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Below is a family biography included in The History of Pulaski 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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James A. Bradford, a prosperous farmer of Piney Township, is a Phelps County Missourian, born in 1848, and is a son of Isaac and Frances M. (Vance) Bradford. The father was born in Kentucky in 1805, and in 1825 immigrated to what is now Phelps County, Mo., where he was engaged in farming. He was married the same year to Martha Duncan, but she died November 30, 1839, and November 19 of the following year he wedded Miss Vance. The latter lady bore him six children, four of whom are living. James A. Bradford, their fourth child, made his home with his parents until 1872, when he was married to Miss Bettie C. Lenox, who was a daughter of Hamilton and Maria Lenox, and was born in Phelps County, Mo., in 1850, and bore one child, Ada L. Mr. Bradford married his second wife in 1879. Her maiden name was Martha W. Root, and she was born in Phelps County, Mo., in 1855. They are the parents of four living children: Sally M., Marion E., Lucy E., and Clara E. Mary L. is deceased. Mrs. Bradford is a daughter of Martin and Lucy L. Root, who were born in Kentucky and Ohio, respectively. In 1881 Mr. Bradford settled on his present farm of 217 acres, seventy acres of which are under cultivation. He is a Democrat in politics, and in 1874 was elected justice of the peace of Cold Spring Township, Phelps Co., Mo., but declined to serve. He is also a member of the County Wheel. His mother is a daughter of Samuel and Lucy (Rutt) Vance, who were born in 1876 and 1873, and died in 1841 and 1843, respectively, and is yet living, and resides with her children. The paternal grandparents, Adam and Frances (Neely) Bradford, came to Missouri in 1825, and died in 1849 and 1876, respectively. The latter’s father and grandfather were killed by the Indians in Tennessee. The great-grandfather, Andrew Vance, was a native of Virginia, and was a soldier in the Revolutionary War.

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This family biography is one of 80 biographies included in The History of Pulaski County, Missouri published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Pulaski County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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