Copied from Goodspeed's Northwestern Arkansas, Biographical Appendix for Franklin County.
George W. Austin was born in the State of New York on the 26th of May, 1849, and in 1851 removed with his parents to Central Illinois, and resided in different portions of the State until 1874. In 1865 he began learning the printing business, and has worked at that occupation in different capacities up to the present time. In 1874 he removed to Kentucky, and started a paper called the Ballard News, at Blandville, in Ballard County, and the following year removed to Northwest Missouri, and at the end of two years returned to Kentucky. In the spring of 1876 he came to Arkansas, and worked as foreman of the Western Immigrant, at Dardanelle, Yell County, for two years, removing from that town to Clinton, the county seat of Van Buren County, where he became foreman on the Clinton Banner. In 1880 he went to Little Rock, and took charge of the mechanical department of the True Democrat, a weekly paper, which was removed to Fort Smith and consolidated with the Fort Smith Independent, under the name of the Independent True Democrat. While at Fort Smith he was foreman consecutively of the Morning Herald, the Evening News and the Evening Times. Mr. Austin was the first compositor employed on the Fort Smith Journal, and worked there until the 1st of May, 1888, when he started the Altus Advance, which is a breezy and thriving little Democratic paper. While residing in Kentucky in 1874 he was married to Miss Leila C. Stom, who died August 16, 1882, while Mr. Austin was in Little Rock, leaving three children: Harry S., Willis, and Herbert, who died soon after his mother's death. Mr. Austin is a son of Aaron and Annie E. (Vanderkar) Austin, the former a native of York State, and a member of the religious sect of Quakers by rearing, but afterward became a member of the Methodist Church. He was a farmer, and died in Nodaway County, Mo. The mother died November 14, 1888.