Hot Spring County, Arkansas, Goodspeed Biographies
D. A. Newman
Judge D. A. Newman, closely identified with the affairs of Fenter Township, has been a resident of this county since 1853. He is a native of Marshall County, Ala., was born in 1819, and is the son of Stephen and Jane (Barr) Newman, natives of Tennessee and North Carolina, respectively. Stephen Newman, a wagon-maker by trade, was one of the old pioneers of Alabama, and a man who took an active part in public affairs of the day. He was justice of the peace for a number of years. He died in 1854, at the age of fifty-two years, his wife surviving until 1885, having reached ninety years. She was an active member of the Methodist Church. They were the parents of nine children: Elizabeth (deceased, married Abner Parris), D. A. (the subject of this sketch), Nathaniel G. (who died in 1865), William Carrol (died in the Mexican War), Rhodie (deceased, married John Ceips), Nancy (now Mrs. Hall, of Alabama), Caleb (deceased), Stephen Jasper (deceased) and Mary Jane (deceased). At the age of seventeen years, D. A. Newman enlisted in the Indian War, under Benjamin Snodgrass, and served six months. He then returned to his native county, became engaged in farming for himself, and in 1847 enlisted in the Mexican War, serving until its close. In 1853, Mr. Newman emigrated to Arkansas and settled in Hot Spring County, near Rockport, where he has lived ever since, excepting one year spent in Texas. In 1861 he enlisted in the Confederate army, in the Third Arkansas Infantry, and served one year. He was married, in 1840, to Sarah Ceips, a native of North Carolina, who died in 1885, when sixty years old. She was a member of the Methodist Church. They were the parents of seven children: Christopher G. (who resides in Yell County), Stephen D., John W. (deceased), James C. (deceased), Hiram J., Lavina Jane (now Mrs. Rayns), J. W. (deceased). Mr. Newman has always taken an active interest in politics, and has held the office of justice of the peace for two years, sheriff six years and judge two years. He is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church, is a self-made man, having educated himself by the light of pine knots, and is not afraid of hard work. He owns eighty acres of land, and is one of the leading men in his county.
Oliver H. P. Norwood
Oliver H. P. Norwood, prominent among the leading citizens of Hot Spring County, Ark., was born in Franklin County, Ga., on August 1, 1826, being the son of John and Mary E. Norwood. The father was a successful tiller of the soil, and died when Oliver was but a young child. After his death Mrs. Norwood married William Wood, who soon passed away. In 1856 the widow moved to Hot Spring County, Ark., where she died, a member of the Missionary Baptist Church, having become, by her last marriage, the mother of four children. Oliver remained at home until his fifteenth year, when he went to live with James Knox, of Cherokee County, Ga. Here he worked on a farm until twenty-one years old, when he was married to Miss Caroline Hammonds, who was born in Cherokee County, in 1834. Nine children blessed this union: Mary E. (deceased), E. P. (farmer of Grayson County, Tex.), Amanda (wife of Frank Parker, farmer of this county), Margaret (deceased), Oliver P. (on a farm in this county), William and Marion (twins, farmers of this county), Evalina (at home), Julia A., John E. and D. R. (at home). At his marriage, Mr. Norwood began to farm for himself, which he has continued with varied success ever since. In 1851 he moved with his family to Hopkins County, Tex., and remained nearly three years, but at the expiration of that time he returned to this county, locating on the farm he now calls home. He owns a finely improved place of 320 acres. In 1863 he cast his lot with the Confederacy, enlisting in Hawthorne's regiment, with which he took part in the battle at Jenkins' Ferry and other minor engagements. Every members of his family, with the exception of one son, is connected with the Missionary Baptist Church, the father being a deacon. He is a Wheeler, and in politics is rather an independent, voting for the man who, in his judgment, is the better qualified. Though at the close of the war he possessed nothing but eighty acres of land, with no stock to work it, he is now, through industry and frugality, one of the most prosperous farmers in the county. He is a typical Arkansan, believing in the elevation of county and State.
