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Mystery Monday: Who Is ‘A. Beerbower’ in the Frances “Fannie” Isabella (Brown) Chapman Photo Collection?

A. Beerbower, Iowa City, Iowa photographer.
A. Beerbower, Iowa City, Iowa photographer. (Click to enlarge.)

Beerbower Family, Helbling Family (Click for Family Tree)

A kind lady who owns this photo contacted us after finding the blog’s stories about other Beerbowers. Unfortunately, we don’t know exactly who this “A. Beerbower” is. We do have a few possibilities, and knowing the photographer and being able to determine approximately when he was in business and where can help us pinpoint who it might be. Thankfully, we have a scan of the reverse of the picture, and it includes the photographer’s name and place of business.

Isaac Augustus Wetherby was a portrait painter in Boston, Massachusetts in 1849, but by 1854 he had taken a photo of the old Iowa Capitol, so most likely the image of A. Beerbower was taken sometime around or after that later date. Further research listed on a walking tour in Iowa City stated that Wetherby had a commercial photography studio from 1854-1874 in Iowa City, so we now have our time frame for the photo.

A. Beerbower, Iowa City, Iowa photographer, reverse.
A. Beerbower, Iowa City, Iowa photographer, reverse.

Iowa City can be a transient place, since it is the home of the University of Iowa. Students from other states attend the university, and people often had their likeness made when they were visiting an area. So we know that just because the photo was taken there does not mean that A. Beerbower actually lived there.

Andrew C. Beerbower is one candidate for consideration as “A. Beerbower.” He was born about 1843 in Ohio (possibly Hardy, Holmes, Ohio) to George Albert Beerbower and Margaret Virginia Wolgamott. George was the son of Caspar J. Beerbower (1782-1851) and Christina (Reiber) Beerbower (1784-1849), as was Eleazer John Beerbower (1815-1882), our direct ancestor.

Andrew’s parents moved the family to Lincoln Twp., Madison County, Iowa, about 1852, when Andrew was about nine. Andrew was 17 when war broke out, and enlisted in Company H, Iowa 23rd Infantry Regiment on 29 Aug 1862. Might this image have been one he had taken for a sweetheart or his parents before he went off to war? Possibly, but often those photos would be in full military uniform. Also, Iowa City was 150 miles from Andrew’s home.

The photo was not taken when he came home, as he did not make it home- he was killed at the Battle of Milliken’s Bend, in Louisiana, on 7 June 1863- his birthday per one account.

Andrew’s brother was Albert A. Beerbower- yet another candidate for the above picture. Albert was also born in Ohio, about 1845 or so. He married his first wife in Montezuma, Powesheik, Iowa. Looking at census records, we find an Albert Beerbower in the 1880 US Federal Census- in Iowa City! He was 35 that year though, so could this be his picture? (Have not yet found him in the 1870 census.)

At first glance, one last candidate is Albert W. Beerbower, born September 1888 in Iowa to Orange J. Beerbower and Jennie B. Beerbower. When one reads back that our photographer was only in practice from 1854-1874, we see that we can eliminate this particular Beerbower.

There were a lot of Beerbowers in Madison County, Iowa around these years, so there may be others, or the man in the picture could have been from another state entirely. Right now though, my wager is on Albert A. Beerbower being the proper identification of this photo- if he was found in the 1870 census in the same place, it would be a very plausible conclusion, and age 25 may be closer to his actual age when the portrait was taken.

The only way we will know the name of this young man for sure is by someone else having the same image and knowing who it is. We hope that one of our readers will be just that person, and contact us!

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. I. A. Wetherby– https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isaac_Augustus_Wetherby
  2. “Old Capitol” in Iowa, 1854 by I.A. Wetherby- Isaac A. Wetherby image of Old Capitol at the time of the 1854 Johnson County fair. The Capitol was in Iowa City, Johnson Co., Iowa until 1857 when it moved to Des Moines. https://secure.flickr.com/photos/shsi-library/5330254063/in/photostream/
  3. Wetherby Cottage– http://eventful.com/iowacity/events/photography-walking-tour-iowa-city-/E0-001-011629261-7
  4. History of Madison County, Iowa, and Its People, Volume 1. Herman A. Mueller, editor,  S. J. Clarke publishing Company, 1915, page 298. http://files.usgwarchives.net/ia/madison/bios/madbioa-c.txt

 

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We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2015 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted.
 
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Funeral Friday: Charles Francis Marion Underwood

Charles Francis Marion Underwood - Headstone, Glen Ellen, Missouri
Soldier’s Memorial, including Charles Francis Marion Underwood, Glenallen, Missouri (Click to enlarge.)

Whitener Family, Underwood Family (Click for Family Tree)

Private Charles Francis Marion Underwood of the United States Army- Infantry died of pneumonia technically, made worse by the Spanish influenza he contracted after entering the US Army. He died in the Fort Brady, Michigan, Post Hospital.

Death certificate of Charles F. M. Underwood, Chippewa County, Michigan
Death certificate of Charles F. M. Underwood, Chippewa County, Michigan. (Click to enlarge.)

According to the death certificate, Charley had pneumonia for 7 days, and the flu for 6, though it may have been the other way around. The doctor also notes he attended Charley for 12 days, so there are some problems with accuracy on the death certificate. With the large number of deaths and ill soldiers due to the Spanish influenza, however, some errors are understandable.

The death certificate also has his birth year and age wrong- he was actually born on 19 May 1888, not 1898, so was 30 years old at his death, not 20.

Charley’s body was removed the next day to Bollinger, Missouri, where he was buried at Old Trace Creek Cemetery, Glenallen, Bollinger County, Missouri.

Screen Shot 2016-09-05 at 12.53.19 PM

The base of the stone has such a bittersweet inscription.

