Sir William Watson Cheyne

Many of Sir William Watson Cheyne's written works are now available as a free download in PDF format here.

            Front page
       An introduction to the website
     An introduction to Sir William Watson Cheyne
   Bacteria and antiseptics
 In Lister's footsteps

Sir Watson
Joint Pain

In the early years of the 20th century when many small rural communities in Britain had little or no resident medical provision, Fetlar, one of Shetland's remotest island communities, was home to one the most eminent surgeons of the Victorian and Edwardian eras. "Sir Watson", as he was known in Fetlar, grew up at the West Manse on the island. He was known to the medical world as Sir William Watson Cheyne, First Baronet of Leagarth, Fetlar, K.C.M.G., C.B., M.A., M.B., C.M., F.R.C.S., F.R.S., L.L.D. (Edin.), D.Sc. (Oxon).

"Sir Watson" was House Surgeon, and later successor to Lord Lister, and worked closely with him on the pioneering development of antiseptic surgery in the late 19th century. Until he retired and moved back to Fetlar in 1920, he conducted a tireless crusade to ensure that Lister's methods became a fundamental part of surgical practice in the 20th century, often against a background of scepticm and lapses in good practice.

The national exhibition at Fetlar Interpretive Centre and multi-media resource that this website is part of, received the prestigious Museum of the Year Award in the Educational Initiative category at a ceremony in Edinburgh on Monday 6th November 2000. Project Co-ordinator, Jane Mack, was there to receive the award from HRH Princess Anne.

© Fetlar Museum Trust,
Fetlar Interpretive Centre,

Beach of Houbie, Fetlar, Shetland, ZE2 9DJ.
Contact us by email Tel: 01957 733206