Johan Bucher
(Abt 1825-)
William August Nuess Beecher


Family Links

1. Anna Dorothea Henriette Stroh

2. Wilhelmina Marie Niesche

William August Nuess Beecher 1 2

  • Born: 17 Apr 1852, Tinningstedt: Tewllingsted, , Schleswig-Holstein, DEU 1 2
  • Marriage (1): Anna Dorothea Henriette Stroh on 2 Jan 1873 in Bloomington: Lutheran Church, Mclean, IL 1
  • Marriage (2): Wilhelmina Marie Niesche on 31 Jan 1905 in Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Church, Mclean, IL
  • Died: 29 Jan 1945, Colfax, McLean, IL at age 92 1 2
  • Buried: 31 Jan 1945, Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Cemetery, Mclean, IL

   FamilySearch ID: 2Z3G-8KD.

  General Notes:

William August Nuess Beecher is believed to be related in his homeland to the same ancestors who fathered all the Beecher lines (originating from Bucher ancestors) who came to Pennsylvania in the 1700's and later migrated to Ohio, Illinois and as far west as California. We are using a simple Y-DNA saliva test to prove the origins of all Beecher lines in America. A free DNA test is offered to any male Beecher who descends from William August Nuess Beecher so we can prove this connection, contact for details. Please see our research sites at and

  Noted events in his life were:

1. He immigrated in 1872 to New York, New York, NY.

2. He was a charter member on 28 Oct 1877 in Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Church, Mclean, IL.

3. Census in 1900 in Anchor Twp, Mclean, IL. 3 William Beecher, farmer, age 48, born Apr 1852, was married for 27 years and living with his wife, Annie D., 47, born Feb. 1852. They and their parents were born in Germany, while their children living with them were born in Illinois: Henry C., 28, Feb 1876; Lewis E., 20, May 1880; Emma H., 18, Apr 1882; Edward, 15, Feb 1884; Adolph C., 15, Apr 1885; Herman H., 13, May 1887; Annie M., 10, Feb 1890; and Louisa, 8, Oct 1891. William and Annie immigrated to the USA 27 years ago in 1873.

4. Obituary: on 30 Jan 1945 in Colfax, McLean, IL. 4 William August Beecher died at the home of his daughter, Mrs. Lambert Brethorst in Colfax, at 12:20 a.m. Monday (1-29-1945). He was 92. Funeral services will be held Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. at the Lamb Funeral Home in Gibson City and at 1:30 p.m. at St. John's Lutheran Church in Anchor. The Rev. Hartwig Harms will officiate. Burial will be in the church cemetery.

He was born in Tellingstedt, Germany 4-17-1852, son of Mr. and Mrs. Johann Beecher. He came to America when 20 to Danforth? Later he settled in Anchor Twp. He was a resident of the Anchor Community for 72 years. He was one of 24 charter members of St. John's Lutheran Church.

1-2-1873 he married Miss Anna Stroh in the Lutheran Church in Bloomington. They were parents of 11 children. His wife preceded him in death in 1903. Two sons also preceded him in death.

1-31-1905 he married Wilhelmina Bielfeldt, who died in 1923. He is survived by children, William, Jr., Louis, Emma Hinrichsen, Mrs. ? Lage, all of Anchor; Mrs. ...sta Brethorst, Edward, Her... all of Colfax; Adolph, OK.; Mrs. Louise Lorig, MN; 40 grandchildren; ? great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild.
**typist note: the left side of this obit was missing...did my best.

5. Newspaper: The Colfax Press, 6 May 1976, Colfax, McLean, IL. 5

The Bicentennial Corner

The picture and material for our feature this week was written and submitted by Mrs. Florence Painter of Anchor.

