My Genealogy Hound

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.

* * * *

James A. Sewell is the sheriff of Columbia County, Ark., and no more capable and trusty man for the position could be found. His birth occurred in Madison County, Tenn., in 1838, he being the seventh of nine children born to Jacob and Mary (Trousdale) Sewell, natives of North Carolina and Tennessee, respectively. The father, who was a farmer, came to Tennessee about 1820, and settled down to tilling the soil, an occupation he followed until his death, which occurred in 1862, his widow passing from life in 1889, at the age of eighty-eight years. Only four of their children are now living: John P. (who is a planter of Texas), M. E. (wife of J. A. Ragsdale, of Union County, Ark.), V. E. (wife of G. W. Eubanks, of Columbia County, Ark), and James A. The latter was educated in this county, whither his father had moved in 1844, and his youth was spent in the monotonous duties of farm life, and in acquiring a practical education in the common schools. Owing to the fact that he possessed a fine intellect, and energy enough to apply himself assiduously to his duties he has become one of the most successful and best-informed businessmen within the limits of this county. At the age of twenty-two years he joined Company K of the Nineteenth Arkansas Infantry as a private, and served on the east side of the Mississippi River until 1864, participating in the battles of Farmington, Iuka, Corinth, Port Gibson, Baker’s Creek, and numerous skirmishes. At the siege of Vicksburg he was taken prisoner, but at the end of three months was paroled and returned home. He was afterward exchanged, and in 1864 joined Gen. Dockery’s brigade of Arkansas Cavalry, and served in the West during the remainder of the war. He then was at Mark’s Mill and Prairie Dehand. During the war he was twice wounded, first at Corinth by a minie-ball in the right hip, and the next time at Baker’s Creek in the right shoulder. He surrendered at Marshall, Tex., in May, 1865, returned home at once, and resumed farming, but gave up his work when elected county sheriff in 1888. His first farming was done on the old homestead, for he was completely broken up, financially, but by 1879 he had accumulated sufficient means to purchase 180 acres of land, sixty of which he had nicely improved, but has since sold. He was married in 1875 to Miss M. V. Lovett, of Brazos County, Tex., she being a daughter of John F. and Betsey May Lovett, of Arkansas. Mr. and Mrs. Sewell have a family of four children: R. E., Durwood, Spead and Pico. Mr. and Mrs. Sewell are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and he is a member of the A. F. & A. M., Columbia Lodge No. 82.

* * * *

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

To view additional Columbia County, Arkansas family biographies, click here

Use the links at the top right of this page to search or browse thousands of other family biographies.