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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Hempstead 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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W. A. Briant, M. D., a member of the medical fraternity, practicing at Fulton, Hempstead County, Ark., was born April 9, 1862, in Columbia County, Ark., being a son of W. E. and Mary A. (Bayless) Briant, natives of Alabama and Arkansas, respectively. The father was a child of five or six years when his parents brought him to Columbia County, Ark., and he remained in that county until 1875, when he moved to Hope, where he entered into mercantile pursuits, which he continued very successfully, doing an annual business of $150,000. Mr. Briant, Sr., passed from life at Falcon, Nevada County, Ark., his wife dying at Hope, Hempstead County. When the late war broke out, Mr. Briant was one of the first to offer his services to the Confederacy. He enlisted in an Arkansas regiment of cavalry, and participated in many hard-fought battles and skirmishes, serving his cause faithfully until the close of the war, when he returned to his home. He passed from life at Hope, Ark., in 1885, while still comparatively young, being only in his forty-sixth year, leaving a widow who still survives. She is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, as was her husband. During his life he was an official member of that body, and always took an active interest in the cause of religion, as he did in all things tending to the welfare of society in general. In his political views, he was Democratically inclined, and socially he was a Mason. Mr. and Mrs. Briant were the parents of nine children, seven still surviving, and the subject of this sketch being the eldest. He was reared to manhood in his native State, receiving a good literary education in the schools of Hope, Ark., supplemented by a three years’ term at the State University at Fayetteville. In 1881 he commenced the study of medicine at the Missouri Medical College of St Louis, from which institution he was graduated in 1883, immediately after which he entered upon the practice of his profession at Hope, in connection with Dr. G. H. Andrews, with whom he continued for five years. In 1888 he came to Fulton, and in December of that year formed a partnership with Dr. H. L. B. Shers in the practice of medicine and drug business, and both being well educated, ambitious young men, they have succeeded remarkably well, and have built up a large and growing practice, and although still young in years, they occupy no inconsiderable place in the medical world. In 1886 Dr. Briant became surgeon for the Iron Mountain Railroad, which position he still holds. On March 30, 1887, he was united in matrimonial bonds to Miss Dee, daughter of Edward Culley, of Rondo, Ark., and one little daughter has been given to them. They are both worthy members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Dr. Briant is a Democrat in his political views, and while a resident of Hope, served as a member of the city council and the board of health.


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This family biography is one of 131 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Hempstead County, Arkansas published in 1890.  For the complete description, click here: Hempstead County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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