Biography of E. G. Friend

E. G. FRIEND, who was born near his present home near Sparta, Christian County, Missouri, August 29, 833, is one of the prominent farmers and stockraisers of his section, and a man well posted on agricultural topics.

He is a son of William and Elizabeth (Grimes) Friend, and a grandson of James Friend, who was a native of Scotland. The latter crossed the ocean with his two brothers to America at an early date, and settled in the grand old State of Virginia, where he was married and raised a large family. Later he moved to Ohio, and from there to Missouri, where he settled near New Madrid. There he resided for some time and then moved to Marion County, Arkansas, but remained there only a few years, when he died there in the twenties, at the age of one hundred and ten years. He reared a large family as follows: Andrew, Gabriel, James, Augustine, Jessie and William, and others forgotten. His wife died while he was residing in the Buckeye State or in Virginia, and was of German origin. Our subject’s father, William, who was a native of Ohio, moved to Minaberton, Missouri, and resided there a short time and then moved to Linden, on the classical Finley, a stream running through Christian County, after the death of his father, and made his home there until 1853, when his death occurred at the age of sixty-nine years. His wife, who was a native of the Hoosier State, passed away in 1847. William Friend was one of the most noted hunters of his day, and killed many deer and bears, panthers and elks and other smaller game; he has also killed elks in the vicinity of where the town of Sparta is situated. When the family first located at Linden it was a camping ground for the Indians, and neighbors were few and far between.

Our subject’s father, William Friend, was the first white settler in Christian County, Missouri, his nearest neighbor being fifty miles away. Later on Jeremiah Pearson moved and located where the town of Waldo, Webster County, is now situated, and he was the nearest neighbor at that time. Another neighbor, Thomas Paterson, moved in the neighborhood and settled at the little Indian village on the James River called Delaware Town, fifteen miles away; this place was named after the tribe of Indians that resided in it. William Friend was a soldier in the Indian wars, was in many battles with the Indians, and was taken prisoner by the Indians several times, but always made his escape. William Friend owned a large tract of 300 acres of land on both sides of the Finley, where the town of Linden is now situated. Thirteen children were the fruits of his marriage: Isaac died young; Hannah died young; James, who died in 1858, was married and the father of a number of children; Andrew died in Taney County in 1850, was married and raised two children; Elsie was the wife of Joseph Murray, raised a large family, was a member of the Baptist Church and is now deceased; Catharine married John Martin, raised a large family and is now deceased; Reason, residing three miles from Sparta, is seventy-four years old, was in the late Civil War and is able to travel about; William, who died in 1868, raised a family of three children, served as first lieutenant, Seventy-Second Regiment, Company H, of Missouri, and was sheriff of Christian County about the close of the war; Armetta, deceased, was the wife of Robert Stubbs, raised a large family, and was a member of the Baptist Church; Hiram was a married man, raised no children, devoted the greater part of his time to the study of the Scriptures, was a member of the Methodist Church for a number of years, and died in 1884; Elizabeth was the wife of Garrett Harrison, raised no children, was the youngest girl of the family, and is deceased; and our subject, E. G. Friend, who is the youngest of the family.

In the common schools of the county our subject passed his school days, and assisted on the home place until the father’s death in 1853. From there, in 1855, he went with Gen. Pool on the plains, searching for the discovery of Pike’s Peak, but failed to find it and returned home, and in the spring of 1857 he in company with William Cloud and John Thrower and families crossed the plains to California, not knowing they would ever return to their native State again, as the plains at that date were lined with red men, who were seeking the lives of all the whites they could find, scalping men, women and children. He arrived safely in California, stayed in that country until 1861, became the possessor of some wealth and then returned to New York on ship and then to Missouri. As the war question was becoming some-what agitated he became dissatisfied with Missouri and returned to California by the way of New York, and from there on ship to San Francisco. Returning to Missouri the second time from California on the ocean and then enlisted in the Seventy-second Regiment, Company H, Missouri Volunteers, serving until peace was declared. He was in a number of prominent engagements and numerous skirmishes, and was taken prisoner at one time. At the close of the war he got a sub-contract from Joseph Weaver to buy mules, horses and cattle for the Government, following this for some time; he then located on his farm, and since that time has been farming and handling stock, and has 440 acres of good farming land; his farm is one of the best in Christian County. All his life Mr. Friend has advocated the principles of the Republican party, and the members of this family were strong Unionists during the war. On the 7th of October, 1863, E. G. Friend was married to Miss Charlottie Tyndall, the oldest daughter of William V. Tyndall, who raised a large family in Christian County, Missouri She was born in 1843, she is a member of the Sparta Baptist Church. The following children were the fruits of this union: William V. died when young; Elias G., Jr., single, is a farmer and stock dealer, was elected to the important and responsible office of public administrator of Christian County, Missouri; for two terms, is a Mason and belongs to Friend Lodge No. 352; Elizabeth died when young; Tima Dec., born December 5, 1869, died February 24, 1894, was a member of the Sparta Baptist Church; Hiram, single, is a farmer and stock dealer; Hannah, the youngest child, single.

E. G. Friend joined the Masons, Chico Lodge No. III, A. F. & A. M., Chico, Cal., in 1860; he moved his dimit to Springfield, Missouri, to United Lodge. He afterward helped organize the first Masonic lodge in Christian County, at Ozark. The lodge was named for Mr. Friend, Friend Lodge No. 352. He was a member there a number of years, and was a strong supporter of Masonry having taken out his dimit from Friend Lodge No. 352, and helped organize the first lodge in Sparta, Missouri, Sparta Lodge No. 296, of which he is still a member. He is also a member of Capt. Robertson Post, G. A. R., Ozark. Being one of the pioneers of the county, Mr. Friend has witnessed all the wonderful changes that have taken place, and has contributed his share toward its advancement. He is a self-made man and one of the representative citizens of the county. He belongs to the Church of Christ.


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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