John Fonda Whitbeck was born at Claverack, Columbia County, New York, in 1812. He graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and Fairfield Medical College in Herkimer County. He established medical practices in East Avon and Lima before moving to Rochester in about 1850. His thirty years of medical practice in Rochester included fourteen years as visiting surgeon at the Rochester City Hospital where he was one of the first members of the medical staff. His sudden death at age sixty-nine in 1880 was marked by warm memorial tributes from friends and colleagues on the medical staff and Lady Managers of the Hospital, the Rochester Medical, Rochester Pathological, and Monroe County Medical Societies.
They recounted his hard work, medical skill, devotion to the medical care of indigent patients and encouragement of young physicians. (courtesy John Olson, M.D.)