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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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WILLIAM S. WARNICK. Missouri has been known as a region in which fine farms abound, and Johnson County is not without her share of these fertile and well developed lands. One of the most beautiful and productive within her borders is in township 45, range 25, and comprises four hundred acres. With the exception of one hundred acres, the land is under cultivation, the house, barn and other buildings being above the average. The place is owned and occupied by the gentleman whose name appears at the head of this sketch, and who is one of the most successful farmers of the county.

Mr. Warnick was born in Wilson County, Tenn., three miles from the city of Lebanon, October 10, 1832. His parents, Maj. James and Sina (Payton) Warnick, were both natives of Tennessee, where they were farmers. The maternal grandparents were John and Fannie (Kelly) Payton, the former of English and the latter of Irish parentage. They settled in Wilson County, Tenn., in early life, and there passed the remaining years of their life on a farm. The paternal grandparents, Robert and Margaret (Smith) Warnick, were both natives of North Carolina, and after their marriage emigrated to middle Tennessee, were they were greatly troubled by the Indians who then infested the country. On the outbreak of the Revolutionary War the grandmother was a little girl of twelve years, and it was her duty to find safe places in which to hide the edibles from the soldiers. The grandparents lived in Rutherford County after their marriage until 1831 or 1832, when they went west to Tennessee. A few years thereafter they were induced to come to Missouri by a son-in-law who was living within two miles of Lexington. In Lafayette County they rented what was known as the Col. Smith Place, and there the grandfather died in 1834. His wife lived until 1867. They were the parents of one son and five daughters. Nancy, Mrs. Brown, is deceased; our subject’s father was the next-born; Margaret, Mrs. Smith, is also deceased; Ellen and Jane married men by the name of Berry, and both are deceased; and Malinda became a Mrs. Cavitt, and is likewise deceased.

James Warnick remained at home until his marriage to Miss Payton, after which he purchased a farm and was engaged in its cultivation until his removal to Henry County, Tenn. He lived for two years on a farm in that section, then returned to Wilson County, living there until coming to Missouri, undertaking the journey hither in 1834. He rented land in Lafayette County for the first year, then came to Johnson County, entering from the Government a quarter-section five miles from our subject’s present estate. On this he built a log house, in which he and his family lived for the following two years. He then disposed of it and entered a claim of one hundred and sixty acres on section 24, township 46, range 19, and lived there until his, death, in August, 1885, at the age of eighty-five years. His wife died in 1876. Mr. Warnick was a very prominent man, and well and favorably known throughout this portion of the state. In the early days, when the Indians were troublesome, he was made Captain of a company to banish them from the country, and from that time until his death was called “Major.”

William S. Warnick had seven brothers and sisters. Robert N. married Amanda Jane Oglesby, and is now living in Warrensburg; Elizabeth is Mrs. William P. Granger, of California; John P. married Nancy Jane Harrie, and makes his home near Fayetteville, this state; Margaret Frances married George B. Estes, now deceased, and she lives six miles north of Knobnoster; Malinda Jane is the widow of George W. Williams, and lives on a farm adjoining that of our subject; James H. married Nancy Wallace, who is now deceased, and he lives north of Knobnoster; Sina Ellen married Andrew Mack, and their home is about four miles east of the farm of our subject.

The original of this sketch was married, December 12, 1858, to Miss Mary Ann Williams, daughter of Squire Williams, of this county. She departed this life May 22, 1866. December 16 of that year our subject was married to Miss Sallie Ann Johnson, a native of Henry County, Mo., and the daughter of Samuel and Martha (Ehrhardt) Johnson, both natives of Tennessee. They came in early life to this state, settling in Henry County, near Calhoun, where they made their home for several years, and then came to Johnson County, settling three miles north of Windsor, where he entered land. After selling this tract he moved to Barton County, Mo., and purchased town property in Golden City, where he was living at the time of his decease, August 3, 1888. Mrs. Johnson is still living, making her home there with her two sons. After his marriage our subject entered a tract of two hundred and forty acres of land and later built thereon the dwelling which his family now occupies. To this he has added as his means would allow, until now he is one of the largest land-owners in the township.

June 17, 1861, a few months after the outbreak of the Civil War, our subject enlisted and served for some six months. During that time he participated in the battles of Carthage and Springfield, and on receiving his discharge returned home. He re-enlisted, this time being assigned to Company H, Second Regiment, with which he remained until the close of the war. This command surrendered in April, 1865, at Louisville, Ky., to General Palmer. Mr. Warnick then returned to the peaceful pursuits of farming, which avocation he has since followed with marked success.

To Mr. and Mrs. Warnick there were born two children: James W., who married Alice M. Cronhardt, and lives with our subject; and Samuel Delmar, who died at the age of eighteen months. By his first marriage Mr. Warnick had a son, George W., who is now married and living in Warrensburg. In politics our subject is, and always has been, a Democrat. Both he and his estimable wife are members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, attending the congregation near their home.

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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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