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Goodspeed's Biographies

G. T. Sikes is one of the most prominent farmers of Jackson Township. He was born in Alabama in 1858, the elder of two children born to Miles and Emily (Talbot) Sikes, natives of Georgia. His father was engaged as an overseer in Alabama, to which State he had come at an early day, and where, later on, he was married. At the outbreak of the war, he entered the Confederate service and died from sickness in the fall of 1864. His wife had died one month prior. This left our subject and his young brother, John, with their grandfather, Green Talbot. Mr. Talbot was in the War of 1812, in which he served with distinction and was always known as General. He had been sheriff in Georgia for some time, and was well known in Chambers County, Alabama. He died in 1875, and left his excellent widow in charge of our subject. She died in 1886, and Mr. Sikes takes pride in the fact that as they attended him in his youth he supported and comforted their old age. Our subject's youth was spent on the farm in Alabama until he was twelve years of age, when his grandparents came to Arkansas and settled in Calhoun County, and bought a farm in Jackson Township. The educational advantages of our subject and his brother, John, were very limited. They assisted each other, and, after a time, began to teach school; one would teach while the other worked the farm. In 1883 John began the study of medicine, and in 1884 he went to Cleveland County, where he placed himself under the instruction of Dr. Tims, a cousin. He had been there only about three months when he was taken sick with typhoid fever, and died December 18, 1884. He was a young man of great promise, ambitious to secure an education and secure a position in the world. His adoption of the profession of medicine was his own choice, with the counsel of his brother, our subject, and his brilliant youth insured a successful future, which was frustrated by his early death. At the time of his grandfather's death, the old place was encumbered, and they soon made arrangements to purchase the place, on which our subject now resides - a farm of 120 acres, forty of which are under cultivation. Our subject has put in all improvements, erected a good double house and outbuildings, did the clearing, and now has as good a farm as that section affords, and is still engaged in making further clearing. He is engaged in general farming, striving to raise everything that he needs for home consumption. He averages one-half bale of cotton to the acre, and, say, fifteen bushels of corn. In connection with his farming he still teaches school. Mr. Sikes is unmarried, and his housekeeping is attended to by an aunt, Miss Harriet Talbot, who came to Arkansas with her parents, and has always made the house of our subject her home. This sketch of Mr. Sikes will serve as a good example to all young men, he being wholly self-made and educated. Mr. Sikes is a member of the County Wheel. He is somewhat active in politics, and votes with the Democratic party. Although not a church member, Mr. Sikes is an earnest worker in all church as well as school work.[INDEX]


Stanley B. Stroud, well known in agricultural circles, is a native of Chambers County, Alabama, and was born on June 22, 1847. He was the youngest of ten children born to his parents, James and Jane (Post) Stroud, natives of Georgia, born in 1802 and 1807, respectively. The father emigrated to Calhoun County, Arkansas from Alabama in 1848 and entered land, and there he passed his life, dying in 1881, his wife having previously died on February 13, 1875. He was the son of Philip Stroud, born in Virginia, of English descent, who was a soldier in the Revolutionary War. Stanley B. Stroud was brought to this county by his parents while in his infancy, and here he attained his growth, and obtained a good common school education. He remained at home until he attained his majority, and then he commenced life on his own responsibility by engaging in farming. He was married in 1882 to Miss Camella Tims, a native of Alabama, born on January 5, 18060, the daughter of Rema and Caroline (Talbot) Tims. Her paternal grandfather served in the Revolutionary War, and her maternal grandfather also served in the patriot army, with the rank of general. Her mother, Caroline Times, was a daughter of Green B. Talbot, who was born in Oglethorpe County, Georgia, in 1791, and died in Arkansas in 1875, whither he had emigrated about 1870. He married Miss Mary Anthony, a native of Jasper County, Georgia, born in 1795, the daughter of James and Ann (Tate) Anthony; and she departed this life in this county in 1885. Mrs. Stroud was one of five children born to her parents, only three of whom are now living. Her marriage with Mr. Stroud was blessed in the birth of four children: James B., Rema B., Pearl and an infant. Mr. Stroud has been reasonably successful in life, and now owns 200 acres of valuable land, with about sixty acres under cultivation, lying about ten miles north of the county seat, and about three miles south of Fordyce, in Moro Township, in Calhoun County. His wife is a member of the Missionary Baptist Church and in politics he affiliates with the Democratic party.[INDEX]


