Jonathan Fairbanks and Clyde Edwin Tuck

Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri

Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens


JOHN T. McNABB. We are told that civilization follows the flag. Would it not be more appropriate to say that it follows the ax? Civilization never found its headquarters in the woods. The mighty ax must first clear the land and hew out the logs for the pioneer's cabin. Without it our ancestors could not have subdued the wilderness and made smooth the way for American civilization. Therefore the little insignificant ax is civilization's fore-runner. Its ring through the forest is the trumpet call, directing the onward march of the army of progress. The flying chips mark the footsteps of those who fight in the army's van. Let us then not forget to render due homage to the ax. Among those who blazed the way with this instrument for present-day progress and prosperity is John T. McNabb, a farmer and respected citizen of Republic township, Greene county, who came to the Ozark region when it was still mostly undeveloped, so he did his full share of the work of clearing the wild land and bringing it up to its present state of cultivation.

Mr. McNabb was born in Polk county, Tennessee, September 23, 1859. He is a son of Taylor and Margaret D. (Whaley) McNabb. Grandfather McNabb was a native of Scotland, from which country he emigrated to America before the Revolutionary war and he was a soldier in that war. Taylor McNabb was a native of South Carolina and Margaret D. Whaley was born in Georgia. They spent their early lives in Georgia and Tennessee, received such meager educational advantages as the schools of those early times afforded and were married in Dixie land. Taylor McNabb was twice married, the mother of our subject having been his second wife. He became the father of a large family. Five of his children were born to his first union, namely: Lucretia, deceased; Vovaline, deceased; Ann is the wife of Sam Hocksett and lives in Oklahoma; the fourth child is deceased; Virgil lives in Georgia. The following children were by Taylor McNabb and his second wife: Mrs. Louisa Nicholson, a widow, lives in Georgia; L. T., deceased; Mary, wife of Lon Bates, lives in Tennessee; Bettie, wife of Frank Jack, lives in Tennessee; William T. and a twin brother are both deceased; Rachael, deceased; Victoria, deceased; Clementine, deceased; John T. of this sketch is the youngest.

John T. McNabb received his education in the common schools. He was fifteen years old when his father died. He remained on the home farm in Tennessee until he was twenty-one years of age, then emigrated to Greene county, Missouri in December, 1881, landing here with but a wife, a horse and eighteen dollars in money. He located in Republic township. He is deserving of a great deal of credit for what he has accomplished. Although starting out in life with nothing he has worked hard and managed well, and today is owner of one of the choice farms of his township. He first rented land here and raised a crop in partnership with Hugh Boyd, then moved on a farm on the James river, near Nelson's mill, but the following fall moved across the line into Christian county, remaining there twenty-three years. Having prospered, he purchased a farm of one hundred and twenty acres, and twelve years ago he returned to Republic township, buying one hundred and twenty acres more, place now known as the Oak Grove Stock Farm. All of his land is under cultivation but fourteen acres. He also owns sixty acres in Section 29, Republic township, having an aggregate of three hundred acres on which he carries on general farming and stock raising on an extensive scale. His land is well improved and he has an attractive home and large, convenient outbuildings, and an excellent grade of live stock is always to be seen about his place.

Mr. McNabb was married on October 19, 1879, to Sarah Adaline Land, a daughter of Hester and Lucindy (Baker) Land, natives of Tennessee, where they spent their earlier years, finally emigrating to Greene county, Missouri. Mrs. McNabb was born in 1864 and was one of nine children, namely: Mrs. Ann Couch lives in Republic township; Jane, Maggie, William, Thomas are all deceased; John lives in Ash Grove; Ellen, deceased; Yankey is deceased; and Sarah A., wife of our subject, is the youngest. She grew to womanhood on the home farm and received a common school education.

To Mr. and Mrs. McNabb eleven children were born, eight of whom still living, namely: Margaret is the wife of John Gray, of Stone county; Taylor lives in Republic engaged in automobile business; Walter, deceased; Mrs. Delilah Richardson lives in Republic township; Benjamin lives in Christian county; Dave lives in Oklahoma; Earthy, wife of E. Clark, in Greene county; Bertha, wife of E. M. Mullikin, lives in Springfield; Virgil lives at home; the two youngest children died in infancy, unnamed.

Politically Mr. McNabb is a Progressive. Fraternally he belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. Mrs. McNabb is a member of the Royal Neighbors, and they both hold membership in the Baptist church.

Personally Mr. McNabb has inherited many of the winning characteristics of his sterling Scotch ancestors, such as determination, courage, industry, fortitude and unswerving honesty, and these together with other equally admirable traits have combined to make him a successful man and a good citizen.

[1488-1490]


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