IAGenWeb Project

Shelby County


1889 Bio Index


Joseph F. BEH, the subject of this sketch, is one of the leading merchants of Harlan. He has been interested in the welfare of Shelby County since 1882, when his residence here began. He is a native of Iowa, born in Scott County, January 11, 1859; he is a son of F. X. and Caroline (Heckel) Beh, natives of Baden, Germany, who emigrated to the United States in 1852; they first settled in Detroit, Michigan, where Mr. Beh followed the trade of stone-cutting, which he had learned in the old country. They resided in Michigan three years, and in 1855 came to Scott County, Iowa, and settled in Buffalo, where Mr. Beh opened a stone quarry and lime-kiln; he followed this occupation for about twelve years, and then moved on a farm in the same county, where he still resides.

Mr. and Mrs. Beh are the parents of nine children, eight of whom still survive. Joseph F. Beh is the second son and third child; from the time he was twelve years old until he was twenty-one he lived on a farm; his education was obtained in the common schools and in St. Francis' College, Quincy, Ill. In 1882 he came to Harlan and bought a half interest in his present store; the firm name was then Haak & Beh; this partnership continued for two years, when Mr. Beh purchased his partner's interest, and has since conducted the business alone. He carries the largest stock of goods in Harlan and occupies two rooms.

Mr. Beh was married October 10, 1882, to Miss Louisa D. Dietz, a native of Scott County, and a daughter of Hon. Phillip and Dora (Reison) Dietz, who care from Germany in 1853; they located in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, where they lived for two years, and in 1855 they came to Walcott, Scott County, Iowa, where they still reside. Mr. Dietz is a member of the firm of Stockdale & Dietz, who are extensively engaged in grain and stock dealing. Mr. Dietz represented Scott County in the twenty-first and twenty-second general assemblies. Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Beh are the parents of two children -- Dora F. and Phillip C. Mr. Beh is a member of the Roman Catholic church.

Source: 1889 Biographical History of Shelby County, Iowa, pp. 578, 579. Transcribed and submitted by Craig and Nancy Poole - cpoole@unmc.edu