Col. William H. Orr
Col. William H. Orr, proprietor of the Commercial Hotel at Malvern, has been in the hotel business for the past fourteen years in this State, and now runs one of the best hotels in Arkansas. The Commercial is finely furnished throughout, and has a capacity of about fifty guests, the dining room having seating accommodation for 100. Under the watchful eye of the proprietor everything is kept in the best of order, and the wants of the guests are promptly attended to; consequently the Commercial is the first hotel in the city, and patronized by the better class of travelers. Col. Orr was born in Lewistown, Penn., in 1824, and was the son of Thomas A. and Catharine (Reighley) Orr, natives of Ireland and Pennsylvania, respectively. Thomas Orr was a miller by trade, and died in 1827, at the age of thirty-four years. Mrs. Orr's father was a prominent farmer of Lancaster, Penn. In 1847 William H. Orr commenced business for himself, at Ripley, Ohio, where he was engaged in merchandising for about three years, then moving to Cincinnati, Ohio, where he embarked in the wholesale and commission business for twenty-five years. He also carried on distilling for eighteen years of that time, consuming 600 bushels of grain daily, and employing fifty-five men. In 1876 he emigrated to Hot Springs on account of his health, and took charge of the Grand Central Hotel at that place, afterward running the Ginn Hotel. Remaining in Hot Springs for seven years, he then went to Malvern, purchased a lot and erected the Commercial, of which he has since been the genial proprietor. Mr. Orr was married in 1848 to Miss Sarah Gray, a native of Ohio and a daughter of Lewis Gray, a prominent citizen of Ripley, Ohio, and a Kentuckian by birth. Mr. and Mrs. Orr are the parents of four children: Thomas L. (who is at present in the hotel business with his father), Charles G. (a prominent merchant and contractor of Hot Springs), Anna (now the wife of W. W. Dutton, the present clerk of Hot Spring County, and a sketch of whom appears in this work), and Alfred S. (a merchant in Pine Bluff.) The Colonel is an active, outspoken man in what he thinks is right, regardless of consequences, and stands high among his fellow-men.
Dr. S. Reamy
Dr. S. Reamy, a physician of Malvern, Ark., is an old citizen of this State, having emigrated from Virginia, in 1852, soon after graduating in medicine from the University of Louisville, Ky. He has since been actively occupied in the practice of his profession, not without substantial success both to himself and to the benefit of the community. He enjoys an extensive acquaintance and the confidence and esteem of all who know him.
Garner M. Russell
Garner M. Russell, farmer was born in Dickson County, Tenn., in the month of March, 1818. His father, Jesse Russell, was born in Eastern Tennessee, and was the nephew of old Capt. Bill Russell, who served under Gen. Jackson in the Seminole War. The Captain had a wide reputation as an Indian fighter, and served with distinction in that war, dying at the age of eighty years. His father was a lieutenant in the War of 1812, participating in the battle of New Orleans on January 8, 1815. Garner M. Russell's mother, Mary Hudson, was reared in Mecklenburg County, Va., and came to Tennessee in the year 1808. In 1836, eighteen years after the birth of Garner, the parents came to Arkansas, settling in what was then Clark County, having to cut their roads through the forests. The settlement was about ten miles east of the site of the present town of Arkadelphia. Here Mr. Russell took up a tract of land--one-fourth section--living on it for a period of ten years, when he died. Before the death of his father, Garner went to Texas to visit a sister. He remained in this State at a Spanish settlement for about seven months, when he returned to his father's home. After remaining but three months at home, he hired out as overseer for James Rambo, whose farm was on the Ouachita River, fourteen miles west of Malvern, on the old military ground. Here he remained for three years, at a salary of $300 per year. Soon after this, he hired to Dr. Richard Barnum, with whom he remained for two years, when he sold out to George Eaton, from North Carolina. To the latter, Mr. Russell hired for eight years, receiving the salary of $400 per year. He was next employed as overseer for Andrew Creduffs. While here, at the age of thirty-five, he was married to Virginia Ryland, and soon after moved to Hot Spring County, where he bought land on the Ouachita River. He began with very little improvements, but, adding to and clearing his property, he now owns 700 acres, about 200 of which are under cultivation. He runs a steam gin and grist mill in connection with farming, and is considered one of the prosperous men of the county. By his marriage he became the father of eight children, four of whom are now living: Attie (born in Dallas County, in October, 1860), Parker M. (born in 1864),, John Thomas (born in 1867) and William Theopolis (born in 1870). Mr. Russell has always been a Democrat, casting his first vote for Jackson in 1838. During the war he was postmaster at Midway. He united with the Methodist Church in 1842, remaining with that church for seven years; then he turned to the Church of God, and has since been a consistent member and a liberal donor to all worthy church enterprises. He is a good neighbor and a loyal citizen, and, withal, is honored about his fellow-men.
