John Beecher
Sarah Elizabeth Sands
Peter J. Beecher


Family Links

1. Elizabeth A. Ridenour

Peter J. Beecher 2 3 4 5

  • Born: 14 Oct 1831, , Berks, PA 3 6 7 8
  • Marriage (1): Elizabeth A. Ridenour on 12 Feb 1854 in , Franklin, OH 1 2
  • Died: 13 Jun 1924, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS at age 92 7 8
  • Buried: 16 Jun 1924, Arkansas City: Hope Cemetery, Cowley, KS 7 8

   Other names for Peter were Peter Beeker,10 Peter Bicher 1 and Peter Bigher.11

   FamilySearch ID: M4YD-ZB2.

  General Notes:

If you are related to Peter, please email as you belong in my family tree. Peter is related to other Beecher/Bicher lines found in Mifflin Township, Franklin County, Ohio, and also related to all the Beecher/Bicher lines in southern Pennsylvania.

  Noted events in his life were:

1. Relatives To Research: please email for latest info. Peter is likely a grandchild of Johann Engel Buecher L8BC-M4C from whom descend today's Beecher, Bicher, Beacher, Biecher, and Beichers.

Peter's Kansas death certificate lists his his birthplace as Berks County, PA. and his father as John Beecher and mother Elizabeth Sands/Sanda/Sauda (handwriting not clear on certificate). For a copy email Jonathan Scott Beacher:

So far cannot find an 1850 census for Peter in PA or OH, which likely will reveal valuable clues.

The 1860 census in Mifflin Township, OH identifies Peter's siblings, where he is listed a Peter Bigher but we know it's Peter Beecher because his wife and children exactly match his 1870 family and later records in Kansas.

Living in 1860 in Peter's home are John Beecher, 16, and Mary Beecher, 18, too old to be his children so they must be Peter's brother and sister, suggesting their father died before 1860.

In 1860 next door is Chas. Heyl with wife Eliza, and Charles' marriage and other records idenitfy his wife as Elizabeth Bicher/Beecher b.1827 so she is Peter's older sister.

Charles Heyl is identified as a nephew in his uncle Conrad Heyl's will when he died in 1859 in Mifflin Township, Franklin County, OH. That will was witnessed by Henry Bicher born abt 1822 in Pennsylvania (see ) indicating Henry is an older brother of Peter.

Another valuable clue: Peter Beecher's wife is Elizabeth Ridenour, and in the 1850 and 1860 census other Beechers lived as neighbors to the Ridenour families in Jefferson Township, Franklin, Ohio near today's Beecher Rd. and Ridenour Rd. in Gahanna, OH.

In 1818 Barbara Beecher 2DTP-Q8C arrived with her husband and is buried in Gahanna. Later arrived her brother, William Beecher (1799-1879) LD9K-HDP who in 1850 is in Mifflin Township near George Ridenour, the father of Peter Beecher's spouse. Barbara and William have a brother John Beecher (1789-1865) LD9K-HHF who remained in Pennsylvania and does not appear to be a possible father of Peter Beecher and his siblings. So, the John and Elizabeth on Peter's death certificate are likely another couple.

2. Residence: Beecher Rd & Ridenour Rd in 1854 in Gahanna, Franklin, OH. In Gahanna there is a Beecher Rd. located less than a mile from Ridenour Rd., defining the area where these two allied families lived. The Ridenours farmed the west side of Big Walnut Creek, and the Beechers on the east side.

3. Newspaper: Ohio State Journal: The County Fair, 15 Sep 1858, Columbus, Franklin, OH. 12 The Fair is very largely attended. The number of entries exceed those of last year. There is a splendid display of stock, grain, fruits and vegetables, farm implements, good of ladies' domestic manufacturer, fine arts, &c. &c.

Poultry &C.
P. Beicher, Straugbai chickens, premium
H. Ridenour, pair poorabs, premium.

4. Census in 1860 in Mifflin Twp., Franklin, OH. 13 Peter Bigher, farm laborer, 35, was living with wife Elizabeth, 30; Albert, 5; Sarah, 3; Sylvester, 1; Jno, farm laborer, 16; and Mary, 18, domestic. Peter was born in Pennsylvania, everyone else in Ohio. His real estate is worth $400.

Next door is Charles Hyle, 37, and wife Eliza, 30, she being Peter's sister.

