COL. GEORGE BEELER
By Nina Bigsby
Descendant of his daughter Elizabeth

COL. GEORGE BEELER
     born ca 1755-56 in Frederick County, VA, s/o of Frederick Beeler and Judy__.
     died May 1798 in Ohio County, VA (now Marshall Co., WVA).
     married 1) Elizabeth Vestal, eighth month, third day, 1772 (Quaker calendar).
     married 2) Jane Helm Larue.

ELIZABETH VESTAL
     born ca 1754 in Frederick County, VA, d/o John Vestal and Ann Potts.
     died 1779 - 1784 In Ohio County, VA (now Marshall Co. WVA).

JANE HELM LARUE
     born 2 Jan 1759 in Frederick County, VA, a daughter of Thomas Helm and Margaret Neill.
     died 19 Dec 1837, age 82, at Decatur, Marion County, Indiana.

A few miles out of Cameron in West Virginia on route 250 going towards Moundsville there stands a highway marker that reads:

FORT BEELER
Site of Indian fort, built in
1779 on land of George Beeler.
In 1782, an attack of Mohawk
and Shawnee Indians was
repulsed by its defenders,
among whom were Martin
and Lewis Wetzel, the celebrated
scouts and Indian fighters.

Across the road stands the Beeler Station Christian Church, founded in 1826. There is a cemetery in the churchyard with many older type markers. You would think that you would find Beelers buried here, but that didn’t happen. George and Elizabeth Beeler were buried in the Old Beeler Station Cemetery about a mile west on Route 34.2,6 Then about 1820 the sons of George began following the "go west" movement, leaving no one by the name of Beeler in the area. 19, 20, 21

George Beeler evidently came to the Pan Handle of West Virginia about 1779, the time the fort was erected.30 He amassed an estate of about 10,000 acres, which included the present town of Cameron and a sizable chunk of Marshall County. He also left a trail of records that revealed an adventurous life.26, 27, 28

ca 1755. A guess is that George Beeler was born about 1755-57. He was a minor (under 16) when his father died in 1764. Carolyn Pappas suggests that George Beeler was born about 1756. She based this date on a record found in Frederick Co, VA order book 4, p. 662, dated 7 Aug 1770: “George Beeler makes choice of Benjamin Rankin as guardian”. If George chose a guardian in 1770 he would have been a minor that year. That would mean he was about 16 when he married Elizabeth in 1772.5.3, 14

1764 May 1. The will of Frederick Beeler, George’s father, was proved in the Frederick County Court of Virginia. He willed to his wife Judy 1/3 of his estate and after her death it was to be equally divided among his children. Four sons were mentioned: George, Charles, Joseph and Frederick, with George being the oldest. The will read: I give to my two oldest sons George Beeler and Charles Beeler all that tract of Land whereon I now live to be equally divided between them … when George comes to age of twenty one years they paying to my other (two) sons Joseph and Frederick their equal part of what the Land shall be valued to be worth.5.3

1772 eight month third day (Quaker calendar) George Beeler and Elizabeth Vestal were married. During this time there were several entries in the records of the Hopewell Monthly Meeting in Frederick Co. concerning the Vestals and this marriage.

6-1-1772. John Vestal hath consented to his daughters marriage out and made her a wedding at his house. James Steer and Richard Ridgway Jr. to visit him.
8-3-1772. John Vestal and wife Ann disowned. Richard Ridgway and Abel Walker to read.
9-7-1772. John Vestal reported inclined to appeal.
2-1-1773. John Vestal & wife’s testimony returned. recorded. signed by Benj. Thombrugh & Sarah Pickering.
2-1-1773. Elizabeth Bealor, formerly Vestal, daughter of John and Ann Vestal, disowned 8-3-1772 for marrying by hireling to one not a member.10

Quakers, along with everyone else in the American Colonies and England, did not begin using the Gregorian calendar until 1752. In the Julian calendar, which was in use until that time, the year began on March 25th. March was the first month and February the 12th month. The Quakers recorded events using the number of the day, month and year. In other words, in the date 2nd month, 5th day, 1710, the month would be April. Beginning in 1752 the 2nd month would be February. Since the incidents in this paper occurred after 1752, it would seem that the Quakers would have used the present day calendar.18

1778 June 16. George Beeler was appointed constable in Berkeley County and was summoned to appear at the next court to be foreman.1.1, p.23

1779. George Beeler appointed overseer of the mountain road in the boom of Robert Goldbury.1.1, p.364

1779 Sept 10. George Beeler, his wife Elizabeth, and Charles Beeler, sold 232 acres on Evitts Run where “George Beelor now lives”. This was part of a tract of land purchased by his grandfather, Christopher Beeler from Samuel Walker on 31 August 1752. Christopher, in turn, sold it to his son, Frederick Beeler, in 1760. The property was located in that part of Frederick County, VA, that became Berkeley County in 1772 and Jefferson County in 1801. This was probably the land that was sold to his uncle Benjamin Beeler.13

1779. With the sale of the property in Berkeley County, this might have been the time that George Beeler moved to Ohio County, VA, later Marshall County, WVA.

