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Below is a family biography included in The History of McDonald 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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Hon. Joseph C. Seabourn, one of the most prominent citizens of McDonald County, Mo., and a member of the firm of Smith & Seabourn, general merchants and dealers in agricultural implements and harness, at South West City, Mo., was born near Cleveland, Bradley Co., Tenn., on June 25, 1848. He is a son of Bradford Seabourn, who brought his family to McDonald County in 1858. The subject was reared at the home of his parents, and secured his education in the common schools. When the South rebelled against the Union he and his father remained loyal, and at the age of fifteen years he enlisted in the Federal army and served twenty-seven months, the most of which time he was in Battery K, Second Missouri Light Artillery. For three and one-half months he was in the State service as a member of the Seventh Missouri Cavalry, during which time they fought guerrillas most every day. Among other engagements Mr. Seabourn participated in the following: Osceola, Ark., Hickman, Ky., and Jefferson City. After hostilities between the North and South had ceased he went with his company to the Black Hills, on the Powder River expedition. After fighting the Indians six months and enduring many hardships he returned home. His oldest brother, Dallas, and their father had to leave McDonald County during the war. J. C. took the family to Lawrence County; his father had enlisted in the Union army early in the war, joining Company L, Sixth Kansas Cavalry, with which he served nearly three years. In the spring of 1866 Joseph C. and Dallas returned to McDonald County, and put in a crop, but the family did not return until the following fall. In September, 1866, Joseph C. Seabourn was shot in the right shoulder while resisting an old acquaintance and a rebel bushwacker and horse thief who was trying to rob him. This villain was Lorenzo Smith, a brother of Bill Smith, the noted bushwhacker. These two brothers subsequently stole horses and were making their way to Texas, when they were over­taken by a company of men who had followed them. As the law could do nothing with these ruffians, the company of citizens, who had organized themselves into a vigilance committee, lynched them. Mr. Seabourn engaged in his present business in 1883. The firm carry a stock of $4,000, exclusive of farm machinery. Their annual sales run from $16,000 to $20,000 cash. They carry a full line of everything usually found in a first-class general store, besides a large stock of ready made clothing and harness, the latter being made in South West City. On January 13, 1870, Mr. Seabourn was united in marriage with Mary J. Phillips, a daughter of Salvadore Phillips (deceased). Mrs. Seabourn was born in North Carolina, and is a devout member of the Christian Church. Mr. Seabourn is held in high esteem by his neighbors, who have honored him with several official positions. He served on the board of registration in 1869, as deputy sheriff for six years, and as sheriff and collector for four years. He was elected to represent the eighteenth senatorial district of the State of Missouri in 1886. He is a Republican, and ran several hundred votes ahead of his ticket both in the county and district. He is a member of the G. A. R. He was nominated for lieutenant-governor by the Union Labor Convention held in Sedalia in June, 1888, but declined to desert his post in the Senate without the consent of his constituents.

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This family biography is one of 82 biographies included in The History of McDonald County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: McDonald County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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