William Stanley, one of the most progressive men and an old settler of Hot Spring County, was born in Muhlenburg County, Ky., in 1841, and is a son of Moses and Margaret (Laney) Stanley, natives of the same State. The father was a practical farmer, who came to Arkansas in 1855 and settled at Rockport, where he purchased a farm which he improved and made his permanent home. His death occurred in 1886, at the age of sixty-six years, while the mother still survives him. Both parents were devout members of the Baptist Church and earnest Christian people. The father served with distinction through the Civil War. They reared a family of ten children, of whom eight are yet living: William (the principal in this sketch), Margaret (wife of Thomas Catherine), Peter, John (residing in Craighead County), Caroline (wife of John Rice, residing at Camden), Ellen (wife of Ed Crow), Elizabeth (wife of Elihu R. Ray) and Russell. When twenty-one years old, William Stanley, the oldest son, enlisted in the Third Arkansas Volunteers, and served until the close of the war, taking part in the battles of Fredericksburg, Seven Pines, Malvern Hill, Suffolk, N. C., Chickamauga, in the Wilderness, Gettysburg, Petersburg, Richmond, Spottsylvania Court-House, and a number of skirmishes. He was twice wounded severely, but his indomitable courage still forced him to fight on until the close of the war. After that event he returned to his home and family, and turned his attention to farming, which he has carried on with great success, now owning about 1,027 acres of valuable land, with some 550 acres under cultivation. He also operates a cotton-gin and mill which are both paying industries. Mr. Stanley was married in 1865 to Miss Lucinda Williams, of Georgia, by whom he has had six children: Lucinda (wife of W. H. Catholic), Della, Charles, Willie D., Gatta and Lester. Mr. Stanley is a member of the Baptist church and takes an active part in the affairs of that faith. His life has been one of remarkable energy and enterprise, as he started after the war with almost nothing upon which to build the foundation of his present fortune. He is now perhaps the largest and most prosperous farmer in Hot Spring County, and owes it all to his individual efforts.
Levi Stone, also numbered among the prosperous farmers of Hot Spring County, was born in Robertson County, Tenn., in 1824. In the fall of 1855 he moved to Ouachita County, Ark., where he resided two years, then becoming settled in Clark County, and subsequently, in 1867, he removed to Montgomery County, remaining there for three years. Gathering together his personal effects he finally took up his home in Logan County, and after a residence of six years came to his present home in Hot Spring County, where he has since resided. He owns 300 acres of fine land, with eighty acres under cultivation. He was married in 1845 to Eliza Price, a native of Tennessee, with whom he lived for twenty years, becoming the father of six children, four girls and two boys, all of whom are married and living in Logan County: Mary Ann (aged forty), Saran Ann (thirty-eight), Henry C. (thirty-six), Evans (thirty-four), Julia (thirty-two) and Sythia (twenty-six). He was married the second time to the widow of James A. Bacham (nee Thornton) in the year 1881. She was a native of Madison County, Tenn., born November 8, 1843. To this union was given one child, a girl, on September 30, 1884. Mr. Stone served in the Confederate army from 1861 to 1865, participating in the battles at Oak Hill, Elk Horn, Shiloh, Corinth, Iuka and Port Hudson. At the latter place he surrendered, and after being paroled served under Fagan until the close of the war, taking part in the Missouri raid. He has been a member of the Methodist Church for twelve years, having joined in Montgomery County. His wife is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church, becoming affiliated with it some fifteen years ago. They are worthy, public-spirited citizens, having the esteem of all they meet.
