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Robert Beller


Posted By: Robert Woods (email)
Date: 10/19/2023 at 13:03:25

Robert Beller was born on May 10th, 1807 to Elisha and Rachel (Harrison) Beller in Grayson County, Va. He father moved the family to Ohio On July 20, 1826, Robert married Rachel Mason in Highland County, Ohio. He was 19 and she was a couple of years older at 21. The family would have 11 children together. Elijah born in 1829, Mary born in 1832, David born in 1834, Anna born in 1836, Branson born in 1838, Sarah born in 1840, Amanda was born in 1842, Elias was born in 1845, Phillip in 1847, William in 1849. Alebitine, was born in 1854. She doesn't appear in the 1860 Census but there are no records of her death.

In 1849 Robert moved his familt to Peoria, illinois where he farmed for 7 years.

In 1855 Robert obtained 2 land grants. One for 80 acres and the other for 160 acres in Benton County, Iowa. The land was In the North East quarter of section 19 outside of Eden township.

Robert would move his family onto the property in 1856. Elijah would also move his young family to Benton County. On March 12th, 1857 Robert's 2nd son, David would marry Rachel Mason. This couple would have 8 Children together but only 4 would live to be adults!

In the US Census of 1860, Robert and Rachel are still farming, Their oldest daughter Mary Catherine has moved out of the house. Their two oldest sons, Elijah and David are operating farms nearby. The rest of the kids are still living at home. Robert's farm consisted of 220 acres with only 20 being “unimproved” His oldest son, Elijah, had a 53 acre farm with 13 acres “unimproved”. David Bellers farm was 73 acres with only 3 acres “unimproved”. Branson married Margaret Jane Douthitt on November 21, 1860. They would have 7 children together but only 3 would live past the age of 20.

On February 4th, 1861, the US Civil war begins. The Beller family would do their part. Branson would enlist on August 9th, 1862 and Elijah would enlist on December 25th, 1863. Both served in Company A of the 24th Iowa Infantry. Branson was wounded 3 times. The 1st time at Champion Hills, Mississippi. The 2nd time at the battle of Winchester, Virginia and at Cedar Creek, Virginia. He was captured once at Opelousas, LA. He was released in a prisoner exchange. Elijah was wounded at Red River, LA on May 5th, 1864. He never fully recovered from his wounds. Both were discharged in Savannah, GA on July 31, 1865.

Despite the war going on, farming still had to be done and weddings still happened.

Their 2nd daughter, Anna, married David Callaghan on October 29, 1862. David was 50 and Anna was only 26. This was David's 2nd marriage. He 1st wife died in 1855. The couple would have 5 Children together.

The 3rd daughter, Margaret, married Ephriam Doan on July 4, 1864. They would have 6 children together. 2 would die in infancy. Ephriam was a farmer in the Big Grove township.

The 4th daughter, Amanda, married John Calvin Irwin on February 22, 1865. John had served in the civil war in “D” company of the 9th Iowa infantry. He enlisted as a private on August 16th 1861 and was discharged on September 6th 1864 as a 2nd Sargent. John was a farmer. The couple would have 7 children together.

The 4th son of Robert and Rachel, Elias, married Samantha Snyder on June 27th, 1866. The couple would have 5 children together.

The 6th son of Robert and Rachel, William, marries Mary Fennimore on Mar 11, 1868. The couple would have 5 children together. She would die young (35 years of age) on August 2, 1887, in Ponca, Nebraska. William would remarry on August 29, 1888, to Mary Alice Irwin. They would have 2 children together.

The 5th son of Robert and Rachel, Phillip, married Hanna Amelia Irwin on December 31, 1868. The couple would have 9 children together.

By 1870 Robert and Rachel only had one child living at home with them. William and his new wife and a granddaughter. Robert's farm had shrunk to just 110 acres. His son Phillip now had a 90 acre farm next to his fathers farm. Elijah's farm had grown to 160 acres and David's farm had grown to 280 acres.

In 1870 restlessness had developed in family of Robert and Rachel. Branson Harvey was the 1st to move around 1870. He moved his young family to Ponca, Nebraska. Elijah put his farm up for sale in 1871 preparing to move his family to Ponca. Phillip also moved his family to Ponca in 1872. Elias moved his family to Kansas in 1875. William was the last to move. In 1878, he moved his family to Nebraska.

On May 22, 1873, Rachel Mason Beller would pass away leaving Robert with a big whole in his life. In 1878 Robert moved to Ponca, Nebraska to farm with his sons who lived there. In 1880, he is living on his son Elijah's farm he is 73 years old. That would leave David's family to carry on the Beller name in Benton County. On September 4th 1882, Robert Beller would die in his sons house in Ponca Nebraska. His body was brought back to Eden and is buried next to his wife.


Benton Biographies maintained by John Shuck.
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