Monday, February 20, 2012

Amanuensis Monday: Joseph H. Frazier, MD

Amanuensis Monday is a daily prompt at Geneabloggers which encourages the family historian to transcribe family letters, journals, audiotapes, and other historical artifacts.

The Fraziers seem to have been a family of hard-working farmers and dedicated moonshiners.  The family history is dotted with stories of Civil War draft dodging and killings and countless illegitimate children. 

But there are also some stories of Fraziers who achieved financial and personal success.  One is the son of the notorious Leland Frazier, Joseph Hardin Frazier. 


This article (found on  appears in a history of Randolph County, Missouri.

Joseph H. Frazier, M.D.
(Physician and Surgeon; also Farmer; Post-office, Rolling Home, MO)

Dr. Frazier has been engaged in the practice of medicine in the vicinity of Rolling Home for 18 years, and has been long recognized as one of the capable and successful physicians of the north-western part of the county.  His practice not only extends through this section of Randolph county, but also into the neighboring vicinities of Macon and Chariton.  The Doctor has ever commanded a good practice and, while it has not been his highest ambition to accumulate property, for he has done a great deal of gratuitous practice and has never oppressed the poor or unfortunate, yet as the fruits of his long and faithful services he has secured a substantial modicum of this world’s goods.  The Doctor has a handsome farm of some 200 acres where he now resides and is pleasantly and comfortably situated.  He has passed that point where he must practice as a means of support, for his farm would sustain him in abundance; but possessed of large humanity and warm sympathies, he never turns a deaf ear to the call of the sufferer, but goes wherever duty demands, in summer’s heat or winter’s cold, in sunshine, or in the shadow of night, when all nature sleeps or but the melancholy voice of the owl is heard or the lonely chirp of the cricket by the wayside.  Dr. Frazier was a native of the Old Dominion –Virginia— born in Orange county, Va., April 23, 1828.  His father’s name was Leland Frazier, and his mother’s maiden name Ann Mallory.  Both were native to the same county in which the Doctor, himself, was born and reared.  Dr. Frazier’s early educational advantages were quite limited, and when he came to Missouri in 1853, he had still not completed a course of instruction satisfactory to himself, having in view, as he did have a career in the medical profession.  His first year in this State was spent in Jackson county, where he worked on a farm, after which he came to Randolph, and here he attended school for a session on Silver creek.  Following his last term at school, young Frazier taught school until 1862, when he felt himself in a situation to begin the study of medicine.  He read medicine under Dr. Terrill, that old and honored Nestor of the profession in Randolph county.  He studied under Dr. Terrill until 1865, attending the medical lectures at St. Louis durin the sessions of 1864 and 1865.  He graduated in the Medical College of Keokuk, Iowa, in the class of 1872, and at once returned to Randolph county and entered upon the practice at Thomas Hill.  He has since been engaged in the practice in this vicinity.  On the 14th day of February, 1864, Dr. Frazier was married to Miss Deniza E. Epperly.  They have seven children, namely: Joseph, Susan M., Mary B., Theresa, William L., Leland and Oliver.  All of the children are at home, except Joseph, who is living near Clifton, in this county. The Doctor and wife are members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and the Doctor is also a member of the Masonic order.  During the war Dr. F. served eight months in the Southern State Guard, and participated in the battles of Boonville, Lexington and Pea Ridge.  He has a pony that he rode in the army and while in the battle of Pea Ridge, which is now 26 years old, and which is still gamboling on the green with head up and tail erect, as light-footed and frisky, and with spirit as gay and free as the May zephyrs that toy with the velvety leaves of a new blown rose, or with the golden locks of a silken-haired maid.  This pony is known as “Barber Willis,” and was named for the hero of the Crusades, who, for the first time in the history of the world, unfurled the banner of the Cross in triumph on the ancient walls of Jerusalem.

It appears this article was written prior to 1885, because there were 3 more children born to Joseph and Deniza:  Aubrey C., Ione, and Robert Bruce. 

Joseph died in 1892 and is buried in the Mt. Carmel Cemetery, Clifton Hill, Randolph Co., Missouri.

Image from
by James M. Bagby

©2014, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.

1 comment:

  1. I so enjoy a good run through history, and discovering so many interesting things, and even going to cemeteries can tell unbelievable info. I was in Mo. and visited the Lexington site, and later at the Pea Ridge site....both were very informative, and the old plantation like house at Lexington they turned into a hospital, unbelievable times during that time! You did a wonderful job on this post!