A Narrative History of The People of Iowa


EDWARD F. BEEH is a native Iowan who has become a distinguished surgeon, and in that field his name is held in very high respect in Fort Dodge, and that section of the state.

Doctor Beeh was born at Belle Plaine, Iowa.  October 15, 1888.  His parents, Henry and Frances (Nowotny) Beeh, were also natives of Iowa, and both are living at Belle Plaine.  There is some interesting family history regarding the Beeh and Nowotny families.  Before coming to America these families lived on the border between Germany and Hungary, Doctor Beeh's grandfather, Henry C. Beeh, living about fifteen miles from the Bohemian line, while John Nowotny was a Bohemian about ten miles from the German frontier.  These two men knew each other, in fact, were quite intimate, and they both decided at the same time to come to America.  They made the voyage across the ocean on the same boat.  It was during the 1850's that they settled in Iowa, which was then a raw and new western state.  Henry C. Beeh selected as his location some land in Benton County, while John Nowotny went to Iowa County.  The oldest son of the Beeh family married the oldest daughter of the Nowotny family and later the oldest son of the Nowotny household claimed as a bride the oldest daughter of the Beeh family, and thus the friendship that had started in the old country was cemented by closer family ties.  In Germany and Bohemia neither family had owned a great deal of land or other possessions, and the trip across the ocean required most of the money that they had, so that they started in Iowa as poor as the poorest of the pioneers who came to this side of the Mississippi River in search of new homes and new opportunities.  They were thrifty and industrious, and both families owned large and  well-improved farms before the first generation had passed from the scene of the living.
The father of Doctor Beeh spent all his active life as an Iowa farmer and was enjoying the comforts of retired life in Belle Plaine at the time of his death, November 15, 1929.  He held some township offices, was an independent voter and had no church affiliations, but his wife is a loyal Catholic.  Of their three children two are living, Edward F., and Bernadine, wife of C. F. Feller, a farmer at Victor, Iowa.

Dr. Edward F. Beeh was reared on a farm, learned its routine of work while attending school and in 1908 graduated from the Belle Plaine High School.  From there he entered the University of Iowa, at Iowa City, took his Bachelor of Science degree in 1912, doing his pre-medical work while there, and in 1914 he was graduated with his medical degree from Northwestern University School of Medicine in Chicago.  He spent his internship in a hospital in Denver, Colorado, and there came under the direction of the eminent surgeon Dr. Leonard Freeman.  Doctor Beeh in 1917 located at Fort Dodge, and practically all of his time has been taken up with his practice as a surgeon.  He is on the surgical staff of one of Fort Dodge's hospitals.  He is a member of the Webster County, Iowa State and American Medical Associations, the Austin Flint Surgical Society and is a charter member of the International Surgical Assembly.

He spent one year in the war service, being stationed at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and later at Camp Lee, Petersburg, Virginia, where he was on the Base Hospital staff.  He gave his professional care to a great many of the returned veterans from overseas.  He was discharged, with the rank of first lieutenant, March 1, 1919.

Doctor Beeh married, in 1919, Miss Ann Barrett.  She was born at Macomb, Illinois, was educated in Illinois schools and colleges and was teaching at Iowa City when she and Doctor Beeh married.  They have one son, Edward F., Jr., born February 15, 1928.  Doctor Beeh is a member of the Corpus Christi Catholic Church of Fort Dodge, is a member of the Knights of Columbus, B. P. O. Elks, Rotary Club of Fort Dodge and in politics votes independently.


~ source: A Narrative History of The People of Iowa with SPECIAL TREATMENT OF THEIR CHIEF ENTERPRISES IN EDUCATION, RELIGION, VALOR, INDUSTRY, BUSINESS, ETC., by EDGAR RUBEY HARLAN, LL. B., A. M. Curator of the Historical, Memorial and Art Department of Iowa Volume IV THE AMERICAN HISTORICAL SOCIETY, Inc. Chicago and New York. 1931
~ transcribe by Debbie Clough Gerischer for the Great War