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Scharf, J. Thomas. History of Saint Louis City and County, From the Earliest Periods to the Present Day: Including Biographical Sketches of Representative Men. In Two Volumes, Illustrated. Volume II . Philadelphia: Louis H. Everts & Co., 1883. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; proceedings]. Permission: Northern Illinois University
ALTHOUGH the present city of St. Louis was the place where the first settlement in the region was made, other points in the vicinity were settled soon afterward, if not contemporaneously with it. The trading-posts and missionary stations that were first established soon became the nucleuses of agricultural settlements, which gradually extended as the danger from predatory attacks of the savages diminished. The increase of the population was not at first rapid, although the fertile soil gave ample returns for the little labor bestowed on it; there was no near market for the surplus produce, and the ample facilities for transportation to distant markets which now exist were not then dreamed of.
The earliest settlers were French, and although the territory was under the dominion of Spain till the beginning of the present century, the French character of the inhabitants was retained, and the habits and customs of the people were such as they brought with them from their native country, only modified by the different circumstances which here surrounded them.
"At the outset French husbandry 336 was limited to the production of food for home consumption. The farms were small. Near the beginning of the present century a tract of eighty arpens was said to be the
largest inclosed farm in the country. 337 No adjacent villages afforded a market for surplus crops, and the French were too fond of leisure to raise more than was necessary for the satisfaction of their own wants. At first maize was the principal grain crop, but in a few years after the erection of Laclede's water-mill they added wheat to their breadstuffs.
"The costliness of foreign goods, together with the poverty of the people, led to the cultivation of cotton. Most of the inhabitants were clad in homespun garments. Enough cotton was raised to supply the domestic wants of the colony. 338 The cloth woven in their rude looms was indeed coarse, but it was also strong, and answered well the needs of the simple villagers.
"The common vegetables potatoes, beans, peas, turnips, pumpkins, melons, cabbages, and radishes were raised in abundance. The village orchards yielded a partial supply of good apples. Small quantities of tobacco and sugar were also produced. 339
"The early inhabitants devoted themselves more to gardening than to farming. No hay was stacked for domestic animals. The wild prairie grasses were plentiful and nutritious. 340 In winter the horses and cattle were allowed to graze at will on alluvial lands, and they always contrived to keep themselves in good condition. A bountiful supply of beef, 341 poultry, and eggs measurably relieved the early settlers of the irksome labors of agriculture. In a country abounding with game, a race of men naturally fond of hunting would not be apt to devote themselves to the severe and monotonous toils of farming. 342 All the neighboring forests were full of game. Deer have been shot near the site of the Planters' House, in St. Louis City. Every adjacent stream was alive with fish. Chouteau's Pond was a favorite resort for fishing prior to the great flood of 1844. In 1803 beef was worth from two dollars and fifty cents to three dollars a hundred. At the time of the cession some of the French farmers already owned hundreds of cattle and swine. 343
"The farming tools were rough, awkward, and heavy. 344 The plows 345 had wooden furrow-boards, and the snaths were either straight or conveniently bent by the accident of growth. The harness of the ponies was a rude combination of straps and ropes, fastened, in lieu of buckles, with strings of buckskin. The oxen were yoked in a primitive oriental fashion. A strip of wood about three inches square and five feet long was strapped to the horns, and the tongue of the cart was attached to the centre of this yoke. The resistance was encountered with the neck and not with the shoulders. 346 The only article in the country on wheels for long years was a charrette, a primitive cart, constructed of two pieces of scantling some ten or twelve feet long, joined together by two or more cross-pieces, upon one end of which the body of wicker-work was placed, and the front ends rounded to serve as the shafts, and the whole set on the axle-tree of the wheels. Almost the only use they had for it was to haul in their corn and hay to their barns back of the village. It was sometimes used to take ladies and children out riding. All the males and most of the females rode on horseback.
"Laclede brought up his family from Fort Chartres in 1764 in one of these carts, and F. L. Billon rode up in one from Ste. Genevieve in 1818.
"The division of lands, originally derived from the mother-country, was sanctioned by the exigencies of the New World. The system combined convenience of fellowship with facility of defense. Generally it began in the village itself with a patriarchal arrangement of the homestead. Often, in imitation of the old French custom, the abode of the father stood in the centre of the lot, and the cottages of his married children were ranged on either side. Sometimes several generations of descendants were grouped around the patriarchal household. Occasionally the village lot contained one or two acres, but at St. Charles the usual size was one hundred and twenty by one hundred and fifty French feet. Some of these features, so characteristic of most French settlements, were exceptional in St. Louis. In addition to this house-lot, each villager had an equal right in the commons and a proportionate share in the common fields. The latter were lands which the Governor granted to the petitioners for the purpose of tillage. 347 The shape of the tract was long and narrow. The common fields at St. Charles were one arpent, or one hundred and ninety-two and a half feet, in width; and a single lot, measuring one arpent by four, embraced about thirty-four acres. The length of the strip was determined by the number of farmers. Every inhabitant owning a lot in the village was entitled to a section of the common fields proportioned to the size of his family and to his means of cultivation. His tenure was absolute. Invested with the fee-simple, the owner was subject to no restraints in the disposal of his land. The first common fields were adjacent to the village, but as the growth of the place required more land for cultivation other and more remote fields were inclosed.
"The common was also situated conveniently near the village. This tract was not devoted to tillage. It was the public pasture and wood-lot. There were no sub-divisions and no exclusive rights. Its benefits were alike free to all who were entitled to their enjoyment. 348 These grants were sometimes very extensive. The Cahokia common was some three miles long. The Ste. Genevieve common contained about four thousand acres. The St. Louis commons, comprising some half a dozen prairies under distinct names, extended to the common fields of Carondelet. 349 According to the survey of 1806, the whole tract embraced four thousand two hundred and ninety-eight arpens. By the later and probably more exact survey of 1833 the area of the St. Louis commons was four thousand five hundred and ten arpens. The lands thus reserved for tillage and pasturage were inclosed at the public expense, but the tax raised for the purpose of making the fence and keeping it in repair could be paid in manual labor. Every minute detail was regulated by law. 350 As in some of the French villages, even the form of the door-yard and garden was determined by enactment; so the method of building and repairing the fences of the common fields, the penalty for the neglect of these duties or for an encroachment upon the rights of others, and the time for plowing, planting, and harvesting were all prescribed by public ordinance. The system of common fields was well adapted to the circumstances of colonial life. It strengthened a feeling of mutual dependence and social attachments. It also afforded a safeguard against the incursions of the Indians. All the farmers being, by the requirement of law, engaged simultaneously in the cultivation of their adjacent fields, could quickly assist each other in the event of an attack. While the community of interests developed a sense of common brotherhood, the individual ownership of real estate prevented the evils of tenantry and the growth of a landed aristocracy. There could be no distraint of tenants where all alike were landlords."
New County of St. Louis. By an act of the Legislature of Missouri, passed in 1875, the townships of St. Ferdinand, Central, Bonhomme, Meramec, and Carondelet were separated from the city of St. Louis and erected into a county bearing the same name. The act extended the limits of the city, defined
the boundaries or line between the city and county, and made provisions for the organization of the county and the appointment of its first officers. The newly-appointed county judges under the act were Henry L. Sutton, presiding judge; Joseph Conway and James C. Edwards, associates. A meeting of the judges was held at the house of Judge Sutton on the 22d of January, 1877, and the work of organizing the county was entered on. The constitutional oath of office was administered to the justices by Thomas Thomas, notary public, and orders were made that William D. Clayton be appointed clerk of the County Court and ex officio recorder of deeds, also that Alfred Carr be appointed sheriff of the county and ex officio collector. Thomas T. January was appointed county treasurer, and the amount of the bonds of all these officers was prescribed. It was then ordered "that the presiding justice of this court inform the presiding justice of the old County Court that the new county government is now organized in manner as provided by law, and has assumed the control of the affairs of the county of St. Louis in the newly-established limits as fixed and determined by scheme and charter." By another order the presiding justice was directed to surrender to the mayor of the city of St. Louis the county buildings and property belonging to the old county and located within the extended limits of the city, as those limits were fixed by the scheme and charter.
A committee, consisting of the presiding justice, sheriff, and clerk, was appointed to select a suitable place for a temporary county-seat, and Frank J. Bowman was appointed special counsel for the county in all matters pertaining to its organization. It was ordered that the seal of the new county should be in all respects similar to the one previously used by the County Court of St. Louis County, except that the word "new" should be prefixed to the word "county" on such seal. The special counsel was directed to take measures for determining the validity of the new organization, and the police commissioners of the city of St. Louis were requested to continue the police regulations in the county till further arrangements were made. The machinery of the new county government was thus set in motion.
The temporary county-seat was fixed at the Mount Olive House, on the Olive Street Rock road, nine miles from the old court-house. The owner of this house, Samuel Ecker, offered the same, with all the necessary rooms, for the use of the County Court, all the county offices, and, when needed, accommodation for the Circuit and Probate Courts. This offer was accepted, and the first meeting there of the court was held on the 12th of March, 1877. This house had been erected for a summer resort seventeen years previously. It was a fine three-story brick building, containing thirty-seven rooms and a hall forty by forty-four feet, amply capacious for a court-room.
The region was pleasant, and the West End Narrow-Gauge Railroad ran within a mile of the place. Here the county business was transacted till the completion of the buildings at the county-seat. Of this house the St. Louis Republican of April 23, 1878, said,
"The Mount Olive House, the temporary seat of justice for St. Louis County, had every inch of available space occupied yesterday.
"It is questionable whether another public-house of the same size in America was ever put to as many uses in the same space of time six hours as was this house yesterday.
"In this house is located all the county offices inseparable to the municipal government of a county with forty thousand inhabitants, a post-office, a large bar-room, where attorneys do not room, a Circuit Court room, a County Court room, a Probate Court room, private offices, a large printing-office, where the county paper is published, and a number of sleeping-rooms. The house is also serving as a hotel, and to-day some part of it will be used as a jail, where prisoners will be temporarily confined until their cases are called.
"Four different organized bodies the Circuit Court, the County Court, the Probate Court, and the Court of Equalization held sessions and transacted business, notwithstanding that the rain poured down and the wind roared like a tornado."
A commission, consisting of Robert G. Coleman, Thomas J. Sappington, and Wm. M. Henderson, M. D., was appointed to select a suitable place for a permanent county-seat. These commissioners met on the 7th of May, 1877, and agreed that the best interest of the county demanded the location of the county-seat on a plat of ground belonging to William Patrick, lying south of the Olive Street road, and west of the Watson road, at the point where the Signal Service station was previously located.
This selection proved unsatisfactory to the people, and the commissioners annulled it on the plea that they had not qualified before entering on their duties, and that the selection was therefore void. The St. Louis Republican of Sept. 25, 1877, stated,
"The St. Louis commissioners, Messrs. Coleman, Sappington, and Henderson, appointed by the board of freeholders to locate the permanent county-seat for St. Louis County, met yesterday at Mount Olive and agreed upon a location. The proposals offered comprised three from Mr. Clayton, the Mount Olive, Mrs. Patrick's, near Strattman's, Denny, Buntville, Kirkwood, and St. Ferdinand. The commissioners held their meeting in private, and finally settled on what is locally known as the third proposition of Ralph Clayton, comprising one hundred and four acres of ground on the Hanley road. Mrs. Hanley gives four acres and Mr. Clayton one hundred acres. The land has been held at a valuation of three hundred dollars per acre, aggregating
over thirty-one thousand dollars in total value. The Hanley road starts from Barthold's, on the Manchester road, and running north crosses successively the Clayton road, Bonhomme road, Olive Street road, and the St. Charles Rock road. The location as fixed upon by the commissioners is at the junction of the Hanley road, bounding it on the east, and the projected St. Louis Narrow-Gauge Railroad, bounding it on the west, and running through Forest Park, and from which road the St. Louis, Kansas City and Northern Railroad secured the right of way into the Union Depot. The proposed Narrow-Gauge Road is already graded past the newly-located county-seat. The property is about eight and a half miles from the city courthouse, and is accessible from all the thoroughfares in the county, which approach each other as they near the city. The location is about a mile and a quarter southeast of the present temporary county-seat at Mount Olive, the Hanley road passing around Olive Street road a short distance east of Mount Olive. The location is three miles north of Barthold's, and about two miles west of Forest Park, or the city limits."
On the 4th of December, 1877, an election was held to determine the question of location of the county-seat, and the recommendation of the commissioners was indorsed by a small majority.
At a meeting of the County Court, held at Mount Olive, March 4, 1878,
"it was ordered that the commissioner of county-seat proceed at once to have the square or block of ground reserved for county buildings cleared of all timber, brush, stumps, etc., that in his judgment should be removed, preserving all forest-trees that will not obstruct nor be in the way of the construction of said buildings on said square.
"It was ordered further that as soon as the county surveyor has completed an accurate measurement of the grounds and the sub-division of the same, in accordance with the map of plat approved by this court and ordered filed in the county clerk's office, the said commissioner shall immediately cause at least one thousand lithographed copies of the same to be made for distribution, headed with the name of ‘Clayton, St. Louis County Court-House Donation,’ in large letters, with the four avenues bordering the court-house square and inclosing the same named and lettered on said map, as follows, viz.: the one running north and south on the east side of said square shall be named and lettered Central Avenue; the one on the north side of said square, running east and west, named and lettered St. Ferdinand Avenue; the one on the south side of said square, running east and west, named and lettered Carondelet Avenue; the one on the west side of the square shall be named and lettered Meramec Avenue, and the one immediately south of Carondelet Avenue shall be named and lettered Bonhomme Avenue.
"The original of said lithographic plats, with the names of said avenues thereon, shall be matters of record, and all of the before-mentioned avenues are hereby dedicated for public use, together with all other avenues, streets, and alleys shown on said original map or plat as recorded and named by the said commissioner of the county-seat.
"It was further ordered that the avenue running north and south on the western boundary of said plat shall be named and lettered Coleman Avenue.
"The avenue running east and west along the northern boundary on said plat shall be named and lettered Henderson Avenue.
"The avenue running north and south and immediately east of Central Avenue shall be named and lettered St. Louis Avenue.
"And the avenue running with and parallel to the St. Louis County Railroad shall be named and lettered Sappington Avenue.
