Sgt William Hines “Willis” Furbush


Sgt William Hines “Willis” Furbush

Carroll County, Kentucky, USA
Death 3 Sep 1902 (aged 61–62)
Marion County, Indiana, USA
Burial Marion, Grant County, Indiana, USA
Plot Section 1, Row 6, Plot 774
Memorial ID 2861786 View Source

Commissary Sergt., CO. H., 42nd INF., US CLD, TROOPS, UNION ARMY, CIVIL WAR

Furbush remarried, after his first marriage to Susan Dickey had apparently ended. He married eighteen-year-old schoolteacher Emma S. Owens on April 7, 1874, in Memphis, Tennessee. She later died of yellow fever in Tenn. His daughter Eve, died of dysentery a few days later

Mr. Furbush moved to Helena, Arkansas in 1862 where he was elected two terms in the Arkansas House of Representatives, 1873–74 (Phillips County) and 1879–80 (Lee County).
appointed sheriff by Republican Governor Elisha Baxter. Furbush won reelection as sheriff twice and served from 1873 to 1878. During his term, he adopted a policy of "fusion," a post-Reconstruction power-sharing compromise between Democrats and Republicans. Furbush was originally elected as a Republican, but he switched to the Democratic Party at the end of his time as sheriff.
In 1878, Furbush was again elected to the Arkansas House. His election is noteworthy because he was elected as a black Democrat in an election season notorious for white intimidation of black and Republican voters in black-majority eastern Arkansas. Furbush is the first known black Democrat elected to the Arkansas General Assembly.

Occupations he held were a barber, assayer in , photographer, taught music, lawyer, co-founded the African American newspaper National Democrat

He was honorably discharged in January 1866 from the Forty-second Colored Infantry at Columbus, Ohio.


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