M. C. REYNOLDS, the most prominent merchant in Douglas County, has made his home in this section of the country since 1856, but was born in Roane County, East Tennessee, December 30, 1844, a son of J . A. G. and Eliza (Miller) Reynolds, who were also Tennesseans by birth. The mother died when the subject of this sketch was about eight years old, a daughter of Dobson Miller, who was one of the early settlers of Tennessee.
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J. A. G. Reynolds was a member of an early family of Tennessee, but in 1856 became a resident of Douglas County, Missouri, settling on a farm six miles north of Ava. He served in the State militia during the war, and died in 1892, at the age of sixty-six. He and his wife became the parents of three children: Mary J. is the wife of W. C. Kelton and lives in Berry County; M. C., and Mira, who became the wife of William Hartley and is now dead. For his second wife Mr. Reynolds took a sister of his first wife, and two children were born of this union, only one of whom grew to maturity, J. D., who is a merchant of Mansfield, Missouri.
The subject of this sketch passed his boyhood days in Tennessee, and after coming to Missouri was engaged in tilling the soil until after the opening of the Civil War. When the town of Ava was established he came to the place and opened a mercantile establishment, to which he has given his time and attention up to the present. Although he started in business in a modest way, he now has a large and well-stocked establishment, his goods being valued at $1o,000, and he does an annual business of $40,000. He does the largest business of any merchant in the county, keeps a general line of goods, and has a fine brick business house, 40×90 feet, which he erected in 1893. He is also associated in business with his brother at Mansfield, and the annual income derived from these establishments is very satisfactory. He has been very prominent in the political affairs of his section and has held the office of county treasurer three terms, or seven years. He was the postmaster at Ava from the time the office was established up to the time Harrison was elected for president. Socially he is a member of the I.O.O.F. lodge at Ava, and has held office in the same. He is a stanch Democrat and is one of the upright citizens of the county, is well known to its citizens, and is a man of noble principles and of great public spirit. He owns several farms in Douglas and Ozark Counties, being one of the largest land owners in the county. He was married in this county to Miss Elizabeth, daughter of James Hailer of Ava, and to their union three children have been given: W. F., J. A. G., and Mary B., who is the wife of H. S. Wilson, the bookkeeper in her father’s store.
Mr. and Mrs. Reynolds are members of the Baptist Church, and move in the best social circles of their section. Mr. Reynolds has resided in this section from the time it was a wild and unsettled district, and has seen and aided in its development. Mr. Reynolds is the president of the bank of Ava, the only institution of the kind in the county. It was established in June, 1890, by J. M. Adams, and was a private bank with a capital stock up to 1893, when a change was made and M. C. Reynolds became president, J. G. Reynolds cashier and J. M. Adams vice-president. They are doing a general banking business and the output of the institution is about $10,000. They loan money on personal securities and are doing a prosperous business. The bank building, located on the public square, is owned by them. J. M. Adams was born in Pennsylvania in 1853, a son of Jesse Adams, who died in the East, was educated in the public schools of his native State, and began life for himself as a real estate dealer. Later he engaged in the banking business in Kansas and also in his native town, and has a thorough knowledge of the business. He is engaged in the real estate business, has a complete set of abstract books of Douglas County, and is a wide-awake, shrewd and practical man of business.
J.A.G. Reynolds was born in this county October 24, 1870, a son of M. C. Reynolds, president of the bank. He was educated in the best schools of this section and at Quincy, Illinois, and when quite young entered his father’s store. In 1892 he was elected county treasurer, held the office until 1894, and in 1893 was elected cashier of the Bank of Ava. He is a shrewd young business man, honest upright and conscientious in the discharge of every duty and no more fitting person could be found for his present position. He is a member of Ava Lodge No. 26 of the A. F. & A. M., and is a Republican in politics. He is married to Miss Leota Curnutt, a daughter of J. M. Curnutt of Ava, and they move in the best social circles of the place.