The memory of John S. Beeler, for the past forty five years a resident of Poweshiek county, carries him back
still further to the pioneer days of Iowa, when a large part of this great state was yet open prairie and little
was known as to its resources.
He was born at Marion, Iowa, September 13, 1845, and was a member of a family of sixteen children, eight sons and
eight daughters, of Fred and Nancy (Dollarhide) Beeler, the former of whom was a native of West Virginia and the
latter of Indiana. They were married in 1836 at Indianapolis, and in 1837 came to Iowa and lived for several years
at Muscatine, where the father engaged in work in connection with the river traffic. From that place he moved to
Linn county, Iowa, and took up land at Marion, being one of the early settlers of that section. The Indians were
still wandering at large through the country when he arrived in Linn county and he maintained with them the most
friendly relations, often trading horses with his visitors. This was a favorite diversion of the early days. He
was a man of good business ability and a large landowner, possessing one thousand acres of good Linn county land.
In politics he gave his support to the democratic party, and in religious belief affiliated with the Methodist
church, of which he was deacon and trustee. He took a great interest in education and was a valued member of the
school board. A man of many sterling characteristics, he was greatly respected wherever he was known. He died February
12, 1895, having then reached the age of eighty one years. Mrs. Beeler was called away five years later.
John S. Beeler, of this review, received his early education in the public schools of Marion, Iowa, and also had
the advantage of attendance at the high, school in the same town. He was reared under the favorable conditions
of farm life, and even as a boy displayed remarkable strength and ability in his work. One day, in a few hours,
he split eighty five railroad ties. He followed this occupation for twenty seven days and then in December, 1866,
arrived in Poweshiek county and went to work on shares under his uncle, George M. Beeler. In 1868 his father gave
him a farm in Linn county, which he soon afterward disposed of, and settled on productive land in Poweshiek county
where he has since continued. He is now the owner of six hundred acres, and his wife owns sixty eight acres in
this county. He also owns three hundred and forty acres in Missouri. He has for thirty five years been a large
raiser and feeder of stock, devoting his attention especially to Hereford cattle and the breeding of Percheron
horses, in which he has attained an enviable reputation.
On the 22d of January, 1871, Mr. Beeler was united in marriage to Miss Ellen C. Beeler, a daughter of George M.
and Nancy (Carpenter) Beeler, and of this union ten children have been born, namely: Ira C., who is now living
in Washingtown township; Ora F., who lives at Hugo, Colorado; George F., of Pleasant township; May, who became
the wife of L. A. Winters, of Jacob, Iowa; Nancy A., who married Joe H. Bradley, of Missouri; Mary, who married
E. S. Morrison, a business man of Grinnell; John Cleveland; Louis Clark, now engaged in farming in Sugar Creek
township; Janie, who married John Reed, of Pleasant township; and Clara, who is now a student in the Grinnell high
Politically Mr. Beeler gives his allegiance to the democratic party. He has been a candidate for member of the
lower house of the state legislature at two different elections but, his party being in the minority, he was unsuccessful
and met with defeat. In religious belief he adheres to the faith of the Society of Friends and through life he
has aimed to be guided by the teachings of this worthy organization. Fortunate in possessing qualities of mind
and heart which are inseparable from honorable manhood, he won the respect of neighbors and acquaintances and for
many years has been a tower of strength in the community. He has always been loyal to every trust and has ever
been ready to assist in every movement for the upbuilding of the. section. It is with pleasure that this record
is here given of one of the clear headed the noble hearted men of poweshiek county.
History of Poweshiek County, Iowa
A Record of settlement, organization
progress and achievement
By: Prof. L. F. Parker
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.
Poweshiek County, IA
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