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Below is a sample of a family biography included in the Chariton County, Missouri History published in 1883 by National Historical Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details in a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

MOSES E. BUSHNELL, a thrifty and energetic young farmer and stockholder of Cunningham township, is a native of Vermont, born in Bennington county, April 27, 1857. His grandfather, Moses Bushnell, had a family of three boys and five girls, but one of the sons, Henry, died in youth. Three of the daughters now reside in Vermont. One of his sons was Harvey Bushnell, the father of the subject of this sketch. His brother, David, immigrated to California in 1850, remained there four years, then returning to his native State where he engaged in farming until 1865, when, and for eight years thereafter, he was occupied in the hotel business. Subsequently he served one term in the State Legislature to which he was elected in 1867. He has since purchased a large and beautiful farm two miles from Bennington, Vermont, upon which he now resides. Harvey Bushnell was born in Bennington county in 1835. His early days were spent on his father's farm and at school until 1852, when he emigrated to the gold fields of California in company with his brother, who had returned home on a short visit. He remained there three years, returned to Vermont and in 1856 married Miss Ruth Mason, daughter of Christopher and Lear Mason. Buying a farm he then engaged in farming until 1864, when he embarked in merchandising, continuing it until 1867, when he emigrated to Missouri, locating in Linn county, where he followed farming and stock raising until his death in January, 1882. His family consisted of three boys and three girls, but one daughter, Annie, died at the age of nine years. Moses E. grew up on the farm of his father, and in youth had the advantages of the schools of the neighborhood. February 13, 1878, he was married to Miss Sarah M., daughter of John and Sarah Brewer, natives of Pennsylvania, but who emigrated to Illinois in 1856. Mrs. Bushnell was born February 8, 1860. Mr. and Mrs. Bushnell have two children: Bertha May, born June 24, 1880, and William Harvey, born September 4, 1882. After his marriage Mr. Bushnell settled on a farm in Linn county, where he was engaged in farming for two years. He then removed to Dakota, locating in Grand Forks county, but remained there only a year, returning to Missouri in the spring of 1881, and buying his present farm in Chariton county. He has 160 acres of fine land and has it comfortably and substantially improved. He has all the worthy characteristics of the thrifty New England farmer, and will doubtless become one of the substantial farmers and solid men of his township. He and wife are members of the Methodist Church.

This family biography is one of 501 biographies included in the History of Chariton County, Missouri published by National Historical Company in 1883.  For the complete description, click here: Chariton County, Missouri History, Genealogy, and Maps

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