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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Dallas County, Arkansas published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1890.  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 W. Barrett, farmer and stock-raiser, Bearden, Ark. Among the people of Dallas County the name that heads this sketch is by no means an unfamiliar one, for many years he has been actively and successfully engaged in farming and stock-raising in this county. Mr. Barrett was born in Clark County, Ga., in 1840, and is the son of James W. and Mary A. (Prayer) Barrett, born in Blount County, Tenn., in 1808, and Clark County, Ga., in 1812, respectively. The father went to Clark County, Ga., when a young man, was married there about 1835, and there resided until 1857, when they moved to Dallas County, Ark. They lived one year near Princeton, and then settled on the property where the subject of this sketch now lives. There the father died in August, 1859, and the mother died in August, 1889. Both were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Barrett was county and probate judge of Clark County, Ga., a number of years, and socially was a member of the A. F. & A. M. The maternal grandfather, Peter Pruyer, was a native of the Old Dominion and died in Clark County, Ga., before our subject was born. The latter, the third of six sons and four daughters, two sons and three daughters now living, received a good English education, and in May, 1862, he joined Company E, First Trans-Mississippi Infantry. He operated in Arkansas, was in the fight at Helena, and was wounded three times at that place. He was over a large part of Arkansas, and was on detached service during the battle of Prairie Grove. He was in a number of battles and many severe skirmishes. He was discharged at Camden, Ark., in May. 1865, and returned to his home, where he engaged in tilling the soil. He was married in August, 1865, to Miss Sarah J. Marshall, a native of Alabama, born in 1842, and the daughter of Franklin and Elizabeth A. Marshall, who were born and married in Virginia, and who emigrated to Alabama some years later. They moved to Dallas County. Ark., about 1855, and Mr. Marshall died there the same year. Mrs. Marshall died in Calhoun County, in 1879. She was a member of the Missionary Baptist Church. To Mr. and Mrs. Barrett were born five children—three sons and two daughters. For three years after the war Mr. Barrett lived on his present farm, and then removed to Calhoun County, where he remained until December, 1881, and then returned to his present farm, on which his father settled when coming to Dallas County thirty-one years ago. Mr. Barrett now has 1,700 acres of land, and has about 200 acres under cultivation. He raises considerable stock, and is one of the leading farmers of the county. From 1876 to 1880 he was justice of the peace in Calhoun County, and discharged the duties of that office in a highly creditable manner. Politically a Democrat, his first presidential vote was cast for H. Seymour in 1868. He is a member of the K. of H., Fordyce Lodge No. 3368. He had three brothers in the Confederate army: Peter P. enlisted in the Third Arkansas Cavalry and was killed in Cherokee County, N. C, in 1864; William C. enlisted in the Fourth Arkansas Infantry, Company H. and died at home in December, 1881, and Charles T., who joined the Twelfth Arkansas Infantry, was captured at Island No. 10 and died at Camp Douglas, Ill., after an imprisonment of twelve months.

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This family biography is one of 55 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Dallas County, Arkansas published in 1890.  For the complete description, click here: Dallas County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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