As the Czech ambassador to the United States, H. E. Petr Gandalovič noted in his foreword to this book that Míla Rechcígl has written a monumental work representing a culmination of his life achievement as a historian of Czech America.
The Encyclopedia of Bohemian and Czech American Biography is a unique and unparalleled publication. The enormity of this undertaking is reflected in the fact that it covers a universe, starting a few decades after the discovery of the New World, through the escapades and significant contributions of Bohemian Jesuits and Moravian brethren in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the mass migration of the Czechs after the revolutionary year of 1848, and up to the early years of the twentieth century and the influx of refugees from Nazism and communism.
The encyclopedia has been planned as a representative, a comprehensive and authoritative reference tool, encompassing over 7,500 biographies.
This prodigious and unparalleled encyclopedic vade mecum, reflecting enduring contributions of notable Americans with Czech roots, is not only an invaluable tool for all researchers and students of Czech American history but is also a carte blanche for the Czech Republic, which considers Czech Americans as their own and as a part of its magnificent cultural history.
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Encyclopedia of Bohemian and Czech-American Biography
By Miloslav Rechcigl Jr.
AuthorHouseCopyright © 2016 Miloslav Rechcigl, Jr.
All rights reserved.
A. Pioneer Physicians
Leopold Adler (1828-d.), b. Prachatice, Bohemia, was the first Czech physician in Milwaukee, where he practiced s. 1862.
James Anderson (1752-1820), b. MD, desc. f. Augustine Herman. Physician trained under his father and at Philadelphia and Edinburgh. He returned to Maryland and opened an extensive medical practice at Chestertown. He was actively engaged in practicing medicine for more than 30 years.
Frantiek J. Arzt (1843-d.), b. Ceská Trebová, Bohemia, who studied medicine in Vienna, in 1866 arrived in America and initially settled in Cedar Rapids, IA. In 1867 he came to St. Louis, MO, where he opened his medical practice.
Samuel Siegfried Karl Ritter von Basch (1837-1905), b. Prague, Bohemia, was a physician who was best known as the personal physician of Emperor Maximilian of Mexico and the inventor of the blood pressure meter (also known as sphygmomanometer). Basch was educated at Charles University in Prague and the University of Vienna. In 1857 he studied chemistry at the laboratory of Ernst Wilhelm von Brücke in Vienna, and five years later began the practice of medicine. In 1864, Basch was appointed chief surgeon of the military hospital at Puebla, Mexico. Soon after that, he was appointed as Maximilian's personal physician. Basch remained with Maximilian until the Emperor's execution by firing squad at Querétaro on 19 June 1867. When Maximilian realized that a few days at the most would decide his fate, he commissioned Basch to keep daily records of all that happened. When the Emperor and his entourage were betrayed to Benito Juárez by Colonel Miguel Lopez on 14 May 1867, Basch rushed to saddle his horse, but was at once overpowered by the Mexicans. Basch lost most of his memoranda, saving only cursory notes. After the execution of Maximilian, he returned to Austria with the Emperor's body, arriving on 26 November 1867 on the Elizabeth. In 1870 Basch was appointed lecturer on experimental pathology at the University of Vienna, and in 1877 assistant professor. He was ennobled by Emperor Franz Joseph I of Austria for his share in Maximilian's enterprise.
Wenzel Blumrich (1812-1862), b. Frydlant, Bohemia, a physician, settled in Grand Rapids, MI in 1848, where he opened a medical practice. He was a highly educated man, proficient in Latin, German, French and Spanish.
Samuel 'Semmi' Brandeis (1819-1899), b. Prague, trained as a physician at Univ. of Vienna, had a flourishing practice in Madison, IN (s. 1849), at a time when cholera was prevalent there. In 1852 he removed with his family to Louisville Kentucky. In 1860 he occupied the chair of Clinical Medicine in the Kentucky School of Medicine but discontinued that work at the outbreak of the Civil War.
Jacob George Bruckman (1800-1885), b. Lostice, Moravia, was a physician, trained in Prague, where he graduated in 1831. He immigrated to the US in 1840, settling in Salisbury, Somerset Co., PA. He practiced medicine there for twenty-seven years. Thence he removed to Monroe Co., PA. He married Sarah Lindeman, with whom he had four children. His daughter Rebecca married Dr. Americus Enfield.
Philip Bruckman, b. Plzen, Bohemia a physician, immigrated to America around 1842, settling in NYC, where he opened a medical practice. He apparently had a large Bohemian clientele. He was married to Henrietta (née Kahn) Bruckman(1810-1888), also from Bohemia.
