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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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William H. H. Thomas, senior member of the law firm of Thomas & Horine, at Hillsboro, is a native of Washington County, Mo., born June 10, 1839. His parents, James W. and Eliza (Johnson) Thomas, were natives of Virginia, where they were reared and married. In 1826 they removed to Washington County, Mo., where they remained until 1845, at which date they came to Jefferson County, on Big River, and here the father died the same year. The family afterward removed to Arcadia, in Iron County, for educational purposes. The mother died in Hillsboro in 1875. Both parents were, for many years, faithful members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The father was well educated, and was a teacher by profession; was also justice of the peace for many years in Washington County, Mo. His father, John Thomas, was a Revolutionary soldier. William H. H. was reared principally by the filial care of a mother, and received his education at the common schools, and at J. C. Berryman’s College, at Arcadia. Before finishing his education he took up the study of law, and was admitted to the bar before he was nineteen years of age. In 1858 he began his practice at Steelville, but in 1859 removed to Texas County, Mo., where he continued the practice of his profession until the breaking out of the late war. He then enlisted in Gen. Bride’s recruiting command, and in the fall of 1862 was promoted to adjutant of J. D. White’s regiment of M. M. Parson’s brigade, Confederate States army, in which capacity he served with valor and credit until the close of the war, operating mostly in Arkansas, in the battles of Prairie Grove, Helena, and a great many minor engagements. He was severely wounded in the mouth, which disabled him from duty some months. In the spring of 1864 he was captured on the Arkansas River, taken to New Orleans, from there to Governor’s Island, and then to Fort Delaware, where he was held a prisoner until May, 1865, and then released on parole. Mr. Thomas then went to Arkansas, where he farmed until 1867, after which he returned to Jefferson County, and has since made a successful career at his chosen profession, being a member of the most substantial and successful law firms in Jefferson County. From 1868 until 1880 he was a member of the firm of John L. Thomas & Bro. He was married in 1868 to Miss Rebecca A., daughter of Solomon and Sallie Brill, formerly of Virginia. Mrs. Thomas was born in Washington County, Mo., and to their marriage were born five children, all living. Mr. Thomas is a Democrat in his political belief, and cast his first presidential vote for S. A. Douglas in 1860. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and his wife is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South.

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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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