"All of which are hereby dedicated to public use, together with the other avenues, streets, or alleys marked out and shown upon said plat."
On the 18th of July, 1877, the last act in the separation of the city and county governments was accomplished, and the old County Court adjourned forever. The Board of Finance, consisting of R. C. Allen, justice Sixth District; C. Conrades, justice Fifth District; Henry Overstolz, mayor; E. L. Adreon, comptroller, presented their report. The old court had no objection to interpose, and the warrants were drawn upon the treasurer for the amounts due the city and county respectively.
At this meeting the following was offered by Judge Finney:
"Ordered, That, in pursuance of the provisions of Section 9 of the scheme, the clerk of this court, the county treasurer, and the county auditor be and they are hereby instructed to transfer to the proper officers of the city of St. Louis all records, books, papers, etc., now in the office of this court or under their control.
"And it is further ordered that the furniture, books, and papers in the offices of the county auditor and treasurer and County Court room, and all other property belonging to the former county of St. Louis not heretofore transferred, be and the same are hereby turned over and formally transferred to the city of St. Louis.
"And that the assessor be instructed to transfer to the new County Court all books, plats, etc., now in his possession, and which by the terms of the scheme have become their property."
Judge Allen moved that the seal of the old County Court be turned over to the new County Court, Judge Speck thought there were some objections, but Judge Edwards, of the new County Court, who was present, explained that the transfer would be merely as a piece of property, and it was agreed to.
Judge Finney then offered the following:
"WHEREAS, The Board of Finance appointed under the scheme and charter for the purpose of adjusting the relations between the old county of St. Louis and the city of St. Louis and the new county of St. Louis have this day reported to the court that they have completed their labors, and all appropriate orders having been made and passed; it is therefore
"Ordered, That the functions of this court having ceased and its powers ended, in accordance with the provisions of Section 9 of the scheme, it is hereby adjourned sine die."
The resolution was adopted, the vote being as follows: Ayes, Judges Speck, Heller, Finney, and Conrades; Noes, Judges Allen and Dailey.
The following figures afford a brief summary of the port of the Board of Finance. The funded debt of
the former county, assumed by the city, was declared to be $6,824,000; all other claims against the county, $9065.35. The necessary current expenses of the county prior to Oct. 22, 1876, were $92,575.83, and the receipts from Oct. 21 to May 31, 1877, exclusive of special funds, $547,704.11; total, $640,279.94. To ascertain the divisible balance there must be deducted from this sum as follows: Current expenses and other claims accrued and paid from Oct. 21, 1876, to May 31, 1877, $423,291.07, and amount of outstanding claims, $30,079.92, leaving the balance to be divided $186,908.95. On the basis of the assessed valuation of city and county for 1876, this balance, divided proportionately, gives: City's share, $164,414.30, and the county's share, $22,491.65.
The location of the county-seat at Clayton led to some annoying litigation. An injunction was sought to restrain the county authorities from the erection of buildings there, on the ground that the place had not been legally selected as the county-seat. After due hearing, however, the application for an injunction was refused.
The following extracts from a St. Louis journal 351 shows what were the views entertained by some at the time concerning the separation, and the effect at first on the taxes levied in the new county:
"Our neighbors of the county have good reasons for the congratulations they indulge in over their condition. Their courthouse will not cost them, it is said, over thirty thousand dollars, and they have the means to pay for it already on hand. It and the jail connected with it will furnish ample accommodations for the public business for half a century to come. Clayton is only about eight miles from this city, and will in a year or two be connected with it by a narrow-gauge railroad. The new county possesses many marked advantages, the suburban boundary, twenty-five miles in extent, of a great and growing city, seventy miles of completed railroad, seventy-five miles of gravel and macadamized road, a hundred and twenty-five miles of good common highway with bridges and culverts, a population of forty thousand, and a taxable wealth of over twenty million dollars, and a long water-line formed by three rivers, whose valleys and bluffs afford a fertility of soil and a beauty of scenery which together can hardly be equaled in any similar area in the United States.
"The people of the county have no regrets to waste over separation, even though it has deprived them of the three hundred thousand to three hundred and fifty thousand dollars per annum which the old County Court was accustomed to expend on their roads and bridges. They find that they are able to keep up their highways with one-tenth of this enormous expenditure, while the decided advantages of having control of their own administration are brought out in every day's experience. All things considered, they have made a good beginning in self-government, and if they keep on as they have begun, will have increasing reasons for rejoicing at the severance of a connection which had become injurious to both city and county.
"The St. Louis County Court has fixed the tax levy for county purposes for the present year at thirty-five cents on the one hundred dollars, ten cents for roads and bridges and twenty-five cents for other purposes. This is a reduction of five cents on the levy of last year. The State taxes (for revenue and interest) are forty cents; the total rates, therefore, are seventy-five cents on the one hundred dollars. This, however, does not include the school tax, which is fixed by the district school boards, and varies from twenty-five to fifty cents. The taxable property in the county is twenty-two million dollars. The tax rate fixed upon will therefore yield, theoretically, seventy-seven thousand dollars, of which about twenty-two thousand dollars will go to the maintenance of roads and bridges, and fifty-five thousand dollars for other county purposes.
"Under the old régime the people of the county were accustomed to pay about forty-five cents county tax and seven and one-half cents back tax, making a total of fifty-two and one-half cents on the one hundred dollars. The present rate of thirty-five cents is seventeen and one-half cents less, and this although the new county is engaged in erecting its public buildings."
COUNTY BUILDINGS. John Snyder was appointed superintendent of public buildings, and under his supervision the court-house and jail were erected by Rude and Luke, of St. Louis. The corner-stone was laid on the 9th of May, 1878, and the ceremony was witnessed by more than three thousand people. The Masons of St. Louis had been invited to take charge of the affair.
There were portions of four commanderies of the Templars, in full regalia, commanded by John S. Parsons, Grand Commander. Among them was the committee of Knights Templar of the county, composed of Judge Henderson, T. E. Garrett, and F. V. Westlake; also W. H. Goodin, E. C.; Robert McCulloch, E. C.; Arle De Jong, E. C.; Thomas M. Wannall, P. G. M.; and John A. Sloan, E. C. Among the Masons were Missouri Lodge, No. 1; St. Louis Lodge, No. 20; Kirkwood Lodge, No. 484; Bonhomme Lodge, No. 45; Fenton Lodge, No. 28; Bridgton Lodge, No. 80; Lambskin Lodge, No. 460; Eureka Lodge; and Occidental Lodge, No. 163. The following officers were present: Thomas G. Reddy, G. M. of the State; Joseph B. Austin, G. M.; John W. Luke, D. G. M.; D. N. Burgoyne, S. G. W.; W. H. Stone, J. G. W.; William H. Mayo, G. S.; W. H. Fox, S. G. D.; D. O. Butterfield, J. G. D.; M. Eli, S. G. S.; G. W. Sellers, J. G. S.; John W. Davis, Bearer of Lights; John C. Bloomfield, G. M.; George Thorp, G. Treas.; Thomas H. Benton, P. G. M.; Frederic L. Billon, P. G. T. and S.
On arriving at the ground, Judge J. C. Edwards called the assemblage to order, and nominated Judge Hunton, who was chosen to preside.
Alfred Carr was elected secretary, and then Hon. John F. Darby presented to the secretary an old Bible and asked that an inscription therein be read. It was read, as follows: "In 1830 two young men, George Cornwell and Richard Tunis, came to the State of
Missouri as merchants from Philadelphia. When George Cornwall left home his mother gave him this morocco-bound Bible. He died in St. Louis in 1832, and before he died he gave this Bible to his friend, Richard Tunis, and he, in turn, gave it to John F. Darby, who has had it in his possession forty-six years this 9th day of May, 1878. John F. Darby deposited with his own hands this Bible in the place for the reception of mementoes in this corner-stone of the new court-house of St. Louis County."
It was ordered that the book be so deposited.
The ceremony of laying the corner-stone was then performed, after the ritual of the Masonic order, and a brief address, appropriate to the occasion, referring chiefly to Masonry, was delivered by Thomas G. Reddy, Grand Master, who presided at the ceremonies.
The contents of the box were as follows: 1. Deed of Ralph Clayton to the county for one hundred acres of land. 2. Deed of M. F. Hanley and wife to the county for four acres. 3. Report of the committee which selected the site for county-seat. 4. Order for election under said report. 5. Report of county clerk on said election. 6. Constitution of State Grange. 7. Communication from Grand Master of State Grange with reference to grangers in St. Louis County. 8. First and last copies of the County Mail. 9. List of directors and pupils of Clayton schools. 10. Constitution of State. 11. Scheme and charter. 12. Constitution of Grand Lodge of State of Missouri, A. F. and A. M. 13. Proceedings of Grand Lodge of State in 1877. 14. Two ancient coins, presented by Ralph Clayton. 15. Copies of Republican, Times, and Globe-Democrat. 16. Holy Bible, presented by Mr. Darby. 17. Copy of St. Louis Herald. 18. New silver dollar, with name of Judge J. C. Edwards and wife engraved. 19. Photographs of Judge Edwards and Henry T. Mudd. 20. Contributions from Judge Conway, as follows: one Continental bill for thirty dollars, issued under act of Congress of January, 1799; one bill for a shilling, issued by New Jersey in 1776; one bill for a shilling, issued by Connecticut in 1776; one United States gold quarter of a dollar, a dime, a half-dime, three three-cent pieces and a copper, a lot of stamps. 21. Copy of Declaration of Independence. 22. Two-thirds of a dollar scrip of Aug. 14, 1776, presented by John P. Helfenstein. 23. Copy of Journal of Agriculture. 24, A silver quarter.
After the box was in place, John Studdert, contractor for the masonry, stepped forward and performed the mechanical part of the work.
Addresses were delivered by Judge Hunton, Mr. Eshbaugh, of the State Grange, Patrons of Husbandry, Lieutenant-Governor Brockmeyer, Col. N. Claiborne, R. H. Kern, Gen. Shields, R. Graham Frost, and Judge Edwards. Among those present were noted
Judge W. C. Jones, Judge Charles F. Cady, Lieutenant-Governor Brockmeyer, H. Clay Sexton, George Knapp, Waldo P. Johnson, John G. Kelly, John Knapp, Judge W. W. Edwards, Hon. John F. Darby, Judge James C. Edwards, L. R. Beach, Capt. Conway, John Belleville, James Doyle, Capt. Henry Burgess, Capt, Warren Fox, Capt. William Lee, Judge John F. Farrar, Judge H. L. Sutton, Joseph T. Tatum, Deputy-Marshals Lenori, Coff, Reinstaedtler, Blanchard, and Overbeck, J. R. Claiborne, N. C. Claiborne, Michael Fortin, Aldermen Henry, Barbee, Updike, Crawshaw, and Conrades, Councilmen Campbell and Rude, Dr. Wortman, L. Harrigan, Dr. P. S. Yost, Capt. Joseph A. Brown, A. P. Johnston, Henry Eshbaugh, Rev. Dr. Booth, M. A. Rosenblatt, T. B. Estep, J. M. Loring, S. H. Laflin, Andrew J. Clabby, William Pfister, Erastus Wells, Franklin Utz, Eugene Streble, Nicholas Bell, Col. Butler, Charles Costello, Joseph L. Hyatt, A. W. Mead, Judge Henderson, T. T. January, W. H. H. Russell, Ashton P. Johnson, William D. Clayton, John McMennamy, Samuel James, Louis Kessler, Dr. William Cousland, Alex. McElhany, Thomas Fitzwilliams, Joseph Maher, M. D. Lewis, Dr. O'Brien, Dr. Isaiah Forbes, Dr. Diggs, Willis Hord, Alfred Carr, Leon De Lisle, William N. Belt, H. B. Belt, Capt. I. M. Mason, Gen. Marmaduke, V. T. Crawford, Charles L. Hunt, Judge Lanham, William Sutton, Charles Heussler, Robert W. Goode, Dr. A. C. Robinson, T. J. Sappington, John I. Martin, W. H. Swift, C. E. Wells, J. C. Marshall, John Finn, Max Gumpert, Judge Wielandy, William Kreiter, Judge Wolff, Judge Walton, William Drake, John W. Drake, John F. Ryan, Thomas J. Henly, R. Molencott, Fred. Huey, Thomas Cleary, Robert McIlvaine, Judge Studt, M. W. Hogan, W. A. Brawner, Henri Chomeau, John A. Massey, Henry T. Mudd, J. P. Thomas, Lyman Thomas, James Hardy, Dr. Henderson, Emit Bessehl, F. D. Turner, D. D. Duncan, Col. Benjamin Emmons, William A. Alexander, William L. Yosti, Albert Matlack.
The court-house was first occupied Dec. 9, 1878. Its size is one hundred and six feet front centre, wings project ten feet, the side-fronts of the end wings are fifty-two feet, and the centre wing is seventy-three feet deep. It has two stories above the basement, which is nine feet in height; the first story has a height of fourteen feet six inches, and the second of seventeen feet six inches. From the ground to the top of the cornice is forty-five feet, and to the top of the dome is one hundred and twenty-five feet. In the basement are rooms for storage and three offices. The first floor is divided into offices and the Probate Court room, and the upper story includes the Circuit and County Court rooms, the offices of the prosecuting attorney and the circuit clerk, the judges' rooms, and the necessary jury-rooms. It is a brick structure, and is tastefully finished.
The jail, which stands near the court-house, is connected with it by a corridor ten feet wide and sixteen feet long. This is also a brick building, two stories in height, thirty-two by thirty-five feet in size. It has two corridors, and the cells are of iron. The cost of the two buildings was thirty-eight thousand dollars.
CIVIL LIST. The officers of St. Louis County since its separation from the city have been:
PRESIDING JUDGES OF COUNTY COURT. Henry L. Sutton, 1877-78; George W. Brouster, 1879-82; William A. Hequembourg, 1883-86.
ASSOCIATE JUDGES. First District, James C. Edwards, 1877-78; Robert C. Schenoko, 1879-80; Fritz Kraut, 1881-84. Second District, Joseph Conway, 1877-78; Francis Rewwe, 1879-82; John A. Shore, 1883-84.
PROBATE JUDGES. James A. Henderson, 1877-82; George W. Brouster, 1883-86.
PROSECUTING ATTORNEYS. Joseph A. Brown, 1877-80; John R. Wairfield, 1881-84.
