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

WILLIAM PENN MURRAY. The deft shuttle which weaves the web of human life and human destiny, constantly and ceaselessly flies backward and forward, and into the vast and checkered fabric is woven the individuality, the efforts, ambitions and achievements of each man--of all men. Within this web may be defined the lines of personality, be they those that lend the beautiful crystal sheen of honest merit and worthy effort, or dark, curving and deflecting ones, which penetrate warp and woof, and mar and efface the composite beauty of their darkened threads. The life record of the late William Penn Murray, for many years one of the most progressive agriculturists and stock men of Franklin township, Greene county, indicates that the fabric of which his individuality was woven was of the best and purest, and consequently he left behind him "that which is rather to be chosen than much riches--a good name."

Mr. Murray was born in Wyandotte county, Ohio, June 4, 1867. He was a son of David C. and Hulda (Dow) Murray. David Murray, who was also a native of the locality in which our subject was born, grew to manhood, was educated and married there, and in 1869 he removed from the old Buckeye state to Greene county, Missouri, with his family, locating in Robberson township, on a farm of three hundred and twenty acres which he purchased and on which he followed general farming and handling live stock in a successful manner. He became well known here and was considered a man who was uniformly fair in all his dealings with his fellow men, and here his death occurred in 1873, when our subject was six years old. His wife, who was also, a native of Wyandotte county, Ohio, also died on the home farm in Greene. county, being summoned to her rest in 1879.

William Penn Murray was two years old when his parents brought him to Greene county and here he grew to manhood on the homestead where he worked when a boy, and he received his early education in the common schools. February 18, 1891, he married Jennie Stiver, who was born January 5, 1870, a daughter of Isaac and Susannah (Horner) Stiver. Isaac Stiver was born March 16, 1826, in Pennsylvania. After his marriage he moved to Elkhart county, Indiana, and was living there when Mrs. Jennie Murray was born, and there he engaged in farming for twenty-two years, then sold out and removed with his family to Greene county, Missouri, locating seven miles, northeast of Springfield, buying one hundred and twenty acres of good land, and here followed general farming until his death, July 24, 1897. He was a Republican and a Lutheran. His wife was born December 30, 1835, near Dayton, Ohio, and her death occurred on the home farm in Greene county, June 20, 1908. To Isaac Stiver and wife twelve children were born, namely: Daniel J. lives in Newcastle, Indiana; Jacob M. is deceased; Louis J is practicing dentistry in Ft. Wayne, Indiana; Mrs. Mary L. Risk, of Amsterdam, New York; Isaac N. is deceased; Wesley M. lives in Campbell township,. Greene county; William H. lives in Indianapolis; Jennie, widow of the subject of this memorial review; Harrison G. lives in Springfield, Missouri; James, is living but his address is not known at this writing; Edward and Calvin J. are both residing in Springfield.

William P., Murray devoted his active life to general farming and handling live stock. He owned a valuable and well kept place of one hundred and twenty acres in Franklin township; however, his principal business was raising, buying and trading in livestock, especially cattle, and in this he was very successful, being an exceptionally good judge of all kinds of stock and dealing honestly with his fellow men so that he retained their confidence and good will. He owned over one hundred head of good cattle at the time, of his death, March 9, 1911.

Mr. Murray's family consisted of three children, namely: Mrs. Mazie Newton, born November 20, 1891, wife of R. H. Newton, first lieutenant of No. 2, Springfield fire department, of Springfield; Ralph, born January 15, 1893, died October 16, 1893; and Norman B., born September 23, 1895, who is living with his mother on the home farm which he operates.

Politically, Mr. Murray was a Democrat and served for some time on school board. While he was not a member of any church he was religious at heart and a good honest man in every respect, a kind husband and an indulgent father and a man whom his neighbors admired and respected. He was superintendent of Sunday school at Pleasant Valley for, several years and a man who delighted in extending a helping hand to those in need, and he will long be greatly missed from his neighborhood.


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