Sheldon Beach, BiographyPorter County biographical sketches . . . .

Transcribed biography of Sheldon Beach


To the person who closely applies himself to any occupation which he has chosen as his calling in life, there can only come one result - that of success and a high place in the esteem of those among whom he has made his home. Mr. Beach is no exception to the rule, for it has only been by industry and strict attention to agricultural pursuits that he has attained to the position and honor which he now enjoys.

The early members of the family resided in the vicinity of Litchfield, Connecticut, from which place they removed to Canada when Sheldon Beach was about one year old. The father and mother, Ezra and Polly Beach, had six children, all of whom, with the exception of the youngest, was born in Connecticut: Lyman, Polly, Truman, Harmon, Sheldon and Philo, the latter's birth having occurred on British soil in Canada. For some time Mr. Beach tilled a farm in what was then known as the lower part of Upper Canada, and several of the sons worked at barn and house building. Here they remained until 1839, when they came to Porter County, Indiana, where they purchased land from the Government. While residing in Canada, Sheldon Beach was married to Experience Sheldon, daughter of Jeremiah and Experience (Fuller) Sheldon, who were the parents of nine children: Horace, Riley, Burton, Amelia, Richard, Francis, Jane, Alexander and Experience. Mr. and Mrs. Sheldon were born respectively April 8, 1768, and December 29, 1775, at the beginning of the Revolution, their marriage occurring December 19, 1797, after which they resided for some time near Dover. The mother was a native of Vermont, and her grandfather, who was of Irish descent, was born on the ocean while his parents were enroute to this country. Mr. Sheldon was of English descent, and his parents resided in Vermont until the two eldest children were born, when they removed to Canada (1801), and settled near Rockwell, Leeds County. One of their sons, Francis, left Canada and went to Michigan and from there to Iowa, where he was when last heard from. Two other sons were associated with the Mormon church at Salt Lake City for a short time, and two members of the Beach family had also joined the church in Canada, but while on their way to the "Promised Land" they came through Porter County, Indiana, and were prevailed upon by their relatives here to abandon their contemplated journey, which they accordingly did, and settled here.

Mrs. Experience Beach's grandfather was taken by the Indians to Quebec, and put aboard a British prison ship, where he died with the smallpox. The British hired Indians and white renegades to go through the new settlements in Vermont and kidnap all the white men they could find, and kept them to exchange for their own soldiers that were captured in battle or elsewhere. Her grandfather and two uncles were thus taken. One of the uncles escaped, and returned to tell the story. Her grandfather moved back to the settlement with three other families. All they took back with them was what a span of horses could carry. The distance was 200 miles. For fear of the Indians they traveled nights and laid-by daytimes. The marriage of Sheldon Beach and Experience Sheldon occurred on the 14th of May, 1846, at which time Mr. Beach was twenty-seven years of age, and five days after the celebration of their nuptials they started for the States, coming to this region via the Welland Canal, Niagara Falls, thence by rail to Buffalo, New York; then by steamer to Chicago, which place was then but an insignificant village; and from there, by wagon, to Porter County. They took up a claim of 100 acres, on which had been erected a small log cabin, and in this abode they lived for about four years. Six children were born to them in this county: Amelia, born May 29, 1848; Murray J., born January 17, 1855; Asenath, born August 22, 1857, the three others dying in infancy. Amelia married Jared Blake; Murray J. married Irena Lee December 8, 1875, but she died December 31, 1881, leaving two children: Abbie M., born February 20, 1877, and Dell I., born July 13, 1879. In 1886 he married Mary Brown, and by her has two children: Clarence and Claudie. Asenath married H. F. Black. Mr. Beach died November 16, 1882, at the age of sixty-five years, since which sad event Mrs. Beach has had the management of the old home farm. She is now in her seventy-fifth year, but is a remarkably well-preserved woman, active, energetic and in good health. The daughter, Asenath (Mrs. Black), resides on the old home farm with her mother and she and her husband have an interesting family of five children: Carlton E., born January 19, 1883; Walter G., born April 26, 1885; Fred H., born April 8, 1887; Louise M., born February 9, 1889; and Floyd S., born August 13, 1891. Mrs. Beach has one brother and sister living, and of the Beach family but two remain, Harmon and Philo, both quite advanced in years. The Beach family has been, and are now, extensive laud owners, and their name will long be associated with the early pioneer history of Porter County, and with those honorable pioneers who gave the best energies of their lives in subduing the forests and in making this part of Indiana one of the best farming regions of the State.

Source: Goodspeed Brothers. 1894. Pictorial and Biographical Record of La Porte, Porter, Lake and Starke Counties, Indiana. Chicago, Illinois: Goodspeed Brothers. 569 p.
Page(s) in Source: 49-51

This biography has been transcribed exactly as it was originally published in the source. Please note that we do not provide photocopies or digital scans of biographies appearing on this website.

Biography transcribed by Steven R. Shook


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