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Henry County, Indiana
Genealogy and History

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From "The biographical encyclopedia of Ohio of the nineteenth century. 1876

BECK, JOHN CRAFTON, M. D., Physician, was born in Vienna, Scott county, Indiana, January 19th, 1822. His Father, Samuel Beck, was third in descent from the emigrant, James Beck, first surveyor of Prince George county Maryland. James Beck was cousin to John Beck, once governor of Luxemburg. This family is traceable down to the mailed horseman of the same name who joined the fortunes of Coeur-de-Lion in the Crusades. Dr. Beck began the study of medicine at the age or eighteen, having until this time worked on the farm and in the carpenter's trade. He commenced practice before reaching his majority in Azalia, Bartholomew county, Indiana; entered the Medical College of Ohio, at Cincinnati, in 1848, and graduated in the spring of 1849, his previous four years' practice enabling him to dispense with one course of lectures. In 1847, before entering the medical college, he was married to Vashti Davis, daughter of Ransom Davis, of Newburn, Indiana. After graduating, Dr. Beck located in Cadiz, Henry county, of the same State, where he soon made a large and profitable practice. In 1858 he accepted the Professorship of Medical Jurisprudence in the Cincinnati College of Medicine and Surgery, and was afterwards elected by the Board of Trustees to fill the Chair of Anatomy and Physiology in the same institution. This position he resigned about the beginning of the rebellion to accept the appointment of Surgeon in the army. In 1862 he had the pleasure, though a noncombatant, of encountering and capturing, near Murfreesboro, Tennessee, the rebel Captain Charles M. Beckwith. He served in various regiments, as Surgeon in the field, until the end of the war. After the war he opened his office in Newport, Kentucky. At this time he served two years as President of the Newport Board of Education. During his residence in Newport, Dr. Beck made three unsuccessful races, as the candidate of his party, for the Legislature. In 1870 he again returned to Cincinnati, where he has since devoted himself solely to his profession. He is in the prime of life and possessed of a vigorous constitution, and, unlike too many in his noble profession, is a close student, keeping fully up with the medical literature of the day, to which to he is frequently a contributor. For several years he edited, with recognized ability, the Cincinnati Medical and Surgical News, and has just published his "Notes on the Early Settlement and History of Bartholomew County, Indiana." He is a Royal Arch Mason; also a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and was originally a member of the Christian or Disciples' Church, preaching as an evangelist in that church, until in the early days of his settlement in Cincinnati, when he became a convert to the Roman Catholic faith and entered that church.

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