5. Moved: 1862, Inwood, Marshall, IN. 4

6. Census in 1870 in Bourbon, Marshall, IN. 10 Peter Beeker [index in census as Beeker but the handwriting looks like Beecher], farmer, 37, was living with wife Elisabeth, 44; George A., 15; Sarah, 13; James F., 8; and Emma A. 6. Also with them is Wm Rillenour, 35, physician. Peter was born in Pennsylvania, James and Emma in Indiana, and everyone else in Ohio. Peter's farm is worth $2,000 and personal estate $350. On the next census page is Elisabeth's sister, Mary C. (Ridenour) Bell with her husband Aaron Bell.

7. Moved: 1871, , , IA.

8. Moved: 1879, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 4

9. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler: Mr. Beecher and family, of Illinois, relatives of James Ridenour, will make Arkansas City their future home. Mr. Beecher is a carpenter, and builder by profession, and will follow that occupation here., 5 Nov 1879, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 14

10. Census in 1880 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 3 Peter Beecher, carpenter, 49, was living with wife Elizabeth, 55; son George A., carpenter, 25; Frank J., laborer, 19; Emma A., 16. Also with them: niece Serena M. Bell, 5; and brothers-in-law William S. Ridenour, physician, 46, and James Ridenour, jeweler merchant, 39. Peter and his parents were born in Pennsylvania. Frank, Emma, and Serena were born in Indiana. Everyone else was born in Ohio. Elizabeth, William and James Ridenour's father was from Maryland, their mother from Pennsylvania.

11. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 23 Jun 1880, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 15 We call attention in this issue to the card of Beecher & Son, carpenters and builders, who announce themselves ready to undertake all kinds of work in their line. They are No. 1 mechanics, as their work on Mr. Eddy's new store will testify, and always guarantee satisfaction. Shop on East Central Avenue.
Carpenters, Contractors and Builders.
Shop on East Central Avenue. Satisfaction guaranteed in every case.

12. Newspaper: Arkansas City Republican, 14 Jul 1880, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 16 Messrs. Beecher & Son, whose card appears in another column, are at Willow Springs, Indian Territory, the half-way point between Arkansas City and Ponca Agency, putting up a building for Mr. Dorchester, who intends holding cattle at that place. They left last Thursday, and will probably be gone some two weeks. The dimensions of the building are 16 x 30, one story and a half.

13. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 22 Sep 1880, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 17 The new building just opened by J. L. Huey, as a bank, is one of the best fitted and most tastefully finished buildings in town. The same was under contract, by Messrs. Beecher & Son, who did the work entirely themselves, and the result is one that reflects great credit upon these gentlemen as No. 1 workmen.

14. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 13 Apr 1881, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 18 A great improvement in the appearance of the internal arrangements of the Creswell Bank is being wrought out under the skillful hands of Messrs. Beecher & Son, who have the work in charge. When completed this bank, which justly enjoys a large patronage in this vicinity, will be one of the finest business houses in the city.

15. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 25 May 1881, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 19 The new fence around the schoolhouse grounds, under the skillful manipulation of Beecher & Son, to whom the contract was awarded, is rapidly making a show. It is all of pine, and when completed it will add greatly to the appearance of our school property, and be one more added to the list of our city's public improvements.

16. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 16 Nov 1881, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 20 Messrs. Beecher & Son are busily at work upon the residence of F. W. Farrar, and their having hold of the job guarantees its being done in first-class style. For any and all work this firm can't be beat in Southern Kansas.

17. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler: Messrs. Beecher & Son have the contract to put in the front of L. McLaughlin’s stone store and in their hands it is safe to say the work will be done in the best style of the building art., 10 May 1882, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 21

18. Book: History of the State of Kansas, 1883. 4
GEORGE A. BEECHER, of the firm of Beecher & Son, contractors and builders, was born in Ohio in 1855, son of Peter and Elizabeth Beecher, natives of Ohio. At the age of seven years, he went with his parents to Indiana, where they remained ten years. In 1871, he removed with them to Iowa, where he learned the trade of his father, which is that of a carpenter, and for eight years in Iowa worked with his father. In 1879, they moved to Arkansas City, Kan., and established their business at this place, locating on East Central avenue. Business has increased about thirty-three per cent since its establishment. Peter Beecher, father of the above, and member of the firm, was married in 1854, to Miss Elizabeth Ridenour. They have five children, three of whom survive - George A., James F. and Emma A. Mr. and Mrs. Beecher are members of the Congregational Church.

19. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 12 Dec 1883, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 22 Messrs. Beecher & Son have the contract for the erection of Mrs. Morse's new residence in the southeast part of town.

Mr. J. P. Johnson inttends to commence the erection of a residence building in our city shortly. Messrs. Beecher & Son we understand are figuring on the contract.

20. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 23 Jul 1884, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 23 Messrs. Beecher & Co., who recently put up an establishment just south of the foundry, are now busily engaged in scroll sawing, turning, ripping, bracket, and baluster and every description of wood work, etc., for the execution of which in first-class style they have put in approved machinery. Parties needing this kind of work should call on Beecher & Co.

21. Kansas State census in 1885 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 24 Peter Beecher, gardner, 53, was living with Elizabeth, 58; G. A. 29 carpenter; R. F., 22, stone man; Daughter, 20, miliner; S. M. Bill, 10, and W. S. Ridenaur, 50, vineyardist. Peter was born in Pennsylvania, Elizabeth and W.S. in Ohio. [The column to indicate where they were living before Kansas is blank.].

22. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 29 Jul 1885, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 25 ATTENTION CONTRACTORS AND BUILDERS! Having the only Power Wood Lathe, Scroll and Rap Saw In the City, we are now prepared to do Ripping, Rabbeting, Scroll Sawing, and Turning; make Doors and Window Frames, Brackets, Balusters, Odd Sash and Doors, Counters, Table Counters, etc. Your Patronage Respectfully Solicited.
BEECHER & CO., One Door South of Machine Shop.

23. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler, 7 Oct 1885, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 26 S. F. Steinberger moved into his elegant and commodious new store last week, in the Frick Bros. building. The counters and prescription stand are the work of Beecher & So., of this city; they are tastefully designed, well made, and the former with their handsome and well filled show cases, present a really fine appearance. Steinberger is a man of taste and irrepressible energy, and his liberal outlay in show bottles, toilet articles, and fancy goods generally has enabled him to furnish and stock as handsome a drug store as can be found in Southern Kansas. The elaborate and ornate gold lettering in his window is the work of Thomas E. Braggins, and reflects credit on his skill as an artist.

24. Newspaper: Arkansas City Republican, 8 May 1886, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 27 J. Young, of Chicago, was in the city the first of the week and purchased 30 resident lots in Beecher & Sons addition. The consideration was $6,500.

John Young, of New York City, made a purchase of 9 lots in Beecher & Son's addition; the consideration was $900.

Rev. T. J. Anderson, of Caldwell, sold two acres of land at the foot of Summit Street, to W. J. Halleck of Topeka, for $2,000. Mr. Halleck also purchased four lots in Beecher & Son's addition, paying for them $450.

Ten lots in the Beecher addition were sold to Mrs. Wing, of this city; the consideration was $1,000.

F. W. Farrar purchased 5 lots in Beecher addition, paying $500 therefor.

N. T. Snyder paid $700 for six lots in Beecher addition.

F. C. Newman came in from Osage City yesterday and had been in the city not longer than an hour when he made a purchase of 9 lots in Beecher's addition. He paid $1,000.

25. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: P. Beecher bought the J. T. Bayond place yesterday, in the second ward, for $13,500., 27 Jan 1887, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 9

26. Newspaper: Weekly Republican-Traveler, 13 Apr 1888, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 28 Frank Ruth and his brother, Charles, yesterday bought out P. Beecher's stock of books and stationery, located on Fifth avenue. Mr. Kuth will move his present stock of goods from south Summit to Fifth avenue. The firm will be styled Kuth Brothers.

27. Newspaper: Canal City Dispatch: P. Beecher has bought a part of O. P. Houghton's land on the west side, on which he will build a residence., 16 Feb 1889, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 29

28. Census in 1895 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 30 Peter Beecher, 63, was with Elizabeth, 69; Emma, 31; and S. May Bell, 20. Peter was born in Pennsylvania, Elizabeth in Ohio, and the others in Indiana. Everyone's occupation was farmer and all came to Kansas from Iowa.

Next door is G. A. Beecher, 40; Sadie P., 33; Carl A., 5; and Maggie, 2. G.A. was born in Ohio, Sadie in Illinois, and the children in Kansas. G.A. was a carpenter who came from Iowa. Sadie came to Kansas from New Mexico.

The post office Arkansas City. The township is Bolton.

29. Newspaper: Arkansas City Traveler: "Peter Beecher is laid up with a fractured shoulder. He was hauling fodder Monday when he got his foot caught in the lines and fell from the wagon. The wagon wheel was backed against him, injuring his shoulder.", 2 Feb 1898, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 31

30. Census in 1900 in Bolton Twp., Cowley, KS. 6 George Beecher, farmer, 45, born Jan 1855, was married for 13 years to wife Sadie, 38, Sept 1863. She has birthed two children, both alive in 1900: Carl A., 10, Oct 1889; and Maggie, 8, Apr 1892. George and his mother was born in Ohio, his father in Pennsylvania. Sadie was born in Illinois, her father in Ohio and mother in Indiana. The children were born in Kansas.