Rev. Robert M. Thrasher
Rev. Robert M. Thrasher, one of the prominent citizens of Hot Spring County, has been a resident of this locality since January 15, 1867. He was born in Fayette County, Tenn., on December 14, 1827, being a son of Robert T. and Sarah (Burleson), natives of Georgia and North Carolina, respectively. The father was the first white child born in Franklin County, Ga., his birth occurring in 1787. He was also a soldier in the War of 1812, and was reared on a farm near Huntsville, Ala., and there married. He afterward moved to Missouri, but returned later to Tennessee, then to Mississippi, and from there to Arkansas, in the autumn of 1845, settling on a farm on Tulip Creek, in Dallas County, where he made his home until his death, October 11, 1851, at the age of sixty-five. The paternal grandfather of Robert M. Thrasher, also named Robert, came from Wales before the Revolutionary War, in which he served. The mother of the subject of this sketch died on July 11, 1875, at the age of eighty years. She and her husband were both members of the Baptist Church. They were the parents of ten children: Elizabeth (deceased), Joseph (deceased), James B. (deceased), Henrietta F. (deceased), Margaret A., Rachel W., Robert M., Sarrah C. (deceased), Jane F. (now Mrs. Dunnahoe) and Thomas J. (of Malvern.) Mr. Thrasher, Sr., was sheriff of Hardeman County, Tenn., and was also a justice of the peace of Dallas County. The maternal grandfather of Robert M. Thrasher was James Burleson, the son of Aaron Burleson, who was the son of Aaron Burleson, a native of Wales, who came to this country and settled in North Carolina, in 1726. He had seven sons in the Revolutionary War, three of whom survived: Thomas (who remained in North Carolina), Jesse (who went to Mobile, Ala.) and Aaron (who with his sons, Aaron, James, Joseph and John, and three married daughters set out in 1784 to join Daniel Boone in Kentucky). Aaron Burleson was killed on the route by the Indians, at the crossing of Clinch River, in Tennessee. His son Aaron was also killed by the Indians at Campbell Station, Tenn. The others all pressed on into Kentucky, but subsequently fell back into Tennessee and North Alabama. James Burleson was a commissary in the War of 1812, under Gen. Jackson, and was in the battles of Horseshoe and New Orleans. In 1816 he moved to Missouri; returned to Tennessee in 1825, and in 1829 he went to Texas with seven sons and three married daughters, and settled on the Colorado River, twelve miles below Bastrop. He died in old age in the bosom of his family. The history of his family is interwoven with the history of Texas. His son, Gen. Edward Burleson, greatly distinguished himself as an Indian fighter and in the War of Independence. He was the hero of thirty battles; was vice-president of the Republic of Texas, and died a member of the senate, in 1851, at Austin, Tex. The voters of the Burleson family in Texas number about 1,200. R. M. Thrasher was reared on the home farm, and received a common-school education in youth, in Mississippi, coming to Arkansas with his parents when sixteen years old. In 1850 he attended the Arkansas Military Institute two terms, and the following year accepted a position as teacher in the same. In the fall of 1851 he took charge of his father's farm, where he remained until 1857, and in 1862 enlisted in the Eighteenth Arkansas Infantry, being at once elected second lieutenant, after which he was promoted to captain. He participated in the battles of Farmington and Iuka, Port Hudson, Corinth and several skirmishes. At the last-named battle he was taken prisoner, but was shortly after released. He was also taken prisoner after the siege and surrender of Port Hudson, July 9, 1863, and was taken to Johnson Island, Lake Erie, and held until March, 1865. He was paroled and delivered on the James, below Richmond, in feeble health. He then started for his home in Arkansas, having to walk 110 miles of the way, and to travel seventy-five miles of the way in a canoe. He arrived home in May, where he again engaged in farming and teaching until 1867, when he came to Rockport and engaged in teaching school. He also spent two years as a Sunday-school missionary in the employment of the American Baptist Publication Society, Philadelphia. Mr. Thrasher was licensed to preach the gospel of Christ in 1850, and was ordained, November 22, 1852, an elder in the Baptist Church, and has been engaged in ministerial work ever since. While in the army he preached and baptized many. Mr. Thrasher was married July 15, 1858, to Caledonia McKoy, a native of North Carolina. her father, W. R. McKoy, was a native of Scotland. They were the parents of five children, two of whom died in infancy: Sallie B. (is the wife of Mr. C. R. Adams, a merchant, of Malvern), Robert W. (a clerk in a store at Malvern) and Anna C. (who is a teacher of instrumental music and English literature.) Mr. Thrasher owns 810 acres of land in Hot Spring and Dallas Counties, and has a comfortable home. He has held the office of county examiner, and has also represented his county in the legislature. Mr. Thrasher has been moderator and clerk of the Saline Baptist association, and secretary of the Arkansas Baptist State convention, and has been very active in establishing churches and Sunday-schools; he also takes a great interest in all things tending to the interest of the community, and is now engaged as a teacher in the Malvern graded school, and bids fair for several years of active service in church and State. He still takes great pleasure in agriculture and horticulture, and makes fine fruit a specialty.
