Other County Histories | Civil War | 1886 | 1913 Vol. 1 | 1916 | Depression |
One Hundred Years in Livingston County

Published by the Livingston County Bicentennial Agriculture Committee. July, 1976.


Reprinted with permission.

Dedicated to the people who came here more than one hundred years ago and made it a better home for those who followed.



Honoring 100-year farms developed as one of the projects of the Agricultural Bicentennial Committee. Here we cannot really celebrate a bicentennial. No doubt white men had been in the country 200 years ago, but there were no settlers. However, we can recognize the 100th anniversary of many farms. It was necessary to collect names and dates from the families that own these farms. We saw this as an excellent opportunity to gather some history of these farms and families and record it in permanent form. The families have cooperated beyond our expectations. Perhaps this will cause us to have greater appreciation for those who came before us and generate in us deeper pride in our heritage.

Having a 100-year farm is the result of a combination of circumstances. Not having one is due sometimes to circumstances beyond a family’s control. Many early families still living here do not own the land of their fathers. Other families moved on or their branch withered and died. Many of the young people that grew up on farms left the farms for what they considered greener pastures. The families that remained are the ones that contributed a great deal to the development of the area. They gave an acre of ground for a schoolhouse, a church, or cemetery. They helped build these things, also the roads, bridges, and towns.

The early settlers had in common, to a large degree, certain desirable characteristics. They had faith in their God to see them through and to provide for their needs, and faith in themselves to deal with any circumstances. They had courage to leave familiar surroundings and loved ones; ability to make a living from the land. They were good neighbors, honest, straight-forward, and men of their word. Had they been otherwise, they would not have been welcome in the community. They were people who accepted conditions and had a desire to make them better. They gave more than they received and left this world a little better than they found it. They loved the land, the change of seasons, the hills and valleys. They considered this area one of the best spots of God’s creation.


Prior to 1492 - Indians

1492-1793 - Claimed by Spain and France

1725-1728 - Fort Orleans, French Fort near mouth of Grand River, explored in this area

1762 - France to Spain

1776 - Declaration of Independence

1785 - Congress authorized new lands to be surveyed into townships - 36 square miles

1800 - Spain to France

1803 - To the United States, Louisiana Purchase, $11¼ million

1806 - Lewis and Clark Expedition

1821 - State of Missouri

1828-1833 - French trading post on Grand River near mouth of Locust Creek, hunters and trappers, furs and honey

1831 - Samuel Todd settled west of present location of Utica. McCormick Reaper invented

1833 - November 11, Elisha Hereford camped on Medicine Creek, Levi Goben in forks of river, Austins, Bryans, and McCroskries on Shoal Creek, Abram Cox from Ohio on Medicine Creek

1834 - Store at Navetown (Springhill), Herefords ferry, Grand River

1836 - Jamestown "Jimtown" laid out, 1000 settlers in county, Mormon trail, DeWitt, Mormon Hill (Avalon), Whitney’s Mill (Dawn), Far West, Caldwell County, 40 families come together from Hopkins County, Ky., to northwest Livingston County and Jamesport area

1837 - Livingston County boundaries established, Chillicothe laid out, Utica laid out

1838 - Mormon War, Haun’s Mill, Caldwell County, Shoal Creek, Bedford laid out, ferry at Whitney’s Mill

1839 - Hargrave ferry, Grand River

1840 - Union Baptist Church founded

1841 - Bedford laid out, bridge Shoal Creek, Whitney’s Mill, Springhill Methodist Church built

1842 - Hard times, wheat 35¢ a bushel, bridge across Medicine Creek, Bloomington/Plattsburg road, Grand River Chronicle, first newspaper in County

1846 - Mexican War 91 men from Livingston County, 12 casualties. Hog drive to Brunswick, 2 weeks, load of corn for feed

1849 - Steamboat "Lake of the Woods" to forks of Grand River. Gold Rush to California, numerous citizens of Livingston County (see 1886 history)

1852 - Mount Pleasant Church founded near Springhill

1853 - Dawn was laid out. New Providence Cumberland Church founded

1857 - Father Hogan organized Catholic Church

1858 - Wheeling laid out. Extremely wet year, crops poor

1859 - Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad completed

1860 - Mooresville laid out

1861 - Civil War, 16 men from Livingston County killed at Wilson Creek

1863 - August 23, hard freeze

1867 - Milbank Mills founded

1868 - Chillicothe/Bethany stage three times a week, 6 a.m. - 6 p.m. First iron bridges in county at Graham’s Mill and Jimstown, $37,000 for both

1869 - Avalon laid out. Chillicothe/Des Moines Railroad grading nearly completed

1870 - Chillicothe/Brunswick Railroad. Farmersville laid out. Iron bridges at Bedford and east of Utica, $36,000 for both. Iron bridges north of Utica and Mooresville, $6000 for each. Iron bridges at Chula and west 3rd Street; $4500 each

1871 - Chillicothe/Pattonsburg Railroad. Sampsel laid out

1872 - County Jail and Office Building (Oakland Apartments)

1873 - Avalon College founded

1874 - Scruby Bros. Elevator at Wheeling. First Angus cattle to the United States

1876 - Livingston County population, 18,074

1880 - Tornado at Bedford, wrecked mill and center span of "new bridge"

1883 - Tornado south of Dawn, four people killed

1887 - Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad. Sturges laid out

1889 - Citizens National Bank founded

1890 - Chillicothe Business College founded

1894 - Chula laid out

1896 - Hogs, $4.35 per cwt, top price

1898 - Fire destroyed one-half of Wheeling. Spanish-American War

1900 - First horse-less carriage in Chillicothe with a circus

1901 - Dry year

1902 - First horse-less carriage (Oldsmobile) owned in Chillicothe by Dr. A. J. Simpson

1904 - Wheeling Street Fair

1909 - Flood

1910 - Before and after Fair and races north of Chillicothe

1912 - Wheat $1.00, corn 600

1918 - World War 1 25 casualties from Livingston County. Medicine Creek Drainage Ditch. Dry year. J. A. Wisdom is first Vo-Ag instructor in Chillicothe

1919 - Hogs $23.25 per cwt, top price

1929 - January, fire east side of square, Chillicothe, 29 degrees below zero

1930 - Fed, cattle 100, hogs 10,0, corn 850, wheat $1.00, beans $2.25

1932 - Fed cattle 50, hogs $4.15 cwt, wheat 350

1934 - Drought - corn yield 0, May 35¢, September 85¢. Dust storms. Bought first hybrid seed corn

1935 - Wet spring - corn planted after June 5

1936 - Drought - corn yield 0, May 65¢, September $1.20, fed oats and molasses. Grasshoppers, grass fires. U. S. 36 paved. July, 116 degrees

1937 - January, sleet and rain with 1 to 2 inch ices - stock lost, stayed on one month

1939 - Hogs top price for year $8.75

1940-1945 - Electricity to farms

1941-1945 - World War II

1947 - Flood, river stage at Chillicothe 33.82 feet

1951 - Fifty-four inches rainfall for year

1960 - National Mechanical Corn Picking Contest - Vanlandingham farm

1960-1970 - Rural water lines

1961 - Flood, March, ice jam

1962 - Pick corn and combine corn and beans in April

1973 - Ice storm in January. Blizzard April 9, stock lost

1974 - Dry summer

1975 - Dry summer


Livingston County, an area of 533 square miles, is located in north-central Missouri. The northwest portion is hilly, much timber; the northeast portion, gently rolling, and the southern part, rolling to hilly. The two forks of the Grand River merge in the central part of this county and flow in a southeasterly direction with a fall of 3.8 feet per mile. Larger creeks are Medicine Creek in the northeast part and Shoal Creek in the southwest part. There are several smaller creeks.

About 30% of the county is bottom land. There are broad acres in some locations. Early histories indicate that when the first settlers came there were about equal areas of timber and prairie. The prairie was covered with tall blue-stem; open bottom land with slough grass or "rip gut." The timbers were mostly deciduous trees, hard wood and soft wood. All of the county was covered by glaciers centuries ago. The less rolling portion has a deep mantle of glacial soil. In the hilly areas much of the soil has weathered from underlying material. Bottom areas are alluvial fill and quite fertile. In the larger areas there is much heavy gumbo soil. There are a few depressions-like areas in the uplands that were called "deer licks" or "buffalo wallows."They were no doubt so used. There are several outcroppings of sandstone and limestone. Quarries are or have been located in these areas. In past years coal mines have been operating in several locations. There are several pre-glacial valleys in the county. Wells in these areas supply unlimited water. Several deep wells have been drilled in search of oil. Results are unannounced. The Sampsel gravel pits are of glacial origin. Irrigation has been used on a limited scale. It always rains if one waits long enough. The annual average rainfall is about 36 inches. Elevation above sea level is 963 to 660 feet.

EARLY SETTLERS and date of Settlement

Blue Mound Township

1836 B. F. Baker

1839 O. H. Clifford

1839 Joseph Knox

1836 William Mann

1837 William McCarty

1838 Elijah Preston

1839 M. S. Reeves

1839 Jacob Stauffer

1839 Henry Walker

1838 Harve White

1838 William Whitney

Chillicothe Township

1838 Asel Ball

1836 David Carlyle

1836 B. Collins

1839 Joseph Cox

1836 David Curtis

1839 Caleb Gibbons

1837 John Graves

1837 Elisha Hereford

1836 Matson and Van Landt

1839 William Linville

1837 William Moberly

1838 Elizabeth Monroe

1839 Jessee Newland

1837 Isaac Ryan

1836 John Ryan

1839 George Shriver

1837 Elab Stone

1839 B. Wilkerson

1838 Joseph Wolfskill

1838 William Yancey

Cream Ridge Township

1840 C. H. Ashley

1840 W. Atkinson

1840 Josiah Austin

1842 Elizabeth Crawford

1840 Ashby and Crews

1840 Lyman Dayton

1842 Richard Dicken

1840 Joseph Hughes

1840 N. Z. Johnson

1841 James Leeper

1840 Jessee Newlin

1840 Frances Preston

1840 M. T. Treadway

Fairview Township

1839 William Campbell

1839 James Cole

1839 William Hereford

1838 John M. Johns

1839 R. H. Jordan

1837 Nathan Parsons

1838 A. J. Welch

Grand River Township

1838 S. A. Alexander

1838 Cyrus Ballew

1838 J. C. Ballew

1839 W. L. Brown

1838 J. G. Caldwell

1838 Chris Coats

1836 Whitfield Dicken

1837 Henry Duncan

1836 Rhodias Fewell

1837 Joel H. Green

1839 Hall and Stone

1837 Abner Johnson

1838 Aquila Jones

1838 Joseph Jones

1837 Asa Lanter

1836 Ruben Leaton

1838 William LeBarron

1838 J. A. Lewis

1838 Solomon Lewis

1838 R. T. Marce

1838 Elisha McGuire

1837 B. D. Midgett

1838 R. M. Mills

1837 R. R. Mills

1837 John A. Moore

1838 J. Murray

1837 George Murro

1838 J. K. Reddick

1837 John Ringo

1838 Anselm Rowley

1838 Harris Shaw

1836 Alex Silvey

1836 John Silvey

1837 W. P. Stovall

1837 John Stucky

1838 C. Williams

1838 John Wolfskill

1838 Joseph Wolfskill

1837 W. C. Wright

Green Township

1839 Madison Fisk

1835 David Girdner

1836 John Kelly

1836 Rodrick Matson

1839 William McCarty

1835 Ruben McCroskrie

1838 William Pailthrop

1837 Alfred Rockhold

1835 John Rockhold

1836 Robert Snowden

1837 John Stone

1835 Samuel E. Todd

1835 W. F. Todd

Jackson Township

1839 E. S. Andrews

1840 Z. G. Ayer

1835 B. F. Baker

1839 William A. Black

1838 Elijah Boon

1840 John W. Boyle

1840 John Brigle

1839 William Brumnett

1838 Peter Cain

1838 John S. Campbell

1838 Robert C. Campbell

1838 William Carlisle

1839 John Carmichael

1838 William P. Clark

1838 William M. Crawford

1840 David Curtis

1840 William Curtis

1839 Nathan Cox

1838 William C. David

1838 James A. Davis

1838 Alex Dockery

1838 John Doss

1840 John Findley

1840 William Finley

1840 Mathew Gibbs

1840 David Girdner

1839 Elias Guthridge

1840 T. A. Harbert

1838 Benj. Hargrave

1840 John Hargrave

1839 Joseph Harper

1838 John Hart

1840 C. H. Hayes

1838 David Hicklin

1839 John B. Hines

1840 Roah R. Hobbs

1840 H. S. Hoskins

1838 Milton P. House

1838 William O. Jennings

1842 N. Z. Johnson

1838 W. A. Jones

1838 Jonathan Jordan

1839 Danl Y. Kesler

1843 John Kirk

1838 James Leeper

1838 Andrew Ligett

1838 William Linville

1839 H. I. Martin

1838 Mose Martin

1838 William Martin

1839 J. D. Martin

1840 J. Massigee

1840 George McCoy

1839 William Miller

1840 James Nave

1840 Jesse Nave

1840 Wyatt Ogle

1838 William F. Peery

1842 N. S. Pond

1838 Samuel V. Ramsey

1840 R. W. Reeves

1839 R. T. Rowland

1837 L. Scollay

1838 Payton Sherwood

1842 Stephen Shrive

1844 H. Simmons

1840 J. Smith

1840 William Smith

1838 Abram..Sportsman

1838 Thomas Stone

1838 Sam Venable

1839 William Venable

1844 Jame Walls

1838 Dudley Ware

1838 Isham Ware

1838 Rice Ware

1839 Hugh Welch

1838 Mark White

1840 John Yates

Medicine Township

William Douglas

1840 J. J. Jordan

1840 David Kimbal

1840 Chapman Lightner

1840 James Lightner

1840 John H. Perkins

1840 Robert Phillips

1840 Thomas Ray

1840 William J. Wallace

1840 J. C. White

1840 Elizabeth Yeates

Monroe Township

1835 James Austin

1835 John Austin

1835 Purmont Bland

1836 L. A. Brady

1836 Thomas R. Bryan

1837 Jesse Coats

1837 James Earl

1836 W. P. Frazier

1836 William Fryer

1835 Spencer H. Gregory

1837 John T. Gudgell

1837 James Hamilton

1836 Henry Hoagland

1837 James Huntsman

1836 Zach Lee

1836 John Lewis

1835 Isaac MeCroskrie

1836 H. McFarland

1835 Wratt Ogle

1837 William Taylor

1836 Oliver Walker

Mooresville Township

1839 Samuel Collins

1835 Thomas Fields

1836 Thomas Fields

1838 M. Fisk

1838 Nathan Freeman

1836 Jacob Gobin

1839 H. H. Gray

1837 William Hudgins

1835 Peter Irons

1836 Henry Karsner

1838 James Lawson

1838 Fred Lyda

1839 Peter Malone

1835 William Mann

1835 Ruben McCroskrie

1838 William Mead

1835 William Parker

1837 James W. Pearman

1835 S. W. Reynolds

1836 Josiah Taylor

1836 John L. Tomlin

1836 John Trotter

1836 Alex Woods

1838 Thomas Woolsey

1836 Zeph Woolsey

Rich Hill Township

1839 Charles Ashley

1839 John Austin

1839 A. F. Ball

1839 Thomas R. Bryan

1839 David Carlyle

1839 John Cox

1839 Solomon Cox

1839 Andrew Culbertson

1839 Thomas Dobbins

1839 Samuel Forrest

1839 William Garwood

1839 Sol R. Hooker

1839 Eli Hobbs

1839 John B. Leeper

1839 William Lyman

1839 Inny Moberly

1839 Eli D. Murphy

1839 George Pace

1830 Archibald Ward

1839 James White

1839 Thomas Williams

Sampsel Township

1846 James M. Allnut

1848 Thomas E. Boucher

1847 Levan Brookshire

1847 David I. Breeze

1846 John Cooper

1847 Dr. William Carlisle

1846 Levi D. Cox

1848 Barmock Curtis

1846 J. A. Dryden

1846 James N. Falkner

1849 Henry Frith

1848 William E. Frith

1847 Abr.Gann

1848 William E. Gibbons

1846 William Hale

1847 John Hargrave

1847 James Hicks

1847 F. C. Hughes

1847 James Jennings

1846 Thomas Kirk

1848 Thomas Litton

1849 Luther Lowe

1848 William Mansfield

1846 Thomas J. Marlin

1841 Add Martin

1848 James W. McClure

1847 John M. Minnick

1847 Jesse Offield

1847 Samuel Pepper

1846 Henry H. Simons

1847 John Simpson

1846 T. Sterling

1849 R. S. Stockwell

1848 A. G. Waddell

1846 Amos Walker

1847 Dr. George Williams

Wheeling Township

1839 Tom Botts

1839 Mose Caldwell

1839 Nathan H. Gregory

1839 Elijah Harvey

1839 Joseph Miller

1839 Ezekiel Norman

EARLY SETTLERS From 1913 History

1857 J. A. Adams

1858 W. C. Adams

1860 J. P. Alexander

1854 W. F. Alexander

1857 C. A. Anderson

1857 I. M. Anderson

1844 E. M. Austin

1838 J. L. Austin

1860 G. W. Babb

1854 Henry Baker

1847 I. I. Baker

1857 J. W. Baker

1848 N. A. Baker

1858 James Bench

1859 J. W. Bills

1852 James Blackwell

1850 N. J. Bliss

1856 J. F. Bonderer

1855 W. H. Boone

1844 G. M. Brassfield

1852 J. N. Brassfield

1858 J. H. Breedlove

1859 John Brigman

1857 A. L. Brown

1838 C. R. Campbell

1842 E. Carlyle

1857 B. B. Carr

1855 L. A. Chapman

1844 W. W. Clark

1858 R. M. Cleveland

1857 J. F. Coberly

1857 A. C . Coburn

1849 W. R. Coe

1854 Mose Cole

1854 Wilson Cole

1855 J. R. Collier

1844 F. W. Combstock

1833 Hon. Abel Cox

1832 I. Cox

1850 J. C. Cox

1856 G. L. Cranmer

1856 Robert Cranmer

1852 J. M. Davis

1852 George W. Dennis

1859 T. R. Dice

1843 D. N. Dryden

1859 D. W. C. Egerton

1843 C. C. England

1858 J. E. Fahey

1840 John N. Flaherty

1856 Seymore Gale

1850 J. C. Gallatin

1858 R. A Gaunt

1856 T. H. Gibson

1853 W. R Gilbert

1853 B. B. Gill

1834 J. M. Girdner

1860 M. P. Girdner

1855 G. W. Gish

1836 L. Gordon

1860 W. C. Grant

1856 B. P. Green

1857 James Gregg

1860 M. Gregory

1860 C. C. Griffin

1860 Goodlow Grouse

1853 R. L. Hale

1858 W. B. Hale

1856 Charles Hamilton

1839 John C. Hargrave

1837 L. Hargrave

1855 Leander Harlow

1851 W. B. Harris

1839 R. Hawkins

1859 Robert Haynes

1856 A. J. Hedrick

1838 James Herriford

1857 J. E. Hill

1858 J. E. Hitt

1840 G. W. Hooker

1849 Z. T. Hooker

1854 J. S. Hoskins

1842 J. W. Hudgins

1842 John Hudgins

1848 Benjamine Hurst

1859 Henry Hutchinson

1842 J. P. Hutchinson

1850 William Hutchinson

1857 Lewis Jones

1858 T. D. Jones

1847 G. W. Kent

1848 W. F. Kent

1850 B. Kester

1855 J. C. Kester

1858 J. P. Kester

1853 J. W. Kester

1848 F. M. Kingcaid

1859 Lawrence Kinsella

1840 J. B. Kirk

1843 J. H. Kirk

1838 E. Kirtley

1844 B. F. Knox

1859 R. V. Lauderdale

1848 R. N. Lay

1858 J. H. Leavell.

1854 Andrew Leeper

1834 G. B. Ligett

1856 Samuel Lightner

1834 Wiley Linville

1856 J. S. Litton

1844 Samuel Luses

1843 Ruben Mansfield

1856 J. J. May

1851 W. R. May

1859 A. L. Mayberry

1854 J. B. McCoy

1855 James McDonald

1859 J. A. McMillen

1842 W. R. McVey

1858 H. O. Meek

1857 J. F. Meek

1859 Otis Millon

1849 L. J. Minnick

1846 W. E. Minnick

1860 R. S. Moore

1856 D. N. Morris

1841 John T. Moss

1850 S. B. Mumpower

1855 W. G. Mumpower

1840 G. B. Nave

1858 Otto Newschafer

1850 G. H. Oliver

1849 J. F. Oliver

1848 W. W. Patrick

1859 W. B. Patterson

1859 William Perron

1857 F. M. Phillips

1858 G. W. Phillips

1843 J. J. Phillips

1857 J. R. Phillips

1845 W. D. Phillips

1855 J. H. Poe

1857 B. W. Portersfield.

1859 Andrew Prager

1850 William Prewitt

1849 G. W. Purcell

1854 J. V. Ramsey

1855 G. F. Renchler

1848 N. L. Reynolds

1840 S. W. Reynolds

1854 J. T. Roberts

1854 Thomas Roberts

1849 W. P. Robinson

1857 A. T. Rockhold

1853 Isaac Rockhold

1853 J. K. Rockhold

1856 Julian Rockhold

1843 Samuel Rockhold

1849 W. C. Samuel

1857 O. H. Saunders

1857 J. W. Scott

1856 Emily Shinkle

1842 J. F. Simms

1852 F. M. Smith

1857 John M. Spears

1859 G. W. Steen

1846 James Steen

1843 John Sterling

1836 Joseph Stone

1858 J. P. Stuckey

1858 A. F. Summerville

1844 E. L. Taylor

1835 Leo Tiberghein

1845 J. Y. Todd

1838 M. Tomlin

1858 Michael Trumbo

1837 James Turner

1835 T. B. Turner

1859 J. E. Wait

1843 Joshua Walker

1854 W. R. Walker

1838 Elisha Walls

1854 J. A. Walls

1858 William Walter

1860 G. M. Walz

1857 Jacob Walz

1837 F. D. Ward

1859 J. T. Ware

1856 J. D. Warren

1848 J. H. Warren

1854 T. L. Warren

1856 R. M. Weatherby

1853 W. J. Wier

1851 F. L. Willard

1850 J. G. Willard

1851 P. H. Willard

1848 D. H. Williams-

1855 G. A. Williams

1844 I. T. Williams


Within the last 50 years, a great many beneficial changes have been made in Livingston County. The first trails were Indian trails. Trappers, traders, and bee tree hunters followed these trails. Then the settlers followed them. After the county was organized in 1837, some of the first business were roads and bridges. Roads connected points where rivers and creeks could be forded. Then individuals operated ferries. Early roads were: Bloomington (Macon County) / Plattsburg road; Colliers Mill on Medicine Creek / Chillicothe / Utica; in 1840 Colliers Mill, Cox neighborhood north of Chillicothe, McGee’s ford, near the mouth of Honey Creek / Council Bluff, Iowa; Chillicothe / Springhill / Bethany (David Girdner carried mail horseback on this route); Chillicothe / Smith’s Tavern Brunswick; Chillicothe / Slagle Mill / Linneus; and others. Later roads were laid out on section lines where needed and practical.

With the coming of automobiles, there came need for much improvement. While still dirt roads, many cross-country roads were marked on trees, fences, and telephone poles as the Pike’s Peak Ocean to Ocean, Cannon Ball, Blue J, Ben Hur, and others. Federal highways US 36 and 65 were first narrow slabs, then widened and improved. The WPA programs in the thirties put crushed rock on many country roads. Then state farm-to-market roads, gravel, and black-tops were laid out so as to put most farms within two miles of an improved road. There is still a great need for stronger bridges in many locations.


Perhaps the greatest natural disaster to occur in this county was the 1909 flood. Many people lived in bottom areas at that time. On the night of July 5th heavy rain, called a cloudburst, occurred in northwest Missouri and southern Iowa. The message of a wall of water coming down the valleys was spread by telephone, warning people in the low-lying areas. In the Medicine Creek bottoms east of Sturges, Claus Jacobs with others were driving cattle to higher ground. They were caught by the wall of water. He was thrown from his horse and gained safety in a tree where he spent the night, to be rescued by boat the next day. A new McCormick binder was in this bottom. Only the top part showed above the water.

In the Grand River bottoms the raised railroad beds temporarily delayed the rush of the muddy water. The damage was great. Shocked fields of wheat and oats were washed away. Many livestock, chickens, fences, buildings, and bridges were lost. Corn and hay crops were destroyed. Miles of railroad track were washed out. Only one life was lost, a telephone repairman who fell from a pole and was unable to swim. Other counties throughout north Missouri suffered heavy losses.

The 1909 flood at Chillicothe was recorded at 33.6 feet. In 1947 a recording of 33.8 feet was reached. This time there was less lost. Floods are a frequent occurrence in bottom area. In 1851 at the time of the big flood in Kansas City, the rainfall in Chillicothe was 54 inches for the year. Floods have been caused by ice jams and drifts in streams and on bridges.

Much channel straightening has been done. Soon after 1900 a ditch was plowed with a big plow and 18 head of oxen in the Medicine Creek bottoms east and southeast of Chula for about 2½miles through rip-gut sod. This became the creek channel and cut off a big bend of the creek. It was known as the Manning ditch. In 1918 and 1919 the channel was straightened for several miles beyond this. A drainage district was formed. Meek was contracted on the upper end. He used a dredge boat. The lower part was dug with a drag line. Other districts completed this to the river. This channel improvement was partially successful for a number of years. Many bridges washed out as the channel grew wider with each high water. No provisions were made for maintenance. Drifts plugged the channel until it was closed for a distance of about seven miles. The water sought other channels and at flood times inundated great areas of bottom land. One benefit was the good soil deposited on the gumbo. About ten years ago, through the efforts of landowners, the channel was reopened. Much -leveling and bulldozing has been done and most of the bottoms are now planted in corn, beans, and milo.

The history of other bottom areas is quite the same. Shoal, Muddy, Honey, and other creeks were straightened and leveed. On Grand River many bends were cut off. Attempts at tiling were made in some areas, notably the American bottoms west of Chula. They were not successful.

The costs of much channel improvement were high and at times when money was scarce. Some assessments were not paid off and the land was turned over to the bonding companies. They later sold this land, much under $20.00 per acre, which was a fair price at that time for the condition it was in.

Army Engineer plans for the Grand River basin have thus far been of little benefit to Livingsion County. The Soil Conservation Service has given assistance in many projects.

There are locations in the county where bridges have been, but no longer exist. Many bridges are very old, horse and buggy bridges. They are not safe for today’s needs. A hundred years ago, this county found money to build adequate bridges. I believe at least one is still in use. Now the money is not available for that purpose. In this county several streams merge that drain a much larger area. A county should not have to bear all the expense for those bridges.


In the early days the church, with protracted meetings oyster suppers, ice ream suppers, bazaars, quilting circles, flower shows, Thanksgiving dinners and Christmas programs, provided social contacts. The schools with spelling bees, box suppers, and Christmas entertainments did the same.

In 1858 there was an Agricultural and Mechanical Society. In the early 1900’s there was the Anti-Horse Thief Association, circuses, Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Shows, and Medicine shows. Wheeling, Avalon, and Chula had fairs. Nearly every town had a band. The fair and horse races were held at the fair grounds, north of Chillicothe, the present location of Simpson Park and the Country Club. Occasionally there was a balloon ascension. Later Chautauquas were popular in summer and Lyceum programs in winter. A Farm Congress was held each fall in Chillicothe about the time of World War I.

In more recent years and in connection with farm youth activities, the event was changed to a fall festival held at various locations. About 1960 a movement was started to secure a permanent place for such activities. After much cooperative effort, a fair grounds was secured at the Chillicothe Municipal Airport. Permanent buildings were erected and they are the site of the Livingston County 4-H and FFA Fair held each fall. It is an event that all the people of the area can be proud of.

From 1934 to 1942 there was a distinctly agricultural event, corn husking contests. Eighty minutes top speed, peg or hook with deductions for husks in the wagon and ears left in field. Fred Shinnemen represented Livingston in the State Contest in 1936. In 1927 he won the state contest and represented Missouri in the national contest in Minnesota. Snow and ice were on the stalks and as he shucked bare handed he was severely handicapped. In later years Dwight Jagger and Ursil Meeker represented Livingston County in the state contests. County contests were held. The national event drew as many as 100,000 people.

As corn shucking gave way to mechanical harvesting the event changed. In 1958 the state Mechanical Corn Harvesting contest was held on the Ted Vanlandingharn farm east of Chillicothe. In 1960 the National event was held on the same farm. The corn was good, well over 100 bushels per acre. Senator Lyndon Johnson was there as a featured speaker.

Rivers and creeks have always provided good fishing. Many large catfish have been caught. With the Missouri Conservation Commission providing fish for stocking ponds and lakes, they have been good fishing spots. Also restocking the area with whitetail deer has made it good for big game hunting. The proximity of Swan Lake and Fountain Grove Wildlife Area has made many duck and geese in Livingston County. Rattlesnake and Coyote hunting are also popular farm sports.


When the settlers came to Livingston County, many of them walked or rode horseback. The wagons were full of a great variety of needed articles and were pulled by horses or oxen. The family cow and some breeding stock were herded along. The first mules and jacks came up the Santa Fe trail. They were brought back by traders who had taken goods to Santa Fe. The jacks were crossed with draft horses and road horses that came from the east. This produced a mule that was superior to those of the southwest. A greater abundance of feed in this area and a big demand for draft animals to pull wagons to California and Oregon made this area good for producing horses and mules.

Cattle were of English breeds: reds and roans, sometimes called Durhams, also Shorthorns, and later Herefords, Angus, and Galloways. Early breeders of Shorthorn cattle in this county were P. H. Minor, 1870, and John Morris, who also bred Berkshire hogs and Cotswold and Shropshire sheep. Another Shorthorn breeder was T. F. B. Sothum, who in 1890 lived three miles north of Chillicothe, and had a private switchtrack on the Milwaukee railroad. Later, as markets were established, more dairy cattle were raised. Adams Creamery, Fairmont in 1870, and Swift & Company were early buyers. Also grocery stores took in eggs, cream, and butter in trade. In the twenties and thirties there was a trend to dairying. Many farmers milked cows by hand, ran the milk through a hand-cranked separator, and sold cream, or shipped it on the railroad.

Hogs were brought in very early as they were quite Adaptable and able to shift for themselves. Also they provided bacon and salt-cured meat that could be sold and carried on long journeys. It is recorded that the Spanish explorer, DeSoto, in 1540, on his journey from Florida to the Mississippi River and Arkansas, Oklahoma, and Texas, drove along a small herd of hogs. They thrived and multiplied.

Sheep were a necessary part of pioneer life. They provided wool for clothing. The history of 1886 records very large flocks in Missouri.

The completion of the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad was a great thing for the livestock industry. Stock could be shipped to larger markets. Cattle and hogs were driven to Chillicothe and other towns on the railroad. Many crossed Graham’s Mill bridge from several counties away. The year 1858 was a year of poor crops and many cattle died the following winter. Much of the first freight shipped on the new railroad was cattle hides.

Later the Wabash and Milwaukee Railroads provided outlets to other markets. Chula became the largest livestock shipping point on the Kansas City/Ottumwa division. Fourteen carloads were shipped from Sturges one night. Every town had a stockyards and buyers who assembled carloads. Most farms raised hogs and cattle. Two and three-year-old steers were fed and shipped to Kansas City and Chicago. With a load of livestock a shipper got a free ride to market in the caboose. He paid his way back on a passenger train. From Ira Blue came stories of shippers becoming well acquainted with the trainmen. They would crowd around the conductor and take cigars, fruit, and candy from him, then before leaving the train give him a generous tip. Another story is of one of them grabbing a brakeman as the train was pulling out, holding him until the train was down the track. It had to stop and back up to get its brakeman. Certain trains hauled the stock cars that came immediately behind the engine and coal car. A great number of feeder cattle were shipped through Livingston County to feed lots in Iowa and Illinois.

With the improvement of roads, trucks began to haul more livestock. They would pick up any number at the farm anytime roads and weather permitted. Also they could haul back feed, coal, and supplies. Several years ago the railroads discontinued hauling livestock. About 20 years ago trucks hauled much hay out of this area to dairy farmers in south Missouri. Now with more use of fertilizer in that area the demand has diminished.

Many upright silos of wooden staves, bricks, concrete blocks, and poured concrete, were put up between 1910-1950. They were a great aid in feeding and watering cattle. With the coming of bulldozers trench silos became popular. Many are still used. Now there are a few modern glass-lined silos, but not as many as in other areas.

Recent years have seen the introduction of so called exotic breeds of cattle. They carry different characteristics and give the advantage of cross breeding. These breeds are perhaps more popular in this area due to the success of an early, well-known breeder.

Livingston County has a great deal of land that is not suitable for plowing and continuous growing of row crops. It has always been more of a cow and calf area. The old cow is the best animal available to convert grass and crop residue to human food. She has helped farm the rougher areas and feed the family. She can reproduce herself and does not require costly repair parts.

Fifty years ago many farms had flocks of sheep. They produced wool and a crop of lambs, and many people liked to handle and feed them. Dogs, coyotes, and parasites were always a problem. Now not many are raised.

Hogs have paid for many farms. They are rapid growing and are efficient converters of grain to meat. Almost every farm kept some hogs, raising two litters a year, and using them to clean up corn fields, hog down corn, and to follow cattle in the feed lots. Now fewer farmers raise hogs. They require more labor, scoop shovels are less popular, and outside money is more available. Many hogs are now raised in confinement with fewer producers raising larger numbers per unit.

Fifty years ago a flock of chickens was on nearly every farm, including Plymouth Rock, Rhode Island Reds, Wyandotte, Langshangs, Leghorns, and other breeds, along with turkeys, ducks, geese, guineas, and bantams. Now very few farms have chickens. Until the tractor replaced horses and mules, they were the only source of power except for oxen. Farming would have not progressed without them. In this county were many breeders of good quality horses and mules.


John Stewart, a native of Pennsylvania, came into this area at an early date as a buyer for the American Fur Company. He thought Nave Town (Springhill) would be a good place to settle down. When he returned to St. Louis he bought a stock of goods and returned with his family. He ran a hotel and packing house. Cured pork was hauled by wagon to a point on the Grand River about 1½ miles down the river from the later site of Graham’s Mill. There it was loaded on flat boats and floated down the river to St. Louis. He also outfitted four wagons to go to California in 1849.

Edward Carney, a native of England, came to Chillicothe in 1870. After the Wabash Railroad was completed, he operated a packing plant southwest of Chillicothe on the Utica road. He employed about 30 men, and had several buyers who rode through this county on horseback buying livestock.

Chris Boehner came from Germany in 1871, and to Chillicothe four years later. He operated a packing plant in the northwest part of Chillicothe, southwest of Simpson Park. In the winter of 1884 he slaughtered 2000 hogs. A brick building and a pond are still at this site on the Windle property.


Indians who occupied this area grew corn, beans, and squash. But they, like the early settlers, depended largely on wild game, fruit, nuts, and berries. When the settlers came, the prairie land was covered with tall blue-stem, Little of this still exists. Some may be seen in old cemeteries and along railroads. The Missouri Prairie Foundation is preserving areas of native grasses in other parts of the state. Crops that the settlers grew were for human use and for livestock feed. There was little market for it. At the early mills it could pay for the grinding and be traded for other supplies.

In 1849 a steamboat, the Lake of the Woods, came to the forks of the river. It was loaded with wheat by A. T. Kirtley, Wm. Mead, and James Campbell. At St. Louis it sold for 500 per bushel.

In 1867 George Milbank built a mill in Chillicothe. He offered to buy wheat at any time. This created a market. At this time wheat was sowed by hand, cut with a cradle, and threshed with a flail. Corn was planted with a hoe, sometimes an axe and covered with a hoe. Also, rye, oats, hemp, and tobacco were grown. Then improved plows, mowers, McCormick binders, followed by horse-powered threshing machines, and balers greatly expanded the growing of crops. Steam engines came into use for threshing, saw mills, and breaking prairie and bottom land from tough sod. Gang plows with several bottoms had a hand lever for raising and lowering each plow.

Bluegrass, clover, and timothy were grown for hay and pasture. Hay was mowed, raked with a sulky or bull rake, and stacked with a pitch fork or overshot stacker. Jenkins Rake and Stacker Factory and Foundry moved from Browning to Chillicothe in 1889. It employed 75100 men. There was a broom factory and cigar factories in Chillicothe and other towns. There was a good market for hay to livery stables and for shipping on the railroad.

The first part of the 20th century was the days of the big threshing machines, powered by long drive belts from a steam engine and later by tractors. Those were the days of threshing rigs in every community. Wheat, oats, rye, and timothy were cut with a binder and shocked. When dry and the corn crop laid by, the threshing rigs started out. The crew was an engine man and a water hauler for steam engines, a separator man, whose usual stand was on top of the separator, 6-8 bundle wagons, 4 pitchers in the field, 2 grain haulers, a spike scooper, and sometimes a man on the straw stack, and kids with water jugs. It required plenty of help from neighbor ladies and hired girls at the house to prepare a noon meal and supper. They always set a bountiful table, a great variety of food, and dessert with coffee and iced tea. Sometimes farmers would haul in bundles and stack them in conical stacks near the barns. They could be threshed later with a smaller crew. Straw stacks made good winter feed and shelter for livestock. Some set posts in the ground and laid poles and planks over them. The straw stack was made in. the top of this.

Later a number of upright silos were built. it was somewhat the same system for filling silos with corn or sorgo. In the thirties the corn binders had worn out and money was scarce to replace them. Much corn was cut by hand. In the dry years corn never tassled out and a binder would not handle what was left over after the grasshoppers ate most of it. It required many acres to fill a silo. The usual wage was $1.00 per day with dinner. Prior to silos much corn was cut by hand and shocked for winter feed.

Fruit and apples were grown on nearly every farm. That which was not needed for home use was barreled and shipped. There were large orchards in the Utica and Wheeling areas. In 1908 the Chula News carried a notice of a farm for sale with 500 apple trees and 800 peach trees.

About 1930 soybeans were introduced, first used as a hay crop, mowed before maturity, raked with a sulky rake, shocked with a pitch fork, and hauled in for feeding or threshing. About this time Korean lespedeza also became popular as a legume that would grow on any soil and provide pasture, hay, and seed. It would re-seed, no matter how close it was pastured. Some barley was grown. It sometimes winter killed. Grain sorghum became popular after the combine came into use, as it withstood drought and flooding better than corn. Cattle, hogs, and horses ate most of what was produced except for wheat and some hay.

Tractors replaced horses and mules, and following them came corn pickers, combines, -and hay balers, first with auxiliary gas engines and later PTO-driven. Then they put rubber tires on everything, and starters and road gears in tractors. Now it is very different with self-propelled combines and windrowers, drying bins, grinder/mixers, trucks, forage harvesters, stackers, big balers, chisel plowers, mulchers, fertilizer trucks, and chemical insect and weed control, sometimes applied by airplanes.

Also, the farm has changed, Small farms have been combined, fences taken out, homes abandoned, buildings burned or bulldozed, and much ground diverted to row crops. This would be better in grass, if there were more cattle to eat it, which is not the case at this time. However, there is also a surplus of corn, wheat, and beans. Even farmers have changed. There is less general, independent, self-sufficient farming and more specialization. Some are strictly grain farmers. Some are living in town and going out to farm, and many are farming several farms miles apart.


