My Genealogy Hound

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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John Stewart Erwin was born at Sharon, Beaver Co., Penn., May 6, 1819, the son of Andrew and Mary Erwin. The former was a native of Greenbrier County, W. Va., who removed to Allegheny County, Penn., in 1817, in which county he passed the rest of his life (except about one year in Beaver County), mostly in farming, but resided in Allegheny City from 1829 until 1835, being the first street commissioner and the first street contractor in that city (then a borough). He died in Pittsburgh in 1847. His mother, Mary Stewart, was born near Pittsburgh, the daughter of John Stewart, an Irishman, who was one of the pioneers of Western Pennsylvania. He was living on his farm four miles from Pittsburgh at the time of the whisky rebellion. Our subject was educated mostly in Allegheny and Pittsburgh and graduated from De Quesne College in the latter city in 1845, intending to enter the ministry, but was by ill health compelled to abandon that intention. He was married, May 1, 1849, to Elizabeth, daughter of Hugh and Mary Wilson, of Allegheny City, and removed to Memphis, Tenn., where he engaged in the lumber business. While residing there he was a member of the board of aldermen, and of the school board. After the occupation of the Union army in June, 1863, he removed to a farm which he owned in Clinton County, Iowa, where he resided until 1870, when he removed to near Kirksville, where he has a fine farm of 200 acres. In 1877 he was elected county judge, being the first Democrat elected to office in Adair County after the war. He has been a regent of the State Normal School for about ten years. The following are his children who are living: William Delwarth and John Swaine, of Kinsley, Kas, in the lumber business; Joseph Pullen Erwin, Dodge City, Kas., in real estate business; Andrew Erwin, of Fergus Falls, Minn., member of the lumber firm of J. McCullogh & Co.; and Mary, widow of Samuel W. Anderson, late of Cameron, Mo. He and his wife have been members of the Presbyterian Church for nearly half a century. For twenty years he has been an elder, a position also held by his father and his grandfather, John S. Erwin.

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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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