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Below is a family biography included in The History of Polk County, Missouri 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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Elwood Smith Odor, M. D., of Bolivar and vicinity, was born in Culpeper County, Va., October 11, 1818, and is the son of Elwoodand Nancy (Wigfield) Odor. The father was a farmer by occupation, and had been a soldier in the War of 1812. In 1823 he went on a collecting tour, and had obtained a large sum of money, for which, it is supposed, he was killed, as nothing was ever heard of him. The family subsequently, in 1830, moved to Coshocton County, Ohio, where the mother died in 1861, at the age of eighty years. She was a member of the Baptist Church. In their family were seven children, four sons and three daughters, and Dr. Odor is the only one now living. He was reared to farm life, and received his education in the common schools, and also by individual study. Having farmed until thirty years of age, he began to read medicine on account of his poor health. After spending some time in a private institution, he began to practice, and in 1852-53 he took a course of lectures at the Eclectic Medical Institute, Cincinnati, Ohio. He then practiced in Ohio until 1861, when he moved to Illinois. In December, 1867, he came to Bolivar, and has enjoyed a good practice since. April 7, 1842, he married Miss Martha McMorris, a native of Virginia, and to them were born ten children, six living: Celia, Joseph T.; William S., a graduate of the American Medical College, St. Louis, and associated with his father in the practice; Ottoman C, Otho G. and John M. Dr. Odor has practiced his profession for thirty-eight years, and for twenty-one years in this county, and has been very successful. He is a Republican in politics, and he and wife are members of the Baptist Church.

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This family biography is one of 132 biographies included in The History of Polk County, Missouri published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Polk County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

To view additional Polk County, Missouri family biographies, click here

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