Lee County Biography

David H. Law, M.D.

David H. Law, M.D., a prominent physician and surgeon of Dixon, and one of the influential and progressive citizens of Lee County, well deserves presentation in this volume, for he has done much toward the upbuilding and development of the county, and with the promotion of its best interests his name is inseparably connected. A native of the Empire State, he was there born and reared, and in 1840 came to Lee County. hiss life has been a varied and eventful one, and his experiences have made him an excellent judge of human nature and also an able and interesting conversationalist.

In the spring of 1852, the Doctor joined a party en route for California. With teams they crossed the plains, living upon the wild game which they could secure and the milk furnished by the cows they took with them. Many of his comrades died while they were on the way, of cholera, which was then epidemic. Ere they reached their destination, they encountered the red men, and the Doctor won for himself a gallant record for bravery. Were all of his experiences in crossing the plains told, much of the story would hardly be credited by those who did not experience such a life. Four years he spent in the West, engaging in mining, and his recollections of that period of his life are very vivid. On his return in 1856, he entered upon the study of medicine with his brother-in-law, Dr. Oliver Everett, a well-known physician of Lee County, now deceased. Later, he entered the College of Physicians and Surgeons, of Keokuk, Iowa, from which he was graduated in the Class of `61. The Civil War was then in progress and he relin- quished all thought of private practice.

Enlisting in Company A, Thirteenth Illinois In fantry, Dr. Law became Assistant Surgeon of his regiment and later was detailed as Staff-Surgeon for Gen. Curtis, discharging the duties of a Battalion Surgeon. After some time, he was discharged in order that he might accept a commission as Lieutenant Colonel of a Missouri regiment, but as the war was then drawing to a close, the troops were never called forth and the Doctor acted as private surgeon for different generals in the late war, who, recognizing his skill and ability, did not wish him to leave the service and hired him on a salary. His bravery and his loyalty to his country were frequently tested and never failed. On one occasion he broke up a meeting of the Knights of the Golden Circle that convened in a hotel, where he had occasion to stop. His military record is one of which he may well be proud. For four years he served his country faithfully and well and when the war was over, and his services no longer needed, he resumed private practice.

On his return to Dixon, Dr. Law formed a Partnership with his former preceptor, Dr. Everett, the connection continuing until 1873, when he went to Chicago, where for some time he was connected with a barb-wire manufactory. Since again locating in Dixon, he has devoted his energies untiringly to the practice of medicine, and his skill and ability are recognized by a large number of patrons. He is also the owner of a farm of two hundred acres, which is stocked with mileh cows and supplies milk to the great Swiss Milk Condensing Company. After thorough investigation and tests of this product, Dr. Law has found it to be one the best foods manufactured for infants and he spent considerable sums of money in making food what it is. His dairy is a model of convience and cleanliness, lacking in no particular.

In Sterling, Ill., the Doctor was joined in wedlock with Miss Mary P. Dillon, who died 1eaving one son, David H., who is now connected with the Dixon National Bank. For a second wife, Dr. Law chose Miss Dorothy Taylor, of Chicago, where their union was celebrated. They also have one son, James E. Their home is one of the largest and most beautiful residences of Dixon. It was built in the modern approved style with a view to the best sanitary conditions, and the arrangement is a model of convenience. The furniture is tastefully arranged and the wlls are decorated with many beautiful pictures, the work of Mrs. Law who possesses marked artistic ability.

The Doctor has traveled extensively over this country and is versed in the topography and geography of the United States. In all his travels he says he has found no better located city as regards conditions of health and comfort than Dixon, which is so beautifully located on the "Hudson of the West." The cause of education has ever found in the Doctor a warm friend, and he and his wife have done much for its furthience. They advocate all reforms for the benefit of humanity and are progressive and public-spirited people who occupy a warm place in the hearts of their many friends, and rank high in the esteem of all who know them. In politics, the Doctor is Republican, who warmly advocates the party principles, but has never been an office-seeker.

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