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Dr. Charles Sebastian Hertich

Dr. Charles S. Hertich, a well known representative citizen of Ste. Genevieve County, Mo., was born in Ste. Genevieve, March 25, 1821.


His father, Joseph Hertich, was a native of Switzerland, and immigrated to America about 1796, when he was twenty years of age. He was accompanied by his mother, a brother and a sister, and after landing in Baltimore the mother died from the effects of the voyage. He then, with his brother and sister, settled in Danville, Ky., where he was engaged for some time in teaching school.


In 1810 he removed to Ste. Genevieve, bringing by pack train a stock of merchandise. The trip was full of peril, as they had to travel through unbroken forests inhabited by numerous tribes of Indians.


At Ste. Genevieve he engaged in merchandising, which he continued until 1815, when he retired from active business and opened a school called the “Asylum” near Ste. Genevieve. It became a prosperous and well known institution, for from it graduated some of Missouri’s most prominent men. Hon. Lewis Vital Bogy, late United States Senator from Missouri was a graduate of this institution; Hon. Augustus C. Dodge, United States Senator from Iowa, and afterward minister to Spain, was another graduate; Gen. George W. Jones, of Iowa, was another, and Hon. B.J. Hall still another. The school was noted for its moral and mental culture, being under the personal supervision of Mr. Joseph Hertich, a man of marked ability as a tutor, and a fine linguist, being equally conversant with the French and German languages.

In 1815 Mr. Joseph Hertich married Miss Marcelite de Villars, a daughter of the then French governor of Louisiana. She was a native of the city of New Orleans, born in 1782. Their marriage resulted in the birth of six children who were named as follows: Joseph Paul (deceased), Clara A. (widow of Hon. Augustus C. Dodge, who was previously mentioned in this sketch), Charles S., Louis Villars (deceased), Henry (deceased) and Marcelite (deceased).


Charles S. Hertich, whose biography forms the principal part of this sketch, received a thorough education under the instruction of his father, and after finishing he engaged in merchandising in Wisconsin with H.F. Dodge, of that State, but in about a year he returned to assist his father in teaching at the “Asylum” in Ste. Genevieve County, Mo. He was then only nineteen years of age, but was beyond the average youth in educational attainments. He decided upon studying medicine, and began his studies under the supervision of Drs. Lowe and Hickok, of Burlington, Iowa. He then went to St. Louis and entered the office of Dr. M.L. Pallen, and at the same time attended lectures at the St. Louis Medical College, from which he graduated in 1847. He then began to practice at Burlington, Iowa, but on account of ill health was obliged to abandon the same.


In November, 1846, he married Miss Mary L. Rozier, daughter of Ferdinand and Constance (Roy) Rozier, and to them were born six children – four sons and two daughters now living.


In 1848 Dr. Hertich went to Long Prairie, Minn., having been appointed by President Filmore as United States Surgeon to the Winnebago Indians.


In 1851 he located in Ste. Genevieve, where he began the practice of his profession, and soon became known as one of the leading physicians of the country.


During the late war Dr. Hertich was appointed as the United States government post surgeon of Ste. Genevieve, and served as such through the war.


The Doctor is a pleasant, affable gentleman, and is well known in Ste. Genevieve as a man of sterling merit. As a citizen or physician he has a name and record which is unimpeachable.


In May, 1878, he suffered a severe stroke of paralysis, which left his whole right side helpless. To the Doctor and his wife were born these children: Charles J., M.D., of Bloomsdale, Mo.; Villars J. (deceased); Bartholomew J., a pharmacist, at Ste. Genevieve; Augustus C., an attorney at Ste. Genevieve; Clara, Mrs. Frank Roeder, of St. Louis; and Blanch, Mrs. Felix Le Compte, who is at home.


The family worship at the Catholic Church, and are universally respected and esteemed.

*Source: History of Southeast Missouri (1888). Transcribed by Kim Mohler.

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