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Illinois Genealogy Trails

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 Jefferson County Illinois
Biographies of Bean Families

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Adam A. Bean


Adam and Mary Bean

Adam Alexander Bean grew up with the conviction that honest toil was the passport to success and honorable adulthood. He was born December 18. 1896; the son of George W. and Amanda F. Rightnowar Bean, in a log house on his grandfather, Ad Rightnowar's farm in McClellan Township. He attended the Rightnowar School where his parents had also received their elementary education. When his children entered this school, he was elected a member of its Board of Education; serving as President in 1938; Clerk in 1939, and as Director in 1940.
In 1922 he attended the Molar Barher College in St. Louis, Missouri. Upon completion. he and his father, George W., opened a shop in Mt. Vernon. In later years he purchased a shop in Waltonville and combined barbering and farming for a livelihood.
Alex was industrious and steady, enabling him to surge forward in spite of difficulties and discouragements. He knew the task of gathering corn with the shucking peg in snow and freezing weather with a team of unruly horses hitched to a buckboard wagon.
In 1937 Alex purchased a 90 acre tract, later adding to make a 230 acre farm in McClellan Township; located in Sec. 16 and 17. He first married Clara H. Black in 1923. She and infant son, Allen Eugene, died in 1925. On September 22,1926. Alex married Mary Ann Osborn, born April 24,1908 in Bald Hill Township, the daughter of John L. W. and Margaret Keller Osborn of Elk Prairie Township. They have four children who live in Jefferson County today: Betty Elaine, Sylvia Faye, Nada Rosemary, and George Alexander. Mary worked at the Shoe Factory over 25 years and retired in 1973.
Betty Elaine, born June 20,1927, married in 1945 Louis M. Knox, son of George and Elizabeth Bowers Knox of Casner Township. They live in Elk Prairie Township and have three children all married; Judy Ann to Bernard Jackson, have Angela; Louis, Jr. to Melba Roeder, have Matthew and Marcus; and Vicky Lynn to James Michael Campbell. have Michael Alan.
Sylvia Faye, born June 21, 1936, married in 1953 William Shelton, foster son of Gale and Mary Claspell Shelton of Elk Prairie Township. They live at Route 1, Bonnie, and have three children all at home; Michael William, Steven Blake, and Kristina Diane.
Nada Rosemary, born August 12, 1938; married in 1960 James Leslie Faulkner. son of Leslie and Glennes Parrish Faulkner of Mt. Vernon. They have three daughters all at home; Tammy Raeline, Rhonda Ann, and Misty Lynn; and live at the home place next to her mother in McClellan Township on Route 2. Waltonville.
Alex and Mary's desire for a son was fulfilled when their last child on March 1,1941, George Alexander, was born. He married in 1961 Karen Sue Imig, daughter of Nelson Peter and Wilma Place Imig of Peoria. Illinois. They have two sons; Gregory Alan and Anthony Scott. George is employed at General Radiator Division of Chromalloy in Mt. Vernon. They recently built their home on part of Alex's farm, located a quarter mile east of the home place. Alex's wife, Mary, and children still own the farm. Mary is living on the farm at present.
Alex had a wide range of interest. He liked to fish and hunt, being partial to coon hunting. He played the guitar and violin with his brother, Gerald, at many social occasions. Playing music has been a tradition through the years. Alex's father George and grandfather, Peter A., both played the violin.
Alex expressed his faith as a Christian early in life. He was an active believer in the full Gospel and attended the Marcoe Church southwest of Mt. Vernon. He spent most of his life in McClellan Township where he was born. In the early morning hours of March 18, 1958, at age 61, he suddenly departed this life and was buried at Rightnowar Cemetery, located at the North side of his farm. He was one of the trustees of this cemetery.
[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 87 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]