V. M. Threlkeld
V. M. Threlkeld was born in Greenville, S. C., on May 9, 1857. He lived at his native town until 1872, when he visited Hot Spring County, Ark., where he remained some eighteen months, teaching school and following to a limited extent his profession as surveyor. He then returned to his old home, and resided there till the year 1877, when he visited Texas, stopping in Rains County for one year, being elected to the office of county surveyor. His health failing him, he did not complete his term, but returned to Hot Spring County, where he arrived in the spring of 1879. He immediately began teaching school, continuing until the summer of 1880, when he was elected county surveyor. Holding this office until 1886, he made the race for the office of sheriff, being defeated by I. H. B. Adams. He held the position of deputy surveyor till 1888, when he was again elected to the office of county surveyor, a position of duties of which he is still discharging in a gratifying manner. Mr. Threlkeld's father, Willis D., was born in Mississippi, and at the early age of thirteen, left home to shift for himself. He made his way to Greenville District, S. C., where he took up his home with an old gentleman by the name of Kilgore. This man was one of the deputy surveyors of the State, and gave the young stranger an education in the art of surveying. In his twentieth year, young Threlkeld was appointed and commissioned deputy surveyor of the State of South Carolina for the Greenville District. He served in all, as surveyor, fifty-two years of his life. He married Malinda Sheppard, of the Greenville District, and to this union there was born a family of eight children, three of whom are now living: Malinda Caroline (aged fifty), Behethland Butler (aged forty-six) and V. M. (the subject of this sketch.) In 1861 Willis D. Threlkeld enlisted in the Fourth South Carolina Regiment, Capt. James Hawthorne, serving one year in the field, and participating in the first and second battles of Manassas. Becoming unwell he was released from regular duty and placed in the hospital at Richmond, Va., remaining there till 1863, when he was discharged and returned home to Greenville, S. C. He was always a Democrat, casting his first vote for Van Buren in 1837. He joined the Baptist church early in life, and was always a liberal donator to the churches and schools. V. M. Threlkeld, was married in May, 1887, to Margaret T. Alford, daughter of Rev. Leander H. Alford, a prominent minister of Hot Spring County. The fruit of this marriage was one child, little Della, aged about eighteen months. He is a highly respected citizen, and his estimable wife and himself are recognized as among the good people of this county.