SHERIFFS. John A. Watson, 1877-80; Robert Schencko, 1881-84.
COUNTY CLERKS. William D. Clayton, 1877-78; E. L. Dosenbach, 1879-86.
CIRCUIT CLERKS. John A. McMinamy, 1877-78; E. H. Lycett, 1879-82; Christian D. Wolff, 1883-86.
ASSESSORS. William F. Pfister, 1877-80; Green Baxter, 1881-82; Francis Rewwe, 1883-84.
TREASURERS. T. T. January, 1877-78; F. A. Heidorn, 1879-82 (died); James C. Edwards, 1882; George H. W. Heidorn, 1883-84.
RECORDERS. William D. Clayton (ex officio), 1877-78; E. L. Dosenbach (ex officio), 1879, until July; William D. Clayton, 1879-80; Francis Ruehl, 1881-86.
SURVEYOR. Henri Chomeau, 1877-84.
COMMISSIONERS OF ROADS AND BRIDGES. John A. Massey, 1877-78; Robert C. Allen, part of 1879, county surveyor since.
SCHOOL COMMISSIONERS. J. R. Evans, 1877-79; J. B. Breier, 1880-84.
The population of St. Louis County, according to the census of 1880, was 31,888. Of this number there were: males, 16,988; females, 14,900; natives, 25,299; foreign-born, 6589; white, 28,008; colored, 3880.
A comparison of the sum of the population in the townships in 1860 with the population of the county in 1880 shows an increase in twenty years of more than fifty per cent.
WEST END NARROW-GAUGE RAILROAD. In 1871, James C. Page and Hon. Erastus Wells conceived the project of building a railroad to their property, five and a half miles distant from the borders of the thickly inhabited part of St. Louis. Others were associated with them, and measures were initiated for the accomplishment of the work; but the charter was found to be defective, and the attempt failed. The project was renewed in 1872, but the panic of 1873 arrested proceedings, which were not again renewed till the summer of 1874. On the 9th of January, 1875, the road was advertised for sale under a deed of trust, and on the 23d of the same month it was reorganized under its present name, with the following directors: Erastus Wells, president; J. Lindenschmit, vice-president; W. J. Lewis, treasurer; J. C. Page, C. D. Blossom, D. K. Furguson, and M. Collins. The work of construction was prosecuted, and on the 11th of June, 1875, the first train passed over the road to Kienlau Avenue, five miles; in October, 1876, it was open to Normandy, eight miles; and on the 1st of October, 1878, the first train ran to Florissant, sixteen miles.
In March, 1879, the road was sold under a deed of trust, and the Missouri Horse Railroad Company became its purchaser. In the same month it was again organized, under the same name, with a capital stock of two hundred thousand dollars and the following directors: Erastus Wells, president; J. R. Lionberger, vice-president; Rolla Wells, superintendent; W. D. Henry, secretary and treasurer; and James Clark.
The total cost of the road has been three hundred thousand dollars, of which less than fifty thousand dollars has been paid for right of way and depot grounds, while the donated way is worth more than five hundred thousand dollars. The road is not now incumbered with a mortgage. Hon. Erastus Wells and Dr. J. C. Page have been active workers in this road from the first.
LACLEDE AND CR&eagrave;VE COEUR LAKE RAILROAD. This company was incorporated Nov. 26, 1880, with a capital stock of two hundred and thirty thousand dollars. The construction of the road, the termini of which are indicated by its title, was commenced immediately after the incorporation of the company, and the first trains
passed over it July 4, 1881. Its total cost was two hundred and eighty thousand dollars. It was leased to and is operated by the Missouri Pacific Railroad Company. The principal business of the road is the conveyance of passengers to and from the pleasure resort at Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake in summer, and the transportation of ice in winter directly from the lake, and in summer from the mammoth ice-houses that have been built on its shore. The directors of this road have been from the time of its incorporation Charles B. Shedd, H. H. Stephens, E. A. Shedd, J. S. Field, and A. B. Corey. E. A. Shedd is president; John S. Field, vice-president; Charles B. Shedd, secretary; and H. A. Stephens, general manager.
The company has expended twenty-five thousand dollars in improving and beautifying the grounds on the east or bluff side of Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake, and the place is now one of the most attractive pleasure resorts in this region. Hotels and further improvements are contemplated, and when these are completed the citizens of St. Louis will enjoy privileges to which they have hitherto been strangers.
On the opposite side of the lake immense ice-houses have been built, and others are in process of construction, for the utilization during the warm season of the ice which forms on the surface of the lake in the winter. This enterprise is conducted by an organization known as the "Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake Ice Company."
ST. LOUIS SEMINARY for young ladies was projected in 1871. Property possessing great natural beauty, valued at ten thousand dollars, was subsequently improved at an expenditure of eleven thousand dollars, and other improvements render its present value twenty-five thousand dollars. The site is a commanding eminence north of the city of St. Louis, three-fourths of a mile from city limits, on the Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific Railway, overlooking the city and the Mississippi River, and is only a few hundred yards from Woodland Station. The location, though so near the city, is remarkably quiet, there being no business houses near, and is surrounded by beautiful suburban homes.
The spacious, well-constructed building is surrounded by a shady lawn of eight acres, tastefully laid out with walks, bordered with flowers and ornamental shrubbery, all conspiring to render the place an attractive home. The large, well-ventilated rooms have all been arranged with a view to health and comfort.
The school is the property of B. T. Blewett, L L. D., and is select in its character, receiving only a limited number of those desiring a high grade of scholarship. Though no sectarian influence is brought to bear upon the pupils, their religious welfare and moral training are most studiously guarded, and every endeavor is made to render the school a Christian home. The limited number allows each pupil to be individualized and to receive that special attention requisite to her culture, affording a great advantage over schools in which large numbers are crowded together. The seminary, up to this period, has sent out only thirteen graduates. The grade of scholarship is designed to be thorough, affording the very best literary advantages. Vocal and instrumental music, painting in oil and water colors, drawing, sketching, and whatever else may be needful in the thorough culture of a young woman, are most carefully attended to in this seminary.
There will soon be added to the accommodations, already inviting, spacious and airy school-rooms, with all the desired appliances. An important feature in this school is that the year opens in September and closes the middle of May, before the enervating heat of summer oppresses, and all the arrangements, as well as the eligibility of the location, contribute to the health and the general welfare of the pupils. The principal has a select library of fifteen hundred volumes, to which the young ladies have access, besides which they have the advantage of the libraries of the city, and the art galleries, museums, lectures, concerts, and other appliances for their culture.
Benjamin Turner Blewett was born in Warren County, Ky., Sept. 17, 1820, and was the eldest son of Edward Blewett, a Kentucky farmer. He early evinced a strong desire for the acquirement of a thorough education, and although his opportunities were few, and the circumstances by which he was surrounded discouraging, yet by the exercise of great energy and indomitable courage he succeeded in overcoming all obstacles and accomplishing his object. At the age of twelve years he spent a winter in teaching the younger members of his father's family, and in his fifteenth year taught some of the children in the neighborhood besides, the fees being allowed him by his father to pay his school expenses for the remaining months of the year. In this way he spent two years, when a larger school was offered him, which he accepted and taught successfully for two years more. He thus amassed a sufficient sum to attend an academy in Bowling Green, Ky., taught by Josiah Pillsberry, to whom he was largely indebted for that thoroughness in scholarship, which has been the key to his success in life. He attended this academy one year, and then accepted the charge of a school, which he conducted successfully for a year. At this time an event occurred which changed his plans for life. While deliberating
whether to read law or to complete his course of study he became convinced of the truth of religion. He now felt it his duty to fit himself for the ministry, and in his twentieth year he entered Georgetown College, Kentucky, which was then under the presidency of Howard Malcom, D.D., one of the most celebrated theologians and scholars of the day. At the close of his sophomore year his means were exhausted; but about this time there occurred a vacancy in the principalship of the academy connected with the college, to which he was appointed on the recommendation of the president and trustees. He discharged the duties of this responsible position satisfactorily for two years, and then re-entered college, and was graduated in 1846. He was at once reappointed principal of the academy, and brought it to a higher state of efficiency and prestige than it had ever attained before. In the mean time he superintended a large Sabbath-school, to which he devoted nearly every Saturday and Sunday, and often several evenings of the week.
Mr. Blewett married in July, 1848, Miss Aris Hedge, of Augusta, Me., and their union has proved an unusually pleasant and happy one. About this time he was solicited to take charge of the High School at Russellville, Ky., which was conducted under the auspices of an association of Baptists. As this opened to him a wider and more independent field of labor, he sent in his resignation to the trustees of Georgetown College, which was very reluctantly accepted, and in January, 1853, removed with his family to Russellville. He entered upon the discharge of his new duties under very discouraging circumstances. The school building was unfinished, having only just been roofed, and was open and surrounded by rubbish. The ten thousand dollars which had been secured for the enterprise having been expended, the structure as it stood was offered him by the trustees, on condition that he finish and furnish it. He was to retain the occupancy of it for five years free of rent, and to conduct it at his own expense for the education of young men. To attempt to do this was considered a rash and almost impossible undertaking, but Mr. Blewett, determined to succeed, at once engaged a contractor to finish the building within a year, at a cost of six thousand dollars, and gave his personal obligation for the money. He spent the year in superintending the structure and soliciting funds for the enterprise in a community which had not been educated to liberality, and which had been thoroughly canvassed before, but by persevering effort the building was finished and furnished at a cost of eight thousand dollars in one year. In January, 1854, the school was formally opened with twenty-five pupils, the fees for the first term barely paying the assistant. Mr. Blewett had now been arduously at work for a year and a half without any remuneration. There was so little faith, even on the part of friends of the enterprise, in its ultimate success that many hesitated to give it their confidence. The school year opened in September with about fifty pupils, which number increased during the year, and at the beginning of the second year it opened with one hundred pupils.
During this year the school was converted into a college, chartered under the name of Bethel College, and Mr. Blewett became its president. The new responsibility, although attended with all the hardships, annoyances, and difficulties incident to enterprises of the kind, was unhesitatingly accepted by Mr. Blewett. The institution was deeply in debt, but Mr. Blewett succeeded in effecting its reorganization and in winning the public favor by means of earnest, patient, and unyielding effort. At this juncture the son of Chief Justice Ewing, of Kentucky, bequeathed to the institution $10,000 in cash and real estate valued at $20,000, on condition that in addition to his $10,000 the trustees raised $30,000. The president went into the field, leaving the management of the college largely to his efficient wife, to whose energy and culture he is greatly indebted for his success, and after eighteen months of patient labor secured the necessary $30,000. In the mean time Chief Justice Ewing died, leaving the college $3000 in cash and real estate valued at $60,000.
At the breaking out of the war in 1861, President Blewett resigned, the college having disbanded, and was thus turned away by the events of the war from a work in which his best energies had been employed. During this period the institution had graduated several young men, who have since filled prominent positions in various professions and industries. The edifice had cost $16,000 (paid for), and $100,000 in endowments had been secured.
Mr. Blewett then went to Augusta, Ky., and took charge of Augusta College, which he conducted with success up to 1871, when he was invited to assume the management of the young ladies' seminary located at Jennings, an inviting suburb of St. Louis. The establishment of this school required energy and patient perseverance, but Mr. Blewett's experience gave him special fitness for the work. All the obstacles which confronted him at first have given way, and after twelve years of earnest labor his school is now a complete success.
In 1875, Mr. Blewett received the following letter, announcing that the honorary degree of L L. D. had been conferred upon him:
"RUSSELLVILLE, KY., June 10, 1875.
"PRESIDENT B. T. BLEWETT:
"Sir, At the annual session of the board of trustees of Bethel College, by authority of its charter and the amendments thereto, the degree of L L. D. was by special order of the board conferred upon you.
"It affords me especial personal gratification, my dear sir, to make this communication. I trust it will refresh memories yet dear to us all.
"Very truly, etc.,
"RAND H. CALDWELL,
"Secretary B. T. B. C.
"Our commencement exercises were far the best since antebellum days, and augur well for our future."
Mr. Blewett has four children, two sons and two daughters. One of his sons is a graduate of Colby University, Maine; the other of Washington University, St. Louis. Both are principals of prominent schools in St. Louis. His daughters are highly cultivated, and assist him in the seminary. Mr. Blewett is in the sixty-third year of his age, still vigorous, and as earnest in his labors as ever. He conducts a private select school of high grade, which is filled with the daughters of representative families, and derives a keen pleasure from devoting his best energies in the evening of his life to the education of young women.
In the vicinity of St. Louis will be found some of the handsomest suburban residences in the country. Among these one of the most noticeable is the country-seat of William L. Black, one of the leading business men of St. Louis.
Carondelet, which took its name from Baron Carondelet, is the southeastern township of St. Louis County. The township of Central and the city of St. Louis bound it on the north, St. Louis and the Mississippi River are east of it, the tortuous Meramec River, which separates it from Jefferson County, forms its southern and southwestern boundary, and a portion of Bonhomme township lies directly west from it. As originally constituted it embraced congressional townships 42, 43, and 44 north, ranges 6 and 7 east; but when the town of Carondelet was organized the northeast corner of the township was taken off, and when the city of Carondelet was absorbed by St. Louis the latter city extended its limits so far as to include a large portion of the township besides.
Gravois Creek drains the northern part of the township, and unites with Des Peres River in South St. Louis, and Mattis Creek, an affluent of Meramec River, is the principal stream in the southern part.
Prior to the commencement of the railroad era highway communication with St. Louis was a matter of the first importance to the farmers, millers, and others in the township, and the county authorities, recognizing this necessity, adopted measures for the establishment and improvement of avenues to and from the city. These roads were either graveled or macadamized, forming what are ordinarily known as rock roads. Such are the Gravois road, which leads to Fenton and Hillsboro', the Lemay, Tesson, Telegraph, Watson, and Denny roads, and others.
The township has railway connection with St. Louis by the Missouri Pacific, which crosses the northwestern corner; by the Carondelet and Kirkwood Branch of the same road, which passes through the northern part, and by the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad, which runs along the shore of the Mississippi River.
The settlement of Carondelet township commenced when the country was under Spanish rule. Farms and stock pastures were developed, and grist-mills and sawmills were established in various parts of the township. Many of the grinding-mills were propelled by horsepower, and a large portion of these were treadmills.