Living next door is George's father, Peter Beecher, farmer, widowed, 68, born Oct 1831 in Pennsylvania where his parents were born. He is with his daughter, Emma A., 36, born Feb 1864 in Indiana. Her mother was from Ohio.

31. Census in 1910 in Bolton Twp., Cowley, KS. 32 Peter Beecher, 78, widowed, was living iwth daughter Emma A., 46. He and his parents were born in Pennsylvania, she was born in Indiana and her mother in Ohio. Peter's occupation is "Fruit Farm", which he owned.

32. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: "P. Beecher and daughter Emma moved to Arkansas City this week. Mr. Beecher recently sold his fruit farm to a man east of Arkansas City who will reside there.", 22 Jul 1910, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 33

33. Kansas State Census. P. Beecher, 83, carpenter born in PA, living with Emma, 51, born in Indiana. Lived in Iowa before Kansas. census in 1915 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 34

34. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: John Ridenour visitng Peter Beecher, 21 Aug 1915, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 35 Mr. and Mrs. John Ridenour of Rochester, Ind., are in the city visiting at the home of Peter Beecher, 214 North Fourth street. Mr. Ridenour is a brother-in-law of Mr. Beecher and a brother of James Ridenour, who died in this city a number of years ago. They will return to their home Monday accompanied by Mrs. Sarah Ridenour, who has been visiting in Arkansas City for the past several weeks.

35. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: His 87th Birthday, 15 Oct 1918, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 36 Peter Beecher, of 214 North Fourth street, yesterday celebrated his 87th birthday, at which time a delicious three course dinner was served by his daughter, Emma Beecher, assisted by his granddaughter, Maggie Beecher. Mr. and Mrs. Frank Beecher, Mr. and Mrs. Al Beecher and daughter, and MIss Emma Beecher were present on this occasion. Mr. Beecher is an old timer in Arkansas City, being a carpenter and he has helped to build numerous houses in the city and the surrounding country. He is hale and hearty, having earned $60 working at his trade during the past summer. Only yesterday he was able to be out and do a day's work. He is well and favorably known here and he has reared a splendid family in this vicinity. His friends will wish him many more happy birthdays.

36. Census in 1920 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 37 Living at 509 N Fifth in a home he owned was Geo A. Beecher, occupation "builder, house", 64, widowed. He was living with his sister Emma, 55, single; father Peter, 88, widowed; and two lodgers. George was born in Ohio, Emma in Indiana, and Peter in Pennsylvania.

37. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: Peter Beecher Quite Sick, 24 Sep 1921, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 38 Peter Beecher, who resides with his son at 509 North Fifth street, who has been quite sick for the past several days, is reported to be somewhat improved today. He is one of the best known residents of this community and he is a building contractor by trade. For a man of his age he has been very active until recently. His many friends in this city will hope for his speedy and ultimate recovery.

38. Newspaper: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: "Peter Beecher, of North Fifth street, who has been quite sick for several weeks past, is reported to be improving at this time and he is able to be up and around the house now.", 6 Sep 1922, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 39

39. Death Certificate: Kansas State Certificate 218 1065, 16 Jun 1924, Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 8 Place of death: Cowley, Arkansas City, 509 North 5th Street.
Name: Peter Beecher
Residence: 509 North 5th Street
Male, white
Wife: Elizabeth Ridenour
Date of birth: Oct 14 1831
Age 92
Occupation: carpenter
Birthplace: near Reading, Penn.
Name of father: John Beecher
Birthplace of father: U.S.A.
Maiden name of mother: Elizabeth Sauda (handwriting could be Sanda)
Birthplace of mother: U.S.A.
Informant: G. A. Beecher, 509 N 5th, Arkansas City
Filed: 6-16 1924 by C. A. Snyder
Date of death: Jun 13 1924 3:30 PM
Cause of death: chronic nephritis about 2 years
Clarence Zugg M.D.
Burial: Arkansas City June 16 1924
Undertaker: J H Oldroyd.

