Biographical History of Central Kansas, Vol. II, p. 1326
published by The Lewis Publishing Co, Chicago & New York, 1902
L. P. BEHAM
The laws of nature have provided that labor always brings change, that effort is always followed by result, and therefore when labor is well directed and effort carefully planned the outcome is most desirable. Toil thus brings a marketable commodity and brings in greater or less measure that for which every business man is seeking, - wealth. L P Beham is of the class of representative and intelligent farmers whose energies have been so prosecuted along well defined lines of activity that he is now in possession of a handsome competence, being the owner of one of the fine farms of Rice county, and here he has resided since the 15th of August, 1872.
He was born in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburg, August 31, 1827, and comes of a family whose industry and honesty have been numbered among the marked characteristics of its members. His father, Peter Beham, was born in Butler county, Pennsylvania, and was of Irish lineage. He wedded Elizabeth Powers, whose birth occurred in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, a daughter of Benjamin Powers, who belonged to an old Virginia family of English lineage and was one of the heroes of the war of the Revolution. Peter and Elizabeth Beham became the parents of the following children: Margaret Ann Angney, who is living in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania; L P, of this review; Mrs Elizabeth Servilla Russell, of Rush county, Kansas; Mrs Sarah Powers Templeton, of Barton county, Missouri; and G M H, of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania. The father was a mechanic and engaged in the manufacture of scythes and sickles for a number of years. These implements were of superior workmanship and excellent quality and commanded a good sale on the market. Later he turned his attention to farming. His political support was given to the Whig party until its dissolution, when he joined the ranks of the new Republican party, with which he affiliated until his demise. He passed away in Pennsylvania, at the age of eighty-four years, and his wife was also eighty-four years at the time of her death. She was a member of the Presbyterian church and was loved for her kindness of heart and mind.
L P Beham was reared on the home farm in the Keystone state and to the public school system of Pennsylvania is indebted for the educational privileges which he enjoyed in youth and which formed the foundation for the knowledge which he later acquired through business, experience, reading and observation. He was married in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, in 1857, to Mary Lucinda Foster, a lady of intelligence and culture, who has been to her husband an able assistant on the journey of life. She was born in Indiana county, Pennsylvania, a daughter of James and Eliza (George) Foster. Her father was born in Westmoreland county, Pennsylvania, and was a son of Robert Foster, who was of Irish ancestry. His wife, also a native of Westmoreland county, was a daughter of James George, and he, too, traced his ancestry to the Emerald Isle. James and Eliza Foster became the parents of five children: Robert, who is now deceased; Wallace; William, who was a soldier in the Civil war and was killed in the battle of the Wilderness; Mrs Mary L Beham; and Annie E, wife of G M H Beham, of Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, a brother of our subject. Mr Foster, the father of these children, died at the age of seventy-five years. Throughout his business career he was employed as an engineer or followed farming. In religious belief he was identified with the Presbyterian church. His widow still survives him and is living in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, at the age of ninety-one years, enjoying the friendship and high regard of a large circle of friends.
After his marriage Mr Beham took up his abode in Indiana county, Pennsylvania, where he remained until 1867, when he removed to Franklin county, Tennessee, remaining in that locality for three years. He then returned to the Keystone state and thence came to Kansas, residing in Lawrence, this state, for eighteen months. He also spent several months in Topeka and in 1872 arrived in Rice county, where he filed a claim to eighty acres of land. He also purchased a tract of eighty acres and now has a valuable farm comprising a quarter section of rich bottom land, the productive fields yielding abundant harvests of wheat and corn. In addition to the production of these cereals he has engaged in the raising of stock to some extent. His farm is improved with good buildings, including a comfortable residence, commodious barns, sheds and cribs. A grove and orchard are among the attractive features of the place, and everything about the premises is neat and thrifty in appearance.
The home of Mr and Mrs Beham has been blessed with seven children, three sons and four daughters: Ida, now the wife of S M Sheldon, who is living on the Pawnee reservation in Oklahoma; Elmer and Howard, who are also residents of Oklahoma; Cora, wife of C H Jones, of Wichita, Kansas; Harry, at home; Frances M, wife of Orren Clark, of Atlanta township, Rice county; and Mrs Pearl E Newby, of Sterling, Kansas. The family is one honored and respected in the community. Mrs Beham is a member of the Congregational church. Mr Beham voted with the Republican party for a number of years, but is now independent in politics, giving his allegiance to the men and measures which he believes will best promote the interests of the community. He has served as a justice of the peace, discharging the duties of the office in a fair and impartial manner. The cause of education, of temperance and morality find in him a warm friend and he is a worthy and valued citizen, who during his residence in Rice county has ever commanded the respect and esteem of his fellow men.