Among the early settlers 353 were De Lor, Sappington, Mackay, the Pines, Musick, Long, Wells, St. John, Bowles, Parke, Barada, Guion, Le Brond, Tesson, soon followed by the McCormicks, Hunt, Dent, Cromwell, Smith, Pipkin, Sale, Grens, Berry, Richardson, Cowen, Eads, Lovejoy, and others.
John Sappington, Sr., erected a horse-mill for grinding grain, the first in the township. Z. Sappington, M. Tesson, and William L. Long each built grist-mills of two horse-power. Jonah and John Sappington, Jr., built a large and profitable tread-mill for grinding grain and sawing lumber. A large stone water-mill was built by G. Sarpy on the Des Peres River, at the Gravois road crossing. This mill was a great convenience to the farmers in the counties of St. Louis and Jefferson.
Capt. James Mackay, for a time in Territorial authority under Don Zenon Trudeau, purchased and settled on survey No. 3066, and opened a farm, on which he made many improvements. He resided on this farm till his death. He was a land surveyor. His son, Zenon Mackay, now resides on this farm, and owns a large portion of the tract which his father purchased.
Joseph Wells settled on the western part of survey No. 9 in 1806, and was a successful farmer and stock-raiser.
His life was long and useful, and he left many descendants worthy of his good name.
John Long and family came from Bonhomme to the central part of the same survey in 1807. He entered adjoining lands, and was a successful farmer to the time of his death in 1826.
Philip Fine, Sr., located on survey No. 50, near the mouth of Meramec River. He established Lovering's Ferry, so called after his son-in-law, Lawson Lovering.
David Fine opened a farm on his grant, No. 1988. He and his wife, with Eli Musick and wife and Judge Joseph Sale, organized the first Baptist Church in the township, now known as Concord Church.
G. St. John resided many years and died on survey No. 3065, on the Meramec River. After his death his son-in-law, Dr. Butler, lived on the place and practiced his profession with success.
In 1818, Commodore Theodore Hunt purchased of William S. Long the eastern portion of survey No. 9. He resided on and improved this during about three years, then sold it to Col. Frederick Dent, the father of Mrs. Gen. Grant. Mr. Dent remained on this farm, making valuable additions and improvements, till 1865, when he removed to Washington City, where he died at the advanced age of eighty-seven years. His remains were brought to St. Louis by Gen. Grant, and buried, with those of his wife, in Bellefontaine cemetery. Col. Dent was an active promoter of the public schools in the county, and to his efforts the people are largely indebted for the efficiency of the public schools. He was at one time treasurer. His youngest son, Judge Lewis Dent, erected a neat and costly residence on a high commanding swell of the same tract, and named it "Wish-ton-wish." It was accidentally burned in 1871.
Jonah Parke, a pioneer from Madison County, Ky., in 1804, settled, in 1807 or 1808, on survey No. 2995, and there passed a long and happy life, loved and honored by all who knew him. At his death his two youngest sons, Charles and Samuel, sub divided the tract, a large portion of which is owned by Judge Shore, of the St. Louis County Court.
Col. Philip Pipkin, a colonel under Gen. Jackson in the Creek and Seminole wars, came from Tennessee in 1830, and in 1836 purchased a part of the David Fine survey, No. 1988, erected a comfortable dwelling and other buildings, and opened a profitable farm. He was highly honored and respected for his gallantry as a soldier and his integrity as a citizen. He died in 1841; lamented by a large circle of acquaintances and friends.
Anderson Bowles came from Virginia at an early day, and located near the present site of Kirkwood. His amiable wife was one of the first members of the Methodist Church, and was widely known as "Mother Bowles."
These pioneers have passed away, but those of their descendants who remember them recall with pride the sterling virtues which adorned their characters, their high moral worth, their stern integrity, and their active benevolence.
The population of the township was, in 1850, 2354; 1860, 7831; 1870, 5387; 1880, 5691.
Concord Farmers' Club. This association was first organized on the 5th day of April, 1873, at the residence of Mr. Adam Schuetz, on the Tesson Ferry road, by the farmers in the immediate vicinity. Sept. 21, 1874, a certificate of incorporation was issued to C. D. Wolff, J. Henry Zelch, Henry Crecelieus, C. J. Tautphoeues, George Schaedler, Otto Theiss, Henry Horst, Christopher Heim, and others. During the same year a building site of about two acres was purchased on the Concord School road, one-fourth of a mile west of the Tesson Ferry road, and one and one-half miles south of the Gravois Rock road and town of Sappington (it being a part of what is known as the Saugrain tract), on which the present "Farmers' Club Hall" was erected at a cost of two thousand two hundred dollars, to which improvements to the amount of several hundred dollars have been added since. The building is a frame structure, two stories in height, seventy-five by thirty-five feet, size of main, hall forty-five by thirty-five feet, the whole building consisting of nine separate apartments.
The object of the club is the improvement of its members in everything pertaining to agriculture, horticulture, and domestic economy. No sectarian or political discussions are permitted to be introduced in the club. Only practical farmers and horticulturists of good moral character are eligible for active membership, but persons engaged in other pursuits may become honorary members. The present number of active members is one hundred and three, number of honorary members thirteen, making the total membership one hundred and sixteen. The club has a library of over five hundred volumes, with an additional yearly appropriation of one hundred dollars for books. The regular meetings of the club are held on the first Saturday of each month from April to September, inclusive, at eight o'clock P. M., and on the first and third Saturdays of each month from October to March, inclusive, at seven o'clock P. M. Its officers, are elected at the first meeting in January of each year, and it is officered at present as follows: President, Thomas J. Sappington; Vice-Presidents, Henry
Crecelieus and George Schaedler; Recording Secretary, William H. Sappington; Corresponding Secretary, Jacob Schaedler; Secretary of Finance, Lewis Crecelieus; Treasurer, C. J. Tautphoeus; Librarian, C. Heim; Assistant Librarian, William Nebe; and an executive committee consisting of five members.
The Farmers' Mutual Fire Insurance Company of St. Louis County, Mo., was organized by members of the Concord Farmers' Club, and a few other farmers in the neighborhood, in the months of February and March, 1875, and duly incorporated on the 1st of April, in the same year, under an act of the General Assembly of the State of Missouri, entitled "An Act providing for the incorporation and management of local insurance companies," approved March 27, 1874. The following-named gentlemen were elected the first board of directors: Thomas J. Sappington, C. D. Wolff, William A. Weinrich, John P. Litzinger, John H. Horst, Charles Mehl, Martin Rott, and Henry Crecelius. At a meeting held by the said board of directors, April 3, 1875, Thomas J. Sappington was elected president, C. D. Wolff secretary, J. Henry Zelch vice-president, and Martin Rott treasurer. The first policies were issued on the 12th day of June, 1875, and since that time the business of the company has been steadily increasing. They have at risk nearly half a million of dollars, extending all over the county of St. Louis, and they hold premium notes amounting to over one hundred thousand dollars, besides the sum of four thousand dollars cash, and no liabilities. There are now one thousand policies in force. The success of this company is chiefly due to the good management of the board of directors and the efficiency of the president, Thomas J. Sappington. The present board is composed of twelve directors, Thomas J. Sappington, C. D. Wolff, John Heintz, Frederick W. Sternes, Henry Crecelius, John P. Litzinger, George Greb, James A. Eddie, J. Henry Zelch, Martin Rott, Perry Sappington, and Julius Nolte.
The officers are Thomas J. Sappington, president; J. Henry Zelch, vice-president; C. D. Wolff, secretary; and Henry Crecelius, treasurer.
German Evangelical St. Paul's Church. In 1838 this society was organized, one mile west from Oakville, on the Baumgartner road. In 1845 the present church building was erected. It is a log structure, thirty by forty feet in size, and the congregation worshiped in it as it was originally built during many years. In 1840 it was weather-boarded outside, renovated and ceiled within, and a gallery was added, making the seating capacity three hundred, and it has now the appearance of a framed structure. It stands in a cemetery, which was established at the time the church was erected. It is furnished with a pipe-organ, the cost of which was four hundred and twenty dollars. The present number of constitutional members of the congregation is sixty-two. The pastors of this church have been Revs. E. L. Nollau, 1838; G. W. Wall, 1846; Gotthilf Weitbrecht, 1852; J. M. Kopf, 1853; Jung, 1858; William Fromm, 1860; John Will, 1864; Heinrich Schmitz, 1867; Schmidt, 1878; and the present pastor, C. V. Wargowski, 1881.
A parochial school, taught in the German language, has been maintained from the first. It is kept in the basement of the parsonage. The church has no debt.
Church, of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin. This is located near Mattis Creek, where as early as 1842 mass was celebrated by Rev. Father Fischer, of St. Louis. In that year seven acres of land on the Mattis road, one mile from the Lemay Ferry road, were purchased, and a log church was built. The congregation at that time consisted of seven families, and was supplied by Father Fischer, from St. Mary's Church, St. Louis, during two years. In February, 1844. Rev. Joseph Melcher became resident pastor, and in that year a log parsonage was built. This was afterward used as a school-house, then as a teachers' residence, then as a stable, and in 1879 it was burned. Father Melcher was succeeded in 1846 by Rev. Father Zeller, who was followed in 1847 by Rev. Simon Sigrist. In 1849, Rev. Joseph Blaarer came, and was succeeded in the same year by Rev. Remegius Gebhart, who died in 1852, and was followed in 1853 by Rev. John Reis. In 1858, Rev. Matthias Leutner became pastor, and in 1859, Rev. Henry Broekhagen came. He remained till 1871, and was succeeded by Rev. Henry Plebs, who remained two years. In 1873, Rev. Peter Bremerich took charge, and in 1875 he was followed by Rev. William Sonnenschein, who left in 1878, and was succeeded by the present pastor, Rev. Joseph Pope.
The original log church was used till 1848, when the present brick church was built, and the log house became a school-house, for which it is still used. The present church has a seating capacity of two hundred.
In 1871 a brick parsonage near the church was built at an expense of sixteen hundred dollars, and in 1874 a teacher's residence, also of brick, was erected at a cost of five hundred dollars.
From the first a parochial school has been maintained by this congregation, and it is now under the charge of the Franciscan Sisters. In this school instruction is given in both the German and English languages. The parish has no debt.
German Evangelical St. John's Church. This is located on the Concord School road, one mile northeast from Mehlville. It was organized Jan. 29, 1849, with fifteen members. The first church edifice was a log building, and was erected the same year the society was organized. The parsonage, also a log house, was built the same year. A log school-house was erected in 1865. All these buildings were afterwards weather-boarded and painted.
In 1868 a new church was erected on the site of the old one. It is a brick structure, with a seating capacity of four hundred, and its cost was $10,000. A new bell was placed in the tower in 1883, at a cost of $300. A pipe-organ was purchased in 1881 at a cost of $550.
The parsonage is used as a teacher's residence, and the same old school-house is still in use. A parochial school has been kept here, first in the church, then in the parsonage, and since 1865 in the school-house. The present pastor, Rev. John Will, was the teacher during fourteen years. A teacher is now employed in this school, in which the instruction is given in the German language. It has an average of fifty pupils.
The membership of the church is one hundred heads of families. The pastors have been Revs. G. W. Wall, 1849; E. L. Nollau, 1850; William Rampmeier, 1853; Frederick Judt, 1856; I. G. Stanejer, 1860; and the present pastor, John Will, 1863.
German Evangelical St. Lucas Church. This society was organized in 1880, with eighteen constituent members. They first worshiped in the Rock school-house near Sappington, but in 1881 their present church edifice was built. It is a frame house, thirty by forty-five feet in size, and its cost was three thousand five hundred dollars.
The first pastor was Rev. Joseph A. Steinhardt, followed in 1882 by the present pastor, Rev. S. Kruse.
A parochial school, in which instruction is given in the German language, is taught in a part of the church. The attendance at this school is an average of twenty-five.
Church of Jesus Christ. In August, 1881, Rev. Charles H. Ganthier organized a Sunday-school in the McKenzie school-house near Afton post-office. This school was conducted by him during a year, when successful efforts to erect a church and organize a parish were made by Mr. Ganthier and several members of the Episcopal Church in that vicinity. In August, 1882, a church building was commenced, and in the latter part of the next month services were first held in it. It is a wooden structure of the Gothic order of architecture, twenty by thirty feet in size, and its cost was twelve hundred dollars. Mr. Ganthier has been the rector from the first, and his labors here have been crowned with great success. The parish has no debt.
Convent of the Sisters of St. Joseph at Nazareth. This convent, a branch of the convent at Carondelet, was established on the Kinger road, two and a half miles southwesterly from Jefferson Barracks, in 1872. It was designed as a home for the aged and infirm sisters of the order, and for this purpose it has been used. The establishment comprises a farm of eighty acres, on which the convent was erected in the year before named. It is of brick, three stories in height, and it forms three sides of a courtyard. It is fitted up with special reference to the comfort of those who have become infirm from age or any other cause. It has a capacity for thirty patients, and an average of fifteen is the attendance. Mother St. John was the Superior of this house till 1879, when the present Superior, Mother De Chantan, took charge.
Glendale School for Boys was opened Nov. 1, 1882, at Glendale, on the Missouri Pacific Railroad, eleven miles west from St. Louis, by E. A. Haight, A. M. He purchased, for the purposes of his school, a large mansion with fourteen acres of ground, known as the Col. Leighton property. The school opened with two scholars, and from this small beginning it steadily increased till, at the beginning of 1883, it numbered twenty-two. It is particularly designed as a boarding-school for boys, for which its pleasant and healthful location and its easy communication with the city of St. Louis admirably fit it.
Mount Sinai Cemetery. In 1849 the B'nai El congregation purchased an acre of ground on the Gravois road, just beyond the present city limits, and there interments were made till 1868. In that year the Mount Sinai Cemetery Association was incorporated under the general law, and an addition to this of six and a half acres was purchased and laid out. Three years later, or in 1872, a brick building was erected there for a chapel and sexton's residence. This is a tasteful building, and the chapel is elegantly finished, frescoed, and ornamented. In this chapel the funeral services of those interred in the cemetery are held. Splendid monuments are scattered through the cemetery, which is well kept and cared for. By the regulations of the association all members of the congregations B'nai El and Shaare Emeth and their families are entitled to free burial in this cemetery, as are also the poor. The cost of the cemetery with its improvements has amounted to eighteen thousand dollars. The first president of the association was D. Singer, followed, in 1870, by L. R. Straus,
and he, in 1872, by the present incumbent of the office, Louis J. Singer.
