Ralph Beebe

My loving-hearted mother birthed me on Valentine's Day, 1932. Exactly ten years later the community women's club had a contest to see which lady could create the best, most original valentine. My mother entered me. She didn't win the prize.

I began my writing career by reading. I discovered early that I enjoyed history, because it tells of the wonders of the past and helps me understand why the present is so dismal (and sometimes glorious). During my seventh grade school year I read 57 books. As I recall, that was more than twice as many as the second highest. Reading is a lot easier than writing. Both require focus and imagination, but writing adds drudgery and a need for research and scholarly certainty.

A westerner from way back (all the way back), I graduated from Greenleaf Friends Academy in Idaho in 1950 and George Fox College in Oregon four years later. Eventually I got three other degrees and became a history teacher at George Fox. Along the way I wrote books on topics ranging from Thomas Jefferson to the Pullman Strike of 1894 to histories of Northwest Yearly Meeting of Friends and George Fox University. I was ghost-writer of the autobiography of a Palestinian Christian who was driven from his home in 1948 and lived his final 53 years under Israeli oppression in the occupied West Bank.

In recent years I enjoyed (and un-joyed) the writing of a Civil War-based novel. I told the story through characters from both sides, so the reader can be assured that God was on the side of the North, and that God was on the side of the South.

Wanda, my bride of more than 53 years (married June 8, 1953), and I have three grown children, 12 grandchildren (including three adoptees from Russia and two we let in by marriage), and two great-grandchildren. We live in Newberg, Oregon, where I still teach occasional courses at George Fox University, do some speaking, and take a nap almost every day. I recommend it.


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