IAGenWeb.org Iowa in the Great War


Harry E. Ransom, M.D.


HARRY E. RANSOM, M. D., has been engaged in the practice of his profession in Iowa since 1915, save for the interval of his overseas service in the World war, and he is now one of the representative physicians and surgeons in the City of Des Moines, with office headquarters in the Iowa Building.

Doctor Ransom was born on the parental home farm near Avalon, Rock County, Wisconsin, October 16, 1884, and is a son of Ensign H. and Nellie Marie (Verbach) Ransom, who still maintains their home in the Badger State, where both were born and reared. Ensign H. Ransom having been born near Avalon, Rick County, and his wife at Johnstown Center. Hubbell Ransom and George Verbach, respective paternal and maternal grandfathers of Doctor Ransom, were numbered among the sterling pioneer and substantial farmers of Wisconsin. The active career of Ensign H. Ransom has been one of close and successful alliance with farm industry in Rock County, Wisconsin, where he is still the owner of a valuable farm estate and where he is an influential and progressive citizen who commands unqualified popular esteem. He is a stalwart in the local ranks of the Republican party, and in addition to having served as a member of the Board of Commissioners of his native county he gave two terms of service as county sheriff. He is affiliated with the Masonic fraternity and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and both he and his wife are zealous members of the Congregational Church. Dr. Harry E., of this review having been the first born of their five children.  After completing his studies in the high school at Clinton Junction, in his native county, Dr. Harry E. Ransom followed the dictates of his youthful ambition by entering the medical department of Marquette University in the City of Milwaukee, and in this institution he was graduated as a member of the class of 1914. After receiving his degree of Doctor of Medicine he further fortified himself in the valuable clinical experience he gained while serving as interne in the hospital maintained by the Illinois Steel Company at Gary, Indiana, and in the Englewood Hospital, Chicago. In November, 1915, he engaged in the private practice of his profession at Valley Junction, Polk County, Iowa, where he continued his practice until the nation became involved in the World war, when he subordinated all personal interests to the call of patriotism and enlisted for service in the Medical Corps of the United States Army. He was thereafter stationed at Camp Grant, Illinois, and, with the rank of first lieutenant, he accompanied his unit overseas, where he continued in active service thirteen months and was advanced to the grade of captain, which rank he retains as a member of the Reserve Medical Corps of the United States Army. After the close of the war and the reception of his honorable discharge Doctor Ranson returned to Polk County, Iowa, where he has since continued in active general practice in the City of Des Moines and where he has made such record of success as to mark him as one of the representative physicians and surgeons of Iowa's capital city. In his practice he gives major attention to internal medicine. The Doctor has membership in the Des Moines Academy of Medicine and the local Medicine Study Club, of which latter he was president in 1928. He gave three years of service as secretary of the Polk County Medical Society, and in addition to his membership in this organization he is a member of the Iowa State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. He has held since 1923 the office of assistant health commissioner of Des Moines.

Doctor Ransom is found loyally arrayed in the ranks of the Republican party, and he is affiliated with the Masonic fraternity, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, the Phi Beta Pi college fraternity and the American Legion.

In January, 1926, Doctor Ransom was united in marriage with Miss Gladys Marie McMurray, of Iowa Falls, where her father, J. H. McMurray, is engaged in the shoe business and where she was reared and educated. Doctor and Mrs. Ransom have a son, Ensign, who was born November 20, 1927, and who was named in honor of his paternal grandfather. Doctor and Mrs. Ransom are members of the Methodist Church.

~ source: A Narrative History of The People of Iowa, Edgar Rubey Harlan, LL. B., A. M., Chicago and New York, 1931

~ transcribed and contributed by:  Debbie  Clough Gerischer, Iowa History Project