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Biography of S. W. Boswell

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S. W. BOSWELL, vice-president of Taney County Bank, and general business man of Forsyth, Missouri, was born in that city, October 15, 1860.

He is a son of Levi and Louisa (Wilks) Boswell, both natives of Missouri, the father being born in Taney County. Levi Boswell, Sr., grandfather of our subject, was born in Tennessee, and came to this State at an early day, taking up land on Swan Creek, about sixteen miles from Forsyth. There he resided until 1861, when, on account of his political views he was obliged to remove to Greene County, Missouri, where he remained during the war. He located near Springfield, and there made his home until 1866. Previous to the war he held the office of sheriff of Taney County, and, returning to that county after the war, he was elected county treasurer by the Republican party, of which he was an ardent adherent, having previously been a Whig. For some time before the war he was in business at Forsyth, but farming was his principal occupation in life, and he accumulated a fair share of this world’s goods. He was twice married, and by his second marriage, which resulted in the birth of two children, the father of our subject was born, he being the elder. Mr. Boswell was a soldier in the War of 1812. During the latter part of his life he moved to Forsyth, where his death occurred in 1872, when eighty-four years of age. The father of our subject was born about a year after his parents came to Taney County, and here he grew to manhood, receiving most of his education by the home fireside. He began teaching penmanship in Greene and Polk Counties, and then followed the carpenter’s and painter’s trades until the breaking out of the war, when he enlisted in the State Militia and served some time, making his home in Greene and Polk Counties during the war. In 1867 he came to Taney County, locating on a farm on Swan Creek, near Taney City. A year later he moved to Forsyth, where he entered the treasurer’s office under his father, and acted as deputy. Later he was elected to the office of treasurer and reelected, serving four years. He also held the office of deputy circuit and county clerk at one time, and, like his father, was a warm supporter of Republican principles. Although he never accumulated much wealth, on account of his great liberality, he was comfortably fixed, and was well and favorably known all over Southwest Missouri. His wife was a daughter of a pioneer, Jack Wilks, who settled in Missouri at an early day. Mrs. Boswell died during the war. She was the mother of two children, Mary F., wife of T. J. Vanzandt of Forsyth, and S. W:, our subject. Mr. Boswell was married three times, his second union being with a Miss Tirey. His third marriage was with Miss Anna E. McKinney, who bore him eight children: R. G., C. L., L. A., L., Ella, Minnie, Harrison and Boone.

Our subject received his education in the public schools of Forsyth, and until twenty-three years of age followed agricultural pursuits. After this he was interested in the mill at Forsyth and in 1884, became connected with the distillery business with Calvin Parrish, R. S. Branson and William Peck. The still is making about 3,000 gallons a year, and these men are doing a paying business. Our subject is also connected with the firm of Parrish, Boswell & Co., and assisted in establishing their house in 1887. He is a stockholder and the vice-president of Taney County Bank. In the year 1886 he was elected to the office of county treasurer by the Republican party, and held the office until 1890. Like his father and grandfather, he supports the platform of the Republican party and has always been one of the leaders of the same in his county. He is a member of the Masonic Lodge at Forsyth, No. 453, and his father was the first Mason admitted to that lodge. He has held the office of worshipful master and junior and senior warden of his lodge. Mr. Boswell takes a deep interest in worthy enterprises, and is a member of the school board at the present time. He owns a farm adjoining the city, also town property, and is a self-made man, having made all his property without assistance.

Miss Etta Frazier, who became his wife in 1885, was born in Georgia, and is a daughter of James Frazier, who at one time resided in Taney County, but moved to Texas, where he died a number of years ago. Four children were born to our subject and wife; the eldest died in infancy; the second, Benjamin Lee, died when eighteen months old, and Virgie and Bulah, who are living.


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