JAMES H. DUNCAN. Among the noted and representative men of the flourishing city of Springfield, Mo., stands the name of J. H. Duncan, who is the present prosecuting attorney of Greene County. Perhaps no member of the legal fraternity enjoys a mote extensive practice or is more widely known than this gentleman. He came originally from the Blue Grass State, born in Georgetown, Scott County, January 8, 1854, and is a son of Harvey and Mary E. (Bowden) Duncan. The father was also a native of Kentucky, born in Madison County, and is of Scotch-Irish descent, his ancestors emigrating to this country at an early date. For many years the father made his home in Springfield but later moved to Canton, Ill., where he resides at the present time. Mrs. Duncan was a sister of Ex-Judge James H. Bowden of Kentucky. She died in the year 1862. Of the five children born to this worthy couple, only two besides our subject are now living: Prof. S. P. Duncan, a resident of Coldwater, Kan., and probate judge of his county, is a prominent attorney of his city, and Mrs. Allie B. Gardener, wife of J. B. Gardener resides in Canton, Ill.. The early recollections of our subject were of his native State but when the war broke out he moved with his parents to Evansville, Ind., from there to Canton, Ill., in 1866, where he remained for five or six years. He was educated in the Evansville and Canton high schools, and also attended the McGree College in Macon County, Mo., thus securing good educational advantages. After leaving school he became a teacher and while thus occupied he took up the study of law. Later he entered the law office of Cravens & Bray and was admitted to the bar in 1876. The same year be began practicing his profession in Springfield and in 1878 was elected city recorder and re-elected in 1879. For four years after this he held the office of justice of the peace, was elected assistant prosecuting attorney and later prosecuting attorney. Mr. Duncan has been chairman of the Republican committee of Springfield, for eight years, and has ever taken an active part in politics. He began giving his undivided attention to the practice of law in 1882, and since that time all his mind has been centered on that and his duties as prosecuting attorney. Since serving in that capacity he has prosecuted a large number of murder cases and is classed among the foremost attorneys of the city. Socially he is a member of the A. O. U. W., Lodge No. 402, Springfield, and a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Mr. Duncan has a pleasant home at No. 710 West Elm street, and this is presided over by his chosen companion, formerly Miss Levie A. Carson, a native of St. Louis and the daughter of Henry S. Carson of Springfield. Three children have been born to this union, as follows: Henry H., Harvey L. and Paul B. Mrs. Duncan holds membership in the Baptist Church and is a lady of intelligence and good judgment. Mr. Duncan has ever taken a deep interest in politics, has been a delegate to all the Republican conventions, and is one of the influential young men of the county.
Springfield-Greene County Library