Grass is the forgiveness of Nature-her constant benediction. Its tenacious fibers hold the earth in its place and prevent its soluble components from washing into the wasting sea. It invades the solitudes of the desert, climbs the inaccessible slopes and forbidden pinnacles of mountains, modifies climates, and determines the history, character, and destiny of nations. Unobtrusive and patient, it has immortal vigor and aggression. Banished from the thoroughfare and the field, it bides its time to return, and when vigilance is relaxed or the dynasty has perished, it silently resumes the throne from which it had been expelled, but which it never abdicated. It bears no blazonry of bloom to charm the senses with fragrance or splendor, but its homely hue is more enchanting than the lily or the rose, It yields no fruit in earth or air, and yet, should its harvest fail for a single year, f amine would depopulate the world. - John J. Ingalls



Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad

Track laying gangs from the east and from the west met at a point in Section 4 on the David Mumpower farm, three miles east of Chillicothe on the 13th of February, 1859. Besides gangs of workmen, these were present: William Kent, David Mumpower, George Babb, Sol Hoge, and others. Two railroad locomotives were on each side of the gap. As the last rail was put in place and the spikes driven home they set off a blast of whistles that echoed through the county for miles. From miles around people came in wagons, on horseback, and on foot to join in the celebration.

David Mumpower was born in Washington County, Va., in 1815. He lived nine years in Clay County, Mo., moving to Livingston County in 1850. He died in 1891 and is buried in Jones Cemetery. S. B. Mumpower, who later lived on the farm, was 10 years old at that time, and was present at the scene.

The railroad did a flourishing business as it had no competition for some time. The limit on speed was 18 miles per hour and the rate for passengers was 5 cents per mile.


Anderson, Marcellus J. and Rosemary 14-56-25 1874

Balman, Marvin and Viola 5-59-23 1868

Bartholome, George, and Eckert, Altie B 8 and 9-59-22 1871

Bills, C. Press and Mary 4-58-25 1840

Blycker, Bonnie Austin 5-56-25 1837

Bonderer, Gerald and Margaret 12-57-25 1869

Bowen, Lewis and Linnie 7-56-23 1866

Casebeer, Margaret, John, and Charles 19-59-23 1850

Chapman, Mrs. Nolan (Esther) 9-56-24 1868

Coberley, William Daniel and Mary Frances 24-59-23 1857

Cole, J. W 34-59-25 1873

Culling, Ira A. and Dorothy 36-57-25 1853

Culling, Warren G. and Patricia 36-57-25 1873

Dorney, Maurice, Jr 1-56-24 1868

Drummond, Irene Ballenger 17-59-23 1854

Duncan, Thomas and Edna 24-56-22 1857

Gilbert, Michael S 23-58-23 1853

Graham, Gerald C. and Ruth I 17-59-23 1871

Gray, Harold and Ruth E 18-56-22 1865

Hayen, Harry and Joyce 17-57-23 1876

Hill, Ethlyn Warner 19-56-25 1871

Hooker, Wallace T. and Edna 19-59-23 1850

Hooten, Ola Burner 23-56-24 1855

Hudgins, Gary W. and Sheryl 13-57-25 1843

Jacobs, Orville and Evelyn (Donovan) 36-59-23 1868

Jennings, Leroy and Gwendolyn (Metzner) 11-58-23 1868

Johnson, L. M. and Mildred 25-56-25 1868

Jones, Mr. and Mrs. David Wendell 8-56-24 1868

Jones, J. Roy and Frankie 5-56-24 1868

Jones, Lawrence G 20-56-24 1868

Jones, Victor and Karlene 21-56-24 1868

Larsen, Charles and Rosemary (Boucher) 16-56-25 1859

Littrell, Melvin L 9-57-22 1855

Lucas, Gladys C 12-58-25 1860

Lutes, Keith and Alice 8-56-22 1866

Mansfield, Herbert E., Eugene W., and Cox, Mary E. 17-58-25 1870

Mathews, Mr. and Mrs. Claude 18-56-22 1865

Morris, Ora C. and Grace 20-59-23 1842

Morris, Ora C. and Dorothy 1-58-24 1862

Morris, Ora C., Dorothy, and Mabel 6-58-23 1864

Morris, Ora C. and Dorothy 6-58-23 1873

Neis, Geneva and Neis, Victor 33-59-23 1870

Peery, John L 18-59-25 1839

Phillips, John J. and Okie 7-59-22 1850

Remick, Hazel Stamper 18 and 19-57-24 1838

Rickenbrode, Holton R. (Rickenbrode) 26-56-23 1869

Rickenbrode, Holton R. (Roberts) 13-56-23 1876

Roberts, Verl E. (Roberts) 33-59-23 1873

Roberts, Verl E. (Uhrmacher) 33-59-23 1870

Rockhold, George W 24-57-25 1848

Sanson, Harry and Viva (Watson) 16-57-22 1871

Seiberling, George and Ruth 36-57-24 1868

Silvey, Willard A 18-56-22 1836

Smith, Mrs. Brock 10-59-23 1865

Steele, Mr. and Mrs. Francis M 6-56-23 1868

Steen, Lee M. and Opal L 5-58-23 1853

Stone, Mrs. Edith B., Grace, and Calvin 30-57-24 1864

Thomas, T. J., and Thomas, Eileen 21-56-24 1870

Thompson, Mrs. Arthur (Nellie) 14-58-24 1840

Transue, Cecil, Jessie, and Shirley 16-59-22 1876

Trumbo, Buel 30-59-22 1861

Walker, Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth 17-58-23 1862

Ward, Don and Eleanor 6-59-23 1856

Ward, Norman R., and Randy 6-59-23 1855

Warner, Mrs. Clinton (Zeola) 18-56-25 1869

Warren, Dale and Rema 4-57-22 1866

Webb, Clifford and Lola 7 and 18-56-25 1851

West, Richard L., and Burgess, Thelma M 7 and 18-59-24 1840

Wilson, Floyd R., and Wilson, Alta L 26-58-25 1868



Marcellus and Rosemary Anderson

My grandfather, Patrick Anderson I, was born in Ireland in about 1822. He came to the United States at an early age and settled in Fort Clee, New Jersey, where he was married to Mary Ann Campbell. To this union three children were born: Patrick II, John, and Margaret. The family came to Missouri in 1870 where my father bought 40 acres of land in Livingston County, 12 miles southwest of Chillicothe, between Ludlow and Dawn. This is now on State Road DD.

Purchase of the first land (40 acres) was made in the year 1874 from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad. Now the Milwaukee is a quarter mile west of the house.

My grandfather died soon after coming to Livingston County. My grandmother, Patrick II, and John built a small, one-room house where they lived a few years. In about 1880 they built a large five-room house. My father was married on October 20, 1883, to Clara Harvey at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church in Utica, Mo. To this union 12 children were born in the house that was built in 1880. Two of my three children were also born there in 1936 and 1937.

My grandmother lived with us until her death in 1909 at the age of 84. My uncle John also lived with us for many years, he never married. My Aunt Margaret kept house for the late Andy Hedrick for many years. Late in life she was married to Patrick Curran of Chillicothe where she lived until her death in 1935.

My father and uncle John engaged in general farming. They bought more land and raised corn, oats, wheat, cattle, hogs, and horses. In the late 1920s they owned 320 acres. We had a good life on the farm, always having plenty of food. All we had to buy was flour, sugar, and coffee. My father would go to Chillicothe in the wagon in the fall of the year to get supplies for winter. We would drive a team of horses or mules and our carriage to church in Utica, six miles away, on Sundays (St. Joseph’s Catholic). My father would take us to the circus in Chillicothe, the highlight of our lives.

My brother, the late Joseph Anderson, and I took over the home place, 40 acres from my father and 40 acres from my aunt Margaret, in 1934.

1 was married on August 3, 1935, to Rosemary O’Rourke in St. Joseph’s Church in Chillicothe. We have three children: Marcellus, Jr., now living in California; Elizabeth Ann and Mrs. Jane Carey, both of whom live in Shawnee Mission, Kansas. We have six grandchildren: Chris, Susan, Marcy, and Gregory Anderson, and Mike and Shelia Carey.

We lived on the farm from 1935 to 1961 when we moved to Shawnee Mission, Kansas. We have had the farmhouse remodeled and will retire there this year, 1976.

Patrick I and wife, Patrick II and wife, and all of my deceased brothers and sisters, with the exception Of two, were buried in the Catholic Cemetery in Chillicothe. Dennis was buried in St. Joseph, Mo., and Catherine McGinnis was buried in Warrensburg, Mo. I have one sister, Sister Mary Fidelia, living at the Nazareth Convent at St. Louis, Mo. I have one brother living: John Edward Anderson, Kansas City, Mo. I have 37 great-grandchildren surviving.

My brother, Hugh Patrick III, spent three years in the U. S. Navy in World War I. Several of the boys from the fourth generation were in the service during World War H.

My first ride in an auto was about 1914. The late Dr. Simpson of Chillicothe came by our farm on a Sunday and gave us a ride up the road and we walked back home.

Our near neighbors, when I was a boy, were Col. A. W. Cies on the west, the Shields family on the north (where Roy Shields still lives), the Carl Hunt family (who moved to Canada in about 1916), the Gregory Lawson family (who were very kind to us when my brother, Timothy, died at the age of 16 in 1916). They had one of the first autos. They took my family to the funeral at Utica, and to the cemetery in Chillicothe. Albrittan Lawson still owns and lives on the farm.

The creek running through our farm was called Rattlesnake, not because there were snakes, but because it was so crooked.

A large ditch was dug through our farm, it was called Dredge Ditch. This was about 1910. It started east of Braymer and ran to Grand River south of Chillicothe. The landowners were taxed for this; my father’s tax was $100 per year for 19 years. It did a good job draining the swampland. The workers lived in one of our large sheds while digging the ditch.

Risley School was one mile north of our farm. It was named after the owner of the farm, Mr. Risley. My uncle John later bought the farm. All my brothers and sisters and I went to this school. Two of my sisters went to St. Joseph Academy in Chillicothe and some of us went to Dawn High School.

Children of Clara and Patrick Anderson: Mary Adeline Anderson, born January 15, 1885; Andrew Anderson, born April 16, 1886; Amos Anderson, born January 10, 1887; Catherine, born October 31, 1890; Hugh Pat, born February 21, 1893; Dennis William, born August 19, 1895; Anna (Sister M. Fidelia), born March 16, 1898, left February 5, 1921, to join St. Joseph Sisters; Timothy, born July 4, 1900, died November 2, 1916; John Edward, born January 4, 1903; Marcellus Joseph, born May 21, 1905; Joseph Harvey, born July 29, 19 10, died May 16, 1953; Clara Elizabeth, born March 15, 1913, died August 24, 1949; Patrick Anderson, died April 4, 1939; Clara Anderson, died February 27, 1943; John W. Anderson, died April 1, 1941; Andrew Anderson, son of Patrick and Clara Anderson, died February 7, 1942; Margaret Anderson, wife of Andrew Carr, died April 28, 1935; Margaret Anderson Curran (sister of John and Patrick), died April 29, 1935, at 90 years; little Michael Anderson (son of Joe and Emily), died Sunday, March 31, 1946, 2 years, 9 months; Joseph Harvey Anderson, died May 16, 1953; Grandma Anderson, died 1909, age 84 years; Aunt (Mat) Martha Harvey (wife of Uncle Lon Harvey), died October 17, 1950, at Kearney, Nebraska. - Marcellus J. Anderson


George Bartholome and Altie B. Eckert

Robert Bartholome (1833-1917) was born in the Province of Saxony, Prussia. Like all youth of the country, he spent three years in military service. He also obtained a good education in the public schools. His parents were Elias and Elizabeth Bartholome. The father was born in 1786 and the mother in 1793. Elias was a soldier in the Prussian army for a number of years, participating in the Battle of Waterloo, also the Battle of Leipzig. For his services in the conflict he obtained a gold medal. He also received four other medals for service to his country. Two of these he disposed of for quite a sum of money. He died in his native land in 1863 leaving seven children other than Robert: Henry in Oregon, Paul and Sophia in Illinois, and Wilhemina, Susannah, and Margaret in Prussia. The sons were all farmers except George, who was a shoemaker.

Robert immigrated to this country in 1859. On August 23,1871, he married Elizabeth Goos (1843-1935) of Livingston County, Missouri. Her father, Claus Goos, was born in Schleswig-Holstein, Germany. He served in the Prussian War in 1864, coming to America in 1870. Robert and Elizabeth were baptized as Lutherans in Germany. They were the parents of ten children:

Minnie (Bartholome) Burtch 1872-1954

Dora Bartholome 1884-1941

Robert Bartholome 1887-1954

Catherine (Bartholome) Triplett 1877-1969

August Bartholorne 1875-1967

Edna (Bartholome) Tolson 1891-1966

Emma (Bartholome) Dudley 1880-1960

Elizabeth (Bartholome) Engelman 1882-1969

George Bartholome 1896

Altie (Bartholome) Eckert 1893

The parents are buried in the Wallace Cemetery.

After they were married in 1871, at the home of mother’s sister, they moved to the 60 acres, Section 9-59-22. There was a log house there. The older children were born there. He bought additional land consisting of 192 acres. The four younger children were born in the present house, which was built in 1890. The front part and two north rooms were added in 1904. The carpenter was Bill Davis of Laredo.

Before I was born, in April of 1893, a dark cloud formed late in the evening, and a cyclone struck Banner schoolhouse, a fairly new building with extra room for wraps and dinner buckets. It scattered the building for miles. The teacher’s clock and bell were found 10 miles northeast near Haseville. Later a new Banner schoolhouse was built. The cyclone moved the front part of the Bartholome house seven inches off the foundation, broke several windows, blew away the hen house and granary. At the former Henry Eckert place it blew the house away. The Bisbee family lived there. They had just left the house and entered the cave. Later a new Banner schoolhouse was built.

All the Bartholome family attended this school. We had wonderful teachers who taught reading, writing, arithmetic, spelling, history, grammar, geography, and singing. We had spelling and ciphering matches. On the last day of school several exhibits were shown. Folks came from miles around.

Years ago we attended Sebago Church and Sunday School. Our first car was a Model T, and later a Model A. The last car George bought was in 1966 and was a red Chevrolet. He raised cattle, hogs, sheep, mules, and chickens. Row crops included corn, oats, wheat, soybeans, clover, timothy, and lespedeza for hay. We had a large garden and two large orchards. We raised the following varieties of apples: Jonathan, Ben Davis, Genetin, Willow Twigs, Huntsman’s Favorite, Whitney, Yellow and Red Delicious, and red and yellow crabapples.

Varieties of pears raised: Bartlett, Dutchess, Anfou, Seckel, and winter pears. Some pear trees are 90 years old and still bear fruit. We also had blackberries, black and red raspberries, and strawberries. We sold a large amount of the fruit. We had good pasture. There is a timber branch that runs through the 60 acres, a pond, a cistern, fruit and shade trees near the site.of the log cabin of nearly 100 years ago.

I can remember when we got our mail at Eversonville; later at a Postoffice in Gibsonps store in Chula. We put up a mailbox in 1904 and it was 3/4 of a mile from the house. The route was changed about 1920 and now goes by the house.


Marvin and Viola Balman

John Oldaker and his wife Mary came from Wyoming County, Illinois, in 1868. They bought 160 acres (SW ¼ Sec. 3-59-23) from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad. A year later, his brother Jacob and wife Laura, and their father Rhamey and mother Elizabeth came from Ohio. They each bought 40 acres from John. Later John and Mary moved to Rolfe, Iowa.

This was an area of good farming ground. In 1879, Rhamey bought 40 acres near Medicine Creek which is still a part of the farm. After Rhamey’s death, Jacob bought his land from the other heirs. In 1936, a son, H. B. (Dick) Oldaker, bought the farm from his father’s estate. He lived there until his death in 1963. He never married.

Jacob Oldaker (1845-1925) and Laura (18581934) were married in 1876. Their children were: Charles 1877, Orie 1879, Bessie 1881, Ray 1884, H. B. 1887, Laura 1890, and J. A. 1892.

Orie married William A. Clingingsmith. Their daughter married Jess Balman of Livingston County. A son, Marvin and his wife Viola Collins Balman, bought this from other heirs in 1964. - Marvin and Viola Balman


C. Pres and Mary Bills

Stephen Bills: was born December, 1823, in New Hampton, North Carolina; married Harriett Boone December 5th, 1840; bought a farm in Livingston County shortly after 1840. He went to California during the gold rush in 1849, by ox team and wagon, and returned in 1853, living in a log house at the time. Shortly after his return, he built the frame house on the present farm. He died in August, 1859. Harriet Bills died August 5,1908. The farm then went to J. W. Bills, his son, who owned the farm until 1933, then sold it to his son, C. Pres Bills.. The farm has always been general farming with crops and livestock.

There is a Bills family cemetery on this farm. Harriet Boone was born in 1824 in North Carolina. She was the daughter of Eliza and Nancy Evans Boone, They moved to Livingston County in 1834. Her father and two brothers were in the Mormon war in 1838. - C. Pres Bills


Bonnie Austin Blycker

Our great-grandparents, John and Mary Austin, came to Livingston County from White County, Tennessee. Their ancestors were originally from Scotland. They with other settlers pitched their tent and camped on Shoal Creek in the southwest part of the county. In 1833, the night of November 12 was very memorable to the early settlers of Missouri as "the time when the stars fell."

They were the parents of eight children: Andrew N., William C., David C., Spence Hall, Lovey M., John Melathy, Mary Ann, and Louisa Jane, all of whom resided in Livingston County at the time of their father’s death.

Spence Hall Austin was our grandfather and was a farmer and stock dealer. A portion of his farm was in orchard. He was married to Frances Ann Smith on June 6, 1878. They had one son, James Ola Austin, and also made a home for Emma Flamm who came to live with them after the death of her mother.

James O. Austin married Laura Culling on December 24, 1906, and they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary December 24, 1956. They were the parents of five children: Zeola Austin Warner, Bonnie Austin Blycker, Corwaine Austin (deceased), Luthera Austin Clegg, and Eddison Austin.

Spence Hall Austin died March 23, 1901, and was buried in Bethel Cemetery.

James O. Austin died March 10, 1957. Laura Austin died May 29, 1967. Corwaine Austin died March 18, 1975. They are all buried in Bethel Cemetery.

There is a spring about 125 yards north of the old house. When asked about the deep depression nearby, my father, James O. Austin, said it was made by wagons of people on their way to Oregon who camped near the spring.

September 9, 1838, John Austin purchased at the land office at Lexington, Mo., the NW ¼ of the NW ¼ Sec. 4-56-26. The document was signed by President Martin Van Buren.

John Austin was appointed postmaster of Austinville postoffice, Livingston County, in 1841. - Bonnie Austin Blycker


Gerald and Margaret Bonderer

One of fifteen children, Joseph Flavian Bonderer was born to John Peter and Catherine (Probst) Bonderer on September 9, 1827, in St. Gallen Canton, Switzerland. In May of the year 1855 he sailed for America, landing at New Orleans. He traveled up the Mississippi River to St. Louis and secured employment working on a farm for which he was paid wages of $6.75 per month. After six months he left St. Louis, traveling up the Missouri River to Brunswick, and then overland to Utica. Here he established the business of burning lime, quarrying, and contracting rock. In 1860 he entered the military service and was stationed at Breckenridge, Missouri. After serving two years he came back to Utica and re-established his lime kiln and rock contract work which he continued for a period of twelve years. Several buildings still standing in Chillicothe were quarried and constructed by Mr. Bonderer. They include the county jail and the rock work of the St. Columban Church. (This quarry is still in the present Bonderer farm.)

In 1860 Flavian married Catherine Barbara Seitters of Alsace-Lorraine. Catherine’s family had settled in the "Low Gap" country near Plymouth about the same time Flavian came to America. The romance began when Flavian was visiting the Seitter family and saw a picture of Catherine. (Catherine was in Illinois with her sister.) Anyway Joseph remarked after seeing the picture, "Send for her to come home, I want to marry her." The wedding took place on December 18, 1860.

The farm was purchased in several different pieces from the year 1873 to 1878. It consisted of 182 acres plus the five acres of the quarry, which is a half mile from the rest of the farm.

To Joseph and Catherine fourteen children were born, six of whom survived. Joseph died January 25, 1900, and Catherine died on April 29, 1912. Both are buried in the Catholic Cemetery in Chillicothe, Missouri.

Lawrence Flavian, the eldest son, married Stella McMillen April 26, 1892, at the Catholic Church in Utica and they moved immediately to the farm. Their possessions were carried in one wagon and they led their one cow behind it. They lived on this same farm until 1941 where they reared eight children-six boys and two girls. One child, a boy, died in infancy. The farm, which they purchased from Lawrence’s mother and the rest of the heirs, became theirs in 1904.

The farm located one and one-half miles west and a mile and a half north of Utica on the south side of Grand River is about half bottom ground and the rest rough hill timberland. When Stella and Lawrence moved to the farm, there was one small house and barn, a small orchard and forty acres cleared. The family cleared the rest of the farm; put the bottom land in crops, the hill in pasture; raised cattle and hogs and constructed a large barn in 1909. Their home, a large two-story house consisting of 8 rooms, was built from lumber sawed from trees growing on the farm. It was built onto the existing house, making 11 rooms in all.

Gerald and Margaret immediately began to modernize the home. They put in running water, bathrooms, hardwood flooring, clothes closets, added a garage and family room and landscaped the yard. They expanded their flock of Corriedale sheep, which Gerald started in 1940. They kept 100 to 125 registered ewes and sold their sheep at purebred sheep sales, state and nation wide.

Lana Lee, their only child, was born March 8, 1946. Lana loved to work with her father and the sheep. She helped him show at all the county as well as the Missouri State Fairs. Their sheep were entered at the American Royal and several other State Fairs including Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, and Texas. Lana had her own sheep project in the 4-H club, of which she was a member all the years she was eligible and lived on the farm. She, as well as her father, won her share of blue ribbons. Gerald was president of Missouri Corriedale Association for several years as well as a director from Missouri to the American Corriedale Association.

January 14, 1959, the farm home of the Bonderers was completely consumed by fire. Nothing was saved. They had been gone from the home only an hour when they returned to find it completely engulfed in flames. They built a small house at the same location, but they also bought a lot in Chillicothe and erected a home to live in, where they still reside. Margaret went back to the school room and Gerald continued operating the farm. They sold their sheep soon after this and increased the cow herd-mostly Charolais crossbred.

The farm has been increased in size and now contains 260 acres. One hundred twenty acres are in cropland and the rest is in pastures with two large lakes and two smaller ponds, one which is used for water to the house and barn.

Margaret is active in school and community affairs and Gerald’s pet project is Farm Bureau, which he helped to reorganize in the late thirties. He is a charter member and has held every office as well as having served on several committees. He has been an invited guest to the Governor’s Conference for Agriculture for several years.

Lana married Warren Henry of Evansville, Indiana, in March, 1971. They have just recently moved into a new home they had built in Gladstone, Missouri. Though Mr. Henry works as a systems analyst, he is connected with farming, being employed by Farmland Foods, Inc. The family hobbies, including Lana and Warren, are dancing, card playing, hunting, and fishing. Gerald attends the Catholic Church while other members of the family go to the Methodist Church.

The farm is very important to every member of the family and hopefully when the next centennial rolls around, this farm will carry on the heritage of the Bonderer family.

The children attended a little country school two miles from the farm which was called "Brush College." They walked this distance with the Sherman children who lived one-half mile west of them. The Bonderers were always active in school, church, and community affairs. Lawrence was Western District Judge of the County Court for six years from 1908-1914. During this time the present courthouse was constructed. He was active in extension work and helped get a county extension agent in Livingston County, was a charter member of the Farm Bureau which was formed in the county in the 20’s. Though the land was subject to overflow from Grand River and several crops were lost to floods, not nearly as many were lost as could have been, for the farm was all leveed by the family, using mules and a slip, as well as hand shovels. They worked with the Extension Service on fertilizer test plots for crops and pasture. The Bonderers, and a neighbor W. B. Merriman, shipped in a car load of limestone long before it was crushed and used in the county as a common practice. Gerald, next to the youngest son, stayed on the farm after the other children left and helped carry on the tradition of progressive farming. He first planted hybrid corn in the late 30’s and in 1940 sold Pioneer Hybrid Seed Corn to his neighbors and friends and really started the use of hybrid corn in the county. He got a ton of nitrogen fertilizer from Bob Garst and found out what it could do for his crops-he has used nitrogen on every acre of corn grown on the farm since that time. His corn has averaged over 100 bushels per acre for over thirty years, wheat between 40-50 bushels per acre, and soybeans over 40.

The farm, located 1½miles north of Highway 36, was always a problem as f ar as mud roads were concerned. During the depression, when W. P. A. was started, they let the W. P. A. open the quarry and crush rock. Their only pay was the g r a v e I i n g of this road. The Bonderers bought their first automobile in 1915-a Hupmobile-their next car was a Buick and somehow the Buick has been a tradition in the family since. Until the twenties farming had been done mostly with mules and "boys," then in the early 20’s a tractor was purchased, a Fordson. It rode harder than a mule and couldn’t pull much more but didn’t get tired.

In November, 1941, Gerald bought the farm from his parents, who moved into Chillicothe, Missouri. They lived at the Calhoun Street address until their deaths. Lawrence died in 1957 at the age of 88, Stella passed away in 1962 at the age of 92. They had celebrated their sixty-five years of marriage with a family gathering. Both are buried in the Catholic Cemetery.

Gerald married Margaret Grouse on January 17, 1942. Margaret’s family were also early settlers of the county. The Grouses settled in the Springhill Community three years prior to Bonderers coming to Utica. In fact, Gerald’s grandmother’s brother, Chris Seitters, married Margaret’s grandfather’s sister, Christina Grouse. The early Bonderer and Grouse families were friends and visited back and forth, traveling by buggy. They always remained overnight, for the distance between Springhill and Utica was too great to make in a day and get any visiting done. Lawrence Bonderer could remember families getting together in the fall of the year to make grape wine. - Gerald and Margaret Bonderer


Lewis and Linnie Bowen

Anthony Bowen was born in Greenbrier County, Virginia, in 1838. He was the son of Moses and Sarah Bowen. He moved with his parents to Daviess County, Mo., in 1855. Two years later, the family moved to Livingston County and settled on a farm in Blue Mound Township. He spent his youth and early manhood on the farm helping his father.

When the Civil War broke out, he enlisted in the Union Army. He held a captain’s commission in a Missouri regiment and served throughout the war. After the war he returned to Livingston County where he spent the remainder of his life. He homesteaded 160 acres in Fairview Township in 1866 where the present owner, Lewis Bowen, and his wife now live.

He was from a family of 12 children, 6 boys and 6 girls. He never married, but when he bought his farm three of his sisters made their home with him until his death in 1908. After his death, his sisters remained on the farm and rented the crop land.

In 1915 Lewis and his brother, Bert, bought the farm and continued to farm in partnership until Bert’s death in 1934. At that time Lewis and his wife bought Bert’s interest and continued to live there. In 1928, they built a house across the road from the old house. Mound Creek runs through part of the land. The farm has some creek bottom, 60 acres of timber, and the rest upland.

In early years they raised cattle, hogs, corn, wheat, and oats. In later years they added soybeans. In early years they did their farming with horses and mules. In 1947 Lewis bought his first tractor, which he still has and uses for odd jobs around the farm. In 1965 Lewis retired and rented the farming land.

Before rural mail delivery they had to get their mail at a post office one-half mile from the house. It was called the Ida Post Office, and it was run by Mrs. Mary Greener. When rural delivery came, they received their mail through the Dawn Post Office. Later they were transferred to Chillicothe, where they continued to be on Rural Route 2.

The burial grounds where the Bowens are buried are Burnside Cemetery in Fairview Township and Christison Cemetery in Blue Mound Township. - Lewis Bowen


Margaret, John, and Charles Casebeer

Daughter and sons of R. S. and Hattie (Hooker) Casebeer. Our farm, in Sec. 19-59-23, was a part of the Solomon R. Hooker farm. See Wallace and Edna Hooker farm history.


Mrs. Nolan (Esther) Chapman

My grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas D. Jones, came to this country in 1868. They brought their children, Esther, Dave, Ben, John, and Tom (my father). Father was fourteen at the time. He saw what was to him a strange crop growing here; later he found that it was corn. The family was from South Wales. They were sixteen days on the ocean. They landed at Castle Garden, New York. They arrived at Utica, Missouri, on the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad, the only train through here at the time (June, 1868). Utica was the largest town around here then. From there they walked to Dawn. They couldn’t tell when they got there and walked on past it. Father could speak no English at first, only "yes" and "no."

My grandmother died within two years. My grandfather bought part of the present farm in 1868. Father and grandfather lived there until father married Ida Patrick (my mother) in 1883. Their children were: Sam, Orville, Esther, Grace, Harvey, and Ethel (who died in infancy). The family attended Mt. Carmel Baptist Church. Members of the family are buried in the Welch and Christison Cemeteries.

The farm is located two and a half miles east of Dawn. A big branch ran through it and there was a pond. There were two mounds, said to be Indian mounds. There was a little timber at the north end. Crops were corn and wheat. We raised hogs and fat cattle which were sold and shipped; some were kept for our own use. We had a vegetable garden, fruit orchard, strawberries, and raspberries. One year we had so many peaches we put up 400 quarts and fed some of them to the hogs.

The first house had two rooms; later a kitchen was added. Later on, a two-story house was built. Part of the old house was moved down back of the chicken yard. We had dances there. My uncle came and played the fiddle.

We usually slaughtered five to seven hogs each year for our own use. These were cured in the smokehouse. The side meat was hung and the hams were packed in barrels. One time thieves got the side meat but missed the hams. Meat was stored in the icehouse. - Mrs. Nolan Chapman, Sr.


William Daniel and Mary Frances Coberley

This farm, the W ½, SE ¼ , Sec. 24-59-23, was owned in 1857 by Mary A. Coberley, who came from Ohio in 1850. It was deeded to her son, Jessie F. Coberley (1825-1897). He served in the Civil War and is buried in Wallace Cemetery. In 1925 the farm passed to a son, George W. Coberley (1879-1955). He is buried in Plainview Cemetery. In 1951 the farm passed to Jesse F. and Annie (Wilson) Coberley, then in 1966 to William Daniel and Mary Frances (Weitzel) Coberley. The old homestead was on this farm. As it is hilly ground, it is now used for pasture.


J. W. Cole

John Willis Cole was born on and has lived all but 1 ½ of his 79 years on a farm in Jackson Township that has been owned by his family for three generations. His grandparents, Moses and Sarah Cole, came to Livingston County from the vicinity of LaPorte, Indiana, in 1854. Moses was born in New York, June 17,1828. Sarah was born in New York, July 7, 1832, only three months after her parents, Peter and Sarah (Dare) Willson, arrived with their three other children from Taunton, England. Moses and Sarah were the parents of five children, Willson born in 1853, Willis born in 1855, Walter born in 1867, John D. born in 1869, and Daisy born in 1873.

Their son Willis married Susanna Wagner, April 17, 1879, and moved onto the acreage described in this article. They were the parents of nine children. Three sons, Cloddie, Fredrick Moses, and James, died in early childhood. Maye married Everett Stith; Gaye married Orville Maxwell; Ella married Thomas Bills; Ollie married Virgil Boone; Mary married Harry Shuler. John Willis, the present owner and occupant, married Grace Hicklin, April 17, 1938. They have two children, Mildred and Carl Willis, both living in Chillicothe. Carl and his wife, Marna, have a son, Michael.

The Cole family was closely associated with the Hicks rural school prior to its closing in 1960. Mr. and Mrs. Cole and their two children attended grade school there. Mr. Cole was on its board of directors for several years as was his father, and Mrs. Cole taught there before her marriage. Three generations, namely Moses, Willis, and J. W. Cole, were active members of the Masonic Lodge at Springhill.

Their farm is 2 ½ miles west of Springhill, a town important during the early settlement of Livingston County. A small store is said to have started there in 1836 and it had grown into a thriving community (at that time larger than Chillicothe) by the time Mr. Cole’s grandparents settled in the county. A Farmers Store was established there in the 1920’s. This was a cooperative which sold groceries and general merchandise and also purchased farm produce such as eggs, live poultry, milk, and lard. Mr. Cole was on its board of directors for several years. The store passed into private ownership in the 1950’s and is no longer in existence.

This centennial farm originally consisted of 80 acres (east half of the southwest quarter of section 34, township 59 of range 25 which lies along Indian Creek in Jackson Township and contains both creek bottom and hill land. It was first issued from the U. S. Government in 1840 to William S. Miller.

In the early days a subscription school was located on the southwest corner of the property. Attendance required payment to the teacher. Nothing is known of the school’s physical appearance except that split logs were used for the seats. Willis Cole was one of the pupils at this school.

Moses and Sarah Cole purchased the land July 28, 1873, from John T. and Hester Moss. A house and other farm buildings had been built on the property prior to that time but Moses and Sarah never lived on this acreage. They continued to reside at their home on property nearby and eventually acquired nearly 400 acres of land.

At that time most farm work was done by hand or by one-row machinery pulled by horses. Corn was cultivated with single or double shovels one row at a time; sometimes two or three trips through the field were made for each row. Small grain was cradled and hay was mowed by hand. Moses bought one of the first mowing machines in the vicinity and was careful to take it in from the field each night for fear that workers, whose labor it replaced, might damage it. He also had a machine for cutting grain but men had to follow this machine and tie the cut grain into bundles.

Willis Cole bought this 80 acres from his parents in 1897; the present residence was erected that same year. Native lumber was used in the construction of the frame house. Willis, with the help of a neighbor, did most of the labor for a total cost of $550.00. An 1898 tax receipt shows an assessed valuation of $660.00 and a total property tax of $7.59.

During the early 1900’s the farm’s main crops were corn, wheat, and oats. Willis Cole raised horses and mules for sale in addition to those needed for his own farm work. He also raised Galloway cattle. In addition to Indian Creek, two smaller creeks run through the property providing stock water. If a creek should run dry, there was a 58-foot well that supplied drinking water for the stock as well as for the household. Water was pumped in succeeding years by windmill, gasoline engine, and electric motor.

The present owner, J. W. Cole, began his farming career prior to his father’s death in 1922. He purchased this farm May 28, 1937, from the estate of his parents. The main cash crop today is soybeans, which Mr. Cole first raised in 1940. He recalls paying 650 per bushel for the first seed. In his farming career of over 50 years he has raised corn, wheat, hogs, and Angus cattle on his 400 acres of land. His lifetime has spanned a period of revolutionary change in farming procedures. When he began farming, machinery was drawn by horses and jobs, such as stacking hay and picking corn, were done by hand in contrast to today’s use of powerful, sophisticated machinery. - J. W. and Grace Cole


Irene Ballenger Drummond

Edward Ballenger in 1855 was given by the U. S. Government a land grant of 160 acres in Sec. 17, Twp. 59, Range 23, Cream Ridge Township. He married Elizabeth Louisa May, January 11, 1852. He was the son of Minor W. and Anna Ballenger of South Carolina and later of Boone County, Missouri.

His brother, Jonathan Thomas, was born in Boone County, February 4, 1838, and came to Livingston County with his widowed mother ten years later. He married Martha A. Parks of Boone County, September 21, 1858, and they became farmers on 120 acres of the original 160 acres in Sec. 17, and 20 acres in Sec. 20. They were the parents of eight children. Jonathan and his wife were faithful members of the Union Baptist Church where he also served as deacon, Jonathan died February 2, 1890; his wife died February 28, 1902. Both were buried in May Cemetery.

The youngest child, Jesse born 1877, continued to live on the farm with his mother after the death of his father. September 8, 1897 he married Rosa May Harman, daughter of Peter Harman and Amanda Jane Darr. Rosa taught in rural schools several years. Their only child, Irene, was born September 19, 1900. Jesse lost his mother and young wife on the same day, February 28, 1902. He died May 14, 1903. All were buried in May Cemetery.

Irene grew up in Chula in the home of an aunt, graduating from high school there. She taught school several years, attended college three years in Maryville, Mo., and was graduated from Brown’s Business College in St. Louis. She married William F. Drummond, Greencastle, Mo., at Carrollton, Mo., April 28, 1923. He was a veteran of World War 1, 89th Division, 356 Regiment, serving overseas 11 months. He was a graduate in accounting from St. Louis University. Four children were born to them, William Kenneth, Donald Foster, Ronald Lee, and Dorothy Irene. Mr. Drummond died in Independence, December 8, 1952, and was buried in May Cemetery.

The widow, Irene Ballenger Drummond, present owner of the farm, has lived there since 1955 in the original house built about 100 years ago by her grandfather, Jonathan Ballenger. She now has 10 grandchildren and one great-grandson. She is active in the Chula Baptist Church, and has been Tax Collector for Cream Ridge Township 16 years. - Irene Ballenger Drummond


Thomas and Edna Duncan

Henry M. Duncan was born in Kentucky, January 13,1809. When he was a small boy he moved to Chariton County, Missouri. Then in 1837 he married Nancy Woods, who was born November 9, 1818, in Missouri, the daughter of Silas Woods. She had a brother named George Woods, who moved to the State of Oregon, and became the third Governor of the State of Oregon, 1866-1870. Henry and Nancy Duncan had 10 children, and moved to Livingston County, Missouri, in about 1853. They lived in a log cabin and homesteaded 80 acres and purchased another 80 acres.

They had four sons: Thomas Adam, born in January, 1853; George, born in February, 1844; Benjamin, born September 19, 1854; and Henry L., who was born in July of 1859 and died in 1861. There were six girls: Josephine, July, 1840; Irene, March, 1842; Nancy, November, 1846; Mary, November, 1849; Margaret, March, 1851; and Cornelia, born April, 1857.

George Duncan was named after his Uncle George Woods (the Governor of Oregon).

Henry M. Duncan died in 1863 of consumption. Nancy kept the farm going with the help of the boys, George had to go to the Civil War and when he got out, he migrated out West. Ben also left. This left the burden on Thomas Adam Duncan I.

Thomas Adam Duncan married Sophia Twombly in 1880. They lived in the same log cabin until 1882. Then they moved into four rooms, and in 1909 four more rooms were added. They had three children: Keturah, born in 18811967; Lulu. born 1889-1971- and Thomas A. Duncan II, born 1891-1966. They lived on this farm with their mother, Nancy, until she died in 1894.

Then he, Thomas A. Duncan II, bought out the heirs in 1895, and lived there until January, 1930. Thomas Duncan II lived on this farm in another house he built in 1924, and his two sisters lived in the same house their mother and dad had lived in. Thomas A. Duncan II married Minnie Ann Woodard, born 1897-1968. They had three children, Neomi, June, and Thomas N. Duncan III.

Thomas A. Duncan II, Lulu, and Keturah received the farm in 1940. They owned it until 196 1, when Thomas N. Duncan III and Edna Duncan, the present owners, took possession. Thomas N. Duncan III married Edna Mae Powell in 1948. She was born south of Marceline, Missouri, in May of 1926, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charley Powell.

Thomas and Edna have three sons, all named after their great uncles and grandad. They are: Thomas N. Duncan IV, born August, 1949; George, born December, 1952; and Ben, born April, 1958. Their children are: Thomas Alva Duncan V, born January 28, 1974; Marti Ann, born January 14, 1975; and Jessee T. Duncan, born July 18, 1973.

