John Slavens, one of the leading citizens of Jackson County, Ohio, was born on the 9th of January, 1852, and is a son of Reuben and Nancy (Stephenson) Slavens, and grandson of John Slavens, who was a Virginian and died in Henry County, Mo. Reuben was also born in Virginia, and when a young man moved to Ohio, locating in Jackson County, where he met and married Nancy Stephenson, a native of the State, and made that his home until 1858, then coming to Henry County, Mo., where they have since made their home. The father learned the millerís trade in his youth, but only worked at it a short time after coming to Missouri, then began farming and stock-raising, and as such has been reasonably successful. In 1863 he enlisted in the Federal service, being on active duty until the close of the war. He and wife are members of the Missionary Baptist Church, and he is a Republican and always supports the principles of that party. Mrs. Slavens is a daughter of Samuel Stephenson, who was also a Virginian, and died in Jackson County, Ohio. John Slavens, our subject, has two sisters: Martha, wife of William H. Burnsides, of Henry County, Mo.; and Mary, who died when six years of age. John was educated in Henry County, and remained at home until eighteen years of age, and was afterward married to Miss Mollie Hill, a daughter of Alexander and Elbina Hill. She was born in Moniteau County, Mo., July 7, 1853, and she and Mr. Slavens became the parents of six children, five of whom are living: Ella, Harry, Alma R., Myrtle and Pearl. Tilla died when four years of age. Mr. Slavens is in good circumstances financially, and since 1883 has resided on his farm in Barton County. He is a Republican in politics, and he and family worship in the Missionary Baptist Church.
History of Hickory, Polk, Cedar, Dade, and Barton Counties, Missouri
Goodspeed Publishing Company, Chicago, 1889.