Asbury Bean
Asbury Bean was born in Jefferson Co. 1826, the 10th child of Walter and Elizabeth McGaillard Bean, early settlers in Casner Tsp. They descend from William Bean and Naomi Bates who were born in Scotland, married and had 3 children in Ireland. They sailed to America on the ship "Admiral Hawk" in 1767 and settled on a land grant in So. Carolina in Laurens Co. Later they moved to Old Burke Co. N. Car. (then Dist. 96). One son who came to America with them was William Jr. who first married Celia Wyatt then Ann Scott (dau. of William [l728] and Mary [1733] both born in Scotland).
William Jr. served in the Revolution as a private in the militia, in action at Charlestown, So. Car. in 1779, the year of his son Walter's birth. Wm. Jr. had a sister who married a Storment that came to Jefferson Co. too, probably at the same time that her nephew Walter came.
About 1800, Walter and Elizabeth, his parents, and four brothers left N. Car, The father went to Elkton Ky, and the boys to Franklin Co. Tenn. Walter and Elizabeth had 9 of their 11 children there. In 1825, they left Tenn. with a wagon train, heading to Jefferson Co. Ill. According to family stories, they lost their way in a blinding snow storm in the Mts. of Tenn. Walter, driver of the lead wagon, dropped the reins and let his horses pick their own way. This faithful team led them all through to safety, and out of gratitude were given such special care that they both lived to be 29 years old.
They crossed into Ill. at Shawnee town, Walter came on to Jefferson Co. and settled in Casner Twp. Walter's children were: John who came with them but went back to Arkansas where others of the family had gone from Tenn.: Jennie: Thomas Henry. b. 1811, stayed in Jefferson Co.; King William. b. 1812. stayed here; Peter Michael raised his family here then went to Ark. because of his wife's health: Gency; Russell Loving married Orlena Dare and stayed here; Conner: Asbury (subject of this sketch) married Susan Spearman from Tenn. G. Francis Marion, the youngest, went to Gallatin Co. Ill. Walter, the father married a second time in Jefferson Co. (1838) to Katherine Kimbro. They went to Gallatin Co., and died there.
Asbury and Susan settled in the "Buzzard Roost" area south of what is now Nason, where they were neighbors to the Hester, Hodge, Roberson, and Henderson families. Five of their ten children grew to maturity; Sarah Catherine b. 1846, married Raleigh Hodge and in later life Wm. Thomas Peterson: Nancy Emaline b. 1851 married John Reynolds; Martha E. married Charles Q. Hutson; James Valentine b. 1854 married Harriet Samantha Martin; Susan C. B. 1858 married John Stonewall Hester, but died young.
Asbury was a Sgt. in Co. B. 60th Inf. during the Civil War. He died in 1863 while in the service, and is buried in a national cemetery in Tenn. His brother G. F. M. Bean was a 2nd Lieut. Co. H. 120th 111. Vol. lnf. Following Asbury's death, Susan remarried William Baker of Elk Prairie, and they had Joseph and Alonzo Baker. William had 10 children by his first wife, making a total of 23 children between them. Susan is buried at Abner Cemetery.
[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 87 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]

George W. Bean

George Washington Bean, b. Aug. 14. 1874. McClellan Twp.; was the son of Peter Alexander and Elizabeth J. Laney Bean (see this family). He was 16 months old when his mother died,and 7 years old when his father died. He was ever grateful for the care and guidance given him by cousin, on his maternal side, Retta Smith Howe, with whom he sometimes lived. He received most of his schooling at the one room Rightnowar School in Long Prairie. George advanced steadily, and won recognition for himself in the community. Having been raised in a rural area, he engaged in farming and the business of that time. He operated a steam powered grain separator, threshed grain for his neighbors, and did custom work in his area. George, who was a progressive man, also operated a saw mill at old Rydertown, in the south end of Long Prairie, where huge piles of logs were cut and hauled to the mill to make ties for the booming railroads. Later he moved his young family to Conant, Ill. to continue this business. After a short time, however, he moved back to McClellan Twp. where his children went first to Rightnowar, then to Hickory Hill Schools.
On April 1,1896, he was united in marriage in Jefferson Co. to Amanda Emily Rightnowar, b. Nov. 2, 1878, the daughter of Little Ad and Nancy E. Giles Rightnowar of McClellan Twp. (see this family). Their 5 children were: Adam Alexander. 1896-1958. (see this family) who married in 1926 Mary Ann Osborn, daughter of John L. W. and
Margaret Keller Osborn. and had Betty, Sylvia, Rosemary, and George; Charles Gerald, 1898-1941, married in 1924 Ruby May Hogue, daughter of William H. and Martha Perry Hough, and had Doris. Norma, Wilma, and Gary. Gerald and Ruby are buried at Oakwood Cemetery; Mabel. 1901-1975, married 1st in 1920 Jim Morgan. son of Isaac and Lucy Osborn Morgan. Jim died in 1934. They had Norene, James L., George, and Melvin. Mabel then married Olin Johnson in 1943. She is buried at South Hickory Hill Cemetery; Sadie, b. 1903, married 1st in 1928, Dan Morgan. brother to Mabel's husband Jim, and had Wanda who died in infancy, Donald, and Rosalee. After Dan's death in 1935, Sadie married Cleve Hester, son of James Henry and Victoria Casey Hester, who died in 1956. Sadie then moved from their home in Elk Prairie to Mt. Vernon; Daisy Elizabeth. b. 1905. married Arthur Hogue in 1925, brother to Gerald's wife Ruby. They live in Mt. Vernon and in 1975 celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary.
George W., being a public spirited citizen and an ardent Democrat, took an active part in promoting the advancement and welfare of the community, He was elected Highway Commissioner of McClellan Twp. in 1917, served as Justice of the Peace in 1909, and in 1922, during which time he solemnized many marriages in his community. After living in Long Prairie and in Hickory Hill, he moved to Mt. Vernon, and entered the barber trade. He and his son Alec opened a barber shop on South tenth. He was a barber in the Mt. Vernon area for 30 years. He had a desire to read, and a keen ability to write and recite articles of inspiration. In 1925 he wrote and had published, the words and music of a song about a true but tragic event that occurred in Jefferson County in the 1920's. George and Amanda were members of the Christian Church. Before her death, Nov 14, 1941, she was seriously confined, but continued to be of profound faith and influence. George W.'s efforts are memorials of faith and great confidence. With a heavy heart, he attended the funerals of his wife, and also two sons. He expressed his intense feelings in the words he penned and had inscribed on Amanda's gravestone. "Sweet memories of happy days, we may oft times shed a tear. The morning star so bright and fair, was our sweet mother dear. She passed away and all is dark, how dark no words can tell. The morning star of life is gone, and the evening star as well." George W. lived among his children until he died on Dec. 6,1959, age 85. at his daughter Mabel's home near Mt. Vernon. Amanda and George are buried at Rightnowar Cemetery in McClellan Twp.
[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 88 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]


