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Below is a family biography included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Pike 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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Joel H. Conway, hotel proprietor and farmer, Murfreesboro, Ark. Mr. Conway owes his nativity to this county, his birth occurring in 1849, and is the third in a family of four children born to the marriage of Thomas J. and Lorena (Lucky) Conway, the father a native of Tennessee, born in 1819, and the mother of Alabama. Thomas J. Conway worked on his father’s farm until eighteen years of age, after which he came to Arkansas, and settled in Hempstead County. He there began the study of medicine with his brother, and later went to Sevier County, where he married Miss Lucky. He came to Pike County in 1846, began the practice of medicine, and continued here until his death in February, 1859. He was the leading physician of his time, and had almost all the practice in the county. The mother died April 11, 1852. Joel H. Conway’s time was divided in early youth between assisting on the farm and in attending the common schools, where he obtained a good practical education. In 1862 he went to Washington, Ark., for a short time, but returned to Pike County, where he was engaged in the duties of the farm until 1867. One year later, with an older brother, George D., he raised a crop on the farm left by their father, and after this followed agricultural pursuits for three years. He subsequently made his home with a married sister, remaining with her for one year, and then came to Murfreesboro, where he engaged in business. In 1873 he returned to the farm, and in July of that year married Miss Roxana Mauney, a native of Murfreesboro, and the daughter of Dr. George R. Mauney, one of the old settlers, and a prominent physician. In January, 1877, Mr. Conway returned to Murfreesboro, and in March of that year started a general store in partnership with O. B. Owens. He continued at this for seven years, and in 1884 made a trip to New Mexico, but not liking that country as a place to locate, returned. He purchased a drove of cattle and took them to Indian Territory. In December, 1886, he bought his present property, and has since conducted the Conway House, the only hotel in Murfreesboro. Mr. Conway owns 250 acres of land, seventy acres of which are under cultivation, and it is situated two miles south of town, and yields a half bale of cotton to the acre. Mr. Conway was appointed postmaster in 1879, and again in 1885. He was elected justice of the peace in 1878, and again in 1880, and in 1882 was made mayor of Murfreesboro. He has always been active in school matters, and in fact all enterprises for the good of the county. To his marriage were born eight children, five of whom are deceased: Thomas (deceased), George D. (deceased), Ida (deceased), William (deceased) and one who died unnamed. Those living are Ella, Grover and Hugh. Mr. Conway is a Democrat in politics, and conscientious in his principles. He is one of the representative men of Murfreesboro.

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This family biography is one of 71 biographies included in Biographical and Historical Memoirs of Pike County, Arkansas published in 1890.  For the complete description, click here: Pike County, Arkansas History, Genealogy, and Maps

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