Biography of W. F. Ryan
W. F. RYAN, another of the proprietors of the The Harrison Roller Mill Company, has been a resident of the county since 1885, having come thither from Kansas, but was born in Clark County, Illinois, February 12, 1858.
His father, Jacob M. Ryan, was born in Ohio, but at an early day became a resident of Clark County, Illinois, later moved to Kansas, and in 1882 came to Boone County, Arkansas, where he died in June, 1893, having been an extensive lumber dealer of Harrison. He was a soldier in Company G, Fifty-fourth Regiment of Volunteers, during the war, belonged to the Republican party, and while a resident of Crawford County, Kan., held the office of sheriff two terms, and justice of the peace several terms. He followed merchandising and farming in Illinois, and while in Kansas tilled the soil. His widow, whose maiden name was Abbie Ann, divides her time between her daughter, Mrs. L. R. Smilie, and her son, W. F. Ryan. She bore her husband the following children: Mary R., wife of J. B. Houck, a member of the milling company; Robert O., who is living in Newton County, Arkansas; Wilbur F., of the above-mentioned firm; Reginald C., who is a farmer of the State of Washing-ton; Annace L., wife of L. R. Smilie, of the milling company; O. W., who is a lumberman of Harrison, Arkansas; Rose J. Pearl died young, and T. J. was the wife of R. H. Lawton at the time of her death. They were all reared in the faith of the Methodist Episcopal Church.
W. F. Ryan received his initiatory training in the common schools of Kansas, and when twenty-one years of age began doing for himself as a farmer in that State. Upon first coming to this county he gave his attention to saw milling in the northern part of the county, but gave that up when he began grist milling. He is doing well financially, is a wide-awake and progressive man of affairs, and a credit and acquisition to the county. He has followed in the footsteps of his worthy father and is a Republican, and a member of the Sons of Veterans. His wife was Miss Ruth A. Barkdwell, who was born in Iowa, and by her he has two children: Myrtle A. and Mary A. Mrs. Ryan is a worthy member of the Baptist Church. Mr. J. B. Houck, like Mr. L. R. Smilie, was also a native of Pennsylvania, and in early life moved with his parents to Illinois, thence to Missouri, and then to Kansas. While residing in the latter State he married Mary R., daughter of J. M. Ryan. He was engaged principally in farming until 1884, when he went to Boone County, Arkansas, where he became a member of the Harrison Roller Mill Company, and where he has since resided.