40. Obituary: Arkansas City Daily Traveler: obituary of Peter Beecher on 20 Jun 1924 in Arkansas City, Cowley, KS. 40 The remains of Peter Beecher, late of Arkansas City, was laid at rest in Mercer cemetery, Monday morning, by the side of his wife who passed away twenty-four years ago. At one time Father Beecher made his home in West Bolton, and built up an enviable reputation as a successful fruit grower. For years he and his daughter, Miss Emma, have resided in Arkansas City, where he led a quite active life until recently. He died at a ripe old age, having attained the advance of ninety ormore. He leaves to mourn his passing two sons, G. A. Beecher and J. F. Beecher, his daughter, Miss Emma, and a grand-daughter, Miss Maggie Beecher. A grand-son Carl Beecher died several years ago. Rev. Robt. Norcross, of Arkansas City, officiated at the burial services for Peter Beecher Monday.

Peter married Elizabeth A. Ridenour, daughter of George Ridenour Sr. and Mary Starrett, on 12 Feb 1854 in , Franklin, OH.1 2 (Elizabeth A. Ridenour was born on 30 Apr 1825 in Mifflin Twp., Franklin, OH,3 41 42 died on 15 Feb 1900 in West Bolton Township, Cowley, KS, USA 1 42 43 44 and was buried on 18 Feb 1900 in Arkansas City: Hope Cemetery, Cowley, KS 42 44 45.)


1 Ridenour, Melvin Otho, Ancestors Are Forever, a Ridenour Collection from 893 AD to 2000 AD (17 September 1991, p 144. online).

2 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, International Genealogical Index (R) (Copyright (c) 1980, 2002, data as of January 1, 2006), Batch #: M513353, Sheet #: 00, Source Call #: 0285144 V. 6-7, Printout Call #: NONE, Dates: 1853 - 1862.

3 1880 United States Census, Kansas, Cowley County, Arkansas City, Family History Library Film 1254377, NA Film Number T9-0377, Page 482C.

4 Cutler, William G, History of the State of Kansas (A. T. Andreas, Chicago, IL. 1883), Cowley County, Part 9, Arkansas City.

5 Peter Darcuss Ridenour (1831-1909), Genealogy of the Ridenour family (Published 1908. Online in Books at, Page 29.

6 , Kansas, Cowley County, Bolton Township, Series: T623 Roll: 476 Page: 82.

7 ,

8 (Kansas State Board of Health, Office of Vital Statistics., Death certificate 218 1065 for Peter Beecher, 13 June 1924.

9 , 27 Jan 1887, page 5.

10 , Indiana, Marshall County, Bourbon Township, Series: M593 Roll: 342 Page: 24.

11 , Ohio, Franklin County, Mifflin Township, Series: M653 Roll: 962 Page: 85.

12 , 15 Sep 1858, page 2. The County Fair.

13 , Peter Bigher Ohio, Franklin County, Mifflin Township, Series: M653 Roll: 962 Page: 85.

14 , 5 Nov 1879.

15 , 23 Jun 1880.

16 , 14 Jul 1880.

17 , 22 Sep 1880.

18 , APRIL 13, 1881.

19 , May 25, 1881.

20 , 16 Nov 1881.

21 , 24 May 1882.

22 , 12 Dec 1883.

23 , July 23, 1884.

24, Kansas State Census (Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925.), Kansas, Cowley County, Creswell Township, Roll KS1885_28 Line 9 Family 100 Page H7.

25 , 29 Jul 1885.

26 , 7 Oct 1885.

27 , 8 May 1886.

28 (Arkansas City, Cowley, Kansas.), 13 Apr 1888, page 7.

29 , 16 Feb 1889, page 3.

30, Kansas State Census (Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925.), Kansas, Cowley County, Bolton Township, Roll: v115_29 Page 25.

31 , 2 Feb 1898, page 8.

32 , Kansas, Cowley County, Bolton Township, Series: T624 Roll: 435 Page: 100.

33 , 22 Jul 1910, page 2.

34, Kansas State Census (Kansas State Census Collection, 1855-1925.), 1915. Arkansas City. Page 36-37.

35 , 21 Aug 1915, page 5. John Ridenour visiting brother-in-law Peter Beecher.

36 , 15 Oct 1918, page 8. Peter Beecher's 87th Birthday.

37 , Kansas, Cowley County, Arkansas City Ward 4, Series: T625 Roll: 527 Page: 264.

38 , 24 Sep 1921, page 9.

39 , 6 Sep 1922, page 5.

40 , 20 Jun 1924, page 3. Obituary of Peter Beecher.

41 , Ohio, Franklin County, Mifflin Township, Series: M432 Roll: 680 Page: 85.

42 ,

43 ,

44 , 1900 Feb 17, page 5. obituary of Elizabeth Beecher.

45 , 1900 Feb 17, page 2. Funeral of Mrs. Peter Beecher.

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