Charles Francis Marion Underwood- headstone in Old Trace Creek Cemetery, Glenallen, Bollinger, Missouri- closeup of base. Family photo.
Charles Francis Marion Underwood- headstone in Old Trace Creek Cemetery, Glenallen, Bollinger, Missouri- closeup of base. Family photo.

Transcription:

“He left his home in perfect health. He looked so young and brave.

We little thought that soon he’d be laid in a soldier’s grave.”

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos and ephemera.

 

Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images. Click to enlarge images.

We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

Wordless Wednesday: Charles Francis Marion Underwood

Certificate from France received by Elizabeth Adeline (Rickman) Underwood honoring her son Charles F. M. Underwood for his service and death in World War I. (Click to enlarge.)
Certificate from France received by Elizabeth Adeline (Rickman) Underwood honoring her son Charles F. M. Underwood for his service and death in World War I. (Click to enlarge.)

Whitener Family, Underwood Family (Click for Family Tree)

Translation (approximate):

“Mort pour la liberte pendant la grande guerre hommage de la France” is:

"died for freedom during the Great War- tribute of France"

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos and ephemera.

 

Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images. Click to enlarge images.

We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.

Military Monday: Charles Francis Marion Underwood

Charles Francis Underwood in 1918.
Charles Francis Underwood in 1918.

Whitener Family, Underwood Family (Click for Family Tree)

On this Labor Day, it is fitting to mention one of the most important labors in our country- that of protecting our country via service in the military. Whether it was in the local militia to protect a town, the National Guard protecting our cities and states, or our national Army/Navy/Air Force/Marines, the men and women who serve protect our valuable freedoms 24/7/365. We do not have the words in our language- or any language!- to thank them enough for their sacrifice.

Charles Francis Underwood was one of those who left home to fight in World War I. He was the son of Joseph Abner Underwood (1847-1930) and Elizabeth Adeline (Rickman) Underwood (1855-1936), and probably born in Crooked Creek, Bollinger, Missouri. We told a bit about the Charles and the family in an earlier post, “Sibling Saturday: The Underwood Family in 1904.”

Charles registered for the draft, as required, at age 29 on 5 June 1917.

5 June 1917 draft registration of Charles F.M. Underwood, front of card.
5 June 1917 draft registration of Charles F.M. Underwood, front of card. (Click to enlarge.)

(Love that he used “Charley” instead of “Charles” as part of his very long name.)

5 June 1917 draft registration of Charles F.M. Underwood, reverse of card.
5 June 1917 draft registration of Charles F.M. Underwood, reverse of card. (Click to enlarge.)

Charley was 6’1″ tall, medium build, and had gray eyes and dark hair. Despite him working as a farmer, which he probably also did as a child, and a “gigman” in a lead mine- both dangerous occupations- he listed no disabilities. He was unmarried.

Charley went back to work on his farm after registering for the draft, but he and his family likely paid close attention to the news of how World War I was proceeding. Just a week or so after Charley’s 30th birthday, his life changed forever.

Charley was not in the first groups of men drafted, as he was a bit older, but he did receive the following notice dated 20 May 1918.

1918- Order of Induction - Charles Francis Underwood
1918- Order of Induction – Charles Francis Underwood. (Click to enlarge.)

Charley was to report just one week later, at 3pm on 27 May 1918, to the Marble Hill Missouri Draft Board for induction into the United States Army. He was going off to fight in “the present emergency,” or World War I.

We have been unable to determine if Charley ever made it overseas. He may not have, as he contracted the terrible Spanish influenza which killed more of our soldiers and young people around the world than the war itself. Boot camps and training areas would allow fast spread of the very contagious disease. If Charley had contracted it overseas, he would likely have died there, it seems, rather than be transported to Sault Sainte Marie, Chippewa, Michigan, where he died of the flu on 22 October 1918. (More research needed here.)

So thank you, Charley, and all the other family members who have served our country and protected our freedoms, and especially those who lost their lives in its defense. (Thank you to those who are not family members, too!) On this Labor Day we honor your work and your sacrifice, as we should every other day that we are privileged to live in this great country.

 

Notes, Sources, and References: 

  1. Family treasure chest of photos and memorabilia.
  2. “Sibling Saturday: The Underwood Family in 1904”– http://heritageramblings.net/2015/05/30/sibling-saturday-the-underwood-family-in-1904/
    In this older article, we stated that Charley had enlisted, but as new documents have come to light, we now know he was actually drafted.
  3. “Armistice Day- Ethel Underwood Whitener Remembers”–http://heritageramblings.net/2013/11/12/whitener_armisticeday/
  4. “Friday’s Faces of the Past: Elizabeth Adline Rickman Underwood”–http://heritageramblings.net/2015/05/29/fridays-faces-of-the-past-elizabeth-adline-rickman-underwood/
  5. A true description of a “gigman” in a mine has been challenging to find, but they often were at the ‘pithead’ or near the main mining section, and apparently had some authority and responsibility for safety as well as probably making sure the work was proceeding properly.

 

Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images. Click to enlarge images.

We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post (see form below), and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.
 

Original content copyright 2013-2016 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

Family history is meant to be shared, but the original content of this site may NOT be used for any commercial purposes unless explicit written permission is received from both the blog owner and author. Blogs or websites with ads and/or any income-generating components are included under “commercial purposes,” as are the large genealogy database websites. Sites that republish original HeritageRamblings.net content as their own are in violation of copyright as well, and use of full content is not permitted. 
Descendants and researchers MAY download images and posts to share with their families, and use the information on their family trees or in family history books with a small number of reprints. Please make sure to credit and cite the information properly.
 Please contact us if you have any questions about copyright or use of our blog material.