In the year 1872, at the age of twenty, William August Nuess Bucher, son of Mr. & Mrs. Johann Bucher left the lowlands of northern Germany near the North Sea and the Elbe River to migrate to America. He arrived in New York City, then came to Danvers, Illinois. Later he settled in Anchor Township and continued to live there with the exception of a few years when he lived on a farm near Sibley, Illinois (1884-1889). It was when he lived in Ford County that he received his Certificate of Naturalization on March 19, 1889. Soon afterwards he purchased 160 acres of land in Anchor Township at $70.00 an acre, then in 1903 bought another 160 acres at $110.00 an acre. He also owned the house on the site in Anchor where a great-grandson, Delmar Schleeter now lives, and lived there during his retirement. He never returned to Germany saying he had no desire to, as this (America) was his home and country. However, one hundred years later in 1972, a great-granddaughter Mary Bohlen visited the land where her great-grandparents were born and found the area similar in many ways to Central Illinois so that it is not surprising many of the emigrants from that area settled in central Illinois. On January 2, 1873, William Beecher (Bucher had been translated to the English language; married Miss Anna Stroh in the Lutheran Church in Bloomington, Illinois. She was born February 7, 1852, in Germany, the daughter of Claus and Antje Paulson Stroh. She was the sister of Mrs. John (Antje) Schleeter, Mrs. John (Margaret) Breding, Mr. Clause Stroh Jr. and Mr. Reinhold Stroh. Her father, sisters and brother Claus all came to America and are buried in St. John's Lutheran Cemetery, rural Anchor. Her brother Reinhold never came to America. He died in the French-German War 1870-1871 and was buried in France. Mr. Beecher; Mrs. Beecher's brother, Claus Stroh, and her sisters, husbands, Mr. Breding and Mr. Schleeter, were all charter members of St. John's Lutheran Church of Anchor which was organized in 1877. Mr. and Mrs. William Beecher were the parents of eleven children. All were born in Anchor Township with the exception of John, Adolph and Herman who were born at Sibley, Illinois. The oldest son August was born August 13, 1874, and died May 9, 1881. The second son Henry Claus Beecher was born February 4, 1876, and died March 8, 1920. He was married to Miss Margaret Schroeder of Sibley, Illinois, March 5, 1902. Five children were born to this union: William, Ernest, Carl, Ruby and a daughter who died in infancy. William and Carl are deceased; Ernest lives near Arrowsmith, and Ruby (Mrs. George Golleher) in LaMirada, California. The 160 acre farm near Gibson City, Illinois which Mr. and Mrs. Henry Beecher bought in 1911 remains a Beecher farm. The third son William Reinhold Beecher was born on his father's twenty-fifth birthday April 17, 1877. He died Sept. 29 1958. He was married to Miss Henrietta Simpsen, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Henry Simpsen, of Anchor on March 14, 1900. They were the parents of three children: William Henry, who is deceased, Anna Rosalena (Mrs. Clyde Ashley; and Florence (Mrs. Linden Painter). In 1907 Mr. and Mrs. William Beecher bought the farm where Mr. and Mrs. Linden Painter now live, then in 1930 bought the adjoining farm of 160 acres from William Beecher Sr. where Mr. and Mrs. Clyde Ashley now live. The fourth child of Mr. and Mrs. William Beecher Sr. was a daughter Augusta Margaretha, born Nov. 11, 1878. She died May 22, 1959. She was married to Mr. Lambert Brethorst, Feb. 25, 1900. They farmed in Anchor Township with the exception of six years (1905-1911) when they lived in Joliet, North Dakota. They were the parents of seven daughters and two sons: Anna (Mrs. Venie Martin) of Gibson City) Elise (Mrs. James Rassussen) of Algonquin; Ida (Mrs. George Pretzlaff) of Gibson City; Wilhalmina (Mrs. Francis Huston of Gibson City; Siept of Paxton; William of Loda; Margaret (Mrs. Fred Harding) of Gibson City; LaVerne (Mrs. Clifford Johnson) of Gibson City. One daughter died in infancy. Louis Edward Beecher was born May 13, 1880, and died March 1, 1961. He was married on February 25, 1904, to Miss Wilhelmina Bielfeldt, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fredrick Bielfeldt of Anchor. They lived in Anchor Township with the exception of two years when they lived in Scribner, Neb. They owned 160 acres of land which recently sold, and their home in Anchor where they retired. They were the parents of one son Elmer, who lives in Tuscon, Arizona. Emma Helena Beecher was born April 1, 1882, and died Oct 8, 1950. She was married to Mr. Herman Henricson Jan. 23, 1902. They lived on their 160 Acre farm near Eagle Grove, Iowa, for six years, the remainder on a farm near Anchor, and retired in Anchor. Five children were born to this union: twins who died in infancy; Anna (Mrs. Albert Schleeter) deceased; Roy, who lives in Colfax; and Ralph, deceased. John Edward Beecher was born Feb 13, 1884, and died July 17, 1970. He married Miss Maud Hasty, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Hasty, on Feb. 21, 1906. They were the parents of eight children: Ida (Mrs. Walter Schleeter) of Colfax; Edna, who died in infancy; Marvin, deceased; Melba (Mrs. Roy Quinn) of Sibley; Edward of Pontiac; Delmar of Pontiac; Mildred (Mrs. LaRue Trembley) of Colfax; and Ralph of Pontiac. Adolph Christian Beecher was born April 22, 1885, and died March 5, 1965. He was married to Miss Theda Henrics of Sibley, IL on Feb 6, 1908. They lived in Anchor Township until 1921, when they moved to their farm near Okarche, Okla. Mrs. Beecher died March 18, 1978. Two sons, William and Edgar both live in Kingfisher, Oklahoma; and a daughter, Dorothy (Mrs. Don Grummer) lives in Oklahoma City, Okla. Herman Heinrich Beecher was born May 31, 1887, and died May 18, 1958. He married Miss Elsie Guse on March 29, 1910. They farmed in Anchor township and retired in Colfax, Illinois. They purchased a 160 acre farm near Colfax, where their son Alvin now lives. They were the parents of three children: Alvin of Colfax; Violet (Mrs. David Lain) of Colfax; and Lily (Mrs. Vernon Harper) of Colfax. Anna Margaretha Wilhelmina Beecher was born Feb 22, 1890, and died Sept 26, 1972. She was married to Mr. Henry Lage on Feb 1, 1911. They farmed in Anchor Township until their retirement in Gibson City. They purchased a farm in Anchor Township where their son Leo now lives. They were the parents of seven children: Hazel (Mrs. Everett Klintworth) of Colfax; Mildred (Mrs. Ralph Bielfeldt) of Anchor; Louis of Anchor; Leo of Anchor Township; Ida (Mrs. Ebert Watson) of Normal; Merlin of Anchor; and Carmon of Englewood, Colorado. Louise Anna Beecher was born Oct. 28, 1891. She was married to Mr. John Lorig on Jan 24, 1912. They began their married life on a farm near Anchor, moved to Iowa, and then to Minn. Before they retired, they owned and operated a hardware store. Louise is the only surviving member of the eleven children of Mr. and Mrs. William Beecher. She is living in Seal Beach, Calif., where their son Bernard lives. Another son Elwin lives in Waseca, Minn.

