Friday, July 14, 2017

Indiana Pioneer - Noah Beauchamp

Indiana pioneer Noah Beauchamp who moved his family into the Indiana Territory around 1813, settled in Franklin County.

Noah Beauchamp was born in Maryland in 1785 and moved with the family to Kentucky in the 1790s. He married and left Kentucky for Ohio in 1804. The Beauchamps lived in Montgomery County until they eventually left for the Indiana Territory.

Noah purchased land in Section 24 of what was to become Connersville on December 14, 1812. It is most likely that his family would have moved  after his wife Elizabeth had her baby Mary who was born on March 13, 1813. Noah very likely would have gone ahead of his family and cleared some land and built a cabin.

Noah remembered events years later, "I moved to the State of Indiana and purchased a quarter section of land adjoining the town of Connersville... and settled in the woods; made some improvements and then I traded off that place, and my last residence in that county, was on Williams' creek."

It was living in Franklin County that he was commissioned as a lieutenant in the 11th Indiana Regiment during the War of 1812. There are only two sources for this information. A 1900 book which was transcribed from the original hand written Executive Journal of India Territory and another from 1901 by William Pratt, entitled The History of the National Guard of Indiana. In the Executive Journal of Indiana Noah is listed as, "Noah Beachan" and in The History of the National Guard of Indiana he is listed as "Noah Beacham."

According to Pratt many of the early records were lost or destroyed, "official papers relating to the early days of Indiana are few. Many were lost during the moving of the State government from one capital to another, and from one State House to another. A wagon load of these valuable old documents was sold as waste paper by a janitor who did not realize their value. The record of early days is necessarily incomplete."

So for hundreds of soldiers in these early days of Indiana there are either no records of their service or very few. The fact that Noah was appointed a lieutenant is the only reason it is known that he was even in the 11th Regiment because the order survives in the Executive Journal. He died in 1842, before pensions were offered, so he never applied for one. Pension applications and records are a great source of genealogical and historical information.