Enoch H. Vance, Jr., one of the leading lawyers of Hot Spring County, has been a resident of this State since a mere child. He was born in Pontotoc County, Miss., in 1848, and was the son of Enoch H. and Lucinda (Massey) Vance, natives of Alabama and Mississippi, respectively. Mr. Vance, Sr., commenced life on his own account when a small boy. His mother having died when he was a child, and his father marrying again, he left home owing to disagreement between himself and his stepmother. Starting out when twelve years of age, on foot and without money, he was finally given work in a printing-office, where he learned the printer's trade. He then established a paper at Aberdeen, Ala., and after conducting it for a number of years went to Mississippi, in which State he was married. He lived there until in the 50's, then moved to Arkansas, and entered land in Saline County, and afterward located at Pine Bluff, purchasing a paper there known as the True Democrat, which he edited until 1859. Mr. Vance then saw that, by reason of his political views, he could not publish his paper, he being a Republican and strongly opposed to slavery. So, moving to his farm in Saline County, he lived there until the war broke out, when, in company with William Murry, he crossed the Mason and Dixon line at Springfield, Mo., and there enlisted in the Eighth Missouri Cavalry, in the Federal service, and served throughout the war. He was captured during the struggle and taken to Little Rock, where he was shackled hand and foot and held in prison for a year, when his wife stole the keys and liberated him; also freeing at the same Elisha Baxter, also a prisoner, and who afterward became Governor of Arkansas. After the war Mr. Vance went back to his farm. In 1868 he was elected to the State senate, and while in that body succeeded in having a new county created, which he named Grant and the county seat Sheridan. Mr. Vance was also appointed tax collector of the STate of Arkansas by President Lincoln. In 1877 he settled in Perry County, where he lived until his death, which occurred September 24, 1888, at the age of sixty-eight. He left five children: Elizabeth V. (wife of Dr. William M. Allison, of Van Buren County), Enoch H., Jr. (of Malvern), James A. (attorney-at-law, now of Perryville), Samuel H. (of Perry County) and Robert C. (a teacher in Saline County.) Mr. E. H. Vance, Jr., was reared on the farm, and received the rudiments of his education at a subscription school, there being on free schools at that time. In 1865, when eighteen years of age, he went to Abington, Ill., and entered college, remaining there two years. He then returned to Saline County, and worked on the farm one year, when he was appointed assessor of his county. When Grant County was created he resigned that office, and was appointed county clerk, which office he held for four years. He was then appointed county judge or supervisor. In the spring of 1873 Mr. Vance was admitted to the bar, and commenced practicing law at Sheridan. He was married in 1871 to Eva Thomson, of Macomb, Ill., by which two children were born, both of whom died. Mrs. Vance died September 19, 1873. Mr. Vance married his second wife, Sarah McKee, of Galesburg, Ill., June 22, 1876, and they have two children, Eva and McKee. The latter died at the age of three years. Mr. Vance is a member of the Masonic fraternity and has been honored as W. M. of his lodge, and from 1886 to 1888, inclusive, as D.D.G.M. of the Sixth district. Mr. and Mrs. Vance are both members of the Methodist Church. They are sincerely esteemed throughout this community for their sincere worth and elevating influence.
Charles C. Vantrease
Charles C. Vantrease, one of the younger citizens of Social Hill, Hot Spring County, was born September 20, 1865, of the marriage of John C. and Nancy (Hicks) Vantrease. Growing up on a farm in this county he was favored with good educational advantages, which he improved. August 4, 1888, Miss Ada Stribbling, a native of Hot Spring County, and a daughter of R. M. Stribbling, an old settler of the county, became his wife. Mr. and Mrs. Vantrease have one child, Lucy, an infant. Mr. Vantrease owns a fine farm of over 102 [could be 162] acres, which he cultivates in an energetic, successful manner. His father, John C. Vantrease, was born in Tennessee, in about 1827. Leaving home at an early age, he was married in Tennessee to Nancy Hicks, in 1848. In 1851 he moved to Hot Spring County, Ark., and settled at Social Hill, where he bought a piece of wild land. Being of generous and hospitable tendencies, although an extensive trader, he perhaps fed more men and horses than any other man in Hot Spring County, and rare, indeed, was it that one left him without first having made a trade of some kind. In a few years his little log house gave way to a fine residence, and he found himself with a well-improved farm, surrounded with many comforts and luxuries of life, with his barns always full and stables well stocked. He was the father of eight children, two of whom were drowned, in 1874, while rescuing stock in an overflow of the Ouachita River. Mr. Vantrease was a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, for over twenty years, and was always a liberal donator to all religious and educational enterprises, and a leader in the community in which he lived.
