BIOGRAPHIES

Clay County Arkansas Genealogy Trails

ALEXANDER, S. W.

ALLEN, J. H.

ALLEN, Capt. John J.

BARE, Joshua

BARNES, W. F.

BEARDEN, Zachariah T.

S. W. ALEXANDER, manufacturer and dealer in hard wood lumber, railroad ties, wagons, agricultural implements, car material, etc., at Corning, Ark., was born in Hancock County, Ind., October 17, 1835, his parents, James and Mary (Mac Michael) Alexander, and his grandparents, on both sides, being natives of Orange County, N. C. They all emigrated at an early day (about 1828) to Indiana where they died. The great-grandfather was in the Revolutionary War, and fired the first cannon in that service. James Alexander remained in Hancock County, Ind., until the spring of 1857, when he emigrated to Polk County, Iowa, where he was living at the time of his death, in 1882. His wife died in 1872, having borne five children: John C., Julia A., Simeon W., James A. and Louisa. Mr. Alexander was a farmer by occupation.

Simeon W. Alexander, our subject, was reared and educated in his native county, and from childhood has been familiar with farm life. On reaching his majority he was married, and emigrated to Illinois, locating in Cumberland County, where he was engaged in the saw-mill business until 1859, when he removed to Polk County, Iowa, but returned to Illinois in December, 1863, and there resided until the fall of 1869. In the fall of that year he sold his mill and returned to Iowa, where he remained until 1886, being engaged in both lumbering and farming on an extensive scale. He owned 400 acres of good land, and on coming to Clay County, embarked in the lumber business, putting up a large sawmill. He still continues this business and employs a great many hands. He owns about 2400 acres of land in Clay County, some 1000 of which will make fine farming land when improved. He also has one of the best houses in the county, situated in Corning.

October 23, 1856, he was married to Miss Mary Faster, a native of Indiana, by whom he has seven children: William (in Dakota), Lucy M., Cora (wife of T. J. Conway, of Chicago), Charles W., Addie, Freddie and Edward. Mr. Alexander is a member of the I. O. O. F. and is one of the public-spirited men of Clay County, always being ready to advance the interests of the people.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 196.



J. H. ALLEN, stockman and farmer of Clay County, Ark., was born in North Carolina in July, 1828, being the eighth of nine children born to Isaac and Sarah (Hawkins) Allen, who were born in North Carolina and Virginia, respectively, the latter being a daughter of a Revolutionary patriot.  Both parents died on their home farm in North Carolina.  J. H. Allen attended the public schools for some time and remained at home until twenty-four years of age, being engaged in overseeing the farm until the breaking out of the Rebellion, when he gave up this work and began operating a grist mill.  In November, 1866, he came to what is now Clay County (then Randolph County), and settled twenty-five miles from Pocahontas, in which locality he rented land for some time.  He then purchased 380 acres of wild land two miles west of Knobel, on which he immediately began to make improvements.  At the present time he has 150 acres under cultivation, well improved with good buildings, orchard, fences, etc.  He has added 120 acres to his original purchase, on which he raises a large number of horses, cattle and hogs each year.  He has devoted most of his cultivated land to corn and stock for his cattle and horses, but this year (1889) has put in about fifty acres of cotton.  He has always been quite active in politics, and has held the office of justice of the peace for ten years, and has been a school director a number of years.  In 1853 he married Miss Margaret Wagner, who was born in North Carolina, and by her had five children:  William, John, Isaac, Henry, and Albert, all of whom are dead.  In 1871 he married Miss Nancy Demaree, a native of Illinois, and to them were born three children:  Amanda, Jesse and David, all now living at home.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 196-197.


