Biography - Francis Beames

FRANCIS F. BEAMES, residing in township 11, range 5, Johnson County, was born in Whitley County, Ky., February 1, 1835. His father was William Beames, born in the same county, and was a farmer by occupation, as was also his father before him, James Beames, who was probably born in Scotland, and was certainly of Scotch parents. Grandfather Beames was married in Scotland, and he and his wife were among the pioneer settlers of Whitley County, Ky., where they were prosperous people, and well known. They reared a family of eight children, three sons and five daughters, and both died in that county, Mr. Beames at the great age of one hundred and two years, Mrs. Beames a little later, at the age of eighty-five years. William Beames was the third child of this family, and married Miss Martha, a daughter of Frank and Nancy Faulkner, of Tennessee. The parents of our subject came from Kentucky to southern Illinois in the fall of 1852 in regular emigrant style, with their team and wagons. They had three covered wagons and a two-horse buggy. They brought with them their entire family of nine children, five sons and four daughters, of whom our subject is the fourth son and seventh child in order of birth. They first settled in Pope County, where they bought eighty acres of land. Mr. Beames died soon afterward at the age of fifty-three years, near Glendale, Pope County. His widow lived on the eighty-acre farm until her death, in February, 1888, at the age of eighty-two years. Of this large family but three survive, our subject and two of the daughters, who are Melinda, widow of Thomas Williams, a farmer of Johnson County, and Hannah, widow of Joseph Fox, who is residing on her farm in Union Township.
Francis F. Beames was educated in the subscription schools of Kentucky, in a rude log cabin of the times. He attended school a few months each year until he was fourteen, and on attaining his eighteenth year left home and worked at various occupations for some years. He then went to California across the plains, and was a stock-herder there for about three years, at $70 per month. He remained in California about four years, and then returned to Pope County, Ill., where he has been successfully engaged in farming ever since. He was married to Mary M. Dent, of Jackson County, Ala., a daughter of James and Fanny (Lisles) Dent, who came from Alabama to southern Illinois about 1854. Mr. Dent was a volunteer in 1861 in Company H, Thirty-first Illinois Infantry, serving as a private, and was killed May 22, 1862, before Vicksburg. His wife died January 15,1863, leaving three daughters: Mary, wife of Mr. Beames; Elizabeth, wife of Morgan Bryant, a farmer of Hardin County; and Lucinda, wife of Mack Ledbetter, a farmer of Pope County.
Mr. and Mrs. Beames, soon after their marriage, bought eighty acres of timber land for $600, with a small log cabin on it, into which they moved and lived for a year or two. Our subject now owns one hundred and ten acres of land, eighty-five of which are under a high state of cultivation, and are devoted to general farming. He and his wife have lost one infant son and one daughter, and have 'three sons and three daughters living, namely: Joseph, a farmer of Hardin County; William, unmarried and at home; Telford, a young man; Cordelia; Arty, a miss of twelve years; and Lillie, aged eight, all at home. Socially Mr. Beames is an Odd Fellow and a Democrat, and he and his wife are members of the General Baptist Church. The latter belongs to Rebecca Lodge, holding membership with Stonefort Lodge No. 731.

Extracted 15 May 2002 by Rick Girtman from 1893 Biographical Review of Johnson, Massac, Pope, and Hardin Counties, Illinois, pages 388-389

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