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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Columbia County, Arkansas published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1890.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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J. A. Thomas has been worthily identified with the farming interests of Columbia County, Ark., from his earliest youth, for when not occupied with attending the common schools near his home, he was engaged in farm labor, being initiated into its mysteries by his father, A. B. Thomas, a sketch of whom appears in this work. J. A. Thomas was born April 2, 1862, in this county, and at the age of eighteen years commenced life for himself as a tiller of the soil on his own land. He has since devoted his attention to this calling and stock raising and trading, and has been successful far beyond his expectations, being now the owner of 410 acres, with sixty acres under cultivation, all of which he has accumulated since starting out in search of Dame Fortune for himself. In 1889 he was engaged in the sawmill business, but sold out his interest soon after, and his attention has since been given to agriculture as above stated. He is interested in the raising of stock, and finds a profitable source of revenue in the propagation of mules. He is a wide awake and intelligent young man, and being strictly honest in all his dealings he gives every promise of becoming wealthy. He was married in 1883, to Miss Sarah W. Newton, a daughter of William and Sarah Newton, residents of this State, but natives of Georgia. Mrs. Thomas was born in this county, in 1864, and her union with Mr. Thomas has resulted in the birth of four children: Mary C , Hattie A., Jennie, and one unnamed. Mr. Thomas is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and his wife is a Baptist.

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This family biography is one of 106 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Columbia County, Arkansas published in 1890.  For the complete description, click here: Columbia County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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