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Deen, Eli


Posted By: mjv (email)
Date: 10/9/2020 at 17:16:43

Eli Deen, a farmer and stock-raiser, residing on section 7, Lime Creek Township, was born in McLean County, Ill., May 17, 1846. He is the son of Enos and Lucy (Fordice) Deen, the former a native of Virginia, and the latter of Ohio. The father was reared on a farm in his native State, and followed the vocation of a farmer. He moved to Ohio, where he became acquainted with and was united in marriage with Miss Lucy Fordice, the marriage being celebrated Dec. 27, 1827. She was the daughter of Stanton Fordice, a native of Scotland, who emigrated to America in the year of 1801. He was in the War of 1812, and therefore had only been a citizen of America eleven years when he was called to defend her borders. He died in Illinois in 1840. Mrs. Deen, the mother of our subject, was born in Morgan County, Ohio, March 14, 1809, and is now making her home with her son, Eli, and is a well-preserved woman both in body and mind. Her father was a farmer in Ohio. He improved a farm in that State and then removed to McLean County, Ill., in 1850, and there bought 160 acres of land, which he improved and made his home until the fall of 1852, when he removed to Wapello County, Iowa, remaining there until the spring of 1853, when he came to Lime Creek Township, Washington County, where he bought 220 acres of land, and was one of the first settlers in the township. He will be well remembered by all old settlers in the county.

Mrs. Deen has lived to witness the many wonderful changes that have been made in the county since her first arrival, and has shared the sorrow and the pleasure of the people of Lime Creek Township for many years. She was separated from her life companion Dec. 31, 1855. He was a minister of the United Brethren Church, and was engaged in that work about fifteen years. While living in Illinois their house was the home of all traveling ministers, and many were brought to see the light and truth of the Gospel within their walls. Ten children were born unto them: Nancy died and was buried in Ohio: Susanna was the wife of George Phillips, and is deceased: James M. and John are deceased; Lucinda, deceased, died about six weeks after her marriage; Amanda M., deceased, was the wife of A.J. Treadwell; George died Illinois; Enos and Lucy both died in infancy; Eli, the subject of this sketch, is the only one living of the ten children. The mother, now seventy-eight years of age, looks back over her life, and notwithstanding the many sorrows that have come to her, still knows that she has done her part in life, and now only awaits the call to meet her loved ones on the other shore. She united with the Methodist Episcopal Church in 1824, and has lived a faithful Christian life for sixty-three years, and by her example many have been led to see the way that leads to life everlasting.

The early life of Eli Deen, the subject of this sketch, was spent upon the farm and in attending the common schools. At the age of eighteen he was called to the management of the farm, but he was fully competent for the undertaking, and under his care it has steadily been improved. He now owns 220 acers of fine land, with a good farm house and all necessary out-buildings, and also has on hand a fine grade of Short-horn cattle. He was untied in marriage with Miss Caroline C. Beohme, Feb. 17, 1870. She was born Oct. 12, 1851, in Vermont, and is a daughter of William and Mary A. (Devan) Beohme, the former a native of Germany and the latter of England. They are residents of English River Township. Mr. and Mrs. Deen are the parents of three children: Clara E., born Dec. 17, 1871; George B., Jan. 24, 1874, and Elsie A., Nov. 5, 1876. They are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and politically, he is a Republican.

Benjamin Deen, the grandfather of our subject, came from England at the age of twelve years, and settled in Virginia, where he was bound out to a man by the name of Collins, and at the age of sixteen, entered the army and served five years in the Revolutionary War. He then re-enlisted and served three years longer, Collins receiving the sum due his services. He then returned to Virginia, where he afterward lived and reared a family.

Source: Portrait and Biographical Album of Washington County, Iowa (1887). Excerpt from Biographical Sketch of Eli Deen, pages 300-301.


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