John M. Crist

Pages 674-675
As one of the best known farmers and stockmen in this county may be mentioned Mr. Crist, who was born in Perry County, Ind, October 22, 1853, son of James M. Crist and Elizabeth McFall. The father was also a native of the same State, and of German descent, his father coming from Germany to America during the Revolution, and taking part in that event. James M. Crist came to Arkansas in 1856 but returned to Indiana in 1860 on a visit, and during his absence the War of the Rebellion broke out, which made it impossible for him to return home. John M. was reared and trained to farm life and spent the greater portion of his boyhood days in Indiana, receiving his education at the Bloomington College of Bloomington Ohio. On November 30, 1879 he was united in marriage to Miss Josephine Klingelhoeffer, whose parents were among the earliest settlers of Central Arkansas. [The father's biography will be found in the history of Perry County.] She was the youngest of eleven children in the family. Three children were born to this marriage: Franklin (born November 29, 1881, died in 1883), John Walter (born October 22, 1884), and Agnes (born October 5, 1887). Mr. Crist had previously learned the carpenter's trade and engaged on the steamer Maumelle, as ship's carpenter, running from Little Rock to Pine Bluff. He next went on board the Marling Spud, and served in the same capacity for about eighteen months. His next venture was in lumber rafting from the woods of the Fourche Valley to Little Rock, where he found a market for his lumber and followed this business successfully for three years. In 1884 he was nominated and elected county surveyor, filling the office for two years with the greatest credit. He has made his home on a farm of 160 acres in Perry Township, which he purchased in 1880, and has seventy-five acres under cultivation, with five good tenant houses, besides his own comfortable dwelling. He has also erected a steam cotton gin, which he is operating successfully and comtemplates building another frame house. In the spring of 1888 he erected a shingle-mill and manufactured that important building article quite extensively, but sold that property in 1889. Mr. and Mrs. Crist are members of the Missionary Baptist Church, of which the former is clerk and also superintendent of the Sunday School. He is anxious to see the rapid development of Perry County, and lends his valuable aid to all enterprises having that effect, and is one of the most popular citizens of that county. Politically he is a Democrat.