Rosa Chambers (1845-1928)

Rosa Chambers was born in August of 1845 in Switzerland. Rosa was one of 6 children. Her family knew her as Rosie. Rosa spent the first 4 years of her life in Switzerland. In 1849, her father, Jacob Chambers and his family immigrated to the United States. At this time, we have no record of Rosa's life from 1849 until 1864.   Rosa became a US citizen in 1864.  It is known that she married John Dinkey, who was also originally from Switzerland and that she was of German-Swiss descent.

Sometime before she was 20, Rosa and her husband moved to Mt. Palatine, Illinois. (This is a tiny village 2 miles east of McNabb in Putnam County.) It was there that her son, John Henry Dinkey was born on July 24, 1865. Rosa's second son was born on November 7,1869 in Peru, Illinois in LaSalle County. He was named Robert S. Dinkey.  Rosa , John and their children are listed in the 1880 Putnam County census for Granville Township. Rosa's husband, John was stabbed in the head accidently with a pitchfork and it affected his mind. He committed suicide on April 13, 1883 by a single shot to the heart.

After that, Rosa moved to Florid sometime before 1885. It was there in Florid that she met her future husband, Joseph M. Beck. Rosa and Joseph were married on March 25, 1889 at the home of John Gallaher in Florid. Together, they had a child. Lillian Edith Beck was born on September 15, 1886.  

Both of Rosa's sons had married by 1900. John had married Louisa Miller in 1887 and had given Rosa two grandchildren. Robert was married to Bertha Miller in 1882 and was living in Iowa. In 1891, John's wife Louisa died. John unable to take care of his children, gave his son Robert to Rosa and Joseph to raise. John's son John Jr. was given to his brother to rear. John's son, Robert and Rosa's daughter, Lily grew up together.

Rosa's daughter Lily married Albert Daily in 1907 and by 1908 they had started a family.  Rosa is listed in the 1900 and 1910 Putnam County Census for Hennepin Township. The Putnam Record (the Hennepin newspaper) mentions Rosa many times though the years in the local Florid news section. It recorded  that her grandson Robert visited her on Sunday, June 8, 1912 from a farm where he was working. The Putnam Record showed that Rosa went to visit family and friends in Peoria on Monday, July 24, 1911. It is known that Rosa's daughter Lily and family and her son John lived in Peoria at that time. Also, according to The Putnam Record, Rosa spent the winter of 1911 with relatives in Peoria but returned to Florid on March 18, 1912.

According to her grandchildren, Rosa was a good woman who stood up for them when their parents were overly strict. When times were tough, they also said Rosa would help their families in whatever way she could. Rosa was a faithful member of the Dunkin Presbyterian Church of Florid and attended church regularly. Her grandchildren can remember her taking them with her quite often.

Rosa's husband had always enjoyed good health until Sunday afternoon, July 11, 1912. The Putnam  Record stated "Joseph Beck had 2 paralytic strokes in a short period of time which alarmed his people very much." His health continued to fail from that point onward. Rosa's son John and her daughter Lily were still living in Peoria during this period. The Putnam Record stated that Lily and her family came to visit in September of 1912.  Rosa's son John and her daughter Lily moved the next month in October of 1912 to be closer to their mother. John and his new family settled in Florid, while Lily and her family moved to Todd's Point (a little town near Florid that no longer exists). The Putnam Record showed that Lily and her family visited from Todd's Point on Sunday, December 1, 1912 .

The Putnam Record also told of what could have been a very serious accident for Rosa. On March 7, 1914, while on her way to the cellar, Rosa fell and broke one of the bones in her left wrist. Since she was unable to care for her husband and home, her son John and his family moved in with Rosa and Joseph so that John's wife could take over the household duties.

1914 was a bad year for Rosa. In March of 1914, Rosa's daughter lost her baby Darlena. The baby had only lived 3 weeks. In July of 1914, her son John was diagnosed as having consumption. He wasn't given long to live. John died on August 27,1914. Then on September 21, 1914, her husband had another severe stroke. Rosa could no longer take care of Joseph by herself. Her daughter Lily and her family moved back from Peoria, where they had been living to take care of her parents.Joseph had a last and final stroke on February 15, 1915. He died at his home in Florid 4 days later.

Rosa's daughter Lily continued living with Rosa until the summer of 1916. They then moved because of Lily's husband's work. Rosa's son Robert and his wife came to visit in October of 1915 from their home in Iowa. During the following years the Putnam Record showed that Rosa and her family continued visiting one another. In December of 1917 and in October of 1923, her son Robert came to visit from Iowa. Her grandson John came to visit from Iowa in 1918 and Rosa's son Robert's wife came for a visit in 1919. In September of 1920, Rosa's grandson John moved from Wisconsin to Florid, Illinois. During the next few years, he was a frequent visitor at his Grandmother Rosa's house. While Rosa's grandson Robert lived in Florid, they visited one another quite often. After he moved to Iowa, he brought his wife-to-be and his daughter, Helen for a visit in 1920.

Rosa was very close to her daughter Lillian and they spent as much time as possible together. The Putnam Record showed that during 1921, 1923 and 1924, Rosa spent Thanksgiving and Christmas with her daughter Lillian and family. Lillian and her family tried to visit Rosa at least once a month, according to The Putnam Record. Rosa would also go for visits to her daughter's place and stay for several weeks at a time. The Putnam Record mentioned that one such time was November of 1921, when Rosa spent 2 weeks at her daughter's before returning home. Rosa continued living in Florid during 1925 and 1926. According to the Putnam Record, her family continued to visit her and she would stay with them for several days at a time. T

The Putnam Record also stated that on August 5, 1926, Rosa celebrated her 80th birthday at her daughter Lillian's home. In 1927, Lily's oldest daughter (Rosa's granddaughter) Alberta (Bertie) and her new husband Remi moved in to take care of Rosa. Bertie stayed with Rosa until her death 1 year later. On the day of her death, Bertie stated that she and her husband Remi were on the front porch waiting while Little Aunt Dinkey (an unknown relative) was with her grandmother Rosa. Little Aunt came to the door and said that Rosa wanted to see Bertie. Bertie went to her grandmother's bedside and stayed with her until Rosa passed away.

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