Dr. L H. Pirkle Biography and Photos


Dr. Lewis Henry Pirkle was born in Alabama, but in his teenage years his family moved to Lincoln Parish near Ruston.  Pirkle graduated from Louisiana Tech in 1900 and Tulane University Medical School, graduating in 1904.   The young doctor set up his practice in Shreveport, beginning an association with another young doctor, Thomas Williams.  Their association would last until their deaths in the 1940’s.

Pirkle would specialize in obstetrical and gynecological surgery.   In 1924, the two doctors opened the Tri-State Sanitarium, the precursor to Willis-Knighton Health System.   Like many WK doctors then and now, Pirkle was deeply committed to his church and community owning two farms where he raised Hereford cattle.  He served for more than a decade on the Caddo Parish School Board including four years as President.

In an appreciation published a few days, after his death from a heart attack at his home in 1948, The Shreveport Journal said, “Dr. Pirkle was a good and useful citizen whose passing is a distinct community loss”.  He was 75.

Location in Museum

Tri-State Sanitarium Exhibit


Early 20th Century


Photos come from Pirkle's family as well as Byrd High School Yearbooks and the Shreveport Times and Journal
  • Prikle as school board member
  • L.H. Pirkle ca. 1920s
  • Pirkle with wife
  • Pirkle on his farm
  • L.H. Pirkle 1920s
  • The_Times_Fri__Nov_19__1926_