Muscatine County Iowa

Here is what the abbreviations in the bios stand for: far: farm; Co.: company or county; dir: dealer; IVA: Iowa Volunteer Artillery; IVC: Iowa Volunteer Cavalry; IVI: Iowa Volunteer Infantry; P.O.: Post Office; S. or Sec.: section; and st.: street.

Source: History of Muscatine County Iowa, Biographical Section, 1879, page 594

BENJAMIN A. BEACH, Postmaster of Muscatine, ex-Colonel of the 11th I.V.I., was born in Hamilton, Butler Co., Ohio, on the 20th of January, 1827, and is the son of John and Rosanna (Wilson) Beach, the former a native of New Jersey, and the latter of Pennsylvania. At the age of 13 years, he was apprenticed to a tinsmith in Richmond, Ind., to learn the trade of his master, at which he continued three years. At the outbreak of the Mexican war, he ran away from home and enlisted as a soldier in the 1st O.V., Col. A.M. Mitchell commanding, and remained in the service some sixteen months; he served through all the marches and campaigns of that struggle, fought at Monterey and in other engagements, and was honorably discharged at the close of the war. In 1850, he moved to Muscatine, Iowa, and opened a store; he continued in business until the breaking-out of the war, and on the 17th of April, 1861, he enlisted in Co. A, 1st Regiment, I. V. I.; and was elected First Lieutenant; he was in the battle of Wilson's Creek, Mo., where Gen. Lyon was killed; on the 17th of October, 1861, he entered the service for three years, and was commissioned Captain of Co. H., 11th Regiment I. V. I.; in the battle of Shiloh he lost thirty men of his company, and took part in the campaign against Corinth; in the battle of Iuka, and in the second battle of Corinth, where his regiment lost heavily; he participated in the march to the sea, and through the Carolinas, and was present at the surrender of the rebel Gen. Joe Johnston; at the battle of Atlanta, Maj. Foster, of the 11th Iowa, was killed in the same engagement in which Gen. McPherson was killed; July 22, 1864, Capt. Beach was elected Major of the regiment; before his commission as Major was received; Col. Abercrombie resigned his commission and Maj. Beach was elected Colonel of the regiment and retained that position until the arrival of the army in Washington, when he was placed in command of and Iowa Brigade, consisting of the 11th, 13th, 15th and 16th regiments, and was offered a brevet to his rank, which, however, he declined, the war having ended, the compliment was an empty one; during his long and active military career, except thirty days' leave of absence after the return from the Louisiana campaign, he was never a day off duty by sickness, never was wounded, captured, or absent on leave; he was mustered out of the service at Louisville, Ky., July 19, 1865; he returned to Muscatine, and, with William T. Butts, engaged in the grocery business; he received the appointment of Postmaster of Muscatine and was confirmed in January, 1878. He is a consistent member of the Presbyterian Church, and a generous contributor to all charitable institutions; he is a member of the Masonic fraternity and is a Knight Templar. Col. Beach has been twice married--his first wife was Miss Mary R. Stevenson of Muscatine; married Nov. 29, 1854; she died March 11, 1857; he married his present wife, Miss Josephine Mason, of Muscatine, Jan. 31, 1866; they have two sons--George and Fred.

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