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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Pulaski County, Arkansas published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1889.  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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Dr. A. D. Thomas, of the Thomas Cotton Press Works, was born and spent the earlier years of his life in New York State, emigrating to Chicago in 1856, where he taught in the public schools and studied medicine. At the breaking out of the war he was one of the first to enlist, and rose to the rank of major-surgeon and was mustered out of service at Post Lewisburg, Ark., in June, 1865. Here he married and engaged in planting, milling and the drug business. He was elected to the State senate from the district of which his (Conway) county formed a part, and served with credit to his district and himself. In 1883 he turned his attention to inventing labor-saving cotton-handling machinery, the principal machine being the first successful self-packing cotton press ever made. The outgrowth of this invention, coupled with the energy and money of D. H. Thomas, is the present extensive brick factory, 50x250 feet, with boiler room extra, also extensive paint shop. The plant covers three acres of ground, and constitutes a regular manufacturing enterprise in Arkansas. D. H. Thomas, also a native New Yorker, came to Arkansas in the spring of 1865, on a visit to his brother and liking the county so well he has since remained here. He located at the same place, Lewisburg, where he also married, and has been engaged in nearly all kinds of honorable business. In 1879, Lewisburg being absorbed by Morrillton which was only one mile distant, he moved there and erected storehouses, and went into the handling of machinery of all kinds quite extensively. In 1885 he sold out and in 1886 came to Little Rock to engage with his brother in the manufacture of the cotton press. He has been very successful in all of his undertakings, and one of the foremost in any enterprise to which he gives his attention. They are among the leading manufacturers of Arkansas, and are genial, whole-souled gentlemen, whose business tact and sociability have secured for them a host of friends in their new home.

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This family biography is one of 156 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Pulaski County, Arkansas published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Pulaski County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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