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Below is a family biography included in The History of Maries 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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Hon. William Hearst Bowles, M. D., a practicing physician and surgeon of Jefferson Township, Maries Co., Mo., since 1851, was born in St. Louis County, Mo., in 1827, and is a son of Judge Caleb and Mary (Hearst) Bowles, natives, respectively, of Virginia and South Carolina. Caleb Bowles was a well-to-do and successful farmer, of English descent, and was first married in Kentucky, before his removal to Missouri, where he located in St. Louis County, and subsequently married the mother of our subject; he was serving as judge of the St. Louis County Court at the time of his death, which occurred at the old Green Tree Tavern, then the best hotel in St. Louis, in 1836. He has two children by his first wife living in St. Louis, one of them nearly eighty years old. The paternal grandfather of our subject was Anderson Bowles, a native of Virginia. Mrs. Mary Bowles died about two years after her husband; she was a daughter of William G. Hearst, of Scotch descent, who removed from South Carolina to Missouri in 1808. William H. Bowles obtained his education at the common schools and at Desper’s College, St. Louis County, Mo., and then began the study of medicine under Dr. Charles Halliday, in St. Louis County, graduating from what was then known as McDowell’s Medical College, St. Louis, in 1851. The same year he began the practice of his chosen profession in Lane’s Prairie, then in Osage (since changed to Maries) County, where he has ever since been actively engaged, and has built up a large and lucrative practice, proving him self one of the most successful and efficient physicians of Southeastern Missouri. His practice extends over Maries, Osage, Cole, Miller, Phelps, Crawford and Gasconade Counties, and what was formerly his exclusive territory now supports not less than thirty physicians. He is probably the oldest practitioner of Maries County, and is one of its wealthiest citizens, owning over 5,000 acres of land, situated in different counties, as well as mining interests in California. He has a magnificent home at Lane’s Prairie, and devotes considerable attention and takes great interest in stock-raising. In 1868 Dr. Bowles represented Maries County in the State Legislature, discharging his duties with much credit. He is a man of more than ordinary ability and endurance, and though well along in years is still active and enterprising. He is a Democrat in politics, and for over thirty years has been a member of the A. F. & A. M., now a charter member of St. James’ Lodge. He was first married in 1852 to Augusta Glanville, of St. Louis County, a daughter of an itinerant Methodist minister, who died in St. Louis County. Mrs. Augusta Sophia Bowles died in 1857, leaving two children. In 1866 Mr. Bowles married Mrs. Louisa Greatwood Kinsey, widow of Thomas J. Kinsey, who was a wealthy merchant of Knobview, Crawford Co., Mo., and died in 1865. Mrs. Kinsey was born in England, and was a daughter of William Bray; she died in 1868, the mother of one child, a daughter, by her first marriage, Miss Minnie, now living, and two children by her last husband, neither of whom is now living. Dr. Bowles next married in 1887 Elizabeth Ella, daughter of Judge Matthew William and Margaret Ann Kinsey, the former born in New Jersey in 1821, and the latter a native of Gasconade County, Mo. Mr. Kinsey removed with his parents to St. Louis County, Mo., in 1834, and after his marriage located in Maries County, where he served six years as county judge, and he and wife still live; his father was Thomas Kinsey, a native of Wales, who came to the United States in 1821, and died in Maries County, Mo., in 1860. Mrs. Elizabeth Bowles is a native of Maries County, and is the mother of five children, four of whom survive.

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This family biography is one of 37 biographies included in The History of Maries County, Missouri published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Maries County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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