(s) Football
Playing career
1908–1909 Penn State
1910–1912 Penn
Position(s) Halfback
Coaching career (HC unless noted)
1913–1914 Dickinson
Head coaching record
Overall 6–11
Accomplishments and honors
3rd team All-American, 1912 by The Philadelphia Press

In order to supplement his income as a medical intern in Philadelphia, Harrington served as head football coach at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Pennsylvania for the 1913 and 1914 football seasons.[1][4] His coaching record at Dickinson was 6–11.[5]

Retirement and death[edit]

Dr. Harrington retired from active medical practice in the early 1960s. He and his wife, Gertrude, enjoyed automobile trips around the U.S. until Harrington gradually lost his eyesight. He died in Rochester, MN in 1975 and is buried there.


  1. ^ a b c d e Bernatz, Dr. Philip E. (March 2005). "Historical Perspectives of The American Association Thoracic Surgery: Stuart Harrington, MD (1889-1975)" (PDF). The Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery. –American Association for Thoracic Surgery: 670. 
  2. ^ "2008 University of Pennsylvania Football Media Guide". suathletics.com. Retrieved 2008-09-19. 
  3. ^ "All-American Teams: The Sun Selects Its Stars For The Honorary Elevens; Thorpe Is the One Best Bet; Brickley Is His Closest Rival, Ketcham And Bomeisler Are His Heels". The Sun, Baltimore. December 3, 1912. 
  4. ^ Centennial Conference "2008 Centennial Conference Football Prospectus"
  5. ^ http://www.centennial.org/football/mediaguide/PDF/21-23-Dickinson.pdf