The Thomas Duncan family now owns 1700 acres around the Hale community. George Duncan occupies the house that was built in 1882. Neomi Duncan Milberger moved to Kansas City and has three children, Diane, Beverly, and Eddie Carl. Neomi and her husband now own the Milberger Pest Control Company.

June Duncan Johnson lives at Avalon, Missouri, and owns 650 acres of farming land.

The members of the older Duncan family are buried in the Leaton Cemetery on the bank of the Grand River, and the rest of the family are buried in the Cameron Cemetery north of Hale. They attend the East Grace Methodist Church.

The family is known for its Registered Angus business. - Thomas and Edna Duncan


Michael S. Gilbert

One of the pioneer families of Livingston County was the family of Miles G. Gilbert.

Miles G. Gilbert was born in Milledgeville, Georgia, in 1804. His father, Martin Gilbert, obtained a grant of land there from the United States Government after his service in the Revolutionary War.

In 1832 Miles G. Gilbert went to Logan County, Kentucky, and married Mary Carr. In 1853, with their family of five children, Michael, Miles, James, Wilbur, and Susan, they came to Livingston County, Chillicothe, Missouri. They purchased a farm of 400 acres northeast of Chillicothe. While the timberland was being cleared and a log cabin being built for their home, the family lived in Chillicothe. While in Chillicothe Miles G. Gilbert was one of the trustees of the first Methodist Church built in Chillicothe in 1855 on north Locust Street.

Miles G. Gilbert died in 1858. He left a will and his wife, Mary W. Gilbert, was named executrix. She made a division to her children as directed in the will, giving each money, land, and a Negro slave (valued at $500.00). With the money given to them, Michael M. Gilbert went to school and became a doctor. He practiced in Jackson County and later went to Arizona, near Mesa, where he died in 1915. James L. Gilbert went to school in Lebanon, Tennessee, and studied for the Methodist ministry. Susan married N. M. Smith, a dentist, and lived in St. Louis until her death in 1890.

Miles G. Gilbert and a companion rode horseback to Vernon, Texas, where they homesteaded a large tract of land which was their future home. He came back to Missouri in 1863 and married Lucy Harriett Williams, daughter of George Williams of Sturges, Missouri. He died in 1925.

Wilbur R. Gilbert bought land from other heirs and acquired 240 acres of the original farm. He sold this to W. B. Popham in later years. W. R. Gilbert raised Registered Hereford cattle and farmed. His son, Harry Gilbert, was Recorder of Deeds of Livingston County. After finishing his courses in college, James L. Gilbert married Lyndia Nolan. They went to Vernon, Texas, near his brother, Miles G. Both James L. and Miles served in the Confederate Army under Col. W. M. Bush in 1863. In 1866 James L. Gilbert and family came back to Missouri where he continued his ministry. He died in 1906 and was buried in Ross Cemetery.

Mary W. Gilbert died January 8,1889 and was buried in Edgewood Cemetery. Miles G. Gilbert bought land from the heirs of the original farm and sold a tract of it to Michael S. Gilbert, son of James L. Gilbert, on April 5,1890. After clearing timber from the land a frame house was built by Gilmer Ogan, the new home of the family of Michael S. Gilbert I. After the death of Michael S. Gilbert in 1946 the farm was sold by the heirs of Michael S. Gilbert to Michael S. Gilbert II. The present owner of this land, Michael S. Gilbert, is the fifth generation of Gilberts to own land in Livingston County.

Miles G. Gilbert left a will written in 1857, leaving to his wife, Mary, all property including 440 acres, livestock, cash, bank stock, and slaves (eleven names included in the will), and at her death or remarriage, to the five children. Also there was to be an ample amount left of the money for their educations. - Michael S. Gilbert and Mrs. Grace Martin


Gerald C. and Ruth I. Graham

James Graham was born on December 11, 1833, in Roscoe, Coshocton County, Ohio. He married Margaret McCoully on November 26, 1857. He enlisted in the Ohio National Guard as an Ohio Volunteer for 100 days. He served from May 14, 1864, to September 13, 1864. Serving as a private under Captain John S. Daugherty, Co. G, Reg. 143; James was discharged at Camp Chase. He received a certificate of thanks and honorable service signed by Abraham Lincoln. These documents are dated December 15, 1864.

Moving to Missouri with his family in 1871, he purchased 80 acres which is located in Sec. 1759-23. This land was bought from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad Co. Later he purchased other land adjacent to the farm and operated a general farm. He died March 29, 1894. His wife, Margaret, was born in 1840 and died in 1914. Both are buried in the May Cemetery.

They were the parents of William O., Alice Leavell, Flora Carry, Emma Bethards, John, Lewis, Samuel F., and Granville Graham.

William O. Graham (1859-1930) later owned the farm. A bridge contractor, he built many bridges in the area. After his death, the farm was owned by his wife, Melda, and children, James, Lula, Butcher, Alice Cox, and Margaret Graham. Since 1947 it has been owned by Gerald C. and Ruth Graham. Granville Graham owned a well-boring rig which was powered by one horse. He drilled many of the wells in this area. James Graham was a cashier in Chula and Chillicothe banks. - Ruth Graham


Harold and Ruth E. Gray

Samuel A. Gray was a soldier in the Civil War for three years and returned home to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. On February 23, 1865, he and Margaret Montgomery were married and left for the prairies of northwest Missouri to buy land and make their home. They came by steamboat from Pittsburgh to Hannibal, and by railroad to Chillicothe. They brought with them a trunk and $1,000.00 which her father had given them. The money was sewed in her dress belt for safe keeping. They had friends from Pennsylvania with whom they stayed until they were settled. They bought 200 acres from the railroad, a mile and a half northeast of Avalon. Their first home was a two-room log cabin. Down

the hill was a spring from which they carried water. The land was mostly timber that had to be cleared before it could be farmed.

Grandfather went by horseback to Chillicothe to get mail, food, and supplies; and went to Utica to the mill for flour. He crossed the river by swimming his horse. Bushwhackers were still around and he was in danger since he was from the northern army.

Here 10 children were born. Two pairs of twin girls died in infancy. Two others died in childhood. Four grew to maturity, Robert, Luella, William, and Harry.

After clearing the timber they planted hedge rows for fences. One row stood for years as a landmark between Grand River and Fairview Townships. In 1869 grandfather helped build the Presbyterian Church; later he was a member and deacon. In 1884 he built a new two-story house near the public road that had been put in. Grandmother’s father from Pennsylvania came here to help them build it. They also built a hen house and two barns across the road.

On February 23, 1915, they celebrated their 0th wedding anniversary. Three of their children were present - Mrs. Luella Canning, William, and Harry Gray, his wife and daughter, Margarite, who was the only grandchild at the time. September 5th, 1919, Samuel A. Gray passed away, followed by Mrs. Gray in July of 1934. They are buried in the Avalon Cemetery.

On September 9, 1924, Harold Beever Gray was born to Harry and Zoa Gray. He was the second grandchild. When he was ten years old they moved over to the old home place. Harold Gray and Ruby Hutchison were married in Chillicothe on July 2, 1944. He was inducted into the army in November of the same year, and was discharged in July of 1946. They are the parents of four children: Harold Samuel, 1945; John Orval, 1947; Donna Kay, 1951; and Ronald D., 1955.

On July 5,1957, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Gray celebrated their Golden Wedding anniversary in the same home that his parents had 42 years earlier. Mr. Gray passed away in 1967 and Mrs. Gray in 1968. Margarite and Harold divided the 200 acres, Harold taking the east 60 acres and the 40 acres on which the old house stands. He raises crops, cattle, and hogs. - Harold and Ruth Gray


Harry and Joyce (Yeomans) Hayen

During the Revolutionary War three Yeomans brothers came to America as soldiers for the King of England. After the war was over they were given land grants in Canada and settled in Belleville, Ontario.

John Herkimer Yeomans was born in Belleville on July 29, 1827. He was a grandson of one of the three brothers and was named after a British general of the Revolutionary War, General Herkimer. He grew up in Belleville and was a carpenter and farmer. He traveled to Australia for a time. He was married to Miss Phoebe Knight, and while living in Belleville they were the parents of three children: Augusta, born in 1860; Lill, born in 1862; and John Asa, born on July 10, 1864.

In 1865 John Herkimer came to Chillicothe and worked as a carpenter, helping to build the building still standing on the northeast corner of the square, known as the Slater Building. He liked the climate and the town so much that he sent for his family. They moved to Chillicothe in 1866. While living in Chillicothe they had two more children: George, born in 1872; and Mabel, born in 1875.

On July 11, 1876, John purchased an 80-acre farm from R. B. Price, located five miles southeast of Chillicothe, and built a house on the farm to which the family moved in the spring of 1877. The children all attended the rural Oak Grove School, which was one mile north of the farm, and also Sunday School, which was held in the schoolhouse on Sundays. Phoebe Yeomans was a Sunday School teacher.

The eldest child, Augusta, died at the age of 23 of an ailment called quick consumption at that time. Lill married Elisha Israel, a Civil War veteran, and moved away. John A. and some neighbors bought a horse powered threshing machine and did threshing around the neighborhood. They did so well with it that they traded it for a new Nichols and Shepherd steam outfit. Around 1890 John A. bought the 80-acre farm across the road and did carpentry work and raised hogs to pay for it.

John Herkimer suffered a stroke and died on June 3, 1894, at the age of 66. His wife, Phoebe, continued to live on the farm with the children until her death, December 27, 1906. They are both buried in the Edgewood Cemetery in Chillicothe. The farm was inherited by the two sons, John A. and George. Later on John bought George’s 40 acres making him owner of the original 80-acre farm. John met Miss Iva Walton and they were married on April 2, 1896, in Chillicothe at her parents’ home. They built some more rooms on to the back of the house and lived there. They were the parents of two sons, Norman Knight, born on January 18, 1897, and John Walton, born August 22, 1898.

In 1910 John A. was elected Judge of the Eastern District of the County Court and served two terms for a total of four years. During this time the present courthouse was constructed and his name is on the cornerstone. In 1915 the family joined the Pleasant Grove Methodist Church. John A. was also a member of the Modern Woodmen of the World organization and the AntiHorse Thief Association. The present barn was

built in 1909 by Van Fullerton. The first automobile owned by the family was a 1916 Model T Ford. Norman and John W. attended the Oak Grove School and high school in Chillicothe. Norman is a veteran of World War I.

In 1932 John W. married Miss Mary Ballew, the school teacher at the Oak Grove School. They lived with his parents while building a house on the 80-acre farm across the road and moved into it when it was completed. Their children are: John Edward Yeomans, born September 3, 1933; Roy Eugene Yeomans, born February 21, 1935; and Joyce Emma Yeomans, born October 26,1939. They also attended the rural Oak Grove School and high school in Chillicothe.

Norman married Miss Hattie Overstreet from Newtown, Missouri, and for a short time they lived with his mother, then moved to an adjoining farm which they purchased. They are the parents of one son, Dr. Ronald Norman Yeomans, born December 8, 1940. In 1947 they moved to Newtown and Ronald attended elementary school there. They then moved to Fayette, Missouri, in 1955 and he attended high school there and also was graduated from Central Methodist College.

John A. Yeomans died from a stroke on April 21, 1939, and is buried in Edgewood Cemetery. At his death the original 80-acre farm went to his oldest son, Norman, and the 80-acre farm across the road went to his other son, John W. Ivy continued to live on the farm until her death in May of 1973. She is also buried in Edgewood Cemetery. Norman and Hattie moved back to Chillicothe in 1964 and continue to reside there.

John E. Yeomans, the oldest grandchild of John A. Yeomans, was married to Miss Dottie McQueen in 1952. They are the parents of two daughters, Teresa Lynne and Cheryl Diane. They are presently living in Chillicothe where he is employed by Milbank Mills.

Roy E. Yeomans married Barbara Wimer in 1971. They have four children, Polly, Bobby, Mark, and Douglas. They live in Prairie Village, Kansas, where he is employed by the Kansas Highway Department.

Joyce E. married Harry Hayen in 1960. They are the parents of three children, Debra Joyce, Lisa Kaye, and William Harry. They are the present owners and live on the original 80-acre farm, having purchased it from Norman and

Hattie Yeomans in 1973. Harry is engaged in farming.

Ronald N. Yeomans married Miss Helen Neptune in 1963. They are the parents of two children, Elaine and Eric. They are presently living in Phoenix, Arizona, where he is a doctor specializing in the field of gynecology and obstetrics.

100-year farm of the Yeomans family

First settler - John Herkimer Yeomans

Birthplace - Belleville, Ontario, Canada

Date of birth - July 29, 1827

Moved to Livingston County -1866

Occupation - Carpenter

Married - Phoebe Knight

Died - June 3, 1894

Buried - Edgewood Cemetery, Chillicothe, Mo.

Descendants: Augusta - 1860; Lill - 1862; John Asa - 1864; George -1872; Mabel -1875

Purchased farm - July 11, 1876

Second owner - John Asa Yeomans

Birthplace - Belleville, Ontario, Canada

Date of birth - July 10, 1864

Moved to Livingston County - 1866

Occupation - Farmer

Married - Iva Walton

When - April 2, 1896

Died - April 21, 1939

Buried - Edgewood Cemetery, Chillicothe, Mo.

Descendants: Norman Knight Yeomans, January 18, 1897; John Walton Yeomans; August 22, 1898

Third owner - Norman K. Yeomans

Birthplace - Chillicothe, Mo.

Date of birth - January 18, 1897

Occupation - Farmer

Married - Hattie Overstreet

When - 1940

Descendant: Ronald Norman Yeomans

Fourth and present owners: Harry and Joyce Hayen

Harry was born May 5, 1937, in Linn County, Mo.

Joyce was born October 26, 1939

Married - in Livingston County, Mo. on April 3, 1960

Descendants: DebraJoyce, July 3, 1961; Lisa Kaye December 17, 1962; William Harry, October 3, 1969

Farm History

Location: Five miles southeast of Chillicothe, Missouri.

Type of land: Prairie

There is an old buffalo wallow on the farm.

The original house was built in 1877 and an addition was built on around 1896.

The original barn was built in 1909 by Van Fullerton and is still standing. - Joyce Hayen


Ethlyn Warner Hill

Our (Warner) family originated in Pennsylvania. The great-grandfather, William Warner, was born in Barks County, Pa., July 20, 1807. The great-grandmother, Mary Ann (Stauffer) Warner, was born in the same county on June 30, 1819. They were married in Shelby County, near Flat Rock in Indiana. They were the parents of 13 children. Lewis Warner (who was my grandfather) was their fifth child. He was born March 1, 1846. His wife, Sarah Ackenback, was born October 18, 1847. They were married December 20, 1868. They were the parents of seven children; Melissa, September 21, 1869; Mary Ann, June 1, 1871; Alonzo, May 9, 1873; Martin (my father), February 7, 1876; George William, March 11, 1878; Pearl, December 31, 1880; and Linnie, September 17, 1883. All the children were born on a farm located one mile north of Ludlow, Mo., and 1 ¼ miles west.

Description of the 80 acres: W ½ of SA of Sec. 19, Township 56, Range 25, containing 80 acres, more or less. Lewis Warner bought the land from the railroad May 10, 1871. Sarah died January 12, 1885, at the age of 37. Lewis died November, 1902, somewhere in the West. Martin bought the land from the heirs in 1903. He married Lola Bryan in 1902. They moved to the place and lived there from 1902 to 1926. They had two children: Lewis, born in 1904; and Ethlyn Hill, born in 1921.

In the early years there was an orchard on the farm. A fire started from the railroad and destroyed it. It is creek bottom land and general crops. Quite a number of hogs were raised and these were driven, on foot, to Braymer to be loaded on the train. All the family went to the little country school, the Yahns and the Warner School which still stands. - Ethlyn Warner Hill


Wallace T. and Edna Hooker

Solomon Rice Hooker was born November 20, 1805, in Windham County, Vt., a son of John Hooker of English-Scotch descent, who came to Vermont from Scotland in the early settlement of the state. Solomon Hooker was a cousin of General Joseph Hooker. Lucinda Mariah (Webber) Hooker, second wife of Solomon R. Hooker, was born November 20, 1815, in Worthington, Mass. Mrs. Hooker was a daughter of John and Hannah Webber, whose ancestors came from Holland.

Some years before the Hookers came to Missouri, Mr. Hooker’s sister, Mary, had married Warren Waite, and had moved to Chillicothe, Mo. The Hookers stayed with the Waites while a log cabin was built. Both Hooker and Waite were carpenters. History states these men built the first. frame dwelling in Chillicothe, Mo.

Mr. Hooker purchased 80 acres of land four miles north of the then small town of Chillicothe, Mo.; "W ½ NW Sec. 7, Rich Hill Twp., Nov. 4, 1839" Ch. XXI, p. 1175, History Caldwell and Livingston Counties. On this site a log cabin was built in which the five Hooker children were born. Namely: George Webber, born 1840; Henry, born 1842, died of measles at age five; John Edward, born 1845; Harriet Eliza, born 1846; and Zachary Taylor, born 1849.

In the spring of 1850 the Hookers sold this farm, intending to go to California. Due to a cholera outbreak there, they abandoned the idea and bought a farm four miles farther north, N ½ 19-23-59. Here Mr. Hooker built a large, frame house, later known as "Grassy Creek Inn." Here food and lodging could be had for passengers and drivers of the stage. This stage carried mail between the towns of Trenton and Chillicothe. On August 22,1851, he was appointed Postmaster of Grassy Creek Post Office.

On the night of June 17, 1863, he was shot, and the house was burned, however, he survived the injury. Fearing further retribution, the Hookers, homeless and the father wounded, decided to leave Missouri for the duration of the war. Livingston County was now under martial law and governed by a provost martial who granted Mr. Hooker’s request to leave the state. They went to Tipton, Cedar County, Iowa, to stay with the Warren Waites family, who lived there. It was the same Waite family with whom they stayed back in 1839 down in Missouri. Before beginning the exodus to Iowa, Mr. and Mrs. Hooker provided for the keep of their 14-year-old son, Zachary Taylor. Their near neighbors and closest friends, Mr. and Mrs. James May, consented to keep Taylor during the spring and summer months until the Hookers returned. Dr. John Marlow and his wife were to keep Taylor the fall and winter months and send him to a near-by "subscription" school.

George, the eldest son, joined the "Confederate" army in 1861, was wounded, and left for Wyoming in 1863. John Edward, second son, too young to join the army, left in 1864 for Montana in search of his brother, and died the same year near Nevada City, Mont. Their daughter, Harriet, accompanied her parents to Iowa.

Mr. and Mrs. Solomon Hooker and their daughter, Harriet, returned to Missouri in either the fall of 1866 or the spring of 1867. George, their oldest son, returned from Wyoming to Missouri some time in 1866. A new house was begun for the Hookers to live in. My father gave the following information concerning the house: "It was the same size, same plan, a replica of the old one, built on the old ‘mudsill’ foundation, but not nearly so nicely finished inside." He also said that it was completed in 1870.

Once again Mr. and Mrs. Hooker were united in their own home with their three children, George, Harriet, and Taylor, who cared for them the rest of their days. Mr. Hooker died February 4,1879, and Mrs. Hooker died February 11, 1882. Both were buried in Macedonia Cemetery, about five miles north of Chillicothe, Mo.

A large Water Oak tree that stood some 20 feet north of the burned house, survived many years after the fire. Its charred trunk bore mute witness of those sorrowful days of the past. "The Postmaster of Grassy Creek," too, had learned to survive a bodily wound and to live several useful years afterwards. After the deaths of Mr. and Mrs. Hooker, the two Hooker brothers and their sister remained on the home place until 1887. That year the sister married W. T. Harper, a widower with a small daughter named Lizzie. George and Taylor purchased their sister’s share in the farm, Harriet (Hooker) Harper died May, 1893, and was buried in the Macedonia Cemetery.

Taylor Hooker married Dixie Wallace, October 29, 1890, a daughter of William J. Wallace and his second wife, nee Elizabeth Williams. Mr. Wallace was the first settler in Medicine Township, Livingston County, Mo., spring of 1837, on NW ¼ , Sec. 5, Twp. 59, Rg. 22. "History of Caldwell and Livingston Counties" p. 926. Dixie was a schoolteacher and a missionary to Chile, South America (1884-86). She and Taylor "set up" housekeeping on the home place and made a home for their brother, George, until his death March 20, 1915. Dixie died January 24, 1924. Taylor died February 27, 1929. George, Taylor, and Dixie are buried in the May Cemetery, three miles southwest of Chula, Mo. Our father, Taylor Hooker, left each of his children an equal acreage of the old farms; Hattie (Hooker) Casebeer, George W. Hooker, and myself, Wallace T. Hooker. My wife, Edna Case Hooker, and I have lived on 80 acres N ½ of NE ¼ Sec. 19, Twp. 59, Rg. 23, of the farm since 1922. - Wallace Hooker


O1a Burner Hooten

Jacob Stover Burner purchased a large tract of land from the United States Government, October 25, 1855, and later sold off parcels to others. He also gave a plot of ground for part of Blue Mound Cemetery. He kept forty (40) acres the NE ¼ of NW ¼ , Sec. 26, Twp. 56, Range 24, which has been handed down and sold to members of the Burner family for one hundred twenty years.

Jacob Stover Burner and wife, Eliza Cave Burner, raised a family of six children: Andrew, who was a lawyer in Carrollton, Mo.;

Mary E. Burner Mead; Susan M. Burner Hooker; John Samuel; Sara C. Burner Goff, and Thomas H., who passed away before 1899. All except Andrew lived and farmed near the Blue Mound area.

Some time later Jacob S. Burner and wife sold 40 acres (the NW ¼ of the NE ¼, Sec. 26, Twp. 36, Rng. 24) to Henry Bean and wife. Then on August 23, 1879, John Samuel Burner, son of Jacob Stover, bought this 40 acres back from Henry Bean, which makes this 40 acres 97 years in the family.

John Samuel Burner married Laura Isabella Haynes and farmed in this vicinity his entire life, having been given 40 acres, in Sec. 26, Twp. 56, Rng. 24, this NE ¼ of NW ¼ , as a wedding present by his parents, Jacob Stover and Eliza Cave Burner.

The family of John Samuel and Laura Haynes Burner consisted of 11 children: Laurenia, who married a Doctor Wooden; John Jacob, who married Ollie Holmes; Maud Estella married Herb Elsas; Virgil A., who never married; Sarah Ellen, who passed away at the age of twenty-two; Grover Cleveland married Christina Newton; Charlie Allen died at age twelve; Minnie married Roy Wooden; Franklin Ashford married Frankie Mathews; Viola May (Ola) married Thomas Hooten; and Laura Ann (Lena) married Roy Siders. All made their homes in Livingston County.

In August of 1927, Thomas Hooten and wife, 01a Burner Hooten, bought these two 40-acre sites, located in Blue Mound Township (the NE¼ of the NW¼ and the NW¼ of the NE1/4, Sec. 26, Twp. 56, Rng. 24), from her father John Samuel Burner, and have made it their home. Thomas passed away in 1946. They had three children: Marion, who is living with his mother on the farm; Martha, who married Fred Telaneus and lived near Chillicothe, but since his death has made her home in Hannibal, Mo.; and Merle, who passed away February, 1967. - Ola Burner Hooten


Gary W. and Sheryl Hudgins

This acreage is part of the land purchased by John Rockhold from the U. S. Government, May 1, 1843. He was a very early settler in Livingston County, having purchased other land in 1835. The Rockholds were originally of German origin. He is the great-great-grandfather of the present owners.

Warren T. Hudgins, grandfather of the present owners, married Nannie May Rockhold. His father was John Hudgins, born in Lawrenceburg, Anderson County, Kentucky in 1826. He came to Livingston County with his parents in 1842. He served in the Mexican War and in 1849 went to California. In 1853 he married Susan Stamper and they were the parents of twelve children. He was a member of the Mooresville Christian Church and a charter member of the Masonic Lodge at Breckenridge. He died suddenly November 25, 1910, and was buried in the Mooresville Christian Church Cemetery.

The following was printed in the Breckenridge newspaper at the time of his death:

"It is to the sturdy pioneers, of John Hudgins type, that the younger generation of today, owe the blessings of a great commonwealth like Missouri the. He and others of his kind, subdued the wilderness, and laid the foundation of what may now be termed, an Eden, for man’s habitation.

"John Hudgins came with his parents to Livingston County) when it and the counties adjoining it, were one vast wilderness. The family came from Kentucky, where they had been neighbors of that old scout and hunter, Daniel Boone. Indians were still to be found in this section of the country, when the Hudgins family arrived and white settlers were scarce. Game of all kinds was very plentiful. Hunting and trapping formed the chief occupations.

"In 1846 Mr. Hudgins enlisted and went to the Mexican War with his cousin, Warren Hudgins, and J. F. Meek, George W. Cranmer, and William Marlow, all of Livingston County. He was the proud possessor of a number of beautiful medals, that he had received at the different reunions of the Mexican War Veterans. He delighted in showing these to his friends, they were to the old veteran as, the trophies of the hunt.’

"He ever delighted to tell of his crossing the plains, in 1849, to the gold fields of California. He went the southern route along the Yuma River. Few men who went this route ever lived to return to their home and tell of their adventures. Nothing gave the venerable man more pleasure than to tell of this hazardous venture.

"In the early fifties he carried the mail from Brunswick to Gallatin, Mo., making one trip each way in a week. To the lonely housewives, along his route, there was no more welcome visitor than John Hudgins, for he brought to them the news from the outside world, and often a letter from the folks at home, ‘way back east.’ During the Civil War, he performed a like service for the government in carrying the mail from Breckenridge to Liberty, Mo. He had many thrilling adventures on this route, often being in danger of his life.

"After the Civil War he settled on his farm near Mooresville. Here he reared his family and followed the peaceful and happy life of the Missouri farmer. After the death of his wife he continued to reside here, with his daughter Miss Erin, as his homekeeper."


On the 6th day of May, 1849, 1, John Hudgins, Mooresville, Livingston County, Mo., drove out of my father’s yard with eight yoke of oxen hitched to a large Kentucky Turnpike wagon loaded with about 6000 pounds of provisions, mostly flour, bacon, sugar, coffee, with 10 gallons of alcohol and 1 gallon of cholera medicine. I owned three-quarters of the outfit, and Warren M. Hudgins, a cousin, owned one-fourth. My two brothers, James and Humphrey, aged respectively 17 and 15, accompanied us.

The first day out we joined six other wagons belonging to the following parties from this county: Stone Brothers and McCrosky, two; Lawson, one; Patrick, one; Gobin and Shafer, one; and Woolfcale, one.

We expected to go the South Pass route, and intended to cross the Missouri River at St. Joseph. The spring was cold and wet which made the grass late and traveling slow. On the I Ith we were in the west part of Clinton County. We sent a man ahead to see about crossing the river. He reported that the ferry was two weeks behind, and the people there were dying with the cholera like hogs. We heard that there was a small boat at Westport Landing, or Kansas City, as it is now called.

We turned south through Smithville and Barry, drove up the bottom to the ferry, and crossed ourselves, with the negro boss who had charge of the boat, which was a small one and would only take one wagon and one yoke of oxen at a load. It took two trips for each outfit. We cordelled the boat up against the current each trip on the south side about one-fourth mile so as to make up for what she drifted down each trip.

There was a ledge of rock five or six feet above the water on the south or Jackson County side. Along the edge of the water was a lot of clothing that had been thrown away, the cholera having run out or killed all but three persons that we saw, one merchant, one blacksmith, and the Negro ferryman. We got everything safe across and got out past Westport (Kansas City).

Next morning, the 13th, Uncle Antony (Patrick’s servant), took cholera. We gave all the medicine and nursing that we could, but we were camped out on the prairie out of sight of timber. John Stone and I rode some five or six miles and found some dead willows which the prairie fires had killed. We cut a large bundle each and carried them to the camp to build a fire for the sick man, but it did no good. He died in the tent with mud and water all around. The oxen chained to the wagon, were up to their knees in mud. We laid by two days. Antony died in the night, and as soon as it was light, we yoked up the oxen and started the wagons, and left a detail of four men to bury the dead, myself one of them.

We had spades but no picks. The ground was so soft that we did not think that we would need them. When we got down about two feet we came to hard pan that we could not dig with the spade, so we hollowed and fitted it as well as we could, rolled him in his blankets and covered him up. Then we cut sods and raised a mound four feet high over him. His master and comrade from childhood had gone on with the wagons and I never saw more sincere grief. They had been more than brothers from early childhood.

Next day we camped at Big John Spring, still cloudy and raining showers, four cases of cholera but we cured them with frequent doses of medicine. Here a train overtook us with the horse, saddle, and saddle bags of Reuben McCroskie who had started to overtake his wagon horses. ‘Back three days after we left home, our change in our route had put him one day more behind. He left an old acquaintance’s camp after eating a hearty breakfast, and was found before noon dead beside the road. S. Stone, his partner, sold his horse to Patrick and that night she was stolen by the Kaw Indians. I found their trail and wanted to follow to their village, take the best horse that we could find, and keep it until they brought the stolen horse back. Patrick was afraid we would get into trouble with the Indian agents at Council Grove.

The weather cleared and we pushed on to Diamond Spring. The wagons, teaming us until we thought we were strong enough for the Camanchees. Thirty-eight wagons, and about 150 men and boys, one woman and three children, were organized by their electing Captain Gully, Captain J. Patrick, Lenten, and three Sargents, divided the men into three guards. Each came on duty once every three days. They had charge of the cattle and camp guard. The night watch was divided into three reliefs of two hours and a half. The duty of the Sargents was hard. He had to stay up until he put the third relief on post. We had a written contract which all signed binding every man to obey orders or be expelled from the train. There was in the train some 10 or 15 men, who had served in Mexico in the First and Second Missouri Cavalry, and some of us had crossed the plains twice before and were pretty well acquainted with the wiles of the Indians.

At Big Cow Creek we saw the first buffalo sign and a few old bulls, but did not hunt any until we got to the big bend of the Arkansas. G. Stone and I killed two fat cows and nearly every man that had a horse chased and shot at buffalo. As we were returning to the road that evening loaded with fat cow meat, some half dozen men that had come to us when we were butchering the cows that we had killed, had all the meat that they could pack on their horses. A bunch of two hundred or more buffalo calves that had been left behind in the mad chase of the herd ran close to us, and every man except G. Stone and I fired into them. None fell, but some must have died from wounds. This wanton destruction seems to be the native instinct of the western pioneer.

We crossed the Arkansas at the lower Cimarron Crossing and that morning I saw my last wild buffalo. A solitary old bull came down through the sand and crossed a mile above as we were breaking camp. I saddled the mare and overtook him at the edge of the butte, shot him through the lungs, and as he was bleeding a man from the train came up and shot him several times with a large bore rifle, square in the forehead. It had dried in his matted forstags until it was a doby. Parties from the train came out and took his meat and marrow, which was the cause of some trouble.

Shafer, who was one of the Sergents, was an old hunter who got a goodly portion of the old bull. That night he was on duty, and he was drying this meat by his camp fire. The writer was one of his guards and was on the second relief. The cattle were not corralled. We herded them on the best grass near the corral but when they lay down the outside of the herd was a quarter of a mile or more from the corral. As was the custom, we always put the soldiers on the most extreme parts. I was posted at the extreme end of the cattle and having served some 18 months as a Scout in a Cavalry Regiment I had learned to tell time by the dipper and the North Star. I put with my back against an old ox and watched for Indians until I knew our time was up. No sign of relief guard. I walked up to the next sentry. A man by the name of John and I talked it over and both of us were sure that we had overstayed our time. I told him to pass there in and ask the Sargent of the Guard and could get no reply. Says I, "Jake, holler Indians," not thinking he would be fool enough to do it. He yelled at the top of his voice, "Indians, Indians, and I can’t get my gun off. Most of the men in the camp were awake and heard him and such a stampede, falling over ox yokes and cussing and swearing, and most of them seemed sorry that it was a false alarm.

We had a false alarm before we crossed the Arkansas. We had several instruments in the train. Drum, fife, coronet, and fiddles and some nights they would give a concert that would annoy our guard and divert the wolves. One night the men on guard thought they would give them a scare and break up the concert. They were herding the cattle some distance from the corral. They fired one gun and then all of them fired and we at the corral thought it was a real attack. This showed what the men were, only part of the men rallied to the rescue of the herders. We found them laughing and had hard work to keep us from stampeding the cattle. This was all against the rules, but it had to be overlooked. It did some good as it showed who to rely on in danger.

All of us from Livingston County had intended to go the Platte or South Pass route but the cholera and the opinion of the old plainsmen that there was not grass to support the increased emigration beyond Salt Lake and that only the advance guard would get through, the balance would starve. We planned to go to New Mexico and swap our wagons and oxen for mules and pack the Spanish trail. I have forgotten to give the names of our County men: Sam Patrick, his two sons, Levi, Den, and Antony, who we buried on the plains of Kansas; Sam, John N. and William Stone; Charles V. Matison; Ruben McCrosky, who died before overtaking us; Bradly Ogle; Eli Anderson; Sam Shafer; Ab and W. Lawson; G. W. Woolfeale and servant, Al and Lookewood; John, Warren, James, and Humphrey Hudgins, the last two boys aged 15 and 17.

We had an exciting time after we left the Cimarron. At Cimarron there was a fine spring but all the grass eaten off around so we watered everything, filled kegs and passed up the valley a mile or more. Camped in a narrow valley with splendid grass. The valley some hundred fifty yards wide. We camped corralling in the road on the right side of the gulley. Through the valley meandered a dry creek bed 20 or 30 feet wide and 10 to 15 feet deep. The bed of it was dry and grass and weeds growing everywhere and no appearance of water to run here for years. Our cattle were herded some half mile farther up the valley. About midnight the camp guard was alarmed by cattle herders crying "Water, water." The horses were picketed close to the wagons and most of them across the ravine. Men hastened without dressing to move the horses and they could hear the water roaring and had to cut many of the picket ropes and jump on the horses and swim out. The waters raised up to the front hubs. On one side of the corral we stood by ready to move the wagons by hand but saw that the wave was past. It did not rain at the corral and a mere sprinkle where the cattle were. Before we left next morning you could not water a horse where there had been 15 feet of water six hours before.

On the 2nd of July, 1849, we got in the vicinity of Los Vegas. There were some four or five trains from Missouri all expecting to trade oxen and wagons for mules. Here I found an uncle that I had not seen for years with his wife and two small children, and all he had was one small Missouri mule and saddle and his and family clothes, he having contracted with a man to haul him and family to the mines and here he had balked and said he would go no farther. There was no law and so he was in a strange land with no money and no friends, wife and two small children, one a babe at the breast. He offered me 500 dollars to haul him and family to the mines. Only three-fourths of the outfit belonged to me so I told him I could do nothing without the consent of my partner, but if he was willing I would take him as far as I could. I swapped his little mule and the saddle for one yoke of oxen and a good wagon.

We celebrated the fourth at the Tucalate mountain. We were in greater trouble and confusion. Some thought we could go the Gila route with ox teams. We followed the Santa Fe Road through Tecalate. St. Nagil to near the old Pecos church, where we took the left hand road and camped at the foot of the Manzona mountain. Here we had good grass and water and as there were plenty of pitch pine we burnt several tar kilns. There were two other big trains camped in the same neighborhood so the three trains agreed to raise one thousand dollars to pay Lerouse, an old trapper comrade of Carson, to pilot us through San Antonio to Southern California. We sent three men into Santa Fe to make the bargain but he would not accept, saying that if we had mule teams or pack mules he could take us through but oxen could not go through the desert of the Gila and Colorado. We could not turn back so our train hired a Mexican, named Parqual Monteers to pilot us to Tuscon. We lay at the Manzona about 15 days during the time 30 of us went on a gold hunting expedition with a Mexican, who claimed to have been a prisoner of the Apache. We traveled southeast over a high place, the divide between the Rio Grande and the Pecos and passed two small, insignificant mountains and went as far south as where Fort Stanton is now located, and turned back because the guide said the next march would be 40 leagues without water.

We moved from the mountain. Our cattle had rested and were so fat that we feared that they would stampede. The next camp that I can recollect was Dripping String and here the cattle did stampede twice the first night. A loose horse ran in among them and part of them ran through the corral. Part of them did not go but a few miles when they stopped. I had struck off to the left up a valley. Four of us followed their trail, one calf was with this bunch. In a short time I found the calf track went off to itself with a big cougar track after it. We knew it was no use to hunt it farther. One steer track broke off to the east. I followed, leaving four men to follow the trail of the eight steers. They lost theirs to follow mine across the point of the mountain, where the steer had come to a dry arroyo, which he followed up until he came to water, for I met him coming looking wild and seared, but I got above him and as there was an old trail leading down the arroyo, I knew this would take me to the foot of the mountain and to the road. I got in with him at dark.

We put all the cattle in the corral which was chained up by hind wheel to fore wheel. The rear or hind end of the corral was open about 25 feet wide. Here we had three guards with ox whips, one on each side and one in the middle. We had a very large, stout man from Illinois named Warner in the middle. Before I had finished my supper, one steer horned another and he bawled and away they went. Warner was down in a second and over him they went, and I never heard a man holler so fast or so loud in my life as he did. He said that at least 25 steers jumped straight over him.

They could not turn for they went out in a mass altogether. We found the next evening, 30, away from camp badly used up, many lame from running over the rocks. We yoked and chained them up from this time on and picketed them. We found this was the cheapest and safest.

We crossed the Rio Grande at Lahocta. Here, with two canoes from the Mexicans fastened together made a platform and ferried over about half the loads. When the boys that were herding the cattle half a mile above, went in swimming they found a place that, by blocking up the wagon beds nearly to the top of the standards, we could cross without unloading. Where we were crossing with the canoes it was very deep for a short piece, so four of us swam across and towed the canoes down the bar to the shore.

We traveled down the west bank of the Rio Grande to near Donomer and left it the first of September. Firstt camp Foster’s Hole, then Mimba, Oga Baca, Oga Oso, and Wolf Spring, grass good, water scarce and bad. We went down the pass of Guadaloupe, where we had to let our wagons down with ropes tied on to the hind axle and the oxen had to slide down. When we got to the head of the river that Tuscon is on we were surprised by Mexicans coming into our camp. They were deserters from a force that had been sent out after the Apache, who had been raiding the Mexican settlements. We had their signal smoke by day and their fires by bed. We guarded them carefully. As they were afraid of us, they did not molest us, though we hunted in small parties. A part of the country that we passed over had been settled by the Mexicans, who had established cattle ranches, but the Indians had killed or driven them away and there were some cattle and horses running wild. We killed some cattle but all we saw were bulls and harder to kill than buffalo. Woolfscale killed a fat horse, brought in some of the steaks. Although I had eaten a hearty supper, I broiled a big slice of it and it ate better than the bull beef.

On the site close above Tuscon we passed some old churches that had been hand built by the padres long ago. Built with unburnt brick as dobies hundred years ago. They are in a good state of preservation. It rains in this country but seldom.

We passed through Tuscon and a few miles below, the Santa Cruz sinks or dries up. Then we struck the desert, 70 miles to the Rio Gila above the Pima village. When we got to the river and found no grass we thought of what Lerouse had told us at Santa Fe. We saw that it would be impossible to keep the train together, so we divided up every man for himself. I believed that by traveling slow and giving my cattle time to grass on the willow and cottonwood brush and the river bares that I could take them through.

