Biography of J. Frank Seaman

J. FRANK SEAMAN. Among the reputable men of Galena who have made their home in Stone County since 1865, is J. Frank Seaman, whose birth occurred at Carrollton, Carroll County, Arkansas, October 1, 1847.

His father, Hon. John F. Seaman, was born in Saratoga County, New York, in 1812, and was of Scotch origin. He remained in his native county until grown, and then became a driver on the Erie Canal. Following this, he became a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in 1834 emigrated to Michigan, where he resided two years. In 1836 he was appointed a missionary to the Cherokee Indians, and was in their nation for two years, after which he was transferred to the Arkansas conference. After a little he gave up his ministerial duties and began the study of medicine under Dr. Forest, of Huntsville, Madison County, Arkansas. Up to 1844 or 1845 he practiced medicine, and then engaged in merchandising at Carrollton. While there, he married Miss Sophia E. Kenner, August 18, 1846, and there remained until 1862, when, on account of his Union sentiments, it became unpleasant for him and he moved to Lawrence County, Missouri. There he resumed the practice of medicine and also tilled the soil until 1869, when he again embarked in merchandising, following this at Marionville, Missouri, until his death, which occurred suddenly, on March 27, 1870. He was a strong Union man, and after the war became a stanch Republican. Mrs. Seaman is still living at Marionville, and is now sixty-nine years of age. She was born in Tennessee, and was the daughter of C. E. and Dorcas (Burren) Kenner, both probably natives of Tennessee, and early pioneers of Arkansas, settling in Carroll County as early as 1836. Six children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Seaman, four of whom survive, as follows: J. Frank; Ellen, wife of M. L. Williams, resides in California; Dorcas, died in 1857, when a child; Charity, married C. H. Neff, of Marionville, Missouri, and died in June, 1892; Dotey, D., is a druggist of Marionville; and Emma, resides at Marionville. The mother has been a lifelong member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. The father of our subject was elected county treasurer of Carroll County, Arkansas, before the war and afterward, represented that county in the Legislature of the State. He was a public-spirited citizen, and was a prominent man in all public affairs.

. Frank Seaman spent his youthful days in Carroll County, and received a fair education in the schools of the same. He was taught the duties of farm life, and although too young to enlist when the war broke out, he enlisted in Company K, Forty-sixth Missouri Volunteer, Infantry, in 1864. He operated in southwest Missouri, was taken prisoner by Capt. Green, but was at once released. Previous to becoming an enlisted soldier, our subject took part in several engagements, and was on many scouting expeditions, being with Col. Harrison in a fight with Brooks on King’s Creek. After the war Mr. Seaman located in Stone County and began clerking in the store of W. F. McCullah, where he remained a year. After this he located on a farm, and there remained until 1869, when he embarked in merchandising with his father at Marionville, Missouri Four years later he was appointed postmaster under President Grant. He located in Carroll County, Arkansas, in 1873, where he followed merchandising for one year, and then returned to Stone County, Missouri, to his farm. In 1878 he was elected county and circuit clerk and recorder of Stone County, and held that position eight years. In 1889, he established the Stone County Bank, and was elected cashier of the same. The year previous to that, he was admitted to the bar, but has never practiced. Mr. Seaman is also in the abstract and real estate business, and he and O. F. Douglas of Crain, are the owners of a large tract of land. He has three improved farms of his own and a residence three-fourths of a mile south of Galena.

This pleasant home is presided over by his wife, who was formerly Miss R. O. Nelson, their nuptials having been celebrated March 3, 1870. Her parents, Samuel D. and M. C. (Shannon) Nelson, were natives of the Old North State, and came to this county many years ago. The father passed away in 1861, but the mother is still living. Mrs. Seaman was born in Stone County in 1851 . Her uncle, John D. Shannon, was the first sheriff in southwest Missouri. Mr. and Mrs. Seaman have reared a family of five children, as follows: Efton, married, is a prominent hardware man of Galena; Charles, single, is at home; Benjamin; Etta and May. Mr. Seaman and family attend the Methodist Episcopal Church, in which his wife holds membership. In politics he is a Republican. Socially he is a member of the Masonic order, No. 515, Galena and Raymond Arch Chapter of Marionville, Missouri, No. 97, as well as of Commandery No. 54 at the same place. Aside from this, Mr. Seaman is a member of Galena Post No. 323, G. A. R., and has been commander of the post. He has also been worshipful master of the Masonic lodge of Galena for years, and is a charter member of the Masonic order and the post.


A Reminiscent History of the Ozark Region: comprising a condensed general history, a brief descriptive history of each county, and numerous biographical sketches of prominent citizens of such counties. Chicago: Goodspeed Brothers Publishers. 1894.

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