King William Bean
King William Bean, born 1812 in Tennessee was a descendant of William Bean, born 1730 in Scotland. William's son, William Jr., was born in 1754 in Ireland. Walter Bean, born 1779, son of William Jr. went to Franklin County, Tennessee, where his son, King William Bean was born and when he was 13 years old, his father Walter migrated in a covered wagon caravan about 1825 to Jefferson County, settling as an early pioneer in Casner Township.

As early pioneers were influential in the religious life of the community, religious meetings were conducted by the Methodist at the Bean home in Casner Township. Walter's wife, Elizabeth (McGaillard) Bean, must have died sometime after the birth of their youngest child, General Francis Marion, born 1830 in Jefferson County, for Walter remarried in 1838 Katharine Kimbro here in Jefferson County. Walter and Elizabeth had a child to die in 1833, Gency, age 17 years.

In 1842 Walter and his second wife purchased 13 1/2; acres in the SW SW1/4 of Sec. 31 in Shiloh Township, bordering Casner Township, and sold this same parcel of land on October 30, 1848. This land today is now owned by Wilburn and Ruby Panzier. After 1848 and sometime before 1850 Walter, Katharine and Gen. F. Marion moved to Gallatin County, Illinois where this family maintained a lively interest in religion with Rev. G. F. M. Bean, a minister of the Gospel, establishing several churches in the Ridgway area. However, four of Walter's eleven children, King W., Thomas H. Loving Russel, and Asbury (see family) remained in Jefferson County having descendants living here today. John and Peter M. moved to Arkansas but it was unknown where Conner (born 1824), Gulie (born 1806), and Jennie (born 1809) went. Walter, in his mid-sixties when leaving Jefferson County, spent his declining years in Gallatin County and was buried there.

King William as a young pioneer found Jefferson County a land of opportunity for those with courage and ambition. On
October 15, 1833, he was married in this County to Miss Elizabeth Rightnowar, born 1812 in Hardin County, the daughter of another pioneer family, George and Jerusha (Rose) Rightnowar, early settlers in McClellan Township. They made their home across the road East from the Rightnowar School in McClellan Township, but then it was known only as the Long Prairie community, on an 80 acre tract of land he acquired from the Federal Government in 1842. It seems King William was becoming successful in the farming occupation he had chosen, then only ten years after he and Elizabeth were married, tragedy invaded their home when he died in 1843 at the age of 31, leaving to manage his estate his widow and small children. After King William's death, Elizabeth relinquished her rights as administrator to settle his personal property which was required then of a widow by law, and requested her husband's father, Walter Bean, be appointed. These are a few items King W. had accumulated which were sold at public auction that July 20, 1843: 19 cattle, a cow and calf sold at $7.57 1/2, and two bulls highest one at $2.62 1/2;, 2 yoke of cattle, one at $12.00 and one at $41.00, man's saddle at $3.50, 2 Carey plows, one at $20.75, a falling axe $1.75, 1 rifle gun at $15.121/2 and 14 bee stands, gums and bees, from $1.12 1/2 to $2.31 1/2.

