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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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W. C. Davenport, son of H. W. and Hayden (Pryor) Davenport, was born in Marion County, Tenn., August 15, 1828. The parents were both of old Tennessee stock, and the maternal grandfather, William Pryor, was a soldier in the War of 1812. W. C. Davenport came with his grandfather, William Pryor, to Missouri in 1840, and made a settlement in Greene County, where W. C. grew to manhood. He followed agricultural pursuits for some time, and then abandoned this and took up milling in Greene County. He built a mill on Finley Creek, which he carried on for two years. He then located at White Oak Springs, Webster Co., Mo., and carried on merchandising for four years. He served nearly two years in the latter part of the war, and after that eventful struggle he again engaged in the milling and merchandising business at Marshfield, where he had been elected sheriff of Webster County, occupying that position for two years. The mercantile business he had carried on through nearly all of the war. In the spring of 1872 Mr. Davenport left Marshfield and located at Marionville, Mo., where he carried on the milling business for two years, after which he went to Jasper County and farmed for three years. He then purchased a mill at Aurora, which he operated for three years, and then selling out he purchased the Empire Mills. He was married in Greene County, Mo., to Miss Mary E. Ruffin, a daughter of T. W. and Ruth (Vaughn) Ruffin, natives of Tennessee. This union resulted in the birth of six children, three sons and three, daughters, all grown: Delacy Alice, wife of F. C. Leuther, of Verona; Emogene, wife of E. L. Ralston; William G., Jerome L., Ulysses C. and Pearl. Mr. Davenport is a member of the G. A. R., and he and his family worship at the Baptist Church. Besides his milling interest Mr. Davenport carries on farming, and is one of the county’s best citizens. He was supervisor of registration of Webster County.

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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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