Abner S. Beels, Jr.

(Page 130)

Abner S. (Jane2, John1) was born in Parma, Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, July 18, 1825. His boyhood was spent in helping his father to clear the farm which became their home. He obtained a common school education.

When 18 years old he went to Plymouth township, Sheboygan Co., Wis., where he purchased and cleared an 80 acre farm. Here on March 18, 1849, he was married to Miss Martha M. Burton, who was born Sept. 4, 1829.

In 1858 he sold his farm and moved his family to the vicinity of Rochester, Minn., where he took up a homestead on the prairie. He remained here, however, only one winter when he returned to Wisconsin and purchased a farm near the one he sold the year before.

In 1861 he left Wisconsin and returned to Parma, Ohio. He worked his father's farm one year. He then purchased a canal boat, from 1864 to 1868 was engaged in carrying freight from Cleveland to Massillon and other points on the canal and returning with a cargo of coal.

His family resided in Brighton (now South Brooklyn) for a time and in Brooklyn Center from 1864 to 1868.

He gave up boating and having prepared two covered wagons, or prairie schooners as they were often called, in September, 1868, he removed his family and his goods to Hazelton, Buchanan Co., Iowa, and later to Sumner, Bremer Co., Iowa. Here he engaged in farming and carpentering until 1883 when he went to South Dakota and settled on a 160 acre preemption claim four miles from Wessington Springs, where he lived until 1903.

His wife, Martha, died Jan. 24, 1892, after having shared his joys and sorrows for 43 years. She was a sincere Christian, a faithful wife and a devoted mother.

On Dec. 14, 1893, he married Mrs. Prudence Maxwell, who was born Jan. 15, 1839, in Allegheny Co., N.Y. She died in 1903. He then went to live in the home of his youngest daughter, Mrs. Cora F. Hausner, near Wessington Springs. About two years before his death he had a paralytic stroke which made him nearly helpless. He died April 16, 1907, at the home of his daughter.

Mr. Beels was an active, hardworking man till near the close of his life, and endured much of hardship and privation. But he bore all uncomplainingly and with a humble trust in the wisdom of God. In boyhood he united with the Freewill Baptist church in Parma. On leaving Parma he united with the Congregational church of which he was ever a devoted and consistent member.

His last words were "It is enough," and he passed peacefully away.


George Nelson, b. May 19, 1850.

Alfred Elihu, b. Jan 5, 1852, d. Jan 27, 1861.

Alice Ellen, b. Nov. 14, 1853.

Albert Ai, b. Sept. 25, 1855, d. Sept. 1, 1890.

Clara Delila, b. April 16, 1858, d. May 14, 1874.

Julia Minnie, b. April 26, 1860.

Charles Henry, b. Oct. 7, 1863, d. Oct. 11, 1863.

Cora Frances, b. Dec. 2, 1865.

Lewis Abner, b. Aug. 14, 1872.

The six oldest children were born in Linden township, near Plymouth, in Sheboygan Co., Wis.

Cora Frances was born in Brooklyn, Ohio, and Lewis Abner in Sumner, Iowa.

George Nelson Beels

(Page 132)

George Nelson Beels, (Abner3, Jane2, John1) eldest child of Abner S. Beels Jr., and Martha M. Beels, was born May 19, 1850, in Linden township, near Plymouth, in Sheboygan Co., Wis., where his father cleared a farm in the timber. At the age of 8 years the family moved to Rochester, Minn., where they wintered on a homestead. They returned the following spring to farm in Linden, Wis., and lived there until 1861 when they moved to Parma township, in Cuyahoga Co., Ohio. After a year spent on the farm, father and son spent the next five years on the Ohio canal, running from Cleveland to Portsmouth. The family was stationed at Brighton and later at Brooklyn, near Cleveland, where George attended school and high school at Brooklyn.

In 1868 the family emigrated by wagon to Buchanan Co., Iowa, where he attended high school, worked on the farm, taught country school for several winter terms, spent one year peddling sewing machines, and finally graduated from the law school of the Iowa State University at Iowa City in June, 1875.

In the spring of 1876 he settled down to the practice of law at Norfolk, Neb., where he has since resided. For a time he was associated with the law firm of Beels & Schoregge. He became an active worker in the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and in 1879 served as Grand Master. He afterward served for two terms of two years each as Grand Representative in the Sovereign Lodge of the Order. He was author of Beels' Digest of the Odd Fellows' laws of Nebraska. He was active in all public matters, social and political. He was twice defeated, in 1908 and 1910, in campaign for member of the Legislature on republican ticket.

In 1893, after a semi-invalidism lasting thirty years, broken health and abandoned by the doctors, he was restored to health through Christian Science, and has since been a student and practitioner of the cult. In June, 1889, he was married to his cousin, Mrs. Cora A. Beels Gray. They have no children.

Albert A. Beels

(Page 137)

Albert A. (Abner3, Jane2, John1) was born in Linden, Wis., Sept. 25, 1855. He was a resident of Cuyahoga Co., Ohio, from 1861 to 1868. Here he attended school in Brighton and in Brooklyn near Cleveland. During most of the time his father was engaged in running a canal boat. Albert was employed as a driver on the canal. After the family removed to Iowa he attended school in Sumner. He went to Kansas where he taught school for a few years. But failing health led him to go to the home of his father, Abner S. Beels, near Wessington Springs, S. Dak., where he died Sept. 1, 1890. His sister writes, quot;He died in the triumphs of the living faith."

Clara D. Beels

(Page 138)

Clara D. Beels, (Abner3, Jane2, John1) daughter of Abner S. and Martha Beels, had her birth in Linden, Wis., April 16, 1858. When she was 3 years old her father moved to Parma, Ohio. From 1862 to 1868 they lived in Brooklyn village, a suburb of Cleveland. In 1868 they went to Hazelton, Iowa, and after a time to Sumner, Iowa, where Clara died May 14, 1874, aged 16 years. She was an amiable, lovable girl. Although not a member of the church she was a Christian and died rejoicing that she was going to be forever with Jesus, whom she loved.

Lewis Abner Beels

(Page 145)

Lewis A. (Abner3, Jane2, John1) is the youngest child of Abner S. and Martha Beels. He was born August 14, 1871 in Hazelton, Iowa. When 12 years of age he went with his father's family to Media, S. Dak. Having finished the common school branches in his home school he attended and graduated from the Mitchel University at Mitchel, S. Dak. He then graduated from business college at Sioux City, Iowa. He then learned the carpenter's trade. For several years he worked as a carpenter in Kansas City, Mo. Mr. Beels united with the Baptist church June 3, 1888 in Media. He was married on July 16, 1903 to Mrs. Estelline Johnson of Sioux City. They went to Bonesteel County, S. Dakota in the fall of 1911 and took up a homestead claim there. They have no children.

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