Public Schools. The inhabitants of the township of Carondelet have not been unmindful of the importance of education as a means for developing and moulding the characters of their children. In many parts of the township may still be seen the primitive log school-house, which sprang into existence as soon as there were a sufficient number of children in a neighborhood to constitute a school. These unpretentious temples of science were reared long before the public school system was established, and when this system was provided they were utilized under it as district school-houses. As time has gone on and better educational facilities have come to be necessary, larger and more tasteful buildings have been erected, and now the traveler through the township sees in different localities houses that, in capacity, convenience, and elegance, will compare favorably with those of any region in the country.
In accordance with the customs in their native lands, many of the foreign immigrants have maintained parochial schools for the education of their children in their own cherished faith, but these have not been permitted to supersede the public schools.
St. Louis Quarantine Hospital. 354 In 1854 the city of St. Louis purchased from Augustus Langkopt fifty-eight acres of land on the western shore of the Mississippi River, a mile and a quarter south from Jefferson Barracks, and twelve miles from St. Louis. On this ground stood an inn, which is now used as the residence of the superintendent of the quarantine.
Buildings were erected for hospital purposes near the river. They were one-story wooden buildings, and were at first used for general hospital purposes. On the occurrence of the yellow fever in 1878 these were used for the reception and treatment of yellow fever patients, and upward of one hundred cases were received and treated here. A recurrence of the disease was expected the next year, and it was determined to erect buildings farther from the river and on more elevated ground, for the reception of patients. These buildings were therefore burned early in the summer of 1879, and six new pavilions were erected about three hundred yards west from the river, on ground sixty feet higher than that on which the ones burned stood. These pavilions or wards are each twenty-five by fifty feet, and have excellent facilities for ventilation. They are supplied with water from a reservoir that was built that year, and which has a capacity of one hundred and sixty thousand gallons. Into this reservoir water is pumped from the river, and from it distributed to all parts of the grounds where water is needed. On the river-bank stands a bath-room, to which patients are conveyed from boats, stripped of their infected clothing, and after a warm or cold bath, as their condition requires, they are wrapped in clean new clothing and conveyed to the wards. A short distance from this is a fumigating-house, where various disinfectants and appliances for fumigating boats, trunks, bedding, and clothing are kept. About two hundred yards up the river from this is the place where the infected bedding and clothing of patients is taken to be burned. About three hundred yards west from the wards spoken of, on still higher ground, stand two smallpox wards that had been previously erected. These have a capacity for fifty patients each, and they are at all times kept in readiness for the reception of cases as they may occur. In addition to these the necessary buildings for the use of the superintendent, physicians, employés, nurses, etc., have been erected, and the establishment is considered complete in all its parts. It is used as a quarantine whenever it is necessary to enforce quarantine regulations, and at all other times as a hospital for the treatment of patients affected with infectious diseases.
A few years prior to the yellow fever epidemic a general desire was felt to dispense with the quarantine, because of its expensiveness and the belief that it was unnecessary. Better counsels prevailed, however, and the experience of that year fully demonstrated the utility of the establishment and silenced the clamor for its abolition. The necessity for its maintenance at all times was shown by the experience of 1882, during which year five hundred cases of smallpox were treated in its wards.
It is worthy of remark that the National Board of Health visited this quarantine station in 1881, and pronounced it the best in the Mississippi valley, and second to none in the United States.
The superintendents of the establishment have been Dr. R. S. Anderson, Dr. H. C. Davis, who died of yellow fever here in 1878, and since that time the present superintendent, Daniel O'Madigan.
St. Ferdinand is the northeastern township of St. Louis County. It, as well as the church at Florissant, was named in honor of one of the kings of Spain, to which country the territory belonged during many years after its settlement. Its boundaries are the Missouri River on the north and west, Mississippi
River and the city of St. Louis on the east, Central township and St. Louis city on the south, and a small portion of Bonhomme township on the west. It is drained by Cold Water, or St. Ferdinand Creek, which rises near its southern boundary and pursues a serpentine course northeasterly, to discharge its waters into the Missouri River, and by Maline Creek, which also rises near the south line of the township, and passes eastward, then southward, and empties into the Mississippi. Fee-Fee Creek crosses a small portion of the southwestern corner of the township.
The surface is rolling and the soil fertile. Agriculture is the principal industry of the township, and Indian corn and wheat are the staple crops.
The principal roads which traverse the township and converge toward the city of St. Louis are the Bellefontaine road, which leads to Spanish Pond, a little lake lying north from St. Louis, and the Hall's Ferry road, which leads across the township in a north-westerly direction, and touches the Missouri River below Mullanphy Island. The latter was once a plank-road, but, as in case of other roads of that kind, its planks have been worn out or removed and replaced by other materials. The old Hall's Ferry road diverges from this toward the east at a point a few miles from the city, and pursues a tortuous course toward the same point on the Missouri. The Natural Bridge road extends in a nearly direct line from St. Louis to Bridgeton, and thence to its junction with the St. Charles Rock road. A branch also extends northward from Normandy to Florissant. These roads were constructed as plank-roads by a company about 1850, but after a few years they became county roads, and, as in other cases, the planks were removed. The St. Charles Rock road crosses the southwestern portion of the township in a northwesterly direction, and terminates on the Missouri River at Brotherton, opposite St. Charles.
The St. Louis, Kansas City and Northern Railroad crosses the township between St. Louis and St. Charles. College View Hill, Ferguson, Ashland, Graham, Bridgeton, Bonfils, and Brotherton Stations on this road are in this township.
The West End Narrow-Gauge Railroad has its northern terminus at Florissant, and gives that city direct communication with St. Louis. This road has stations in this township at Carsonville, Scudder, Graham's, Taylor Road, and Florissant.
St. Ferdinand was first settled by French immigrants, and although soon after its settlement the entire French possessions west of the Mississippi came under the dominion of Spain, it continued to be essentially a French settlement. By an examination of the baptismal register of the Church of St. Ferdinand, the family names of most of the original or early settlers may be found, and of these a large portion are still represented in the township, either in the paternal or maternal line. Among them are the names of Lefevre, Rivi&eagrave;re, De Hetre, Primault, Marechal, Mercier, Lachasse, Dubreuil, Rapun, Menard, De Lisle, Martin, Dejarlais, Carico, Billiot, Peltier, Tesson, Hubert, Montreuil, Moreau, Grills, Aubuchon, Ouvrey, St. Germain, Brant, Tourville, Bennet, Payant, La Bonne, Alair, Wedington, Barada, Thibaut, Courtois, Gendrom, Bourk, St. Gin, Beaudoin, Presse, Musick, James, Burk, Chovin, Brazeau, Chaput, Derosier, Lorain, Miles, Pera, Smith, Robidou Vasquez, Fortin, Gailloux, Tayon, Latoure, Weaver, Clement, Sanguinette, Chouteau, Walton, Brisette, Pilaire, Denoyer, Dolson, Read, Castello, St. Cyr, Mullanphy, Chambers, La Violette, Hodromont, L'Esperance, Beaufils, Laramie, Bellville, Vacha, Mulhall, Stevenson, Geno, Goss, Graham, Dillon, Taylor, Rapreux, Hyatt, Clark, Stergers, Higgins, Fremont, Hanly, McMenemy, Grace, Harnett. Other pioneers were Magill, Brown, Archambault, Richardson, Long, Hubbard, Hume, Bates, Harris, Stuart, Jamison, Hodges, Seely, Patterson, Sullivan, Utz, Howdeshell, Carter, Evans, Putnam, Reardon, Todd, Fugate, Quick, Whiteside, Hall, Walker, Yosti, and Worthington.
The father of Judge Hyatt was an early settler in St. Ferdinand, and both father and son have been prominent, active, and useful citizens. James Richardson and Thomas Musick, if not the first, were very early settlers in the southern part of the township. The first came from Virginia, and he was instrumental in bringing here many American settlers, whom he aided in many ways. He was a saddler, and it is said that he once presented to the Spanish alcalde a side-saddle for his wife, for which the alcalde in return presented him a grant of a thousand arpens of land, of which Patterson's Settlement is a part. He came to be a very large landholder.
The early inhabitants of this township, and even those living here at a comparatively recent period, had primitive habits and customs. Their wants were few and easily supplied; the fruitful soil of the region enabled them to raise the necessaries of life easily, and the mild climate did not necessitate those preparations for winter that are required in more northern latitudes. St. Louis afforded a market for the wood or little surplus produce which they wished to exchange for the few luxuries in which they indulged, and they pursued the even tenor of their way, undisturbed by the bickerings and jealousies which creep into modern
society, or by the vanities which fashion engenders. Each rejoiced in the prosperity of his neighbor, or sympathized with him in his adversity. They were contented and happy, and in their dealings with each other they were honest to an extent hardly known in modern times. It is said that the first immigrant who placed a lock on his smoke-house excited a high degree of indignation among the inhabitants by that act. They looked on the lock as a standing insult, equivalent to a direct accusation of dishonesty, and were disposed to remove it from their sight by summary process. The population of the township was in 1860, 4289; 1870, 7214; 1880, 7923.
Fort Bellefontaine, or Old "Fort St. Charles, the Prince." Fort Bellefontaine was established at the mouth of Cold Water Creek, or St. Ferdinand River, in 1806, by Gen. Wilkinson, then Governor of the newly-acquired Territory of Louisiana. It was during many years the frontier military post, and it was from this point that Lewis and Clark left the borders of civilization on their celebrated tour of exploration. It was occupied by the United States till the establishment of Jefferson Barracks, in 1827, when the troops stationed there were removed to the latter post. The works have gone to decay, and the exact location of the fort is not now discernible.
The following memoranda, gleaned from different sources, give a history of the earlier and later transfers of the land on which stood this fort:
"Governor Zenon Trudeau granted to one Hezekiah Lard (or Lord) a concession of one thousand arpens (850.77 acres) of land on the Missouri River, in the north part of this county, through which runs the Cold Water Creek, dated Sept. 10, 1797. H. Lard built a house, etc., a saw- and grist-mill, and made a farm of the land, and died on it late in 1799. At the request of the widow, an inventory of the estate was taken by James Mackay, commandant of St. Andrew's, by order of the Governor, Nov. 9, 1799, as follows: One thousand arpens of land, seven hundred dollars, with house and farm, saw- and gristmill and apparatus, five hundred dollars; personal, eight hundred and seventy-three dollars, two thousand and seventy-three dollars.
"The widow, whose maiden name was Catherine Sullivan Purcell, subsequently married one Morris James, and John Lard, brother of the deceased, having an interest in the mill and farm, the parties petitioned the Governor for a settlement of the estate. With his consent the widow appointed Wm. Musick and John Patterson to act for her, and John Lard appointed Richard Chitwood and John Allen on his part. The Governor named James Richardson umpire, April 2, 1803.
"These parties met at the place on April 23, 1803, in presence of Joseph Hortiz, notary, to superintend and record, and Samuel Soloman to interpret, sent up by the Governor for that purpose. They decided that the farm and land belonged to the estate of Hezekiah Lard, deceased, and that John Lard was entitled to two hundred and fifty-nine dollars. ‘John Lard, when he lived with his brother on the farm, sold a horse for eighty dollars and a bull for thirty-five dollars, which they leave to the Governor to decide whether he shall repay it; and sixteen hundred feet of boards sold by John Lard he must pay for to the estate. Signed by all the parties, John Lard, Morris James, C. Sullivan Purcell James, John Allen, Wm. Musick, Richard Chitwood, John Patterson, James Richardson, Joseph Hortiz, notary. Costs of arbitration: Hortiz, $5.50; Governor, $2; deed, $4; total, $11.50.’
"The sale of the property of the estate took place on the 10th and 24th of the month.
"The auctioneer to be paid by the estate. April 26, 1803.
"1. William Massey to the United States, April 20, 1806, for two hundred and fifty dollars, paid by Gen. James Wilkinson, United States army, five acres of this land, with the factory and buildings, called Bellefontaine, and the use for five years of the ground now used for the cantonment, with the buildings, gardens, woodland, etc., part of Lard's survey of one thousand arpens.
"2. William Massey to Gen. James Wilkinson, July 29, 1806, for two thousand five hundred dollars, about five hundred arpens of land, called Bellefontaine, except the five acres sold to the United States, and which lies within the said tract.
"There is a deed of William Tharp to Gen. James Wilkinson, April 21, 1806, for the above five hundred arpens for the same consideration, two thousand five hundred dollars, Book A, 269, but as Tharp had no title to the land it must have been for Massey while absent.
"3. State of South Carolina, James Wilkinson, general United States army, to the United States, March, 1809, for two thousand five hundred dollars, the Bellefontaine tract, commencing at the mouth of Coldwater Creek; up said creek, east side, to the back line of Lard's grant; thence east on said line to line of Morris James; thence north on said line to the Missouri; thence with the meanders of said river to the beginning, less the five acres bought by the United States from William Massey, about five hundred French acres, with the appurtenances thereon.
"4. United States, by Gen. Cass, Secretary of War, to James Samuel, Dunham Spalding, H. N. Davis, and E. T. Langham, at Washington, Sept. 29, 1836, for $1880.10, the above tract, etc., now called 219.47 acres. They laid out the town of Bellefontaine in 1836."
City of St. Ferdinand. This city, the corporate name of which is as above, is spoken of in some early histories as "Fleurissant," but now bears the common designation of "Florissant." It was settled at
about the same time that the first adventurers located at St. Louis, and was at first an Indian trading-post and a Jesuit mission. Father Meurin, S. J., is believed to have been the earliest missionary who labored among the natives at this point.
But little of the history of the station during the first thirty years of its existence is known. In 1793 it had acquired sufficient importance to be placed under the especial care of the government, as the following translation of a decree issued by the Governor of the province will show:
"The Baron of Carondelet, Knight of the Order of St. John, Colonel of the Royal Armies, Governor, Intendant-General, Vice-Patron of the Provinces of Louisiana, Western Florida, and Inspector of their Troops, etc.
