Named after Christian County in Kentucky through the influence of emigrants from that county.
Established February 15, 1839 as Dane County (Laws, 1839, p. 104). Name changed to Christian County in 1840.
|JOSIAH H. DODGE, M. D., who enjoys a large and lucrative practice
in Pana, being recognized as one of the leading physicians of this part of
the county, was born in Montpelier, Vt., April 26, 1821,
and is a son of Winthrop and Luceba (Dodge) Dodge. His parents, though of the same name, were not of the same family.
They were natives of the Green Mountain State, and when our subject was a lad of ten years they emigrated to Ohio, locating in the Western Reserve, where they spent their remaining days.
The Doctor remained upon the home farm until nineteen years of age, but his tastes led him to seek some other pursuit than that of agriculture, and he began reading medicine in Ohio with Dr. W. Streeter, now of Cleveland. He afterwards pursued a course of study in the Medical College of Willoughby, Ohio [ed., formerly Willoughby University of Lake Erie, now Ohio State University College of Medicine and Public Health, and then engaged in practice with his old preceptor for a year.
Thinking that the West was a better field for the labors of a young and ambitious physician, he removed to Indiana in 1840, and engaged in teaching and in practicing for two years. In 1844, during the high water, he took two flatboats, loaded with pork, down the river to New Orleans, and then went to the lead mines of Galena [ed., Illinois]. He was engaged in mining at Shellsburg [ed., probably Shellsburg, Iowa], Mineral Point [ed., probably Mineral Point, Wisconsin] and Dodgeville [ed., probably Dodgeville, Wisconsin] for four years with most excellent success, and then returned to Ohio on a visit. After a short time, however, he started to Galena by way of St. Louis.
While in the latter city, the Doctor went up to the lecture rooms of the McDowell College, and meeting an old friend he there remained and attended a course of lectures, in the winter of 1848-49, graduating the following spring.
The cholera was then in progress, and the Doctor went to Vandalia, Ill., where he arrived with only two five-franc pieces in his pocket. These he paid out to a man who drove him to Bowling Green,
Dr. Dodge there remained for five years, enjoying an extensive practice, and then located at Oconee, where he practiced his profession for two years, and also engaged in merchandising as a member of the firm of Roberts & Dodge. He then sold to his partner and established a separate store, which he continued for three years.
In the fall of 1857, the Doctor came to Pana, where he opened a store and office, but the financial panic followed, and he was forced to sell his store; however, he had gained a good practice in the mean time. In 1862, he was appointed Assistant Surgeon for the Fifty-fourth Illinois Infantry, with Maj. York as superior, and went with the regiment to Washington and Tennessee, under Gens. Davis and Dodge, of Iowa. He was with the troops at the battle of Merriweather's Ferry, but in the fall of 1862 he was compelled to resign on account of ill health. He assisted in recruiting two companies of the regiment at Pana.
In 1852, in Bowling Green, Ky., the Doctor was united in marriage with Miss Mary A. McClanahan, who died September 9, 1892, having been his faithful companion and helpmate for forty years. Five children were born unto them: Eugenia, wife of Jesse Reese, of Pana; Louisa, wife of David Owens, an operator of Mattoon; Laura, wife of J. O. Gurney, superintendent of the roundhouse of Pana; Josephine, wife of A. H. Miller, a machinist of Sedalia, Mo.; and Josiah, who died in his twenty-second year. The Doctor was married May 4, 1893, to Miss Octava Bateman, of Pana, a friend of his earlier years.
On his return from the war, Dr. Dodge resumed practice in Pana, and for five years was engaged in partnership with Dr. Armstrong. Later Dr. Deming, now of Chicago, became his partner, and the connection was continued until about live years since. For the past three years, Dr. Dodge has been engaged in office practice, treating chronic diseases.
His professional career has been one of excellent success. He possesses both skill and ability, and has done all in his power to perfect himself in his chosen vocation. He has ever been a close student of the science, and his deep researches have placed him in the front rank among his professional brethren, a position which is justly merited.
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