Obituaries - Beall
BEALL, NELSON continued
In many respects Capt. Beall was far above the average man. With no scholastic opportunities of special value in his youth, he nevertheless obtained an insight into every practical subject taught at that period. Later he contracted a love for reading, from which, besides gleaning a varied store of information, he acquired a command of language of great service to him in after years. Possessing a mind fundamentally strong, enjoying an intimate acquaintance with all the material concerns of life, he was an entertaining companion. During his youth and early manhood a carpenter by trade, he owned fine architectural tastes, and his subsequent dealings in real estate made it necessary for him to master the science of surveying. Fertile and ingenious, he was able to conceive, adopt and perfect whatever could be utilized in the promotion of his business.
In short, Nelson Beall was a self-made man. He achieved proficiency in all his employments and crowned it with wealth. His estate embraces valuable properties in seven states. In the field of politics he sought no distinctions, but many important business interests committed to his administration he discharged well every trust and duty. A self-exertion which mastered nearly every circumstance won for him a successful manhood which towered over many of his youthful contemporaries who started under equal or more favorable auspices.
Only one thing baffled his researches. He would have found, if possible, the mystery of human life, its genesis and destiny. Like one who fain would have learned all of the Before and Beyond, he was ever ready to say:
We are born, we laugh, we weep,
We love, we droop, we die;
Ah, wherefore do we laugh or weep?
Why do we live or die?
Who knows the deep secret?
Alas! not I.
As we have stated, however, he went into his last sleep perhaps not only fearless of the issue, but eager to meet it. The same honestly entertained views, the same outspoken convictions which animated his conversations abided with him to the end, and in much measure directed his latest conclusions and wishes.
Mr. Beall was born in Frostburg, November 30, 1814, and was, therefore, 71 years, 2 months and 13 days old. The nearest relatives, who, together with his widow, survive him are Mrs. John Winter, of Iowa; Frank C. Beall, of this place, and George N. Beall, of Staunton, Va., daughters and sons; Mrs. Napler Huntley, Mrs. Lavinia E. Kalbfus, Mrs. Addie Taylor and Mrs. Harriet Kane, sisters, and Richard Beall, brother, all of this place.
To the last named he delivered a sealed envelope a short time before his departure for Florida in November last, addressed as follows:
Mr. Richard Beall, Frostburg
This envelope is not to be opened until the day of my death. Nelson Beall. November 26, 1885.
In accordance with the direction which accompanies the address Mr. Beall opened the envelope Feb. 14th, the day on which intelligence of the Captain’s death reached here, and found a paper characteristic of the writer, and of which the following is an exact copy:
‘Know all men by these presents:
That I, Nelson Beall, of the town of Frostburg, in the county of Allegany, Md., have made my will several years ago, wherein I devised all my worldly possessions whereof I may be possessed at the time of my demise, and the same being satisfactory to me up to the present time, I now proceed to dictate and direct how and in what manner my remains shall be disposed of, and how my funeral shall be conducted. Having labored under a certain chronic physical infirmity for the past forty years, and now being daily admonished that my constant bad health will soon terminate in dissolution, I therefore direct as follows:
Having passed beyond the usual period allotted to man, threescore and ten years, and having seen the vanity and pride displayed at funerals—at a cost that has deprived many families of the common necessities of life—for a time at least, I, therefore, if only by way of example, hereby direct my hereinafter named special executor for this occasion to have my coffin made at A.J. Willison's carpenter shop of white pine or poplar wood, in a plain manner, and stained, or covered with some dark stuff, and to put thereon plain, cheap handles, the whole not to exceed in cost twelve or fifteen dollars.
I desire to have no honorary or fancy pallbearers, and, therefore, I name the following
Anthony E. Crosby and Michael R. Olson
28 x 22 cms
Cemeteries, Maryland, Frostburg; Obituaries, Maryland, Frostburg. .
Frostburg (Md.), 1800-1972