JAMES M. EARLY was born in Caldwell, now Lyon County, July 30, 1838. His father, James Early, was for many years a regular pilot and captain of keel and flat-boats, which were the only means of shipping on the Western waters. He was a Kentuckian by birth and was known as Maj. Early, having served in the regular State musters. He was engaged principally in buying up stock, etc., and shipping the same to New Orleans on boats, which he either owned or controlled, and upon his return would bring sugars and provisions, which the people here needed. He was an experienced pilot, and oftimes beside his own boats, he would take with him and pilot other vessels bound for the same place. His wife, Rebecca (George) Early was also a native of Kentucky. To them were born twelve children, of whom three are living: Caroline, wife of James Holland of Trigg County, this State; Mary C., married to Leander Baker of this county; James M. the subject of this sketch. The last received his education at the Bethlehem, Harmony and Cumberland Academies, Caldwell County, this State, after which he taught school and did a large amount of surveying in this county. He then engaged in farming, and two years later purchased and removed to his present place of 240 acres. He erected the first business house in Lamasco, and merchandised there during the war. He has since devoted his attention mostly to farming, and the saw-mill business. He has also a brick yard, which gives employment to some ten hands, and is producing a superior brick for building purposes. He has also devoted, for the past ten years, considerable attention to tobacco dealing. He is one of the leading spirits of the country, and is actively interested in the material development of it. He was first married to Miss Jennette A. Dunning, a daughter of Levi and Jennette M. Dunning; she died in 1863, leaving one child, Alva, who married David Porter. Mr. Early was subsequently married to Miss Fannie E. Smith, a daughter of Ransford Smith. Of this union there are seven children living: Lola, Walter, Kate, Maggie, Clarence, Firman and Nellie.
Source: J. H. Battle, W. H. Perrin, & G. C. Kniffin. Kentucky. A History of the State. Louisville, KY, Chicago, IL: Battey, 1885. Page 853.