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Royal S. Copeland. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-91497).


Copeland, Royal Samuel (07 November 1868–17 June 1938), physician and U.S. senator, was born near Dexter, Michigan, the son of Roscoe Pulaski Copeland and Frances Jane Holmes, farmers. Young Copeland was educated in the public schools in the vicinity of Dexter and graduated from Michigan State Normal College at Ypsilanti. Following a brief stint of public school teaching, he attended and, in 1889, graduated from the Medical College, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Specializing in ophthalmology and ontology, he practiced medicine in Bay City, Michigan, from 1890 to 1895, leaving that practice to serve as professor at the Homeopathic Medical College at the University of Michigan from 1895 to 1908. Copeland exhibited certain political skills in his profession, rising to the presidency of the American Ophthalmological and Ontological Association. He extended his talents beyond his profession, becoming the Republican mayor of Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1901 and president of its board of education. He was also active in the Methodist church, serving as a delegate to the Methodist Ecumenical Conference in London in 1900 and three times as a delegate to the Methodist General Conference. In 1908 he married Frances Spalding; they had two children....