Walter Channing, an American physician and professor of medicine, was born on April 15th, 1786 in Newport, RI.

Walter Channing was the grandson of William Ellery (who was a signer of the Declaration of Independence) the brother of preacher William Ellery Channing (founder of Channing Memorial Church in Newport) and of fellow Harvard professor (of Rhetoric), Edward Tyrrel Channing. He was also the father of the poet William Ellery Channing.

Walter Channing’s most significant contribution, and what he may be best known for, is his advocacy of anesthesia in childbirth and for being the first American physician (in 1847) to use anesthesia during childbirth.

Channing was the first professor of obstetrics at Harvard University (in 1815) and was co-editor of the New England Journal of Medicine and Surgeryand wrote the classic Treatise on Etherization in Childbirth in 1848.

Channing’s first wife, neé Barbara Higginson Perkins died of consumption in 1822. In 1831 he married Eliza Wainwright who died three years later in childbirth.

Walter Channing died at the age of 90 on July 27th, 1876 in Brookline, MA.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What's Up Newp. He was born and raised in Rhode Island and graduated from Coventry High School. He serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and serves on the Board of Directors for Potter League for Animals. Ryan also is currently the Senior Editor - North America for Mountain News, publisher of OnTheSnow. Ryan is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).