Biography of William H. H. Beadle

William H. H. Beadle, born on January 1, 1838, in Liberty Township, Parke County, Indiana, had a distinguished career as a scholar, educator, legislator, soldier, and lawyer. A graduate of the University of Michigan, he served as a Union officer in the Civil War, earning several promotions and honors. After the war, he practiced law and was appointed surveyor general of Dakota Territory by President Grant in 1869. As president of the State Normal School in Madison, South Dakota, from 1889, Beadle played a crucial role in shaping the state’s educational system, particularly in preserving school lands. A dedicated public servant, he was instrumental in drafting Dakota’s legal codes and championing education throughout his career. Married to Ellen S. Chapman in 1863, Beadle had one daughter, Mae Beadle Frink. He was a member of the Loyal Legion and a 33rd-degree Mason. His contributions to education and public service were recognized with an honorary Doctor of Laws degree from his alma mater in 1902.

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