Dr. Nicholas Senn - the Man

Vol. XXIV No. 3 - FALL 2013

Dr. Nicholas Senn was a nationally renowned surgeon of his time. He was born in Buck’s Canton of St. Gaul Switzerland on October 31, 1844. When he was eight years old, the family moved to America and settled in Ashford Wisconsin where Dr. Senn spent his boyhood days. Two days after graduating from high school he entered the Chicago Medical College. He graduated in 1868 with first honors, afterwards going back to Fond du Lac where he practiced medicine for five years.

A few years later, he returned to Europe, where he studied medicine at the University of Munich, graduating in 1878 with high honors. He returned to the United States, practicing medicine in Milwaukee for a short time, then moved to Chicago, where he also became a prominent figure in the surgical world.

Dr. Senn founded the American Association of Military Surgeons, of which he was president for two years, and the Association of Military Surgeons of Illinois, over which he presided from the day of the formation of the Association to the day of his death.

He was president of the American Medical Association for one year. He was also a delegate to the International Medical Congress at Berlin, at Moscow, at Lisbon and at Madrid.

He died January 2, 1908, and just over a year later, on March 20, 1909, the Chicago Board of Education named the planned new high school for Edgewater and Rogers Park for him.

– information taken from the Senn Handbook, called “The Green Book,” 1930 edition