Pictorial and Genealogical Record
of Greene County, Missouri

Together with Bibliographies of Prominent Men of Other Portions of the State, Both Living and Dead


JAMES G. WOOD. A large class of the farmers of Greene County, Mo., lead such modest and retiring lives as to be seldom heard of outside their own township. They are doing fine work in their own community, but do not care to mingle in the more public matters of political life, and devote all their time and energies to the cultivation of their farms and the development of the resources of their vicinity. Such men deserve more mention than they ordinarily receive, and it is a pleasure to here present one of them in the person of James G. Wood, who has been a resident of Greene County since 1852. He was born in Huntsville, Ala., February 24, 1832, the eldest son of John Wood, whose sketch appears herein. His early days were passed in assisting his father about the cotton mills and upon the farm, and also learned the occupation of tanning, of which branch of his father's business he had the management. He attended such schools as were in vogue in his youth in Tennessee, and possessing a bright and active mind his opportunities were improved, and he obtained sufficient knowledge to fit him for the active duties of life,. At the age of twenty years he came to Greene County, Mo., and in 1852 began farming on Grand Prairie, in which business he prospered until the opening of the Civil War. He then went with his father to Madison County, Ark., and while there be started a tannery, which he managed up to 1864 when he returned to Greene County, and a few years later located on the farm where he now resides, which was presented to him by his father. It is without question one of the finest farms in the county, located only four miles southeast of Springfield, and every nook and cranny of it is kept with the utmost neatness, no one portion of it being neglected for another. The estate comprises 187 acres and is well improved with good buildings, and substantial and neat fences. He is engaged in general farming, and he has inherited many of his father's fine mental and physical qualities, he has been successful above the average, but, unlike many who are possessed of wealth, he is extremely liberal in the use of his means and does not hesitate to aid generously causes which meet his approval. He is generous to those who are unfortunate in the great battle of life, and is ever ready to extend a helping hand to those less fortunate than himself. In 1857 he was united in marriage to Miss Susan Dishongh, daughter of Henderson and Sarah (Hail) Dishongh, the former of whom was born in North Carolina in 1812, a son of Augustin Dishongh, who came from France and took up his home in North Carolina, prior to the opening of the Revolutionary War. During the progress of this struggle he ferried Washington's army across the river where he lived. He died in 1847 at the age of eighty-two years in Giles County, Tenn., where he had moved at a very early day. Henderson Dishongh was the youngest of his sons, and he was killed in 1847 by lightning in Giles County. He was a mechanic by trade, and for a long time was engaged in the manufacture of cotton cloth, but at the same time followed the calling of a mill-wright; in fact, he was an exceedingly shrewd and successful business man. He was a useful, law-abiding and public-spirited citizen, and in politics was a Whig. He was the inventor of one of the first improved cotton spinning machines ever made, and as a mechanic possessed more than ordinary genius. He married his wife in Tennessee, she being a daughter of Butler and Elizabeth Hail, who were early pioneers of Tennessee, and was related to Dr. William Hail, a surgeon in the Mexican War. The wife of Henderson Dishongh died in 1850 in Giles County, Tenn., having become the mother of six children: George B., who resides in Lawrence County, Tenn., is engaged in the manufacture of cotton goods, is married and is a well-to-do man; Augustin, who died at the age of forty-three years, was the owner of a mill at Pulaski, Tenn.; Elizabeth is the wife of J. K. Speer, of Indianapolis, Ind.; Susan is the wife of Mr. Wood, the subject of this sketch; Sarah A. is the wife of James R. Gilmore, of Alabama, and Martha J., who became the wife of Mr. Foster, of Greene County, Mo., is deceased. Mrs. Wood was born in Giles County, Tenn., June 5, 1839, and from the time she was eight until she attained her seventeenth year, she attended the common schools of her native county. She was then taken to Lawrence County, and upon reaching womanhood was married to Mr. Wood, by whom she has two children: Sarah E. born June 11, 1859, and died April 15, 1862, and Susan J., who was born August 15, 1861. The latter was educated in the Springfield High School, and is now the wife of B. L. Routt, the most prominent groceryman of Springfield, and by him is the mother of three children. Mr. and Mrs. Wood have long been connected with the Christian Church and have a wide circle of acquaintances and friends with whom they are very popular. Politically Mr. Wood is a Democrat, but be has never desired to figure in the political affairs of his section, being content to exercise his right of franchise. He is a very useful citizen, and will without doubt long remain a resident of the section where so many years of his life have been spent.

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