J. R. FINLEY, Crittenden County, was born October 13, 1845, in Union County, Ky., and is a son of Rev. I. R. and Helen (Blue) Finley, the father a native of Baltimore, Md., and the mother of Kentucky. The Finley family came originally from Scotland, and settled in Maryland; there subject's grandfather, Isham Finley, died many years ago. Subject's maternal ancestors were Virginians. His grandfather, John Blue, was born in that State in 1784, and died in Union County, Ky., September, 22, 1840. Rev. I. R. Finley was born in 1812. He came to Kentucky in his early manhood, and settled in Union County, where he was married and there he lived a short time, afterward moving to Oldham County, which was his home for a number of years. He was a distinguished minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and an able educator, having had charge of a number of colleges throughout the Southern States, among which may be mentioned, Athens, La Grange, Murfreesboro, Bardstown and several others. He died in Virginia, July 27, 1882. Subject's mother was born in Union County, Ky., January 17, 1817, I and died at Bardstown about 1850. J. R. Finley is the fourth child of a family of seven children born to the above. At the breaking out of the war he entered the Southern army, enlisting in the Eighteenth Virginia Volunteer Infantry in 1862. His regiment was in Gen. Longstreet's division and saw some of the hardest fighting that took place during the war, having been actively engaged in the eastern campaign until the close of the war, and surrendering with Lee in 1865. Among the battles in which Mr. Finley took part, were the following: Seven Pines, Gettysburg, battles of the Wilderness, the Peninsula campaign. At the close of the war, Mr. Finley located in Warren County, N. C., and engaged in the merchandise business, which he continued for fifteen months, and in 1866 he moved to Marion, and commenced the study of the law, under the instruction of John Blue. He was admitted to the bar in 1868, and from that time until 1881, was engaged in the practice of his profession, in Crittenden and adjoining counties. In 1870 he was elected county attorney, the duties of which office he discharged for four years. In 1881 he retired from practice and gave his attention to farming, in which he has since been engaged. He was married August 18, 1870, to Elizabeth G. Gregory, daughter of James and Amanda (White) Gregory, of Crittenden County. Mr. and Mrs. Finley have a family of five children, viz.: Percy B., Hortense, Fannie, Lucy and Arthur, all of whom are living. Mr. Finley belongs to the Masonic fraternity and is a supporter of the Democratic party.


Source:  J. H. Battle, W. H. Perrin, & G. C. Kniffin. Kentucky. A History of the State. Louisville, KY, Chicago, IL: Battey, 1885. Page 728.