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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company; Elwood Roberts, Editor.  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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REV. THOMAS R. BEEBER, for over eighteen years pastor of the First Presbyterian church of Norristown, is a son of Teter D. ana Mary J. (Artley) Beeber. He was born at Muncy, this state, June 18, 1848. The name is of German origin and was originally written Bieber. The Beeber family trace their ancestry to the Palatinate, from which so large a number of immigrants came into Pennsylvania, on account of the religious persecution endured in their native land.

The ancestor of Dr. Beeber came from Germany in the ship “Jeneffer,” commanded by Captain George Kerr, and landed at Philadelphia, November 6, 1764. His son, John, born near Wurtemberg, Germany, in 1762, was reared in Berks county, this state, and served as a non-commissioned officer in the Revolutionary war. He enlisted in the third battalion of the Pennsylvania line, commanded by Colonel John Shee, and was captured by the British at Harlem Heights, November 16, 1776, but escaped six days later. He served under Colonel Daniel Undree in the second battalion of the Berks county militia at the battle of Brandywine, and served actively in the American army until the close of the war and the acknowledgement of our independence by Great Britain.

John Beeber was a farmer. He married Julia Dimner of Lycoming county, to which place he removed after the Revolutionary war. She was the daughter of George and Julia Dimner. John Beeber’s son, Colonel Jacob Beeber, was born in Muncy valley, September 10, 1786, and became a man of considerable prominence, serving in the militia and commanding a regiment. He was a devoted member of the Evangelical Lutheran church. He was also a farmer, and a Democrat in politics. He married Mary Elizabeth Dimner and had several children. His eldest son, Teter D. Beeber, was the father of Rev. Dr. Beeber.

Teter D. Beeber at first engaged in farming and afterwards became a mechanic and a coal dealer. He was intensely opposed to the system of southern slavery. He became a Republican, in spite of the opposition of his family, at a time when it required some courage to take this step. His three brothers went with him into the Republican party. In 1861 he was elected county commissioner in Lycoming, being the only Republican who was successful that year.

Teter D. Beeber was one of the founders of the Muncy Lutheran church, organized November 7, 1852, was for many years one of its principal financial supporters, and filled every office in the church open to a layman. He also took interest in municipal affairs, serving for many years as a councilman and school director. A man of integrity, affability, and of great kindness of heart, he was beloved by all who knew him. He died May 6, 1876, in his sixty-first year. He was married on March 25, 1841, to Mary J. Artley, they having three sons: J. A., a lawyer of Williamsport; Dimner, an attorney-at-law, and a prominent citizen of Philadelphia; and Rev. Thomas R. Beeber.

Mrs. Beeber died December 2, 1869, aged fifty-two years. She was of Holland descent and a daughter of John and Christina (Duck) Artley. The Artley family was resident of Berks county until 1785 and Solomon Artley enlisted during the war of 1812 but was never called into active service.

Thomas R. Beeber prepared for college at Selinsgrove. He entered Pennsylvania College at Gettysburg, in 1865, winning second graduation honors of his class in 1869. In the autumn of that year he entered Andover Theological Seminary, becoming valedictorian of the class of 1872, after which he took a post-graduate course. In January, 1873, he became associate pastor of Rev. Charles Beecher, of the First Congregational church, of Georgetown, Massachusetts. Remaining there two years, he resigned to accept a call, extended June 8, 1875, from the Mahoning Presbyterian church, Danville, Pennsylvania, serving in the capacity of pastor until March 8, 1880, when he accepted a call from the Second Presbyterian church, at Scranton. This pastorate extended over seven years, a handsome stone church being erected by the congregation during that time at the cost of eighty thousand dollars. The call from the First Presbyterian church of Norristown, which he has served ever since, was extended March 21, 1887.

On August 17, 1874, he was united in marriage by the Rev. Charles Beecher to Mary F. Haley, of Georgetown, Massachusetts, daughter of J. K. Harriman. The couple have had two children, both now deceased: John Artley, born August 22, 1875, died January 11, 1889; Whitman Boynton, born May 26, 1877, died June 27, 1885. Dr. Beeber has one adopted son, Kimball H. Beeber, who is a child of Mrs. Beeber’s first marriage.

Dr. Beeber spent three months, in 1878, in a European tour, visiting many noted places. His health having somewhat declined, he, with Mrs. Beeber, spent some months on another European tour in the summer of 1902. His degree, Doctor of Divinity, was conferred by Lafayette College in 1891.

As a speaker Dr. Beeber is eloquent, logical and pleasing. He is the author of several historical works of value, including the histories of the First Congregational church of Georgetown, Massachusetts, and the Second Presbyterian church, of Scranton, Pennsylvania. His pamphlet “History of the Presbyterian Church in the United States” is comprehensive and interesting. He is a member of the Montgomery Historical Society and takes active interest in its proceedings. He is a member of the Presbyterian Historical Society, Philadelphia, and also a member of the Board of Ministerial Relief of the Presbyterian church. While at Scranton he was elected director of the School for the Deaf and did much valuable work in its behalf.

Dr. Beeber belongs to the progressive element of Presbyterianism, but is thoroughly conservative in his views. He is deeply interested in home and foreign missions and is indefatigable in his pastoral work, leaving nothing undone to promote the interests of a large and cultured congregation, who thoroughly appreciate his ministerial work.

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This family biography is one of more than 1,000 biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

View additional Montgomery County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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