Born 555 Houston Street, New York, N.Y. Following family custom he was given a geographical name: "Mississippi." (Eliza Catherine Dunscombe Colt notes).
Edward served in the Union Army during the Civil War as a Captain in Company K of the Harris Light Cavalry, Seventh United States Cavalry (New York in the War of the Rebellion, 1861-1865. Albany : J.B. Lyon Co., 3rd ed., pg. 751-765).
Practiced as a physician in Colorado Springs, Colorado from 1896 to 1905. Moved to Reno in 1905 and was a licensed physician there. Moved to Tuscarora, Nevada about 1906 or early 1907. Moved to Midas, Nevada in 1907 with interest in gold rush - he was one of the principal players in starting the rush. Delivered several babies and attended to ill people there but probably more interested in gold than medicine. Tried to promote a town site called "Dunscomb" (adjacent to Midas) but it never succeeded. Supposedly had an opium habit that made him walk 45 miles a day for his "fix." When he moved to Midas he was joined by his great niece, Birda Holbert. She worked with him as a nurse until she married Charles Warren. They had a son and three daughters. One still residing as of 1999 in Reno, named Desda Warren Wood. Ms. Wood is the source for much of this unconfirmed background material. Birda had a step sister named Desda after whom Desda Warren was named. Desda Warren Wood thinks Edward was related on her Aunt Desda's side rather than on her mother's. Midas Cemetery is small (23-40 graves) most no longer marked, including Edward's. (Declarations by Don Bennett in e-mails November 1999). (Reference to Dunscomb town site from Who named it? : history of Elko County place names by Edna Patterson).
He was physician at birth of his great niece Desda Maud Warren, 4/5/1912 (Desda Maud Warren birth certificate, Midas, Nevada). She was the daughter of Charles L. Warren and Birda Ruth Holbert.
R.L. Polk & Co.'s Colorado Springs, Colorado City and Manitou City Directory 1905-1906 states Edward & Margaret "bds Alta Vista Hotel" - perhaps indicating they boarded there.
"By October 26, 1907, Dr. E. Dunscomb's professional card appeared in the "Tuscarora Mining News" reading:
Dr. E. DUNSCOMB
University of New York
Physician and Surgeon
More interested in mining than medicine with discovery of ore at Midas, Dr. Dunscomb left Tuscarora and moved to the Midas area. The town of Dunscomb, laid out two and one half miles south of Midas, was a product of Dr. Dunscomb's mind. The town did little but get off the drawing board plat, and with little luck in mining and town promotion Dr. Dunscomb left northeast Nevada (Patterson, Edna B. Sagebrush doctors, 1972, pg. 81).
His death certificate lists numerous errors, including birth date and place, mother's first name, father's birthplace.
His Civil War pension application, dated 1915, lists no wife and no children, possibly indicating they were married after this date. It is curious that his 1915 pension document states he has no wife, yet his obituary shortly after indicates he is married.
Following e-mail received 9/17/200?:
I did see in your research where his son, Edward, is buried in Colorado. FYI, there was a mine claim dispute (US Supreme Court Report, Vol 37 page 484) involving an Edward Dunscomb and Mr Seaver vs. the Johnston Claim of Smuggler Mountain in Aspen Colorado, dated 1880. Is there a connection? If his son was in mining, perhaps that's the connection. I find it all so interesting.