We camped the next night below the Pimas where there was a number of springs that irrigated a large tract of bottom land, but this was eaten off as close as the stock of the Indians could crop it, and it left nothing for our cattle. Next morning we had nine head of our steers mired in the lagoons, at the foot of the bluff. The next drive was across the great bend of the Gila 40 miles of loose sand and giant cactus. Some of us thought the cattle would never make it, so Warren, Wood, Shafer, Stone, Matson, and Gobin packed with one pony and one mule, all well mounted on mules and horses, leaving me with nine yoke of cattle, one large wagon, two boys, and one old man, a doctor, and one woman and two children to get through as best I could. I had one of the best mares that ever went to California.

Two days and one night we got through the 40 mile desert, where we struck the river. We found seven wagons abandoned. Some had been burnt. There were some four wagons together and I concluded to build a boat out of the wagon beds that were abandoned and freight part of our load and thus relieve our teams. I hunted the bottom over and the largest tree that we could find would make a gunwale, 23 feet 9 inches long and 18 inches deep. We sent the wagons on to find grass and a detail of four of W. S. Stone, Anderson, and myself was left to build the boat. First thing was to tear up the wagon beds and put the boards in the river to soak and drive straight all the nails that we could. I hewed the gunnels, we lined and split the log by boring one hundred half through, turning and boring not so many. I hewed head blocks and streamers and did not have enough planks from wagon beds. I had to hew four from cottonwood pieces. We caulked our boat with tar and bags left for that purpose. When the wagons left the first day we turned our boat and started. In less than three miles we came to an old beaver dam that was a perfect hedge of willows clear across the river, but we found a gap in it just wide enough for our boat to pass through. There was about a four- or five-foot fall but we had to get through. We run her through without accident except shipping some water. Overtook the wagons. They had found some grass on the north side of the river, also a hot spring.

We put about 5,500 pounds of freight on the boat, principally bacon. Then left my small wagon and threw away everything but provisions and clothing. Left tools, one heavy rifle disassembled, and traveled nights. Laid by and let cattle b r o u s e on the cottonwood and willow brush. In the daytime it was very hot. When we got to the Colorado there was the old Flag that I had followed in Mexico, flying on the bluff and a rope stretched across. At the mouth of the Gila, they wanted $2.50 to ferry in their boat, which had been built and brought down the Gila by the emigrants, same as ours, but they agreed to let us have the use of the rope if we would use it in the night and ferry with our boat.

There were ten wagons in our train at this time. We began as soon as it was dark and the first wagon was loaded. Stone stepped on a plank and the rope of the boat was fastened on with wooden pins and shoved it off. He reached over the side and pulled back, but the water poured in. We could not get the wagon back so it was cross or sink. Patrick and I pulled on that rope hand over hand for the other bank where there were four or five men to take the loads and wagons up the bank. We got the wagons out just as the boat filled.

The boat that the soldiers claimed was tied above. Stone and I said nothing, untied her and dropped down to the rope and in three hours had the nine wagons’ across and loaded. We found a large camp of Umo Indians camped and they had raised some beans and pumpkins, but their main dependence was meskyet beans. They would not trade me beans, but I traded tobacco for as many pumpkins as we could haul. We left the Colorado river miles below, late in the evening. Traveled all night.

Next day about noon we were out in loose sand and one of my steers dropped dead. Patrick’s team began to fail. He proposed to unyoke the teams and leave the wagon and drive on, water, and rest the cattle at Awnuva, supposed to be sixteen or eighteen miles on, and drive back to the wagons. I told him I would not leave a woman and children with three days rations of water. Stone, with their two wagons stayed with him. Lawson and I drove through the heat and sand about five miles. Sand getting lighter. Once we found some mesquite trees large enough to shade our teams and just at sundown Patrick and Stone drove by afoot with their rations, guns, and blankets. As soon as they passed we hitched up. The road soon got hard and as it cooled our cattle traveled as they had not for many days, as it was the first hard road we had been on for months.

About midnight they could smell the water. Two of them fell. We unyoked them and left. Before day we got to the New River and at daylight all my cattle except one were there. The New River, when we got to it, was a succession of muddy ponds, with many dead mules and oxen mired. The water was not close but we used it four days. We spent Christmas here but didn’t know it was on the first, second, or fourth day. We tried to make a Christmas turkey out of a large hawk but could not eat it. In these ponds were several dead mules and oxen but I do not recollect any stink or smell from them. The track from Colorado was well staked out with dead mules and oxen and some of the mules that lay there, with the sand heaped up over them by the wind, were as sound as when they were left by Col. Graham twelve months before. We left the New River late in the evening, traveled all night past a salt pond. Next day late in the evening we struck the Carrizo creek. Bed water had run but it was dry sand.

That water had run here and the cattle showed that they could smell it. I went to work with spade and found plenty of water at about two feet but as we had nothing to curb the sand, it was hard work to get it deep enough for the stock to drink. Watered everything.

Next camp was at Palm Spring. The sand in the bed Of this dry creek was very coarse granite and would not pack so that it was heavy pulling all the time and my cattle had nothing to eat. Began to fail, could go but a few yards without resting. I had seen where the Indians had roasted and eaten the root of the mescal, soap weed, Spanish bayonet. I grubbed up one, cut it up and got them to taste it. They ate it like corn. I fed them all that I thought they ought to have after so long a fast. That night we got out of the desert and got to Valley City. Grass was short but there was grass and water. We moved on by Warner, Tamoscela, to the Stano River. Grass getting better on to Rowlands, where we bought corn and wheat and we killed elk for meat. Some of the men would not eat stolen beef but called it elk when we brought it to camp and the men thought it was the best meat they ever tasted.

We began to gather up the scattered relies of our old train when we got to Los Angeles. There were ten wagons. Wolfscale, Lawson, Stone, Turner, White, Browning, Falkner, Harrison, Hampton, and Hudgins. Twenty-one able bodied men, 2 old men, 4 boys, and 1 woman, Mrs. Harrison. The merchants of Los Angeles wanted a road to the farther mines, Manposa. They gave $750 in flour, sugar, coffee, and all the beef that we wanted to open the road of the San Fernando Mountain and made us believe that was the only mountain between us and the Yucatan Valley. They knew we would not turn back. We made the road over the mountain just so it was passable for double teams and all the men that could get to a wagon to push.

We got over and worked up the San Francisco Canyon. We estimated 24 miles at 3 miles a day, finding a pretty lake on the east slope of the mountain and named it Elizabeth after Mrs. Harrison. We were now on the east side of the Sierra Nevada. We made two camps at the foot of the mountain. Worked alongside of a spur nearly to the summit. Camped, no grass, sent Woolfscale and two boys with the horses across that night. It took us until the middle of the afternoon to get our wagons to the summit, which was naked rock, with piles of snow and with shrubby timber on the west side. Where we went down there was snow for several hundred yards, how deep we couldn’t tell, as it bore our teams and wagons. When on top of the mountain it was clear and sun shining. Before we got to where the boys had camped it was raining and had been raining all day. In three days we worked down the canyon to the plain, the land of flowers and grass. Here we found a man by the name of French had established a cattle ranch.

We pushed on to the Kern River which was bank full. We found some dead cottonwood, and made a raft large enough to float an empty wagon. We would take the load out of a wagon, take it over and up the bank, then take the empty wagon back. Hands would be loading and reloading at the same time. We had no sign of a trail to guide us but shaped our course by -the mountains, aiming to near the middle and from the maps, the railroad has followed our trail. Of the four creeks, we bridged three of them. The last one we raised the wood base. One of these bridges was 104 feet long in 12 feet of water. The last one we split timber and laid on good sites, and the nqxt year one of our men, John Wood, went back and made a toll bridge of it and was murdered by the Indians. We forded to an island in Kings River and bridged a narrow channel to the north shore. We had a hard time between the Kings River and the Joaquin. We bogged down and had to double teams and only made seven miles the first day and five miles the next. When we got to a sandy plain just at the foot of the hills we got to Joaquin. Where it came out, there was quite a camp of miners at work. The river was booming. Snow a melting in the mountains. Provisions were only $1.50 a pound. Flour, pork, beans, tobacco, and potatoes.

They had paid $1.05 freight from Stockton. We were anxious to get to Stockton to freight and a company official offered us $750 to build them a boat 36 feet long, 9 feet wide, double balloon. One of our men had a whipsaw. We agreed to build it in 16 days. We finished it in 8 days and crossed the river in it and delivered it, but could get only part of the money, so we left one of our company to hold the boat and run it for us until they paid for it. He went in partnership with them and we never got half of the money. Went on to Manposa, where some of us went to mining. I went on to Stockton with my team, got there my first load of freight to Woods Creek at 9 cents a pound. I hauled several loads to different places then went to selling provisions at Quartz Mountain.

When the rains began I sold part of my team, laid out all my money in provisions and expected to double my money. When the Indians killed a man on the creek, the miners mostly Yankees and foreigners, dug out leaving Coulter’s Camp and mine the only place on the creek. At my camp was my youngest brother, Humphrey, and three whaler men from Maine, and one Dutchman at Coulter Camp. I heard there were 16 men farther up. All the miners had left and my grub lay all winter, and the next spring I had to haul it around and peddle it and at about half what it cost me. I worked on mining and trading until February 14, 1852. Shipped on the Steamer Ismus for Panama, paid $80 for steerage down the Chagros River. A barge from Chagros at New Orleans on the steamer Cherochee was 24 days from San Francisco to Panama; six days spent on the Ismus; two days to San Juan; four days to the Balies, mouth of the Mississippi.

I have forgotten to say that I left my uncle and wife and children at Los Angeles. I was about out of grub and as he was a doctor and was among civilization and could make a living, I thought it was best for him to stop and try to get to San Francisco by water, which he did and he got to Hangtown or Placerville and established a hospital and was doing well when I got home. Have not heard of him or family since I came home. Of all the men and boys that left this county with me in 1849, some 30 in number, only myself, brother Humphrey, cousin Warren, and Woolfscale are alive. - Mr. and Mrs. Harold R. Hudgins


Orville and Evelyn (Donovan) Jacobs

The Honorable John Wallace Donovan was born in Florence (Oneida County), New York, on August 8, 1825, the son of Michael Donovan, a native of Ireland and a soldier in the English army, who immigrated to America in 1812. He was twice married, having eight children by his first wife, Harriet Graves. They were, Dennis, James, Mary, Julia, John W., Samuel, Chance, and Kingman; and eight children were also born of his second marriage, Stephen S., Elizabeth, Michael, Joseph W., Harriet, Sarah, James, and Mary.

Michael Donovan (the father) was a man of good education, a fluent speaker and for 40 years held a license as an exhorter in the Methodist Church. He dearly loved his adopted country, was a strict temperance man and well versed in the Scriptures. His first wife, Harriet (Graves) Donovan, formerly of Massachusetts, was of Welch origin on her father’s side and on her mother’s of German ancestry. Both parents were of Revolutionary stock, her uncle, Major Wells Graves, having been with Col. Ethan Allen at the Battle of Ticonderoga. Mr. Donovan died in 1874, his first wife preceded him to the grave in 1834.

John W. Donovan, from the age of six years, obtained a good schooling and lived on a farm at home until 18 years old. In the spring of 1,837, he accompanied his parents to Toledo, Ohio, and March, 1839, to Hillsdale, Michigan, where he stayed two years, then moved to Moscow, Michigan. In his 18th year he was apprenticed to learn the shoemaker’s trade and as the eldest son in the family contributed to their support. After learning the trade he remained at home until June 24,1856, when he married Mary Jane Moreland, by whom he had six children, William W., Ella, George J., Jabin, Albert, and Ira. He resigned as Justice of the Peace in Michigan in 1868 and came to Missouri to make his home in Livingston County in Sec. 36, Twp. 59, Rg. 23. In 1876 he was a candidate for Judge of the Eastern District of Livingston County Court, was elected and served two years. In 1880 such was his popularity that when he ran for State Representative he received a handsome majority and was reelected in 1884. One bill he successfully opposed and defeated was the bill declaring barbed wire an unlawful fence. He lived in Livingston County until his death in 1913 and was buried in Wallace Cemetery.

William Wallace Donovan, the eldest son of John Wallace and Mary Jane (Moreland) Donovan, was born August 17, 1858, in Hillsdale, Michigan. He went to school first in Michigan and then at Gordonville School, in Medicine Township. He liked farming in the summer then would go into Iowa and the Dakotas operating a threshing machine when he was a young man. He married Maria Elizabeth (Lizzie) Stewart and they rented a farm nearby. He liked to raise hogs. He bought hogs from Flint, Michigan, and Delta, Ohio, trying to improve the quality of pork. He also had milk cows and sold cream. Sometimes he had to take the cream to the nearest railroad station and on occasion a produce man picked it up. They had seven children: Harry, who died in infancy; Ray; John W.; Daisy; and an infant son and daughter who were buried with their mother, who died on December 17, 1893. Mr. Donovan kept his three living children and, with the aid of his mother, made a home for them. When his father died he left a will leaving 50 acres of the homeplace to W. W. Donovan and 40 acres to Ira. They were to sell 30 acres to pay all bills, and Jabin Donovan was executor of the estate. W. W. lived on the homeplace and took care of his mother, Mary Jane, until she died in 1915.

Ira Donovan and family lived in a house just west of the old family home. They used the same well that had a windmill to pump the water. A milkhouse near by had a large trough that the water flowed through before it went on out to tanks for cattle and hogs. In this trough they placed their butter and milk in containers to keep it cool and sweet. Later a cellar was built. In a smokehouse they cured pork for summer use, by use of hickory smoke. Ira married Grace Sheetz, of Webster Grove, Iowa. Children of this union were, Lulu, George, Alma, Helen, Berneice, Timothy, and Joseph. Ira died in 1918 and his widow sold the part of the farm left her to Jake and Minnie Jacobs. On February 27, 1920, the estate was finally settled and W. W. Donovan purchased the 30 acres designated to be sold in John W. Donovan’s will made before his death in 1913. He lived on the farm renting some of it to be farmed by others, milking cows, selling cream, and raising hogs. He also was the local veterinarian and sometimes would be up all night with a fellow neighbor helping to save the life of a farm animal. His son, Ray, married Lulu Gibson of Sturges and they had two daughters, Beulah Eunice and Geneva Rosella. He died March 8, 1916.

John W. married Alice Pauline Reineman, of Chicago, in 1907. They had three daughters, Clara, Evelyn, and Lora Jane. Alice P. Donovan died in 1915. John W. lived at the home with his father at different times but after his second marriage he moved to Iowa. When W. W. Donovan could not live by himself any more he made his home with his granddaughter, Evelyn (Donovan) Jacobs, who lived near by and made a contract with Evelyn and her husband, Orville, to take care of him the rest of his life in exchange for the 38 acres he lived on. He had previously deeded 30 acres to Ray’s daughters, 15 acres to Beulah Donovan, which she sold to Daniel Coberley, and 15 acres to Geneva (Donovan) Melloul, described as S ½ E 30 acres of SE ¼ , NE ¼ , Sec. 3 Twp. 59, Rg. 23. This land is being farmed by Orville and Evelyn Jacobs, their son, Deane Jacobs, once farmed it and now their grandson, Randall Jacobs, has sowed it in wheat for 1976. The 38 acres owned by Orville and Evelyn is seeded down and is used for pasture. Two ponds have been built on it to furnish water. The buildings are gone now but there is one rose bush still there that has been there since Mary Jane (Moreland) Donovan came here with her husband John W. and family to make it her home. - Evelyn Donovan Jacobs


Leroy and Gwendolyn (Metzner) Jennings

Samuel Frederick Metzner, born August 12, 1753, married Johanna Dorthea Dalme, and had a son called Karl Hemrick Metzner, born October 7,1797. He married Wilhemina Reiche on May 8,1827, and left Germany on August 24,1847, and arrived in the United States of America at the port of New York in July of 1848. They brought with them a 16-year-old son named Carl Herman Metzner, who was born August 20,1832. He was one of 14 children, and out-lived them all.

Carl Herman Metzner was born in Saxony, Germany, and received some of his education there, and also in the United States. The family lived in Pennsylvania the first year that they were here. Then they moved to Plymouth, Wisconsin, where Herman earned his living, that of a woodchopper. He helped his father clear the land to build a home for the family.

On March 25, 1861, Herman was married to Augusta Distilhorst. Of this union four children were born, Clara, Helena, Louise, and Thelca. In 1868, Herman and Augusta and their four children traveled to Livingston County, and settled on a piece of land approximately eight miles northeast of Chillicothe, Missouri, which was later named Ingleside Farm. The family settled in an old, one-story house which then set just a few yards northeast of the present house. Herman began his work clearing the land and planning the future of his family, however one short year later his beloved wife Augusta died and left Herman with four small children to raise. Augusta was 29 years old.

June 30, 1870, Herman married Katharine Suess of Baden, Germany, then a resident of Brunswick, Missouri. Of this union nine children were born, Carl Willhelm, Karl Albert,

Karl Louis, Annabelle, Emma, Harry, Joseph, Herman, and Katharina. With Herman’s four children by his previous marriage, this made a total of 13 children for the family to care for. Some of these children died. One baby was seven months old, another eight years old, still another seven years old, and one young man, Karl Albert, died of pneumonia when he was 27 years old. The rest of the children lived their lives completely.

The will power that Herman Metzner brought with him was tested on the farm many times as, by this time, he had accumulated 525 acres to care for. Much of this was swampland which could not be farmed. However, there were lots of beautiful timber, pastures, and fields that had been cleared by hard work and determination for the planting of crops.

Sometime just before the 1900’s, having ample timber, Herman set up a sawmill on the farm and sawed the lumber for the family’s new home. The I-beams were sawed from large trees and measured 12 inches wide and 12 inches in depth and many feet long. Rocks for the foundation came from a quarry about a mile south. With the help of carpenters from Chula, and the Metzner menfolk, a very solid and sturdy home was built. When they had the large house finished he had supplied his family with one of the nicest homes in the county. The home had four large bedrooms, a parlor, dining room, living room, country kitchen, pantry, enclosed back porch, and a beautiful entry hall with a large, carved stairway. Also a room was planned for a bathroom to be installed later on. The plans for the home were complete with a large ¼ basement under the house for the family fruit and vegetables. The sawmill was also used to build two large barns and several small sheds on the farm by the men. The home was host to many elaborate parties and gatherings for many occasions. It was always a known fact, that no visitors could come without sitting down and eating a home-cooked meal at their large table, before they left. The family also used the parlor for funerals of the immediate family. Burials were a little way down the road in the Ross Cemetery.

Herman, in the early 1900’s, started building a levee around the bottom land of the farm with teams of horses. It has been said that the work on this levee took eight years to complete, and was the first of several levees to be placed on the farm. Herman Metzner was one of the few men in the county to continuously farm a bottom farm through floods and droughts in Livingston County for half a century. As a citizen, he was 100%, American, and was interested in improvements and education as well. He was director of the People’s Exchange Bank of Sturges, Missouri. In politics, he was an independent, but cast his first vote for Abe Lincoln for president.

Herman’s family by this time had begun to make plans of their own. Some were to marry, some would go to college, and some would remain at home and help their dad.

Harry Metzner, born March 4, 1885, continued his education at the University of Missouri in Columbia, Missouri, studying agriculture. He completed four years of college in three years, then returned home to the farm to help his father operate the farm, which had grown much in size and work by this time. He took an active part in community affairs, and was a board member and secretary of the Rich Hill Drainage District Committee of Livingston County, that straightened the creek. He was also a Boy Scout Leader and was given the Silver Beaver award and received a certificate signed by Calvin Coolidge, then the President of the United States. In 1934, Harry designed and installed the present roof on the farm house which has a large German Swastika enlayed on the south side of the roof in two different colors of shingles. On August 13, 1934, at Princeton, Missouri, Harry married Miss Esther Patterson, a school teacher from Avalon, Missouri. The couple were given a large reception at the family home hosting 150 guests. Born to this couple was a daughter, Gwendolyn Alice Metzner, on March 21, 1936. Harry continued to make his home at the farm until his death February 2, 1937, at the age of 52, of pneumonia.

Annabelle, a daughter, had a very tragic romance with Charles S. Hiett, a grocery store man from Pattonsburg, Missouri. The couple were engaged to be married when one cold winter evening the young gentleman left the Metzner home and traveled to Chillicothe, where he was to catch a train for home. As the young man started to board the train it started moving, so he held on to the caboose of the train since the door was locked, knowing that it would stop at Utica. However his hands gave away just a few seconds before the train slowed down at the next stop, and he fell to the ground striking his head upon a rail and was killed. Annabelle did not recover from this tragedy and never married. She had done some traveling to several states and lived her life on the farm. Annabelle was born December 16, 1875, and died November 14, 1960, at the age of 85.

Augusta, a daughter of Herman’s first wife (Augusta), was born June 29, 1871, and married Mr. Jack Jordan. Three children were born to this union, Carlos, Rudolph, and Lewis. Augusta died April 5, 1918, at the age of 47 of pneumonia.

Thelca, a daughter of Augusta, was born December 22, 1866, and married Mr. Israel T. Allbritain on April 29, 1891. The couple had three children, Hallie, Herman, and Dessie. Thelca passed away February 10, 1956, at the age of 90.

Louise, a daughter of Augusta, was born January 11, 1896, and was married to Mr. Edward Morris. To this union two children were born, Lena and Arthur. Louise passed away November 29, 1943, at the age of 81, and is buried in the Edgewood Cemetery.

The story of this family and farm which began with Carl Herman Metzner and his first wife, Augusta, and continued when he married Katharine Suess, and the children they raised, began one hundred seven years ago. Carl Herman passed away at his home January 31, 1919. He was 87 years old. His wife, Katharine, lived on another six years. She passed away September 5, 1925, also in the home that they both loved. When Emma, the last of Herman’s children, passed away in 1970, the farm passed to Herman’s granddaughter, Gwendolyn Alice Metzner, who was the daughter of Harry and Esther Metzner. Gwendolyn married Mr. Leroy Jennings of Chillicothe, Missouri, on September 20, 1953. The couple have four children, David 21, Steve 20, Debra 18, and Ronnie 15. The farmland that her grandfather homesteaded has been farmed every year by sharecroppers. This grain farm has grown much larger since improvements have been made every year.

The beautiful, old home is in the process of being remodeled for modern-day living. It is now being rented by Mr. and Mrs. Roy W. Lemon, parents of three daughters, and is the first family to live there that is not a Metzner. They share the true feelings of all who have lived in the house and left their memories. They have grown to love the rambling acres full of nature’s surprises and man’s achievements. Thanks to a great pioneer and his family for making this story possible, and also a special thanks to Mrs. Frankie Lemon for helping me compile this information for the present and future generations.

1878 Atlas 360 acres - 1960 Atlas 1162 acres.

Note: All of this information has come from family ledgers, birth records, and death notices since 1868. We have traced the Metzner family back to the year of 1662 from the town of Saxony, Germany.


J. Roy and Frankie Jones

This 40 acres of land in Blue Mound Township (the NW ¼ of the NE ¼ Sec. 8, Twp. 56, Rg. 24) was a part of the first land bought in 1868 by Thomas D. Jones when he came here from Wales. He bought other land, 80 acres (the S ½ of the NE ¼ in Sec. 8), that is now owned by Ellen and David Wendell Jones. Later in 1872 Thomas D. Jones purchased from Robert L. Patrick 40 acres of land in Blue Mound Township (the SW ¼ of the SE ¼ of Sec. 5, Twp. 56, Rg. 24). In 1883 Thomas D. Jones sold this 40 acres to his son, Thomas E. Jones, who was J. Roy Jones’ uncle. In 1935 J. Roy Jones bought this land from his uncle.

Thomas D. Jones was born in Carmarthanshire, South Wales, in 1817, and came here in 1868. The oldest son, Dave, and the third son, Thomas E., came with him. They built a tworoom house and dug a well on the 80 acres now owned by Ellen and David Wendell Jones. Later that year the wife, Esther (Evans) Jones, born 1826 in Wales, came across the water with the other children, three girls and two boys, the youngest, Esther Amy, being six years old. She passed away three weeks after coming to America. She was buried in Elliott Cemetery east of Dawn, Mo.

One of the boys who came with the mother was John E. Jones, born August 5, 1853. He married Hannah Jones and went to Omaha, Nebraska, where a daughter, Esther,(Etta) Jones Berkshire, was born. Later they moved near the town of Nettleton, Mo. A son, Edgar, was born there. Later on they all moved to Kansas City, where all except Etta passed away. She came back to Chillicothe and spent her last few years at the Lambert Hotel. She is buried at Forest Hill Cemetery, Kansas City, Mo., beside her parents.

The two girls who came with the mother were Margaret Jones Williams, born September 24, 1851. She married Thomas Williams and lived a mile west of Plymouth, Mo. In 1885 they moved to the State of Louisiana, where they passed away. Their grandchildren are still there.

The other daughter, Mary Ann, born 1856, married William Thomas and lived on this 120 acres in Sec. 8, Twp. 56, Rg. 24 (now owned by J. Roy Jones). Mary Ann and husband purchased the land from her father, Thomas D. Jones, in 1876. They passed away and are buried at Elliott Cemetery where her baby sister, mother, and father are laid to rest.

Thomas E. Jones and wife, Ida Patrick Jones, lived on a farm near his father’s. They are buried at the Christison Cemetery. Their living children are: Mrs. Esther Chapman. Mr. Sam Jones RR, and Harvey Jones of Chillicothe, Mo. Dave Jones and wife, Ellen (Francis) Jones, moved to the State of Iowa and raised a family of four boys and one girl. All are deceased. Thomas D. Jones and wife, Esther (Evans) Jones, were members of the Welsh Baptist Church, which was located about a mile and one-half due south of where they settled. The church was built in 1876 and occupied the first time on June 1, 1876.

The younger son, Benjamin J. Jones and wife, Amanda E. (Johnson) Jones, also attended this church with their family of seven children, Lewis T. Jones, Annie Jones Perry, Fred D. Jones, Cora Jones, Charles B. Jones, Albert Jones, and J. Roy Jones.

Cora and Albert passed away in young adulthood. Lewis T. passed away in 1958, Charles B. in 1967, Annie Perry in 1975, Benjamin J. and wife both passed away in 1933 and are buried in the Welsh Cemetery southeast of Dawn, Mo. Fred D. Jones and J. Roy Jones still survive. J. Roy Jones and some of the children of Charles B. Jones still attend the "Welsh" church, which is now the Dawn Baptist Church.

The posterity of this Thomas D. Jones family are scattered over all parts of North America, Hawaii and Indonesia. - Frankie Jones


L. M. and Mildred Johnson

The L. M. and Mildred Johnson farm, located three miles south and 1½ miles west of Dawn, was purchased in 1868 by Isaac Johnson from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad Company. Upon his death the farm Was inherited by his son, Henry A. Johnson, who in turn, deeded the farm to his son, Hallie R. Johnson. In 1960 the present owner, L. M. Johnson, purchased the farm from his father, Hallie R. Johnson. The farm is located in Sec. 25, Twp. 56, Rg. 25, Livingston County, Mo.

Isaac Johnson came from Kentucky. An early trail came through the farm. A log cabin served as a stopping place for the stagecoach. Also, for religious services and as a subscription school. Later a public school known as the Johnson school was built on the farm. In 1891 church services were held there. Mr. Johnson gave the ground and a church was built, 24 feet by 36 feet, at a cost of $595.00. It was dedicated in 1898 as the Bethany Baptist Church. It served the community until 1952 when it was sold and torn down. There was also an early cemetery on the farm known as the Gudgell Cemetery. Isaac Johnson (1821-1899) and his wife Polly (1836-1920) were buried in the Collar Cemetery.


Mr. and Mrs. David Wendell Jones

This farm is in Sec. 8-56-24, about a mile northeast of Dawn. It was purchased by Thomas D. Jones, my great-grandfather in June, 1868. In 1900 it belonged to Ben J. Jones, my grandfather; in 1912 to Charles B. Jones, my father. In 1965 and 1971 it was deeded to Mr. and Mrs. David Wendell Jones. The old house was destroyed by fire in 1971. We replaced it with a brick home.

Garreg Goch in South Wales was the name of the family farm. There was an Upper, Lower, and Middle Garreg Goch. It was all owned by Lord Carter, who lived in a place near by. He owned about 500 acres of land. The palace was surrounded by a park and had deer in it. The great-grandfather’s farm consisted of 120 acres. It was rough ground with a river, but it never overflowed. They caught trout and eel in the river. They lived near the town of Carmarthenshire, South Wales.

The Lord had a schoolhouse where the children attended school. Uncle Tom walked three miles through the fields. The teacher was English and all lessons were taught in English. They weren’t allowed to speak Welsh, even on the school grounds. Punishment was a spanking. Books were furnished, and they paid one penny a week per child.

The Church of England was near their home and since all weddings had to be in it they would get to see them sometimes. Their house was a big stone one with a straw roof. Some of the roofs were made of slate. It was heated by two large fireplaces, one on each end. The parents and small children slept in the living room. They had folding beds. Grandmother cooked on a fireplace in the kitchen. The older sister and hired girl slept in the kitchen. There were two rooms upstairs. They kept milk and made cheese and butter in the shed on the back of the house.

The cow barn joined the house on the east. They had 13 cows, which in the winter were tied to posts (I think each one had a separate post). They were kept in a small lot covered with red stone in the summer. Garreg Goch means red rock, the kind the lot was covered with.

Thomas D. was the only child; his wife’s name was Esther Evans. She had a brother, Tom. He was probably the one who took them to Swansea where they took the train to Liverpool. They got on the boat which was about one-fourth mile long. It carried 1300 people to America. They were sixteen days coming over to New York from Liverpool. The boat had cabins in the lower part on each side, and tables in between where they were served food.

When they reached New York they unloaded at Castle Garden. They could buy transportation to any place in the U. S, A. They were taken in a boat up the Hudson River to Toledo, Ohio, and crossed the Niagara Falls. Then they took a boat to Chicago, came to Quincy, and then rode the train to Utica. That train went only as far as St. Joseph. No one knew where Dawn was when they got off the train. They pronounced Dawn with an O instead of an A. Finally an old colored man with a hoe on his shoulder told them. They went through Dawn without knowing it, as there was only one house there.

Charles B. Jones, owner of the farm from 1912 to 1965, and the son of Ben J. Jones, was born in Livingston County northeast of this farm. He spent his entire lifetime in Livingston County in Blue Mound Township. He was a farmer and active in the community and Cambrian Baptist Church. He was married to Ethel Perryman in 1915. They have three children living: Ada, Unionville, Mo.; Paul, Dawn, Mo.; and Ellen, at Dawn on the family farm. Charles B. passed away in 1967 and his wife in 1969. They are buried in Edgewood Cemetery, Chillicothe, Mo.


Lawrence G. Jones

Part of my present f arm was bought from John H. West by John H. Davis, November, 1866. It was sold to John J. Davis in 1867. These people came from Wales to Ohio. They had planned to go on to what is now Emporia, Kansas. It was called Arvonia at that time. Land here in the Dawn area was selling for $4.00 to $25.00 per acre. Land in Kansas was cheaper, but the prairie had not been broken. It was estimated to cost $10.00 per acre for breaking, and a crop could not be expected for two years. The family decided to stay at Dawn even though land was higher and it was free of Indians.

The Davises came to Utica, Missouri, by train. The men walked to Dawn leaving their family staying in Utica in the old brick hotel. John H. Davis bought part of our farm (E ½ of SE¼ of Sec. 20, Twp. 56, Rg. 24) from John and Irene West, November 27, 1866, for $840.00. At the death of John West it was given to his daughter, Hannah, April 6, 1891. She married William Jones. Mrs. Jones passed away leaving it to her daughter, Lizzy (Mrs. Gomer Jones).

John H. Davis also owned another part in Section 29 which was bought from John H. West in 1866. He sold it to William R. Jones who deeded part of it to his son, Gomer G. Jones, on April 10, 1899. Gomer Jones bought the remainder from heirs. William R. Jones came from Wales in September, 1868. He was held in quarantine in New York for 21 days before he could continue his journey to Missouri. Gomer G. Jones and Lizzie Jones married and built a house about 1900 on this latter tract of land. They were parents of two children, Mary Jones (Watson) and Lawrence G. Jones. On February 7, 1958, the land was deeded to Mary Watson and Lawrence G. Jones, at which time Lawrence Jones purchased Mrs. Watson’s share. A new house was completed in December 1968.

- Lawrence G. Jones


Victor and Karlene Jones

On August 7, 1871, John T. Griffith bought 40 acres of land situated in the SW ¼ of the SE ¼, Sec. 21, Twp. 56, Rg. 24 from Hugh Jones and Lizzie Jones, his wife. John T. Griffith did not live on this land. He was a carpenter and worked in Chicago at the time of the Great Fire on October 8, 1871. He later made his home with his wife, Margaret, in Columbus, Ohio. He sold this 40 acres to his cousin, William R. Jones, on September 21, 1888.

William R. Jones was born in Merrionthshire, North Wales, October 8,1835. He came to America July 4, 1856. He married Elizabeth Griffith April 13, 1860, and they lived on a farm in Ohio. They moved to Missouri in 1868. They had 7 children; Charlotte E., who married John M. Evans; Robert William, who married Anna James; Catherine W., who married William Morgan; Henry T., who married Eliza Evans; Gomer G., who married Elizabeth Jones; Martha H., who married Thomas L. Williams; and Anna E., who married Hawley S. Johnson. William R. sold the tract of land to his son, Robert W. Jones, November 5, 1897.

Robert W. Jones married Anna James and they had 4 children: William Robert who died at the age of 18; Morgan J.; Martha E.; and McKinley. Robert W. sold the tract to his son, McKinley, February 24,1925. McKinley married Hazel Timbrook and they had 3 children: Victor Lee, Mary Elizabeth, and Kenneth Eugene. McKinley was burning trash and accidentally caught himself afire on March 15, 1965. He died that afternoon. His wife, Hazel, continued to live on the farm with her son, Victor, until 1974, She went to live with her daughter, Mary E. Nigus, of Hale. She sold the tract to her son, Victor Lee Jones, on January 10, 1975.

Victor married Karlene (Hamilton) Neal on August 29, 1974. He has one child, Victoria Kay Jones, born November 16, 1975, and three step-children, Cynthia L, Neal, Joni Sue Neal, and John Clinton Neal Ill. - Victor Jones


Charles and Rosemary (Boucher) Larsen

John Boucher purchased this farm in 1859 from the United States Government for $1.25 per acre. He was a son of Elisha and Sarah Boucher, who moved from Tennessee to Ray County, Missouri, in 1827. In 1834 they came to Livingston County. Two brothers, James and Joshua, lost their lives in the Mexican War in 1846 and 1847. In 1848 Thomas and Elisha took up land in Livingston County. Andrew J. Boucher, who later owned the farm, was a Lieutenant in the Civil War.

John, Sarah, A. J., Elizabeth, Agnes, Thomas, and Elisha are listed as organizers and members of the Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church, which was organized in 1853, J. A. Boucher of a later generation was a teacher and County Superintendent of Schools. The farm was owned by A. J. Boucher in 1870, Amanda Boucher in 1932, Paul Boucher in 1938, and in 1969 it was deeded to Charles and Rosemary (Boucher) Larsen.


Melvin L. Littrell

The SW ¼ of the NE ¼ of Sec. 9, Twp. 57, Rg. 22, was entered from the government on November 22, 1855, by Joseph J. Littrell. At his death in 1898, it went to John E. Littrell; at his death in 1953, it went to Buel E. Littrell, who deeded it to his son, Melvin Littrell, in 1962, who owns it to the present time (1976).

The NW ¼ of the NE ¼ of Sec. 9-57-22 was entered from the government September 18, 1855, by John Warren, a brother-in-law of Joseph J. Littrell. Mr. John Warren owned this land until his death; and then his son, Tom Warren, and his heirs owned it until the fall of 1942. They sold it for $25.00 per acre to Buel E. Littrell, who deeded it to his son, Melvin, in 1962.

The E½ of the NW¼ of Sec. 9-57-22 was bought in 1890 by John E. Littrell, who borrowed the money from his Grandfather Alexander at the rate of 10%. At his death in March, 1953, the land went to Buel Littrell and was deeded to Melvin Littrell in 1962. During the 86 years the John E. Littrells and Buel Littrells have been the only residents in the home.

The NW ¼ of the SW ¼ of Sec. 9-57-22 was bought by John E. Littrell in 1915 from Les Seely whose family had owned it at least 50 years. Purchase price was $115.00 per acre. At his death in 1953, it went to Buel Littrell who deeded it to Gerald Littrell in 1962, and who still owns it (1976).

The E ½ of the SW ¼ and SW ¼ of the SW ¼ of Sec. 9-57-22 was bought from the J. H. McKamey Estate by Buel Littrell in 1943 at $55.00 per acre. In 1962 it was deeded by Buel to Gerald Littrell. Those previously owing this land were: William Scruby, Sr. (father of Will, Frank, Hod, and Mrs. Frank Bassett, and grandfather of Stanley and Horace Scruby), who gave a portion of it for the South Wheeling School (better known as Gould School); and Jim Hill, father of Frank and John Hill.

This land had the first title recorded in Livingston County: NW ¼ of the SE ¼ of Sec. 4-57-22 was entered from the government in April,1839, by James J. Littrell as was the NE ¼ of the SE ¼ of Sec. 4-57-22. Both tracts of land were bought by John E. Littrell from John Wright in1933 at a price of $70.00 per acre. John E. Littrell held this land until his death in 1953. His son, Earnest A. Littrell, inherited it and sold it in 1971 at $427.00 per acre, to his brother, Buel, who still owns it (1976).

All the above land was prairie land.

James J. Littrell was born February 1, 1803. His wife, Melvina, was born June 21, 1811, in Kentucky. They are buried in Ogan Cemetery. Joseph Jackson Littrell was born December 4, 1831, and was married to Mary Barbee in 1851. They are buried in Wheeling Cemetery. His second wife, Mary Alexander, whom he married in December, 1859, was born in Bedford. John E. Littrell was born November 17, 1864. He was married October 9, 1892, to Eva Harris who was born in Bedford. They are buried in Wheeling Cemetery. Buel E. Littrell was born May 11, 1898. On November 26, 1922, he married Edna Colton who was born in Illinois. Melvin H. Littrell was born June 19, 1932. On February 12, 1956, he married Meredith Long who was born in Chillicothe, Mo.

James J. Littrell and Melvina came to Missouri and entered land in Sections 3 and 4, Twp. 575 Rg. 22, April 18, 1839. Their children were: Joseph J. Littrell, born December 4, 1831; Sarah, born June 30, 1835, who married John Warren; William James, born April 4, 1838, married Emma Gish; Mary Jane, who married Ben F. Dillon, December 24, 1855; Nancy, who married James Gish, December 24, 1866.

James and Melvina Littrell built a home in Section 3 in 1836. Some 20 years later the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad (CB&Q) went through about 200 yards to the north of their house. They had slaves in their early life, and as their children were married, they gave their daughters girl slaves and their sons boy slaves. He gave his son, Joseph J., a boy slave. During the Civil War the slave boarded a train between what is now Meadville and Wheeling and went south to join the Union Army. He ate too many green peaches and died. Joseph J., before the war, was offered $1200 in gold for this slave, but refused, even though he knew the slave would be freed. This writer (Buel Littrell) remembers as a boy old Aunt Mary Littrell and two of her sons who were slaves of the Littrells.


Gladys C. Lucas

This farm of 82.80 acres came into the John Grouse family on December 12, 1860, and has been owned by someone in the family since that time. It lies in Sec. 12, Twp. 58, Rg. 25 of Sampsel Township in Livingston County. This land was at one time owned by Ben Hargrave, a maternal great-grandfather of the present owner, Mrs. Gladys Lucas. It was at this time in 1859 that one acre in the northwest corner was deeded to the Mt. Pleasant Baptist Church, on which the church was built. It is still a very active church.

