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Nancy Belle Rainwater and Armstrong Hendricks

Nancy Belle Rainwater and Armstrong Hendricks

Nancy Belle Rainwater was born in Arkansas on 5 May 1857, the eleventh of the twelve children of Matthew Rainwater and Mahala Snapp. She spent her childhood in Washington County, Arkansas.

On 13 May 1875, she married Armstrong Hendricks, a farmer and blacksmith. They had four children: James Pressley, born March 1876; Edgar Austin, born November 1879; William Perry, born April 1886; and Leona B., born May 1889. The family is found in both the 1880 and 1900 census records in Prairie Grove, Washington Co., Arkansas.

Armstrong Hendricks died in 1920 and Nancy died eight years later. They are buried with one of their sons, Edgar Austin Hendricks, in Prairie Grove Cemetery in Washington Co., Arkansas.

In 1889, Goodspeed Publishing Company of Chicago published a volume of biographies of the local worthies and notables of Benton, Washington, Carroll, Madison, Crawford, Franklin and Sebastian Counties. Armstrong Hendricks was among them, and his entry is transcribed below. The volume obviously went to press before the couple's fourth child was born.


"Armstrong Hendricks, farmer, stock raiser and mechanic, of Prairie Grove Township, Washington Co., Ark., was born in Pulaski County, Ky., November 22, 1836, being a son of Green and Rutha (Hall) Hendricks, who were born, reared and married in their native State. They came to Arkansas about 1838, locating on the farm on which Armstrong Hendricks now resides, and owns, and here the father's death occurred in 1840, and the mother's in 1850. They were the parents of two sons: Armstrong and Gibson H.

The former was reared in, and at the breaking out of the war enlisted in Col. Brooks' regiment, serving with him two years, and the following two years served on detached duty. He was in a number of engagements, but escaped unhurt, and after the cessation of hostilities returned home and began working at the blacksmith's trade, which he had learned previous to the war, continuing the same about three years, after which he began improving his home farm, which consists of 153 acres, with about seventy-five acres under good cultivation, on which is a good two-story residence. Besides this he has another good farm of 100 acres. He is doing well, and his farms yield him a comfortable competency. May 13, 1875, his marriage with Miss Nancy B. Rainwaters was celebrated. She was born in (Arkansas), and is a daughter of Matthew Rainwaters, who was formerly from Tennessee. Mr. and Mrs. Hendricks are the parents of three sons: James Pressley, Edgar Austin and William Perry."

Photo and biographical information supplied by Robert Gerstenberg. Additional information from "History of Benton, Washington, Carroll, Madison, Crawford, Franklin, and Sebastian Counties, Arkansas", The Goodspeed Publishing Co., Chicago, 1889.