1779-1784. Sometime during this time period Elizabeth Vestal died. Lillian Beeler DeWitt, a descendant of Frederick Beeler, in her DAR application gave the date of Elizabeth’s death as 25 Nov 1779, which is the date some have given for the birth of Elizabeth (Beeler) Bane. If this date were correct then it would appear that Elizabeth died in childbirth. However, Naomi Lowe, from the Marshall County Historical Society in West Virginia felt this death date was premature. She said that most people place her children as being: Nancy (1775), Frederick (1778), Elizabeth (1779), Margaret (1781) and perhaps Mary. We should keep in mind, however, that on 7 Oct 1800 guardianship bonds were issued in the court in Ohio County for the minor children of George Beeler. Seven children were listed as being minors: Fanny, Mary, Lucretia, George, Joseph, Thomas, and Charles. These children would have been under 16 years of age and, therefore, born after 1784. Nancy, Frederick, Elizabeth and Margaret were not minors. 4,7,11

George Beeler then married Jane Helm Larue. In Lillian Beeler DeWitt’s application for the DAR, the organization questioned the Larue, saying it had not been proven. Nevertheless, this is the name that has been passed down in at least three branches of the family - that of Elizabeth (Beeler) Bane, of Frederick, and of Joseph. Jane went west to Indiana with her sons about 1820. She died in 1837 and was buried on the farm of her youngest son, Joseph. 4,20

West Virginia histories give information about the settlement of the northwest part of the state. The Treaty of Fort Stanwix 1768 between the Indians and the British designated the Ohio River as the boundary line between the Indians and the white settlement. "Following the opening of the western land for settlement ..... settlers were streaming over the Alleghenies into the back country of Pennsylvania and Virginia in ever-increasing numbers. By 1770 this fringe of new settlements was extending into the Monogahela and Ohio River territory & flowing down the New & Big Kanawha to the lower Ohio. The permanent settlements, beginning as early as 1754, grew rapidly in the early seventies, and by 1775 the population of these trans-allegheny settlements in Virginia numbered about thirty thousand.

"The great object of all these newcomers was land, which could be acquired by an ambitious settler literally 'for taking it up'. Erecting a cabin and raising a crop entitled him to a settler's right of four hundred acres, with a pre-emption claim to one thousand more which he could secure by a land office warrant. Small holdings to be tilled by the owners, and large holdings, to be held for later sale were eagerly grabbed on the strength of grants, patents, and tomahawk claims, all often overlapping as the result of inaccurate surveys or the disregarding of ownership claims." 25

George Beeler was the first settler in the Webster District of Ohio County, Virginia - now Marshall County, West Virginia.2, page. 225

After 1780 there were numerous surveys carried out for George Beeler along with maps illustrating his claims. 28

Folio 15, #69, 4 Mar 1782, 500 acres on Hardins Creek.
Folio 34, #156, 29 June 1782, 408 acres adjoining the States established line, "beginning East of a Cabbin call'd Retenhouse's Cabbin."
Vol. 1, p. 311, l Apr 1786, 260 acres on an island in the Ohio River opposite a place known as Hollodys Cove.
Vol. 2, p. 117, 11 Nov 1788, 1000 acres on the waters of Grave Creek and Wheeling.
Vol. 2, p. 120, 6 Nov 1788, 1287 acres on Grave Creek.
Vol. 2, p. 125, 15 Sept 1788, 269 acres on Kings Creek.
Vol. 2, p. 511, 11 Nov 1797, 600 acres on Waters of Wheeling.
Vol. 2, p. 512, 11 Nov 1797, 1000 acres on Big Grave Creek.

