Doctor and philanthropist (1898-1987)
Dr. Sembly spent his entire medical career practicing in Salisbury, where he was also a community leader in every sense.
Dr. George Herbert Sembly was born on July 22, 1898 in Rider Wood, Maryland to parents Edward and Francis J. Sembly.1 George was the oldest of his eight siblings, Bertha, Margaret, Clarence, Elmer, Gladis, Ruth, Richard, Irene.2 Sembly married his wife Mae Jones sometime in the year 1930.3
In 1917 George Sembly was registered in the draft during WWI and again during WWII in 1942. In 1918 he graduated from Douglass Colored High4 and Training School of Baltimore5. Before practicing medicine Sembly was a high school teacher. Sembly went to college at Howard University in Washington D.C. in 1918 as an undergrad in the department of College Art and Sciences6. In his second year there he moved to the Junior College division in the school.7 In the year 1923 Sembly was a third-year medical student at Howard.8 After his time at Howard, Sembly interned at Tuskegee Institute in Alabama where he passed the state board examinations in Alabama, Maryland, and New York9. Also in Tuskegee, Sembly served his internship in the U.S. Veterans Hospital.10
The Sembly’s were living on 504 E. Church St. in Salisbury Maryland where he practiced medicine there for over sixty years11. In his Salisbury office George had his wife Mae as the receptionist. In between his time practicing medicine in Salisbury, in March of 1941, The Colored Citizens Drive Committee chaired by Dr. Sembly donated over $1,000,000 to the Peninsula General Hospital and in March of 1945, Dr. Sembly was named one of the drive leaders in the Men’s division of the local “Colored” Red Cross.12 Dr. Sembly ran for the Democratic seat for city council of Salisbury Maryland in March of 1952.13
Dr. George Herbert Sembly was honored twice by the Wicomico Medical Society for his years of local service in both 197715 and 198616. During the ceremony in 1977, Dr. Sembly was honored for his “outstanding contribution to his patients, medical community, and profession during his over fifty years of service.” Honoring Dr. Sembly at the ceremony was Theophane Loughrey, President of the Wicomico Medical Group and Robert Kiley the executive director17.
Dr. Sembly was a member of the Academy of Family Practitioners, the American Medical Association, the Medical and Chirurgical Faculty of Maryland, and the Wicomico County Medical Society. Dr. Sembly at the time was a member of the courtesy staff of Peninsula General Hospital and was beginning his sixtieth year of practicing medicine in Salisbury. At the ceremony Dr. Sembly was congratulated by Dr. Allen W. Tustin, President of the Wicomico County Medical Society and Dr. James A. Cockey, program chairman of the event.
Dr. George Herbert Sembly died on May 27, 1987, at the age of 88 in Salisbury, Maryland18. The couple at the time were living on 400 E. Church St. Surviving was his wife Mae, his three brothers: Elmer, Clearence, and Richard, his three sisters: Bertha, Margaret, and Gladys, and several nieces and nephews.
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