Seaborn Walters, the son of William and Mary (Fountain) Walters, first breathed the warm zephyrs of the cotton-fields on June 6, 1843, in Wilkinson County, Ga. The father, William Walters, was born March 22, 1815, growing to manhood on a farm in Wilkinson County, where he was engaged in farming and school-teaching until the year 1879. Then he moved to Gifford Township, Hot Spring County, Ark., where he died July 27, 1880. He served his country as assistant enrolling officer of Berrien County during the war. Mary (Fountain) Walters was born in Wilkinson County, Ga., December 28, 1814, living there until her death, which occurred April 24, 1877. Seaborn Walters attained his majority on a farm in Berrien County, Ga., where he had attended the subscription school, receiving a fair education. He enlisted, during the war, in Capt. Evans' company of the Fifty-fourth Regiment of Georgia, Confederate army, taking part in the siege of Atlanta and a great many skirmishes. Becoming ill, he was sent to the hospital at Columbus, Ga., wher ehe was confined for three months, and then taken to the convalescent camp at Macon, Ga. From here he obtained a sixty-days' furlough, came home and retired in April, 1865. Settling immediately on a farm in Berrien County, he engaged actively in the cultivation of the soil until December, 1875, when he emigrated to Hot Spring County, Ark., and entered forty acres of land in the forests of Gifford Township, clearing and improving it and making a good farm. He now has 440 acres, with eighty under cultivation, his principal productions being corn, cotton and sweet potatoes. On March 9, 1879, Mr. Walters was married to Manerva L. Bachelor, daughter of Moses B. and Louisa Bachelor. Five children were born to them, all now living and at home: William M., Lacey R., Roena, James A. and Eva I. The father and mother are both active members of the Baptist Church, taking great interest in all matters that tend to elevate humanity.
Henry Clay Ward
Henry Clay Ward first saw the light of day in North Carolina in 1830. His paternal grandfather, Leonard War, was a native of Maryland and a soldier of the Revolutionary War, in which he took brave and active part, being one of the famous "minute men" spoken of in history. His father was Francis A. Ward, of North Carolina birth, who gave his attention to farming as an occupation. Coming to Hot Spring County in 1850 [could be 1856], he settled at Rockport, where he was elected the first county judge of that county. In 1861 he moved to Social Hill, and there spent the remainder of his life, dying in 1879, at the age of seventy-eight years. His widow, the mother of Henry Clay Ward, still survives him. She was also a native of North Carolina, her name being Sarah Miller before marriage. She (as was her husband) is a member of the Methodist Church, in which they always took an active part. They were the parents of seven children: John W. (deceased), H. C. (the subject of this article), Wiley A., M. D. (now of Cleveland County), Mary (deceased), Benjamin Franklin (deceased, a musician in the Third Arkansas Infantry), William J. (an architect, at Washington, D. C.) and Sallie (deceased, who was the wife of Thomas Daniel). Henry Clay Ward was reared upon the farm in a new country where he had no advantages for schooling, but he improved such opportunities as were presented to obtain an education, and by subsequent self-application has become a well informed man. His natural love of mechanics and his inventive genius have often served him in an excellent way. When the Civil War broke out he took a contract to make drums for the Confederate army, and also furnished drums to the Federal army, the Ward drums being found throughout the lines of both forces. Indeed, he is yet called the "Arkansas drummaker." Music with Mr. Ward is an intuitive passion, and he is an expert on the violin, having gained quite a reputation by playing the "Arkansaw Traveler," which piece he practiced with the composer. After the close of the war he settled on his father's old farm at Social Hill, where he still resides, engaged in farming and distilling brandy and whisky. His still has a capacity of twenty gallons per day. He makes fine liquors, the most of it finding its way to physicians and those wanting a pure article for medicinal purposes, and "Ward's Best" has achieved a wide and favorable sale. In 1858 Mr. Ward was married to Miss Nancy E. Reasons, who was born in North Carolina in 1840. They are the parents of these children: Mary C. (now the wife of J. R. Alford, a merchant of Social Hill), Martha E. (wife of Henry Hardy, also of Social Hill), F. Ada (wife of P. A. Peyton, of Malvern), Maud (a teacher) and Sallie (who resides at home). Mrs. Ward and all of the children are members of the Methodist Church, South. Mr. Ward belongs to the A.F.&A.M., of which he is a Knight Templar, being one of the first initiated in Rockport. He is a large-hearted man, and of a hospitable disposition, the doors of his house being ever thrown open for stranger or acquaintance, and the poor and afflicted do not hesitate to ask a favor of generous, magnanimous Henry Ward.
