George T. Beach, superintendent of the Sabetha (Kan.) City Schools, and a well known educator of northeastern Kansas, was born on a farm in Pottawatomie county, Kan., July 25, 1875. He is of English descent and traces his ancestry back seven generations to Thomas Beach, the Pilgrim, who was one of the original settlers of New Haven colony under Davenport. Prof. Beach is a son of Simeon Beach, a Pottawatomie county pioneer who was born in Madison county, Ohio, on Christmas day, 1838. He was the son of Obil Beach, born in New Haven, Conn., in 1807, the son of Obil Beach, born in Goshen, Conn., in 1758, who was the son of Amos Beach, born in Wallingford, Conn., in 1724. Obil Beach, the great-grandfather of Prof. Beach, moved from Vermont to Madison county, Ohio, in 1817, and died there in 1846. His son, Obil, was ten years old when he accompanied his parents to Ohio. There he was reared and married, and when his son, Simeon, the father of Prof. Beach, was a boy, the family removed to Iowa, and from thence to Pottawatomie county, Kan., in 1858. There Simeon was reared to farm life, and on Christmas eve, 1871, he married Miss Sarah Dunn. They became the parents of seven children, six of whom grew to maturity. They are: Charles of Kansas City, Mo.; George T. of this review; Benjamin C., who died while a student at Baker University in 1898; Wright, who resides on the old homestead in Pottawatomie county; William of Plainview, Texas; and Ruth, now Mrs. Burton Retter of Wakefield, Kan. Simeon Beach, the father, was a veteran of the Civil war, in which he served two enlistments: first in the Seventh Kansas cavalry, and second in the Eleventh Kansas cavalry. He is one of the few yet living who were plainsmen of pioneer days, who hunted and killed buffalo and other wild game, and who had several skirmishes with roving bands of Indians.
Prof. Beach spent his boyhood and youth on the farm, receiving his early education in the district schools. After teaching a year in the district schools, he took a course in Campbell College at which he graduated in 1897 with the degree of Bachelor of Arts. During his senior year in college, he filled the position of student-teacher, and had then fully decided on an educational career. With that end in view, he entered the Kansas State University and on the completion of his work there, he not only received the degree of Bachelor of Arts, but also the Master's degree in English and Sociology, both degrees being confered on him in 1899, and at the same time a teacher's special diploma was granted him. He then accepted the principalship of the high school at Cottonwood Falls, Kan., in the fall of 1899, and remained there one year when he became principal of the Onaga schools for two years. In 1902 he took charge of the Saint Mary's schools and remained their superintendent until the fall of 1905, when he was chosen superintendent of the Sabetha schools, which position he still holds. During the seven years in which Prof. Beach has had charge of the Sabetha schools, they have not only advanced in efficiency, but their popularity has also increased the attendance in a like ratio, and the number of teachers required now is double the number required when Prof. Beach took charge. He has introduced a normal course and also a commercial course in the high school. Agriculture, domestic science and music are each given special attention during the high school course, and it is no exaggeration to class the Sabetha schools as second to none in the state, as to efficiency.
In 1904, Prof. Beach was united in marriage to Miss Rachel Gurtler of Onaga, Kan., and who at the time of her marriage was a teacher in the Onaga schools. She is the daughter of Wesley Gurtler, a Pottawatomie county pioneer. This union has been blessed with one child: Rex Wesley, born in 1910. Politically, Prof. Beach is a Republican, and fraternally a Mason. He and Mrs. Beach are both members of the Methodist Episcopal church, and he is president of the Sunday School Orchestra Association.Pages 1163-1165 from volume III, part 2 of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed December 2002 by Carolyn Ward. This volume is identified at the Kansas State Historical Society as microfilm LM195. It is a two-part volume 3.
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