George Henry Thompson is prominent among the successful agriculturists of the county, and among those deserving special recognition for their long residence in this county, being a member of on eof the earlier families. His parents, Daniel A. and Matilda E. Thompson, natives of Tennessee and Alabama, respectively, came to Arkansas in 1850, settling in Calhoun County, where they continued to live until the death of the mother, about 1879. The father is at present living in Grayson County, Texas. He was engaged in the War of 1836; he also enlisted in the late war in 1861, and served about one year. The subject of this sketch was born December 15, 1844, in Jackson County, Alabama and was principally reared in Ouachita County, Arkansas, to which place his parents moved in 1853, when our subject was but nine years of age. He received a limited education at the common country schools, and began doing for himself at the age of twenty one, choosing as his occupation in life, farming. He now owns 140 acres of good land, forty of which are under an excellent state of cultivation and always raises good crops. He was married, October 3, 1866, to Miss Isabella H. Means, a daughter of Andrew and Elizabeth H. Means, who moved from St. Clair County, Alabama and settled in Calhoun county in 1853. Mr. Thompson enlisted as private in the late war, in 1862, in Company G, Third Arkansas Cavalry, under Capt. Winburn, and served under him for eighteen months, when Capt. Winburn was killed. His place was taken by Capt. Dumar, under whom he served until the close of the war. Mr. Thompson participated in the battles of Chickamauga and Atlanta, Georgia. In the latter battle he was slightly wounded in the body and was sent to the hospital for a short time, but after recovering went back to his old command and was in the battle at Thompson Station; also the battle of Savannah, Georgia. Mr. Thompson is a member of the Farmers' Union, also of the State Grange. He is a staunch Democrat, but does not take an active part in politics. Both Mr. and Mrs. Thompson are members of the Missionary Baptist Church, the former joining in 1867, and the latter at the age of twelve. Mr. Thompson takes a deep interest in the welfare of his county, is a good farmer, and is a general favorite with his neighbors.[INDEX]


Colonel T. A. Thornton is a prominent planter of Calhoun County, and was born in Alabama in 1836, the third in a family of seven children born to W. S. and Nancy (Moor) Thornton. October 5, 1844, his father came to Arkansas and settled at Chambersville, and was about the third settler in the county. They went west to the end of the road, where they made their settlement in this county. Here he began farming by settling on a tract of about 300 acres. He erected a home and made improvements, and in about 1847 or 1848, he started a store on his own place. This was the first store in Calhoun County. He lived there until 1852, when he sold out and went to Camden, where he engaged in merchandising, until 18060, when he sold out and moved to Hampton, Calhoun County. Here he started an extensive store, and continued in this business until the outbreak of the war. He then retired from business until after the war, when he engaged with a firm in New Orleans to sell goods through the county; was soon after taken sick and died, November 7, 1867. His death closed an active business career. As an early settler and pioneer he is well remembered throughout this section. The mother died during the war, in 1863. Our subject was reared on the farm, receiving his education at the common schools and at home. At the outbreak of the war, he assisted in raising a company in this county, and was elected first lieutenant of the "Esco Pets," Capt. Joe McCullough was ordered to the northwestern part of the State, and participated in the battle of Pea Ridge. He was then transferred to the Eastern Division and was in most of the battles there, from Shiloh to Sherman's campaign. At Richmond, Kentucky, they captured five times as many prisoners as the number of their men. He was captured at Nashville, but soon made his escape. At the close of the war, he came back home, and in October, 1865, married Miss Mattie Pickett, daughter of W. J. Pickett. He now bought a farm and began farming. From time to time, he has owned a farm of 300 acres, two miles west of town, 150 acres under cultivation. He makes a specialty of cotton, averaging one half bale to the acre. He has a good orchard, and one of the best farms in this section. To the union of our subject and his wife have been born eleven children, four of whom are dead, viz: William Frederic, Walter H., Ever, Jimmie, Velma, Vera and Vivian; and Mary, Virgie, Charley and Harris, who are dead. Mr. Thornton is a member of the Wheel, and an active and enterprising citizen.[INDEX]


J. T. O. Tibbits. Among the many enterprising and successful farmers of Dallas Township is Mr. Tibbits. He was born in Georgia in 1837, the second in a family of eight children born to Job W. and Sarah (Somerville) Tibbits. His father followed farming in Georgia until 1858, when he came to Arkansas, and settled in Calhoun County, Dallas Township. Here he entered 400 acres, all wild, uncultivated land, and at once commenced clearing and improving it. He died in 1862, after making good improvements. The mother wen to Louisiana, where she became ill; her son, our subject brought her to his home, where she died in 1873. Our subject was reared to farm labor, and attended school but very little. He came to Arkansas with his father. At the outbreak of the war he enlisted in Company K, Fourth Arkansas Infantry, and was in the battle of Pea Ridge, Arkansas. He was sick for some six months, mostly in the hospital at Memphis; he joined the regiment at West Point, Mississippi, and was in the battles of Richmond, Kentucky, Murfreesboro, and down through the Georgia campaign. He surrendered with General Johnson at Greensboro, North Carolina. He was wounded at the battle of Chickamauga, at Peach Tree, Georgia, and again while on his way to meet a cavalry raid at Lovejoy Station. July 3, 1865, he returned home, after making a short visit to friends in Georgia, and began farming on his father's farm; he was almost destitute on his arrival in Arkansas. In 1867 he married Mrs. Martha L. Cross. In 1886 he purchased his present farm of eighty acres, to which he has since added 900 acres, and has 200 acres under cultivation. Here he does general farming, and raises all his own provisions, and is engaged quite extensively in stock-raising. He has not been active, politically, and votes with the Democratic party. He is an earnest advocate of public schools, and has served as school director for some years. To the union of Mr. and Mrs. Tibbits have been born nine children, one of which died in infancy, viz: Henry Greston, Ellen Frances, John Morgan (deceased), Joe Johnston, Mollie Bell, Laura Jennie, Hattie Pearl and Price Etta. Mr. Tibbits is a member of Wheel No. 1227, and is one of the active and enterprising citizens of the county.[INDEX][NEXT PAGE]