John Randolph Wisdom
John Randolph Wisdom, the son of Brinsley B. and Bethaney (Herne) Wisdom, was born March 22, 1848, in Randolph County, Mo. His father's (Brinsley) birth occurred in Cumberland County, Ky., November 16, 1805, and there he resided until eighteen years of age, when he came to Missouri and engaged in farming. He served in the Federal army, and died December 3, 1888. Bethaney (Herne) Wisdom was born in Boone County, Mo., in June, 1807, and died in 1852. John R. spent his boyhood days in Randolph, Audrain and Boone Counties, Mo., being educated in the country schools of various localities. In 1863 he enlisted in Company D, Thirty-ninth Missouri Regulars, serving until August, 1864, when he was honorably discharged. He then began contracting for lumber and in that and the livery stable business continued for thirteen years. From 1881, to February 6, 1886, he was engaged in steam-boating and towing lumber on the Mississippi River, between Quincy and Louisiana, Mo. At the latter date he came to Gifford Township, Hot Spring County, Ark., and took charge of the large saw and planing-mill at Wyandotte, owned by F. P. Herne, Sr., W. H. Miller, John R. Wisdom and A. G. Hamlin (a cousin to the venerable Hannibal Hamlin, of Maine). The mill employs 100 hands and turns out about 10,000,000 feet of lumber yearly, making shipments to all parts of the United States. Some 3,000 acres of timber land are owned by the company in Gifford Township. John R. Wisdom was married March 10, 1870, to Jennie V. Van Horn, daughter of Robert and Malinda Van Horn. Charles R., the only child born to them, is attending college at Fayetteville, Ark. In 1880 Mr. Wisdom was elected to the Missouri legislature, from Marion County, serving two years. He was the only Republican elected in that county for a period of twenty years. He is a member of the Orders of Knights of Pythias and Maccabees, and an energetic citizen, thoroughly advocating needed reforms and improvements.
J. G. Woods
J. G. Woods is the present efficient editor of the Democratic Guard, which was established at Quitman, Cleburne County, Ark., in 1887, but moved to Malvern on February 1, 1889. It was established by Mr. Woods, who is a native of West Virginia, where he was born (in Lewisburg, Greenbrier County) in the year 1835. In July, 1849, he started overland to California, but did not arrive until the following summer, having to spend the winter at Salt Lake City, on account of the Mountain Meadow Massacre. He remained in California a short time, when he returned to Richmond, Va., there working on the National American, and also on the Richmond Despatch Daily, until 1857, when he came to Rockport, Hot Spring County. In 1861 in enlisted in Company F, of the Third Arkansas Infantry, under Col. A. G. Rusk, in which he served four years. Mr. Woods was in the battles of Gettysburg, Richmond, Suffolk campaign, Sharpsburg, and a number of others. He was slightly wounded by a piece of shell, but not seriously. After the war he returned to Hot Spring County, and in the spring of 1866 went to Texas, walking all of the way from Rockport to Fort Worth, Tex., where he engaged at cattle driving one year, and then joined the Texas Rangers to fight Indians, in which he served two years. In 1868 he married Miss Sallie E. Slocum, a native of West Virginia. He first settled near Fort Worth, on a farm, and in 1869 worked on the Fort Worth Chronicle, the first paper established at that place. In 1873, Mr. Woods moved to Cleburne, Tex., where he remained one year, engaged on the Cleburne Chronicle. He then went to Ennis, Tex., and established the Ennis Argus, which he conducted a year, and then sold out and went to Peoria, Tex., starting the Hill County Record, when he again sold out and bought the Bosque County Herald, and published that six years. At the end of that period, going to Collin County, Tex., he started the Plano Herald, in 1880, and was burned out the same year. he then became the business manager of the Tribune Publishing Company at Decatur, Tex., and at the same time was correspondent for the Galveston and Dallas News. While there he became interested in farming and fruit raising. In 1889 he came to Hot Spring County, and established his present paper. Mr. Woods has a family of three children: Lee, John and Daisy. Mrs. Woods is a member of the Baptist Church. Mr. Wood's life has always been one of activity and usefulness, and he has ever taken an active interest in the community in which he lives. Careful and painstaking in the publication of his journal, he has gained a creditable circulation and deserves the patronage accorded him. In a word, his paper is just what is needed here.