Biography of Harrison H. Guthrie, M. D.

Harrison H. Guthrie, M. D., has been in the active practice of his profession in San Bernardino since November, 1881. He came to California from St. Charles, Minnesota, where eighteen years of arduous labor and exposure in that rigorous climate had seriously impaired his naturally delicate constitution. He was born in Preston County, West Virginia, in April 1832, and is the son of a house carpenter, who was also a Virginian. The Doctor was left motherless when nine days old, and was taken and reared by his maternal grandparents in Maryland. Being of an active mental temperament, he advanced rapidly in his studies, and began teaching in the State of Pennsylvania, in his fifteenth year. At the age of twenty-one, after teaching a number of terms there and in Maryland, he came west to Illinois, and spent ten years in and about Rockford, where he taught ten terms, thus earning the means with which to obtain his medical education. He prosecuted his studies while teaching and during vacations, and had more than completed the required course of reading, but had not graduated when the war of the Rebellion broke out. In June, 1862, he enlisted as a private in the Sixty-seventh Volunteer Infantry, and did mostly post duty until honorably discharged, September 27, 1862. Going from camp to Rush College, Chicago, he graduated M. D. in the spring of 1863, and immediately entered the Chicago Hospital, then used as a military hospital, was made hospital steward and officiated as assistant surgeon, having charge of three wards. He entered the hospital under contract, at the solicitation of Dr. McVickar, surgeon in charge, who had formed a warm friendship for the young doctor, and received only the pay of a private soldier.

At the end of six months he resigned and established himself in practice at St. Charles, Minnesota. While located there he was active in various local matters pertaining to the best interest and progress of the city; served seven years as a member of the Board of Education; was one of the organizers of the local post of the Grand Army of the Republic, being commander for two years, and surgeon one year, of the post. When about to move away, the citizens gave him a reception and presented him with a beautiful silver water pitcher, the mayor of the city making the presentation speech, in which he eulogized Dr. Guthrie highly for his integrity of character and zealous labors in behalf of the welfare of the city.

On reaching California he settled in San Bernardino, where has enjoyed a prosperous practice, and fully recovered his health. The years of pedagogical work in earlier life developed a taste for books, scientific study and re-search, especially in the line of geology and mineralogy, on which science he has, at the solicitation of prominent educators, given lectures on several occasions before assemblages of teachers; and has also executed a large hand-painted geological map, illustrating the strata of the earth’s surface; a work of much labor and merit. He has a fine library of standard scientific, historical and religious works. The Doctor is a member of the San Bernardino County Medical Society and the Southern California Medical Society.

He has been twice married. His first wife was Miss Mary E. Hovey, whom he married in Illinois. At her death she left one child, a daughter, who graduated in 1889 from the Illinois State Normal School with the honors of her class of twenty-nine. Dr. Guthrie’s present wife was Miss Mattie L. Smith, a native of Michigan. They have had two sons: one is dead. Art S. Guthrie, a bright young man of twenty, is an abstracter in the office of the Wozencraft Abstract Co. He is the Left General Guide of the Ninth Infantry Regiment, National Guard of California.


The Lewis Publishing Company. An Illustrated History of Southern California embracing the counties of San Diego San Bernardino Los Angeles and Orange and the peninsula of lower California. The Lewis Publishing Company, Chicago, Illinois. 1890.

Search Military Records - Fold3

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Pin It on Pinterest

Scroll to Top