Biography of John M. French

JOHN M. FRENCH. It should be impressed upon the minds of youth that at an early age they should practice introspection and should seriously study the famous Delphic oracle, “know thyself.” They will thus find as suitable an occupation as did John M. French, who at an early age showed much ability as an agriculturist. While Mr. French would unquestionably have made a success as a business man, or as a practitioner of law or many other of the learned professions, it is likewise true that no farmer of the county has gone deeper into the details of his occupation, or carried the same to greater perfection. Mr. French is a native of this county, born on his father’s old homestead, October 22, 1853, and is the youngest child of the family.

Like the majority of farmer boys, he attended the district school which was taught in an old log building erected before the war, but his school days were limited, attending only a short time during the winter months. Until 1872 he remained under the parental roof and was then married to Miss Sarah L., daughter of William and Lucinda Jones, born on the 3d of September, 1854, in Christian County. William Jones and wife were among the pioneers of this county, coming here from the Blue Grass State and locating in the neighborhood of Billings, in 1849. There Mr. Jones died in 1889. His widow resides on the old home place. Five children were born to this worthy couple, as follows: William T., James J., Mary E., W. A. and Sarah L. These children are all residing in this neighborhood.

After the marriage of Mr. and Mrs. French they lived on the farm of Joseph French, the father, for a number of years and then, in 1881, came to the farm where they now reside. Mr. French has 100 acres of as good land as is to be found in the county and is classed among the most prominent and successful young agriculturists of his section. He has his farm well improved and all but about four acres of woodland under cultivation. All his attention is given to farming and stockraising. In politics he is in harmony with the Republican party and has ever been active and public spirited. He has held a number of local offices and has been director in his school district for some time. He and family attend the Christian Church, of which Mrs. French and the elder children are members. Seven children have been born to them, namely: Joseph William, James M., Sarah L. E., Dora A., Katie E., Polly A. and Thomas A. who died when eighteen months old. Our subject and family stand high in the community, and the French family is well and favorably known throughout the county. Mr. French takes a great interest in educational matters and is giving his children every opportunity to obtain a good education. His pleasant home is located three miles from Billings and within a quarter of a mile of where he was born.



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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