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Biography of S. G. Ramsey

Our subject is a man whose business career is a decidedly interesting one, showing the shrewdness, executive ability and competency which can be attained when one is so determined. Among all the industries that are carried on in the flourishing city of West Plains none succeeded so well as the ones that are conducted by practical men. An instance in mind is the success attained to by S. G. Ramsey, one of the prominent and influential citizens of that city. Mr. Ramsey was born in Franklin County, Missouri, October 20, 1836, and his father, J. A. Ramsey, who was a native Kentuckian, was one of the pioneers of Missouri. The grandfather, John Ramsey, was a native of Scotland, who came to this country and first settled in Virginia. Later he moved to Kentucky and from there to Missouri, where he died in 1845. Some of the early members of the Ramsey family served in the Revolutionary War. The father of our subject was a single man when he came to Missouri in 1830, and he first located in Franklin County, and tilled the soil for many years. He was an influential citizen and was county surveyor at one time. His death occurred near New Haven, that county, in 1852. Mr. Ramsey married Miss Naoma Miller, who was a native of Franklin County, where she was born in pioneer days. Her father, Phillip Miller, was a native of the Keystone State and an early pioneer of Franklin County, where he settled long before there was a steamboat on the Missouri River. The town New Haven was called Miller’s Landing for...

Biography of William Henry Tester

William Henry Tester was born in Burgess Hill, a town nine miles north of Brighton, County of Sussex, England, on July 4, 1869. He received the common school education as given by the parochial schools under the care of the Church of England. Six years of his life were spent in Weston Super Mare, situated on the Bristol Channel in Somersetshire. As a boy of ten or twelve, reading of the wonderful things of America–her immense mountain ranges, her Great Lakes and wonderful Niagara Falls, and last but not least of that Great American Desert as shown on the maps of the late ’60s–a strong desire to become a partaker of the things offered by that promised land possessed him, and he often found himself gazing westward from the seashore watching the sun as it sank into the western sea, and saying to himself, “Some day I shall follow to that wonderful land of promise.” The father of the family also became interested, not for himself so much, as he often said, but that his children might come into that inheritance of better things that great English-speaking continent offered those who sought her shores with a desire for the really good things of life and were willing to do their part. William Tester, the father of William H., was born at Burgess Hill (St. John’s Common) August 4, 1840, is still living, and for the last thirty-four years has lived in St. Louis, Missouri. Sarah Cornford Tester, the mother of William H., was born at Hurstmonceux, near Hastings, County of Sussex, England, on May 18, 1839. In 1865, on...

Biography of Oliver Bagby, M. D.

Dr. Oliver Bagby, a pioneer physician of Vinita, who for twenty-nine years was engaged in practice here, has become widely and favorably known throughout this section of the state, both in his professional capacity and also as a leader in financial affairs. He was born near New Haven, in Franklin County, Missouri, December 26, 1858, his parents being Julian and Mary E. (Bridges) Bagby, both of whom were born in the year 1834. The Bagby family came originally from. Glasgow, Scotland, and the maternal ancestors were also natives of the land of hills and heather, the grandfather, Andrew W. Bridges, having made his home in Scotland previous to his emigration to this country. Julian Bagby was born in Cumberland County, Virginia, in 1834, and his father, Madison Bagby, was born in Virginia in 1808, removing to Tennessee in 1847. At Memphis, that state, the latter followed the trade of a millwright and during the Mexican war was employed in the navy yard but after the close of that conflict returned to Virginia. When thirteen years of age Julian Bagby went to Missouri and his education was acquired in the Seminary for Males at Springfield, that state. He afterward engaged in teaching school and for six months served with the Confederate troops as an orderly sergeant under Captain Joseph Bell, while he was also with General Jackson’s Home Guard, attached to Price’s army. His marriage occurred in Missouri in 1857, and he followed the occupation of farming in that state until 1867, when he established a nursery business on Cedar creek, in Franklin County, developing one of the most extensive...

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