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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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JOHN J. CAMPBELL, A. B., Professor of English in the State Normal School at Warrensburg, Mo., has long been recognized as one of the leading educators of the state. For the past twenty years he has been connected with the normal, his work being now more specialized than it was at first. He is a great student, and by years of research has fitted himself well for his position in one of the best colleges not only of this state, but of any of the Western States. Frequently he has written articles of great merit and practical ability for educational associations and for teachers’ journals.

Professor Campbell was born in Huntingdon, Pa., October 5, 1840, and is of Scotch descent. His father, Samuel Campbell, born in 1819, is still living at Port Royal, Pa., and is a native of the Keystone State. He was reared on a farm, but at a very early age engaged in teaching, continuing in that vocation until his retirement from active life. At intervals he taught in the public schools and in academies. When his son J. J. was preparing for college, he held a chair in Milnwood Academy, at Shade Gap, in Huntingdon County.

At the age of twenty years our subject graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Arts from what was then known as Jefferson College, but which is now styled the Washington and Jefferson College of Cannonsburg, Pa. Later he entered the Western Theological Seminary at Allegheny City, Pa., and studied there for two years. Subsequently he enlisted in the United States Signal Service, remaining in the Government employ for one year and a-half, at the end of which time he and his companions were organized into a kind of scouting party, and went on the march to the sea and also through the Carolinas. He was honorably discharged at Louisville, Ky., August 22, 1865, and at once returned to finish his theological course. He had become identified with the Presbyterian Church and had acceded to his parents’ desire that he should enter the ministry, but when he returned from the army he was not strong, and instead of preaching he began to teach. About that time he accepted the offer of a position in a female seminary at Hollidaysburg, Pa., and afterwards became Principal of an academy at Richland, Ill., but had to resign that position on account of his health. After recuperating for some time at home, he went to take a professorship at Academia, Pa., believing that life in the mountains would be beneficial. It was in September, 1867, that he went there, and during the three years of his stay his hopes were realized.

August 22, 1870, Mr. Campbell married R. Annie French, of Philadelphia, Pa. She was born in New Albany, Ind., in 1838, and came of New England stock. Soon after their marriage the young couple started for Warrensburg, where Mr. Campbell had been elected to serve as Principal of the public schools. About five years after his graduation he had received the degree of Master of Arts from his Alma Mater. Some five years he was Principal of the city schools, and then, in the fall of 1875, became an instructor in the normal, with which he has since been connected. His wife died in June, 1877, leaving two children. Edith M., who graduated from the normal in the Class of ‘94, has finished the musical course in that school; and James E. is now a student in the University of New York City. In 1880 Professor Campbell married Eliza M. Smith, of Little Rock, Ark. She was born in this county, February 2, 1859, and was a student in the normal. She is a natural musician and has received special instruction in that line. She inherited her talent from her father, and her only child, Laurence, who was born September 2, 1882, also possesses musical ability of a high order.

Though his father was an ally of the Democratic party, our subject is quite liberal in his ideas relating to politics. His first ballot was cast for General Grant, and he prefers to vote for worthy men rather than party machines. A member of the Presbyterian Church, he has served as an Elder since 1878.

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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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