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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Izard 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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W. O. Dillard. The family of which the subject of this sketch is a representative, is one well known to the people of Izard County, for one or more of its members have been identified with its agricultural interests since 1849, when Alex. Dillard and his family located here. The latter was married to Delilah Legan, both being natives of Tennessee, and, throughout his entire life, he was engaged in farming and merchandising, following the latter occupations at Spring Creek and Flat Woods after coming to Arkansas. He served as justice of the peace and deputy sheriff of his county, and, during the time he served in the latter capacity, he transacted the greater portion of the business which should have been attended to by the sheriff. He was quite a wealthy man prior to the war, and owned several negroes, but his losses during the rebellion were very heavy, and these he never fully regained. He died in 1867, at the age of fifty-nine years. To his marriage, which occurred in 1825, were born a family of seven children, three of whom lived to be grown, and two now living: J. A., a resident of this county, and W. O. John C. died while serving in the Mexican War, being sergeant of his company. Both parents were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South, and the mother’s death occurred in 1837 or 1838. Mr. Dillard’s second wife was Mary Wood, of Tennessee, and she is now the wife of John Anderson. W. O. Dillard remained with his father until twenty-seven years of age, then commenced for himself, farming on his own land, which was situated on White River, in Izard County. This property he sold in 1866, and bought 202 acres on another portion of White River, about eighty acres of which are under cultivation, and in addition to this owns 1,000 acres, the entire amount of his land under cultivation amounting to 250 acres. In 1862 he joined the Confederate army as a private, but was afterward promoted to the rank of second lieutenant, and served three years under Col. Freeman, and was with Price on his raid through Missouri. He surrendered at Jacksonport, Ark., on the 5th of June, 1865, and returned home and resumed farming. From 1869 to 1875 he was successfully engaged in merchandising, and since that time he has been occupied with farming. He was married, in 1857, to Miss Averilla Jeffrey, but she died in 1868, after having borne four children, three now living: James L., Nancy J., wife of Neely Talley, and Alex. Mary E. is deceased. In 1869 Mr. Dillard wedded his second wife, she being a Mrs. Sarah Slavens, and to them three children have been born: J. J., John C. and W. O. Mr. Dillard was called upon to mourn the death of this wife in 1879, and in 1881, his third wife, who was a Miss Sallie Harris, also died, their marriage having been consummated in 1880. His marriage to his present wife, who was a Miss Adelaide Cantrell, took place in 1883. They have two children: George C. and Charley R. Mr. Dillard’s first two wives were members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, his third wife was a Cumberland Presbyterian, and he and his present wife belong to the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is a Democrat, a member of the A. F. & A. M., and is a man who favors and supports all laudable enterprises, especially those connected with churches and schools.

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This family biography is one of 98 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Izard County, Arkansas published in 1889.  View the complete description here: Izard County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Izard County, Arkansas family biographies here: Izard County, Arkansas Biographies

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