Webster County KY Biographies

Subjects of Perrin, Battle & Kniffin 1885 Biographies

From: Kentucky, A History of the State. Perrin, Battle & Kniffin. 2nd ed., 1885, Webster Co.
WILLIAM G. DUNCAN was born February 11, 1847, in Henderson County, Ky., and is a son of Absalom and Elizabeth (Robbins) Duncan. The father was born in North Carolina and now resides in Henderson County, of which the mother is a native. Our subject, at the age of eighteen, commenced farming on his own account. He first purchased thirty-six acres and added other lands as his means would allow; he now owns a farm of 132 acres, on which he resides and which is one of the best improved in this locality; he also owns four houses and lots at Robards' Station, Henderson County. Mr. Duncan was married, in 1865, to Louisa Cavanaugh, of Henderson County; this union has been blessed with six children, one son and four daughters are living. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity.

ISAIAH EAKINS is a native of Henderson County, Ky., born December 12, 1819, and is a son of George and Sarah E. (Melton) Eakins. He is the sixth of a family of ten children, and is of Irish-English descent. The paternal grandfather of subject was born in the Emerald Isle and came to America in the last century. Subject's parents were born in Rutherford County, N.C.; his father was born in 1776. In 1811 the Eakins family immigrated to Kentucky and settled in Henderson County, where the parents of our subject died. They were among the first settlers of that county and were thoroughly acquainted with the pioneer ways of Kentucky. Isaiah remained on the farm until his twenty-sixth year, when he commenced life for himself. In 1845 he settled on his present place, where he has since resided. In addition to the old homestead of 200 acres, nearly all of which is in a high state of cultivation, Mr. Eakins has 150 acres southeast of Sebree. He was married in 1849 to Miss Mary E. Long, a native of Hickman County, Ky., and a daughter of John and Priscilla (Wright) Long, who are of German extraction. By this union ten children have been born: Alphonso D., Rosultha G., Claudius W., Down C., deceased, Theodo D., Zach D., Adell, Minnie I., Anna E. and an infant that died unnamed. Mr. Eakins is a Democrat, but takes no active part in politics. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity.

REV. ALGERNON EDWARDS is a native of Kentucky, born May 5, 1826, in what is now Webster (formerly Henderson) County, Ky. He is one of a numerous family descended from Capt. James M. Edwards, of Revolutionary fame, and is of English extraction. He is the respresentative of a long line of ancestry, and for two centuries, at least, the Edwards family has been known in America. The father of this reverend gentleman was born in Virginia, and came with his parents to Jefferson County, Ky. He was a soldier in the war of 1812, and one of the prominent early day men of the State. In 1825 the Edwards family came to what is now Webster County, and made a settlement near where our subject was born, and where he has since resided. Mr. Edwards has long been a tiller of the soul [sic] and is known as one of the best farmers in his neighborhood. He now has 140 acres of well-improved land. In 1855 he was licensed to preach, and since that time has been preaching more or less in the Methodist Episcopal Church South, of which he is a member. He was married, May 12, 1848, to Miss Lucy Ann Sandefur, of Henderson County. This union was blessed with nine children, six of whom survive: Decolor, Florence, Laura, Taylor, Barnett and Bell. Mr. Edwards was formerly a Whig, but is now a Democrat.

JAMES W. FRANKLIN was born June 19, 1854, in what is now Webster County, Ky., and is a son of Dr. A.W. Franklin, a native of Virginia, who, at theage of about two years, was brought by his parents to Spencer County, Ky. In youth he received a good common school education; taught school; took up the study of medicine and soon took up the medical profession, which he followed until his death, which occurred in 1864, aged sixty-two years. The mother, Mary E. (Asher) Franklin, is a native of Caldwell County, and is living with her son on the farm. Our subject owns the homestead, consisting of about 200 acres, where he resides. He was married, on October 17, 1874, to Nancy Mitchell, of Webster County. Three sons and two daughters have blessed their union.

THOMAS K. GIVENS was born in Hopkins County, Ky., January 24, 1819, a son of James K. and Margaret P. (Given) Givens, the former a native of Virginia, the latter of Kentucky, and of Irish extraction. James K. Givens, at the age of fourteen, in 1811, came with his parents to what is now Hopkins County, Ky., then a part of Henderson County, where his father, Thomas Givens, bought a partially improved farm, upon which he resided, with the exception of a very few years, until his death. James K. was employed on his father's farm until he attained his majority, when his father gave him 150 acres of wild land adjoining the old homestead, where he improved a farm upon which he resided until his death in March, 1855. To this farm he added until he had about 400 acres of land. He was a member, first, of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and afterward of the United Baptist Church. Thomas K. was employed on his father's farm until he became of age, when he bought a partially improved farm in Hopkins County, upon which he resided about twelve years. He then sold out and came to Webster County, to Providence, where, in 1856, he engaged in the tobacco business, which he has since followed in connection with farming. He owns two large tobacco stemmeries, one of which he built in 1866 and bought the other in 1878. For the past fourteen years he has also been engaged in the general mercantile business, most of the time in company with his son, Henry Givens, under the firm name of T.K. Givens & Son. In 1872 Mr. Givens made a trip to California, and in 1875 he, in company with his cousin, John W. Givens, spent three months in Europe, visiting the principal cities and places of interest in England and on the continent. He and his cousin, John W., each own a one-third interest in two stock ranches and other lands in Texas, amounting to 7,500 acres; they have also several hundred head of horses, cattle and mules. They also each own an interest in three or four coal mines, besides several hundred acres of valuable coal lands. Their coal is of a very superior quality, being pronounced, by good judges, superior to any found west of Pittsburgh, Penn. Mr. Givens was first married, January 12, 1841, to Miss Margaret Hunter, a native of Pennsylvania, who died in April, 1845; she was a member of the United Baptist Church. Mr. Givens' second marriage was October 26, 1846, to Miss Judith B. Gist, a native of Clark County, KY. Ten children are the fruit of this union, nine of whom - three sons and six daughters - are living. He and wife are members of the United Baptist Church. He is now the oldest member of the church in Providence. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and in politics he is a Democrat.

HENRY GIVENS was born in Hopkins County, Ky., April 6, 1849, son of Thomas K. and Judith B. (Gist) Givens. He received a good education and is a graduate of the Commercial College of Louisville, Ky. He was employed on his father's farm and in his father's stemmery, until he attained his majority, and soon after became a partner with his father in the tobacco business. In 1872, he became a partner with his father in the general mercantile business at Providence, Ky., under the firm name of T.K. Givens & Son. They carry a large and general stock, amounting to about $20,000, with annual sales of about $40,000. Mr. Givens was married, December 28, 1876, to Miss Aggie Rice, a native of Hopkins County, Ky., and a daughter of K.G. Rice. By their union were born two sons and one daughter, all living. Mrs. Aggie Givens died in August, 1882. She was a member of the United Baptist Church. Mr. Givens' second marriage was January 1, 1884, to Mrs. Byrde (Pike) Murphy, a native of Springfield, Tenn. Mr. Givens is a member of the United Baptist Church, and his wife of the Methodist Episcopal Church South. He is a Democrat.

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