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Below is a family biography from the book,  The History of Crawford County, Arkansas 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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John M. Allen, farmer, was born in the county in 1845, and is the oldest son of William C. and Nancy (Lewes) Allen. The father was born in Roane County, Tenn., in June, 1806 and in 11832 immigrated to Washington County, Ark., by water, finally coming to Crawford County, and settling at Van Buren, when there was but one house in the place. In 1842 he married Nancy Lewis, who was born in Clark County, Ark., in 1821, and is a daughter of Hugh and Nancy Lewis, early settlers of Arkansas and of English and German descent, respectively. Mr. Lewis was a farmer by occupation and died in 1839. His wife died ten years previous. William C. Allen moved to Crawford County in 1843, and there passed the remainder of his life engaged in farming. To himself and wife seven children were born: Celia E. White (of this township), John M., James S. (of Van Buren), Sarah J. (of this township), David F., Hugh L. and Mary Allen. The last three named are deceased. Mr. Allen died in 1881, and his wife in 1874. The grandfather, John Allen, was a native of Virginia, served in the War of 1812 and died about 1818. His wife, Celia (Oliver) Allen, was born in Tennessee, and died about 1810. On account of the unsettled state of the country during the war, our subject did not receive much of an education, and in 1870 began life for himself by farming, having been discharged from the army June 10, 1865. He enlisted in 1864, in Company F, under Capt. Joseph Crouch, Bryant’s regiment, and was paroled by the Federal authorities. In 1870 he married Miss Catherine White, who was born in Germany in 1843, and is a daughter of Henry and Maria (Buschmann) White, who were born in Germany in 1810 and 1808, and died in 1863 and 1862, respectively. Mr. White was a farmer by occupation, and upon coming to America proceeded at once to Van Buren and located in this county. To Mr. and Mrs. Allen four children have been born: Nannie E., William Walter, Caroline L. and James W. Mr. Allen is a well-to-do man, and has served three terms as school director. He has seventy-five acres of good land, thirty-five acres of which he cultivates. His farm is well improved, and he lives in a comfortable frame dwelling. He belongs to the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and is a member of the Masonic fraternity. In politics he is a Democrat, and his first presidential vote was cast for Seymour, in 1868.

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This family biography is one of 222 biographies included in The History of Crawford County, Arkansas published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Crawford County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Crawford County, Arkansas family biographies here: Crawford County, Arkansas

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