"Inasmuch as His Majesty, whom God preserve, by his royal edict of the 17th of August of 1772, has been pleased to concede to this government the authority to grant titles to special lieutenants of this province, and there having been formed in the district of Ylinoa a new settlement by the name of St. Fernando, and it being necessary to provide for the civil and military government of the same, because of good conduct, distinguished zeal, exactitude, probity, and disinterestedness, which are requisite to insure confidence in the administration of public affairs, and these special qualifications being united in Mr. Blanchete, therefore, exercising the authority in me vested by the said royal decree, I declare and nominate for special lieutenant, with the rank of captain of militia of the said settlement of St. Fernando, its boundaries and jurisdiction, the said Mr. Blanchete, immediately subordinate, however, to the captain commandant of the establishment of Ylinoa, whom I command to have him recognized as such, and to the neighbors, sojourners, and inhabitants of the said post that they respect and obey him as such civil and military commander in all matters within the scope of his authority, awarding and causing to be awarded to him the honors and deference to which he is entitled by reason of his office.
"These presents given, signed with my hand, sealed with the seal of my arms, and countersigned by the underwritten secretary of His Majesty for this government and intendancy.
"At New Orleans, the 30th of January, of one thousand seven hundred and ninety-three.
[Eagle and lion seal.] "EL BARON DE CARONDELET,
ANDRES LOPEZ ARMESTO,
In 1829 the place was first incorporated as a town, but after a few years the charter was allowed to lapse by neglect of the people to select officers. In 1843 it was again incorporated, and its existence as a town continued till 1857, when it was chartered as a city by an act of the Legislature.
After its settlement the Spanish government, in accordance with its custom, granted to the inhabitants of the village five thousand arpens (or four thousand two hundred and fifty acres) of common lands, which have since been known as the St. Ferdinand commons. These were for fuel and pasturage, and they were used as common lands till the time of the second incorporation of the town, when they were leased to the inhabitants for long periods of time (usually one thousand years), in forty-acre lots, at a nominal rent.
What was known as the common fields was composed of parcels granted by the Spanish government to settlers in the town. These were each one arpent, or about sixty-four yards in width, and extended "from river to river," or from Cold Water Creek to the Missouri River.
By reason of their characteristic sociability, and for mutual protection against the Indians, the first settlers had their dwellings in the town, and their farms were in this long, narrow shape, so that as they went to and returned from their daily labors they were together, and were thus able the better to defend themselves in case of sudden attacks. The titles to the commons and the common fields, which were thus acquired under Spanish rule, were confirmed by an act of Congress in 1812, and the people, or their legal representatives, who had thus acquired lands in these common fields (so called because of the way of inclosing and working them) received deeds or certificates of confirmation by complying with certain prescribed formalities and making the necessary proofs of occupancy, etc. These long, narrow tracts have mostly disappeared, or assumed forms more in accordance with modern customs.
The precautions which the pioneer settlers adopted for protection against the savages were not unnecessary, as their subsequent experience proved. Among the Creole population at Florissant there are numerous traditions of murders by Indian marauders, either singly or in small bands, and without doubt these traditions have truthful foundations, though they may have become much distorted in their details by oral transmission.
The difficulties and embarrassments, present and prospective, arising out of the renting of the St. Ferdinand commons led the people, in 1856-57, to seek a remedy for the evil, and this was finally found in an act of the Assembly incorporating the town as a city. The act was approved Feb. 11, 1857, and contained along with the usual provisions of city charters one authorizing the legislative department of the city "to provide for the inclosing and improving, settling and conveying of all property, real and personal, belonging to said city, and especially for the sale and conveyance of all the lands embraced within the United States survey No. 1202." This survey was made under the act of confirmation passed by Congress in 1812. Under this provision of the charter about six-sevenths of these commons have been sold.
Owing to the loss of the records, the officers
under the first incorporation, which continued from 1829 till 1832, and of the second, which was in force from 1843 till 1857, cannot be given. Under the city charter the mayors have been as follows: Gregoire Aubuchon, 1857; Michael Powers, 1858; Golvin Musick, 1860; Joseph C. Vrand, 1861; Julian Bates, 1862; Leonard Adams, 1863; William J. A. Smith, 1864; and the present mayor, Charles Castello, 1865.
Charles Castello is of remote Spanish descent, though his grandfather came to this country from Ireland. He was born at Mineral Point, Wis., May 22, 1839, but his parents removed to Florissant, Mo., when he was an infant. He received a common school education and was reared as a farmer. At the age of twenty he went to Colorado, where he was engaged during a year and a half in mining. He then returned to Florissant and became a clerk in a store, where he remained during several years. He afterwards became an operator in real estate, and thus acquired a handsome competency. He continues to deal in real estate, and is also a conveyancer and notary.
In 1865 he was elected mayor of the city of St. Ferdinand, and has been re-elected to that office at every subsequent municipal election. He has also been during many years an efficient member of the school board. He now holds the office of public administrator in St. Louis County. He has always been a Democrat, politically, though during the war of 1861-65 he was a firm supporter of the Union. In his religious faith he is a Catholic.
In 1868, Mr. Castello was married to Miss Dora Menke, of Florissant, and they have had four children, two of whom are living.
As an evidence of the place which Mr. Castello holds in the esteem of his fellow-citizens, it is only necessary to point to his long term of service as chief magistrate of the city of St. Ferdinand.
Of the members of the Council of St. Ferdinand three are chosen each year, and in view of the fact that the office is altogether unprofitable, the incumbents have been many. For like reasons the office of clerk and register has been filled by many, often by several in the same year. The treasurers have been Samuel James, Lewis R. Brand, George Grotzinger, Charles W. Smith, and William Mreen. Of these Samuel James has held the office three-fourths of the entire period.
Mr. James' father, who was of Welsh descent, removed from Kentucky to Florissant in 1793. His mother, whose maiden name was Julia Crilis, was a French Creole, born in Cahokia. Mr. James was born in Florissant, in the house where he now resides, Sept. 16, 1817. He received his education in such schools as were kept in the country before the establishment of the public school system, was reared a farmer, and has always followed that occupation. He became by purchase the owner of the farm which had been the property of his father, and he still owns a large portion of that estate. Between 1840 and 1850 he was engaged in the business of shipping cattle and hogs to New Orleans. In 1850 he went to California, where he engaged for a short time in mining. Aside from this his life has been passed at Florissant.
At the age of twenty-one Mr. James was elected a trustee of the town of St. Ferdinand, and served in that capacity during several years. He was made treasurer of the town in 1854, and held that office in the town and city until 1881. He became treasurer of the school board at the same time, and still holds that position. In August, 1860, he was elected one of the judges of the County Court of St. Louis County, and served in that capacity until the enactment of the ordinance vacating the office in the State. During his term of office the St. Louis County Insane Asylum was established.
Judge James has always held the Catholic faith, in which he was reared, and in politics has acted with the Democratic party.
He was married Feb. 18, 1838, to Miss Virginia Robertson, of Bridgeton, St. Louis Co., and they have had eleven children, eight of whom are now living.
Judge James has always maintained an unblemished character for integrity, and is a respected and influential citizen.
The situation and surroundings of Florissant have not been such as to lead to the establishment there of any important manufactories or shops, beyond what have been required to meet the wants of the people in the immediate vicinity. The round-house and machine-shop of the West End Narrow-Gauge Railroad is located here, at the terminus of that road. It is the repair-shop of the road, and it has facilities for making all the repairs on the rolling-stock, and building locomotives when necessary. The machinery is driven by an engine of twenty-five horse-power, and eight men are employed. E. D. Church is the foreman and master-mechanic.
The city has now six general stores, two hotels, three wagon- and blacksmith-shops, four shops, three tailor-shops, two harness-shops, one shoe manufactory, one tin-shop, and two physicians. Its population, according to the census of 1880, was eight hundred and seventeen.
Florissant Valley Lodge, No. 19, National
American Association. This was organized in 1881 with eighteen charter members, of whom Walter Evans was president; John D. E. Belleville, vice-president; Charles Castello, secretary; Robet Evans, treasurer; and Gabriel Loraine, collector. The present officers are John Belleville, president; John D. E. Belleville, vice-president; Charles Castello, secretary; Robert Evans, treasurer; and Gabriel Loraine, collector. John Belleville is also deputy national president. It is a beneficiary and mutual insurance association.
Florissant Public School. Prior to 1845 the parochial school of the Church of St. Ferdinand and the conventual school afforded the inhabitants of the town their only educational facilities. In March of that year an act was passed by the Legislature "to incorporate an academy in the town of St. Ferdinand, St. Louis Co." The trustees named in the act were James Castello, Gregoire Aubuchon, George McCullough, James L. Holliday, Edward Harrington, Thomas J. Minor, William Nutt, Paul G. Lindsay, and John B. James, and provision was made for the election of their successors by the inhabitants of the town. The act provided that instruction in the common and higher branches should be given free to the children residing within the limits of the town, and common provision was made for the support of this academy by appropriating two-thirds of the revenue arising from the rents of the commons, which were then under leases. Under this act a one-story brick school building with two apartments was erected, and in this the school was conducted till 1857, when increased facilities were required, and an addition was made to the building, doubling its capacity.
In 1871 the academy plan was dropped, and the city and commons were constituted a school district under the general school law. In 1876 a new school building was erected on Washington Street, in an elevated and pleasant part of the city. The site includes an entire square, giving ample room for playgrounds. The building is of brick, two stories in height, with four school-rooms, having an aggregate capacity for two hundred and seventy pupils, and up to the present time three of these rooms have been occupied and three teachers employed. In the tower of the building a clock has been placed.
In that portion of the district known as the commons a school of primary and intermediate grades is maintained.
The aggregate number of children instructed in these schools during 1881-82 was two hundred and eleven. The cost of the school edifice in Washington Street was between nine and ten thousand dollars, and the total value of the school property belonging to the city is eleven thousand dollars. The amount expended in the district in 1881-82 for school purposes was two thousand eight hundred and seventy-two dollars.
Church of St. Ferdinand. As early as 1792 a wooden church stood in the old burial-ground at Florissant. It was called the Church of St. Ferdinand, in honor of the king of Spain who expelled the Moors from that country. The first entry in the baptismal register is as follows: "On Aug. 5, 1792, I, Pierre Joseph Didier, of the order of St. Benedict at Maux, Royal Abbey of St. Denis, and a missionary priest, baptized Claude Pallot, at St. Ferdinand, Florissant." Father Didier remained till 1798, when he was succeeded by Rev. F. L. Tusson, a Recollect, who signed as "curate of St. Charles." He was followed, in 1806, by Rev. J. Maxwell, and he, in the same year, by Rev. Thomas Flynn. After the pastorate of Father Flynn, the Trappists took charge in 1808. The Superior was Rev. Marie Joseph Dunand, who was assisted in the pastorate there from 1809 to 1811 by other Trappists. He resided at Monks' Mound, on the Collinsville plank-road, six miles east of the St. Louis bridge, from 1810 till 1813, visiting Florissant weekly. In 1813 the Trappists left Illinois for France, and Father Dunand (who was commonly known as "the Father Prior") took up his residence at Florissant, where he remained till May, 1820, when he returned to France, and Rev. Charles Delacroix took charge. In 1821 the present church building was commenced. Prior to this time the trustee system had been in vogue here, and this had led to embarrassments and conflicts of authority. Oct. 11, 1821, Bishop Dubourg recorded the following order: "The power of the trustees shall cease from the moment when the new church shall be blessed, and the parish priest shall be the only trustee, under our authority." It was also ordered by the bishop: "The old church, the adjacent grounds, and the débris of the old church shall remain at the disposal of the priest. The cemetery shall remain where it is, and shall be kept inclosed and be maintained at the charge of the parishioners."
The corner-stone of this church was laid by Father Delacroix, Feb. 19, 1821, and the stone for the purpose was presented by Madame Duchesne. It contained the following record in the Latin language:
"On this Feb. 19, 1821, I, Charles Delacroix, by permission of Right Rev. Bishop Valentine Louis William Dubourg, laid the corner-stone of this church, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, under the invocation of St. Ferdinand and St. Francis Regis;
Madame Duchesne, Superioress, having donated the said corner-stone, Madame Octavia Berthold and Madame Eugenie Ande being present, as also the pupils and many persons from the village." The church was blessed by Father Delacroix, Nov. 20, 1821, and was dedicated by Bishop Rosatti, Sept. 5, 1823.
On the 20th of June, 1823, the church was made over to Rev. Charles Van Quickenborne, S. J., and it has ever since remained in charge of the Jesuit Fathers. The priests in charge have been, since Father Van Quickenborne, Rev. F. De Theux, 1827; Rev. J. F. Van Assche, 1829; Rev. G. L. Gleizal, 1838; Father Van Assche, 1840; Rev. F. J. Sautois, 1853; Father Van Assche, 1857, who remained till his death in 1877; since then the present pastor, Rev. A. Hayden.
In 1879 the church was enlarged, a new steeple was erected, and the interior was renovated, the whole at an expense of five thousand dollars. The old cemetery became too full for further use, and in 1876 a new and tasteful cemetery was laid out. It is located on a hill about a mile south from the city.
Church of the Sacred Heart. The parish of the Sacred Heart was organized in 1866, in June of which year the corner-stone of the church edifice was laid. It was organized that some forty German families who had become residents in this vicinity might worship together in their native language. The house was completed and dedicated in October, 1867. It is a brick edifice, fifty by one hundred feet, and its cost was twenty-five thousand dollars. The first pastor was Rev. Ignatius Panken, who was succeeded in 1867 by Rev. Ignatius Pankert, and he, in 1876, by the present pastor, Rev. John Banhans. The parish now consists of one hundred and thirty families.
A parochial school was established a year prior to the erection of the church, and a brick building, with a capacity for one hundred pupils, was erected. About 1870 another school building was built, principally for boys. The school is under the charge of the Sisters of the Precious Blood, of whom three are resident here, and one secular teacher is employed. In this school instruction is given in both the English and German languages, and the pupils average one hundred and twenty.
The sisters under whose charge this school has been placed belong to an order the vocation of which is the education of children and youth, and in this they have proved themselves highly efficient.
