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Below is a family biography included in History of Lee County, Iowa published by Western Historical Company in 1879.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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BECKLEY, CHARLES A., farmer, Sec. 9; P. O. Montrose; Mr. Beckley was born in Lawrence Co., Ohio, in 1831; his father. Solomon Beckley, was a pioneer of Lee Co.; he came to Farmington, Van Buren Co., in 1841, and removed in 1844, to Montrose, where he engaged in mercantile business for one year; he then purchased the farm now owned and occupied by his son Charles; he was a member of the Presbyterian Church for fifty years, always contributing liberally to the support of the Gospel. Ever laboring in the cause of education, and in all projects for public improvement; he was formerly a Whig; a Republican after the organization of that party, and strongly Antislavery in his views; he was a lawyer by profession. He planted a fine orchard on his farm in 1846; its fruit was about the first evidence of the fact that apples maybe successfully cultivated in this portion of Iowa. Mr. Solomon Beckley died in 1874, at the age of 82 years; his wife, Mrs. Laura Beckley, still survives, at the advanced age of 85 years. Mr. Charles A. Beckley married in 1855, Josephine Simmons, a native of Ohio; born in 1834; they have had eight children; four now living — Henry S., Mary I., Laura C. and Louis S. Mr. Beckley was Township Clerk for the years 1872 and 1873; is Assessor for 1879. Mr. Henry Simmons, a brother-in-law of Mr. Beckley’s, resides with the latter; he was born in Ohio in 1832; came to Iowa in 1844, and to Montrose in 1851; was educated at Yellow Springs College, Des Moines Co. He enlisted in 1861, in the 2d Iowa Inf.; remained with his regiment two years; participated in the battles of Fort Donelson, Pittsburg Landing, Corinth, Iuka, etc.; was promoted to a captaincy in the 55th U. S. C. Inf.; was discharged at Baton Rouge, La., December,1865; he went to Montana in 1866, and engaged in mining; he lost his sight by an explosion in the mines, in 1870, and returned; is now an occasional contributor to several newspapers, under the nom de plume of Petros.

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This family biography is one of 668 biographies included in The History of Lee County, Iowa published in 1879.  For the complete description, click here: Lee County, Iowa History and Genealogy

View additional Lee County, Iowa family biographies: Lee County, Iowa Biographies

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