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Below is a family biography included in the book, The History of Adair 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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David R. Pickens, a farmer and stock raiser, of Morrow Township, is a native of Sullivan County, Tenn., and was born August 25, 1832. He is a son of John and Nancy (Proffitt) Pickens. The father was of Irish descent, and was born in Greene County, Tenn., August 2, 1807. The mother was born in Sullivan County, August 22, 1807, and died November 18, 1853, and in October, 1854, the father married Mrs. Margaret Duncan. In 1855 he moved to Adair County, and located on Spring Creek, Morrow Township, sixteen miles northwest of Kirksville, where he remained until his death, September 24, 1867. He served four years as justice of the peace, of Morrow Township. His grandfather, Williams Pickens, was also a native of Sullivan County, Tenn., and a soldier in the War of 1812. He was a son of William and Mary Pickens, who were natives of Ireland. David R., our subject, was reared under the parental roof, and received a school education of not more than two years, when he was but a small boy. Most of his knowledge has been acquired by his own efforts since reaching mature years. He was first married July 14, 1853, to Miss Martha J. Bragg, and had four children: Amanda A. (widow of T. Smith), Landen B., Thomas J. and David M. Mrs. Pickens died April 3, 1874, and his second marriage occurred in October, 1877, to Mrs. Louisa Bolinger, a daughter of John Scobee, by whom he had one child, Martha Jane. His second wife died in October, 1878, and in December of the same year he married Miss Catherine Morelock. They have three children: Clark A., Lula May and Ora Lee. In 1855 he came to Adair County, and has since been a resident of Morrow Township, living upon his present farm since March, 1874. He has 190 acres in a good state of cultivation, and the old farm on which he first located. Farming has been his occupation. July 1, 1864, he enlisted in Company B, Thirty-ninth Missouri Volunteer Infantry, served one year, mostly in Missouri, reaching Nashville just too late to take part in the last engagement at that place. In 1876 he was elected justice of the peace, to which office he has been twice re-elected, thus occupying that office nearly six years. He is a Democrat, and cast his first presidential vote for Buchanan in 1856. He has belonged to the Masonic fraternity since 1854, and has been a member of the Missionary Baptist Church since 1852, to which church his first and last wife also belonged, his second wife being a member of the Christian Church. July 12, 1853, just previous to his first marriage, Mr. Pickens cradled one hundred dozen oats, and thirty-three years after, to a day, he cut eighty dozen by 3 o’clock.

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This family biography is one of 150 biographies included in the Adair County, Missouri portion of the book,  The History of Adair, Sullivan, Putnam, and Schuyler Counties, Missouri published in 1888 by Goodspeed Publishing Co.  For the complete description, click here: Adair County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Adair County, Missouri family biographies here: Adair County, Missouri Biographies

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