Thursday, February 16, 2012

Matere Eakins Beman (1859-1929)

Portrait from Ohio Legislative History 1909-1912, Vol. I

   The political figure profiled today is Matere Eakins Beman, a little-known native of Gallia County, Ohio who served one term in Ohio state senate from 1913-1919. A small biography of Mr. Beman is located in the Ohio Legislative History Manual of 1913, where the majority of this article's information was culled from.
   Matere Eakins Beman was born on June 27, 1859 in Thurman, Ohio. He attended schools local to the Gallia County, Ohio area and married in 1894 to Maggie Thurman. Most of the available sources on Beman mention him as a farmer and stock raiser, with emphasis on his raising of "pure bred cattle". He was also involved in banking in his native county for a number of years preceding his legislative service, serving as the president of the First National Bank of Thurman. The Ohio Legislative Manual also gives a note on Beman's public stature in his native town, citing his service as mayor, town councilman and later as a member of the school board.
   In 1912 Beman was nominated by the citizens of Gallia County for a seat in the Ohio State Senate. He ran as a Republican and was elected to the legislature "by a majority of 1600". After taking his seat in 1913, Beman is noted as giving "most of his attention to bills affecting the farming interests" of his district and state. He served on a number of committees during his Senate service, including the committee on Banks and Savings Societies, Fees and Salaries, and Prisons and Prison Reform.
  Beman's Senate tenure last but one term, and after leaving the legislature returned to his earlier banking and farming interests. He died in Thurman on November 1, 1929, at age 70 and was buried in the Gallia County Cemetery. A small obituary on Beman memorializes him as a "one of the county's wealthiest citizens, and was said to be the largest individual taxpayers in the county." 

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