Sims Index to Land Grants in West Virginia gave a summary of the grants given to George Beeler by Lord Fairfax prior to the creation of the Virginia Land Office. Although this summary included more property than was found in the survey records listed above, there were some pieces of property listed in the survey records that were not included in Sims Index. The two lists overlapped but were not the same.17

1287 acres	Grave Creek		1798      Book 3    page 196
1000 acres	Grave Creek		1798      Book 3    page 197
600  acres	Wheeling Creek          1798      Book 3    page 195
229  acre	Hardins Run		1798      Book 3    page 194
1000 acres	Grave Creek		1798      Book 3    page 158
700  acres	Adj. Ben Wyncoop 	1795      Book 2    page 546
200  acres	Grave Creek		1793      Book 2    page 399
1000 acres	Grave Creek		1793      Book 2    page 398
1000 acres	Fish Creek		1792      Book 2    page 393
1000 acres	Grave Creek		1792      Book 2    page 392
1000 acres	Wheeling Creek          1792      Book 2    page 391
269  acres	Kings Creek		1792      Book 2    page 390
1784 Nov 15. George Beeler was the administrator of the goods and chattels and credits of William Vestal, desc., who was exec. of the last will and testament of John Vestall, desc. who was adm. of the goods and chattels of Thomas Speaker of the County of Berkley, VA. William was George’s brother-in-law and John his father-in-law. 5.2

1785 Nov 3. George Beeler Ex. to Christopher Fry, surrender.5.2

1786 May 10. George Beeler, had a survey done for 1000 acres in Harrison County. This land was located on the west side of the Tygers Valley River.23

1787 April 2. Beeler bought 800 acres of land in Holodys Cove with which he had problems of ownership. In an Ohio County Deed Record of 2 April 1787 he got this sorted out. 26.1 He and his wife Jane than sold this property on 5 Mar 1794.26.2

1795 Mar 24. George Beeler of Ohio County to Peter Crow, 200 acres, part of 1000 acres granted to George Beeler by patent on 5 Nov 1792 - 32 pounds current money of Virginia.

1795 Mar 24. George Beeler and Jane Beeler his wife to John Davis, 100 acres being part of 1000 acres granted by patent on 8 April 1793 - 24 pounds Virginia currency.

1795 Apr 6. George Beeler to Daniel Preston, 269 acres being a tract of land granted by patent on 5 Nov 1792 - 20 pounds.

1795 Dec 23. On this date an act was passed by the Assembly authorizing the construction of a new road to run from Morgantown to the mouth of Grove Creek at Moundsville. George Beeler was one of three men appointed as commissioners to supervise the construction and to see that the road was built. 3

One story about Colonel Beeler and his trouble with the Indians appeared in the HISTORY OF THE PAN-HANDLE OF WEST VIRGINIA12 and was repeated in the HISTORY OF MARSHALL COUNTY, WVA 15. This is the story:

