Date Original



This collection includes a typescript copy of "Big Doc's Girl," a scrapbook of clippings of articles concerning Medearis and her book, the September 1942 issue of Redbook, containing the novel, and the Saturday Review of Literature, Deep South Issue, September 19, 1942.

Biographical/Historical Note

Mary Medearis is the author of "Big Doc’s Girl," an autobiographical novel published by J.B. Lippincott Company in 1942. Mary was born in North Little Rock, Arkansas, on May 31, 1915, to Robert and Myrtle Hendricks Medearis. Her father practiced medicine while her mother taught piano. Several years after graduating from North Little Rock High School in 1933, Mary moved to New York where she attended the Juilliard School. A creative writing class at Columbia University led to “The Death of a Country Doctor,” an autobiographical short story about the death of her father. A contest win, which included publication by Story magazine in 1940, led to a Lippincott contract for a novel-length version of the story. After the publication of "Big Doc’s Girl" in 1942, the book received critical and popular success. The book was condensed in Redbook and translated into several foreign languages. A television adaptation in 1957 featured Gene Hackman. After a divorce, Mary returned to Arkansas in 1975 where she became the founding director of the Southwest Arkansas Regional Archives and authored "Washington, Arkansas: History of the Southwest Trail." Mary moved to Saratoga Springs, New York, in 1996.

Physical Description

Document, 8.5" x 11"

Geographical Area






Resource Type



Mary Medearis materials, MS.000146


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

Mary Medearis materials, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


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United States History