Mr. and Mrs. John Grouse were born and raised in Germany. They came to America and first settled in Zanesville, Ohio, in 1852. After a few years, they migrated to Missouri and settled down in Sampsel Township.

Mr. and Mrs. Grouse bad 11 children: Christina, who married Chris Seitter; Mary married John Mast; John married Mollie Hopper; Goodlow married Mary Girdner; George H. and William who married sisters, Margaret and Kate Hargarve; Rosana to Dave Schultz; Kate to Sam Tiberghien; Elizabeth to Jim Cusick. Charlie died at the age of 18 of measles. Another baby who also had the name, George, died in infancy in Ohio. They then named the first baby born in Missouri George H. Several of the descendants of these children are still living in this area.

Barbara Grouse was a strong, sturdy, and industrious woman. The story is told of how she used to carry three crocks of milk down the hill to the springhouse along the creek’s edge. She carried a crock in each hand and one on her head and was never known to spill a drop. The springhouse was built over the spring itself, and it was rocked so that several crocks could be set in a rectangular pit about eight inches deep. The spring water then flowed around the crocks only to a certain depth, going out an overflow at the lower end.

Mr. Grouse had been taught milling and farming in his native country. At one time he owned 210 acres, but when the farm came to Will Grouse, there were only approximately 80 acres. The writer does not know the history of the rest of it. Mr. Grouse passed away in 1894, leaving the farm to his wife, Barbara, until her death; then it was to be the property of her youngest son, William Grouse, upon his paying a certain sum to each of his brothers and sisters. Thus, the farm came to Will Grouse in 1907 at the death of his mother.

Just before the farm came to William Grouse, he married Kate Hargrave in May, 1905. Kate was a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John C. Hargrave. John C. Hargrave lost a part of his arm while serving in the Civil War. In April of 1908 a daughter was born to Will and Kate Grouse, and was to be their only child, Gladys Catherine, who is the owner in 1976.

Mr. and Mrs. Grouse, or Aunt Kate and Uncle Will, as they became known to many, were industrious, hard-working people. Uncle Will farmed land on the river bottoms. He could be seen early and late with several horses tied behind his wagon going to, or coming home from his work. They helped many young folks get a start in life, Aunt Kate always had a big garden. When the elements disturbed others’ gardens, Aunt Kate always seemed to come up with the same amount year after year. When asked if her success meant that she planted them in the right sign, she would invariably answer, "No, I planted it in the ground and used a lot of ‘elbow grease’ on it." She raised geese from whose feathers she made many pillows and feather beds - often giving a pair of pillows to a niece or nephew who was just starting out in married life. She baked big loaves of bread that would melt in your mouth. She made big kettles of soap in the early years using lye she had made from wood ashes. In her later years her grandson, Wesley Eugene Lucas, made his home with them.

Aunt Kate and Uncle Will always made sorghum in the fall. This came to be quite an occasion, as people would come from miles around, some bringing their lunch to watch the making of the sorghum and to "lick the paddle." Their sorghum was known far and wide, but there was never enough to supply the demand because Aunt Kate and Uncle Will had many other things to do.

Gladys Catherine, their only child, attended school at the Raulie, Springhill, Brown, Gibbs, and Potter schools. The reason for her attending so many was because the school teacher boarded in the Grouse home. After teaching the regular six months, she would go to another school and teach the three spring months, and Gladys went too. This teacher, Mrs. Kate Donoho, is still living and enjoying life in 1976. Gladys eventually entered high school; then college, and in 1929 was graduated with an Associate in Arts degree and a Bachelor of Science degree in education. In the fall of the same year she went to Colorado, where she became a teacher. During that same year she met and married Wesley Lucas, son of Jerome and Nettie Lucas. In the course of time two boys were born to this union Duane Grouse in 1930 and Wesley Eugene in 1931. The Lucas family soon moved back to Missouri, where for several years, Mr. Lucas helped his father-in-law farm. Mrs. Lucas again began to teach school. She taught many years in the rural areas, then taught for a short time in the Chillicothe school system. She was prevailed upon to teach at the State Training School for Girls, a job which she thoroughly enjoyed for 14 years.

"Mrs. Gladys," as she was affectionately called by her rural pupils, was a "jack-of-all-trades." Besides her teaching she helped her father in the fields, often driving four to six horses. In later years she drove the tractor, built fence, and helped out in the many ways of a farm. She built a large hay barn, and later built several other buildings. She also enjoyed birds and animals, and cared for several hives of bees.

In September, 1946, Mrs. Kate Grouse passed away, and two years later in April, 1948, Mr. Grouse passed away too. It was at this time that Mrs. Lucas’ older son, Duane, entered the Marines and lost his life September 24,1950, in Seoul, Korea. Duane received many medals and received the Purple Heart posthumously. This was a terrible blow to Mr. and Mrs. Lucas and to his brother, Eugene. After Mr. Grouse’s death, Eugene moved onto the farm where he and his son, Kevin, make their home and farm the land. Gladys Lucas, mother and grandmother lives close by on 110 acres cornering the Grouse land. Mr. and Mrs. Lucas have lived there since 1938. However, Mr. Lucas passed away in 1968 after suffering a stroke in 1965.

Mrs. Lucas has a small herd of Hereford cows, which she enjoys. She also raises a big garden and always shares the fruits of it with neighbors and friends. Mr. and Mrs. Lucas, Duane, and Eugene were members of the Springhill Methodist Church, and attended regularly until the church was closed in 1966.

The Grouse homestead is much the same. The farm buildings have long since fallen down and new sheds built. The first house burned in 1889, and the frame, two-story house that was built to replace it, is still there. Eugene and son, Kevin, still live on the old farm. And so it is that in 1976, they live on land that was first granted to Eugene’s great, great, great-grandfather, Mr. John Hargarve by President James K. Polk, December 1, 1848.

The reader will note that the farm first came to one side of the family; then in the course of about twelve years it passed to John Grouse, the other side of the family. So the land has been in continuous ownership for one hundred sixteen years. With the exception of seven years from 1853 to 1860, the farm has been in one side of the family, or the other, and most of the time, a combination of both, for one hundred twenty-eight years.

The members of this family who have passed away are buried in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery. - Gladys C. Lucas


Keith and Alice Lutes

William Stirling was born at Glasgow, Scotland, June 10, 1834. When a young boy, he moved with his parents, George and Isabella (Kirkland) Stirling to Pennsylvania. On April 2, 1863, he married Adaline Can in They were the parents of ten children: Rebecca (Stirling) Twombly, George, Isabel (Stirling) Brown, James, John, William Matthew, Charles E., Ida (Stirling) Wheeler, Bertha (Stirling) Seek, and one child who died in infancy.

On October 14, 1856, in Pittsburgh, Pa., William Stirling became a citizen of the United States of America.

William Stirling bought this tract of land on February 20, 1866. William and Adaline Stirling were members of the Methodist Church in Bedford. Adaline died October 29,1923, and William died April 2,1925. They are buried in the Avalon Cemetery. William and Adaline Stirling were the grandparents of the present owners.

Charles E. Stirling was born in Livingston County, Mo., June 17, 1878. On December 29,1931, he was united in marriage to Ida Bailey at Chillicothe, Mo. To this union were born three children, William E., Alice (Stirling) Lutes, and Geneva (Stirling) Connell. Charles E. and Ida were members of the Bedford Methodist Church.

On May 7, 1919, Charles E. bought this land from his parents, William and Adeline Stirling. Charles.E. took pride in raising draft horses and mules. In 1930 he began raising registered Shorthorn cattle and continued this until 1954. Charles E. and his children attended the Fairland Grade School which was located at the southeast corner of the farm. This school was discontinued in the spring of 1946. Charles E. Stirling passed away February 3,1967, and is buried in the Avalon Cemetery. Ida Stirling lives in Hale, Mo., at this time (1976). Charles E. and Ida are the parents of the present owners.

On July 9, 1962, Charles E. and Ida sold the farm to their daughter and son-in-law, Alice and Keith Lutes, who are the present owners of the land. They lived on the farm from 1962 until 1974. The present house was built in approximately 1885 and was remodeled in 1960. William Stirling hewed the sidewalks out of sandstone quarried on the farm soon after the house was built. He moved them in with a team of horses. The sidewalks are still intact. A cellar located near the house was also built about this time out of sandstone and is still intact.

This farm is located two miles southwest of Bedford, is all hill land, and is used for grain and livestock farming. Approximately one-sixth of the land is still in timber. There was a molasses mill operated on this farm for approximately 50 years. it was moved to William Matthew Stirling’s farm in 1944. - Alice Lutes


Mr. and Mrs. Claude Mathews

Our farm is located one mile east and one-half mile north of Avalon. In 1865 Samuel A. Gray bought 200 acres from the railroad.

He was a soldier in the Civil War for three years before he came home to Pittsburgh, Pa. on February 23, 1865, he and Margaret Montgomery (my good grandmother) were married, and left to the prairies of northwest Missouri on their bridal trip to buy land and make a home. They came by steamboat from Pittsburgh to Hannibal, then on to Chillicothe by railroad. All they brought with them was a trunk. Grandmother’s father gave her $1000.00 which she sewed in her dress belt for fear it might be stolen. They had some friends from Pennsylvania who had already settled north of this present place, where they stayed until getting settled.

There was a two-room log cabin which was their first home. The land was mostly timber before any farming could be done. Down over the hill was a spring from which they carried drinking water.

Grandfather Gray went by horseback to Chillicothe on errands to get mail, food, supplies, and to the grist mill in Utica for flour. He -had to cross the river by swimming his horse. The bushwhackers still went around, and he was in danger for he was from the northern army. Here ten children were born: two pairs of twin girls who died in infancy; two others who died in childhood; and four who grew to maturity. They were Robert, Luella, William, and Harry Gray.

After clearing the timber, they planted hedge rows for fence. One hedge row stood for years as a landmark between Grand River and Fairview Townships. It was taken down last year and a new line fence put UP. In 1869 my grandfather helped build the Presbyterian Church, and later he was a member and deacon. In 1884 Grandfather Gray built a -new two-story home down near the public road which had been put in. Grandmother’s father from Pennsylvania came out and helped them. They also built a hen house and two barns across the road.

On February 23, 1915, Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Gray celebrated their Golden Wedding Annfversary. Three of their children were present, Mrs. Luella Canning, William, and Harry Gray along with his wife and daughter. Marguerite at that time was the only grandchild. On September 5, 1919, Samuel A. Gray passed away. On September 9, 1924, a son was born to Harry and Zoa Gray. He was named Harold Beever Gray. This made the second grandchild.

Luella was living with Grandmother Gray, and she continued to care for her until she passed away on June 27,1934. All are buried in Avalon Cemetery. On August 24, 1932, Marguerite Gray and Claude Mathews were married at Chillicothe, Mo. After my grandmother’s death, my aunt wasn’t in very good health, so my folks, Harry and Zoa Gray, moved over to the home place and cared for her until she passed away on February 23, 1941.

On June 5,1957, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Gray celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary in the same home that his folks did 42 years before. Mr. Harry Gray passed away May 13, 1967. Mrs. Harry Gray passed away May 17, 1968.

As there were only two children, Marguerite and Harold, we divided the 200 acres. Marguerite took the west 100 acres and Harold the east 60 and 40 where the old house still stands. Harold fenced the 40 acres and had cattle and hogs there. We built a new home with a barn and other buildings in 1973. Now we have public water from District No. 3, an underground cable for telephone service, and FEC for electric service.

We have a family of five children: Ella Louise Mathews Brown, born August 9, 1934; Claude Duane Mathews, born February 24,1940; Larry and Gary Mathews (twins), born August 7,1941; and Donald Gray Mathews, born May 28, 1947. We also have 20 grandchildren. - Marguerite Mathews

Taken from the Chillicothe Tribune, dated February 23, 1915.

Samuel A. and Margaret Gray celebrated their Golden Wedding Anniversary. They came to Livingston County soon after their marriage in Pennsylvania and have been honored and respected residents of near Avalon ever since.

In the history of the Presbyterian Church of Avalon, there have been three Golden Weddings: David Linton and Jennie Linton, Samuel Fullerton and Jane Fullerton, and Mr. and Mrs. Gray.

Mr. and Mrs. Gray are not grey except the former who is just a little bit. Good Mrs. Gray still has the rich, jet blackhair when she was a bride half a century ago. They were pioneers when they came to Missouri in the spring of 1865. The bushwhackers were still in evidence and more than one night did Mrs. Gray anxiously await for Samuel’s return when he had gone to Chillicothe on an errand, or to the grist mill at Utica.

Many readers of the Tribune will read with pleasure of this happy social event in one of Livingston County’s most hospitable homes. -Jessie Esterbrook


Herbert E., Eugene W. Mansfield, and Mary E. Cox

Andrew Ewen, the father of Mary Jane Ewen Mansfield, purchased the 40 acres of land February 28, 1870, which is described as follows all of the fourth of the west half of the southeast quarter of section number eighteen, also the South one-third of the west three-fourths of the west half of the southeast fourth of section eighteen in township number fifty-eight of range number twenty-five, containing forty acres more or less. Consideration-$400.00.

Probate records show that Andrew Ewen died intestate that April 19, 1875. William Ewen was appointed administrator of the estate and there were four heirs, one of whom was Mary Jane Mansfield, wife of Reuben Mansfield, Sr. Reuben Mansfield and Mary Jane, his wife, became the sole owners of the property October 13, 1875. This property has been owned continuously since and is now the property of the heirs of the Saphronia Mansfield Estate. Eugene W. Mansfield is the agent.

Reuben Mansfield added to this land and at the time of his death in 1908 was the owner of 490 acres of land which was all in Livingston County, Sampsel Township. John Mansfield, Keith and Reuben’s father, came to Livingston County from Indiana in 1839. John was a miller by profession. He was killed and buried at Taos, New Mexico, while serving as a lieutenant of the army during the Mexican War. He was shot by an Indian arrow and was fatally wounded.

John Mansfield’s wife, Mrs. Susan McCoskie, whose maiden name was Rockhold, came to Missouri from White County, Tennessee, in 1823. Mr. McCoskie died and she afterwards became the wife of Mr. John Mansfield. They were the parents of two children, Reuben and Sacelds A., who died in 1855.

Reuben Mansfietd, Sr., and Mary J. Mansfield owned the farm until their deaths. Then Oliver Mansfield and family owned and lived on the land. Later Reuben Mansfield, Jr., was the owner and then Julian Mansfield and Saphronia Bills Mansfield owned and occupied the land until 1969. As before stated, the property now belongs to the heirs of Saphronia E. Mansfield. None of the Mansfield family have resided on the property since 1969.

Julian Mansfield died in April, 1962, at the age of 82. Mrs. Saphionia Mansfield died in March, 1971, at 90 years of age. - Eugene W. Mansfield


Ora C. and Grace Morris

J. E. Morris (1850-1937), a son of John and Mary Morris, assisted his father in farming and livestock raising. He made two trips across the plains with wagon trains. He married Mary Knaus (1851-1912). They were the parents of Clark Morris.

They lived on a farm that was originally part of his father’s estate. It is now occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Ora C. Morris. He married Grace Karst. They are the parents of two children, Ora Morris, Jr., and Mrs. Nancy Fries.

J. E. Morris and his wife are buried in the Anderson-Smith Cemetery. - Ora C. Morris


Ora C. and Dorothy Morris

James May (1826-1896) was born in Callaway County, Mo. He was a son of Gabriel May of Kentucky and Elizabeth (Craighead) May of Virginia. They were early settlers in Livingston County, coming to Cream Ridge Township in 1840 or 1841.

James and his wife, Nancy (1821-1922), settled on this place in 1848. One of the first schools was on the northwest part of this farm. The May Cemetery, a large, well-kept cemetery, is on the southeast part of the farm. This is about 2½ miles southwest of Chula.

A son, William R. May (1851-1931), was one of the first thresher men. He operated a horse powered, hand fed machine. He later owned one of the first steam engines in the county. It was purchased about 1904. Clark Morris later went into the threshing and sawmill business with him. The farm is now owned by Ora and his sister, Dorothy Morris. - Ora C. Morris


Ora C., Dorothy, and Mabel Morris

John Morris was born in England in 1829. He came to America at an early age. His father, Edward Morris, was a cattle buyer in Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana, He drove the cattle to New York and Philadelphia. lie later settled in Ohio. John married Mary Rowe of New York in 1849. They came to Livingston County in 1862. Their land was about four miles north of Chillicothe. The first house he built was destroyed by fire in 1867. A year later he built the fine brick house which now stands unoccupied. It was built by John Meek with bricks from Utica. The stone foundation came from the Rocky Ford area on Grand River. The woodwork was done by Eyre Switzer of Chillicothe. This was an 11-room, two-story house.

Mr. Morris was an early breeder of purebred livestock, Shorthorn cattle, Shropshire, Cotswold and Marino sheep, Berkshire hogs, and Percheron horses. He showed stock at many shows and sold over a wide area. It is said that the James brothers once stopped here for food and lodging. The house was later occupied by a son, Will Morris. One night, in an exchange of gunfire, Mr. Morris killed a chicken thief. The farm consisted of 1200 acres. These members of the family are buried in Edgewood Cemetery.

In 1869 the Chillicothe/Des Moines Railroad was graded across this farm. Track was never laid but cuts and fills are still visible. - Ora C. Morris


Ora C. and Dorothy Morris

This farm was the Clark Morris home, purchased in 1864 by his grandfather, John Morris, Before the Civil War it belonged to Lewis Best, a slave trader and notorious bushwhacker. The house, a one-story, frame dwelling, was probably built by Mr. Best. There were at one time slave houses nearby.

Clark Morris (1883-1965) married Pearl May (1883-1956)). They were the parents of Dorothy and Ora Morris. Mr. Morris went into the threshing and sawmill business with his father-in-law about 1912. They purchased two J. I. Case separators, an Advance engine, and an Altman Taylor engine. They were both run until about 1934 when they were replaced by gas-powered tractors.

About that time Mr. Morris became engaged in livestock and grain hauling. He took livestock to Kansas City, St. Joseph, St. Louis, and other markets and hauled back feed, supplies, and coal from Mosby mines. He owned an International truck that he drove more than 125,000 miles. He was also a skilled carpenter, building several houses and a number of large, hip-roofed cattle barns which are still in use.

Mr. and Mrs. Morris are buried in the May Cemetery. - Ora C. Morris


Geneva Neis and Victor Neis

Peter Schorr, born 1832, and his wife, Katherine Eber Schorr, born 1838, came from Germany to America at an early age, were married, and lived at Quincy, Ill., where other relatives had settled. They came to Missouri and bought this 40 acres (SW ¼ of the NE ¼ of Sec. 33, Twp. 59, Rg. 23) in Livingston County from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad in the year 1870. They built a two-room house with an upstairs.

They were the parents of nine children; three died in infancy. Only one was born in Missouri. Emma Schorr was born in this house February 10, 1880. The other children were George Schorr, born 1867, who died at the age of 15 years; Henry G. Schorr, born 1870, remained a bachelor and died in 1928; Louisa Schorr, born 1872, married William Uhrmacher, was the mother of five children, Charles, Nellie, Hester, Mable, and Walter; Katherine S. Schorr, born 1874, married William Neis, had one child, Viola Anna; Emma Schorr, born 1880, married Vernon Neis, and they were the parents of two children, Katherine Geneva and Victor Schorr; Elizabeth Schorr, born 1877, died at the age of two years.

Peter Schorr owned the farm until he passed away in 1886. His wife continued to live there with her children, as they were young, until she passed away in 1909. There were only two children at home at the time, Henry and Emma. Emma married in 1917, and Henry continued to live there and farm until he was killed on the railroad in 1928. The estate was settled, and Emma and Vernon Neis bought the farm as the 40 acres they owned joined it. Vernon died in 1955 and Emma died in 1968. Their son, Victor, and daughter, Geneva, now own the farm. All are buried in the May Cemetery southwest of Chula, Mo., except for Henry Schorr, who is buried in Plainview Cemetery north of Chula.

The farm is located 2½ miles south of Chula, Mo., and is all upland farmland. Wheat, corn, oats, and hay were raised along with livestock of cattle, hogs, and chickens. When Peter and Katherine Schorr moved to Missouri, one mile north of their home there was a town which was called Dog Town, and later named Cottonwood Grove. A store, a doctor, and several houses served the area. But when the Milwaukee Railroad came through the country, the town was moved one and one-half miles north and was named Chula, Mo.

A school was built the year the Schorrs came to Missouri. It was one-half mile north of their home and was called Maple Grove No. 20. Their children, some grandchildren, and some great-grandchildren received their 8th grade educations there. Henry Schorr served as clerk and director of Maple Grove school. He also served as Cream Ridge Township tax collector for several years. - Geneva Neis


John L. Peery

William F. Peery was a Virginian by birth and about 1819 or 1820 he came to Missouri, settling in Howard County, where he remained until coming to this county in 1838. On November 22, 1838, he married Miss Margaret J. Hutchison. Of the six children from this union John Hutchison Peery remained on the farm in Livingston County. William F. Peery was a prominent man of his day, and in political affairs was very active and influential. For two terms he was the representative to the State Legislature, and later served as State Senator. At the outbreak of the Civil War he enlisted under Gen. Slack in the Confederate Army, was made paymaster, and also held a commission as Colonel. While recruiting for soldiers to join the army, he was surprised while sleeping and brutally murdered, another to lay down his life upon the altar of his convictions.

John H. Peery was one of the native-born citizens of this county, born October 29, 1841. He continued to follow farming up to 1861, when he, too, cast his fortunes with the Southern Confederacy and remained in service until the cessation of hostilities. He took part in many engagements: among others, those of Carthage, Wilson Creek, Lexington, and Pea Ridge. After being transferred to the Mississippi Department, he took part in Gen. J. E. Johnston’s Campaign, and was with Hood until the close of the war. Twice he was a prisoner, but both times he was exchanged. After returning from the army, Mr. Peery was engaged in farming. He had a beautiful place consisting of 560 acres and was well known as an excellent cattle feeder and livestock producer. Mr. Peery’s first marriage was to Miss Elizabeth C. Cruse. To this union five children were born. Mrs. Peery died October 19, 1883, and afterwards Mr. Peery married Miss Florence H. Peery of Grundy, County. To this union were born four children, John Roger, Ethel, Jesse, and James. Mr. Peery was a member of Masonic Lodge A.F.& A.M., of Springhill. Mr. Peery passed away August 2, 1918. Burial was in the family cemetery west of the family home.

John Roger Peery remained on the home place and continued farming. He attended grade school at Blackburn and Chillicothe Business College. On October 28, 1925, he married Miss Hazel Grace Lipke.. To this union two children were born: John Lipke, May 18, 1927; and Mildred Louise, February 24, 1929 (now Mrs. Merle Doughty). Mr. Peery took an active part in community affairs, such as serving on school boards, road district boards, the Democratic Committeeman of J a c k s o n Township, and Livingston County Highway Commission. He was a member of the Bethel Methodist Church. He was a 50 year member of Jamesport Masonic Lodge 564 AF & AM. Mr. Peery passed away March 29,1972. Burial was in the Masonic Cemetery in Jamesport.

John Lipke Peery has spent his lifetime on the original Peery farm. He attended the Blackburn rural school. He served in the United States Army during World War II. He held the rank of Staff Sergeant. Mr. Peery has worked for the Rock Island Railroad for 32 years and has continued to operate the family farm, producing beef cattle and sheep. He is a member of the Jamesport Masonic Lodge 564 AF & AM; Gallatin Chapter 11 R.A.M.; and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 4131 in Jamesport.

This farm is located in Jackson Township, Sec.18-59-25. It was purchased in August, 1839. - John L. Peery


John J. and Okie Phillips

Robert Phillips was born in Kentucky, July 19, 1820. Perlina Strawn was born in North Carolina, April 22, 1825. They were married March 28, 1843, and came to Missouri in a one-horse covered wagon in 1843, crossing the Missouri River at Brunswick. They settled in Livingston County, Medicine Township (NW ¼ of Sec. 7, Twp. 59, Rg. 22). He purchased 139.95 acres of land from the government at $1.25 per acre. Part of it was prairie land and part timberland.

They built a two-room, log house, each room being 18 feet square with a fireplace at each end. Here they raised their family of ten children, eight boys and two girls: John J., born December 29, 1843; Bruce, born August 10, 1845; Dennison, born November 17,1846; Amos, born April 30, 1849; Edward, born June 19, 1851; Ruth, born July 22, 1853; Rebecca, born January 28, 1855; George, born September 15, 1858; Hiram, born April 5, 1860; and James, born May 4, 1862.

Their crops were corn, wheat, and some tobacco. They also had horses, cattle, and hogs. In addition to farming he did blacksmithing, and was the first blacksmith in Medicine Township. Money was scarce, so in order that he could pay for his land, he went to Chillicothe and opened up a blacksmith shop where the Beauty Academy is now located, 610 Webster. They were Presbyterians. He was the first Justice of the Peace in Medicine Township. Their Post Office was at Alpha, Mo., a small town in Grundy County about 2½ miles north of their home.

The country was open range, until fences could be built out of rails which they made from the timber. There were no wells, so they would drive their cattle to Medicine Creek to water. They would take along some wooden barrels in a wagon, or sled, to haul water home for household purposes. When their hogs were ready for. market, several of the farmers would band together, drive them to Brunswick, and load them on barges to go down the river to the St. Louis market.

May 6,1863, during the Civil War, Robert, age 42, was accidentally killed by a horse kicking him on the head. This left his wife, Perlina, the whole responsibility of raising, their family, the youngest, James, being one year old. He had continued to buy land from the government and left an estate of 420 acres, or 40 acres to each of his children and his wife. The taxes were $13.66 for the year 1863.

The children all grew up and married, except Hiram and James. James was drowned in the swollen waters of Muddy Creek at the age of 21. Hiram lived with his mother on the home place where they built a large, two-story house in 1893. Perlina died June 24, 1898, and Hiram died November 26, 1926, at the age of 66. Robert, Perlina, Hiram, and Ruth are buried at the Alpha Cemetery in Grundy County. Bruce married Ann Owens and they moved to California. Dennison married Malcena Crews, and they lived on farms in the vicinity until retiring and moving to Linneus. Edward married Elizabeth Mullin, and they lived in Nevada. Amos married and moved to California. Ruth married Alva Salisbury. Rebecca married John Smith. She died at the age of 36.

John J., at the age of 18, enlisted February 15, 1862, in the Missouri Volunteers, Co. B, 23 Regiment, Infantry, for a term of three years, He was with Sherman in the "March from Atlanta to the Sea." He was also in some of the battles. He was discharged at Settlers Ferry, Georgia, February 1, 1865. He married Nancy Minerva Coberly, May 8, 1870. She was born December 21, 1844. They lived on the 40 acres he inherited from his father. Their children were Orlando O., born March 1, 1871; Ozella, born April 30,1872; Jennie, born November 4,1873; Mate, born February 23, 1882; and Floyd, born July 19, 1885.

Their house burned in 1881 and they built a three-room, frame house. He was Justice of the Peace in Medicine Township from 1873 to 1897. He purchased some of the original land from his brothers. The children attended the Phillips School which was built in the 70s on the land that George Phillips inherited. Part of it is still owned today by his son, Wallace.

Minerva died April 5, 1907, and John J., Sr., died September 7, 1920. Minerva, John J., Sr., Ozella, and Floyd are buried at the Wallace Cemetery, three miles east of Chula and one-half mile north.

Ozella married Elmer Rudd, Jennie married Isaiah Transue, Mate married Melvin Davenport, and Floyd never married. Orlando O. Phillips married Lillie Davenport September 22, 1897. She was born July 23, 1875. Their children were: John J., Jr., born December 24, 1898; and Lena Fern, born April 13, 1911. John J., Jr., was born in the house that his great-grandmother and Hiram had built in 1893.

In 1902 Orlando purchased the 40 acres of land that Rebecca Smith had inherited from her father, Robert Phillips. When his father, John J. Sr., passed away in 1920, he inherited a part of the land and purchased the rest from his brother and sisters. Besides general farming, he would buy feeder cattle and fatten them for market. He also raised hogs and mules. Lillie always had a large flock of Rhode Island Red hens and they would hatch their own eggs. They purchased their first car (a Chevrolet) in 1917.

When their hogs were ready for market, the neighbors would help each other by coming with their teams and high-wheeled wagons with a slatted cover over the top (to keep the hogs from jumping out), load up, and haul them to Chula to be shipped to the Kansas City market. It was a distance of five miles to the Milwaukee Railroad Station. Also they would drive their cattle to Chula to be shipped to Kansas City or Chicago.

When Hiram passed away in 1926, he willed his estate to Orlando. This was some of the original land his father, Robert, had purchased from the government. For a number of years Orlando was an Elder of the Mt. Zion South Methodist Church (commonly known as the Manning Church) three miles east of Chula. Lillie was a member of the Baptist Church at Alpha. She passed away February 4, 1929. October 20, 1930, Orlando married Ida May (Jenkins) Brotherton, who was born April 14,1887. She had two children, Chester and Margaret, They lived on the farm until he passed away December 13, 1959. Orlando and Lillie are buried in the Plainview Cemetery one-half mile north of Chula.

John J., Jr., and Lena attended the Phillips School and the Chula High School. They usually rode a horse to the Chula School which was 5½ miles from home. Lena married Wade Smith.

I, John J. Phillips, Jr., married Okie Jacobs August 1S, 1922. She was born December 12, 1902. We have four daughters: Bonnie Mae, born February 15, 1927; Mildred Berniece, born March 1, 1932; Doris Joan born July 16, 1934; and Pearl Darlene, August 3 1936. I farmed with my father a number of years and purchased from him some of the land my great-grandfather had purchased from the government. We raise corn, wheat, oats, and soybeans) and have a herd of Polled Hereford cows.

We are members of the Alpha Baptist Church of which I am a Deacon. I was elected on the Agriculture Stabilization Conservation Committee in Livingston County in 1945. After serving seven years, I was appointed Office Manager in 1953 and served 13 years before retiring in 1966. When my father, Orlando, passed away in 1959, I inherited a part of his land and purchased the rest from the other heirs, most of it being the original land. Taxes this year averaged $1.60 per acre. Compare this to the $13.66 on 139-95 hundredths acres back in 1850.

Our daughters: Bonnie Mae, married A. B. Cook; Berniece married Albert Bonderer; Joan married Robert Timmons; and Darlene, married Larry Huff. We have 27 grandchildren and 8 great-grandchildren. - John J. and Okie Phillips


Hazel Stamper Remick

Judge John Stone was born in Lancaster, Ohio, November 9, 1805. When he was 22 years of age he married Susannah Stover. They came to Utica in August, 1837. There were only two cabins there. That year the town of Utica was laid out. In 1838 he fought in the Morman War. He bought over 1,000 acres of land from the government at $1.25 per acre. President Martin Van Buren signed the papers on August 2, 1838. Our place was among those acres (SW ¼ Fract. Sec. 18 and NE ¼, NW ¼ Fract. Sec. 19, all in Twp. 57, Rg. 24). He donated 40 acres to the railroad for the first depot. He was elected Judge November 4, 1862. A member of the Baptist Church and Masonic Lodge. There were eight children in the family. He was my husband’s great-grandfather. Ashford Allen Stone, my husband’s grandfather, was one of his children. He was born December 19, 1840. He married Mary Hoythey (later changed to Hoy).

They had four girls: Susie Stone Stamper (my husband’s mother), Blanche Stone Galbreath, Martha (Mattie) Stone Drake, and Mary (Mayme) Stone. He was a Civil War veteran. He was a member of the Baptist Church, Masonic Lodge, and also served as Judge of the County Court. His father retired from farming in 1860, and that is when he took over this place. It was sold to a relative, James Plunkett, in 1884.

Susie Stamper had four boys: Herbert, Ashford Jackson, John, and Harry Ashford was born July 21, 1897, and died August 23, 1948. He married Hazel Kent, and they had six children: Mary (Bosler), Susan Potts, R.N., William N., John Allen, Bessie McGinty, R.N., and Ashford Jackson, Jr.

He was a veteran of World War I, a member of the Composite Regiment known as Pershing’s Own. He was also a member of the Baptist Church, Masonic Lodge, The American Legion, and V. F. W.

On our farm, known as the A. J. Stamper estate, besides my home, William and John both have homes. It is a ‘hilltop’ farm-a wonderful place to live-for the grandchildren to hunt arrowheads and wildlife. All six children are members of the Baptist Church, and all three boys are members of the Masonic Lodge. William was in the Air Force in World War II. John was in the Navy in World War II until he retired. Susan was in World War II as an Army R.N..

There is a family cemetery on the place known as the Stone Cemetery, where most of those deceased are buried. - Hazel Stamper Remick,


Holton R. Rickenbrode (Rickenbrode)

Solomon Rickenbrode moved his family from Clarion County, Pa., to the quarter section (NE ¼ of Sec. 26, Twp. 56, Rg. 23) of "raw land" he had purchased from Robert Browning in the fall of 1869. For a few weeks the family lived with a cousin (Martin Kapp) while he prepared a temporary home for the family and a shed for wintering the stock. They had brought the skills learned and practiced in their home in Pennsylvania, which was no longer a frontier settlement, a flax wheel, and a complete set of carpenter’s and cabinet maker’s tools. It was said that the first February in Missouri was so warm that they wrote back to relatives that they had come into a wonderful country for they had planted some garden seeds. Needless to say, they never again tried to plant a garden in February. The oldest son was soon enrolled in Kapp school; the other two children were not of school age.

The "raw land" had prairie grass on the northern 2/3 of it, and timber along a creek in the southern part. Some of the fences between the fields were planted hedge (osage orange) which turned stock well and had to be trimmed regularly. There was a never-failing spring in the creek bed, but wells and cisterns had to be dug for the farmstead.

As the years passed Mr. Rickenbrode "broke" the sod, and constructed larger and better buildings. The barn was enlarged using 12" beams, and it was put together with wooden pins. It is still in use, though the shingle roof has been replaced several times. Originally there was a threshing floor with a two-section granary for horse feed in the middle of the main part, with stanchions for cows and horses on either side, and a hay mow to hold enough hay to winter many head of stock.

The seven-room house was a story and a half with Victorian trim along the eaves, around the top of the front porch, and windows. Inside there was a hand-carved, walnut molding around the windows and doors in the front rooms and front hall with its circular stairs. There were many closets with built-ins opening into the large kitchen. Eventually a summer kitchen was added to the west side of the house. Grouped around the house were a cave with cave house, a carpenter shop, a blacksmith shop, and a smoke house.

There was no flax raised, so after spinning the loose flax she had brought with her, Mrs. Rickenbrode had no more use for that skill. She dried apples and peaches before there were any cans to be purchased, raised a large garden so that kraut was made and potatoes, cabbage, and other root crops could be stored in bins in the cellar under the house. Butter would be made in the summer and stored in crocks (with a layer of salt on the top). When at first tin, then later glass, cans became available, fruits were canned, including the wild blackberries and gooseberries that grew in the timber.

The family butchered several hogs each winter, so that there was lard "tried out," sausage, head cheese, and pickled pigs feet made, Since the stoves were wood burning, the ashes were placed in open, elevated barrels, so that lye could "leach down" and be used for making both soft and hard soap for laundering clothes and for toilet soap.

Between the house and the barn were the chicken’ houses, and a granary with tight bins for wheat and oats. This granary was gradually lengthened to have a carriage house, corn crib (ear corn) and a hog house. Also built near the barn was another shed for storing wagons and machinery, and a corn crib with a driveway between the two cribs.

As most farms of the late 19th century, this farm was almost self-sufficient. Mr. Rickenbrode, his sons, and hired men used walking plows and cultivators for raising the corn. Then as riding equipment became available, it was used. The excess eggs and butter were taken to the store and traded for goods not produced at home. Grain and hay were fed to cattle, hogs, horses, and mules, and thus marketed. Cattle would be driven to a railroad siding, but hogs had to be taken in wagons.

Mr. and Mrs. Rickenbrode were Lutherans in Pennsylvania, but soon joined the United Brethern Church which had established an academy and later a college in Avalon. They sent all three children (only the oldest continued until he received a degree) to this educational institution.

In the earliest years, mail came to Asper, about three miles southwest. When there was a post office established at Avalon, the mail could be gotten whenever any member of the family would call for it at the post office. Eventually, the R. F. D. was established and mail was delivered to their own "box" located at the crossroads a quarter of a mile east of the house. This route came from Hale. The local weekly (Avalon Aurora) was not published many years, then the Hale Leader was the source of local news. Farm papers were subscribed and occasionally city papers were taken.

As Mr. Rickenbrode prospered he bought more land in the adjacent north section, so that he had a 40-acre plot for each child. The oldest son F. W., lived in a four-room house in the plot directly across the road to the north until he purchased his wife’s family farm and moved to it in 1900. The younger son continued to own 80 acres for many years. He was a teacher for many years at the State Normal School at Maryville now Northwest Missouri State University. He was honored by that institution when it named its athletic field for him. The daughter spent the first year of her marriage with her husband who was doing graduate work in chemistry in Germany. After returning to the United States, her .family eventually moved to California where her husband was a teacher in a senior high school and junior college at the time of his death.

In the early part of the twentieth century, Mr. Rickenbrode had a family in the house across the road. They did most of the farm work, so that he managed the work and mostly did chores. After his death in 1912, Mrs. Rickenbrode remained in the big house for a number of years. The farm remained as an "estate" in the family until F. W. and his son, Holton R., finally bought it from the other heirs. For a few years it was rented, then the new owners began to change the type of operation with the coming of power machinery. The fields were gradually enlarged by bulldozing out the hedge fences; terracing was done and liming and commercial fertilizer came into use. The small amount of timberland still existing has been cleared of brush and grass planted there.

At the death of F. W. Rickenbrode, the Holton R. Rickenbrode family became the sole owners, and the change in farming operations accelerated. The farm now consists of the original quarter section and the 40 acres directly across the road north of the farmstead.. The barns, without the threshing floors and stanchions, were used to house cattle, and hay was stored in bales in the mow. All the small buildings between the house and the barn were torn down and a single metal building erected. Holton R. and wife, Helen Canning Rickenbrode, began restoring the Victorian house, where they eventually moved in 1962. They tore away the summer kitchen and extended the house to the south, without changing the original roof lines and general appearance. The house now has LP heat, electricity, modern plumbing, central air conditioning, and larger rooms on the first floor. All the land has been "seeded down," and a cow/ calf operation is in use. -Francyl Rickenbrode


Holton R. Rickenbrode (Roberts)

Joseph D. Roberts moved his family from Ohio to a farm near Cottonwood Grove (a small settlement in Cream Ridge Township) in 1869. His livestock included sheep. The oldest son drowned while helping to wash the sheep in Medicine Creek. His house burned so that he lost much of the household equipment he had brought west.

In a few years he sold that farm and bought land near Avalon. There he had a general store in part of his house (later the telephone office) and his sons were to do the farm chores, etc. After a few years he built a house and barn on his land east of the north-south road (now JJ). The family no longer operated the store. Mr. Roberts was attracted to Avalon in order to educate his children (four sons and four daughters) in the new Avalon Academy (later Avalon College).

