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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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John Wagner was born in Germany May 1, 1825, a son of Andrew and Eve (Anderson) Wagner, both natives of Germany, the father born in 1790. His parents had a family of four children: Rebecca, Andrew, John and Mike; the two latter were twins. The father was a farmer by occupation, and served in the Russian War; he was a servant of King William. He died in 1855, and his wife in 1825, both members of the Russian Church. The immediate subject of this sketch was born and educated in Germany, receiving a very liberal schooling. In choosing his occupation in life, he selected the baker’s trade, at which he continued for three years; he then learned the weaver’s trade, and in 1850 emigrated to the United States, coming direct to Arkansas. On his arrival here he had but $60. In 1865 he married Miss Martha Fender, a native of Arkansas, by whom he had six children: Andrew (deceased), Rosa, Arto M., Willie, and two who died in infancy. His wife died, and he afterward married Mrs. Rebecca (Kelley) Wagner, daughter of Samuel and Rebecca Kelley, who bore him three children, Bismarck, Grant (deceased) and Lilly S. Mr. Wagner is one of the successful farmers of Cany Fork Township, Pike County, where he owns an extensive farm of 860 acres of land, 180 under cultivation. He was engaged in the mercantile business at Murfreesboro for twenty-two years, where he also held the offices of treasurer, assessor and postmaster. In 1872 he served in the Legislature of his State. He and wife are both members of the Church of Christ.

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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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