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Below is a family biography included in the book, The History of Lauderdale County, Tennessee published by Goodspeed Publishing Company in 1886.  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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J. W. Duncan, an extensive merchant and cotton planter of Golddust, Lauderdale County, was born January 26, 1848, at Rising Sun, Ind., and was the oldest of seven children born to Wilson N. and Frances E. Duncan. The father was a native of Virginia, and died in 1881 at Golddust. The mother was a native of Indiana and died in 1870. The father was a steamboat man, and our subject was engaged in the same business when fifteen years of age, at Cincinnati, Ohio, until 1876, when he commenced merchandising at Ashport and Golddust, and has since continued. During the war he was on steam boats employed by the Government to transport goods from the war department. July 11, 1877, he married Amelia B. Volkmar, the daughter of Frederick and Mary Volkmar, of Memphis, Tenn., and they have had three children: Berdie May, born August, 1878; Willie, born October, 1882, and Fannie, born September 18, 1886. Mr. Duncan has made his money since the war by close application to business and good management. For ten years he has acted as postmaster at Ashport and is a member of the Masonic Lodge (De Soto 229) at Memphis, Tenn., and is a firm Democrat. He is one of the most extensive cotton planters in this part of the State, and owns a steam cotton gin, in addition to a large stock of general merchandise. He has never had a partner in business in his life, and is now worth $25,000 free of any encumbrance. He is one of the solid men of the county.

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This family biography is one of 116 biographies included in the book,  The History of Lauderdale County, Tennessee published in 1886 by Goodspeed.  The History of Lauderdale County was included within The History of Lauderdale, Tipton, Haywood, and Crockett Counties of Tennessee. For the complete description, click here: History of Lauderdale, Tipton, Haywood, and Crockett Counties, Tennessee

View additional Lauderdale County, Tennessee family biographies here: Lauderdale County, Tennessee

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