Sacred Heart Order. The order of the Sacred Heart was first established in America in 1818. In the previous year Right Rev. Father Dubourg, Bishop of Upper and Lower Louisiana, made application to Madame Barat, the Superior-General of the order, for a colony of the sisters to establish a home in his diocese. Accordingly five of these ladies Madame Phillipine Duchesne, Superior, and Sisters Octavie Berthold, Eugenie Ande, Catherine Lamarre, and Marguerite Manteau sailed from France in March, 1818. They arrived in New Orleans late in May, and at St. Louis on the 22d of August in that year. Early in the next month they opened a school in St. Charles, but after a trial of a year it was found that, by reason of the poverty or indifference of the people, they could not maintain themselves there, and arrangements were made for their removal to Florissant, for which place they departed on the 3d of September, 1819. Their transit was thus described by Mother Duchesne: "Sister Octavie and two of our pupils next embarked. I was to close the march in the evening, with Sister Marguerite, the cows and the hens; but the cows were so indignant at being tied, and the heat was so great, that we were obliged to put off our departure to the cool hours of the morning. Then, by dint of cabbages, which we had taken for them in the cart, they were induced to proceed. I divided my attention between the reliquaries and the hens. We crossed the Missouri opposite Florissant. On landing, Marguerite and I drew up our charges in a line she the cows and I the hens and fed them with a motherly solicitude. The Abbé Delacroix came on horseback to meet us. He led the way, galloping after our cows when, in their joy at being untied, they darted into the woods."
Of the region into which these poor but devoted sisters, with their scant effects, came the Abbé Beaunard says, "This country has now, in summer, the appearance of a sea of verdure, studded with oaks of various sorts, walnut-trees, planes, and all kinds of forest-trees, among which stand a number of pretty houses and ornamented villas; but in 1820 not a single cabin was to be seen between St. Louis and Florissant, nothing but a boundless expanse of waving grass, and, to complete the resemblance of this green plain to the ocean, storms often swept over it with sudden violence.
"The Spanish colonist who had originally drawn the plan of this village had given it the name of St. Ferdinand, in honor of the sovereigns of his country, and it is often so called in Madame Duchesne's correspondence. A little church had been built there, under the shadow of which a band of Trappists, driven away from France by the revolution, had taken shelter, and remained there till 1812. The curé of this place, M. Dunand, was the last survivor of this little community,
and he was still known in the village as the Father Prior. He had undertaken to arrange the humble abode which the nuns were to occupy, but as it was not yet finished, they had yet to live in a farm which the bishop had bought in the midst of a wild solitude, surrounded by forests. The Rev. M. Delacroix resided there, and directed the tillage and cultivation of the neighboring land. He was the priest who had come on horseback to meet the sisters at the riverside."
Father Delacroix gave up his own abode to the nuns and made his quarters in a hut of matting, the entrance to which served both as a door and a window, and which had not sufficient space for a chair. The nuns lived as farm servants, looked after the cattle, planted and harvested maize, cultivated vegetables, gathered their firewood, etc. They subsisted during several months on some flour which they bought on credit, and on a small bull salted. Father Beaunard says, "The bishop used to laugh when he saw the nuns engaged in their homely labors, and asked Madame Ande if it was at Napoleon's court she had learned to milk the cows."
Their house at Fleurissant was made ready for them in the latter part of December, 1819, and the sisters went to it, walking in the snow knee-deep, wrapped in blankets, but shivering with the cold and covered with icicles, driving their cattle, guided only by the tracks of the pigs and other animals. Mother Duchesne wrote of their removal: "The cold deprived us almost of the power of motion. Having tried in vain to lead with a rope one of our cows, I hoped to make her follow us out of her own inclination by filling my apron with maize, with which I tried to tempt her on; but she preferred her liberty, and ran about the fields and brushwood, where we followed her, sinking into the snow, and tearing our habits and veils amidst the bushes. At last we were obliged to let her have her own will and make her way back to the farm. I carried in my pocket our money and papers, but the strings broke, and everything, including a watch, fell in the snow. The wind having blown the snow on my gloves they were frozen on my hands, and I could not take hold of anything. Eugenie had to help me pick up my bag, and also my pocket, which I was obliged to carry under my arm."
The first year at Fleurissant was one of great labor and privation. At one time Mother Duchesne wrote: "There was a moment this month when I had in my pocket only six sous and a half, and debts besides." Gradually, however, their condition and prospects improved, and in May, 1820, the number of their scholars had reached twenty-one, and the idea of establishing a novitiate began to be entertained. In the autumn of that year Mother Duchesne was afflicted with a serious illness, and one of the sisters had the misfortune to break her arm. On the 22d of November their first postulant, Mary Layton, was received, and on the 19th of March, 1821, Emilie St. Cyr and Mary Ann Sumner took the veil. They were followed by Eulalie Hamilton on the first Friday in May, and by her sister Mathilda on the 16th of June, 1821. These accessions greatly encouraged the sisters, and when, soon afterward, the offer was made of a house and its furniture at Grand Coteau, near the Opelousas, it was accepted, and Madame Eugenie Ande, as Superior, and Sister Mary Layton were sent to the place, of which they took possession on the 28th of August, 1821. They were reinforced the same autumn by two nuns from France. Thus was established the first branch from the mother-house at Fleurissant. In the autumn of 1825 another house, at St. Michael, was established, and in 1827 the house at St. Louis, and in 1828 those at Bayou La Fourche and St. Charles.
From that time to the present houses have multiplied, till in different portions of the United States, in Canada, and in South America are to be found many flourishing and magnificent institutions of this order, which had its humble origin in this place in 1819. The novitiate here continued till the spring of 1847, when it was abandoned by the Sisters of the Sacred Heart.
Sisters of Loretto. June 21, 1847, six Sisters of Loretto, Mother Eleonora Clarke, Superior; Sister Philomena, directress of studies; and Sisters Theodosia, Vincentia, Ambrosia, and Stanislaus, assistants, took possession of the establishment which the Sisters of the Sacred Heart had abandoned, and which then consisted of a two-story brick house that had been built by Father Dunand, and some old, dilapidated cabins. These, with three acres of land, they at first rented for one year at two hundred dollars. They subsequently purchased the buildings and five acres of ground for one thousand dollars.
It is proper here to remark that the order of the Sisters of Loretto was founded by Rev. Charles Nerinckx, in 1812, at Hardin's Creek, Washington Co., Ky. At that place Miss Mary Rhodes, a pious young lady, first gathered a little school of girls in a dilapidated cabin, the abandoned residence of a former tenant. Success crowned her efforts, and she was soon joined by Miss Christina Stuart, and subsequently by Miss Nancy Havern. The three pursued their self-sacrificing labors for a time, and were joined by two others, Miss Nellie Morgan and Miss Nancy
Rhodes. A small tract of land was purchased and some rude cabins erected, and soon afterward a sixth young lady, Miss Sally Havern, joined them. They expressed to Father Nerinckx a desire to become nuns and devote themselves to the work of educating young ladies. Their wish met the approbation of Father Nerinckx and the bishop, and they were first made postulants, with a few simple rules for their guidance. On the 25th of April, 1812, the first three postulants Mary Rhodes, Christina Stuart, and Nancy Havern took the veil at the Church of St. Charles, near the infant convent, and they were followed on the 29th of June by Ann Rhodes and Sarah Havern. On the same day Sister Ann Rhodes was constituted "Superior of the novices, and of the Society of the Friends of Mary at the Foot of the Cross." On the same day also was commenced the erection of some log buildings for a convent, school, etc., and when these were completed the place received the name of Loretto, in honor of "Our Lady of Loretto," in Italy. Thus originated the order of the Sisters of Loretto, whose labors have been crowned with such eminent success.
In 1823 application was made by the Rev. Joseph Rosatti for a community of the Sisters of Loretto to establish a boarding-school for girls in Perry County, Mo., near the seminary of the Barrens; and in May of that year five of these sisters, under Mother Benedicta Fenwick, arrived at that place and soon opened a school. The sisters of the order subsequently established schools at Ste. Genevieve, Frederickstown, and Cape Girardeau. They have now several flourishing schools in Missouri, and others in many of the Western States and Territories.
During the thirty-six years of its existence the establishment at Florissant has steadily increased in usefulness and importance, and additions have from time to time been made to the buildings as such additions have become necessary, and now the community here numbers thirty-five sisters. As its school has increased better facilities for instruction have been added, till in 1880 it was deemed advisable to erect a new school building. Accordingly, on the 1st of August in that year, the erection of a new academy was commenced, under the supervision of Mother Ann Joseph, then Superior of the convent, but in August, 1882, elected Superior of the order.
The building was completed in 1882, and dedicated on the 8th of September in that year. It is of brick, and covers an area of one hundred and twenty by eighty feet. It is five stories in height, including the basement. The latter has the refectory, the culinary department, a recreation-room for junior scholars, and the heating and lighting apparatus. It, as well as all the other stories, is traversed each way centrally by corridors ten and twelve feet in width. On the first floor, above the basement, are the study halls, class-rooms, and music-rooms. On the second are the dormitories, oratory, library, and music-rooms. On the third are the exhibition-room, the studio, and the infirmary. On the fourth are the young ladies' wardrobe, the museum, and the astronomical and philosophical apparatus, and on the top is an astronomical observatory. The house is heated by steam, lighted by gas, has water distributed to all parts of it, and, in short, is furnished with all the improvements which modern ingenuity, guided by long experience, has been able to suggest. Two features are particularly noteworthy: the excellent ventilation and the facilities for egress in case of fire. The sisters of the institution planned the building, and its construction was under their supervision. The architect was Mr. Lowery, of St. Louis.
The present Superior is Mother Dafrose.
Novitiate of St. Stanislaus. As early as 1818 Bishop Dubourg requested the provincial of the Jesuits in Maryland to send some of the order to this part of his diocese, for the purpose of establishing a college and taking charge of and conducting missionary work among the Indians. Circumstances prevented a compliance with his request at that time, but in 1823 it was, at the suggestion of John C. Calhoun, then Secretary of War, renewed and favorably considered. Indeed, at this time the provincial was deliberating about the removal of the novices to another locality, and he readily accepted the offer of Bishop Dubourg to donate a farm near Florissant. Rev. Charles Van Quickenborne, master of novices at the establishment in Maryland, was appointed Superior, Rev. Peter J. Timmermans assistant, and seven novices, six of whom were Belgians, who had come to America with the view of joining the Jesuits and engaging in missionary work among the Indians, were designated to come here. Their names were F. J. Van Assche, P. J. De Smet, J. A. Elet, F. L. Verreydt, P. J. Verhaegen, J. B. Smedts, and J. De Maillet. These, with three lay brothers and some negro servants, started on the 11th of April, 1823. They journeyed overland to Wheeling, sleeping in dwellings or outhouses, and generally cooking their own meals. After a brief delay they embarked on two flat-boats and descended the Ohio River to Shawneetown, a short distance below the mouth of the Wabash. Thence they sent their heavy luggage by steamboat to St. Louis, and crossed the prairies of Southern Illinois with a light wagon, the young men performing the journey on foot. This severe part of their trip was
accomplished in seven days. They arrived at St. Louis May 31st, six weeks from the time of starting. On the 3d of June the last of the party reached their destination at Florissant, and were temporarily the guests of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart, who were already established there.
Rev. Walter H. Hill, S. J., in his "History of St. Louis University," gives the following description of the Florissant valley at this time, and of the home to which these Jesuit Fathers and the novices came:
"Florissant, or St. Ferdinand township, was first settled shortly after St. Louis was founded. At the beginning of this century the fields around the village supplied nearly all the grain purchased in the St. Louis market. Florissant valley was famous from the beginning for its beauty and fertility.
"When this region was under the government of Spain, or before the end of the last century, and till a short time before it was transferred to the United States, Florissant was for a time the home of the Spanish Intendant or Governor. His dwelling, which was constructed of cedar logs planted upright on sleepers, into which they were firmly mortised, was torn down only a few years ago, its timbers being still perfectly sound. Its position was nearly in front of the present church at Florissant, and distant from it little more than a hundred and fifty yards. This house was occupied by the Trappist monks in 1809, who had that year closed their two houses in Kentucky, one in Nelson County, the other in Casey County, and removed to Missouri. In 1810 these monks again moved, this time to Looking-Glass Prairie, on Caholda Creek, Ill., and settled upon a mound six miles from the present bridge at St. Louis, on the Collinsville plank-road, this mound still bearing the name of ‘Monks' Mound.’ Sickness and loss by death, together with misfortune caused by fire, compelled the survivors to abandon this malarial district in the spring of 1813, and they then returned to France, whence they had originally come in 1804. Their prior, Rev. Joseph M. Dunand, remained seven years longer in America, or till 1820, residing most of this time at Florissant.
"Father Van Quickenborne and companions took possession of their farm in June, 1823, Mr. O'Neil, magistrate of Florissant, having moved from it for the purpose, kindly ceding his right to retain it longer, although his lease had not expired. The land lying northwest from Florissant slopes gently upward from Cold Water Creek, near the village, till it reaches the highest table of the bluffs overlooking the Missouri River, two and a half miles away. Commencing at the upland, a mile from the river, and declining southeast towards St. Louis, lay the pretty little farm now to be their home, and on one of the highest and most lovely spots of all this scene of rich prairie and rolling woodland stood the humble cabin that was to shelter them. The prospect from this elevated position is both extensive and beautiful, reaching far over the charming valley in which the village is embosomed to the town of St. Charles, on the banks of the Missouri, seven miles distant, and to the white line of rolling cliffs, crowned with trees, that stretch from Alton along the Mississippi River. Throughout this entire Florissant valley the soil is of inexhaustible fertility, rewarding even moderate care and industry with plentiful crops of corn, wheat, timothy, and every variety of garden vegetables suited to the climate. Moreover, it is not only a pleasant district to live in, but it is very healthy, as the numerous instances of longevity among the people there spending their long lives conclusively show.