     "When Colonel Beeler emigrated to this section (Cameron) he located a great deal of land, the greater part of which was about the fort. The entire neighborhood where Cameron now stands, and a wide scope of the country extending to the forks of Fish Creek, also was owned by him at that early day. Shortly after his coming to this point, in company with other men, they were permanently located at the fort. A great many Indians from the Shawnee and Mohawk tribes, who were then stationed about Wheeling and the flats of Grave Creek, came to prowl about the fort to annoy Colonel Beeler in every conceivable way they could, and, if possible drive him from the dominions, which they claimed the "Great Spirit" had bequeathed unto them. Beeler's station, at that time, was indeed a situation of sadness. The sun rose in the morning, and as its glittering beams gleamed down upon the earth, through the heavy timbers that then clothed the hills and vales of Virginia, its dawning influence came in contact with a solitary fort, standing in the midst of a desolate wilderness. Evening came, and the inmates of Beeler's fort look with eyes expressive of the saddest reluctance to see the sun sink down in the west. The curtain of darkness is drawn over creation and darkness settles around and envelops the fort. The women and children of this secluded structure shudder with awe to think of the monotony of the night. And truly the nights were terrible. The valley of Grave creek sloped off to the west. The deep, dark valley of Wolf Run stretched far to the north. In the darkness and stillness of the night, birds of "evil omen" flew from one valley to the other, and as they passed over the fort they flapped their wings and uttered their unearthly shrieks. In the deep valleys and ravines, on all sides the howls of the wolf, the fierce shrieks of the panther, and the yells of the wild cat could be distinctly heard. The harsh toned voice of the terrible "Red man" could be heard on every hill-top as they echoed and re-echoed their answers to each other. These were the agencies and elements that surrounded Beeler's Station in the night time during the primeval ages of Virginia.
     "During the summer of 1780, it is said that Colonel Beeler became discouraged, and I presume it was no wonder, for where is the man of this day and date that could have faced what Colonel Beeler did, and live?
     "New obstacles were constantly being conceived and brought into existence day after day to barricade his pathway, to frustrate and hinder him from accomplishing the great designs he had undertaken.
     "His enemies were so numerous, and they were so terribly disfigured with evil design, that the lives of Colonel Beeler and his family were constantly endangered whenever they went outside of the fort. Under these terrible circumstances, for Colonel Beeler to establish a colony in this neighborhood presupposed to him the idea that he must have additional aid.
     "Accordingly, in the dead of winter, 1780, he, accompanied by Tomlinson, of the fort at Moundsville, and Ryerson, of Ryerson's Station, Pa., walked through the deep snow, in the dead of winter, over the mountains of Pennsylvania to the city of Philadelphia He there laid in a complaint to the chief officers of that state regarding his sad situation in the wilds of Virginia. He requested them to send him assistance. They were moved by his story and agreed to furnish the desired aid. So, in the spring of 1781, fifty-three men under the command of Captain Jeremiah Long, arrived at Beeler's Fort. They assumed the name of "six months men" and their duty was to guard the different forts which were then located at different points in this country, and to pilot and protect men who wished to go from one station to another. Braver and nobler men never lived than were these who composed Captain Long's company. They were all in the prime of manhood, except Captain Long, who was a tolerably old man They staid in the wilds of Virginia for a number of years and the greatest respect was manifested toward them by those early settlers whom they then protected And the services which these six months men rendered were the very instrumentalities which enabled these early frontiermen to colonize this neighborhood and bring about settlements of civilized people.
     "During the year 1782, spies were appointed by the different parties throughout this country Thomas Younkins was appointed a spy for Beeler's Station. Martin Wetzel was appointed by the people at Wetzel's Fort to act as a spy in conjunction with the spy at Beeler's Station These two men were not only well acquainted with the Indians and their language, but also understood thoroughly their customs and places of warfare. The energy, bravery and perseverance these two men possessed not only secured for them the position of spies, but won them destinies which will live, as history bears on record the account of great deeds and daring feats performed by the heroes of an early frontier. Their history is one repeated scene of combat, bloodshed, and massacre with the Indians, and that degree of success which attended them on all occasions and under all circumstances, has gone far toward characterizing them as among the bravest and most daring men that ever walked the face of the earth.
     "The duty of Younkins and Wetzel, when acting as spies at Beeler's Station, was to scout through the woods round about the fort, to ascertain, if possible, the exact strength of the Indian forces, and to determine whether they were making any signs indicative of an attack on the fort.
     "The year in which Colonel Beeler died, is not known. The spot of ground that now contains his smouldering ashes is only a few rods distant from where his old fort stood....graves of many others who had undergone the terrible order which surrounded and afflicted the early settlers of this ... distracted neighborhood, can plainly be seen near the fort."

Following is a newspaper article about Fort Beeler from the Sunday News, May 10, 1931. 6

Headline: Two weather-beaten Grave Stones Last Mark of Famous Fort Beeler
Sub headlines: Siege of Old Fort in 1782 was Memorable Event in History of District
Pioneer Outpost Now Beeler’s Station, Town of 40 in Marshall County
Many Indians in District Caused Heinous Hardships for Settlers

     Nestled among high blades of grass in a broad level field, about four miles from Beeler’s Station, Marshall County, lies two weather-beaten stones- the last of famous Fort Beeler, one of the pioneer settlements of the district.
     Crudely cut and unnoticed by a busy world, these two stones mark the last resting places of a great pioneer and his wife - Colonel George Beeler and the woman who shared hardships with him to further the outpost of civilization decades before there was a West Virginia.
     In this section which once echoed with wild, hideous battle cries of Indians, peace and tranquility now reign. Surrounding the dust of Col. Beeler and his wife, lies buried many redskins who once thirsted for white man’s blood, but whose thirst turned to a bloody horror and death.

TIMES CHANGED

     Today, Beeler’s Station still stands. But it is a different Beeler’s Station, from the crude little fort which Indians tried stubbornly but vainly to capture. Although Beeler’s Station is no longer a log fort, neither is it an over-populated city. At the present time, more than 150 years later, the little town has a population of about 40.
     But today the surroundings are different. No longer must men move cautiously through heavily wooded country fearing the tomahawk, no longer must women and children lie in fear within heavily guarded forts.
     Now, where small paths once winded their way, are beautiful, modern highways; swift, sturdy horses have been replaced by swifter automobiles; where hideous howls of Indians once threw terror into the hearts of white people, the peaceful chirp of the cricket or the croak of the frog now breaks the still night - no longer is there the fear of the dreaded tomahawk.

