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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Mississippi 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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Howard H. Bowen. To show what industry, perseverance and good management can do in conquering difficulties, it is only necessary to record some of the facts of Mr. Bowen’s career from earliest childhood up to the present day. Left an orphan in infancy, he has carved out his own fortune and has attained an enviable footing among the leading agriculturists of the county. He was born in Osceola on the 21st of January, 1856, being the only child born to his parents, and the day following his birth his father died and was followed to the grave by the mother eight days later. At the time of his death the father was engaged in farming, and was also in commercial business in Osceola. He belonged to one of the prominent pioneer families of the county, a short history of whom is given in the sketch of Capt. Bowen Howard H. Bowen was cared for by his grandparents, but they, too, died when he was about two years of age, after which he was cared for by an aunt, Mrs. Ruth Burk, and then resided with James H. Edrington, an uncle by marriage. Later he made his home with an uncle, John C. Bowen, and then again with his aunt, Mrs. Burk. When he was about eight years of age he was taken into the family of his uncle, Arthur C. Bowen, with whom he remained until he attained his majority. During this time his advantages for acquiring an education were of a rather inferior description, but this fault he has remedied in a great measure by reading, contact with business life and intercourse with his fellowmen. After starting out in life for himself he began working on a farm at $22 per month, less board, washing and mending, for John Matthews, and at the end of six months had saved $107, only spending during this time the sum of $2.60 for his personal needs, an instance of frugality rarely seen in the young men of the present day. He was employed as a farm laborer, working by the month, until the 27th of December, 1879, and up to that date had saved $500. With this money he made a payment of $450 on an unimproved farm of 120 acres, near Elmont. On this place he at once began clearing land, selling his wood at 50 and 65 cents per cord, and lived in a little log cabin, 8 x 10 feet, which was scarcely high enough for him to stand erect in. Here he worked until the fall when he went to Osceola, and during the winter was employed in a cotton-gin. In the spring of 1881 he put in the first crop that was ever raised on the place, which amounted to some eight acres of cotton and corn, and the next year had in about twenty-five acres, which he cultivated by hiring men with teams, not yet having been able to purchase a span of horses. About this time he met with some reverses, the floods of 1882-83 injuring his fences by washing them away and piling up logs and drift of all descriptions; but with the energy, push and pluck which are among his leading characteristics, he continued at his work and now has the entire tract cleared and under cultivation, it being also highly improved, with a fine dwelling-house, a good barn, warehouse and a large steam cotton gin. The latter has a capacity of twenty-five bales per day and was erected at a cost of $4,000. In addition to this admirable farm he owns a tract of 120 acres, two miles west of the river, forty acres of the land being under cultivation, and from this he derives a very fair rent. Four years ago it was a tract of wild land, but is now being put under cultivation and is improved with a good house. In the year 1887 he was united in marriage to Miss Fannie S. Boyles, a native of the county and a daughter of Charles Boyles, who was one of the old settlers of this region. Their only child, Charley Bard, died on the 15th of May, 1889, at the age of fourteen months and fourteen days, deeply mourned by his sorrowing parents. Mr. Bowen is a member of Lodge No. 27, of the A. F. & A. M., at Osceola. He has always been very temperate, and up to the age of twenty-six years had never taken a drink of liquor in a saloon.

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This family biography is one of 162 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Mississippi County, Arkansas published in 1889.  View the complete description here: Mississippi County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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

View a map of 1889 Mississippi County, Arkansas here: Mississippi County, Arkansas Map

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