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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Hot Spring 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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Enoch H. Vance, Jr., one of the leading lawyers of Hot Spring County, has been a resident of this State since a mere child. He was born in Pontotoc County, Miss., in 1848, and was the son of Enoch H. and Lucinda (Massey) Vance, natives of Alabama and Mississippi, respectively. Mr. Vance, Sr., commenced life on his own account when a small boy. His mother having died when he was a child, and his father marrying again, he left home owing to disagreement between himself and his stepmother. Starting out when twelve years of age, on foot and without money, he was finally given work in a printing-office, where he learned the printer’s trade. He then established a paper at Aberdeen, Ala., and after conducting it for a number of years went to Mississippi, in which State he was married. He lived there until in the 50’s, then moved to Arkansas, and entered land in Saline County, and afterward located at Pine Bluff, purchasing a paper there known as the True Democrat, which he edited until 1859. Mr. Vance then saw that, by reason of his political views, he could not publish his paper, he being a Republican and strongly opposed to slavery. So, moving to his farm in Saline County, he lived there until the war broke out, when, in company with William Murry, he crossed the Mason and Dixon line at Springfield, Mo., and there enlisted in the Eighth Missouri Cavalry, in the Federal service, and served throughout the war. He was captured during the struggle and taken to Little Rock, where he was shackled hand and foot and held in prison for a year, when his wife stole the keys and liberated him; also freeing at the same time Elisha Baxter, also a prisoner, and who afterward became Governor of Arkansas. After the war Mr. Vance went back to his farm. In 1868 he was elected to the State senate, and while in that body succeeded in having a new county created, which he named Grant and the county seat Sheridan. Mr. Vance was also appointed tax collector of the State of Arkansas by President Lincoln. In 1877 he settled in Perry County, where he lived until his death, which occurred September 24, 1888, at the age of sixty-eight. He left five children: Elizabeth V. (wife of Dr. William M. Allison, of Van Buren County), Enoch H., Jr. (of Malvern), James A. (attorney-at-law, now of Perryville), Samuel H. (of Perry County) and Robert C. (a teacher in Saline County.) Mr. E. H. Vance, Jr., was reared on the farm, and received the rudiments of his education at a subscription school, there being no free schools at that time. In 1865, when eighteen years of age, he went to Abingdon, Ill., and entered college, remaining there two years. He then returned to Saline County, and worked on the farm one year, when he was appointed assessor of his county. When Grant County was created he resigned that office, and was appointed county clerk, which office he held for four years. He was then appointed county judge or supervisor. In the spring of 1873 Mr. Vance was admitted to the bar, and commenced practicing law at Sheridan. He was married in 1871 to Eva Thomson, of Macomb, Ill., by which marriage two children were born, both of whom died. Mrs. Vance died September 19, 1873. Mr. Vance married his second wife, Sarah McKee, of Galesburg, Ill., June 22, 1876, and they have had two children, Eva and McKee. The latter died at the age of three years. Mr. Vance is a member of the Masonic fraternity and has been honored as W. M. of his lodge, and from 1886 to 1888, inclusive, as D. D. G. M. of the Sixth district. Mr. and Mrs. Vance are both members of the Methodist Church. They are sincerely esteemed throughout this community for their sincere worth and elevating influence.

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This family biography is one of 52 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Hot Spring County, Arkansas published in 1889.  For the complete description, click here: Hot Spring County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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