After Mr. Roberts’ death in 1884, Mrs. Roberts and the sons continued to operate the farm. Three of the daughters and two of the sons taught school. Two of the daughters married and lived in northwest Iowa. The oldest son went to Chicago and obtained an M. D. degree. Finally, Mrs. Roberts and the two younger sons, now both married, were left in the old house. The oldest daughter married F. W. Rickenbrode and went to live on the Rickenbrode farm south of Avalon. In 1900 the F. W. Rickenbrodes bought out the heirs and moved into Mrs. Rickenbrode’s former home. The first year, 1901, was a disastrous drought year and hard times followed, As Mr. Rickenbrode prospered, he built a large addition to the existing barn. He moved. a barn from a different field, built a summer kitchen and adjacent shop to the east wall of the house. He also built a chicken house and hog house. He had much more stock than was normally raised on so small a farm. For a while, he milked cows, using a hand-powered milk separator and sold the cream to the new Co-op creamery in Chillicothe. Field crops were raised with horse-drawn machinery, and barn manure was scattered for fertilizer. A large cistern collected the rain off the roof of the large barn; this was used to water horses and cattle. Ponds were used for watering hogs. A well 220 feet deep was drilled and a windmill used to pump the water into a concrete watering trough for horses and cattle. Rotation was practiced in the grain fields; corn, oats, clover hay, and some cow peas were grown. Enough hay was usually raised to winter the horses; the cattle also ate cane and corn fodder. Hogs were usually fattened to 350 to 400 pounds and sold at almost a year of age. The additional corn necessary was usually bought from neighbors; and sometimes it was hauled six or seven miles.

By the time this country got into World War I, farm life began to change rapidly because of the more common use of gasoline engines. Mr. Rickenbrode bought his first car, a Model T Ford, which necessitated a new building. A garage was built large enough that part could be used as a repair shop.

Threshing of small grain (oats or wheat usually) was done with a threshing machine drawn from farm to farm by a steam engine. Several farmers formed a "ring" and would hire some owners of a threshing "rig" to thresh for all the members of the ring. When the threshing machine was pulled into a farm lot, the other members of the ring brought wagons with grain boxes or hay racks to haul the bundles of shocked grain directly from the fields to the machine. The steam engine was always "set up" at a distance from the machine to minimize the danger of sparks from the coal-fired steam engine setting fire to either the un-threshed bundles of grain or the straw stack. This cooperative effort lasted until one man’s threshing was done, then the machine was taken to the next farm, etc. Threshing time might extend several weeks in the summer depending on the weather (rain or heavy dew would stop operations) and the number of acres each man had sown to grain. Besides the drivers of wagon teams, there were several men necessary to pitch "the bundles" on the wagon in the field. The "stacker" was the man who stacked the threshed straw blown from the machine to build straw stacks. This job required a special skill. The thresher’s dinner was served by the housewife at noon. It consisted of great quantities of hearty food, such as meat (roast beef, fried ham, and/or fried chicken) and many vegetables, quantities of iced tea, with pie and/or cake, and maybe ice cream. Sometimes supper was also served, but mostly the men had to get home in time "to chore" before dark. After finishing the eating of a huge meal, and a rest of possibly half an hour, the men would "hitch up" the horses-which had been unhitched, watered, and fed before the meal-and continue work for four or five hours.

Corn was harvested in the fall and/or winter. A team and wagon, having one side of its grain bed built up to form a "bang board," was used. The driver would start the team "down a corn row," then he would walk alongside the wagon, shucking the ears, one by one, with a special hand motion and throwing them into the wagon box. A skilled person might shuck a wagon load in half a day. Sometimes the ears were "snapped" (broken off the stalk with the husks left on) and stored this way. One could "snap" a load of corn quicker than "husk" or "shuck" one. If the weather permitted, "corn picking" could be finished before the worst storms of the winter set in. Sometimes in a "wet season," all of the corn could not be gathered before spring, almost having the new crop planted on the heels of the harvesting of the previous year’s crop.

If hay was scarce, some farmers would cut the corn stalks before they were completely cured, and form a corn shock in the middle of a plot of ground 16 hills square. These shocks were tied with binder twine. The corn had to be shucked out of each shock later in the season, then the corn fodder would be scattered out in a pasture field for the cattle (and horses) to eat. Some farms had silos for storage of "chopped green corn" and in later years, "pit silos" were also used to obtain a maximum amount of food from a given acreage. Mr. Rickenbrode used all of these methods of harvesting at various times, according to the weather, time, and extra labor required.

Horses became a luxury and gasoline replaced grain and hay as the requirement for "horse power." The mechanical equipment became more complicated and expensive, breakdowns and repairs became the causes of lost time and extra expense. The increase in the production of grain and meat was considered very patriotic during World War II "to win the war," and after its conclusion, to help feed the starving peoples of the world. Some of the pasture and meadow land were "plowed up" so as to have more land for the desired corn and soybeans. F. W. Rickenbrode had added ten acres to his original acreage. Some years additional land was rented, usually several miles away, because there was no land nearby for sale. Holton Rickenbrode bought 40 acres "on the bottom" (Grand River overflow land) some three miles north of Avalon. When the season was good, the yield was greater on such land, but some years there would be a flood, and no crop.

F. W. Rickenbrode continued to live on the farmstead after the death of Mrs. Rickenbrode in 1951. They had always "raised chickens," which produced all the eggs and chickens for their own use and at times, some to sell. As with many farmers, the "egg money" frequently bought most staples. A large garden also was raised. Mrs. Rickenbrode canned many quarts of fruit and vegetables to enhance the winter diet. There had been a small orchard near the h6use when the farm was purchased, and during the first decade or so, cherry, plum, and peach trees were planted. As the years passed, the trees died and were never replaced. Farm families generally were no longer producers of all their own food.

As Holton Rickenbrode and his family gradually took over the management and work of all farm land, the land adjoining Avalon was used more and more exclusively for corn and soybeans with some rotation of other crops. The south f arm was used for pasture and hay production and the cropped land would be seeded down.

After F. W. Rickenbrode’s death (at the age of 101 years) the Holton R. Rickenbrode family became the sole owners of all land. Their family consisted of two sons, both of whom worked on the farms during high school, and sometimes after that. Upon graduation from college, both sons went into other types of work. The older son’s college career was interrupted when he volunteered and spent five years in the Coast Guard. Upon completion of his service, he was discharged with the rank of Lieutenant Junior Grade, and then continued his interrupted college career. Upon graduating as a mechanical engineer, the younger son (by this time married) worked a year for NASA (not too far from the university) while his wife completed her degree. Immediately they moved to Ohio.

After F. W. Rickenbrode’s death, the house was left with much of the family accumulations intact. Particularly his large library of books and files of magazines, as well as furniture, were not disposed of. The house was locked and often visited by various members of the family to obtain articles, hunt records, etc. When the house burned, having caught fire from a grass fire in a neighboring lot, some of the library burned for 24 hours. Many family heirlooms and records were destroyed.

Now, part of the land in this farm is "cropped on the shares." Modern practices of liming and of using heavy applications of commercial fertilizer are used. The hog and chicken houses are unused. The other barns may house machinery and extra hay bales. After harvest, cattle from the south farm are usually brought to this place to "clean up" anything that can be used as forage, then the barns may be used to shelter the stock. Sometimes grain is stored in metal grain bins on the farm, but usually it is taken directly from the combine to a commercial elevator. - Francyl Rickenbrode


Verl E. Roberts (Uhrmacher)

Nicholas Uhrmacher (1818-1914) and Catherine (Sebastian) Uhrmacher moved with their family from Milwaukee, Wis., to Livingston County, Mo., in 1870. They were of German origin. He was a shoemaker by trade. They settled on 80 acres that lie on a ridge between Medicine Creek and the East Fork of the Grand River. Here they built a two-story frame house. They lived here the remainder of their lives and are buried in the May Cemetery.

A son, Joseph (1866-1957), was born in Wisconsin. He grew up on this farm, attended school at Cottonwood Grove, which was before Maple Grove Public School No.20 was built. In 1886 the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad was surveyed across the farm. Members of the grading crew boarded at the Uhrmacher home. East of the house is a fill. Wheel scrapers, horses and mules were used. A mule died in the harness and was buried in the fill.

Joseph Uhrmacher married Louise Gardner (1871-1940). She was the daughter of George A. (1843-1915) and Tina (Ganter) Gardner. The parents were of German origin. The father was killed in the Mexican War. George served in the Ohio Volunteers from 1861-1865. He came to Livingston County in 1883. He farmed and had business interests in the new town of Chula, merchandising, milling, and President of the Exchange Bank of Chula, Mo.

Mr. and Mrs. Uhrmacher lived on this farm all of their lives and added to the house which is now 100 years old. She was a talented artist. They were the parents of one daughter, Georgia (1906-1970). Georgia attended Maple Grove School, St. Joseph Academy, Kirksville State, and the University of Missouri where she received a Master’s Degree. She taught for several years.

In 1937 Georgia married Verl Roberts who grew up on an adjoining farm. They were the parents of James, Richard, Joseph, Judith (Thomas), and Ann (Campbell). - Verl E. Roberts


Verl E. Roberts (Roberts)

Luellyn Roberts was born in Wales in 1840. He served as a volunteer in the 12th Mo. Cavalry, Civil War. He married Ida Critten. They came from Daviess County to Livingston County in 1873. He died the following year and was buried in the May Cemetery.

A son, Elmer R. Roberts (1873-1939), was born in Daviess County. He attended school at Maple Grove District No. 20. He worked on the Milwaukee Railroad for seven years. In 1900 he married Bessie Woods. They were the parents of Nola Roberts Patterson and Verl Roberts.


George W. Rockhold

This farm is located about two miles west of Utica, The first owner in 1840 was Ora T. Kirtley. John Rockhold (1814-1877) of German origin and Mary A. Cave Rockhold (1822-1886) bought this farm in 1868. John Rockhold had previously bought land in the same township in June, 1835. At his father’s death, the land passed to his son, Asa T. Rockhold, one of nine children. In 1948 George Rockhold became the owner. He was born in Utica. When he was one year old, he moved with his parents to this farm. He is now 85 years old and still lives on the farm. He had a sister, Lennie R. Rockhold Moore, wife of Jessie Moore. Mr. Rockhold is a member of the United Methodist Church. Mrs. Rockhold is deceased.

There was a Rockhold family cemetery on one of the early farms. Many of the family are buried in the Utica cemetery. _ Wayne Rockhold


Harry and Viva (Watson) Sanson

David Hathorne Watson, born 1825, and wife, Mary, born 1824, moved by covered wagon from Wheeling, West Virginia, about 1871, along with other families to Wheeling, Missouri. They had four sons: Ellis, Arthur, Emery David, and Carl, also a daughter, Lou. They settled on a farm about 11/2 miles south and east of Wheeling, Missouri. They built a small house: later they built a two-story house that stood until 1975. They farmed and raised cattle.

Three of the sons grew to manhood, married, and left the farm, leaving Emery with his parents. Mrs. Mary Watson died August 8, 1894, at the age of 70. On December 24, 1903, Emery David and Vi Dora Adams were married by the Rev. Heaton at Meadville, Missouri. They lived on the farm with his father, who died May 19, 1905, at the age of 80 years. Both he and his wife are buried at the Botts Cemetery, north of Meadville. Three children were born to Emery and Dora Watson, Viva Ann, Glen, and Harold. Emery and his wife took over the farming of their 80 acres and later bought more land. He and his sons farmed with horses; their mode of transportation was with horses and a surrey or wagon. The surrey had headlights on each side, burning kerosene. Later they bought a seven passenger Studebaker car in the year of 1912.

A colored man and his wife moved in one house and helped what they could. At one time they had been slaves. They were known as Uncle Harrison and Aunt Zetta to the entire neighborhood.

The three Watson children went to the South Wheeling School for eight years, and then to the Wheeling High School. The land for the South Wheeling School was given by the Scruby family in about 1874. At one time this school building doubled for Sunday School services. And, of course, spelling bees and pie and box suppers were held there often. In 1940 this school closed and the pupils were taken by bus to the Wheeling Consolidated School. The last to teach was the late Mr. Hobart Sprout. In 1948 the building was sold to Abie Corzette.

All of the early farming was done by horses, the wheat was cut by a binder, and later threshed with a steam engine and thresher. Wheat was taken to the mill at Chillicothe and exchanged for a supply of flour. All corn was shucked by hand. Years later came the pickers, and now the shellers, to harvest the corn. The corn and grain were put through their big grinder, driven by a gasoline engine, for cattle and hog feed.

In 1905 both Emory and Dora Watson joined the Wheeling Baptist Church. Mrs. Dora Watson was born January 7, 1873, died in July, 1923.

Emory David Watson was born August 8, 1868, and he died May 23, 1942. Both were buried in the Wheeling Cemetery.

In 1942 Viva Ann (Watson) Sanson and her husband, Harry Sanson, and family moved on the 80 acres where her parents and grandparents had resided 71 years before, making this farm in one family for the past 105 years. They are the parents of five children, Charles David, William Harry, Jr., Stanley Eugene, Jerry Ray, and Mildred Ann. All went through the Wheeling school and graduated from the 12th grade. All belonged to the Wheeling Baptist Church. Charles served in the U. S. Navy for six years and Stanley served four years.

The children of Viva and Harry Sanson held a 50th Wedding Anniversary reception for their parents in December of 1975. Farming continues on this 80 acres besides the rented ground, also raising stock, milk cows, and hogs. Now with modern machinery farming has changed a great deal. The 100-year-old house was taken down in 1975 and replaced with a new, three-bedroom mobile home. - Harry and Viva Ann Sanson


George and Ruth Seiberling

Henry Moser Seiberling was born at Seiberlingsville, Pa. (near Allentown), in 1838. When the Civil War broke out he joined the Second Illinois Cavalry and fought with them through the Tennessee battles all the way to New Orleans. While in Illinois he met Carrie Edel, who had been born in New York City in 1844. Her family had moved to Illinois and were living on a farm in the western part of the state. They were married in late 1864, and early in 1865 moved to a farm at Mexico, Mo., where Henry M. Seiberling worked as a farm hand in an orchard. In that fall their first baby was to be born, Carrie Edel Seiberling went to Warrenton, Mo., to stay with an aunt and uncle. The uncle, Mr. Koch, was president of the German Methodist College in Warrenton. Charles Milton Seiberling was born in October, 1865, in their home.

When Henry M. Seiberling had saved enough money from his job, he arranged to buy a farm from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad near Chillicothe, Mo. He and his wife and small son came to Chillicothe in the fall of 1868. They were accompanied by Henry’s cousin, Henry Moser and his wife. The five of them lived in a log cabin on the Mose Bowen farm during the first winter while they were building frame houses on adjoining 40 acres. The first Seiberling house had only two rooms, but as more money was available, rooms were added until it became a story and a half. Katherine or Katie Seiberling was born in 1869. Henry M. Seiberling became a Justice of the Peace in Blue Mound Township. The family attended Sunday School in a log school house west of the present site of Liberty Church. Later the Sunday School moved to Kincaid School, and in the early 1890’s when Liberty Methodist Church was started the four Seiberlings became charter members.

Three large barns were built between 1892 and 1901. An orchard was developed. They developed a beef herd of Shorthorn and Hereford cattle and milked Jersey cows. They did general farming. Gradually five more 40-acre plots were added to the farm.

In 1901 Charles married Estella Linton, who had been born northwest of Avalon in 1878. She was the daughter of Joseph Wilson and Malinda Keener Linton who had moved to Avalon from western Pennsylvania. She had attended school at Avalon Colleg6 and had taught school at Condron. They continued to live on the home place. The same year Katie married William D. Steele, a neighbor. Charles Milton and Estella Linton Seiberling had three children. The oldest daughter, Edith, died of scarlet fever in 1934. The second daughter, Lena May, married Buel B. (Jerry) Bowen in 1944; and the only son, George Henry, married Ruth Elizabeth Cochran in 1946.

The Seiberling home had been remodeled in 1916 to a square house with ten rooms. This house burned in 1933 and a new home was built at a total cost of $4000. Henry Moser Seiberling died in 1914. His wife, Carrie, died in 1925. Charles Milton Seiberling died in 1954, and his wife, Estella, died in 1947. Jerry Bowen died in 1959.

George and Ruth Seiberling have three children: Carol Ann, who married Brad Roush in 1973. They are the parents of a son, Justin Christopher Roush, and live in Maryville, Mo. David Mark Seiberling married Cindy Lou Bate in 1974 and resides in Chillicothe. Martha Sue Seiberling was born in 1962 and is a junior high student. All have been active members of Liberty United Methodist Church and have taken an active part in the Liberty 4-H Club. - George and Ruth Seiberling


Willard A. Silvey

In 1836 John Silvey purchased 273 acres from Alexander Silvey, who had bought it two years earlier from the U. S. Government. He built a log house sixty feet long with fireplace chimneys in each end and a breezeway through the middle. He took honey, bacon, and tobacco to Brunswick by boat, and brought back food and supplies. At the time of the Civil War bushwhackers at night attempted to rob him and burn the house. He was shot in the calf of the leg. He escaped and was treed by timber wolves who were attracted by the blood.

In 1866 the farm passed to Joseph W. Silvey, a son. In 1903 Joseph Silvey built a brick house near the site of the old log house. The bricks were burned on the site. This house is now occupied by WillArd A. Silvey, a grandson.

Roy Silvey, a son of Joseph, was born in the log house in 1898. He was a small boy when the brick house was built. While playing near the log house he and his sister found some gold coins that had been buried near the chimney, perhaps during the war. Mr. and Mrs. Roy Silvey built a house not far from the old house where they lived. There is a family cemetery north of the home site in the timber pasture on the point of a ridge overlooking Grand River bottoms. This is the final resting place of early members of the family. Also the Ballews and Canterburys.

There was a ford across Grand River northwest of this farm that was used until about 1922 when the river was straightened. There is also a good vein of coal on the farm that was used as blacksmith coal in Chillicothe, Mo. On the bluffs on the west side of the river near the mouth of Locust Creek, is the site of an early French trading post. The Indians caused so much trouble that after a time it was abandoned.

About 1840 the town of Grandville was started here. Later there were two stores, a tobacco factory, and a dress shop. The town never survived due to a cholera outbreak and a bad reputation. A man was murdered there. The town was not a part of the Silvey farm at that time. The farm has been enlarged to more than 1000 acres and is devoted to general farming.

John Silvey (1814-1880), came from Howard County and is buried in the family cemetery. Richard Silvey, stagecoach driver from Chillicothe to Brunswick during the Civil War, is buried in the family cemetery. Joseph W. Silvey (1863-1938) is buried in the Cameron Cemetery; his wife, Weltha Daugherty Silvey (1872-1946), is buried in the Cameron Cemetery.

Roy Silvey, born 1898, was married October 27, 1923, to Bernice Crosley, born 1902. They have three children: Willard, born 1925, is married to Irene Stinson, April, 1948. Children of Willard and I r e e n are, Leonard (1950-1974), drowned in Grand River, and Loyd 1952; Veda, married in 1951 to Wilbur Wilson, Jr., their children are, Kenneth 1952, Everett 1954, Gerald 1956, and Kathryn 1958; Norma, married in 1954 to Robert Damm of Independence, Mo., they have one child, Roxanne, 1961.

Three generations of the Silveys attended the Leaton School. - Roy Silvey


Mrs. Brock Smith

Washington and Hannah Smith purchased 160 acres of land in Livingston County over 100 years ago. They came to this country in a covered wagon with their four surviving children in the year 1859. The family first settled in Grundy County, moving two miles north of the later location of Chula when they purchased a tract of land located in the NW ¼ of Sec. 10, Twp. 59, Rg. 23. The land was sold on October 9, 1867, by the state, at the courthouse door in Chillicothe on a quit claim deed for taxes, interest, and costs of $37.45, owed for the year 1864. According to records furnished on the abstract, this land was forfeited to the state for want of bidders when it sold at the courthouse on the 18th day of November, 1864, for taxes, interest, and costs thereon amounting to the sum of $54.95.

Mr. Smith, born March 25, 1814, and his wife, the former Hannah Ramage, born on June 24, 1816, were reared, and married January 1, 1839, in Belmont County, Ohio. The couple later moved near the town of Antrim, in Guernsey County, Ohio, where all six of their children were born. Two of the children died at an early age. Those coming to Missouri with their parents were, Mary Ewing Smith, John Alexander Smith, and twins, Joseph Washington and Robert Smiley Smith.

The family set up housekeeping in a dwelling on the above land and around 1870, the three sons built the present home for their parents. A landmark of this site is a large "jack" pine tree planted by the mother in the front yard, which is still standing. Washington Smith lived here until his death, February 2, 1892. His widow resided with a son, Robert Smiley Smith and family, until her death on February 6, 1902. Both are buried in the May Cemetery, 21/2 miles southwest of Chula, Livingston County, Mo. After the mother went to live with the son, a grandson, James Smiley and his wife, the former Lillie Ellen Steen Fifer, 1901, Denver, Colo.; James L. Steen, 1902, Cut Bank Mont.; and Lee M. Steen, 1905, Chillicothe, Mo. The parents are buried in Edgewood Cemetery. All generations of the family have been affiliated with the Union Baptist Church organized in 1840, and still active. Lee M. Steen is now a deacon of the church.

The Steen farm consists of 160 acres located near Sturges. It was acquired by Robert M. Steen who, with this wife, migrated from Indiana and settled on an acre tract of land, a part of the following acreage, in 1839. He acquired ownership of this 80-acre tract from the U. S. Government in 1853. The purchase document was signed by President Franklin Pierce. The same year he acquired ownership of an adjoining 80 acres. This was purchased from Eli Murphy who had acquired it from the U. S. Government in 1843. The purchase document was signed by President John Tyler. Robert Steen and family first lived in a log house. He lived here and farmed the land until his death in 1894.

Following this, James Knox Polk Steen acquired ownership. In 1915 he built a square, two-story house at a cost of about $1800. James and Spurge Crowe and Milt Newton were the carpenters. It was lighted by acetylene gas. This house still stands. He and his family lived on and farmed this land until his death in 1922.

Then Lee, his son, acquired ownership. In 1933 he married Opal Benskin, daughter of Charles and Bell Bennett Benskin. Mr. Benskin came to this area from Illinois. They have celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary and now live in Chillicothe.

Lee bought a Russell 20 h.p. steam engine and a saw mill and sawed into lumber some of the timber on the farm. Many large trees remain. He also used the engine for silo filling. 1940-50 he was an earth-moving contractor, running a drag-line and a Caterpillar tractor, at that time the largest made. He built many ponds, levees, roads, basements, and drainage ditches in Livingston and surrounding counties.

A small creek runs through the farm. For a number of years they had a herd of Holstein cattle, now they raise Angus. Lee and Opal now live in a modern, one-story brick home near the old home site. According to tradition, this area was the scene of several skirmishes during the Civil War.

This farm has remained in, been farmed, and well cared for by the Steen family for 123 years.


Mrs. Edith B., Grace, and Calvin Stone

One of the earliest settlers in the vicinity of Utica was John Stone, whose family was of English origin. Early ancestors came from the mother country to Virginia in the eighteenth century. He was born in Fairfield County, Ohio, on November 9, 1805. His father was Thomas Stone from Prince William County, Va., and his mother, formerly Miss Barbara Wise, was born in Maryland. He was the tenth of twelve children. He received a limited education and commenced farming when he was 19 years old at a salary of $13.00 per month. When 22 years of age, he married Miss Susannah Stover, a Virginian by birth.

He came to Utica in August, 1837. Soon after his arrival he joined in the war against the Mormons. In December, 1838, he purchased 80 acres of land, homesteaded by William McCarthy, for $100, which he held until May, 1855, and sold for $400. Then in February, 1864, he purchased 160 acres of land including the 80 acres he had originally bought and sold, and increased his holdings to over 1000 acres.

He was called upon to serve in various public capacities, among which was that of Judge of the County Court.

At the close of the Civil War he retired from active farming and in 1877 deeded part of his land to his children. The remaining land was divided by his heirs after his death. Judge Stone died in 1893 at the age of 88 years, his wife preceding him in 1886. Both were buried in the Stone cemetery west of Utica. He was the father of eight children.

One of them, John Calvin Stone, was born in Utica, Mo., on January 17, 1839. After acquiring a good common schooling he began farming with his father. He took charge of the home farm in the 1860’s. In December, 1877, he was deeded 100 acres by his father and later received additional land when the estate was settled by the heirs. John Calvin Stone, through inheritance and purchase, owned 580 acres of fertile and timber land.

In November, 1866, he married Miss Eliza Harper whose father, John S. Harper, was also a pioneer settler. In March, 1882, he became interested in the mercantile business and for many years operated a general store with Dr. Joseph C. Waters in Utica, and continued to-farm, a portion of his land being rented. He died October 11, 1916, and was buried in the Utica Cemetery beside his wife who had died in 1914. He was the father of three sons and left a farm to each.

William Thomas Stone was born April 29,1871. He attended the Utica school and farmed with his father, taking over the management of the home farm. He married Edith Baltis in 1902. Later he was deeded the home place of 160 acres, and in 1913 he purchased 27 acres of adjoining land which was part of the original Stone property. For 30 years he served as rural mail carrier and supervised his farm, which is now owned by his widow, Edith B. Stone, since his death in August,1953. Two children survive; Grace Stone, a retired school teacher; and Calvin B. Stone, who works for The American Legion with his office at Wadsworth Hospital in Leavenworth, Ks.

The Stone property is good farming land, raising good crops and livestock. It had at one time an extensive apple orchard. Many improvements have been made over the years. The family has always been affiliated with the Democratic Party and the Baptist Church. - Grace Stone

T. J. and Eileen Thomas

On April 11, 1870, Thomas J. Powell, his wife, Jane, and their three children, John, age 5; Alice, age 3, and Mary, age 2 months, left their home in Brecon, South Wales, to make a new home in the United States of America. The voyage from Liverpool to New York was made on the Nebraska steamship, which also used sails when the wind and weather were cooperative. Mr. Powell kept an accurate day-to-day account of the voyage, which is still in the possession of his grandson, T. J. Thomas. There were numerous occasions of rough seas, when the waves would wash overboard and wet them to the skin. They had no clothes to change to nor a fire to warm the children by, The journey was completed in two weeks.

Upon landing in New York they came immediately to Dawn, Mo., as they had relatives in that community. On May 20, 1870, Thomas J. Powell and wife, Jane, purchased 80 acres of land from the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad Company. A two-room house was moved from a neighboring farm to the newly-acquired acreage. Twice a week the Powell children enjoyed watching the six-horse stagecoach go by on the winding road, which followed a ridge a few yards from where the house was located.

On November 30,1872, another daughter, Margaret, was born in their new home in the new land. On June 23, 1876, Mrs. Powell departed from this life. Mr. Powell and his four children continued to live on the original 80 acres, and from time to time another 40 would be added to it. From a 40 acres nearby a larger and newer house was moved along side the original two-room house. At the time of Mr. Powell's death, August 16, 1903, the farm consisted of 240 acres. Half of the acreage was inherited jointly by Alice and Mary Powell. Upon the death of Mary, June 26, 1906, Alice Powell became the sole owner of the 120 acres upon which the original improvements were located.

On August 23, 1906, Alice Powell was united in marriage to Daniel O. Thomas, a widower with four children: David H. Thomas, a retired Presbyterian missionary now residing in Santa Fe, N. M.; Mrs. Ruth Thomas Baxter, who lives with her husband, a retired farmer, in Broomfield, Colo.; Miss Sarah Thomas, a retired schoolteacher, living in Broomfield, also; Mrs. Mary Thomas Bacon, recently widowed) of Osage City, Ks. All grew to maturity on this farm. Daniel 0. Thomas died January 23,1924. His wife, Alice Powell Thomas, died April 4, 1948. Their son, T. J. Thomas, continued to live on the farm. On April 8,1955, he was married to Dorotha Powelson who died June 11, 1963. T. J. Thomas and his daughter, Eileen, are still living on this farm. - Eileen Thomas


Mrs. Arthur (Nellie) Thompson

This farm Is in Sec. 14 -58-24 about two miles northwest of Chillicothe. It was purchased from the government January 27, 1840, by Allen P. Lile and his wife, Mary Cox Lile. She was the daughter of Joseph Cox, who came to Livingston County in 1833. In 1881 it passed to Melinda Lile Thompson, and her husband, John; in 1903, to Allen and John S. Thompson; then to a son, Allen, who was the father of Arthur Thompson; at his death to his wife Nellie, in January, 1976. See family history of Joseph Cox. - Mrs. Franklin Bonderer


Cecil, Jessie and Shirley Transue

My grandfather and grandmother, William and Margaret Transue, came from Pennsylvania to Missouri in the year 1869. They came through in a covered wagon, driving oxen. They settled first in Sec. 17 in Medicine Township, where they lived seven years before buying the present farm in 1876. They gave $11.00 an acre for it.

My grandfather was a carpenter by trade. He built the house that is on the farm today. My grandmother walked and carried a basket of eggs 11 miles to Wheeling to do her grocery shopping. This farm was prairie timber. My grandparents cleared it with axes. My grandmother could use an ax as well as my grandfather. They were clearing one day; came noon. So one of them put his ax in a brush pile, and the other one came along and set the brush pile on fire, and burned the ax. My grandfather was born September 6, 1822, and died November 22, 1893. My grandmother was born March 12, 1825, and died January 20, 1896. They were born in Danville, Pa. My grandparents had eight children, Clint, Rank, John, Isiah, Martha, Bell, Clara, and Ida. The grandparents were buried in Parson Creek Cemetery.

Isiah, son of William Transue, and Jennie Transue, my father and mother, were married in 1896, at which time they bought out the rest of the heirs, and started farming. They had one son, Cecil J. Dad added to the farm as time went, and finally had 360 acres. Isiah was born November 16, 1865, and died November 17, 1943. My mother was born November 4,1873, and died July 1, 1954.

Cecil and Jessie Transue were married October 19, 1921. 1 was an only child so I took over the farm in 1954, and farmed until about 1970, at which time I retired. We had one daughter, Shirley Eileen Transue. She was born February 11, 1928. In 1973 we sold 160 acres to Allen and Kay Tolson, and in 1974 sold 80 acres to Harold and Maxine Drake. As of today, there are 120 acres left on the farm owned by Cecil, Jessie, and Shirley Transue. - Cecil Transue


Buel Trumbo

Thornton Trumbo was born in Virginia in 1817. He married Susan Miller who was born in 1830. To this union four children were born. They came to Missouri in 1861 and lived about five miles northeast of Chillicothe. She died soon after.

In 1863 he purchased 235 acres five miles southeast of Chula for $1.25 per acre. In 1865 he married Martha Pearman Gibson, who was born in 1839 in LaRue County, Ky. She was a widow with four children. To this union were born Charles, Joseph R., Andrew H., and George 0. First they lived in a log cabin. Later they built a two-story frame house. Later he purchased some additional land where there was more timber. He died in 1901. He and his first wife are buried in the Wallace Cemetery. Mrs. Martha Trumbo died in 1915 and is buried in the Parson Creek Cemetery.

Charles Trumbo was born on the farm in 1866. In 1894 he married Sophia J. (Mattie) Reid of Sullivan County. In 1900 they moved to western Oklahoma near Woodward. They lived there two years, then returned to the home place. In 1903 they built a two-story house on the north side of the road, After 57 years of married life, Mrs. Trumbo died in June of 1952. He died in November of the same year. They are buried in the Plainview Cemetery north of Chula.

They were the parents of Emery Trumbo who married Ethel Clingingsmith. They are the parents of twin daughters, Mrs. Lowell Jackson and Mrs. Carroll Surber.

Elba Trumbo, who married Dollie Runyan, has two daughters, John and Phyllis, of Liberty, Mo.

Blanche Trumbo and Buel Trumbo stayed on the home place. She passed away in 1970. Buel was born in 1896, is a World War I veteran, and still makes his home on the family farm.

Three generations of the family have lived on the farm, which is part timber, pasture, and farming ground. Two generations attended Gordonville School.

At the time of the Civil War, soldiers stopped at this home and requested to be fed. The family, fearing the horses would be stolen, hid them in the cornfield. - Buel Trumbo


Mr. and Mrs. Kenneth Walker

Leo Tiberghein, great-grandfather of the present owners, bought 120 acres in Sec. 17, 58-23 on March 3, 1862. He was born in Missouri in 1832. He died in 1908 and was buried in the Tiberghein cemetery on the farm. The farm became the property of his grandson, John Lee Tiberghein (1888-1956), in 1904. Better known as Lee Tiberghein, he married Norma Lucile (Celia) Crumpacker. He was a farmer. In 1931 he was elected Judge of the County Court, western district. He served as Presiding Judge 1935-1942. He also served on the county Selective Service Board for 12 years. He was the father of Ruth Tiberghein who married Kenneth Walker.


Don and Eleanor Ward

Archibald Ward (September 7, 1790 - August 11, 1847), a Kentuckian by birth, of Irish origin, came to Livingston County, Mo., in 1837 from Sangamon County, Ill. He married Caroline Matilda Grayson Webber (March 26, 1800 August 1, 1862) who too was a Kentuckian by birth.

Caroline was descended from a family well known for their services to their country during the American Revolutionary War. (According to stories that have lived through the generations there were Wards, Graysons, and Webbers on the Mayflower.

They brought with them their nine children and located near Chillicothe, Mo. The Wards were prominent members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Archibald was a lover of music and often instructed young people in vocal music, Three of their sons, namely, Fayette Dandridge, Charles William, and Joseph, settled in what is now Cream Ridge Township. A son, Orpheus, lived in the home with his parents. Another son, James Allen, settled in California for a number of years but later returned to Cream Ridge Township, Livingston County, Mo.

Caroline Ward was interested in education and was a leader in the establishment of the Ward School and helped to make it one of the best schools of her generation. She was instrumental in planning the Ward Cemetery. February 7, 1855, Caroline Ward became the founder of the New Providence (Ward) Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Four of the signers of the constitution were Caroline and three of her sons, Orpheus, Fayette Dandridge, and Joseph. Archibald and Caroline Ward and their son, Orpheus (died 1857), are buried in the Macedonia Cemetery. Another son, James Allen, died in 1867 and is among the first to be buried at the Ward Cemetery.

Fayette Dandridge Ward was born in Gallatin County, Ky., February 24, 1826. He was reared on a farm and became a successful farmer and livestock, raiser. His post office address was Farmersville, Mo. On October 20, 1862, he married Emily E. Graves of Kentucky parentage. To this union was born one daughter, Mary Frances (Mrs. James 0. Garr), December 29, 1865. Emily departed this life March 4, 1865 (buried at Macedonia).

October 18, 1867, Fayette Dandridge Ward married Mary E. Minor, daughter of Joel Minor. (Joel Minor formerly of Kentucky moved to Illinois, then to Iowa, and lastly to Cream Ridge Township, Livingston County, Mo., where he staked a claim. Fayette Dandridge and Mary E. Ward are the parents of three children, Robert Donnell, Thirza Jane (Mrs. Joseph H. St. John), and David Lowery.

Fayette Dandridge Ward claimed the land under the Preemption Act of 1841. The first deed was made for 160 acres on October 1, 1856, signed by Franklin Pierce, President of the United States, General Land Office of the United States. It was recorded as Certificate of the Register of the Land Office, Milan, Mo. He was noted as an active member of the New Providence Church and a wide reader of books and newspapers. He was interested in public affairs and community’ improvement. While no political aspirant, he favored the Republican Party.

The second deed was made to Robert Donnell Ward, October 4, 1909. Robert Donnell Ward (September 6, 1869 - March 31, 1948) and Lydia Emeline Hagaman (October 17, 1871 - October 11, 1932) were married January 10, 1898. (Lydia Hagaman was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. C S. Hagaman, who came to Rich Hill Township in 1866).

Their two children are William Clarence and Ralph DeWitt. Like his father he practiced general farming and livestock raising. He was active in church work, serving many years as Sunday School superintendent and teacher of the New Providence Church. He served for years on the Ward School Board. He also served a number of years on the Livingston County Republican Committee.

The third deed was made to William Clarence Ward (birth date December 30, 1900) June 28, 1948. He too has made the homestead his life residence. William Clarence Ward and Eva Duff were married January 26, 1924. They are the parents of one son, William Don (birth date March 6, 1932). Clarence continued practicing general farming and livestock raising in keeping with the present time. Following the family tradition, he was a member of the New Providence Church, serving the church as Sunday School superintendent 19 years, the church having celebrated its centennial (September 19, 1954) during this time. He also served as elder, clerk of the session, and teacher.

The New Providence Church was officially closed in 1960. The Wards transferred their membership to the Chula Presbyterian Church. Clarence’s combined years of service in the two churches are - Sunday School superintendent, 22 years; elder, 37 years; and teacher, over 50 years. He served on the Ward School Board for 19 years, on the Chula Farmers Cooperative as board member and secretary 41 years, and on the Livingston County Republican Committee. He has served Cream Ridge Township as trustee and assessor. His formal education - Chula High School graduate (Class of 1921) and Jackson University of Business.

Eva (Mrs. Clarence Ward) holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education, taught 33 years in Livingston and Carroll Counties, and six years at the Training School for Girls in Chillicothe. Eva Duff Ward is listed in Personalities of the West and Midwest 1970-71-72; Community Leaders and Noteworthy Americans (1973-74); the Bicentennial Community Leaders and Noteworthy Americans; the World Who’s Who of Women; Who’s Who in America; and Dictionary of International Biography.

The fourth deed was made to William Don Ward, August 24, 1974. His parents still reside on the farm, retaining a life interest. William Don Ward and Frances Eleanor Livingston, daughter of Mr. and Mrs Maurice Livingston (lifelong residents of Livingston County), were married at the Liberty Methodist Church August 22, 1954. They have two sons - Robert Dale and Donald Craig.

Don is a graduate of Chillicothe High School (Class of 1949), holds a Bachelor of Science and Master in Education degrees in Agriculture from the University of Missouri. Ho has taught Veterans Agriculture in Chillicothe, Vocational Agriculture in Tina-Avalon School, Carroll County, for six years, and served as principal. For the past eight years he has taught in the Area Vocational-Technical School of Chillicothe.

Don and Eleanor have both been members of the New Providence Church. Don has served as deacon, elder, and Sunday School superintendent. He was graduated from the eighth grade at the Ward School, making the fourth generation to attend it. Robert Dale and Donald Craig were both graduated from the Chillicothe High School, Dale in the Class of 1973, and Craig in 1974. Both boys are continuing their higher education in agriculture and farm mechanics.

On June 15, 1975, Robert Dale Ward married Miss Anita Kay Sharp, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Owen Sharp, Chillicothe, Mo. The wedding of Miss Diane Rene Kehr and Donald Craig Ward will be solemnized June 19, 1976. Diane is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Owen Kehr, Meadville, Mo. - Eva Duff Ward


Norman R. and Randy Ward

Archibald Ward, Kentuckian by birth, was born of Irish origin in 1790. In 1837 he moved to Missouri, settling in Livingston County. He departed this life on earth in 1847. He had brought to Livingston County, a son, Fayette D. Ward, 11 years old at the time. Both Archibald and Fayette D. were members of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. Fayette D. homesteaded present farming land in the year 1855, some 28 years after moving to Missouri with his father. He departed this life in the year 1909 and is at rest in the Ward Cemetery. He spent his entire life on the farm stated above.

David Lowry Ward, one of four children of Fayette D., was born on the original homestead in the year 1876. He spent his entire life on the farm homesteaded by his ancestors. He attended school at the Ward School and served as deacon and elder of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. One morning as a child, David was awakened by his father to see a band of Indians lined up along the trail in the wooded area encircling their home. At this time only a trail ran past the homestead.

