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Delaware County, Iowa


 Biography Directory

Franklin L. and James M. Beal


Delhi Twp.



Franklin L. Beal

     Franklin L. and James M. Beal were the members of the well known firm of Beal Brothers, of whom only the younger brother now survives. The brothers were both natives of Natick, Massachusetts, the former born November 2, 1852, and the latter November 5, 1854. They were sons of Louis and Elizabeth (Fogg) Beal, both natives of the Bay state. In August, 1853, the father made a visit to this county in order to investigate the conditions here, and was so well pleased that in August, 1855, he brought his family here and entered land in Adams township. However, he did not actively engage in farming to a great extent, as he was a stock buyer and shipper and devoted the greater part of his time to that business. As Iowa was then but sparsely settled, it was necessary for him to haul his hogs and drive his stock to Dubuque, a distance of some forty miles, in order to find a market for them. During the war he owned and conducted a general store at Delhi, which enterprise proved a profitable one. He was a man who favored progress and advancement in all phases of life and was always ready to aid in any way possible movements which sought to benefit the community. He was himself law abiding and used his influence to secure the enforcement of law. Withal, however, he was a very charitable man and many a person in dire need received kindly aid from him. He passed away July 9, 1895, and his widow survived him until January 27, 1900.
    To Mr. and Mrs. Louis Beal were born nine children, of whom two sons died in infancy. Sarah E.,

six weeks old, who has since made her home on the Oak Grove farm. Mr. Clough, associated with others, purchased a sawmill at Grove Creek and operated it successfully until the boiler exploded, killing George Messer and seriously injuring Mr. Clough, who then returned to Delhi and engaged in business there. He endeavored to join the army at the time of the Civil war, but the recruiting officers would not accept him, so toward the end of the war he became a sutler and accompanied the Sixth Iowa Cavalry to Dakota, being stationed at Fort Randall. Afterward he returned to Delaware county, where he remained for a time but eventually went to Crawford county, Iowa, where he was elected to the office of sheriff, acting in that position at the time of his death. Rosina, the second child of Mr. and Mrs. Beal, became the wife of John Keith and resides in Delhi. They have two children, Lewis K. and Nellie. Before her marriage to Mr. Keith, Rosina was the wife of Thomas A. Twiss, who was deputy recorder of Delaware county in 1871. They had one daughter, Elizabeth Beatrice, now the wife of Charles Palmer, of New Hampshire.
     Franklin L. and James M. were the next children of Louis Beal in the order of birth. Mary E., their younger sister, became the wife of A. L. Gleason, of Ames.
Iowa, and they have five children. Hattie Beal resides with her brother, James, at Oak Grove, the old homestead. Emma, the youngest, is the wife of J. R. Holden, of Porterville, California, and they have two sons.  Franklin L. Beal, the senior partner in the firm of Beal Brothers, was but two years of age when he accompanied his parents to Delhi, Iowa, where he secured his education in the common schools. After leaving school he worked with his father and later he and his brother, James M., became associated in their business undertakings. The father and two sons were instrumental in the organization of the Silver Spring Creamery Company, of which Franklin L. was the first manager, conducting the business for six years. This was the most trying time in the history of that institution and it was largely due to his industry, foresight and good business judgment that the business was developed until from handling one thousand pounds of milk a day at the start it had increased until at the end of six years they were able to turn over thirty five thousand dollars. Franklin L. Beal passed away September 17, 1910, the unfortunate victim of an accident on the brothers' farm. He was thrown under the knives of a corn binder and had both legs severed, causing his death. He was a man of strong character and decided opinions and was highly respected by all who knew him. In his death the community lost a citizen of sterling worth.
     James M. Beal, who was the partner of Franklin L. Beal, now owns two good farms in Delhi township-his home place, familiarly known as Oak Grove Farm, including two hundred and sixty five acres of land, a part of which is within the corporation limits of Delhi, while the other property comprises one hundred and eighty four acres. He received his education in the Delhi public schools and in his spare time assisted his father in his work as stockman. At one time his father and a Mr. Johnson drove eighteen hundred sheep from the Western Reserve in Ohio to Delaware county, the trip taking the whole summer. When he grew to manhood and started out in life for himself, however, he decided to follow agriculture and became associated with his father and elder brother on the home place. The brothers continued to invest in land until at one time they had become the owners of a thousand acres. James M. Beal still operates the home farm and raises high grade stock, feeding much of the corn which he raises to his cattle and hogs, and finds animal husbandry very profitable. He has improved his place by erecting a number of substantial and well planned buildings and keeps everything about the farm in excellent repair. He also owns one hundred and eighty-four acres of land in the southwestern part of the township and this property yields him a considerable income every year.
     Mr. Beal gives his political allegiance to the republican party and, although not an office seeker, he takes a keen interest in public affairs. His ability as a business man is manifested in the efficient way in which he manages the financial phases of farming and in the care of his stock he follows methods which are based upon known scientific principles. His success is well deserved and he has won both material prosperity and the regard and esteem of his fellowmen.



~ source: History of Delaware County, Iowa and its People, Illustrated, Volume II. The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company, 1914, Chicago. Page 440-444.  Call Number 977.7385 H2m; LDS microfilm #934937.

~transcribed and contributed by Constance Diamond for Delaware County IAGenWeb


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