ITS HISTORY AND TRADITION
H. L. Brereton
Dr. Harold L. Brereton, of Emmetsburg, a veteran of the World war and a
graduate of Rush Medical College, has risen rapidly in public favor and esteem
and is today numbered among the leaders in his profession in Palto Alto county.
Born in Creston, Illinois, on the 17th of July, 1885, he is a son of Rev.
James Edwin and Mary Louise (Linhoff) Brereton. For many years the father was
one of the leading preachers of Iowa, having served sixteen years as pastor
of the First Congregational church of Emmetsburg, in which city he is now
living, having been compelled by failing health to retire from the active work of
the ministry. He was born in Will county, Illinois, October 6, 1857, and is
a son of Peter and Martha (Marshall) Brereton, both of whom were born near
Manchester, England, where they were reared and married. In 1857 they embark
ed in a sailing vessel for the United States, being six weeks on the sea and
landing at New York city. They came directly west to Will county, Illinois,
where the father engaged in farming, though prior to coming to this country he
had been employed in cotton mills at Manchester. Eventually he moved to
Clinton county, Illinois, which was his home for forty-seven years, his death
occurring there in 1905, at the age of seventy-three years.
James E. Brereton attended the public schools of Clinton county, Illinois, and pursued a classical course in the University of Illinois. He was prepared for the ministry in the Chicago Theological Seminary, where he was
graduated, with the degree of Bachelor of Divinity, in 1884. On May 1st of that year he was ordained to the ministry and was appointed to the charge at Creston, Illinois, where he ministered for four years. He then went to Ashland, Nebraska, where he served for six years, after which he was appointed secretary of Doane College, at Crete, Nebraska. One year later he re-entered the active
pastorate at Geneva, Nebraska, where he remained three years, and in 1895 he became pastor of the church at Waverley, Iowa, where he remained in active service for twelve years. In March, 1908, he came to Emmetsburg as pastor of the First Congregational church and for sixteen years faithfully and ably served the interests of this church, his retirement from the active pastorate being only at the insistence of his medical advisor. He has for many years held a position in the forefront of the successful and effective preachers of the Gospel in northwestern Iowa and his pastorate at Emmetsburg was marked by a devotion and zeal that impelled him to work far beyond his strength. A forceful and earnest speaker, a man of the highest Christian ideals and of cordial and social nature, he has long held the love and affection of his people and
the confidence and respect of the entire community.
On August 5, 1884, Rev. Brereton was married to Miss Mary Louise Linhoff, of
Clinton county, Illinois, and they became the parents of four children, two
sons and two daughters, namely: Harold L.; Loring D., a paving contractor of
Emmetsburg; Winifred May, who is the wife of Harold Hall, of Iowa Falls; and
Mary Helen, who is the wife of Herbert C. Baker, a real estate broker at
Lake Worth, Florida. Rev. Brereton is a member of Earnest Lodge No. 399, A. F/
& A. M.; Earnest Chapter, No. 108, R. A. M.; and Holy Grail Commandery, No.
70, K. T.
Harold L. Brereton attended the public schools, graduating from the
Waverley, Iowa, high school in 1904. In the fall of 1905 he entered Grinnell
College, where he was graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Science in 1909.
During the ensuing winter he served as instructor in science at the Worthington
(Minn.) high school, and in the fall of 1910 matriculated in Rush Medical
College, of the University of Chicago, where he was graduated, with the degree
of Doctor of Medicine in 1914. He then served as intern for eighteen months
in the Cook County Hospital, Chicago, and in September, 1916, began the
practice of his profession in Redwood Falls, Minnesota, in association with Drs.
Pease and Flinn. A year later, on the entrance of the United States into the
World war, Dr. Brereton enlisted in the Medical Corps, in which he was
commissioned a first lieutenant. He was first assigned to the base hospital at
Camp Upton, Long Island, New York, and in March, 1918, was transferred to Camp Dix, New Jersey, where he was appointed camp surgeon to the Thirteenth Battalion of the One Hundred and Thirteenth Depot Brigade. He was honorably discharged in January, 1919, and then came to Emmetsburg and engaged in the practice of medicine. He has been more than ordinarily successful and has built up a large and representative practice throughout this section of the county and has the respect of his professional colleagues.
In April, 1918, Dr. Brereton was married to Miss Isabelle C. Bayne, of Fergus, Ontario, Canada, whose death occurred in June, 1919. Fraternally he is a member of Earnest Lodge, No. 399, A. F. & A. M.; Earnest Chapter, No. 108, R.
A. M.; Holy Grail Commandery, No. 70, K. T.; and the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He also belongs to the Phi Beta Phi medical fraternity, the Palo Alto County Medical Society, the Upper Des Moines Medical Society, of which he is now president, the Iowa State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. He is now serving as city physician of Emmetsburg. He is affiliated with the First Congregational church and is a member of its board of deacons. Personally the Doctor is candid and straightforward in all of his relations, is kindly and genial and the circle of his friends is almost
coextensive with the circle of his acquaintances.
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