Stories have been recalled of hauling and driving livestock to Chula, to be picked up by the railroad, and one complete day to go to Chillicothe to pick up supplies with teams and wagons. David ‘L. helped erect the Ward Community House, which was a favorite meeting place for many years. He built a new home for his family in 1911 and destroyed the old one. A sawmill moved to the farm cut the logs for the new home. David L. departed this life in 1958 and was laid to rest in the Ward Cemetery. The pride and respect of his heritage ran very deep. He took great pride in his livestock and farm.

The only child of David L. Ward, Frank Ward, was born on the original homestead in the year 1901. He spent his teenage years helping his father on the farm, attending Ward School, and later Chula, Mo., School. He worked with the crew laying the first single slab of pavement between Trenton and Chillicothe, and later on Highway 36, driving a Model T dump truck. Now retired, he resides in Kansas City. Visiting his son, Norman, and grandson, Randy, gives him many enjoyable days and many boyhood memories. Frank also was a member of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

Norman, son of Frank Ward, was born August 4, 1930, in the house erected by David D. Ward. Norman is the present owner of the farm. He and his son, Randy (born 1956), now reside in the home constructed by them in 1972 on the original homesteaded land. In 1975 while plowing, the plow was hooked on a sand rock, which was the footing for the fireplace in the original homesteaded house.

We, Norman and Randy, hope that in the year 2076, that our descendants are of the proud nature that we are of our heritage and ancestors. - Norman Ward


Mrs. Clinton (Zeola) Warner

William Warner was born July 20, 1807, in Barks County, Pa., and Mary Ann (Stauffer) Warner, his wife, was born June 30, 1819. They were married in Shelby County, Ind., near Flat Rock. To this union were born 13 children. Henry Clinton Warner, born October 31, 1844, was the fourth child. Emaline (Achenbaugh) Warner was born March 20, 1852. They were married September 2, 1869, in Shelby County, Ind., and moved to Missouri in November of 1869, locating near Ludlow, Missouri. To this union six children were born, Minnie May, Daniel Clinton, Noah Sylvestor, Franklin Newton, Daisy Bell, and Luna Dell.

Franklin Newton Warner married Mary Elizabeth Cain on March 14, 1906, at the bride’s residence in Livingston County near Ludlow, Mo. To this union was born one son, Clinton Alfred Warner, born February 23, 1908. He married Zeola Austin. They did general farming and raised purebred Polled Hereford cattle. Clinton A. Warner passed away August 28, 1975.

The Warner School, which was located on one acre of the Warner farm, was in operation in 1881 and closed in 1942. Earlier it was the Yahns School in another part of District 85. The last three teachers at the Yahns School were Betty (Smith) Wells, Lewis Chapman, and Dick Morgan. The school site was moved to the Henry C. Warner farm in 1881, that it might be more centrally located. Henry Warner’s eldest children, Minnie and Daniel, attended the Yahns School and the four younger children attended the Warner School which was named for Henry C. Warner. The Warner School building still stands and is located two miles west and one-fourth mile north of Ludlow.

Salaries of the school’s early teachers were around $35.00 a month. The school’s first teacher was Dick Morgan. Others were Loll Morgan, Emma Dieterich, Perry Borders, Cora (Shuman) Skinner, and Delbert Culling. There were about 40 pupils enrolled. Some of the early patrons of the school were August Yahns, David Wilson, Alec Beamer, Alfred Hamlin, Sam Berry, Henry Warner, Jess Adams, Billy Dale, and John Jarvis. - Zeola Warner


Dale and Rema Warren

John Harris Warren, 1829-1897, was born in Kentucky. He came to Livingston County in 1848. In 1851 he married Sarah Littrell, 18351875. They were the parents of nine children: James, 1852-1874, he died of typhoid fever; Thomas L., 1857-1927; J. Dillon, 1856-1939; Ellanor, 1858-1939; George, 1861-1926; William, 18661942, Homer, 1870-1932; and twins, 1875, who died in infancy.

Thomas Warren married Lizzie Darling. They were the parents of five children, Roy, Stella, Clinton, Clarence, and Hazel. Clarence married Mabel Hosfield. They were the parents of Wilma and Dale. Dale married Rema Lingard. They were the parents of four children, Tommie, Donald, Connie, and Timmie. The Warrens are mostly Baptists. They are buried in the Wheeling Cemetery.

In 1851 John and Sarah bought land from the U.S. Government, later they bought additional land from the railroad. They had a slave that was a wedding gift from Mr. Warren’s father. They lived in a log house that faced the north and an ox trail that ran between the house and barn. In 1859 they watched the building of the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad near the house. They also witnessed the start and growth of the town of Wheeling. Later, the nearby public road became U. S. Highway 36.

The log house burned and they built a frame house that was lived in until 1909. At that time Thomas Warren built the two-story house that stands on the farm at this time. In’1902, Thomas Warren bought out the other heirs and moved his family to the farm. He died in 1927 and left the farm to his wife, Lizzie, who died in 1936. Clarence acquired the farm, which upon his death in 1971 passed to his wife, Mabel. Clarence lived there all of his life. In 1975 Mabel deeded the farm to her son, Dale.

In the late thirties, the Warren heirs decided to harvest the timber on the farm. Clarence hired men and cut the logs. Delbert Cox of Bogard moved in a sawmill. They put up a tent to live in. They sawed about 200,000 board feet of oak, mostly into bridge plank. Many walnut logs were sold. Then large cottonwood, hickory, and other kinds. This was near Little Parsons Creek. The first tractor on the farm was a 1944 Ford.

The following is the service records of the family: Roy Warren, oldest son of Thomas and Lizzie Warren, WWI, Air Force, eight months in France; Clarence, youngest son of Thomas and Lizzie, WWI, Camp Grant, USA; Dale, son of Clarence and Mabel, U. S. Navy, three years in South Pacific; Tommie, son of Dale and Rema, Air Force 1971-75, U. S. and abroad; Donald, son of Dale and Rema, Air Force 1971-75, U. S. and abroad.

Harold, son of Buel and Lula Narr Warren, lives on a farm near Wheeling. Ralph, son of Buel and Lula, is in business in Chillicothe. John, son of William and Hathe Byrd, lives on a farm near Dawn. - Mabel Warren


Clifford and Lola Webb

Silas Smith came to the United States from Scotland in the early 1800's. He was a sailor. He immigrated to Missouri and bought a mill at Dawn, Mo. He was 50 years of age when he married Salena McCroskie age 16. They had seven children, Mary S., William S., Sara F., Francis A., Lora A., Flora, and Daniel.

In 1866 Silas sold his mill at Dawn and went to his home. He laid down to take a nap. His wife, Salena and one of the sons, went to the barn to do the evening chores and they heard a shot. The son looked out and told his mother that someone shot his dog, naming the fellow as he saw him riding away, and he knew him but we do not know the man's name. When they got to the house they found Silas dead and the houseransacked. The fellow who shot him had looked for the money he had received for the sale of the mill, but Silas had not collected the money that day. Later the man was tried for the murder but was not convicted as there was not much law then. The mattress caught fire because the man was so close to him when he shot him. He and Salena both are buried in the McCroskie Cemetery.

The daughter, Lora, married Joseph Webb. They had three sons, Arlie, Seth, and Buford. Joseph Webb was drowned in a flash flood in 1906. Arlie Webb is the father of Clifford Webb, present owner. He (Arlie) married Josephine Gier. They also had one daughter, Norma, now Mrs. Earl Flamn. Clifford Webb married Lola Eichler. They have four sons, Gary, Leonard, Dwain, and Jack, and one daughter, Mrs. Linda Roberts. - Clifford Webb


Richard L. West and Thelma M. Burgess

The first settler to own a part of this farm was William J. Wallace, whose wife was the former Mary Jane Birch. He and his wife came from Kentucky and settled in the northern part of Medicine Township in 1840. Mr. Wallace' arranged to give 29 acres to his widowed sister, Elizabeth Yates, shortly thereafter, and she and her children lived on this acreage until her death in 1852. During her lifetime she acquired an additional 17 acres from the United States Government by land grant.

Upon the death of Mrs. Yates this land was purchased from her heirs by Chapman Lightner, who had married one of the heirs, Mrs. Yates' daughter, Nancy. In 1853 Chapman Lightner purchased an additional 80 acres which compose this farm as it is today. He came to Livingston County in the year 1839. He was a veteran of the Mexican War (his service record is not available at this writing). During his lifetime he acquired several thousand acres in Linn and Livingston Counties where he and his wife reared nine children. His father was Alec Lightner of Kentucky and later of Illinois, and his mother, Corrina, was a full blood Cherokee.

Upon the death of Chapman Lightner his 126 acres, as well as additional acreage, was given as an inheritance to a son, James Lightner, who resided there until his death in 1937. Mr. Lightner, or 'Uncle Jim’ as he was widely known, was a stockman. He fathered a son by his first wife, Josephine, and five children by his second wife, Jenny Lightner. Upon the deaths of Mr. and Mrs. James Lightner, this particular 126 acres were given as an inheritance to a daughter, Virgie Hurst, and a son, George Lightner.

In 1942 Brown C. Lightner, a brother of James L. Lightner, purchased this farm from his nephew and niece and made this his residence until his death. Mr. Lightner was a horse and mule trader, farmer, and banker. His wife was the former Maggie M. Owens, and they had one child, Flo Ellen, who married John Marvin West, Jr. Upon the death of Mr. Brown Lightner, his daughter received this land as an inheritance. Mr. and Mrs. West spent most of their lives in Chillicothe where they reared three children, Betty Brown, Thelma Marjorie, and Richard Lee.

Upon the death of Mrs. West her children received this land as an inheritance. Mr. and Mrs. West's daughter, Thelma Marjorie, married Glen Burgess in 1936. They made their residence in Springfield, Ill., until Mr. Burgess retired in 1960, whereupon they returned to Chillicothe where they now reside. They reared two children, James C. of Springfield, Ill., and Chapman E. of Spokane, Wash.

Betty Brown West married Ed Seamands of Olathe, Ks., and they currently reside in Overland Park, Ks., with their daughter, Cindy.

Richard Lee West married the former Norma Lee Gaul, and they have one child, Lynda Lee West, of Columbia, Mo. Richard West is a veteran of World War II, having served in the Pacific theatre of operations where he was a member of the 35th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, Fifth Air Force, and was the leading ace of the 35th Front Squadron. He received this nation's 2nd and 3rd highest awards for action against the enemy, the Distinguished Service Cross, and Silver Star in addition to 12 other military citations.

Mr. West and Mrs. Burgess have retained their interest in this farm to the present. The land is currently farmed for row crops, and is managed to provide food and habitat for fish and wildlife, and would be classified as hill land. It is located one-fourth of a mile north of Wallace Cemetery where many members of the previous owners' families are interred. - Richard West


Floyd R. Wilson and Alta L. Wilson

William Burrell Wilson, my great-grandfather, came to Missouri soon after the close of the Civil War in which both he and his brother fought. The Wilson family had a plantation near Blue Field, Va, General Sherman camped his army on this plantation and when they left the soldiers took every hoof and wing of livestock, every ounce of grain, and all the blankets off their beds. There wasn't enough food left in the house for the family's supper. The farm was torn up and neglected so they got a covered wagon, team, and supplies together and started the journey to Missouri. They followed the Kanawa River, reached the Ohio River, boarded a boat and traveled by water to Cincinnati, Ohio, then by land to Livingston County.

Great-grandpa (W. B.) Wilson married a widow, Harriet Elizabeth (Cox) Gibbons, who had two little girls. The state had taken over their land for delinquent taxes. A Certificate of Redemption shows he paid the penalty, interest, and all delinquent taxes, thus redeeming the land.

It wasn't until the little girls reached their legal age and Grandpa gave them their inheritance from their daddy's side that deeds were made up to put the land legally from the Gibbons name into the Wilson name; forty acres each was divided among his five sons and a price was named for each to repay him.

My grandfather, John Isaac Wilson, was one of his sons and had married Ida Young and they had two children, Floyd R. Wilson and Alta Wilson. Grandpa John passed away in 1905 leaving that forty acres to his heirs. It is now owned by Floyd R. Wilson of Kansas City, Mo., and Alta L. Wilson of Mooresville, Mo.

These forty acres are the only ones remaining in the Wilson family of the land that was divided many years ago among the five boys. The land is located in the SE ¼ of the NW ¼ of Sec. 26, Twp. 58, Rg. 25. - Donna Larson, daughter of Floyd R. and Helen (Zullig) Wilson

Clifford and Lola Webb

Silas Smith came to the United States from Scotland in the early 1800's. He was a sailor. He immigrated to Missouri and bought a mill at Dawn, Mo. He was 50 years of age when he married Salena McCroskie age 16. They had seven children, Mary S., William S., Sara F., Francis A., Lora A., Flora, and Daniel.

In 1866 Silas sold his mill at Dawn and went to his home. He laid down to take a nap. His wife, Salena and one of the sons, went to the barn to do the evening chores and they heard a shot. The son looked out and told his mother that someone shot his dog, naming the fellow as he saw him riding away, and he knew him but we do not know the man's name. When they got to the house they found Silas dead and the houseransacked. The fellow who shot him had looked for the money he had received for the sale of the mill, but Silas had not collected the money that day. Later the man was tried for the murder but was not convicted as there was not much law then. The mattress caught fire because the man was so close to him when he shot him. He and Salena both are buried in the McCroskie Cemetery.

The daughter, Lora, married Joseph Webb. They had three sons, Arlie, Seth, and Buford. Joseph Webb was drowned in a flash flood in 1906. Arlie Webb is the father of Clifford Webb, present owner. He (Arlie) married Josephine Gier. They also had one daughter, Norma, now Mrs. Earl Flamn. Clifford Webb married Lola Eichler. They have four sons, Gary, Leonard, Dwain, and Jack, and one daughter, Mrs. Linda Roberts. - Clifford Webb


Richard L. West and Thelma M. Burgess

The first settler to own a part of this farm was William J. Wallace, whose wife was the former Mary Jane Birch. He and his wife came from Kentucky and settled in the northern part of Medicine Township in 1840. Mr. Wallace' arranged to give 29 acres to his widowed sister, Elizabeth Yates, shortly thereafter, and she and her children lived on this acreage until her death in 1852. During her lifetime she acquired an additional 17 acres from the United States Government by land grant.

Upon the death of Mrs. Yates this land was purchased from her heirs by Chapman Lightner, who had married one of the heirs, Mrs. Yates' daughter, Nancy. In 1853 Chapman Lightner purchased an additional 80 acres which compose this farm as it is today. He came to Livingston County in the year 1839. He was a veteran of the Mexican War (his service record is not available at this writing). During his lifetime he acquired several thousand acres in Linn and Livingston Counties where he and his wife reared nine children. His father was Alec Lightner of Kentucky and later of Illinois, and his mother, Corrina, was a full blood Cherokee.

Upon the death of Chapman Lightner his 126 acres, as well as additional acreage, was given as an inheritance to a son, James Lightner, who resided there until his death in 1937. Mr. Lightner, or 'Uncle Jim’ as he was widely known, was a stockman. He fathered a son by his first wife, Josephine, and five children by his second wife, Jenny Lightner. Upon the deaths of Mr. and Mrs. James Lightner, this particular 126 acres were given as an inheritance to a daughter, Virgie Hurst, and a son, George Lightner.

In 1942 Brown C. Lightner, a brother of James L. Lightner, purchased this farm from his nephew and niece and made this his residence until his death. Mr. Lightner was a horse and mule trader, farmer, and banker. His wife was the former Maggie M. Owens, and they had one child, Flo Ellen, who married John Marvin West, Jr. Upon the death of Mr. Brown Lightner, his daughter received this land as an inheritance. Mr. and Mrs. West spent most of their lives in Chillicothe where they reared three children, Betty Brown, Thelma Marjorie, and Richard Lee.

Upon the death of Mrs. West her children received this land as an inheritance. Mr. and Mrs. West's daughter, Thelma Marjorie, married Glen Burgess in 1936. They made their residence in Springfield, Ill., until Mr. Burgess retired in 1960, whereupon they returned to Chillicothe where they now reside. They reared two children, James C. of Springfield, Ill., and Chapman E. of Spokane, Wash.

Betty Brown West married Ed Seamands of Olathe, Ks., and they currently reside in Overland Park, Ks., with their daughter, Cindy.

Richard Lee West married the former Norma Lee Gaul, and they have one child, Lynda Lee West, of Columbia, Mo. Richard West is a veteran of World War II, having served in the Pacific theatre of operations where he was a member of the 35th Fighter Squadron, 8th Fighter Group, Fifth Air Force, and was the leading ace of the 35th Front Squadron. He received this nation's 2nd and 3rd highest awards for action against the enemy, the Distinguished Service Cross, and Silver Star in addition to 12 other military citations.

Mr. West and Mrs. Burgess have retained their interest in this farm to the present. The land is currently farmed for row crops, and is managed to provide food and habitat for fish and wildlife, and would be classified as hill land. It is located one-fourth of a mile north of Wallace Cemetery where many members of the previous owners' families are interred. - Richard West


Floyd R. Wilson and Alta L. Wilson

William Burrell Wilson, my great-grandfather, came to Missouri soon after the close of the Civil War in which both he and his brother fought. The Wilson family had a plantation near Blue Field, Va, General Sherman camped his army on this plantation and when they left the soldiers took every hoof and wing of livestock, every ounce of grain, and all the blankets off their beds. There wasn't enough food left in the house for the family's supper. The farm was torn up and neglected so they got a covered wagon, team, and supplies together and started the journey to Missouri. They followed the Kanawa River, reached the Ohio River, boarded a boat and traveled by water to Cincinnati, Ohio, then by land to Livingston County.

Great-grandpa (W. B.) Wilson married a widow, Harriet Elizabeth (Cox) Gibbons, who had two little girls. The state had taken over their land for delinquent taxes. A Certificate of Redemption shows he paid the penalty, interest, and all delinquent taxes, thus redeeming the land.

It wasn't until the little girls reached their legal age and Grandpa gave them their inheritance from their daddy's side that deeds were made up to put the land legally from the Gibbons name into the Wilson name; forty acres each was divided among his five sons and a price was named for each to repay him.

My grandfather, John Isaac Wilson, was one of his sons and had married Ida Young and they had two children, Floyd R. Wilson and Alta Wilson. Grandpa John passed away in 1905 leaving that forty acres to his heirs. It is now owned by Floyd R. Wilson of Kansas City, Mo., and Alta L. Wilson of Mooresville, Mo.

These forty acres are the only ones remaining in the Wilson family of the land that was divided many years ago among the five boys. The land is located in the SE ¼ of the NW ¼ of Sec. 26, Twp. 58, Rg. 25. - Donna Larson, daughter of Floyd R. and Helen (Zullig) Wilson



Joseph Cox, eldest of six children and the son of Solomon Cox and Martha (or Mary) Dixon, was born on September 13, 1789, in Virginia. From Virginia the family moved to Kentucky about 1807 and then to Ross County, Ohio, where they settled near the town of Chillicothe.

There Joseph married Amy Baker on September 15, 1808, on Amy's sixteenth birthday. Five of their 11 children were born in Ohio. The family then moved to Johnson County (now Lafayette), Mo., the latter part of the year 1818. A short time later they built a raft and floated their possessions across the Missouri River to Bluffton, which was then the county seat of Ray County. Settlements of a permanent nature were made near where Richmond is now.

The story is that a wandering band of Indians came through Ray County and stole one of Joseph's horses. He tracked them into the next county, Livingston, and recovered his horse near Springhill. He was attracted to the rough terrain of that part of the county and liked it so well that he decided to move there. He and his sons went back near the place he had selected and built cabins and soon moved their families.

Solomon, his father, settled on a farm (160 acres) a few miles east of Joseph on Medicine Creek in Rich Hill Township. He operated a mill there which was sold on October 4,1844. Joseph's brothers and sons all settled near their father and grandfather. Joseph Cox was the first settler in what is now Chillicothe Township, Livingston County. History gives the date as 1833.

The first term of County Court was held at the home of Joseph Cox, in Medicine Creek Township, on April 6, 1837. Joseph was appointed of the first three county judges. His son, Solomon, was one of the first road commissioners, and another son, John, was one of the first jury members in the county. Abel, a son, served as County Clerk at one time, and in 1864-65 was Presiding Judge of Livingston County. The first term of Circuit Court was also held at Joseph’s house on July 3, 1837.

When the area became rather thickly populated, Joseph, Amy, their sons, John and Solomon, and their daughter Malinda Cox Shriver and their families set out for Texas in late 1851. They sold their land in Livingston County in September and October of that year. Some of the land was sold to Abel and Isom, other sons of Joseph and Amy.

Joseph Cox was a soldier in the Heatherly and Mormon wars, where he was chosen a commanding officer and given the title of Colonel. He died September 1869, in Lampasas County, Texas, at the age of 80. – Mrs. Franklin Bonderer


John Aleth Lowe

Born in Adams County, Pa., on January 11, 1828, he was the son of Charles Lowe, who came from Wales, and Barbara Sawyer Lowe, who was from Pennsylvania, but was of German origin. In 1830 the family moved to Drake County, Ohio. Here he learned the carpentry trade and taught school. In 1851 he married Mary Smith of Ohio who died in 1871 leaving six children, John H., Mary Jane, David M., Isophene, Angenetta, and William H. In 1872 he married Amelia Robinson of Kentucky. Their children were Lucien, Viola, and Franklin.

He served in the Civil War with the rank of Captain. He was an excellent horseman. After the war in G. A. R. parades he rode his favorite horse "Lightfoot" that carried a Minie ball in his shoulder.

Mr. Lowe had a large home library. He was a widely-known agricultural judge. The farm of 400 acres was five miles north of Chillicothe and a little west. It was bordered on the west by the east fork of the Grand River. Members of the family rest in the Anderson-Smith Cemetery. - Mrs. Harvey T. (Mignon) Sparling


Paris Family

Thomas Paris and his wife, Rebecca Watson Paris, were both born and raised in Ohio, married December 11, 1851, and moved to Illinois in 1852. They resided there two years.

In 1854 they started out in a covered wagon for the State of Kansas. When they got to Missouri near the Grand River near where Chillicothe is now, they found an empty log cabin. Weather was getting cold so they decided to winter there. In the spring they liked it here so well they decided to look around for some hill ground. They bought 120 acres in Blue Mound Township, Sec. 10, Twp. 56, Rg. 24, where they resided until 1870, when they bought land in Sec. 13 and built this house. They raised 11 children: Henry; Mary A. who married George W. Purcell; Louisa who married Joe Purcell and died at the birth of first child; John T., married Lucinda Carr; Jerome, married a neighbor girl raised by Bill McKerlie and wife (Jerome lived to be 102 years old); Phebe, married William Barnes; Elmer, married and went to Kansas; Charley, married Fannie Good and later moved to Oklahoma; Benjamin F., was a soldier and died in Kansas; George, married Loretta Baxter; and William, married Lura Odell, who makes her home in Chillicothe at Susan’s Nursing Home. Most of the children settled in this community, and his grandchildren are scattered over the whole United States. - Mrs. Frankie Jones


Tye Family

Thomas Faulkner Tye was born near Barbersville, Ky., on April 1, 1842, and came to Missouri with his parents in a covered wagon in 1856. They settled near the Livingston-Daviess County line. When the war between the States broke out, he joined the Confederate Army and served as a cavalryman during the war.

He was married January 18,1877 to Miss Nancy Virginia Buchanan, who had come from Taswell, Virginia, in 1870. They bought the farm of 160 acres in March of 1878. It was located in Sampsel Township and Sec. 5, Twp. 58, Rg. 25. They were the parents of nine children, four of whom are still living. He later acquired other acreage in the county. They were members of the Central Chapel Church, a South Methodist Church. He was a member of the Masonic Lodge at Lock Springs, and served many years on the School Board.

He raised mostly Shorthorn cattle, horses, mules, and hogs. Horses were used to do the farm work. Mrs. Tye raised Brown Leghorn chickens and turkeys. The main field crops were corn, wheat, and oats, and were fed to the livestock.

The farm is still owned by a daughter, Maude, and a daughter-in-law, Mrs. Ray (Grace) Tye. Maude lives on the farm and Mrs. Tye lives in Chillicothe. The farm is tended by two grandsons, Tom and Bill Tye. Mrs. Tye passed away November 5,1923, and Mr. Tye passed away January 6,1932. They are buried in the Lock Springs Cemetery. The home was the scene of many family reunions. - Maude Tye



Mrs. S. B. Mumpower, 83 years old, was born in 1854, three miles east of Chillicothe. Her parents were Uriah and Margaret Kent. They came from Pittsburgh, Pa., in 1847 by boat to Brunswick and came overland to Chillicothe. In 1876 she married Stephen Baxter Mumpower. This was the first wedding in Pleasant Grove Church. She recalls making homemade soap. Lye was made by running water over hickory ashes from the stove. Tobacco was a principal crop grown on new ground. First, brush was burned on the ground. Tobacco was started in beds and when grown to proper size was set in fields. It had to be hoed, wormed, and suckered. When mature, it was cut and hung in a barn to dry, then packed in ricks to soften. After this, it was stripped and tied in hands, then it was ready for market. Mr. Mumpower had a large tobacco barn.

Mrs. Alice Kessler, 95 years old, was born in 1842 in Ralls County, Missouri. Her parents, Dr. and Mrs. J. W. Rose, came from Kentucky in 1837. In 1845 they came to Livingston County. In 1867 she married John Kessler. There were no matches and the early settlers brought fire with them which they carefully tended. Occasionally it was necessary to go to the neighbors with an iron kettle and borrow coals. One family, the Duckworths, kept a fire burning for 72 years. They had brought it from Kentucky. Bread was baked on a slab of wood set before the fire or in a covered iron pot set on the coals. Clothes were made from wool. Thread was made from flax which was raised on the farm. Three dyes were possible: oak bark, yellow; walnut bark, brown; and crab apple bark, green. Shoemakers traveled through the county making shoes where needed. Brooms were made of hickory staffs split into long, thin strips at one end.


Mrs. Isabel Raulie, 75 years old, was born in 1862. Her father, Riley Brassfield from Kentucky, settled near Springhill. Her father built a log cabin with a fireplace, one door, and one window into which a block of wood was inserted when light was not needed. There were all kinds of game. We had honey by the barrel taken from bee trees. There was no store nearer than Brunswick. Father would go there every two to three months to get flour, coffee, sugar, and salt. It would take three or four days to make this trip. There was no fruit when they came but plenty of wild grapes, plums, crab apples, and blackberries. We had sorghum and pumpkins. Later we had apples and peaches, which were dried, not canned. I have seen several two-bushel sacks of dried peaches, apples, and a bushel of dried cherries, blackberries, and pears. Father marked off corn ground with a diamond plow. I have dropped corn at the cross rows all day and helped cover it with a hoe. We raised lots of big ears of corn. Father had a big flock of sheep. Mother would spin and weave cloth for our clothes and shirts and for the men’s shirts and trousers. The w o m e n of the neighborhood always looked forward to the good time of helping others do this. My parents told of walking four miles, each carrying a child, to attend protracted meetings that lasted for several weeks. I think Missouri is a grand state and Livingston County is the best.



This section is of men and women who have lived long and useful lives of one hundred years or more. With one, exception they have lived all or a part of their lives in Livingston County. Bill Plummer, of the Constitution-Tribune, interviewed and took pictures of most of them near their one-hundredth birthday. These appeared in the paper and Mrs. J. Roy Jones saved them and supplied them to be used in this book.


N. C. Barnes was born at Avalon on November 30, 1875. He was the son of Andrew Jackson and Margaret Watkins Barnes. He was one of five children. October 1, 1901, he married Lilly Keller of Avalon, moving to Meadville in 1904. Mrs. Barnes died October 29,1961. They were the parents of four children: Mrs. Earl (Ruth) Casida, Madison, Wis.; Ralph Barnes, Meadville; Dr. Irene Taeuber, Hyattsville, Md., who died in 1974; and John Barnes who died in infancy. Six grandchildren: Dr. Earl Casida, Jr., State College, Pa.; Dr. John Casida, Berkley, Cal.; Mrs. Robert (Betty) Damerau, Denver, Colo.; Dr. Richard Taeuber, College Park, Pa.; Dr. Karl Taeuber, Madison, Wis.; and Carroll Barnes of Chillicothe; 14 grandchildren and 1 brother, Steve, Coeur de Alene, Ida. He was a barber until he retired then tended a home orchard (apples and peaches).

He has been mayor of Meadville four times. He was mayor when the town received its first electricity and when the Meadville Chautauqua was renowned. He also served as police judge. He is a member of the United Methodist Church. He has - a good appetite, walks unassisted, and reads the newspaper. He now resides in Chillicothe.


William R. Coleman (From the Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune, November 14, 1974.) Mr. Coleman will be 100 years old Tuesday. He has lived in the Wheeling community practically all of his life. He is in such good health that two weeks ago he climbed a ladder to the top of his chicken house and patched the roof. Every two weeks he rides to Chillicothe with his son, Glenn, to do his shopping. He never makes a list – keeps it all in his head and goes to several stores.

He still drives his own car, a 1949 Chevrolet. He had a little trouble renewing his driver’s license because of his age and agreed not to go on the highway. Now he drives in Wheeling to the post office and grocery store. His first car was a 1920 Model T Ford that cost $735.

Mr. Coleman was a third generation of well-drillers and worked at the profession for 70 years. He did repair work in wells and climbed windmills when he was 90 years old. When he started, well drilling machinery was operated by hand. Four men walked around and around in circles to supply the power. They could drill as much as 80 feet per day.

He enjoys fishing, takes plenty of exercise, eats regular meals, smokes a pipe, and doesn’t worry. He has three sons: Glenn of Chillicothe; Lloyd of Wheeling; and Buel of St. Joseph.


Minnie Parks Howe was born and reared on a farm three miles north of Wheeling, Mo. The farm belonged to the Elizur Jones family who had migrated from Wisconsin to Missouri in covered wagons many years before the Civil War. She attended the New York rural school and was united with the Methodist Episcopal Church North in 1887. In 1892 she was married to Volney Howe, a young farmer in the community, and they resided. on the Lewis Howe farm. Three sons were born, namely, Sterl, Ray, and Cleo. In 1922 they moved to a new home in Wheeling where they resided the rest of their lives. Volney died in 1931. She remained active most of her life and mentally alert to the last.


Thomas Hutchison (1800-1901) was born in Pittsylvania County, Va., the son of John and Jane Hutchison. In 1802 his parents moved to Casey County, Ky., the journey being made by horseback and Thomas was carried on his mother’s lap. He grew up and married Miss Poly Tate of Lincoln County, Ky. The farm they owned had a spring and a salt well on it and was located in the forks of the Green River and Indian Creek. In 1840 the farm was sold to a brother and Thomas came on horseback to northwest Missouri. Here he bought 1200 acres of land mostly in Jackson Township. He brought with him from Kentucky a quantity of bluegrass seed, said to be the first in this county.

Since early in life he has been a member of the church and for more than half a century a deacon. He, with neighbors Perry, Kesler, Ramsey, Davis, Blackburn, and Carson, built the first schoolhouse in Jackson Township. Late known as Blackburn School. He taught a term of school. He served two terms as a county judge. During the Civil War his sympathies were with the South, but he remained at home. After living a long and useful life he passed away in 1901 and was buried in Lilly Grove Cemetery.

A brother, James, was born in 1815 in Casey County, Ky., and died in 1914 at the age of 99 years, 3 months. He was buried in Edgewood Cemetery.



With the mild rays of a February sun slowly, yet surely, forcing the frost from the crisp air, dozens of wagons, carriages, and buggies were moving along the snow-banked highways. Although some moved faster than others, and perhaps a few-the more heavily laden-were making tedious progress, yet in one thing the occupants of those various vehicles were on an equal on that day, February 26, 1900, each was to attend and participate in his first celebration of a man who had lived through an entire century. Nearly all these people were descendants of this grand old gentleman, and not a few had traveled many miles to pay him homage and to have the honor of grasping the hand of a man whose many fruitful years on earth will be a monument more glorious and more lasting than the most durable marble or granite.

On a commanding rise in the beautiful agricultural country, six miles southeast of Jamesport, and well back from the main-traveled road, is an old brick farmhouse. Like the man who caused its erection 54 years ago, it has stood the storms of life, and has given kindly shelter not only to its master and his family, but to many a tired and hungry traveler who was fortunate indeed to be overtaken by nightfall when at its threshold. Soon visitors commence to arrive at this old brick house and enter its almost sacred interior. Some of these, too, are bent with years; some are bearing the first slight marks of time yet walk with the firmness of robust manhood and womanhood, and again there are bright-faced boys and girls and toddling little children among the many visitors. The good old man near the comfortable hearth is glad to greet them all. And when they feel the warm grasp of Thomas Hutchison, the man who on that day has completed a century of living, the generosity of his life can be recognized.

Arriving at manhood’s estate he was married to Miss Poly Tate of Lincoln County, Ky., on November 15,1821, the same year in which Missouri became a state. In 1830 he became a member of the Christian Church and, until old age prevented, was a faithful, zealous laborer in God’s vineyard, He was not a Christian in name only but demonstrated his faith by his works, as many needy and afflicted people could testify.

In 1840 foreign immigrants began to pour into the United States and the country was on what we might call a "generous boom." Thomas Hutchison was undaunted by the situation and he purchased 1200 acres of fertile land in what is now Daviess, Grundy, and Livingston Counties, and in 1841 moved his family to the new home. With his customary ready judgment and insight he brought ample quantities of various seeds from Kentucky, a few of which are raised on the farm every year, and began a successful crop on the farm which has ever since been there.

In 1846 he erected a brick house, and although there are many finer ones now, it then surpassed anything of the kind for many miles around, and today stands as firm and solid as it did 54 years ago when first erected.

In 1853 he was elected Judge of the Livingston County Court and the following term was reelected. He was nominated the third time for the same office, but this was during the period when land sharks and their influence predominated in this section of Missouri, and, not wanting honest men in office, as is very often the case today, Mr. Hutchison was defeated.

The saddest blow, perhaps of his life, occurred January 21,1975, when his wife passed to her reward beyond. He is the father of ten children -only three of whom are living -and be it said to their honor, all have succeeded in following the wholesome precepts so long and faithfully adhered to by their venerable father.

During all his remarkable life Thomas Hutchison has never had a law suit.


On last Monday over 150 relatives and friends gathered at the hospitable home of Mr. Hutchison, who lives with his grandson, W. C. Hutchison and estimable wife on the old home place, and celebrated his one hundredth birthday. It was a memorable occasion and the joyous light which brightened the old gentleman’s dimmed eyes told plainer than words that he was happy. The hardihood he exhibited on this occasion was remarkable, and he met this throng, shaking hands with all, with scarcely a perceptible quaver in his voice.

Two of the centenarian’s surviving children were present - Dr. G. W. Hutchison, age 66, and Mrs. Mary Ann Black, age 72, both of this city as unfortunately Thomas Hutchison, Jr., who is 67 years old was ill at the time and unable to participate in the celebration of his beloved father’s 100th birthday.

After nearly all the guests had arrived and were comfortably seated about the spacious old house, the day’s program was begun by all joining in a sacred hymn, led by Miss Fannie Boyle, of this city. Prayer was then offered by Rev. E. Joseph Sarkeys, pastor of the C. P. Church, in this city, and, after another song or two, the guests settled down to reminescent conversation, and reviving recollections of the past until dinner was announced.

A crowd of the old fellows gathered around Uncle Tommy and it did one good to note how they enjoyed talking of the "good old days." There was Uncle Jimmy Hutchison, 85 years of age, Dr. W. E. Dockery, 74, and as good-natured and affable as his distinguished son-the next governor-James Hosman, 73 and in good health. Mild, honest, old "Jim" Francis, 69, and postmaster at Muddy Lane for many years; P. S. Wynn, now of Trenton, 68; James Pearl, 67; Dr. G. W. Hutchison, 66; James P. Hutchison, also 66; Dan M. Kesler, 64; and numerous others farther down toward the dawn of life. We wish it had been possible to have recorded that entire conversation and to be able to give it now to our readers just as it occurred there. Then, too, there were relatives present who had not seen each other for years, and many laughing babies who must needs be "introduced" to their uncles, aunts, cousins, etc., which caused time to fairly fly.

Dinner was announced at 11:30, the tables accommodating 22 people at one time. The older people were served first, and so on, respective of age, until the appetites of the entire company were amply satisfied. There isn’t a bit of use in the world for us to begin to tell what was there to eat. During the time we were in the dining room (and that was, needless to remark, quite a while), we saw everything good to eat which surely took many hours to prepare.

Possibly the time was after 2 o’clock when dinner was finally over, and after some very pleasing violin and guitar music by different musicians present, the photographers were given a chance and a number of pictures were taken, two very interesting of which was that of Thomas and James Hutchison and one representing five generations, the subjects of which were Uncle Tommy Hutchison, his daughter, Mrs. Polly Ann Black, his grandson, James Black, his great-granddaughter, Mrs. Dr. Girdner, and his great-great-grandson, Master Flavel Girdner.

Gathering in the house once more another sacred hymn was sung, followed by short, though appropriate addresses, by Dr. Dockery, James Francis, James Hosman, W. M. Witten, and Dr. G. D. Hutchison. Another song, a prayer by P. H. Lilly, another song, and then the benediction was pronounced by Dr. Dockery, closing the celebration of the 100th birthday of Thomas Hutchison.


Mr. Hutchison was seven years old when the first steamboat voyage was made; was 13 when Commodore Perry gained his great naval victory over the British on Lake Erie; was 14 when the first printing press was invented; and 15 when the two great battles of Waterloo and New Orleans were fought, one a victory, the other a defeat for the English; and was 28 when the first passenger railroad was constructed in the United States. He was 35 years old when Morse invented the telegraph and has lived long enough to see wireless telegraphy in practical use. He was 46 when the war with Mexico began, and the many changes and improvements which have taken place while this good old man has been on earth are almost innumerable.

"Uncle Billy" Witten, of Trenton, was there. He came early and when he arrived he wore a broad smile which) we do not think, ever left his face during the entire day. Mr. Witten presented Uncle Tommy with one of those old-time silk bandana handkerchiefs, and by the way there is quite a bit of history connected with this handkerchief. Mr. Witten looked all over Trenton without finding it, and then wrote to his son-in-law who is connected with a large wholesale house in St. Louis. The son-in-law, being unable to find anything of the kind in his house, was told by "Uncle Billy" to "hunt St. Louis over," as the article must be had, and it was at last found. Mr. Hutchison was very pleased with the gift. Mr. Hutchison sleeps on a bed, which is now 135 years old. Another interesting thing was a copy book which the old gentleman used when ‘readin,’ ‘ritin,’ and ‘rithmetic’ were the essen tials in education. The writing therein was done, of course, with a quill pen.

NATURAL GAS was the only newspaper represented at this celebrated occasion, but its representative telephoned details of the event to the Chillicothe papers during the day. There is nothing too good or too difficult to obtain for NATURAL GAS readers.

The editor of this paper is under obligations to Misses Fannie Boyle and Etta Hutchison for making him "feel at home" during the dinner hour. Photographer Tomas also desires to tender his thanks.

Uncle Tommy’s daily walk, when the weather is favorable, is to a feed lot south of his house and return. It is located about one quarter of a mile from the house. - Mildred Hutchison & Roy Hicklin


Ed Jones

We borrow this gentleman from an adjoining county.

After observing his 100th birthday in April, 1975, Ed Jones of Brookfield, Mo., kept more than 25 lawns mowed through the summer.

