Duhig was born on 22 November 1889 in Brisbane, son of Thaddeus Duhig (also known as Edward), carpenter, and his wife Ellen, née Shine. His uncle was the famous Brisbane Catholic Archbishop, James Duhig. It was a kinship which would haunt the older relative.
In 1908 he entered the University of Sydney as a language student, but in 1909 he changed to medicine (M.B., Ch.M., 1914). After serving as a medical officer in the Australian Imperial Force, demobilized as a major in 1919, Duhig undertook postgraduate work in pathology at King's College Hospital, London. On his return to Queensland, he established pathology laboratories at the Mater Misericordiae Hospital in 1920 and the Brisbane General Hospital in 1924. He also practised as a pathologist in Wickham Terrace.
Duhig’s contribution to medical science in Queensland is very significant. He was a campaigner for the establishment of a medical school in Queensland, and became the first Professor of pathology at the University of Queensland in 1938-1947. Duhig founded the Red Cross Blood Bank in Queensland. His reputation extended beyond the state. He was the Australian President of the Association of Clinical Pathologists and was involved in the establishment of the College of Pathologists of Australia.
Duhig was an associate of Albert Longman, not only through the Queensland Rationalist Society, but also due to contributed dissections of the stone-fish venom apparatus to the Queensland Museum. Duhig himself became the President and Patron of the Queensland Rationalist Society.
Duhig was not only a scientific authority, his intellectual endeavours extended into the arts and humanities sphere. He was President of the Royal Queensland Art Society for ten years. He also had a large personal art collection which he left to the University of Queensland. Surprisingly he was a co-founder of the Brisbane Repertory Theatre Society. He actually won the Laura Bogue Luffman prize with his one-act play, The Ruling Passion, published in 1935. Duhig is even known for his contribution to C. B. Christesen’s Meanjin Papers.
See James Vincent Duhig on Scatterplot Matrix.
A. C. Leggett, 'Duhig, James Vincent (1889–1963)', Australian Dictionary of Biography, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://adb.anu.edu.au/biography/duhig-james-vincent-6035/text10317, published in hardcopy 1981, accessed online 18 September 2014.
James Vincent Duhig (1889–1963)
Professor of Pathology, and Secular Rationalist