William Beck

William Beck was born in Grey Abbey, County Down, Ireland, in northern Ireland on May 30, 1819, the son of Alexander and Ann McCullough Beck. The family emigrated first to New Brunswick, Canada and then to New York, arriving in either 1826 or 1828. We have the certificate of naturalization issued to Alexander Beck on the ninth of November in the 65th year of the Independence of the United States (1837).

William had one brother, James, who was born in 1816, and married Margaret Graham, and three sisters: Mary, who married Samuel Hay; Isabella, who married John Von Dolson; and Margaret, who married Nathaniel Barr, and lived in Newburgh, New York.

William married Anne Elizabeth Cornelius, the daughter of William and Rachel Williams Cornelius, on January 2, 1844. The Cornelius parents and their two daughters, Anne and Martha, had emigrated from Wales to New York in 1831.

William and Anne had eleven children:

Rachel Beck, born December 18, 1844, died January 25, 1845, aged five weeks and three days.
Rachel Williams Beck, born May 4, 1846, died January 9, 1866, aged nineteen years, eight months, one day.

Ann Elizabeth Cornelius Beck, born September 18, 1848; died November 21, 1903, married Charles Devoe.

Alexander Beck, born August 23, 1850; died May 24, 1865; drowned in the East River, aged fourteen years, nine months.

William Cornelius Beck, born December 6, 1852; died December 4, 1861, aged nine years.

James Beck, born June 18, 1855; died October 4, 1857, aged two years, three months.

Don Alonzo Booth Beck, born September 13, 1857; died September 19, 1902, aged forty five years, married Eloise Bartholomew.

Theodore Lewis Beck, born September 18, 1861; died May 27, 1927, aged sixty five years.

Cornelius Beck, born October 28, 1864; died March 21, 1935, aged seventy years, married Emma Shortmeier.

Rachel Beck, born December 18, 1866 died January 29, 1867, aged one month and one day.

William Beck, born December 18, 1868; died 1952, married Clara Berry.

William and Anne Beck, and their children, Rachel Williams, Alexander, William Cornelius, James, and Don Alonzo and his wife, Eloise, are all buried in Goodwill Cemetery in Montgomery, New York, about three miles from a farm the family owned in Coldenham. Making an annual pilgrimage to the cemetery to clean up and replant the Beck plot was a spring excursion for the family.

Cornelius Beck is buried at Kensco, New York; Theodore Lewis Beck and his wife and children are all buried at Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, as is William Beck and his wife, Clara, and Ann Beck Devoe. It is not known where the two infant Rachels are buried, but probably in New York City.

William Beck was a manufacturer of ribbons and trimmings for the dress trade. His factory was located at No. 10 Vestry, near Canal Street in New York. His sons, incorporated as Beck Brothers, moved their factory to Hoboken, New Jersey. William Beck died on Wednesday, April 2, 1884, at the age of 65. The funeral service was held at his home at 355 West 20th Street at 8 o'clock on Friday evening. There were also services the following day at Goodwill Church at 12:30.

Anne Cornelius Beck died on December 12, 1908 in Summit, New Jersey.