"I’ve worked all my life," says the retired farmer. "I’m not satisfied unless I’m doing something."

Born April 29, 1875, near Winigan, Mo., Jones spent most of his life on farms in that section of the Show-Me State. He lived on a farm north of Brookfield for nearly 40 years prior to retirement in 1956 at age 81.

"I was an MFA member for about 20 years," Jones notes. "I was among the first members of the Farmers Exchange when it was organized here in Brookfield."

After moving to town, Jones went to work for the community sale barn in Brookfield. He also did chores and various odd jobs around town.

Employment by the sale barn continued for 10 years. "I quit there," Jones relates. "I got too old. I got run over a time or two. And they were afraid I’d get hurt bad."

So at age 91, Jones launched a new career mowing lawns. He began by handling 50 lawns per season. This year, however, he cut back to between 25 and 30. Over the years, Jones has worn out four or five push lawnmowers.

"I never thought I’d like a riding mower," he says. "It looks like to me that they are kind of expensive."

"I mow yards because it gives me some exercise. It also passes away my time and gives me a little pocket change."


Thomas E. Jones was born at Carmarthenshire, South Wales, May 22, 1854, son of Thomas and Ester Evans Jones, He lived there until he was 13. He attended school operated by Lord Carter, who owned the land his father farmed. Tuition was a penny a week. He recalled his early boyhood in a stone house with a straw roof.

The family traveled to market in a two-wheel cart riding over cobblestones of a toll turnpike. In 1867 the father and sons, Thomas and David, sailed from Liverpool to New York. They walked to the Welsh settlement near Dawn. The women of the family came over later. The father bought 120 acres of prairie land. Thomas Jones married Ida Patrick in 1893. They farmed northeast of Dawn until he retired in 1910 and moved to Chillicothe. His secret of long life was to laugh and be happy. He died July 29, 1958, at the age of 104 years, and is buried in the Christison Cemetery. - Mrs. J. Roy Jones


Sadie Roberts was born July 11, 1872, in Freeport, Ill. November 28, 1894, she married William H. Kimball. They lived in Illinois until moving to Braman, Okla., in 1908. In 1931 they moved to Dunkerton, Iowa. She was active in church and community work and helpful in time of need. She was a farmer’s wife. In 1946 Mr. Kimball passed away. She remained in Iowa until 1951 when she came to Missouri. In 1955 she moved to Chillicothe where the last years of her life were spent. She is survived by one son, Merrill, of Hale, Mo. Also three grandsons and eight great-grandchildren. She was taken to Bolton, Ill., near Freeport, for burial. - M. L. Kimball


Miss Emma Lowry lived most of her life in Wheeling. She had a brother who was a veterinarian and another was an M. D. After celebrating her 103rd birthday she passed away at Ironton, Mo. Burial was in Parson Creek Cemetery.


Mrs. Nettie Lilly was born March 2, 1874, in Sullivan, Ill. She attended county schools, five months in winter and two months in summer. She also attended two years of high school. She taught school, worked in a shoe factory, and worked as a clerk in a store. When in her thirties she married Mr. Lilly in South Dakota. They returned to Illinois and owned and operated a fruit farm. Later they moved to California, then to Chillicothe in 1948. Soon after, Mr. Lilly passed away. They have three living children: Mrs. Rosalie Olive Satterfield, Chicago; Mrs. Mabeline Furman, Branson, Mo.; and Joseph M. Lilly, Kansas City, who attended Chillicothe Business College and married Roberta McCreary of Chillicothe. Mrs. Lilly is a member of the Presbyterian Church.


Jerome Paris (1862-1964). He was born in Missouri in 1862. His father served in the Union Army for 13 months. He remembered seeing his mother throw down the milk buckets and run to meet him when he returned. When he was 21, he went to Ford County, Ks., and homesteaded a quarter section. He was well acquainted with Bat Masterson, the famous lawman of that area. After four years he returned to Missouri and farmed in Blue Mound Township until he retired in 1956. He then went to Albuquerque, N. M., to live with a daughter, Mrs. C. E. Bartlett. He died in February, 1964, and was buried in the Blue Mound Cemetery.


Franklin Webster Rickenbrode was born August 6, 1860, in Clarion County, Pa., the son of Solomon and Mary Lilly Rickenbrode. With his parents he moved to Livingston County in October, 1869. He attended school in Fryberg, Pa., the Kapp School in Fairview Township, the Avalon Academy, and received the Bachelor of Science Degree from Avalon College with the class of 1885.

He married Ann Alina Roberts at Avalon on May 31, 1885. Their married life was spent around and in Avalon, where he was engaged in farming. Mrs. Rickenbrode died on October 21, 1950. After her death, Mr. Rickenbrode continued to live in their farm home. He was a member of the Avalon Presbyterian Church, where he was a Sunday School teacher and for many years was treasurer of that church. After finishing his formal education he taught in the public schools in Fairview Township for three years, and later was president of the Avalon Board of Education.

Mr. Rickenbrode was the first president of the Livingston County Farm Bureau, and, at one time was a member of the State Board of the Missouri Farmers Association. He was one of the organizers of the Avalon Produce Exchange (M.F.A.) and was an organizer of the Producer’s Creamery; he also was the secretary-treasurer of its first board.

His interests were wide; from the Avalon Band and the Avalon College Alumni Association of his young manhood, through an active life working for the cultural advancement of his community. He enjoyed his rather extensive library and the current newspapers and magazines. He had been a subscriber to the National Geographic Magazine since the early 1920’s and had a rather complete file of it at the time of his death. He enjoyed travel, having been in most of the states, and even across the national borders into Canada and Mexico. He was a Republican until 1932 when he changed parties to go along with his political views. He had been an ardent Bull Moose party man and was an admirer of Teddy Roosevelt. He attended the state convention of that group in Saint Louis. He was one of the original stockholders of the Citizens National Bank of Chillicothe.

As he became a nonagenarian, Mr. Rickenbrode became more hard-of-hearing until he was unable to hear the radio, which he had enjoyed since his first crystal set some 40 years before. Also the cataracts on his eyes grew so bad that he could no longer read. He celebrated his hundredth birthday with a dinner in his home in Avalon which had been kept just as he had left it when he moved to Chillicothe to be with his daughter at 818 Locust Street, two or three years before. The dinner was prepared by his daughter-in-law, Mrs. Holton R. Rickenbrode, and only his immediate family and his two grandsons celebrated with him.

After his hundredth birthday, Mr. Rickenbrode seemed to lose interest in life. He died October 19, 1961. He had been preceded in death by his only sister, Mrs. E. A. Zumbro, Riverside, Cal., and his only brother, William A. Rickenbrode, Maryville, Mo. His descendants consist of a son, Holton R. Rickenbrode, Avalon (Route 2, Chillicothe), and a daughter, Miss Francyl Rickenbrode, 1101 Northwood Terrace, and two grandsons, G. Keith Rickenbrode, Roswell, N.M., and Gary H. Rickenbrode, Sikeston, Mo. Each grandson has one daughter and one son. - Francyl Rickenbrode


Martha Ann Mantzey Turner, of German descent, was 100 years old October 24, 1975, being born October 24, 1875, two and one-half miles south of Dawn. Her parents were Gustav Leo and Margaret Johnson Mantzey. She is the seventh of twelve children. Only one other is living, the youngest, Bertha Porter, of Wichita, Ks. As a girl Martha attended the old Stone School south of Dawn which at that time was across the road from the Mantzey farm.

On Christmas Day, 1899, she married Joshua Turner of Hale who was a former teacher of the Stone School. They later resided in Chillicothe and in Kansas City, Ks. They had two children, Raymond and Nellie, both deceased. Mr. Turner died in 1938. Later, Martha returned to Dawn where she made her home with a brother, Charles Mantzey, until 1944. Since then she did housework in homes until she was no longer able. At the present she is a patient at Susan’s Nursing Home in Chillicothe.

During her life she has enjoyed playing the organ, singing hymns, sewing, tatting, memorizing poems and scripture, and reading her Bible. Although she can no longer see to read, she quotes scripture and recites many poems. She says she is very thankful that she memorized so much since she can no longer see well enough to read. - Velma Evans


Mary White, August 12, 1806 to August 10, 1907, was the wife of Marcus White. They took up land in Secs. 26 and 27 of Twp. 58, Rg. 23, in 1848. He was a veteran of the Mormon War at Haun’s Mill.


Luther J. Whited was born in 1868 in Ohio. He was the son of a farmer, carpenter, and shoemaker who served on the Union side in the Civil War. He farmed in Iowa and moved to the Avalon area in 1920. He was one of the first soybean growers in the county. He moved to Blue Mound and operated a general store. During World War II he did not like to be bothered with ration books. When Missouri adopted sales tax with Mill token, he sent them back to Jefferson City and paid the tax himself. He was one of the first to qualify for Social Security as a self-employed person. His great-grandfather lived to be -112 years old.

Mr. Whited says he has smoked, chewed tobacco, and used liquor moderately. He worked hard, never had any debts, and tried to be a friend to everybody. He recalls cutting wood for wood burning locomotives. He belongs to two churches, Ted Armstrong’s World Church of God and Blue Mound Christian Church. He now lives in a mobile home in Linn County near his son and can eat anything. He has five living children, 12 grandchildren, 89 great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild as of July, 1974.




The first homes in this county were log houses. It is reported that one man lived in a hollow tree. The log house was usually of simple design with few doors and windows, lighted by fire or candle, heated by a fireplace (also used for cooking), and water came from a spring.

As sawed lumber became available, frame houses were built. Many early settlers were carpenters and cabinet-makers. Heating and cooking was by and on wood burning stoves, water was from a dug well or cistern, and lighting by kerosene lamps. These were one- and two-story

Around the turn of the century larger and finer homes were erected. They were mostly two-story with L or T design, with a cellar under the back part. They were the homes with the gingerbread ornamentation. Prior to this time a few brick homes were built, some with bricks burned on the scene. Many homes of this type are found along the Missouri River.

Around 1910 a popular type was the square one- and two-story houses, some with a full basement, a pitcher pump, acetylene lights (later Delco), and hot air furnaces. Following this many bungalow-type houses were built.

Through a period of war times, dry years, depression, and exodus from the farms, few houses were built in the county. As conditions improved and older houses needed to be replaced, more modern, ranch-type homes b e c a m e popular. Later building has been of more variety, one and two-story, some split level, and some with one and two-car garages attached or included.

Many old homes in the county have been replaced by mobile homes, and as farms have been enlarged, many older homes have been abandoned. A number of more recent homes throughout the county have been built by people who have full or part-time employment off the farm.


Byrd Home

This house, located one mile west and one-half mile south of Liberty Church, was the home of James and Jane Myles Byrd who came from Greenbriar County, W. Va., before 1870. They were the parents of three sons and four daughters. The house was built between 1870 and 1872. Three daughters died of "consumption" between 1872 and 1876; two of teenage and one twenty-five-year-old, who cared for them. Some said the illness was caused by wet plaster in the house. A married daughter, Virginia Marker, came home to care for her mother, who died in May, 1878. Virginia died in July, 1879,

Paul Byrd, son of James, and his wife, Catherine L. V. Gibbs, were living in the house in 1879 when their first son, Paul J., was very young. An older son, Myles Byrd, was living across the road in 1870. His oldest daughter, Polly, was the wife of Will Bowen and mother of Kate and Buel Byrd (Jerry) Bowen. Another daughter of Myles Byrd, Nora Byrd Myles, is living in Osborne, Ks. She is the only grandchild of James Byrd still living. - Mrs. Roy Shields


Arthur J. Cies Home

The farm, located northwest of Blue Mound in Sec. 27, Twp. 56, Rg. 24, was owned by Jacob S. Burner in 1855. The house was built after the farm was sold to William H. Wolf in 1866. Benjaman Johnson lived here in 1878. In 1879 it was purchased by William L. Harris of Madison County, 111. Relatives of the Harris family visited us a few years ago. They told how their grandparents struggled to survive, taking their clothing down to Clear Creek a half mile away to launder them on the rocks in the creek. Their only food was wild game and wild berries, which they gathered from the woods.


David M. Evans Home

In 1883 the farm was purchased by David M. Evans. Here, he and his large family settled shortly after coming from Wales. The house was only the one-story room and a log hut to the south. The Evans boys slept in the attic above the kitchen, entering the attic by a wooden ladder on the outside of the house. A son, Jim Evans, who had put in his apprentice as a carpenter before leaving Wales, built the two-story part, also the cave, about 1886. He did much building in the community.

David M. Evans died in 1895, but other members of the family lived here for many years. A son, David H. Evans, and family, purchased the farm and moved here in 1921. Arthur J. Cies bought the farm and moved here in the fall of 1946, after returning from military service. The rooms in the house were never changed over the years. They are very small. The siding and awnings were put on by the Cieses. - Mrs. Arthur J. Cies


Groce Home

The house, located one mile east of Dawn, was there when the Louis (Dutch) Johnson family came to Livingston County in 1866. They lived in it until 1872 when the Johnson and Groce families traded farms. It was owned by members of the Groce family until 1936, when it was purchased by Francis Gwin. The front of the house is the original part. The roof line is the same. Walnut sills and lumber in the house were brought from Brunswick before the Civil War. - Mrs. Roy Shields


The Moss Place

Missouri was admitted to the Union in 1821 as a slave state under the Missouri Compromise. At that time the rivers were the principal means of transportation, and most of the population lived in town or cities along the rivers and streams. Many settlers came from Virginia, Tennessee, and Kentucky, which were slave states, so they brought their slaves with them.

About 1831 or 1834 Jesse Nave ventured into the wilderness and built a two-room log house. One room was used for a trading post at what is now called Springhill. At first it was called Navestown, but in 1840 the name changed to Springhill, an appropriate name because the town is located on a hill surrounded by several springs which never freeze or dry up.

In 1838 a party of pioneers from Virginia and Tennessee migrated overland to Grundy County, Mo. In this group were Ruben Moss, his son Robert B. Moss, his daughter-in-law Sarah S. Moss, and his granddaughter Margaret. Sarah’s father and mother, Andrew and Anna Crockett, were also with this group. Robert and Sarah Moss had two more children, Sarah S. and John T., while they lived in Grundy County.

By this time, Springhill was a thriving town with a sawmill sawing lumber and grinding grain, a slaughtering house, tanning yard, blacksmith shop, carding machine, stone mason, tobacco factory, shoe shop, saloon, tailor, novelty works run by horse power where furniture and coffins were made, a shop where they made wagons, a saddle and harness shop, two hotels, three general stores, a drug store, and a doctor’s office. Springhill had a doctor, and a church and, parsonage for the Methodist minister.

Flatboats were used to transport the products of the county, hides, furs, beeswax, and honey, to St. Louis, and bring back merchandise in return. Livestock was also loaded on flatboats and shipped to St. Louis. The boat landing was located about a mile and a half south of the Graham’s Mill Bridge.

On April 14, 1842, Samuel B. Campbell and Elizabeth, his wife, filed a Certificate of Register at the Land Office in Lexington, Mo., for land in Sec. 31, Twp. 59, Rg. 24. The deed, or patent, to the land was granted by the United States and signed by John Tyler, President, on May 1, 1843. The original deed, which we called a sheepskin, is in the possession of our family.

Samuel B. and Elizabeth Campell sold seven acres across the southwest corner of their original land grant to Robert B. Moss. This was known as the East, or Moss, Addition to Springhill.

On March 15, 1843, Samuel and Elizabeth Campbell sold 168 acres to Andrew and Anna Crockett because the Campbells were unable to "prove up," a term used in meeting Government requirements on homesteads. Later, the Crocketts deeded the 168 acres to their daughter, Sarah S. Moss. The cost - $1.00, natural love and affection." They also gave her some slaves.

The Campbells had built a large log house on this land. My grandfather, Robert B. Moss, was a Justice of the Peace, and a schoolteacher. As a child I remember older people who came to visit my father saying, "All the education I ever got was right there- in that log house."

People in both The North and The South were very concerned about slavery. My grandfather was an abolitionist, so my grandmother sold two of the slaves which had been given to her by her parents, and freed the rest. With the money she received for the slaves, she had a colonial house built, about eight feet south of the log house. White oak logs were laid on the ground and an oak framework was built on them. The outside was covered with walnut weather-boarding, and the inside was finished with walnut ceiling boards and walnut doors and woodwork. The roof was made of clapboards nailed to sheeting.

Springhill was laid out in blocks and lots, part of which were in front of the house. So my grandmother Moss bought the land in front of the house, about three acres.

Most farmers raised sheep. A spinning wheel and loom were a part of every household. Woolen cloth and linsey, which was made from flax, were used to make the clothing. Sometimes leather was used, which was made from hides which were plentiful. My Grandmother Moss carded the wool, then spun it and dyed it. She used black for warp, and using the colors brown, red, blue, green, and yellow, which she wove into stripes, she made a wool carpet for the front room, hall, and stairs of her colonial house.

Seven more children were born to Robert B. and Sarah S. Moss, giving them five boys and five girls in their family.

When the country became involved in the Civil War, Grandmother Moss carded and spun wool, and dyed it red, white, and blue for a flag. Each of the thirteen stripes were hand-sewn together. Thirty-six stars were cut from the white wool and hand-sewn onto the blue field. This flag was used by the local militia, of which her oldest son, John, was captain. There was not much fighting in Livingston County, mostly skirmishes with bushwhackers. This flag measured 9 x 5 ½ feet, and is still in our family.

My father, Marshal A. Moss, was born in 1850. Grandfather Moss died in 1872 and Grandmother Moss in 1881. My father and the second Moss daughter, Sarah, remained on the home place. As the other children grew up and left home, they sold their interests to my father and aunt. Then, in February, 1893, my father bought her interest.

My father and his brother, William, had built the barn in 1880. This is a basement barn, built on a hillside, with rock walls for the entire basement, and with basement doors at ground level. The livestock were kept here. Eight by eights were used as sills and studding, on which a double floor was laid. The second floor is built with. a framework of 6x6s pinned together, and 1xl2s on the outside. The floor is wood, with bins for grain and corn cribs. There is a trap door and stairway to the basement. Above the second floor is a hay loft on three sides. Double sliding doors hung on a track at the front of the barn. We drove the team with a wagon-load of hay inside this barn to unload the hay. There is a cupola for ventilation on the ridge of the roof.

In May, 1893, my father and mother, Katherine, were married. I was born May 18, 1894, my brothers, Robert on May 18,1896, and Howard on February 24,1900. By 1910 the log foundation under the house had rotted, so my father had the house raised and a rock foundation laid. New weather-boarding was applied, some new windows installed, and some of the rooms were plastered. Later, they tore down the old log house, and built a kitchen, pantry, and porch to the north.

My father died April 20, 1923, my brother Robert on January 29, 1942, and my mother on October 19,1942. My brother Howard, and his wife, deeded their interest in the homeplace to me on September 14,1943, My husband, Henry W. Linhart, and I, with our daughter, Leanna, moved into the house in September, 1943. I had some repair work done, and some improvements made, including an oak floor laid, and walls plastered.

We had a spring dug out and walled up, and a water system installed which included laying 283 feet of pipe to pressure tanks, which provided running water in all buildings. The house is now 116 years old, and the barn is 96 years old.

This place was sold to Charles Ray and Johnnie Zullig in 1952. - Lena Moss Linhart

March 15, 1843 -- Andrew and Anna Crockett

August 31, 1859 -- Sarah S. Crockett Moss, daughter

February, 1893 -- Marshal A. Moss, son

September 14, 1943 -- Lena Moss Linhart, daughter

1952 -- Sold to Charles Ray and Johnnie Zullig

Charles Ray Zullig and his wife, Mary Emma, moved into the Moss house on March 1, 1955. Four sons and one daughter were born: Larry Joe on November 16, 1955; Marcia Ann on August 28, 1957; Bruce Ray on November 9,1964; Mark Phillip on July 23, 1969; and Gregory Lee on February 23, 1971.

Very soon after they moved there, the kitchen addition was painted on the outside. Later, the old siding and front porch were torn off and new boxing and weatherboarding were put on. New windows were also added. In 1964 the inside of the house was made modern. These improvements included a bathroom, kitchen cabinets, and hot water. All of the interior was made new. Cement porches and walks were also constructed. In a few years the old roof was torn off and replaced by a new one. All these things they have added to make their one-hundred-year-old home modern. - Charles Ray Zullig


Paris Home

This house was two miles north of Blue Mound. It was built in 1870, by Thomas Paris and his wife Rebecca Watson Paris. They raised 11 children here. In 1914 Charles B. Jones and Ethel Perryman Jones bought the farm. It was their home for 54 years. In 1969 it became the property of Mr. and Mrs. Harvey Harrington, a grandson. It was torn down in February, 1976, being replaced by a new home. Three families occupied this house in 106 years. - Mrs. Frankie Jones


Jesse Nave, the founder of Springhill was born in 1797, and Isabella (Dixon) Nave was born in 1802. They came from their native State of Tennessee in the year 1831 to an unknown spot in the wilderness and were the first settlers and promoters of a trading post in all this part of north Missouri. They erected a double log cabin for a home and later opened a store for the sale of merchandise. This settlement was called "Naves Town." They found an abundance of timberland, game, and springs, three things considered at that time indispensable to mankind. The first resource could be cultivated and made to yield bread. The second could be shot and made to furnish meat, and the last could be walled in and made to supply drink. This country was called a hunter’s paradise.

There were panthers, timber wolves, bear, deer, and other animals for food Bees were plentiful in the woods and tall grasses from which they got honey and beeswax. The community was orderly and friendly. Every man regarded his neighbor as his brother - no tale bearing, no gossip. They were careful what they said of their fellow man.

In 1838 the county court received $603.00 in cash. This was the county’s share of a fund from the state for the construction of roads and bridges. Jesse Nave was one of eight men the money was loaned to, with two securities required on each note. Borrowers stood by each other. No outsiders were admitted. Jesse Nave borrowed $100.00.

An election in Naves Town, August, 1838, changed "Indian Creek" to Jackson Township. In 1840 "Naves Town" was changed to Springhill because the town was surrounded by several springs that never froze or dried up.

Along about this time the first courthouse was built in Livingston County. The first bridge across the East Grand River was completed in the winter of 1843 at Graham’s Mill; Jesse Nave was one of the contractors. At the Presidential election of 1840 he served as one of the judges in Jackson Township. He remained prominent in the pioneer events of the country.

About 1840 the Methodist people of the village of Springhill wished to erect a Methodist Church. Trustees and stewards were chosen at a camp meeting. This was an open air meeting around a campfire. Finally they bargained a plot of ground from James and Lucy Nave to build a church house. They paid $25.00 for the plot where the church now stands. It cost very little as a result of the materials and labor donated by the townspeople. During the Civil War Union soldiers were quartered in the church house. One night the church burned. No one really knew the origin of the fire, but it was blamed on the bushwhackers, who lived around the country.

Church services were held in the schoolhouse for 13 years following the church fire. The schoolhouse was located on the south corner of the Marsh Moss place. At this time a new church building had been built, and it is still standing. The church was active all through the early 1900’s. By 1966 the membership had dwindled away and its doors were closed.

Springhill was regularly laid out and named in April, 1848, on the northeast quarter of Sec. 6, Twp. 58, Rg. 24. The plot is at a 38-degree angle from a north and south line.

This spot in the wilderness where the double log cabin was erected is the north central part of Sec. 6, Twp. 58, Rg. 24, which is on the hill southwest from the present home of Johnnie and Opal (Hutchison) Zullig. This home, which is over a century old, was first owned by Mrs. Zullig’s grandparents, Henry and Sarah Nave Hutchison, then by uncles William and George Hutchison, later by Opal’s parents, Charley B. and Jane New Hutchison, and is now owned by Johnnie R. and Opal Hutchison Zullig, a great-granddaughter of the founder of Springhill, Jesse Nave. This land, which is now adjacent to Route A, a blacktop in Jackson Township, is well situated and in good cultivation. There is some pasture land with springs that never freeze or dry up, which furnish an abundant supply of water for the cattle Mr. Zullig raises on his farm. In earlier days this spring supplied water for a tannery.

In 1848 Isabella, (wife of Jesse Nave and daughter of "Colonel" Joseph Dixon of Tennessee) died at the age of 46 years and is buried in the Springhill Cemetery. In 1849 Jesse Nave went to California where he died in 1850 at the age of 53 years. They were the parents of seven children: James; Nancy, who married James Pepper; Mary, crippled, in a wheel chair; Sarah, wife of Henry Hutchison; George; Jesse, now in Oregon; and Isabella, wife of William Sterling. Sarah and Henry were the parents of Charley B. Hutchison. William and George Hutchison, uncles of Opal Hutchison Zullig, are buried in Mt. Pleasant Cemetery, located northwest of Chillicothe.

By 1859 Springhill had become a place of considerable importance and at one time considered a better town than Chillicothe. Springhill had a good trading post, excellent stores, a tannery, a pork packing establishment, and a complement of shops. About 250 families and over 35 businesses were located here. The building of the Hannibal Railroad, which gave new life and prosperity to Chillicothe, and Utica, greatly injured Springhill. The Civil War, which came two years later (1861-1865), almost destroyed it.

Johnnie R. and Opal Hutchison Zullig moved to their present home in Springhill on March 1, 1937. They are the parents of Doris M., Charles R., and John M. Doris, born March 11, 1931, is the wife of Maurice W. Breeden, and they now live on a farm northeast of Chillicothe in Rich Hill Township. Charles, born March 12, 1932, is the husband of Mary E. Gaston, and they now live on what was known as "The Moss Place" in Springhill, which is over 100 years old. John, born September 14,1937, is the husband of Shelby J. Murry, and they reside in Odessa, Missouri.

The 100-year-old home of Johnnie and Opal Hutchison Zullig is located at the southwest corner of NW ¼, NW ¼ end of Sec. 6, Twp. 58, Rg. 24, which consists of Lots 5, 6, 7, and 8, Block 3, in the original survey of the Village of Springhill. The abstract of the title is dated March 2, 1854. Since the Zullig’s have owned the home, it has been completely modernized, along with adding a basement and an addition to the back of the house. -Johnnie and Opal Zullig




Included in the business of this firm is agricultural affairs of Livingston County. Members of the firm have also owned farm land in the county. In 1876 Lewis A. Chapman opened a law office in Chillicothe. He was born in 1852 in Rappahannock County, Virginia. His parents were John and Jemima (Nolen) Chapman, who came to this county in 1856. The mother’s parents came in 1855. They farmed and operated a store at Utica. John Chapman was a cabinetmaker. He died of cholera in 1867. The son’s early schooling was limited. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1870. Being too young to practice, he taught school for several years. He was one of the organizers of the Citizens National Bank. He served as City Attorney, City Councilman, and a member of the school board for a number of years.



William Scruby, born in England in 1827 came with his parents to America in 1841. He lived in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Illinois before coming to Wheeling, Mo., in 1872. Two years later he built the first grain elevator in Wheeling. He also sold farm implements and operated a lumber yard.

Later with his sons he purchased a grain and implement business in Chillicothe. They bought and sold grain, coal, apples, and hickory nuts. Also they handled a complete line of farm machinery, buggies, spring wagons, harness, and windmills. In 1893 they built a building at 508 Washington Street. They discontinued the grain and implement business and in 1915 and since that time have operated as Scruby Hardware, Inc.



The history of Milbank Mills in Chillicothe begins in 1867, when George Milbank came to Chillicothe to found the first merchant mill in the area. However, the company itself traces its beginnings back more than 200 years, to the mid 1700’s, when there was a Milbank Mills operated by earlier ancestors of the Milbank family, at Little Bardfield, in Essex, England. In this country, the Milbank family have established mills in Virginia, and later in Illinois prior to locating in Chillicothe in 1867.

Operations of Milbank Mills in Chillicothe have continued under the Milbank family through four generations. George Milbank was succeeded as president by his son, John Thomas Milbank in 1897. In turn, John Thomas Milbank was succeeded as president by his son, John Palmer Milbank, in 1933; and John Palmer Milbank’s son, Edward Milbank, became president in 1970.

Originally, Milbank Mills was a flour mill with by products being used to manufacture livestock feed.

When it was first founded, the mill provided the first cash market for wheat in the area. There had been some earlier mills in Livingston County, but they had been grist mills which ground wheat into flour and returned the flour to the farmer, keeping a portion for the milling fee. Milbank Mills was established as a merchant mill, which meant that wheat was purchased from farmers for cash, and the flour which the mill produced was sold to others.

The establishment of a ready cash market for wheat greatly fostered its importance in Livingston and surrounding counties. Farmers had a source of cash, which promoted the establishment of other businesses. Markets for Milbank flour ranged as far as Florida, Texas, Nebraska, and Chicago.

The first location of Milbank Mills in Chillicothe was at the corner of Washington and Bryan Streets, where the Taco Tico and Kentucky Fried Chicken buildings now stand. In 1867 this site was a field of oats, outside the city proper. The location was chosen because of a large ravine, which ran through the property. A dam was erected across this ravine, which created a pond, known for many years as the "Mill Pond."

A source of water was important to the operation of the mill, since at that early date there was no city water supply in Chillicothe. The pond water was used to operate a steam engine, which operated the mill.

During one especially dry summer in the 1880’s the mill pond went dry. In order to meet this crisis, water was hauled in large wooden barrels from Grand River, south of Chillicothe, to the mill site, a distance of some three miles, with wagons and teams of horses, and the steam engine was kept running, day and night. The rains came and the crisis passed. We still marvel at the devotion and energy of those early pioneers who kept the mill in operation.

In 1903 the original steam engine was replaced with a new and improved model that had first been exhibited at the St. Louis World’s Fair in that year. After the fair ended the display engine was dismantled and shipped to Chillicothe where it was installed to furnish power for the next 30 years, until it, too, was replaced by a more modern Diesel" engine.

Through the early years the mill pond, in addition to being a source of water, served the community as a swimming hole, fishing hole, and skating rink. There are also recorded instances in which the pond was used as a baptizing site including once on New Year’s Day! The pond was drained in 1914 after a city water supply had been established, and changing community standards came to regard the pond as a liability, breeding mosquitoes, rather than an asset for all to enjoy.

There are a number of historical footnotes concerning the operation of Milbank Mills over the years, which reflect the changing life styles in the area. Originally, light in the mill was furnished by whale oil lamps, which were shallow cups with a handle attached. The cup was filled with whale oil and a burning wick floated on top. It could be carried to different work areas. Later, a small electric generator, driven by the steam engine, was installed to furnish direct current electricity, which was used for lighting only; and still later, alternating current electricity, supplied by the city power plant, was used for both lighting and power in the mill.

The first telephone in Chillicothe was a one-line system, connecting the office at Milbank Mills with the home of George Milbank. The first copying machine in Chillicothe was a hand operated "wet press," manufactured before the turn of the century, which took two hours and a strong arm to produce a copy. The first moisture tester for grain in the area was at Milbank Mills, and required one-half day to test one sample, using a process which boiled the grain in oil. The first dump, for automatic unloading of grain, was a hand-operated wagon hoist, in which a winch was cranked by hand to raise the front wheels of the wagon off the ground. From these and other items used in the early days of the mill, it becomes apparent that many of today’s ideas are not new. The ideas themselves, though have been greatly improved in their application, making them more efficient.

In the 1860’s and 1870’s, Milbank Mills greatly changed agriculture in this area, by providing a cash market for wheat, which encouraged agricultural and commercial growth. This interaction between Milbank Mills and agriculture continued and during the 1930’s and 1940’s a significant agricultural change was made which greatly affected the course of Milbank Mills.

Originally, this area had produced soft wheat, which is used in the manufacture of cake and pastry flours. During the 1930’s and 1940’s the area gradually changed to the production of hard wheat, which is used in the manufacture of flour for bread. However, hard wheat produced in Missouri is generally inferior in its baking qualities to the hard wheat produced in Kansas. In order to produce a quality bread flour, it is necessary to blend Kansas wheat with Missouri wheat. The extra freight involved in the shipment of Kansas wheat gradually made the milling of flour in Livingston County uneconomical.

Since the early days of the mill, animal feeds had been a part of the total business, and this part gradually became more and more important. Finally, in 1960, after 93 years of continuous flour milling operations, a decision was made to halt all flour milling and to concentrate in the production of animal feed. In 1963 an entirely new feed mill, of slip form concrete construction, and equipped with fully automatic machinery, was built in south Chillicothe, at the location of the former Jenkins Hay Rake and Stacker Company. In 1964 the original mill location, which included portions of the original building, was destroyed by fire. Since that time all operations of Milbank Mills have been headquartered at 1 Brunswick Street in south Chillicothe.



In response to a letter mailed to Livingston County farm families and business firms the following made contributions. We hereby thank them for their support:

Anderson’s Service Center Kanan Abstract Co., Inc.
Bacon Sales Co. E. J. Krautmann, D.VM.
Barnes-Baker Motors Livingston County Farm Bureau
Beebe Machine Shop Manning Extension Club
Hugh Campbell Auction Service Mart Super Drug Co., Inc.
Chillicothe Animal Hospital Midwest Concrete-Asphalt Co.
Chillicothe Iron & Steel, Inc. Milbank Mills, Inc.
Chillicothe State Bank MFA Exchange and Plant Foods
Chula Farmers Co-op M.F.A. Oil Co.
Churchill Truck Lines, Inc. Moore Equipment Co.
Citizens National Bank Orscheln Industries
Community Bank Production Credit Association
Cooke Sales & Service Co. Rainbow Extension Club
Courtney-Wood Oil Co. Reeds Seeds, Inc.
Farmers Mutual Insurance Co. Singer Locker Service
Grand River Grain, Inc. Bob Staton Service
Hayes Cattle, Inc. Still’s Digging Service
Hoover Oil Co. Summerville Insurance Agency
Hutchinson-Walker-Turner Insurance & Real Estate T & R Soil Service, Inc.
Industrial Equipment Co. Roy Westfall Lumber Co.
Investors Federal Savings and Loan Association Woods Ford, Inc.
Irvinbilt Company  

Individuals who have contributed:

Mr. and Mrs. T. M. Adams Bob and Linda Kimmis
Marvin Albertson Mr. and Mrs. Donald Kissick
Mr. and Mrs. Amos Anderson Mr. and Mrs. Clem Koenig
Emmett Applebury E. J. Krautmann
Mr. and Mrs. Earl Arr Franklin Lee
Mr. and Mrs. Leroy Arr Jack Lightner
Clarence E. Arthaud Melvin Littrell
Warner Bachman Jim Lowe
Mr. and Mrs. Howard Barnhart Mr. and Mrs. W. W. Lowe
Mr. and Mrs. Carl Bauer Gladys Lucas
Mr. and Mrs. George Bauer Raymond McCrary
Eugene Baxter Mr. and Mrs. Earnest McDonald
Beetsma Farms, Inc. Mr. and Mrs. Wally McGinnis
Bennett Brothers Mr. and Mrs. Marshall Merservey
Earl R. Benskin Mr. and Mrs. Alfred Meyer
Pres and Mary Bills Middleton Farms
Mr. and Mrs. G. G. Bonderer Mr. and Mrs. Edward Milberger
Claude Bosler Mrs. Dowe Miller
Paul Boucher Mr. and Mrs. Ray Mitchell
Mr. and Mrs. Francis Bowes Ora C. Morris, Jr.
Elnora M. Braun Geneva Neis
Mr. and Mrs. H. R. Braun Mr. and Mrs. Marion Nigus
Mr. and Mrs. Maurice Breeden Mr. and Mrs. Lyle Noblitt
Ted Brockhaus John L. Peery
Edward Buckner Mr. and Mrs. A. L. Pfaff
Mr. and Mrs. Louis Byrd Frank Pfaff
Lewis Campbell Mr. and Mrs. Robert Posch
Mr. and Mrs. Gene Carlton Mr. and Mrs. Albert Reeter
J. S. Casebeer Holton R. Rickenbrode
Mr. and Mrs. Bill Christison Mr. and Mrs. Gilbert Riggle
Daniel Coberley George Roberts, Jr.
Ken and Rachel Coburn Wayne Rockhold
Carl Corf Hubert and Mina Russell
Bill Cramer Lawrence J. Saale
Mrs. Eva Cross Mr. and Mrs. Bill Schauer
Kirk Deardorff Mr. and Mrs. George Seiberling
Mr. and Mrs. Merle Doughty Mr. and Mrs. Bob Sherrow
Mr. and Mrs. C. S. Drake Mr. and Mrs. Wilbur E. Singer
Glen I. Drummond Mr. and Mrs. Bill Smith
Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Duncan Paul and Gertrude Smith
Robert A. Fifer Mr. and Mrs. Paul Steele
Donald L. Garr Lee Steen
Mr. and Mrs. George Gilliland M. M. Street
Mr. and Mrs. Walter J. Gooch Mr. and Mrs. Charlie Stedem
Harold B. Gray Gerald Stephens
Mr. and Mrs. Voyle Grothe Willis and Everett Stevenson
Haas Brothers Elmer Stoffregen
Clarence W. Hanson Mr. and Mrs. W. J. Thomas
Harvey Harrington T. J. Thomas
Harry Hayen Ted Thomas
Donald Hendrix Mr. and Mrs. Randal Vardaman
Roy Hicklin Mr. and Mrs. Clarence Ward
George Hightower David N. Walker
Mr. and Mrs. Niles Hill Mr. and Mrs. Harry N. Walker
Mr. and Mrs. Joseph J. Hinnen, Jr. Raymond Walker
L. P. Hopper Harold R. Warren
Anna M. Howe Alva Watson
Mr. and Mrs. Bill Hoyt Mr. and Mrs. Clifford Webb
Evan W. Hutchinson Dale and Marilou Whiteside
Mr. and Mrs. Deane Jacobs Mr. and Mrs. C. William Wilson
Mr. and Mrs. Orville Jacobs Mr. and Mrs. Wisehaupt
Chet James Mr. and Mrs. Ron Wolf
June Duncan Johnson Mr. and Mrs. W. C. Wombles
Mr. and Mrs. Ben W. Jones Johnnie R. Zullig
Mr. and Mrs. David Wendell Jones Raymond Zullig
Fred W. Kerr


Livingston County Agricultural Bicentennial Committee

The following members have served on this committee, meeting every month throughout the past year:

Merle Doughty Darrell Skipper
Leo Hopper Mrs. Maurice Breeden
John Cusick Randal Vardaman
Marion Nigus Richard Hargrave
W. W. Lowe Kenneth Corzette
Bob Kaye Gerald Bonderer
Bill Gutshall Mrs. Paul Steele
Clem Koenig John Yeomans


In addition to the committee and the contributors we wish to give special thanks to the farm families and others for supplying the material for this book. Without their contributions it would not have been possible. We also give special thanks to Mrs. J. Roy (Frankie) Jones, Mrs. Maurice (Doris) Breeden, Darrell Skipper, and Leo Hopper for assembling the material; and to the following for willing assistance: The Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune, Radio Station KCHI, Jean Arthaud, Willa Jane Smith, Graham Alter, Juanita Wombles, Mary Cooper, Kenneth Corzette, Randal Vardaman, Jane Sherrow, Maxine Eckert, Grace Stone, Betty Barrows, Kathy Anderson, Bill Gutshall, Doris Norman, Zeola Warner, Earle Teegarden, Pat Laffey, Roy Hicklin, Mildred Hutchison, Marcia Hoskins, Sam Bowe, Madeline Hawkins, Lee Peniston, Maurice Breeden, Marlene Breeden, Janice Steele, Gerald Bonderer, and Dick Ailor.