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W D Johnson


Posted By: County Coordinator
Date: 3/20/2009 at 01:41:12

W D Johnson, For many years Mr Johnson has been numbered among the prominent and progressive citizens of Boone and has been the promoter of many of its leading business enterprises. His connection with any undertaking insures the prosperous outcome of the same for it is in his nature to carry forward to a successful completion whatever he undertakes. He has obtained for himself an enviable reputation as a careful man of business and in his dealings is known for his prompt and honorable methods. He is today actively associated with the coal trade as president of the W D Johnson Coal Company.
Mr Johnson was born in Campbell county, Tennessee March 15, 1833, and is the son of John and
Rosa (Atkins) Johnson, both of whom were natives of Tennessee, the former born in 1806, the latter in 1810.The paternal grandfather John Johnson served his country as a soldier in the Revolutionary war and again entered the army in 1812 to preserve the rights of the new republic against the encroachment of British oppression. The parents of our subject were married in the state of their nativity and by this union were born fourteen children. Orlena, Loraine and Polly all deceased, W D, Richard M who has also passed away, Parthenia, who is living in Illinois, Elizabeth who makes her home in the same state, James, John and S G all residents of Illinois, Thomas deceased, David a resident of Story county, Iowa and Nancy deceased. It was in the years 1833 that the family left the south and took up their abode in Cass county, Illinois where the father followed the occupation of farming throughout his remaining days, his death occurring 1865. His wife long surviving him passed away in 1898.
W D Johnson of this review was reared upon the home farm until seventeen years of age when he went to Oregon but only remained there for a short time after which he returned to the old home farm in Illinois. This trip was made in 1854 and leaving St Joseph, Missouri, he proceeded to Salt Lake assisting in driving a flock of sheep across the country. He continued in the far west until 1856 and then returned to the old homestead. In 1859, however he again went west making his way to Denver and to Pikes Peak. In 1860 he had charge of a train of five hundred wagon and was accompanied by fifteen hundred people upon a trip across the plains and through the mountain passes to Oregon. The party had several encounters with Indians and all but one of Mr Johnsonís companions deserted him. For six years he remained in the northwest, visiting Oregon, Idaho and Washington, where for six years he was engaged in mining operations. In 1867 he went to Texas where he continued for seven years. In 1881, with a partner he bought eight-seven thousand acres of land in the lone Star state and extensively engaged in the raising of Texas cattle. In 1883 however he traded on-half of his land for cattle.
On November 1, 1871 Mr Johnson was joined in wedlock to Eliza A Worsham who was born in Missouri and died in 1875.Their one child Ira D Johnson born August 12, 1872, died July 15, 1897, leaving a wife and two children who are interested in the W D Johnson Coal Company.
Mr Johnson of this review gives his political support to the Democracy having adhered to that party since casting his first presidential vote for Franklin Pierce. He is widely and favorably known throughout this portion of the state. The difficulties which he has had to encounter in his own business career have made him ever ready to extend a helping hand to those who try to aid themselves and in his business he ever rewards faithful services on the part of his employees when opportunity offers. He has been conspicuous among his associates not only for his proper and honorable business methods. There is no esoteric phase in his career, his life being an open scroll that will bear the closest scrutiny.

1902 Boone County History Book


Boone Biographies maintained by Jan Bony.
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