MEMORY LINGERS

     But, despite all these changes, memory of old Fort Beeler still live - not through actual sight, but through description. Year after year, generation after generation the story of the little settlement has been told and retold.
     When Col. Beeler immigrated to this section of the country, he located on a large tract of land which extended between what is now Cameron and Fish Creek. He located his fort in the center of a farm now owned by C.T. Winters. It is in this land that Colonel and Mrs. Beeler are buried.
     The fort which Col. Beeler built was a crude affair. It consisted of cabins, blockhouses, and stockades, and was of the early type, built without use of nails or spikes.
     Not only did the fort provide a place of defense, but it was used as a residence for many families. Portholes were placed in the walls of the fort to shoot from in time of an Indian attack. The outside walls were ..... (page cut off)
     At that time, about 1780, a great many Shawnee and Mohawk Indians located around Wheeling and the flats of Grave Creek, now Moundsville, under Chief Cornplanter, Cornstalk, and Bald Eagle.
     Numerous attacks were made on the fort by these Indians, and while they did not succeed in taking the fort, they did inflict many fatalities on the little band of settlers. To this day, grim stories of terrible death are told. The tale is related of a mother seeing a warrior take her three year old child and dash its brains out against a tree, while another child was laid across a log and chopped in halves.
     Soon Colonel Beeler became discouraged over the numerous attacks made by the redskins. At last, it became apparent that they must have aid or perish, so in the dead of winter, 1780, Col. Beeler, a settler named Tomilinson from the fort at Moundsville, Martin Wetzel, and Rogerson from Ryerson Station, PA., left for Philadelphia. It was necessary to walk through deep snow and over mountains to the Quaker City.
     There, the sad story of the situation in the wilds of Virginia was related. The people were moved by the sufferings, and in 1781 they sent 50 men, under Captain Jeremiah Long, to Fort Beeler.

WETZEL BROTHERS FIGURE

     The Wetzel brothers, famous in history for fighting Indians, figured prominently in early days of Fort Beeler. In1782, Martin Wetzel and Thomas Youkins were appointed spies for Beeler’s Station. They understood both language and habits of the Indians, and it was their duty to scout the woods and ascertain strength of the redmen and any immediate signs of warfare.
     One day while they were scouting, they met Lewis Wetzel, Martin’s brother. As an Indian attack on the fort was expected that evening, Lewis returned with them.
     The next evening weird howls from the surrounding hills marked the coming attack. Men stood taut at the portholes, while women and children worked frantically preparing ammunition.
     In the twilight hours, two chiefs rode toward the fort, stopped their horses, and dismounted. Lewis Wetzel’s gun rang out, and one of the chiefs fell dead. It was this shot that was to make a memorable event in history.

BEGIN LONG SIEGE

     Thrown into a maddened rage by the death of their leader, the Indians began a night long siege. The next morning, the redmen continued their fight. They attempted to dig in under the fort, in an endeavor to get inside and set it on fire.
     The Wetzel brothers watched the dirt fall slowly away, and soon, the first Indian thrust his head through. No sooner had he appeared, than he was tomahawked by Martin Wetzel, dragged in and thrown to one side. A second began to enter and met the same fate. This continued until six had been killed.
     Growing suspicious, the seventh moved cautiously, and escaped with a badly wounded shoulder. Failing in all their attempts to take the fort the Indians got a hollow log and proceeded to make a cannon of it. They filled it with powder and bale and placed it close to the fort, determined to knock a hole in the stockade. The Indians gathered about the cannon. When it went off, several Indians were killed and wounded, but no impression was made on Fort Beeler.

