W. J. HORNBARGER, M. D. The value to any community of a professional man is not marked merely by his learning and skill, his proficiency in medical and surgical practice, but also by his character, both private and professional, his honorable adherence to medical ethics and his personal integrity and benevolence of purpose. These characteristics are combined in Dr. W. J. Hornbarger of Heber, Arkansas, and it is with pleasure that a short sketch of his life is here given. He was born near Quitman, Cleburne County, Arkansas, January 25, 1860, his parents being Washington and Jane (Hood) Hornbarger who were born, reared and married in Henderson County, Tennessee.
They came to what is now Cleburne County, Arkansas, in 1859 and at the breaking out of the great Civil War the father joined an Arkansas regiment of infantry for the Confederate States Army, was later captured, and died while in the Federal prison at Little Rock. His widow survived him but a short time, when she, too, passed away and the subject of this sketch was then taken by his grandfather, J. E. Hornbarger, with whom he made his home for some time. About six years since the grandfather was called from life, at the extreme old age of about ninety years.
In the common schools of his native county Dr. W. J. Hornbarger received his initiatory training, after which he entered Clinton Academy and later Quitman College, working his own way through school from start to finish and overcoming all kinds of obstacles in manner to reflect the highest credit upon him. In 1884 he commenced teaching school, but with no intention of making that calling his life work. He was appointed county school examiner in 1885-6-7 and later engaged in the drug business with Judge Meneese, and during the two years that he was connected with this establishment studied medicine in addition to dealing out drugs. In 1889-90 and 1890-91 he pursued his investigations in the Medical Department of the University of Arkansas, at Little Rock and in April, 1891, graduated from that institution, after which he at once located in Heber, where he has a very large practice. He was appointed a member of the County Medical Board in 1891, serving until July, 1893, when the law creating county boards was repealed. He has always been a close, careful and painstaking student and has wisely continued his studies since graduating and makes a careful study of every case that comes under his care, and this is no doubt one of the secrets of his success. He has made a specialty of the study of surgery, and on various occasions has proven himself a skillful and intelligent surgeon. He deserves the greatest credit for the perseverance he has shown under difficulties, and of him it may with truth be said that he is a “self-made man.” February 6, 1887, he was married to Miss Elva Spinks, and both are worthy members of the Baptist Church. Socially the Doctor is a Mason, and master of his lodge.