JAMES P. M. NORMAN. One of the most popular and widely known of Douglas County’s county officers is James P. M. Norman,who has been identified with the growth and the interests of the county for many years. Mr. Norman was born in Carroll County, Ga., April 27, 1847, and is a son of Abner S. and Charlotte (Orr) Norman, natives respectively of Alabama and South Carolina.
George Norman, grandfather of our subject, came from Scotland to this country, and brought with him the sturdy habits so characteristic of those of that nationality. Settling in Alabama, he there reared his family, and after a long and useful life passed to that bourne from whence no traveler returns. Abner S. Norman came to Douglas County, Missouri, in 1863, and the following year was killed by bushwhackers near Yellville, Arkansas He was with the army, but was not a soldier. Mrs. Norman died in 1881. Both were worthy members of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. The father and mother had emigrated from Georgia to Arkansas, and settled in what is now Baxter county in 1853. In 1863 they came to this county, as above stated, being obliged to leave Arkansas on account of sympathizing with the Union. There was a family of eleven children born to this worthy couple: Nancy C.; Sarah A., deceased, was the wife of W. J. Cooley, of Arkansas; George L. lost his life in the late war, dying in 1863; William C. died in the army in 1862; Abner J. was a soldier in the same regiment, and was killed by accident at the close of the war; Eliza V. is the wife of Jacob A. Sagerser, a farmer of this county; James P. M. (subject); Mary J., wife of John Hickman, of Baxter County, Arkansas; Robert F. is engaged in the lumber business in Greene County, Missouri; Jason F., a merchant, of Romance; and Charlotte A., the wife of Taylor Lutts, of Howell County, Missouri The father was at one time a Whig, but later he espoused the principles of the Republican party. He was well and favorably known in the county, and while a resident of Arkansas held the office of justice of the peace. He was one of the good old pioneers, so many of whom have passed away, and was a noted deer hunter.
The early life of our subject was passed on a farm, and his early or rudimentary education was received in the common schools of the county. Later he attended school in Christian County, and after reaching his twenty-first year entered the Mountain Home College, where he remained for three years. In 1869 he came to Douglas County, and for eleven years followed teaching in that and other counties. As a successful and thorough educator he became well known, and followed that profession until 1878 or 1879. Early in life he began farming, and carried this on in connection with school teaching. He now resides near Arden, and has a farm of 167 acres, besides 40 acres near Ava, eighty acres in Webster County, and a third interest in eighty acres of mining lands in this county. Mr. Norman has been unusually successful as an agriculturist and stockman, and is one of the leading farmers of the county. He is with the Populist party, and in 1880 was elected to the office of county assessor, to which position he was reelected in 1882. In the year 1890 he was elected to the office of county collector of Douglas County, and while discharging the duties of this office made his home in Ava. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and is a Mason, a member of Ava Lodge.
Mr. Norman was married first in 1869 to Miss Mary F. Ellison, daughter of A. M. and Frances Ellison, of this county. The father is deceased, but the mother is still living. Mrs. Norman was born in 1846, in Webster County, and died in 1886, leaving four children: Lucy J., wife of William E. Banks; Minnie B. is a prominent teacher; Ada F. married Fred J. Hartin, of Dallas, Tex.; and Robert M. Mr. Norman’s second marriage was with Miss Mary O. Carrick, daughter of James and Ruth (Skein) Carrick, who came to this country at an early day, and are now living near Cedar Gap, Webster County. Mr. and Mrs. Norman have three children: Homer J., Clyde E., and Quincy E. Mr. Norman has a fine farm, and is one of the most successful tillers of the soil in the county. He is a leading man in his section, and not only takes a deep interest in educational matters, but in all other worthy enterprises.