TRICK INDIANS

     The garrison defending the fort was small compared to the Indian forces. Under the direction of the Wetzel brothers, the women made dummies which they stood at various portholes. This not only attracted the Indians fire, but made them think large numbers were in the fort.
     After a day and night’s siege, they gave up this attack and retreated. This marked the last attack on Fort Beeler. The exact date of the death of Colonel and Mrs. Beeler is not known, but their remains rest beneath the same ground on which they fought not only for their lives, but for civilization.6

1798 May. A record of the death of George Beeler appeared in the Disposition of Morgan Jones who was at the funeral late in May of 1798. Morgan Jones was the father-in-law of Frederick Beeler, son of George and Elizabeth Vestal The disposition noted that he left Nancy, Elizabeth, Frederick, Margaret, Thomas, Charles, Frances, Mary, Lucretia, George, and Joseph, that Joseph was an infant at the breast, and Nancy intermarried with Jesse Bane, Elizabeth with Mordecai Bane, Margaret with Joseph Hollingsworth, Mary with Sam’l Manning,” 14

1798 July 2. An appraisal of the estate of George Beeler was presented to the District Court.

1800 Oct 7. Ohio County Guardianship bonds were issued in the court for the minor children of George Beeler. Jacob Wetzel and William Dumont became the guardians for Fanny Beelor, Mary Beelor, Lucretia Beelor, George Beelor Joseph Beelor, Thomas Beelor and Charles Beelor, all orphans of George Beelor, deceased. 7 Carolyn Pappas also found guardian appointments for Mary, Lucretia, George and Joseph in 1807 in Frederick County, VA with accounts in 1810.14

After this, numerous deeds appeared in the settling of his estate. There were further deeds when some of the heirs sold their part of the estate. The first deed on 4 March 1800 listed the heirs of George Beeler: "Nancy Bean wife of Jesse Bean, Elisabeth Bean wife of Mordecai Bean, Frederick Beelor, Mary Buler, Fanny Buler, Lucretia Buler, Thomas Buler, Charles Buler, George Buler, Margaret Buler and Joseph Buler, heirs at law of George Buler, deceased." 26.4

By 1812 the land was being divided up among the heirs. In 1819 the titles to the land were being proven in the court. Most of the heirs were married by this time and the names of spouses appeared in the records.

CHILDREN OF GEORGE BEELER and ELIZABETH VESTAL:

1. Nancy Beeler, b 18 Aug 1775 in Berkeley County, VA (part of Frederick County before 1772), d 4 Sept 1856, age 81 yrs. 16 days in Marshall County, WVA, m 16 Aug 1798 to Jesse Bane, brother to Mordecai Bane who married her sister Elizabeth, 9 children: Elizabeth, Amy, Absalom, Jesse, Ellis, Nancy, Frederick, George, Nimrod.8, 14, 16

2. Margaret “Peggy” Beeler, b about 1777 in Frederick/Berkeley County, VA, d 8 Jan 1861 in Illinois, m Joseph Hollingsworth, reported to have moved to Shelby, KY: one child Charles, maybe more. 14, 16

3. Frederick Beeler, b 7 Aug 1777-8 in Frederick/Berkeley County, VA, d 19 Sept 1853 in Morgan County, IN, m 21 Sept 1802 Anna Jones, daughter of Morgan Jones, 7 children. In the 1850 census Frederick’s age was 72: daughter, Ruth, Frederick, Ester, daughter, George, Jones Vestal.4, 14,16

4. Elizabeth "Betsy" Beeler, b 25 Nov 1779 in Berkeley County, VA, d 12 July 1839 in Ohio County, now Marshall County WVA; m Mordecai Bane, 7 children: George, Rachel, Mary, Frederick, Jesse, Joseph, Mordecai 14, 16

CHILDREN OF GEORGE BEELER AND JANE HELM:

5. Thomas Beeler, b about 1781 14 or 1783 16 in Berkeley County, VA, d 19 Feb 1830 in Morgan County, IN; m Hannah H. Drybread, 10 children: Israel, Jane, Mary, Charles General Jackson “Jack”, George Washington, Susan, William, Minerva, Boliver, Frances.16

6. Charles Beeler, b 1785 in Berkeley County, VA, d 11 Mar 1862 (tombstone), age 77, Rochester Township, Andrew County, Missouri; m 1) Martha _?_, 9 children, George W., John R., Jane T., Noah H., Lucinda, Sinia, Eleanor, Sara, Greenfield F.; m 2) Martha Lee, 2 children, Charles Noble, Jacob Franklin, m 3) Martha Arbgass.16

“Charles Beeler, born in Ohio County, Virginia (now West Virginia) came to Morgan County, Indiana, in 1820 and to Decatur Township in 1822, and settled on the SE 1/4 Sec 7, twp 14, range 2, it being land which he bought at the government land sales at Brookville. He sold his property in Decatur and removed in 1831 to Shelby Co., Illinois. Afterwards he moved to the state of Missouri thence to California, and from there back to Missouri and died near St. Joseph in that state about the year 1867, at the age of 84 years.” (Note: This is different from the information on his tombstone.) 19

