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 M. SISK. The soil is the limiting factor in crop production. Persistent and thorough cultivation depletes the soil, more and more in proportion to the size of the crop removed. Feeding some plant food back into it is necessary to sustain next year's production. The best cultivation is advisable for each year's immediate return. A farmer might as well expect to continually check against his account at the bank and expect to always have a balance there, as to continually crop his land without returning any plant food to the soil and expect to have continually fertile fields. One of the progressive farmers of Greene county who well understands this fact and is making a success as a general farmer because of well-applied principles is John M. Sisk, of Boone township.

Mr. Sisk was born in Arkansas, October 19, 1856. He is a son of Abner Sisk, who was born in Alabama, in 1829. He devoted his life to farming. During the, Civil war he served three years in the Union army. After the close of hostilities he removed to Greene county, Missouri, locating eight miles north of Springfield, where he raised one crop, then moved to within a mile and a half of Ash Grove. He spent the remainder of his life on various farms in Boone township, dying in 1909. He married Elizabeth Sparks, a daughter of Solomon Sparks, a native of eastern Tennessee, from which country he removed to Arkansas in an early day.

John M. Sisk grew to manhood on his father's farm, where he worked hard when a boy, and he received a common school education in the schools of Greene county, having been young when his parents removed with him from Arkansas to this locality. At the age of twenty years he began farming for himself, later engaging in the grocery and bakery business in Ash Grove. Selling out, he then engaged in the livery and transfer business there; then, after a few years, he sold the latter business and operated a dry goods store. About this period he erected three substantial brick store buildings in Ash Grove. He was successful in whatever he turned his attention to, and became one of the leading business men of that city. He purchased eighty acres at one time, and later one hundred and thirty-seven acres south of Ash Grove. In October, 1896, he traded two of the brick buildings in on three hundred and twenty-eight acres, about two miles west of that city. He is still living on this excellent, well-kept and highly improved farm, one of the best in this part of the county. He is engaged in general farming on an extensive scale; also handles large numbers of live stock from year to year. He is making a specialty of an excellent grade of cattle and also of Ohio Improved Chester hogs. He has a valuable peach orchard of forty acres, also a few acres of pears. He markets his products principally at Fort Scott, Kansas. He has an attractive home in the midst, of beautiful surroundings, and there are to be seen on his farm many substantial and convenient outbuildings. Everything denotes thrift and that a man of energy, intelligence and good taste is at the helm.

Mr. Sisk was married on October 12, 1881, to Amanda H. Likins, a daughter of Charles H. Likins, who located in southwestern Missouri before the Civil war. During the Civil war he served in the Union army in the three-year service.

To Mr. and Mrs. Sisk five children have been born, three sons and two daughters, namely: One child died in infancy; Charles, now sixteen years of age; John, who is thirteen years old; Pauline, who has passed her eleventh birthday; and Wayne, who is seven years old. Mr. Sisk is giving his children every advantage. In order to give them the advantages of good schools he lives in Ash Grove during the winter months, removing back to the farm for the crop season.

Politically, he is a Republican, and while he has always been active and influential in the affairs of his city and county, he has never been a seeker after the emoluments of office. Fraternally, he belongs to the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and Modern Woodmen. He is a man who, has always enjoyed a good reputation, like his honored father before him, and he is an agreeable man to meet, either in his own pleasant home or in public. The family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.

[1616-1618]


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