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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Drew 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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Charles L. Pickens, farmer, Selma, Ark. This is another old and very prominent settler of Drew County, and as such is respected and esteemed by all acquainted with him. Mr. Pickens was originally from Fayette County, Tenn., where his birth occurred on December 19, 1829, and is the son of Israel Sidney and Sally (Rutledge) Pickens, natives of South Carolina, and the grandson of Andrew and Margaret (Gillashy) Pickens. Grandfather Pickens was a native of Ireland and came to this country when a boy. He held the position of adjutant-general under his brother, Brig. Gen. Joseph Pickens, in the Revolutionary War, and died when about ninety-three years of age. The grandmother, Margaret Gillashy, was a native of Scotland, and emigrated to this country at an early day. Israel Pickens was a minister in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and one of the pioneers of Fayette County, Tenn., settling there in 1827. He died there in 1877 at about the age of seventy-eight years. His wife, Sally (Rutledge) Pickens, was born in South Carolina in 1800, and was the daughter of Charles and Sally (Hamilton) Rutledge. The mother of our subject died in 1880, and of the eight children born to her marriage three are now living: Sarah Catherine (widow of Moses McKinley), Susan A. (widow of J. S. Rodgers), and Charles L. The latter received a fair education, and at the age of nineteen years commenced teaching school. Three years later he engaged in merchandising in his native county, but in 1860 he sold out and came to Arkansas, located in Monticello, where he continued his former occupation until the breaking out of the war. In 1862 he enlisted in Col. Portlock’s regiment, of which he was quartermaster. His regiment was captured at Arkansas Post, but he not being in the battle, was not captured. He was afterward transferred to Little Rock, and served as pay and post quartermaster until the close of the war. Since then he has been engaged in farming, and settled on his present farm in 1885. This consists of 280 acres of land, of which 100 acres are under cultivation. His principal crops are cotton, and he is also engaged in stock-raising on a small scale. He was married in March, 1858, to Miss Anna Eliza Shorter, a native of Giles County, Tenn., born in 1837, and the daughter of Henry and Mary A. (McNairy) Shorter, natives of North Carolina. To Mr. and Mrs. Pickens have been born nine children, seven of whom are living: Charles Henry (married and a farmer of Drew County), Anna (deceased), Lillian S. (at home), Edward S. (at home), Ada (Mrs. Barnett of this county), Olivia (Mrs. Appleberry, of Desha County), May, Shorter, and Annie (deceased). Mr. Pickens is a member of the Masonic fraternity, is also a member of the County Wheel, and was at one time a member of the I. O. O. F. He is a Democrat in politics, one of the prominent men of Drew County, and one of the best known farmers in the State.

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This family biography is one of 83 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Drew County, Arkansas published in 1890.  For the complete description, click here: Drew County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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