Anton Hugo Chládek (1796-1873), born in Zámrsk, Bohemia, studied medicine in Prague and Vienna, was a pioneer American physician. He practiced medicine in Manitowoc, WI, Cedar Rapids, IA and Chicago.IL.
F. A. Deschauer (1857-1900), b. Chicago, IL, of Bohemian ancestry, was a dentist. He became associated with his uncle, Dr. Joseph Deschauer, one of the pioneer and leading dentists in the city. At the time of his death, he had been practicing in his native city for 28 years.
Joseph Deschauer (1822-1890), b. Cheb, Bohemia, was a pioneer dentist. His early years, until he reached the age of fourteen, were spent in the public schools of Cheb, and after passing through the high school, he entered the Polytechnic University, from which he graduated in his seventeenth year. After spending several years in travel through Germany and Switzerland, perfecting himself in his profession, he returned to Vienna, and then began the study of dentistry under the direction of Dr. Carabeli, of Vienna, with whom he remained three years, until the agitation incident upon the revolution in 1848 compelled him to leave that city. Returning home, he practiced until 1856, when he came to Chicago, where he had since resided. At the great fire he lost what he had accumulated, but since then again acquired a fortune.
Anthony Michael Dignowity (1810-1875, born nr. Kutna Hora, Bohemia, came to US in 1832 and read medicine at Natchez, MS and Cincinnati, OH. After moving to Talequah, Indian Territory, he practiced there and then moved to Illinois Falls, AK. In 1846 he volunteered for service in the Mexican War and then practiced in San Antonio, TX.
Washington Emil Fischel (1850-1914), b. St. Louis, MO, of Bohemian ancestry, received medical education at St. Louis Medical Coll and Univ. of Prague, Vienna and Berlin. He was in private practice in St. Louis (s.1907). He also held the position of prof, of clinical medicine at Washington Univ. Medical Coll. (s. 1871). He was one of the founders of St. Louis Skin and Cancer Hospital.
Jacob A. Flexner (1857-1934), b. Louisville, KY, of Bohemian ancestry, was a graduate of Louisville Medical Coll. He was a pioneer in medical practice. He was the first physician in his county to apply diphteria antitoxin as soon as it was discovered.
John A. Habenicht (1840-1918), b. Caslav, Bohemia, was educated at Univ. of Prague and later at Leipzig. He engaged in medical practice and in 1869 came to Chicago, Illinois. In 1880, he came to Wilber, Nebraska; in 1887 he moved to Schuyler and in 1890 again to Wilber, having lived in the meantime also in Dodge and possibly in other places. He did not stay long in Wilber the second time. In 1898 he returned finally to Chicago, where he died. Dr. Habenicht was rather an unusual man, an ardent lover of literature and the dramatic art. He devoted thirty years of his life to writing a history of the Czechs in the United States. He was a great admirer of Napoleon and in his large library were to be found any books he had ever heard of about his favorite hero.
Anton Nicodem Hanka (1813-1904), b. Teplice, Bohemia, trained as a physician at Univ. of Prague sailed to US in 1854 and eventually settled in New Ulm, TX, where he served for many years as a physician to the pioneer settlers. The Hankas later moved to Nelsonville, where he continued to serve the community.
Constantine Hering (orig. Hrinka) (1800-1880), b. Oschatz, Saxony, of Moravian ancestry, received medical education at Univ. of Wurzburg.
He came to Philadelphia in 1833, where he founded a homeopathic school, the first of its kind in any country. From 1845 till 1869 he filled the chairs of institutes of medicine and materia medica in the Philadelphia College of Homeopathy.
Wenceslaus James Hovorka (1857-1936), b. Bohemia, was a physician and surgeon, who attended public schools at New Prague, MN (187280). He entered medical dept. of Univ. of Minnesota in 1894, graduated from medical dept Hamline Univ. in 1897. He conducted drug business in St Paul (1884-97); practiced medicine exclusively at Glencoe and Silver Lake, MN (1897-1903); in drug business in St Paul (s. 1903). He was Supreme medical examiner for Western Bohemian Catholic Assn.
Henry Illoway (1848-1937), b. Kolín, Bohemia, received medical training at Miami Med. Coll. and in Cincinnati. He was a resident physician at Cincinnati Hospital (1869-70) and prof, of children's diseases at Cincinnati Coll. of Medicine and Surgery. Later he established a practice in New York City. He was a pioneer in the field of gastroenterology and he opened a private clinic for the poor. He was the author of Constipation in Adults and Children (1897) and The Summer Diarrhea of Infants (1904).
