Descendants of Captain Arthur Fenner

Harold Albert Fenner


[b 5 Jan. 1894; d 15 Nov. 1978] Harold Albert Fenner m 1st Ruth Dixon [b 29 Mar. 1896 at Fort Dodge, IA; d 1 Jan. 1933 at North Platte, NE]; m 2nd Lola Swancutt [1903-1940]; m 3rd Marta Imboden [b 22 Feb. 1905; d Mar. 1971], daughter of Henry J. Imboden and Katie C. Blake. Harold was a doctor of Osteopathy, and maintained the Fenner Hospital at Hobbs, New Mexico.

Longtime Hobbs Doctor, H.A. Fenner, Dead at 84

A resident of Hobbs for 43 years, Dr. Harold Albert Fenner, Sr., 84, was dead on arrival at Llano Estacado Medical Center after a seizure at his home about noon yesterday. He had been in ill health for about two years and had been under nursing care at his home for the last six months. 

A member of a family of medical doctors and the father of two doctors of medicine who have gone into specialized practice, Fenner had chosen the osteopathic profession, and was a charter member of the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons, and had served as president of the Osteopathic Association. He held the oldest AOA's license, and at the time he was honored for 25 years of practice in New Mexico in 1972, he was the AOA's oldest man in active practice.

He continued active practice, at least on a limited scale, until about a year ago, despite the protest of his family. His home and office complex, a rock structure surrounded by plantings of cacti and succulents at the corner of East Snyder and North Selman, is one of the landmarks of Hobbs. He and his wife Marta, who died in 1971, hauled riverbed rock and did some of the construction and landscaping themselves. "He could build anything," a member of his family said this morning.

Dr. Fenner is survived by two sons, Dr. Hal A. Fenner, Jr. of Hobbs, an orthopedist and Dr. Don Fenner of Huntington Harbour, California, a psychiatrist; a daughter, Mrs. Pat McAdams, of Milwaukie, Oregon; and eight grandchildren. Funeral will be at 2 p.m. Monday at Griffin Funeral Home Chapel with the Reverend Amos Gaume of Saint Christopher's Episcopal Church officiating. Burial will be in Memory Gardens Cemetery.

Fenner was born and grew up in Almond, New York, where his father was a doctor. When his father died in 1911, he and his mother, Alveretta (Barrett) Fenner, moved to California. In June, 1915, he was graduated from the College of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons in Los Angeles, and did post-graduate work at the same school. He began practice in North Platte, Nebraska. He once said he did not know why he chose Nebraska, that he just "looked at a map and decided." In 1917, he opened the first osteopathic hospital in Nebraska. A few years later, one of the nurses he hired was Marta Imboden, whom he married in 1923.

At his 65-bed hospital, he trained both interns and nurses, and one of the marvels of the place was a new discovery, air conditioning. Between 1918 and 1941, Dr. Fenner taught surgery at the Denver Post-Graduate College. At the outbreak of World War II, the Army requisitioned his hospital for the duration, so he bought a trailer, loaded up his equipment and his family, and traveled for a year and a half.

Dr. Gies, who owned a hospital in Hobbs, New Mexico, invited Dr. Fenner to the city of Hobbs in 1940, and urged him to move here, which he finally did in 1943. Dr. Fenner bought the old Regan Hotel building, added to it, and opened a 25-bed hospital at 100 West Taylor, the present site of the abandoned First National Bank Drive-In facility. Unable to obtain sufficient help to maintain the hospital, which by that time had shrunk to 10-bed size. Dr. Fenner sold the building in 1960, and continued his practice at home.

Hobbs News Sun, 16 November 1978

1. Harold Albert Jr. [b 12 Apr. 1924]; m 1st Shirley McNeil, m 2nd Joyce. 
2. Patricia Midge [b October 1933] m Valene McAdams in 1952, had Ronald “Ronnie” [b 4 Mar. 1956] and “Reckie” [b 22 Feb. 1957].
3. Donald Gary [b 8 Dec. 1938], psychiatrist.

Arthur | Thomas | Thomas | William | Stephen | Isaac | Andrew | Harold

1. Harold's memorial at, no. 49441743