Edward McKendree Bounds (1835-1913), Methodist minister and devotional writer, was born in Shelby County, Missouri. He studied law and was admitted to the bar at 21 years of age. After practicing law for three years, he began preaching for the Methodist Episcopal Church. After the Civil War, Bounds served as pastor of churches in Tennessee and Alabama, and in St. Louis, Missouri. He spent the last 17 years of his life with his family in Washington, Georgia, writing his Spiritual Life Books.