From A Biographical History of Central Kansas, Vol. I, p. 188
published by The Lewis Publishing Co, Chicago & New York, 1902 


   Myndert Van Patten is a prominent physician engaged in practice in Sterling, and his profession is meeting with a very high degree of success, owing to his capable control of business affairs, his comprehensive knowledge of the underlying principles of the science of medicine and his deep and abiding interest in humanity aside from his profession.  He was born in Sterling, Cayuga county, New York, in 1835.  His father, Christian Van Patten, was a native of Albany county, New York, born May 4, 1801, and the grandfather, John Van Patten, was born in the Empire state, about 1765.  His death occurred in 1845, when he had attained the age of eighty years.  He reared three sons and three daughters.  Among this number was Christian Van Patten, who after attaining years of maturity, married Miss Mary Relyea, who was born January 20, 1835, and gave her hand in marriage to Mr Van Patten when nineteen years of age.  She died in Sterling, Kansas, when almost ninety-seven years of age.  They were the parents of fourteen children, of whom five sons and seven daughters reached mature years, while four sons and four daughters are yet living, namely:  David, a farmer residing in Sterling who has one son and two daughters; Herman, an agriculturist of the same locality who has one son; Myndert, of this review; James, who resides on the old homestead where the grandfather located more than one hundred years ago; Nancy, the widow of Charles Lyon, of Sterling; Susan, wife of George Blackwell, of Kankakee, Illinois; Mrs Rachel Marvin, of Sterling; and Mrs Isabell Duncan, a widow also living at Sterling.  The father of this family died in Sterling, in 1893.  He followed farming as his life work and thus provided a good home for his family, also giving to his children educational advantages that well fitted them for life’s practical duties.  He took an active interest in public affairs and was greatly esteemed for his genuine worth of character.

   Dr Van Patten was educated in Wayne county academy, and after completing his literary course he prepared for professional life in the Albany Medical College, in which he was graduated with the class of 1864.  He first began practice in Hannibal, New York, in 1865, and a year later removed to Sterling, where he resided for three years.  His next place of business was in Chatsworth, Livingston county, Illinois, where he was associated with Dr Hunt in practice and in the drug business for eight years.  For four years he was a resident of Peoria, Illinois, where he engaged in practice as a regular.  For the past twenty-two years he has ministered to the needs of suffering humanity as a homeopathic physician in Sterling, Kansas, coming to this place from Peoria, Illinois, in 1868.

   In the meantime Dr Van Patten had engaged in military service.  He enlisted at Sterling, New York, as a member of Company F, One Hundred and Tenth New York Infantry, in 1862, but in February, 1863, was honorably discharged on account of physical disability.  After his return home he was united in marriage, in Hannibal, New York, in 1865, to Miss Ada Foot, who died in Kansas about 1874, leaving five of her six children, four daughters and one son, namely:  Isabelle L, wife of Cassius Elliott, of Farmington, New Mexico, by whom she has six children; George, who is living in the same place; Mamie, the wife of Riley Peterson, of Hodgman county, Kansas, by whom she has two children; Fernette and Winnie, who are still under the parental roof.  The Doctor was again married in 1887, his second union being with Miss Lettie M Muse, of Greenfield, Ohio, a daughter of a Presbyterian minister, and his first wife was a daughter of a Baptist preacher.  The children born to Dr Van Patten by his second marriage are:  Myndert, who is now thirteen years of age; Guy, a lad of nine years; and Lowell, who is seven years of age.  Socially the Doctor is connected with the Grand Army of the Republic and is now serving his third year as commander of Mead Post, No. 14, a fact which indicates his present personal popularity, for the office is not usually accorded to one man for so long a time.  In politics he is a Republican and has served as school director and as mayor of Sterling, exercising his official prerogatives in promoting the best interests of the city.  In the campaign of 1900 he was chairman of the Republican committee and labored earnestly in the interest of McKinley and Roosevelt.  For twenty-two years he has occupied his present residence in Sterling and is recognized as one of the most capable physicians and prominent citizens of the neighborhood.  His devotion to his profession is marked and arises not only from his love of scientific research, but also from his desire to be a benefit to the world.  His public and private relations are alike above reproach and as a friend and physician he has won the high regard of all and become a popular resident of his adopted county.