CAPT. JOHN J. ALLEN was born in Lee County, Ga., on the 2nd of July, 1841, and is the son of Edward M. and Mary J. (Knight) Allen.  The father was born in the "Palmetto State" in 1819 of Scotch-Irish parents, and was a mechanic and ginwright, making machines by hand.  He was taken to Georgia when small, and was there reared to manhood.  During the Indian troubles in the Southern States, especially in Florida, Mr. Allen participated as a private, and received in payment for his services a land warrant for 160 acres, and in 1853 chose the land on which Capt. John J. Allen now resides.  Prior to this, however, he took a trip through Texas, Arkansas, Mississippi and the Indian Territory, making the journey on horseback, a distance of 3,000 miles.  He then returned to Georgia, and the following year (1853) located in Arkansas, the nearest post-office at that time being sixteen miles distant, and the second nearest (Pocahontas) fifty miles distant.  The families of McNiel, Nettles, Wooter, Singleton, Copeland, Sexton and White, were the only ones within a radius of ten miles.  Wild animals roamed the country at will, and Indians were also very numerous.  Schools were almost unknown, and Mr. Allen assisted in building many of the first houses.  John G. Taylor, a Missionary Baptist minister, came with Mr. Allen to the State, and preached the first sermon in Northeast Arkansas.  The latter opened thirty acres of land the first year, which was heavily covered with timber.  He was a slave owner, and served for twelve months in the confederate army under Price, holding the rank of captain, when he resigned on account of his age.  He died in 1877.  His wife was born in Jasper County, Ga., about 1822, and was there married to Mr. Allen, by whom she became the mother of ten children:  William A., John J., Elizabeth J., Edward M., Thomas M., living to be grown, and the following dying in infancy:  Martha, Stapie, and two infants.  Mrs. Allen died in 1860, and Mr. Allen then married Sarah J. Palmer, who bore him five children:  Robert, Georgia L., George W., Willie, and Odus.  Capt. Allen, our subject, has resided in Arkansas since twelve years of age, but spent his entire school days in Georgia.  He was reared on the farm on which he is now residing, and remained at home until his marriage at the age of eighteen years, when he was engaged in farming until 1861.  Then he enlisted in Company H, Fifth Arkansas Volunteer Infantry, and served until the close of the war, participating in many battles:  Helena, Fredericksburg, Boonville, Lexington, Newtonia, and many others of less note.  He enlisted as a private, but was promoted to captain, and was then transferred to the cavalry, serving two years.  After coming home he engaged in farming, and in 1868 opened a mercantile establishment at Scatterville, and followed this occupation in connection with ginning for four years.  He then removed to Tilton, where he was occupied in business until August, 1888.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 197.


JOSHUA BARE, farmer and stock raiser of St. Francis Township, is a fair sample of what can be accomplished by industry and perseverance.  Although starting life with a limited amount of this world's goods, he is now one of the substantial farmers of the county, and is the owner of 240 acres of land in the home place, with 160 acres cleared, on which he has good buildings.  Aside from this he is the owner of another tract of land in the township, one and a quarter miles from the home place, consisting of 160 acres of timber land.  He also possesses some 320 acres in the St. Francis bottoms, with about 100 acres cleared, and has an interest in 205 acres of other lands, all the result of industry and good management.  Mr. Bare was born in Crawford County, Ind., December 13, 1833, and is the son of Jacob Bare and Nancy (Copple) Bare, the latter of German descent.  The father was born in Virginia but was reared in Indiana.  After marriage he settled in Crawford County of that State, where he followed farming until about 1843, when he moved to Illinois and settled in Jefferson County.  He resided there up to 1868, when he came to Arkansas, and located in what is now Clay County.  Here he died in February 1877.  He served as sheriff and deputy sheriff in Indiana, and was quite a prominent man.  Joshua Bare was reared in Jefferson County, Ill., and came to Arkansas in 1855, locating in Clay County, but what was then Greene County, and entered eighty acres of land.  He then bought eighty acres near Brown's Ferry, resided there about fifteen years, after which he sold this, and bought the place where he now lives.  He has been four times married; first to Miss Susan Williams; then to Nancy Brown, who bore him one daughter, Peggy A., wife of John Nettle; his next marriage was to Mrs. Nettle, a widow, who bore him four children:  Clarissa (wife of Wiley Thomas, Joshua, Bettie and Arabella.  Mr. Bare's fourth marriage was to Mrs. Marietta Sarver, a widow, and the daughter of Jacob Sarver.  Three children were born to this union:  Jacob, Mattie and John Harry.  When Mr. Bare first came to the State it was a comparative wilderness, and for about  eleven winters he was engaged in trapping.  He has killed bear, wolves, wild cats, lots of deer, turkey and small game.  He would average about $200 worth of furs annually at that business.  Mr. Bare has been a member of the I. O. O. F. for thirteen years.  Mrs. Bare belongs to the Christian Church.  An interesting volume might be written of many of Mr. Bare's hunting expeditions, but space will permit mention of only the following:  In 1867, one of his neighbors, Billy Maner, a single man, had struck camp some seven miles south of where our subject lived in a wild locality on Old River.  Mr. Bare went on one occasion to spend the night with him, but found the unsuccessful hunter without food.  Starting the next morning with a determination to return only after he shot something, he traveled some distance, occasionally seeing game which could not be secured.  Later on, while not far from camp, he killed tow wolves, and being a humorous disposition, the thought was suggested to pass off this meat upon the unsuspecting Billy as venison.  Bringing a portion of the animal to headquarters (together with a squirrel), and assuring him that a large buck had been killed, the mess was eaten by the victim of Mr. Bare's joke, with a casual remark as to the toughness, etc.  Subsequently the truth was told.  Imagination rather than words can picture the result of such a revelation.  In 1876 a three-days' hunt was indulged in by Mr. Bare, two of his nephews and a little negro boy.  Starting with a cart and yoke of oxen, they drove into a bottom farm, proceeding horse-back until about a mile from their camping ground, when fresh bear tracks were discovered.  Before very long an effort to secure bruin was commenced, and proved fruitful.  While waiting for help to remove the animal (which weighed about 400 pounds) a large buck was killed by Mr. Bare.  These furnish but mere instances of his good fortune with the gun and rifle.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 198-199.


