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Below is a family biography included in the book, Portrait and Biographical Record of Johnson and Pettis County Missouri published by Chapman Publishing Company in 1895.  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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JUDGE CHARLES H. BOTHWELL, an enterprising and wide-awake farmer and sheep-raiser, living on section 35, township 45, range 28, Johnson County, is one who through his own efforts has established himself among the prominent and progressive men of the county. He is a native of Clay County, Ill., where his birth occurred on the 6th of July, 1842, and is a son of John T. and Priscilla E. (Potter) Bothwell. The father was born in Vinton County, Ohio, September 25, 1816, and is still living, but the mother, who was born in the same county, in 1818, died when our subject was young. He is the second of her five children, three of whom grew to maturity, while two are yet living, the other child being James Cloyd. The latter, who was born December 2, 1844, and is married, was a soldier during the Civil War, serving as bugler of Company B, Thirteenth United States Infantry, “Billy” Sherman’s regiment. He now makes his home in Wayne County, Ill.

The father was three times married and by the second union had eight children, who are still living. He is one of a family of eight, six of whom still survive, the family being noted for longevity. By trade he is a tailor, but also carried on merchandising and dealt in stock to some extent. From Ohio he removed to Clay County, Ill., where he still resides. Originally he was a Whig, singing with a glee club which supported William Henry Harrison in 1840, but on the organization of the Republican party he joined its ranks, and voted for John C. Fremont. He has also for many years been an active member of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

The boyhood days of our subject were spent on the old home farm, where he worked in the fields during the summer season, and for a few months in the winter attended school, there receiving his education. His especial pride was mathematics, in which he always stood high.

In August, 1862, Mr. Bothwell enlisted in Company A, Ninety-eighth Illinois Infantry, as a private, but in February, 1863, was made sergeant. He participated in the battle of Hoover’s Gap, June 24, 1863, and at Chickamauga, on the 18th of September, was wounded by a gunshot; the ball struck him under the left arm, hit the shoulder-blade and spine, and came out on the right side. He was removed to a temporary hospital, where he remained two days, when, the army retreating, he was captured and held a prisoner two weeks, at which time he was paroled and started for home. There he remained four months, suffering much, as gangrene set in, but he finally recovered sufficiently to go to Benton Barracks, St. Louis; then, after two months, by order of the Secretary of War, he was sent to the front without being exchanged. He participated in the Atlanta campaign and with his company was sent in pursuit of Hood, serving in Wilder’ s brigade, which was called by the Confederates “Wilder’s Lightning Brigade.” The regiment was mounted infantry, but gave up their horses to Kilpatrick’s men, who were going with Sherman, and were without until their return to Louisville. Mr. Bothwell was in the battle of Selma, Ala., on the 2d of April, 1865, which he considers the fiercest battle in which he engaged. His company at the time carried the flag, and out of twenty-five men three were killed and eleven wounded. From Montgomery they went to Columbus, and thence to Macon, where Howell Cobb surrendered to them. The regiment that captured Jefferson Davis belonged to the same division. On his twenty-third birthday, July 6, 1865, Mr. Bothwell was discharged and returned home.

Our subject remained with his father until his marriage, which took place on the 12th of September, 1867, when Miss Ellen G. Crackel became his wife. She was born in Clay County, Ill., on the 4th of April, 1851, and is a daughter of Joseph and Nancy (Stinnett) Crackel, the father of English birth. Mr. Bothwell started for Missouri in, 1868, where in the June previous he had entered one hundred and twenty acres of land, and there he still resides. His father, who supposed he owned the same, had paid taxes on it for several years, and had given our subject a deed for it, but it had reverted to the Government, and although it had become very valuable, our subject obtained it for the usual price of $1.25 per acre. It is now well improved, and he has extended the boundaries until now two hundred acres yield to him bounteous returns for his care and cultivation. It is all well fenced, a portion by hedge, the remainder by rails, plank and wire. On the 17th of December, 1886, he was called upon to mourn the death of his estimable wife, who was buried at Holden, Mo. In their family were nine children, seven still living: Priscilla E.; Charles Francis; Joseph, who died in infancy; Edward K.; Conrad H.; Harvey H., who died at the age of eight; and Marietta, Barney and Cloyd Ross.

In his political views Mr. Bothwell is a Republican, and was elected by his party to the office of County Judge in 1880, overcoming a large Democratic majority. He has acted as a delegate to various conventions, and was a member of the Central Committee for many years. Socially he belongs to Alma Lodge No. 26, K. of P., and to the Junior Order of Mechanics, Council No. 14. He has many relics of the Rebellion, among which is a roll of honor signed by General Wilder and Adjutant Knoff, and also a medal presented to him by the former. He has a star taken from the hat of a Texas soldier, the rifle and revolver he carried, a leather cap box and cup which he took from a Confederate camp at Selma, and other cooking utensils. He has attended many reunions, and has the badges which he wore at each. Among his many friends and correspondents are Major Warner and General Wilder, a portion of one of the letters of the latter being as follows:

“Johnson City, Tenn.,
“August 27, 1890.
“C H. Bothwell, Holden, Mo.

“My Dear Sir: — -Your favor of August 1 received. As I have not yet received a copy of the map of Chickamauga battlefields you speak of, showing our position at Alexander Bridge on Friday, I am unable to give the information you seek. I have had a great deal of trouble trying to get justice done our brigade in regard to location and services at Chickamauga. We were so detached and did so much fighting on our own hook most of the time, that the chiefs of corps did not know of the important services rendered, and cannot realize that we stood the brunt of hard fighting all the afternoon of Friday, nor can they understand that we saved the day on Saturday on our right; nor can they realize that we broke Longstreet’s left, and turned his famous charge away from McCook’s corps.

“I shall write to-day to the War Department, asking for a full set of maps, and hope to be able to give you more information later. In the mean time you would do well to write the War Department direct, giving your ideas of the battle of Chickamauga.

“I think the wounded of Friday night were taken back near Lee & Gordon’s mill. I know they were taken to Crawfish Springs later, but it was impossible for me to keep track of all these details, as I had my hands full keeping track of the enemy, and holding them back from running over everything.

“Truly your friend,
“J. T. Wilder.”

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the Johnson County, Missouri portion of the book,  Portrait and Biographical Record of Johnson and Pettis County Missouri published in 1895 by Chapman Publishing Co.  For the complete description, click here: Johnson County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

View additional Johnson County, Missouri family biographies here: Johnson County, Missouri Biographies

View a map of 1904 Johnson County, Missouri here: Johnson County, Missouri Map

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