Biography - Robert Hutchison

ROBERT W. HUTCHISON, M. D., one of the ablest and most successful physicians and surgeons of Massac County, has for many years enjoyed an extended practice in Joppa and the surrounding country, devoting himself uuweariedly to the cares of his profession, and alike in sunshine and tempest going his daily round, his presence being a familiar one in the homes of wealth as well as in those of abject destitution. The father of our subject, Nathaniel Hutchison, was born and educated for the ministry' in England, where he studied to become a divine of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Emigrating to America in compan3- with his father and mother, he crossed the Atlantic in a sailing-vessel, and arriving in New York, speedily found his way to Clarksville, Tenn., where the father, mother and son located, and being almost destitute of means, Nathaniel worked upon a farm, and, as he could, attended school until he was about twenty years of age, when he began teaching, and continued in that vocation for about seven years, the scenes of his scholarly labors being confined to Montgomery County, Tenn.
Father Hutchison was a most successful teacher, but the desire of his heart was to preach the Word, and to this ultimate end all his efforts were directed. He therefore at the expiration of the seven years began his ministrations as a preacher, and for the succeeding five years labored in the vineyard of the Master, and as a pastor was continually employed. By the most persistent and self-sacrificing economy he had in the meantime gained one hundred and sixty acres of land, which he afterward disposed of to excellent advantage, and invested in the "Jackson Purchase," where he bought two hundred acres in an unimproved farm, for which he paid $3,000, and where he spent his last days, passing away March 19, 1861, after a life of useful influence and devotion to the cause of Christianity. He was married in Tennessee to Miss Martha Roark, born in Hanover, Germany, and who died in Clarksville in 1866. She had emigrated in her youth to America with her grandmother, and was a most estimable wife and mother. Nathaniel Hutchison is yet remembered by many as a generous, whole-souled and Christian gentleman, who, thoroughly loyal to the Union, suffered persecution during the impending shadow of the Civil War, which was already darkening the land when he died. He lived to lose by his constancy to the Government every dollar of property he liad gathered with such self-sacrificing care, and his death was undoubtedly hastened by his keen anxieties for his loved ones and his adopted country.
Nine children gathered in the old Tennessee homestead, of whom Huston, the eldest, is deceased; James is now living in Johnson County, near Vienna, farming; Charles W. is a Cumberland Presbyterian minister, and resides at present in Kansas City; William is deceased; Nathaniel gave his life for his country and served nearly five years in the army, enlisting in 1862 in the Sixth Illinois Cavalry, and remaining in active duty until the close of the war, being subsequently killed by a rebel; Thomas is a resident of Metropolis; Sarah is the wife of Jacob Albright, of Clarksville, Tenn.; Robert W. was the eighth child; Martin Van Buren is a Massac County farmer, and served bravely in the war, first enlisting in the Eighth Kentucky Cavalry, and one year later entering the ranks of the Fifty-first Indiana Cavalry, with which regiment he remained until the close of the war, experiencing most severe and dangerous duties.
Robert W., our subject, was born in Simpson County, Ky., October 10, 1841, and worked upon his father's farm from his twelfth to his seventeenth year, meantime attending the district schools and receiving higher instruction in an academy at Hopkinsville. He began the study of medicine with Dr. William Parriam as preceptor in Simpson County, and during his last two years in school had shaped his course with a view to his subsequent profession. After spending three years with Dr. Parriam and attending lectures at the Nashville Institute, lie engaged in office work and in the practice of the medical profession with his preceptor, until, for the purpose of perfecting himself in certain specialties, he entered the Louisville Medical College. He later returned to his original field of practice, but at the expiration of a twelve-month was obliged to go to the assistance of his father, and remained with him for two years. When the war broke out both parties were recruiting, and it was then his father's property was lost.
About this time our subject enlisted in the Eighth Kentucky Cavalry, and gallantly served one year, being then honorably discharged from the army. He was in a hot fight at Nashville and participated in various skirmishes, returning home unwounded, but with impaired health. Dr. Hutchison next made his home in Metropolis, Ill., and there was associated in practice with Dr. E. M. Melton for two years, removing thence to Missouri, where, on account of heart trouble, he found it impossible to remain longer than one year. He again established himself in Metropolis, but in 1867 located in Joppa, where he has since continuously practiced with great success. His field of duty is large, embracing an extended territory, and frequently obliging him to ride many miles over rough roads, but an earnest and conscientious physician, he neglects no demand of his profession, to whose noble work he has devoted his life. Dr. Hutchison was married in 1873, to Miss Rebecca Wimberly, a native of Tennessee, from which State her parents removed to Massac County, Ill., where they both passed away. Our subject and his estimable wife were the parents of four children. Hallie, Edna and Robert W. are at home; Letha, the third child, is deceased. Mrs. Hutchison is a valued member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and with her husband is active in all good work. Dr. Hutchison is a Democrat, and an ardent supporter of the party of the people, but his time is given entirely to a life of honored usefulness, which has given him a high place in the esteem and confidence of his follow-men.

Extracted 24 Jul 2016 by Norma Hass from 1893 Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 266-268

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