7. Fanny Beeler, b ca 1785, d 1819.14,16

8. Lucretia Helm Beeler, b 25 Jan 1791 in Ohio County, VA, d 8 April 1847 in Truro Twp, Franklin County, Ohio, m Jonathan McCombs, 11 children: George, Evelyn, Elizabeth, Lavinia, Sarah, William Helm, Rebecca , John Jay, Ezra, Margaret, Jonathan. 14. 16

9. Mary Jane "Polly" Beeler, b 1792 in Ohio County, VA, d 1 May 1860 in Marshall County, WV, m Samuel Manning, 7 children: Lydia, Wilfred, Benjamin, Lavina, Lucretia, George Beeler, Millison Jane 16 (information from a direct descendant)

10. George Helm Beeler, b 15 Mar 1796 in Ohio County, VA, d 20 July 1861 in Dallas, TX, m Sarah Cutler, 5 children: Zariah, George, Niles, Sarah, Franklin.16

11. Joseph Beeler, b 4 April 1798 in Ohio County, VA, d 12 July 1851 in Marion County, IN, m Hannah Matthews, 12 children: Thomas, Fielding, Albert, Oliver, Emily, Frances Elizabeth, Milton, Melissa, Newton, Louisa, George Mathews, Harriet.14, 16

     Harry Stewart New, Postmaster General of the United States, U.S. Senator from Indiana, 1917-1923, and publisher of the INDIANAPOLIS JOURNAL, wrote”..."On my maternal side, my mother's father came to Indiana from Virginia. His name was Joseph Beeler, and the family lived at what was known as Beeler's Station on what is now the West Virginia side of the line, as I understand. Accompanied by two brothers, George and Thomas, he came down the Ohio river in a canoe of their own make, about 1820; left the river near the present cities of Jeffersonville and New Albany, and went on foot to what is now Morgan county. In 1823 he entered a tract of 320 acres directly from the Government; married Hannah Matthews, lived, died and was buried on that farm."20

JOSEPH BEELER, YOUNGEST CHILD OF
GEORGE BEELER AND JANE HELM LARUE

     Joseph Beeler was one of the earliest settlers in Decatur Township, Marion County, Indiana. He was born in April, 1797 (other records indicate 1798) in a blockhouse which was built for defense against Indians in Ohio County, VA, (now Marshall County, WVA). The blockhouse was surrounded by a stockade work which was called “Beeler’s Fort” or “Beeler’s Station”. His father was in command of the defense and also of a company of frontiersmen called “rangers”, whose headquarters were at the stockade.      His father died when he was only six weeks old. He grew up living part of the time in Virginia and part in Washington County, PA. In the summer of 1819 he, with his mother and brother George, descended the Ohio River in a pirogue (a very large dugout canoe) and stopped at a place on the lower river from which, in the fall of the same year, he, with his two brothers and two acquaintances, made an exploratory trip to the wilderness region which became Marion County. Striking the White River at the place where the village of Waverly is located, they traveled northward and halted at a camp which they made on the river bank where Indianapolis is now located. There was not at that time a white man’s cabin or habitation of any kind in the area. He made a thorough examination of this region and being pleased with it, he returned in the spring of 1820 with his mother, his brother G.H. Beeler (afterwards the first clerk of Morgan County), and several others for permanent settlement and located on the west side of the river near the bluffs. At the land sales they bought the tract on which they had settled, but afterwards sold it at an advance of one hundred dollars, which would pay for an additional eighty acres of land in some new location.19


References:

