Biography of Dr. Homer W. Osborn
Cuyahoga County, OH Biographies

HOMER W. OSBORN, M. D. In the great arena in which are staged all activities, the one outstanding element of individual greatness is that of service. He who serves wisely and well has distinct patent to the title of royalty, and those in the least familiar with the life and labors of the late Dr. Homer W. Osborn, of Cleveland, can not fail to appreciate how fully he lived up to this high standard of human service. His professional stewardship was one of signal fidelity, and his deep and abiding human sympathy transcended mere emotion to become an actuating force for helpfulness. He loved his work and knew that it was good and true. To have this realization denoted his consecration to service, and in his professional ministrations, in his unvarying kindliness and sympathy, in his loyalty as a citizen, in his fine appreciation of the true values in sentiment and action, he had little thought for self, but much thought for others and their happiness. Such was the man who achieved greatly in his chosen calling, and such the man whose memory is revered by all who came within the province of his influence.

Doctor Osborn was born at Ashtabula, Ohio, February 27, 1843, and was seventy six years of age when he was called from the stage of life's mortal endeavors, his death having occurred at his home in the City of Cleveland November 20, 1919. The Doctor was a scion of one of the old and honored families of the Buckeye State, and gained his earlier education in the schools of his native place. He was a lad of fourteen years when he accompanied his parents on their removal to Darlington, Wisconsin, where he continued his studies in the common schools. Later he was for a time a student in a private school at Kingsville, Ohio. He was an ambitious youth of seventeen years at the inception of the Civil war, and was formulating definite plans for his future career. At this stage in his career, however, he promptly subordinated all personal interests to the call of patriotism and enlisted as a private in the Third Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, which became a part of the famous "Iron Brigade," the record of which constitutes a splendid chapter in the history of the great conflict between the states of the North and the South. That Doctor Osborn continued in active service with this command until the close of the war, save for the interval during which he was incapacitated by wounds, offers the most effective voucher for the valor and fidelity of his service in defense of the nation's integrity. In the battle of Antietam he was severely wounded, but as soon as he had sufficiently recuperated as to permit this action he rejoined his regiment, with which he took part in the great battle of Gettysburg, where the Third Wisconsin Regiment of Infantry bore the main part in breaking the historic charge of the Confederate forces under General Pickett. Later Doctor Osborn was with his regiment in Sherman's great Atlanta campaign, and at the battle of Resaca he was again badly wounded. He fell between the baffle lines of the contending forces, but managed to drag his weary and painful way to the cabin of a friendly negro, who there sheltered him until he was found by his comrades and given proper attention. He received his honorable discharge after victory had crowned the arms of the Union, and in later years he signalized his continued interest in his old comrades by membership in the Army of the Republic.

After the close of the war Doctor Osborn returned to Darlington, Wisconsin, and soon afterward he became a member of an engineering corps which engaged in surveying work in Kansas and Nebraska. After completing his service in this connection he again returned to Darlington, where he began the study of medicine under the preceptorship of a local physician. In 1869 he came to Cleveland, Ohio, and entered the Cleveland Homeopathic Medical College, and while pursuing his studies in this institution he availed himself also of the preceptorship here kindly offered in the office of Dr. D. H. Beckwith, who was at that time one of the representative physicians and surgeons of the city. In due course he received from the Homeopathic College his degree of Doctor of Medicine; and in establishing himself in practice at Cleveland he opened an office on Erie Street, or the present East Ninth Street, where he became associated in practice with Dr. William Saunders. After his marriage, in 1872, he maintained his office in his home, at the corner of Huron Road and Prospect Street. On this site was eventually erected the modern structure which bears his name and is known as the Osborn Building. It was in this building that the Doctor had his well equipped offices at the time of his death. He gained a large and representative practice that fully attested his professional ability and personal popularity, and gained specially high reputation as a diagnostician, in which connection his interposition was much in demand on the part of his professional confreres. Doctor Osborn was identified with leading professional organizations, including the American Institute of Homeopathy, was a republican in political allegiance, and at the time of his death he was president off the Cleveland Philosophical Society, in the affairs of which he had long been influential.

On the 6th of February, 1872, was solemnized the marriage of Doctor Osborn and Miss Mary King, daughter of the late Zenas King, a distinguished Cleveland citizen to whom a memoir is dedicated in the preceding sketch. Since the death of her husband Mrs. Osborn has continued her residence in Cleveland, and her beautiful home, at 2597 Guilford Road, is a center of gracious hospitality and of much social activity of representative character. The Doctor is survived also by one daughter, Eleanor, who is the wife of Samuel H. Moore, of Cleveland. Mr. and Mrs. Moore became the parents of three children, of whom the second, Homer Osborn, died in October, 1923, at the age of fifteen years. Jane, elder of the two surviving children, remains at the parental home, and Edward also continues to reside in Cleveland.

A History of Cuyahoga County
and the City of Cleveland
By: William R. Coates
The American Historical Society
Chicago and New York, 1924

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