Contributed by Charlene Holland

Biographical & Historical Memoirs of Western Arkansas
The Southern Publishing Company, Chicago and Nashville, 1891.


      The name of Sullivan is one of the most influential in Scott County, Ark., and Dr. Sullivan among its most talented physicians, has obtained a reputation placing him in the front rank of the medical fraternity. He is also associated with the drug interests of Waldron and as a businessman is doing well. He was born in Tennessee in 1849, being the fifth of twelve children born to Nathan and Mary (Ross) Sullivan, the former born in Tennessee and the latter in Alabama. The father was a minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church South for forty-two years, his services for his Master being principally in the State of Tennessee, where he was presiding elder of his district for many years. He died in 1880, after a useful and well-spent life, his widow still surviving him. The paternal grandfather, Rev. Jacob Sullivan, was a pioneer of Wilson and Warren Counties, Tenn., from North Carolina, but was a native of Maryland. He preached the gospel in Tennessee until his death in 1866 at Mount Zion, in Tipton County, at the age of eighty-eight years. The maternal grandfather, William Ross, was one of the early settlers of Shelby County, Tenn., at which time there were but three houses at the present site of Memphis. He became a large land owner on the Hatchie river and on this land passed from life in 1867, or 1868. Dr. J. O. A. Sullivan spent his youth in Gibson County, Tenn., and received his education in Andrew College. In 1863 he became a member of Company G, Twelfth Tennessee Cavalry Confederate States Army, and was in the battles of Fort Pillow, Memphis and surrendered at Greensboro, N. C. After his return home he began the study of medicine in 1867 under the preceptorship of Dr. J. J. Crisp. After a thorough preparation he entered the Medical University of Tennessee, from which he graduated in 1868, after which he at once began practicing in Gibson County. He was married in February 1869, to Miss Georgiana McLeary, a native of Tennessee, and daughter of James and Addie McLeary, their births occurring in North and South Carolina, respectively. Both parents were of Scotch descent, the maiden name of the mother being Blair. Her ancestors became well known during Revolutionary times, her mother's family being well known people of South Carolina. In 1874 Dr. Sullivan and his wife came to Arkansas and settled in Waldron, where he began practicing, in connection with which, in 1881, he opened a drug establishment, but soon sold out, only to re-engage in the business in 1887, his establishment being well fitted up and excellently managed. He has always been active in schoolwork; for years has been a director. He is also deeply interested in the political affairs of the country, and has always worked for the success of the Democratic Party. He is now serving his second term as secretary of the County Medical Society and is a member of the board. Socially he belongs to Waldron Lodge No. 93 of the I.O.O.F., and in the Grand Lodge of the State he holds the rank of grand guardian. He also belongs to the A.F. & A.M. Dr. Sullivan lost his estimable wife in 1878, she having borne him three children: Lester Lee, Lenora Adella, and Josie (who died at the age of twenty-two months). His second marriage took place in 1878, his wife being Miss Ella Harris, a native of this State, and daughter of Virgil Harris, a Tennesseean, who removed to Texas in 1832 and a few years later to Arkansas, dying in Waldron in May, 1889, when seventy-nine years of age. The Doctor and his present wife have six children: Mary Emma, Andrew N., Clara, Robert Toombs and Stonewall Jackson (twins) and Ada. The Doctor is the owner of a fine farm of 400 acres in Faulkner County, of which 60 acres are under cultivation. He also has a good home in Waldron, which he erected in 1879, and besides this owns other valuable town property.

Return to Scott County Biographies
Copyright 2003-2009 by Delaine Edwards.
All rights reserved.