Augustus F. Ferguson 1847 – was an orthodox doctor who converted to homeopathy, graduating from the Michigan Homeopathic College and practiced with his brother, J. W. Ferguson who graduated from the Homeopathic Hospital College of Cleveland, Ohio.
Up to his eighteenth year he was engaged in working on his father’s farm and in attending the district school but when he had reached that age he attended Prof. Olds Academy at Lansing, after which he was engaged in the study of medicine for two years in the capital city with Dr. B. F. Bailey.
He attended a course of lectures in the winter of 1868-69 at the University of Michigan and became thoroughly prepared for the active practice of his profession.
Our subject first located at Okemos, where he practiced for a while before entering the Michigan Homeopathic College at Lansing from which he graduated with the degree of M. D. in 1872.
Returning to Okemos he engaged in the practice of his profession and six years after finishing his medical studies he formed a partnership with his brother, J. W. Ferguson M. D., who had just graduated from the Homeopathic Hospital College of Cleveland, Ohio.
This proved to be a very happy union and the brothers continued together until 1889. Dr. Ferguson has always had a bent for Political life, being an enthusiastic Democrat. In 1889 he was a candidate on the Democratic ticket for Representative to the Legislature and was elected by a large majority, running one hundred and eighteen votes ahead of his ticket in his own township.
During the first session of his legislative career he introduced thirteen bills, the majority of which became laws. Among the number was the anti-trust bill which had for its object the prevention of combination by any two or more individuals for the purpose of raising the price of any commodity, excepting there from farm products.
Dr. Ferguson’s efficient work in the interest of the agricultural class made him appreciated by his constituency and he was re-nominated for a second term and was elected by an increased majority.
During the session of 1891, Mr. Ferguson introduced seventeen bills and two joint resolutions, among which was a bill providing for a uniformity of text books in the public schools, and a medical bill to raise the standard of medical education, also a bill to consolidate the boards of penal institutions of the State, reducing the number from thirty-two to eight, a bill making provision for the Bertillion system for the identification of criminals, one to provide a signal in all places where the railroad track is – obscured and one changing the test of kerosene oil from one hundred and twenty degrees “flash test” to one hundred and twenty degrees ”fire test”.
It is estimated that this last-named bill will save the people of Michigan about $300,000 a year and at the same time secure them a better grade of oil.
While Dr. Ferguson was a legislator, he was actively engaged on several important committees and was tendered the chairmanship of the Committee on Ways and Means, the most important position of the House, but declined.
He was, however, Chairman of the Committee on Public Health and also on the Committee of Municipal Corporations, Upper Peninsula Mining Schools, Mines and Minerals and Northern Asylums.
He has always enjoyed the confidence of the leaders of his party in Ingham County.
Dr. Ferguson was happily married in 1871 to Miss Kate Hammond, a daughter of Dr. S. W. Hammond, a prominent physician of Mason, this State. Two children have blest this union — Charles, who is a promising youth of fifteen years of age, and Robert, a merry lad of five years.
Dr. Ferguson is a member of the Farmers’ Alliance and is proud of belonging to the Agricultural (484) fraternity. He is the owner of two farms, one comprising one hundred and twenty acres on section 15, and one of forty acres on section 33, in Meridian Township. These farms are well improved and used principally for stock-raising.
In partnership with his brother, he is interested in raising standard bred trotting horses. They have a private one-half mile track on which their horses are trained. Dr. Ferguson owns twenty-seven well-bred animals and is also interested with his brother in several more.
He also has a half interest in the general mercantile business of John Ferguson & Sons of Okemos and strange to say finds time in which to engage in the practice of his profession in which he has gained an enviable reputation.
Our subject comes from a family of Scotch descent. His father, John Ferguson, who is a retired farmer and merchant, was born in Ontario, Canada, in 1816, and came to the United States when about twenty-two years old. He located in Delhi Township in 1841 since which time he has resided in the county. He has passed through all the hardships incident to pioneer life, but has been prospered in business. He has been honored by election to various township offices and is well known in Ingham County.
His father, also named John, was a native of Vermont and was. born in 1740. He removed to Canada in in early day. Robert, the great-grandfather of our subject, was also a native of Vermont, but went to Canada.