W. F. BARNES, undertaker and furniture dealer, of Corning, Ark., has been in business here since August 1888, when he purchased his stock of goods of Mr. Bishop and continued at that stand until June 1, 1889, when he moved to his present location.  His establishment is a two-story frame building, 40x20 feet, now under process of erection, which will, when finished, be commodious and substantial.  Mr. Barnes' success in this line has been due to his energy and enterprise, and his establishment is now one of the leading concerns of this kind in the county.  He was born in Lawrence County, Ill., in 1856, and was the eldest in a family of eight children born to John and Jane (Thompson) Barnes, who were Kentuckians by birth, but emigrated to Illinois in their youth, where they grew to maturity and met and married.  The father settled with his parents in Lawrence County in 1826, and afterward became a successful farmer and teacher of that region., following these occupations for many years in that State.  He died in 1885, but his widow is still residing in Illinois.  The paternal grandfather was an early settler of Illinois, where he also makes his home.  Mr. Barnes was early inured to the duties of farm life, and during his youth also attended the common schools of Lawrence and Wabash Counties, Ill.  He engaged in farming for himself in that State and was married there in 1882 to Miss Ella P. Price, a native of that county.  Her parents, Joseph and Hannah (Dart) Price, were born in Ohio and Kentucky, respectively, and are now residing in Illinois.  In 1887 Mr. Barnes came to Corning, Ark., and until 1888 worked at the carpenter's trade, but has since been engaged in his present business.  Politically he is a Democrat, and always supports the principles of that party.  He belongs to the K. of H. and the I. O. G. T., and he and wife are members of the Methodist Church.  They are the parents of two children:  Opal V. and Verna D.  Mr. Barnes has done well financially, is the owner of some valuable town property, and predits a bright future for Corning.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 199.


ZACHARIAH T. BEARDEN was born in Montgomery County, Tenn., September 29, 1849, and is the son of John and Prudence (Majors) Bearden.  John Bearden was born in Montgomery County, Tenn., and is of Irish-English parentage.  He received a fair, common-school education, later followed farming and emigrated to Clay County, Ark., in 1851.  The county was called Greene County at that time, but was afterward changed to Clay.  At that early day there were but six families in an area ten miles square, and all the hardships and privations incident to pioneer life were experienced by Mr. Bearden.  Schools were taught on the subscription plan,a nd church was held about once a month in old log cabins.  Mr. Bearden was a slave owner but generally perferred white labor.  He was the owner of a large farm, but was broken up during the war.  He died May 10, 1888, being seventy-six years of age.  During life he was never an office seeker,but was elected by the people, without solicitation, to the office of county treasurer.  Mrs. Bearden was also reared in Tennessee, grew to womanhood there, and was married in that State.  Nine children were the result of this union:  Richard E., Isom K., Judge H., Zach. T., Samuel J., Susan U., William J., Robert W. and Mary E.  Mrs. Bearden died in this county, August 16 1877.  Grandfather and Grandmother Bearden died in Tennessee; she was a native of North Carolina.  Grandfather and Grandmother Majors were natives of West Virginia, and at an early day emigrated to Tennessee.  Zachariah T. Bearden came with his parents to Arkansas when two years of age, settling in Greene County, and there remained.

Source:  Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Northeast Arkansas, Goodspeed Pub. Co, c1891, p. 199.


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