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Below is a family biography included in The History of Lawrence 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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Rev. John E. Fenton is of English descent, and the son of Eleazer Fenton, a native Virginian, and a farmer by occupation. He married Miss Elizabeth Engleman, of Virginia, and in 1810 they moved to Floyd County, Ind., but finally settled in Warren County, Ind., where Mr. Fenton owned 320 acres of land. Their union was blessed by the birth of following children, all of whom grew up and were married: Enoch, Frederick, Joseph, John E., Mary, Dolly Ann and Daniel. Mr. Fenton passed his last days on his farm in Warren County, Ind., and died at the age of fifty-six years. He was a good man, and both himself and wife were worthy members of the United Brethren Church. In his politics he was a Democrat, and was in the Black Hawk War. He was a man who led an honorable, upright life, and was well respected. His son, John E. Fenton, was born in Floyd County, Ind., in 1818, and attained his growth on the farm, receiving a common-school education, to which he has since added by reading and study. Mr. Fenton united with the Methodist Episcopal Church at the age of sixteen years, and at the age of thirty he became a local minister, preaching with general acceptance to all for twenty-two years in Indiana. He married Miss Sarah Odle, daughter of William and Elizabeth Odle, and to them were born thirteen children, nine of whom are now living: William, John W., Thomas J., Mary, Joseph W., Worthington F., Mattie, Oliver S. and Daniel M. Mr. Fenton lived in Warren and Benton Counties, Ind., where he owned land, until 1870, when he moved to Lawrence County, Mo., and settled near Mount Vernon, where he purchased 500 acres of land. This he has divided among his children. Mrs. Fenton died January 10, 1864, and Mr. Fenton married Mrs. Martha L. Torrence, a widow, and the daughter of Joel and Calorina (Arnold) Booth. The Booths and Arnolds were of English descent, and settled among the pioneers of Connecticut. They were Puritans. By his last marriage Mr. Fenton became the father of four children: Ellery C., Benton R., Nola and Lawrence E. Mr. Fenton is a prosperous farmer, but has now retired from active work on the farm, although he still continues to preach. He is an excellent citizen, and has always lived a moral and upright life. He is a man of strong convictions, and a lover of honesty and truth. His children are settled around him, having been assisted to start in life by their father. Mr. Fenton is a Democrat in his political views.

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This family biography is one of 272 biographies included in The History of Lawrence County, Missouri published in 1888.  For the complete description, click here: Lawrence County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

To view additional Lawrence County, Missouri family biographies, click here

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