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Below is a family biography included in The History of Lawrence County, Missouri published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1888.  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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Enoch P. Oliver, whose name is familiar in the county as one of the successful farmers of Greene Township, was born in Davidson County, Tenn., June, 1834, son of John C. and S. J. Oliver, who were natives of North Carolina and Tennessee, respectively. The father was born in 1809, and when eight years of age he came with his parents to Tennessee. They came with a colony of about 300 people, in wagons, on foot and on pack-horses. They located in Davidson County, Tenn., twelve miles east of Nashville, where they lived for a number of years; then moved to Illinois and settled five miles east of Alton, Madison County, where they rented land for several years. Here John C. Oliver purchased land, and here he died in 1879. He was a man of good education, having secured the same by his own efforts. To him and wife were born seven children, four now living. Two died in infancy, and Amanda died at the age of eighteen years. Those now living are Enoch P., Willia James, Sarah and Isaac. The mother of these children died in the winter of 1853. Enoch F. was about six months old when his parents removed to Illinois, where he grew up. His educational advantages were rather limited, but he availed himself of all the opportunities the county afforded. He left Illinois in 1859 and moved to Southwest Missouri, where he rented land in Greene Township for eleven years. He then came to his present property in 1869. This consists of 220 acres of land, 180 under cultivation. He served in the Missouri State Militia until the spring of 1864, when he re-enlisted in the Fifteenth Missouri Cavalry, and served until the close of the war. Previous to his last enlistment he was commissioned captain of the Home Guards, and served in that capacity for about a year. April 17, 1862, he married Miss Rebecca Ann Robinson, a native of Tennessee, the daughter of H. P. Robinson, born April 15, 1843, and by this union were born seven children: Alice A., wife of John Simmons; Lenora C., wife of John Huff; Sylvester G., Hilton M., Addie F., Effie N. and Homer D. The mother of these children died October 29, 1879, and Mr. Oliver then married Miss Amanda E. Cherry, a native of Hardin County, Tenn., born in 1850. To this marriage were born three children, one deceased. Those living are named Burton F. and Sadie E. In 1886 Mr. Oliver went to Sarcoxie, to give his children better educational advantages, and remained there one and one-half years. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and he and wife are members of the Christian Church.

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This family biography is one of 272 biographies included in The History of Lawrence County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: Lawrence County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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