King William and Elizabeth's children were a son, William King (1834-1915) who in 1853 married Clemenza Thompson (1834-1915) and had King William, Cynthia, Sally, Ann, Martha, Connie, Conzada, and Catherine. They lived in McClellan Township. Buried at the Black Cemetery. Another son Peter Alexander (1839-1881) also lived in McClellan (see family).

They had two daughters that are known of and it's told never married. Jerusha Elizabeth (born 1836) and Sarah born 1841). It is believed there was a fifth child, Goulia D. (1843) married James S. HOWE. Elizabeth remained a widow and lived near her sons. Our subject died February 21, 1843. Where they are buried is unknown.


William King Bean 1834 - 1915
and his wife
Clemenza Thompson 1834 - 1915


King William Bean II 1856 - 1939
and wife Anna Laney


William King Bean Cabin
1834 - 1915


William K. on the right; with wife, Clemenza Thompson, on the left
Woman and child in center unknown.

Wills cabin was located 3/4 of a mile north of Ryder on the West side of the road, down a lane to the west, located (1970's) between George Hicks place and the Rich Davis place. The September 1984 Prairie Historian contained a story titled "A Wide Fence Row", written by Jerry Elliston, that pertained to this old home place. Will Bean and his wife , Margie's great, great grandfather. I went with Jerry and Margie back to the old cabin site in about 1978. At that time the old sandstone lined well, stones from the old fireplace, bits of broken glass and other remnants of the old cabin was still there. A wide fence row of trees still stand today, as Jerry said, "a monument to a fued between an honest farmer and an unscrupulous Land Grabber in those early difficult times" Will purchased 80 acres from the government in Sect. 20 December 22, 1853.

[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 89 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]



Peter A. Bean
Peter A. Bean was born 1839, in McClellan Township, the son of King William and Elizabeth Rightnowar Bean. His father died when he was four, and left his mother to tend the farm and rear her small children. They lived in a log house in Long Prairie, east of Rightnowar School. Elizabeth's family, the Rightnowars, lived on neighboring farms, and were of great assistance to her in raising her family. Peter's grandfather Walter Bean later moved back to Gallatin County, Illinois, but others of the Bean family stayed here, and lived just over in the next prairie. Loving Russell, his uncle who later married Orlena Dare in 1845, lived in Wolf Prairie. Asbury, another uncle married Susan Spearman and lived down in Elk Prairie. His uncle Thomas and his wife Lucinda Finch, lived in Mt. Vernon, and later in Bluford.
Peter A., third in order of birth, grew to maturity, a man of large stature, tall and very broad shouldered. He was very
industrious, and chose farming as his occupation. He farmed his father's 80 acres, and in 1875 acquired 160 acres in McClellan Township. Peter A. built an extremely large log house for his family. This land is now owned by his great granddaughter and her husband George and Clarice Bean Taylor. Clarice is the daughter of Edward Franklin and America Rightnowar Bean.
Peter A. was married three times, the first in 1855, to Martha Jane Thompson. They had: William Adam, 1859-1935, who married Sarah L. Dees and were the parents of Myrtie, Edward Franklin, Fern, Ethyl, Lillian, Mada, and Stanton, (died age 19). Seven other children died young. Ad and Sarah are buried at Rightnowar Cemetery; Alexander Leroy, "Lee", married Katherine Basham and had one son who died young. Lee died as a young man and is also buried at Rightnowar Cemetery; Sarah Cansada (Sally), married Robert Lee Dees and had Lawrence, died age three, Herman, Vesta, Bearon, Sadie, Vetra, Tracy, and Hollie. She and Lee are buried at South Hickory Hill Cemetery. Peter A. married 2nd in 1869, Elizabeth 0. Laney, born 1841, daughter of Robert Marion and Phanata Ford Laney of Washington County. Two sons were born to this union: Perry V., 1871-1 897, married in 1893, Cora Adline Loman, 1872-1902, daughter of Elias and Sarah Gilland Loman. They had two children, one died in infancy, and Syovia, born 1895. Perry died of pneumonia at age 26, and Cora of consumption at age 29. Both are buried at South Hickory Hill Cemetery; their son George Washington, l874-1959, (see this family) married in 1896, Amanda E. Rightnowar and had Alex. Gerald, Mabel, Sadie, and Daisy. George and Amanda are buried at Rightnowar Cemetery.
Following Elizabeth's death in 1875, Peter A. married her sister, Susan Wright Laney in 1876. They had three children and after Peter A.'s death, Susan married Henry Vaughn and had children by him. Peter and Susan's children were: Peter Alva, 1877-1952, who married Sylvia Largent, who is still living at age 89, at Collinsville, Illinois; Charles Herald; Loraine; Emory. Nelson, died young; Georgie; Dorothy; Doran; and Norman. Alva is buried at Collinsville; Flara P., 1877-1963, married George W. Richardson and had Irwin, Roy, and Ronald, all deceased. Flara and George are buried at Bethel Cemetery: Ira Nelson (Barney) 1881-1952, married in 1906 Sarah F. Davie, born 1884, who is still living at age 93, in Mt. Vernon. She is the daughter of Thomas M. and Matilda Wiggins Davis. They had Junie, Reginald, philip, Mararian and Mildred. Barney is buried at Oakwood Cemetery.
Peter Alexander was a lifelong resident of McClellan Township and was a Democrat. He served as justice of the peace in 1872, just two years after the townships of Jefferson County had been organized. Peter died in 1881, and is buried with his second wife Elizabeth at Slade Cemetery in Shiloh Township.
[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 89 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]

