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Below is a family biography included in The History of Jefferson County, Missouri published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1888.  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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Benjamin F. England was born on the Plattin Creek, in March, 1843, on a farm on which his father settled on coming to Jefferson County, in 1835. His ancestors, it is supposed, resided in North Carolina, and were connected with the celebrated Indian Chief “Ross,” who lived in North Carolina prior to the removal of the Indian tribes west of the Mississippi. James R., the father of Benjamin F., was a native of Tennessee, born in 1809, and when quite young came with his father to Washington County, Mo., where he (James R.) served an apprenticeship at the tanner’s trade. In 1835 he came to Jefferson County, and opened a farm on the Plattin Creek. He married Miss Margaret, daughter of James M. McCormac, who was born in 1792, and who came with his father, Peter P. McCormac, to Jefferson County, in 1800. Mr. England remained on his farm on Plattin Creek until a few months prior to his death, when he moved near Bailey Station, and died here January 17, 1866. He was the father of six children who reached maturity, three sons and three daughters. The fourth, the subject of this sketch, was reared at home, and educated in the common country schools. He was naturally endowed with good business ability, and at the age of seventeen began a business career on his own account. He and his brother operated a farm at Bailey Station, and the next year with a partner engaged in merchandising at the same place. Two years later the business was removed to Hematite, but for two years Mr. England had charge of the farm. In 1866 he purchased his brother’s interest in the same and assumed charge in person, but eleven months later he sold the place to a good advantage, and spent some time in Arkansas looking for a suitable location. Not being satisfied, he returned to Missouri, and he, in company with his brother-in-law, E. F. Donnell, purchased 1,700 acres of land in the vicinity of Rush Tower. After various changes in the firm, Mr. England became sole proprietor and owner. He built a store, dwelling, warehouse, etc., which became the leading grain depot in Jefferson County. December 8, 1863, he married Miss Amanda C., daughter of William B. Weaver. She was born in Jefferson County, and by her marriage became the mother of the following four children: Lottie Belle, Laura E., Orcart H. and Maggie Hoyt. In 1875 over 30,000 bushels of wheat were shipped from our subject’s grain depot, Mr. England alone raising 2,200 bushels that year. He operated the store until 1876, when he leased it and repaired to the farm two miles west, but soon again engaged in merchandising. In 1881 he made an extended tour through Dakota, California, etc., again looking for a suitable location, but returned to Jefferson County, and in 1885 engaged in merchandising. Since 1886 he has leased the store and devoted his time to agricultural pursuits, and in the breeding of short-horned cattle. Again, in June, 1887, he went to California, in pursuit of a better location, but returned, not satisfied with a change. Prior to 1871 he had served several years as postmaster at Rush Tower, but has filled that position continuously since. He is largely interested in the R. E. Lee Gold Mine, at the Black Hills, also the Big Indian Silver Mines at Georgetown, Cal.; besides this he has an interest in the most promising silver mines of North Missouri. Mr. England’s success has been largely due to his economy and good management.

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This family biography is one of 224 biographies included in The History of Jefferson County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: Jefferson County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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