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John M. Allen

John M. Allen, president of the Stoddard County Agricultural Wheel, and a prominent citizen of the county, now residing in Castor Township, was born in Humphreys County, Tenn., in 1834, and is the son of James and Mary (Blessingim) Allen, natives of Virginia. The father moved to Tennessee, where he lived until his son, John M., was six years of age, when he moved to Livingston County, Ky., and from there to Shelby county, Tenn., or to the city of Memphis, and finally to Fulton County, Ky., where he died at the age of fifty. He was a farmer by occupation, and also followed the profession of school teaching. He was in the War of 1812, was in the battle of New Orleans, and shortly after this was married. His wife was a member of the Baptist Church. She died in Stoddard County, Mo., in 1887, at the age of eighty-five. To their union were born seven daughters and five sons, three sons and three daughters now living. John M. Allen is the seventh of these children. He began for himself after the death of his father by working for wages. In 1855 he married Miss Malinda Ladd, a native of Stoddard County, Mo., born in 1840, and the daughter of Ransom Ladd. To this marriage were born six children: Mary Annie, William L., George W. and Robert P., living. And two deceased, named John N. and Samuel M. Shortly after the death of the father of our subject, the family moved to Stoddard County, and here John M. after his marriage began to farm. Afterward, in connection with farming, he was engaged in merchandising at Bloomfield. This was in 1861. In 1862 he enlisted in the State militia, Union army, and served, off and on, until the surrender. In 1864 he was elected assessor of the county, and served two years, but also filled the office of Constable of Castor Township at the same time. In 1808 he sold goods at Kennett, Dunklin County, and at the same time served as postmaster, being the first postmaster after the war at that place. In 1869 he came to his present place of residence, and there he has resided ever since. He purchased forty acres in the first place, and to this has added the balance of 142. Mr. Allen is a member of the Masonic fraternity, also the I.O.O.F., and was elected president of the Wheel in the spring of 1887. He is a Republican in his political views, and has been district school clerk for sixteen years, and has also held many minor offices. Mrs. Allen is a member of Methodist Episcopal Church.


Thomas A. Arnold

Thomas A. Arnold, farmer, Essex Post office, was born in Middle Tennessee, in 1836, and is the son of Davis and Martha (Pucket) Arnold, who lived in Tennessee. The former carried on farming until he joined the army, after which he resumed farming until he died, leaving eight children, seven living: Marian, James, Harriet, Thomas A., Richard, Columbus and Martha, all married and living in Tennessee and Kentucky. Thomas A. left his home where about twenty years old and located in Henry County, Tenn., but in 1860 he came to Stoddard County, Mo., and settled about three miles southeast of Essex, until 1865. Returning to Tennessee, he only remained three years and again came to Stoddard County, locating about one mile from Essex, where he lived until purchasing his present home in 1876, a farm of about eighty acres of land, with some eighteen acres cleared and in cultivation. Mr. Arnold has been twice married; first, in 1858, to Catherine Langford and they had nine children, five of whom are living: William T., Annie E. (married to William Gregory), Nancy E. (married to J.A. Barker), Effie J. and James. Mrs. Arnold dying in 1876, he married in 1877, Nancy Devine, and they have had five children, three living, viz: Benjamin F., Clara B. and Albert. Mr. Arnold is a member of the Masonic and Wheeler's lodges. Mrs. Arnold belongs to the Baptist Church.


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