James Valentine Bean


Row 1: Hazel Hester, Thelma, Daisy, and Smith Bean
Row 2: Alice Bean, James V. Bean, Olin O. Hester, son of Susan Bean deceased,
Rado Smith Bean, Harriet Samantha, Lowell C., Alan Bean
Row 3: General L., and Robert Bean


James Valentine Bean was born in 1854 in Elk Prairie Township, the son of Asbury and Susan Spearman Bean. James was 10 years old when his father died in the Civil War and his mother married William Baker also of Elk Prairie. In 1876, James V. married Harriet Samantha Martin, daughter of Robert Bartis and Maranda Samantha Greenwood Martin, and they farmed and raised their family of 11 children just west of Nason mine. Their six children who grew to maturity are:

Susan Ann (1877-1901) m. Franklin Pierce Hester. They had Olin O., Hazel, and Glen, who died young.

Robert Irvin (1880-1956) married Rado Smith and had Smith Cullen who married Lucille Hirons, and Thelma Louise (James Norval) True. Robert and Rado are buried at Oakwood Cemetery.

General Logan (1885-1950) married Berthal Maneese, lived in Elk Prairie and had: Helen (Anton) Bichanich who had Joyce Sue, Becky Ann, Jackie Anton, and Benny Joe; Nelda Maxine (Knox) Rowe and Richard Dale and Barbara Ellen; Dorothy (Clyde Newman) Beckham had John Davie and Judith Ann; Rosemary (Oliver Perry) Hirons had Patricia Kay and Harriet Lynn; Ruth Adeline (Leonard Gene) Woelful had Rodney Gene and Marsha Lynn. General and Berthal are buried at Abner Cemetery.

James Allen (1893-1958) married Rose Mary Castle and raised their family in Winona, Minnesota. Their children are: James Castle, John Robert, William Paul, and Joan Rose.

Lowell Casner (1896-1977) married Georgia Mae Peterson. Their daughter Betty (Fred) Hays has one son, Steven Carl. They lived in the Dareville area.

Alice Mae (b. 1899) is the only surviving member of this family. She married Everett Hugh Collins and they live in McClellan Twp. Their son Everett Hugh Jr., married Evelyn Loraine Wolton and had Linda Lynette and Don Corey; their daughter, June Darlene (William Ross) Carroll had Alicia Marie and William Everett.

Daisy (1902-1935) married Orlia Kelley and had: James Burton, who married Norma Lee Lykes and had James Bruce; Kenneth Lowell, Dennis Lynn, and Brenda Joyce; Orlia Dwight, who married Edna Ruth Green and had Daniel James, Ruth Loreen, Dena Louise, and Jack Dwight. Daisy, the mother, is buried at Abner Cemetery.

Harriet's brothers were Bartis K. and John Irvin Martin. Her father married second, Isabell Drennan and had Lee and Minerva Martin. Lee married Nevada Beckham and Minerva married Joseph Baker, James V.'s half brother.

[Source: Facts and Folks, Jefferson Co, IL © 1978, page 88 - Submitted By: Cindy Ford ]



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