Jonathan Fairbanks and Clyde Edwin Tuck

Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri

Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens

ENOCH KNABB, M. D. It is claimed by some authors that a man's life, or words of disparagement or praise of it, should not be written until after his death. Perhaps not until he has been dead some years. For, though, in one sense, none can know a man so well as he knows himself, and of the exterior knowledge gained concerning him, the simplest facts are liable to continual misrepresentation, still a certain amount of distance is essential to the breadth, comprehension and truthfulness of the view--especially of that tuneful harp, that mysterious picture, a human existence. When an individual has attained the eminence in a community that Dr. Enoch Knabb has, it is fitting that a suitable biography be prepared of him for reference by his friends, hence the following tribute.

Doctor Knabb, for many years one of the well-known general physicians of Springfield, Missouri, was born in Wright county, this state, March 1, 1867. He is a son of Henry M. Knabb, who was born near Indianapolis, Indiana, August 4, 1836, and there he spent his earlier years, finally immigrating in an early day to Missouri and establishing the family home in Wright county, where he devoted his life to general farming and stock raising. During the Civil war he was a member of the Eighth Missouri Volunteer Cavalry. While in the service he contracted rheumatism and was confined in the government hospital for some time. He saw considerable hard service and was in a number of engagements. His death occurred in Missouri at the home place in 1891. The doctor's mother was born in 1830 and died in 1905 at the advanced age of seventy-five years. These parents were both members of the Christian church. The mother was known in her maidenhood as Minerva Gass. Dr. Knabb has a sister, Mrs. Mary A. Priester, who resides near Lorey, Wright county, Missouri. Her husband is engaged in buying and shipping live stock there. Jacob Knabb, our subject's paternal grandfather, was a German-American, born in Pennsylvania, and his death occurred at the age of seventy-five years. His wife was a native of the United States.

Doctor Knabb is an excellent example of a self-made man, having worked hard in his youth to obtain money to defray his expenses in school, but such ambition and determination as he displayed could not fail of definite results. He grew to manhood in Wright county and received his early education in the rural schools of his native community, later attended the high school at Hartville, and, having decided upon a career as physician, he entered the Keokuk Medical College, at Keokuk, Iowa, in the autumn of 1892, from which he was graduated with the class of 1895. Soon thereafter he commenced the practice of his profession at Stoutland, Missouri, near Lebanon, remaining there six years, during which he had a good country practice. Seeking a larger field for the exercise of his talents, he removed to Springfield in 1901, where he has been engaged in a large and satisfactory practice ever since, which is constantly growing. He now confines his practice mostly to within the city limits. He took a post-graduate course in the Chicago Polyclinic in 1900 and 1905, and also took a post-graduate course in Kansas City in 1912.

Doctor Knabb is a member of the Greene County Medical Society the Southwest Missouri Medical Society, the Missouri State Medical Association and the American Medical Association. Fraternally, he belongs to the Modern Woodmen of America, the Woodmen of the World, the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and many other lodges. Religiously, he is a member of the Central Christian church, and politically is a Republican.

Dr. Knabb was married on October 11, 1885, to Matilda F. Davis, a daughter of James and Mary C. (Foster) Davis. Mrs. Knabb is a native of Wright county, Missouri, and she received her education in the rural schools there.

Three children have been born to Doctor Knabb and wife, named as follow: Henry F., born in Wright county, Missouri, May 5, 1887, was educated in the Springfield public schools, graduating from the high school here, and in 1907 he entered the medical department of the St. Louis University, and was graduated with the class of 1911, and is successfully engaged in the practice of his profession at Foyill, Oklahoma; he married Ora K. Harris in September, 1910, who is a graduate of the Springfield high school, also attended the State Normal here at different times, and she taught school four years; she is a daughter of Doctor and Dolly Harris. Arthur D. Knabb, second of our subject's children, was born in Wright county, this state, January 28, 1889, was graduated from the Springfield high school in 1909, and the same year entered the medical department of the St. Louis University, from which he was graduated with the class of 1913; he served one year as interne at Lexin Brothers Hospital, St. Louis, and was elected professor of bacteriology and pathology; and later he resigned and took up the practice of his profession with his father in Springfield, Missouri, and is making a pronounced success in his profession. He was married on June 26, 1914, to Beulah Harlow, a resident of Springfield. She is the daughter of Rev. W. E. Harlow, of 1359 Washington avenue, and a woman of education and refinement. She was graduated from Springfield high school in 1909. She was one of five children, four of whom are still living at home, the oldest having died about eleven years ago. Vernie E. Knabb was born in Wright county, Missouri, October 19, 1891; was graduated from the Springfield high school, later took a course in the Springfield Business College, from which she graduated in 1904. She is single and lives with her parents. These children have all received every advantage in the way of preparation for serious life work, and they all give promise of exceptional success in their chosen spheres of endeavor.


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