It is interesting to note that all the children of Mr. and Mrs. William Beecher Sr. have all farmed in Anchor Township. There were 46 grandchildren and 40 of these were born in Anchor Township.

Mrs. Beecher passed away on Jan 2, 1903, at the age of 51 years. On Jan 31, 1905, Mr. Beecher married Mrs. Wilhalmina (Frederick) Bielfeldt. She passed away on March 13, 1923. Mr. Beecher passed away Jan 29, 1945, at the age of 92. He had been a resident of the Anchor community for 66 years. He was the last of the twenty-four charter members of St. John's Lutheran Church. At the time of his death, he was survived by nine of his children, had 40 grandchildren, 66 great-grandchildren, and one great-great-grandchild (Phillip Schleeter). Of the approximately 260 descendants now living only 13 are residing in Anchor Township. They are: four children and one grandson of Anna (Mrs. Henry Lage); two daughters of William Jr. (Mr. and Mrs. Milliam R. Beecher); two granddaughters and four great-grandchildren of Emma (Mr. and Mrs. Herman Hinrichsen). Although a few remained in the area, the name William remains in the family. Each of the ten children who attained adulthood had a son names William, either as a first or middle name. Many of the great grandchildren also have that name.

Yes, William Beecher whose family history we have tried to compile lived his last years in contentment and peace. He enjoyed excellent health, reading, conversing and driving his car. He visited friends and relatives or traveled by train to Okla. and Minn. to spend time with members of his family living there. This was in sharp contrast to those early years of hardship, poverty, and toil.

Will one hundred years from now bring a brief visit from a descendant to the land which was not wrested from the North Sea, but from the swamps and slough of Anchor Township? Will St. John's Lutheran Church spire beckon as the similar church steeple in Holstein, Germany? Will the fine roads of Anchor Township which have replaced the muddy, bottomless roads of the past be here? Will the soil which the early immigrants drained and cared for and tilled with the walking plow so that they and others in their future would profit from their labors continue to produce? With God's guidance may progress continue in this great country and all its citizens find happiness and peace. May each in his way contribute his talents toward that goal as all early immigrants in the area have done.

William August Nuess Beecher married Wilhelmine Marie Niesche on 31 January 1905. William August Nuess Beecher died on 29 January 1945 at Anchor, McLean Co., IL, at age 92. He was buried on 31 January 1945 at St. John's Cemetery, Anchor, McLean Co., IL.

William married Anna Dorothea Henriette Stroh, daughter of Claus Heinrich Stroh Sr. and Antje Paulson, on 2 Jan 1873 in Bloomington: Lutheran Church, Mclean, IL.1 (Anna Dorothea Henriette Stroh was born on 7 Feb 1852 in Weddingstedt: Weddingstadt, , Schleswig-Holstein, DEU,2 died on 2 Jan 1903 in Anchor Twp, Mclean, IL 1 2 and was buried in Jan 1903 in Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Cemetery, Mclean, IL 2.)

William next married Wilhelmina Marie Niesche, daughter of Adolph Fredrich Niesche and Katherine Wilhelmine Broderson, on 31 Jan 1905 in Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Church, Mclean, IL. (Wilhelmina Marie Niesche was born on 3 Jan 1851 in Wrohm, , SH, DEU,2 died on 13 Mar 1923 2 and was buried in Anchor: St. John's Lutheran Cemetery, Mclean, IL.)


1 The Colfax Press (Colfax, Illinois), 30 Jan 1945, Obituaries.

2 St. John's Lutheran Church Cemetery, Anchor, Illinois (

3 1900 United States Census, Illinois, McLean County, Anchor Township, Series: T623 Roll: 321 Page: 18.

4 The Colfax Press (Colfax, Illinois), 30 Jan 1945, Obituaries.

5 The Colfax Press (Colfax, Illinois), Volume 83 Number 32. Thursday, May 6, 1976.

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