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Fayette County, Iowa  

 History Directory

Past and Present of Fayette County Iowa, 1910

Author: G. Blessin


B. F. Bowen & Company, Indianapolis, Indiana


Vol. I, Biographical Sketches



~Page 1170~


Frederick Becker M.D.

(Photo included in source book)


The Germans who come to America do not usually enter the professions. Their tastes lead them into commercial pursuits, such as hotels and restaurants, and, in the cities, dry goods and other branches of storekeeping and investments in real estate. Many become farmers and, as is well known, they have no superiors in this line. The states of the Central West and Northwest are especially indebted to the German immigration and they are found by thousands in Wisconsin, Iowa, the Dakotas and Minnesota. Occasionally, however, Germans become physicians and lawyers and when they do it is after the usual careful preparation which they bring to all their work. This sketch deals with a man who became a doctor in early life and for more than a half century has been identified with the West, especially Iowa. Frederick Becker was born in Gutenberg, Germany, in 1838 and spent the first fourteen years of his life in his native place.

His parents were George and Elizabeth Becker, the former for many years proprietor of a large landed estate. He was educated at Marburg University for a minister, but abandoned this calling on account of his father's death. During the Napoleonic wars in 1813-14, when sixteen years old, he enlisted under the German banner, furnishing his own equipment. His son attended the public schools in Germany during his boyhood and came to America in 1852. Locating at Cleveland, Ohio, he began the study of medicine at a medical college in that city. After spending four years there, he entered the Homeopathic Medical College of Missouri at St. Louis and spent the years 1874-75 in that institution. After obtaining his degree, he returned to Taylorsville, Fayette county, Iowa, where he had put in his time before going to the Missouri college. He practiced a while in this town, but in 1875 went to Clermont and carried on his profession until the death of his wife in 1896, since when he has practiced only incidentally. In 1861 he was elected township clerk of Fairfield township and held that position and the office of township trustee for several years. In 1889 he was a member of the state board of health and for some years was president of the Homeopathic Medical Association of the state. He filled other places of honor and trust, including president of the state board of medical examiners, president of state board of health, mayor of Clermont and chairman of the Fayette county Republican central committee.


In 1859 Doctor Becker married Sophia Miller, a native of Germany, who came to the United States with her brother. They have three children: Carl F., George A., and Fredrick J.. Doctor Becker is a member of the Lutheran church and throughout his life has been a stanch and enthusiastic Republican, following that party during the exciting period of its organization and through the trying ordeals of the Civil war. It is a proud boast of the Doctor that he cast his first vote for Lincoln in Fayette county. He has always been active in party affairs and long one of the local leaders in the county. He has been a useful and influential citizen in various ways in religious circles, political affairs and matters relating to his profession. In this he obtained more than a local reputation, his name at one time being familiar in medical circles throughout the state, he having held the professorship of materia medica in the college at Iowa City.



~transcribed by Cheryl Walker for Fayette County IAGenWeb


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