Moses Seligman Kakeles (ca 1820-1903), b. Prague-Libeh, Bohemia, was a surgeon, who had his own practice in New York City. He was instructor in clinical surgery.
Joseph Kornitzer (1824-1906), b. Nové Mesto nad Váhom, of Moravian parents, a noted physician, opened an office in NYC in 1868. He removed to Topeka, KS, then Cincinnati, OH and eventually settled in New Mexico. He was first to apply hypodermic treatment in Asiatic cholera (1868), first to apply antiseptics in eruption diseases and first to apply electrolysis in tuberculosis.
Hans Kudlich (1823-1917), b. Uvalno, Silesia, in 1854, immigrated to the US, settling in Hoboken, NJ, where he opened his medical practice.
Joseph Lewi (1820-1897), b. Radnice, Bohemia, the Univ. of Prague trained physician, settled in Albany, NY in 1849. There he was appointed to the staff of the Albany Hospital, and became a member and later president of the Albany County Medical Society. During the Civil War he organized the local branch of the Union League and served as a member of the commission for the examination of surgeons for the volunteer army.
Stanislaus v. Martinitz (1845-d.), b. Bohemia, was orig. trained as a physician at Grad. School of Medicine at Goethen. He emigrated to US in 1869 where he began practicing medicine. Subsequently he returned to Prague to attend clinics of the Univ. of Prague and also took a course at Chicago Med. Coll. He had a successful practice at Cedar Rapids, IA. In 1893 he was appointed a member of adv. council of med. dept. at the World's Congress of the World's Columbian Exposition.
George Edward Mitchell (1781-1832), a noted American politician from Elkton, MD, graduated from the medical department of the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia in 1805. He practiced medicine in Elkton from 1806 to 1812.
Leopold Franz Morawetz (1818-1892), b. Roudnice nad Labem, studied medicine at Univ. of Prague and in Vienna. He settled in Baltimore, MD in 1849, where he practiced medicine till his death.
James Cheston Morris (1831-1923), b. Philadelphia, PA, desc. f. Augustine Herman, graduated from the Univ. of Pennsylvania (A.B., 1851; A.M., 1854) and from the Dept. of Medicine (M.D., 1854). From 1856 to 1872, he worked as a physician with several organizations, including the Foster Home for Children, the Moyamensing House of Industry, and the Episcopal Hospital. He also served as a contract surgeon for the Union Army from October 1862 to August 1863.
Simon Pollak (1814-1903, born in Domazlice, Bohemia, was Univ. of Prague trained physician, who immigrated to the US in 1838 and settled in St. Louis, MO. He was the first in the city to specialize in ophthalmology. He played a key role in advancing education for the blind and visually impaired as one of the founders of the Missouri School for the Blind and was the first to introduce the Braille system of reading for the blind in the United States.
Joseph Proek (1836-d.), b. Bohemia, a physician, initially practiced in Cleveland, OH. He later moved his practice to San Francisco, CA. He became quite prosperous, partly because of his business ventures. He owned a sawmill and an olive oil press, planted vineyards; his winery produced quality wines and vinegars.
Joseph Herman Romig (1872-1951), b. Edwards Co., IL, a frontier physician, descended from Moravian immigrants who had settled in Tuscarawas County, Ohio. He grew up with nine brothers and sisters on the Chippewa Mission Farm near Independence, KS. The Moravian Church sponsored his medical training at the Hahnemann Medical School in Philadelphia in exchange for a pledge to serve for seven years as a doctor at a mission. After getting married in 1896, the couple moved to Bethel, Alaska to join Joseph's older sister Edith Margaret and her husband John Henry Kilbuck as missionaries to the Yupik people. For a time, Romig was one of the only physicians in Alaska. He became known as the 'dog team doctor' for traveling by dog sled throughout the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta in the course of his work. In 1903, with his term of missionary service complete, Romig relocated the family to San Francisco, CA. He was there for the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, and ran an emergency hospital in the aftermath. In 1906, he moved back to Alaska to take a job as a company physician in Nushagak. He also worked for a time as a United States Commissioner before moving to Seward to open a small hospital. In the 1920s, he worked as chief surgeon at the St. Joseph's Hospital in Fairbanks before setting up a hospital in Nenana for the Alaska Railroad. In 1930, he was asked to head the Alaska Railroad Hospital in Anchorage. When his son, Howard, returned from Stanford Univ. Medical School, they went into private practice together. Joseph Romig was elected Mayor of Anchorage in 1937, serving a single term. In 1939, Romig was appointed chief surgeon at Anchorage's newly constructed Providence Hospital at Ninth and L Street. He retired shortly thereafter, purchasing land on what would later be called Romig Hill. From his log cabin on the property, he started a 'Board of Directors Club' which eventually provided the founding members of the Anchorage Rotary Club.
