H. Laing Gordon qualified as Bachelor of Medicine (MB) and Master of Surgery (CM) at Edinburgh in 1889. By 1897 he resided in Middelburg, Cape Colony. In that year he contributed a brief article on "The high altitude climate" to a book by W.C. Scholtz*, The South African climate..., which dealt mainly with the country as a health resort. He must have left the Cape Colony that same year, for in January 1898 he was listed as living in London as a member of the (second) South African Medical Association. A book on medical history by him, Sir James Young Simpson and chloroform (1811-1870), was published in London in 1897. During the years 1899 to 1905 he published several medical papers in British journals. He also wrote The modern mother; a guide to girlhood, motherhood, and infancy (London, not dated); by the time a subsequent edition appeared (New York, 1909) he had qualified as Doctor of Medicine (MD).
In 1911 Gordon was back in South Africa, living in Musina (Limpopo). Here he wrote a pamphlet, The prevention of malaria in Northern Transvaal, which was issued by the South African Anti-malarial Association and published in Johannesburg. At the time of a subsequent edition, published in 1913, he had already left Musina.
In 1925 Gordon settled in Kenya, where he appears to have practiced as a psychiatrist. He published papers on mental problems among Europeans in that country (1928) and the diagnosis of mental retardation in Africans (1930), and was a leading figure in the eugenics movement in Kenya.