1. Berkeley County, VA. 2.1 County Clerk’s Office, Vol. 3, pgs 23, 364, 1777-1779.Family History Library (FHL) #0831287. 2.2 Deed Book 5, p. 443. 2. Boyd, Peter. HISTORY OF NORTHERN WEST VIRGINIA PANHANDLE, embracing Ohio, Marshall, Brooke and Hancock Counties, Historical Publishing Company. Vol.1, Topeka, Indianapolis, 1927. 3 Core, Earl. WVA Morgans Chapel Misc. Records, 1741-1855, “Chronicles of Core”. 1837. FHL Film #848632, Item 3. 4 DAR #760018 Supplement A761, Lillian Eleanora Beeler DeWitt, descendant of Frederick. 5. Frederick County, VA. 5.1. Deed Book 5, p. 518 5.2. Deed Book 20, p. 368, FHL Film #0031377 5.3. Will Book B, p. 182-184 6 Fort Beeler – Newspaper article in Sunday News, May 10, 1931. 7. Guardian Bonds, Ohio County, WVA Administration Book, 1800. 8. HANDY BOOK FOR GENEALOGISTS, The Everton Publishers, Inc., Logan, UT, 84321. 9. Helms, Samuel K. HELM FAMILY OF VIRGINIA, Vol. 1, p. 95, Baltimore, 1985. 10. Hopewell Monthly Meeting, Frederick Co. VA, Vol. 2. 1759 - 1791, pgs. 104 – 110, FHL Film #0441486. 11. Lowe, Naomi, Marshall County Historical Society, 1310 Sixth St. Moundville, WVA, 26041-1935. 12. Newton, J., G.G. Nichols, A.G. Sprankle. HISTORY OF THE PANHANDLE of WEST VIRGINIA. J.A. Caldwell Publisher, Wheeling WVA, 1879, pgs. 363-364. 13. O’Dell, Cecil. PIONEERS OF OLD FREDERICK COUNTY, VA, Walsworth Publishing Co., Marceline, MO, 1995, p. 224. 14. Pappas, Carolyn H. “Christian Beeler, 1705-1775”, THE VIRGINIA GENEALOGIST, Fall and Winter of 2000 - 2001, VOL. 44, pgs. 24-26. 15. Powell, Scott. HISTORY OF MARSHALL COUNTY, Moundsville, WVA, 1925, pgs. 45-47, 81-82. 16. Beeler, Julie. Data on the children of George Beeler, descendant of Charles. 17. SIMS INDEX TO LAND GRANTS IN WEST VIRGINIA, 1952, Charleston, WVA. Sims State Auditor. 18. Stratton, Eugene. .APPLIED GENEALOGY, Ancestry Inc., 1988, p. 97; Berry, Ellen Thomas and David Allen Berry, OUR QUAKER ANCESTORS- FINDING THEM IN THE QUAKER RECORDS, Chapter VII “Quaker Records and Some Possible Problems”, pgs. 67-68. 19. Sulgrove, B.R. HISTORY OF INDIANAPOLIS AND MARION COUNTY, pgs. 509-511, L.H. Everts & CO. 1884. FHL Film #874053. 20. Virkus, Frederick A. COMPENDIUM OF AMERICAN GENEALOGY, VOL.5, P. 379, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1987. 21. Wayland, John H. A HISTORY OF THE SHENANDOAH VALLEY, VA, Shenandoah Publishing House, Strasburg, VA, 1927, pgs. 587-589. 22. West Virginia, Harrison County, Deeds, Vol. 11, pgs. 11, 126, 127, (1811) - FHL Film #0843826. 23. West Virginia, Harrison County Survey Records Index, Vol. 2, p. 465 (1768) - FHL Film #0846622. 24. West Virginia Historic Commission. WEST VIRGINIA HIGHWAY MARKERS, 1967. 25. WEST VIRGINIAN HISTORY, Published by State Department of Archives and History, Charleston, WVA, 1947-48. 26. West Virginia, Ohio County, Deeds. 26.1 vol. 1, p. 89 - 1787 - FHL Film #0855587. 26.2 vol. 2, p. 453 - 1794 - FHL Film #0855587. 26.3 vol. 3, p. 70, 71 and 130 - 1795 - FHL Film #0855588. 26.4 vol. 4, p. 442, 445, 447, 448 - 1800 - FHL Film #0855588. 26.5 vol. 7, p. 229, 232, 234, 285, 287, 288, 290, 291 - 1812 - FHL Film #855590. 26.6 vol. 9, p. 65, 100, 107, 281 - 1817 and 1818 - FHL Film #0855591. 26.7 vol. 10, p. 1-10, 21-22, 62-72, 116, 126, 129 - 1819 - FHL Film #0855591. 27. West Virginia, Ohio County, Historic Records Survey Box 122, Morgantown, WVA. FHL Film #0250121. 28. West Virginia, Ohio County, Index to Survey Books. 28.1 Vol. 1, p. 311, 1786 - FHL Film #0857516. 28.2 Vol. 2, p. 117, 120, 125, 511, 512, #69 Folio 15, #156 Folio 34, 1788 - FHL Film #0857516. 28.3. Vol. 3, p. 233 - FHL Film #0857517. 29. West Virginia, Ohio County, Settlement of Estates, 1777-1806, pgs. 116, 131 and 208. FHL Film #0857612.

September 2003


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