Marcus Rosenwasser (1846-1910), b. Bukovany, Bohemia, received medical training at Univ. of Prague. He practiced medicine in Cleveland (s. 1896), becoming one of the city's leading gynecologists. In 1888, he began his career as teacher of gynecology, with the title of Professor of Medical and Surgical Diseases of Women in medical dept. of Wooster Univ., of which he was for many years a dean. Later he was professor of diseases of women in the medical dept. of the Ohio Wesleyan Univ. He was a public health officer for Northern Ohio and president of the Cleveland Board of Health. As gynecologist, he was a national figure in his advocacy of the delayed treatment of ectopic pregnancy.
George Edward de Schweinitz (1858-1938), b. Philadelphia, PA, of Moravian ancestry, was Univ. of Pennsylvania trained physician. He was ophthalmic surgeon at Children's Hospital (1885) and Orthopedic Hospital and Infirmary for Nervous Diseases (1886) and Philadelphia General Hospital (1881). He held chairs of ophthalmology at Philadelphia Polyclinic and Coll. for Graduates in Medicine at Jefferson Med Coll. In 1902 he was appointed prof, of ophthalmology at Univ. of Pennsylvania. He was the author of Diseases of the Eye (1892), published in 10 editions, which was considered the best book in the field.
Samuel L. Shober (1761- 1797), b. Bethlehem, PA, of Moravian ancestry, received his degree of MD at College of Philadelphia, later University of Pennsylvania. He located in Philadelphia, where he became an eminent physician.
Frank Slopansky (1845-1900), b. Bohemia, in 1867, began the study of medicine in Racine, Wisconsin. After completing his medical education (1872), he removed to Kansas, settling at Cuba, Republic Co., where he took up the first homestead at New Tabor. There he began practice but afterward again became a resident of Cuba, where he built the first drug store.
Lewis W. Steinbach (1851-1913), b. Vysoka, Bohemia, was trained as a physician at Jefferson Medical Coll. He was prof, of clinical and operative surgery, Philadelphia Polytechnic, secretary and later president of Polytechnic Clinic Faculty. He was a recipient of gold medal for the best report of the surgical clinics at Pennsylvania Hospitals.
Albanus Logan Styer (1825-1902), b. Montgomery Co., PA, of Bohemian ancestry, studied medicine at Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia (M.D., 1849). He had his practice in the village of Montgomery Square, PA and in his later years he resided at ambler, PA, where he also owned a farm on which he conducted extensive operations, and in addition he was the proprietor of a drugstore there.
William Taussig (1826-1913), b. Prague, Bohemia, studied medicine at Univ. of Prague and Pope's Medical College. He then started medical practice in St. Louis. During a cholera epidemic in 1849, he served the city as assistant physician and apothecary at quarantine. In 1851 he moved to Carondelet, where he soon built up a very extensive practice. In 1852 he was elected mayor of the city, and held that office until failing health compelled him to retire from the position, and also to give up his large medical practice.
Francis A. Valenta (ca 1825- 1870), b. Moravia, a physician, who came to Chicago in 1849, had his medical practice in Chicago s. 1851. Later on he also established his pharmacy on the corner of State and Van Buren Streets. His knowledge of German enabled him to practice medicine especially among Germans. After fourteen years of medical practice, he was quite rich and returned to Bohemia, reportedly with some $50,000.
Charles Winternitz (1843-1959), b. Bohemia, was trained as a physician at Univ. of Vienna. After coming to Baltimore, MD, he became a resident physician at Hebrew Hospital, Baltimore, for five years from its foundation (1868-73) and a medical examiner for Metropolitan Life Insurance Company (s. 1869).
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Table of Contents
XX. Medicine, 1893,
XXI. Allied Health Sciences and Social Services, 2072,
XXII. Agricultural and Food Sciences, 2135,
XXIII. Military, 2170,
XXIV. Exploration, 2206,
XXV. Espionage, 2220,
XXVI. Sports, 2226,
XXVII. Modeling, 2320,
XXVIII. Recreation, 2325,
General References, 2331,
Acronyms & Abbreviations, 2341,
Name Index, 2377,