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Below is a family biography included in Portrait and Biographical Record of Berrien and Cass Counties, Michigan published by Biographical Publishing Company in 1893.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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SIMEON BELKNAP, M. D., of Niles, was born in the village of Barnard, Windsor County, Vt., October 16, 1837. His ancestors on the paternal side emigrated from England to America at an early period in the history of the Colonies, and made settlement in the Green Mountain State, where our subject’s father, Seymour, and his grandfather, Simeon, opened their eyes to the light of day. The mother of our subject was Lydia, daughter of Sylvanus Campbell, and a native of Vermont, her ancestors being of Scotch origin.

The Doctor’s early boyhood days were passed in the Green Mountain State, and he fitted himself for college in the school at Newbury, Vt. At the conclusion of his literary studies, he entered upon the study of medicine, which he carried on under the preceptorship of Dr. Huntington, of Rochester, Vt. At a somewhat later period he became a student in the medical department of the State University of Vermont, from which institution he was graduated in June of 1860, afterward spending one year in hospitals in Boston, Mass. Opening an office at Rochester, Vt., he commenced the practice of his profession in that village, forming a partnership with Dr. W. M. Huntington, his preceptor, and gradually gaining a large and profitable practice.

In 1873 the Doctor located in Niles, which he believed offered a favorable opening for a physician. Subsequent events justified his decision and proved the wisdom of his opinion, for he soon was in command of as much practice as he could give his personal attention to. For eleven years he was in partnership with the late Dr. E. J. Bonine, the firm title being Bonine & Belknap. Some two years previous to the death of Dr. Bonine, our subject formed a partnership with his son, Fred R. Belknap. To his profession he brings the stores of a well-trained mind, great physical endurance, and abilities of an unusually high order. It is not strange, therefore, that he has attained success, and that through his own tireless exertions, unaided either by circumstances or influential friends, he has gained a place among the foremost practitioners of southwestern Michigan.

The marriage of Dr. Belknap occurred in 1862, and united him with Miss Addie M. Rice, who at that time was a resident of Cincinnati, Ohio, although Vermont was her native home. Her father, Uriah Rice, was a prominent man in Cincinnati, and for seventeen years filled the position of Superintendent of Schools of that city. The Doctor and his wife are the parents of two sons, Fred Rice and Simeon, Jr. The first-named is a graduate of Bellevue Hospital College, New York, and after completing his medical studies he spent one year in Berlin, London and other European cities, where he had the advantages of study under the most eminent physicians and surgeons of this century. In his social connections, our subject is prominently identified with St. Joseph Valley Lodge No. 4, A. F. &, A. M., in which he is an active worker. He has been a member of the American Medical Association since 1865; of the Michigan Medical Society since 1877; of Kalamazoo Academy of Medicine since 1880; also of the Pan American Medical Congress. He has been United States Pension Examining Surgeon for fifteen years, and is now Secretary of the Board at Niles; a member of the National Association of Railway Surgeons; and Surgeon of the Michigan Division of the Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago &: St. Louis Railroad.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Portrait and Biographical Record of Berrien and Cass Counties, Michigan published in 1893. 

View additional Berrien County, Michigan family biographies here: Berrien County, Michigan Biographies

View a map of 1911 Berrien County, Michigan here: Berrien County Michigan Map

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