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Biography of Dorcas (Hanes) Beckett
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© 1996-2003.
Daniel G. Beckett, Jr.
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The Becketts
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Our mother, Dorcas Hanes, the third daughter and fifth child of Calvin and Edith Hanes, was born October 15th, 1861, at the family homestead on Short Run, near the village of Deep Valley, Tyler County, West Virginia. Here she lived, played, worked and attended the meager country schools until she was 18 years of age when she became married to Irvin Duckworth, the son of a neighboring family.

Shortly after their marriage, they established residence in eastern Ohio near Zanesville, where her husband was employed by his uncle. Within less than a year after their marriage, her husband was stricken with typhoid fever and died September 19th, 1880, aged 22 years, 6 months, and 8 days. Thus we find our mother a widow before she had quite reached her 19th birthday.

From what I have heard mother say relative to this event in her life, although she never said much about it, I know this was her first romance and true love, and his death the greatest sorrow ever to touch her life.

She now returns to the home of her father in West Virginia. Here she resides for the next seven years assisting her mother with the work of the household when she was not assisting in the care of the families of some of her older brothers and sisters who were now married and living near.

On October 23rd, 1887, after some months of courtship, she marries our father, William Benson Beckett, as related previously in father's history, which tells the story of her life with him up to the time of father's death in March 1912.

A year or two after father's death, she rented the farm and moved to Athens, Ohio. Here she resided for several years and here she became afflicted with diabetes and was in precarious health for a few years.

In 1926, I think that was the year, she moved to Greenfield, Ohio, a small industrial and agricultural city some 85 miles east of Athens, there to reside with or near her widowed sisters Helen and Lyda who had moved there some years previous. By this time, mother was all alone as all her children were married and this idea of the three widowed Hanes sisters being with or near each other proved very congenial to all.

In the fall of 1931, her sister Lyda died and soon thereafter she and our sister Alice (Addie), who was now a widow, purchased Aunt Lyda's home from her son and only child, Bleilie. Here she resided with her daughter Addie until her death on June 25th, 1947, aged 85 years, 8 months, and 10 days, and lies buried with father in Asbury Church Cemetery, Athens County, Ohio.

It was to mother we always went for comfort, sympathy and encouragement. She was our guide and refuge in every time of trouble. At no time, day or night, was the cry of her children unheeded. Her love was all-consuming. Yet she had the good judgement and sense not to permit her to coddle us or fail to punish or correct our errors and wrong doings; she, too, could use the rod when and where it could do the most good.

What a remarkable person and mother, always cheerful and ready to face sorrow and adversity with a hopeful outlook. Truly a woman that can bring eight children into the world and rear them to honorable manhood and womanhood under the vicissitudes of those years in which she lived is worthy of every admiration and love to which a mother could be entitled.