"The dwelling given up to them by Squire O'Neil was a log cabin, containing one room, which was sixteen by eighteen feet in dimensions, and over it was a loft, but not high enough for a man to stand erect in it, except when directly under the comb of the roof. This poorly-lighted and ill-ventilated loft or garret was made the dormitory of the seven novices, their beds consisting of panels spread upon the floor. The room below was divided into two by a curtain, one part being used as a chapel and the other serving as a bedroom for Fathers Van Quickenborne and Timmermans. This main room of the cabin had a door on the southeast side or front, a large window on the northwest side, without sash or glass, but closed with a heavy board shutter; on the southwest side it had a small window with a few panes of glass, and, finally, on the northeast side was a notable chimney, with a fireplace having a capacity for logs of eight feet in length. At the distance of about eighty feet to the northeast of this dwelling were two smaller cabins, some eight feet apart, one of which was made to serve both as study hall for the novices and as common dining-room for the community; the other was used as kitchen and for lodging the negroes. These rude structures were covered with rough boards held in place by weight-poles; the floors were ‘puncheons,’ and the doors were of riven slabs, and their wooden latches were lifted with strings hanging outside."
A portion only of the farm was then under cultivation, though in front of the house there was a bearing orchard. They at once commenced the work of enlarging and adding to their house, performing the labor with their own hands. The timber for these additions and enlargements was cut on an island in the Mississippi River, a short distance above the Charbonni&eagrave;re.
Rev. Father Van Quickenborne became the spiritual director of the community of the Sacred Heart, and the church at Florissant, which was not then finished, was relinquished to him by Rev. Father Delacroix, who had laid the corner-stone on the 19th of February, 1821.
By the withdrawal of two of the lay brothers and the death of Father Timmermans, which occurred in 1824, the number of the community was reduced to nine; but in 1825, Rev. Father De Theux and Mr. O'Connor, from Maryland, were added, and in 1827, James A. Yates and George Miles, of Kentucky, were admitted as novices.
In 1825 a school for Indian boys was opened, under the charge of the novices, and one fur girls, in charge of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart. These, in 1827, came to number about fourteen children each.
Of the novices who first came to Florissant, J. B. Smedts and P. J. Verhaegen were ordained priests in 1825, and P. J. De Smet, J. F. Van Assche, J. A. Elet, and F. L. Verreydt in 1827.
The missionary work among the Indians, which these men had come hither to engage in, was then entered on with energy, but a few years sufficed to
demonstrate the fact that the good thus accomplished did not meet the expectations of those who had hoped to be able to Christianize and civilize these indolent savages, and although missionary labor was continued, attention was directed to the promotion of education among the white population of the country.
The following history of the novitiate from 1830 to the present time was written for this work by Rev. Walter H. Hill, S. J., who was a novice at the institution:
"Rev. Charles Van Quickenborne was Superior of the mission and of the novitiate from his arrival in 1823 till Feb. 4, 1831. Rev. Theodore De Theux succeeded him, and was Superior till March 24, 1836. At this last date Father P. J. Verhaegen became Superior, but resided at the St. Louis University, except from the summer of 1837 to the spring of 1838, when he was master of novices at the novitiate. Father De Theux was master of novices de facto from 1827 to 1831, and de jure from Feb. 4, 1831, till the summer of 1837. Father Judocus F. Yan Assche occupied the position from 1838 till 1839, when Father De Vos was made master of novices, filling the office till Oct. 3, 1843. Father De Vos was followed by Rev. J. B. Smedts, who remained in office till July 23, 1849, when he was succeeded by Rev. John Gleizel, who remained till July 3, 1857. Then followed Rev. Isidor Boudreaux, who filled the office till Jan. 17, 1880, when he was succeeded by Rev. Leopold Bushart. July 9, 1882, Rev. Frederick Hageman became master of novices, and he still fills the office, Father Bushart having been made provincial. The master of novices is appointed by the general of the society, and is removable by him, though he is usually not removed before filling a term of three years.
"The farm on which the novitiate is situated was given to Father Van Quickenborne and companions in 1823, and it contained two hundred and thirty acres. Adjoining lands were subsequently purchased, so that it now contains six hundred and fifty-five acres, and besides the institution owns another farm of one hundred and twenty-eight acres two miles distant from it. The land extends from Cold Water Creek to the Missouri River, just above the Charbonni&eagrave;re, a distance of more than two miles. More than half of this land is under cultivation; it is naturally fertile, is well cared for, and is, perhaps, the best farm in the Florissant valley.
"The original cabins were occupied till the summer of 1849, when all except the "Indian Seminary" were demolished. The Indian Seminary, a frame building, forty feet by thirty feet, was moved on rollers about eighty feet to the northeast of its former site, and it still stands.
"In 1844 the foundation for a three and a half story stone building was dug; the stones for it were quarried by the lay brothers at Musick's Ferry, seven miles down the Missouri River. This building was not finished till the summer of 1849. I found its walls built to the top of the basement when I reached the novitiate, Feb. 3, 1847. In the spring of 1848 the Creoles of Florissant and the surrounding farms were invited to give one day with their wagons and teams to haul the stone for the building from the quarry; they did so with kindness and hilarity, and a large portion of the stone was placed on the spot in one day.
"The present little mound in the garden at the novitiate, in which the dead are buried, was originally covered with forest-trees. It was cleared and perfected in shape for its present purpose in 1839, when the remains of the few who had previously died were transferred to that spot. There are now eighty-eight graves, thirty-seven priests, thirty-two lay brothers, and nineteen scholastics. Among the dead there buried are Father Van Quickenborne, founder of the mission; his companions, Fathers De Smet, Verhaegen, Van Assche, etc.; also Father Meurin, who died at Prairie du Rocher in February, 1777; of Bizhop Van de Velde, who died in Natchez, Nov. 13, 1855, etc.
"The ‘Indian Seminary,’ founded by Father Van Quickenborne in 1825, was finally closed in 1830, or the year after the opening of the new college in St. Louis, the St. Louis University. The Indian school had not proved a success, the Indian boys preferring the liberty of a wild life in the woods to the restraints of civilized society; they would make their escape and join their tribes roving over the prairies. When the cholera was at its worst in 1832, the students of the St. Louis University were removed for a time to the Indian Seminary at the novitiate.
"The first novices received at St. Stanislaus Novitiate were William Yates and George Miles, both natives of Kentucky. They entered in 1827. Brother Miles still survives, and is residing at St. Charles, Mo. The first scholastic novices were sent for their probation to the novitiate at White Marsh, Prince George's Co., Md. Those received in 1835 and thenceforth were at the St. Stanislaus Novitiate. The novices received during the first twenty years after the commencement of the novitiate were, with few exceptions, Belgians and Hollanders, many of them being drawn to the United States by the influence of the illustrious missionary, Father De Smet.
"In July, 1834, however, four novices were called to Missouri from White Marsh, in order to begin a novitiate at St. Stanislaus. They were Revs. John Schoenmakers and Cornelius Wathis, who were priests, and Revs. J. B. Druyts and J. B. Duerinck, not yet ordained priests; they were all Belgians. Rev. Mr. Schoenmakers, aged seventy-six years, still survives, and he lives at the Osage Mission, Kan., which he founded in 1847. At a later period, and especially after the death of Father De Smet, which took place May 23, 1873, most of the novices were sons of German and Irish parents, but born in the United States. Among the novices was one who was the descendant of a distinguished Delaware chief, the eloquent Father Bushart, now of San Francisco. A small number of Anglo-Americans from Maryland, Virginia, Kentucky, Ohio, Missouri, etc., were novices here at different periods.
"The novitiate has no endowment, and no source of regular income except its excellent farm. It has received donations of money from Belgium. Mainly through the influence of Father De Smet, a gift of thirty thousand dollars in 1869 enabled the institution to erect a large three-story brick building, the foundation of which was dug in 1871, but the cornerstone of which was not laid till July 31, 1873. This additional building was finished in 1874, and the novices moved into it July 2d of that year. It is parallel to the stone building, about sixty feet from it, and the two are connected by a covered bridgeway which stands on pillars and joins the second stories.
"The novitiate was incorporated in accordance with a general law in 1870, under the name and title of ‘the St. Stanislaus Seminary.’ It is subject to the provincial of ‘the Missouri province,’ as are all the institutions and residences of the same province. The provincial resides ordinarily at the St. Louis University, and the Missouri province includes institutions in Missouri, Chicago, Cincinnati, Detroit, Milwaukee, and in the States of Kansas and Nebraska. There are in the Missouri province seven colleges for superior education, having not less than fifteen hundred students in actual attendance. The novitiate is the mother-house of all these establishments, but by a misnomer the St. Louis University is often styled the mother-house, because the provincial resides there."
Town of Bridgeton. 355 Bridgeton is a small town fifteen miles northwest from the court-house in the city of St. Louis. It was incorporated as a town by an act of the Legislature in 1843. The present board of trustees consists of Walter B. Morris, John L. Martin, Patrick O'Malley, George H. W. Heidorn, Thomas J. Baber, and David V. Baber. W. B. Morris, chairman; David V. Baber, secretary; and George H. W. Heidorn, treasurer. John A. Martin, not a member of the board, is collector of revenue.
The town has four churches, a Catholic, a Methodist Episcopal Church South, a Colored Methodist, and a Colored Baptist. There is also the Bridgeton Academy, the board of trustees of which consists of nine members, six chosen from the town and three from the commons, both town and commons being embraced in the district. There is also a colored school, which is a branch of the academy and is under the control of the board of trustees. There are also in the town one general store, one grocery-store, one saloon, one blacksmith-shop, one wagon-shop, and one hotel. The population of the town was in 1880 one hundred and sixty-seven.
Bridgeton is an old place. It was settled at about the same time St. Louis was founded, and was first peopled by French and Spanish settlers. For defense against the Indians there was here in early times a fort, of which William Owens was the commanding officer, and from him the place was called Owens' Station till the time of its incorporation. Among the French of this region it was known in early times as "Ville de Roberts," and as "Marais des Léards," from a marsh in its vicinity. The original survey of the town was made in 1786 by a Frenchman named St. Germain.
The commons of Bridgeton consist of one thousand acres, granted to the town by the Spanish government, and confirmed by the act of Congress of 1812. In 1852 these were leased to individuals for the term of nine hundred and ninety-nine years, at rents varying from ten to twenty-five cents per acre.
BRIDGETON ACADEMY. In 1864 the Bridgeton Academy was incorporated by an act of the Legislature. The district of this institution includes the town and the commons, the revenues from which are appropriated to the support of the school, which is free to all scholars residing within the district. The first school-house was a church building, erected by the Episcopalians, and sold by them to the board of trustees. This was exchanged for the house of worship of the Methodist Episcopal Society, which is now the academy. A colored school is kept as a branch of this academy.
BRIDGETON LODGE, No. 8, F. AND A. M. This lodge was organized under a dispensation in 1845. It received its charter Oct. 14, 1846, with James McClure, W. M.; Benjamin B. Edmondson, S. W.; and Henry Cole, J. W. The lodge first held its
meetings in the house of James McClure, but in 1849 the present lodge-room on Main Street was fitted up.
The Worshipful Masters since James McClure have been Benjamin B. Edmondson, R. T. Edmondson, George R. Moke, J. H. Garret, R. E. Bland, D. L. Bassett, C. L. Young, T. T. Craig, and the present Master, J. H. Garrett. The Senior Warden is S. W. Henley; Junior Warden, D. V. Baber; Secretary, Jefferson Van Gundy; Treasurer, John D. Parsons. The lodge has enjoyed uniform prosperity from the time of its organization. The present membership is thirty-three.
ST. MARY'S CHURCH (CATHOLIC). Mass was first celebrated in Bridgeton by the Jesuit Father J. L. Gleizel, in 1851, in the house of Dr. Moore, now owned by Judge Henderson. In 1852 a mission was established and attended by the following priests: Revs. Dennis Kennedy, 1852; James Murphy, 1856; Park Brady, 1858; Thomas Clary, 1862; L. Smith, 1864; J. B. Jackson, 1865; B. Messelis, S. J., 1867; P. J. Clark, 1868; M. Welby, 1869; Patrick Healy, 1871; E. Smith, 1873; James Dougherty, 1874; F. P. Gallagher, 1876; J. D. Powers, 1877; Jos. Schroeder, the present pastor, 1878. The church edifice was erected by Father Gleizel in 1852. It is a brick structure, fifty by forty-four feet in size. A parsonage was erected near it in 1868 by Rev. Father Messelis. The cemetery adjoins the church.
BRIDGETON METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH SOUTH. It is not known that there was any society of Methodists here prior to 1842, though there were members of that denomination residing here. At about that time a society was organized, and it worshiped at first in the old school-house on the commons. In 1844 a brick church edifice, forty by sixty feet in size, was erected, and in 1855 this was exchanged for the old Episcopal Church, which had been purchased for school purposes. This is a brick building, with a seating capacity of two hundred and fifty. The society has no debt. This was a charge on a circuit till 1872, when it was made a station. Since that time the following clergymen have been in charge here: Revs. F. A. Morris, 1872; J. R. Frazier, 1876; B. R. Thrower, 1878; F. A. Morris, 1878; Joseph Dines, 1881; and the present pastor, W. H. Hensley, 1882.
ST. JOHN'S BAPTIST CHURCH (COLORED). This society was organized in 1870, with forty members and Rev. William Dorsch, pastor. Mr. Dorsch was succeeded in the pastorate in 1873 by Rev. James W. Powell, who left in 1875, since which time the society has been without a pastor. The present membership is forty-two. In 1873 a framed church edifice, with a seating capacity of two hundred, was erected. The church has no debt.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH (COLORED) OF BRIDGETON. This was organized in 1874. The first place of worship was the Ferguson school-house, on the St. Charles Rock road; then the house of J. H. Woolfolk, in Bridgeton. In 1882 a wooden house of worship, twenty-six by thirty-six feet in size, was erected in Bridgeton. The pastors have been Revs. J. H. Woolfolk, 1874; W. E. Wilson, 1878; A. Coleman, 1880; C. M. Keeton, 1881; and the present pastor, B. Pullum, 1882. The membership is twenty, and the church has no debt.
Pattonville. This village is located on the St. Charles Rock road at its junction with the Fee-Fee road, fourteen miles from St. Louis. A post-office had been in existence here under the name of Fee-Fee, which is said by some to be a French corruption of the word fife, which was the original name of Fee-Fee Creek. No village existed here prior to 1869. A blacksmith-shop was started by T. T. Lucas in 1860. In 1866 this shop was converted into a carriage manufactory, and in 1869 a church and store were built, and within a year another church was erected. These buildings, with a few residences, comprise the present village. A post-office was established in 1876. It was named Pattonville, from a family by the name of Patton that resided here. In 1879 a fine school building was erected near the village, in which an excellent school is maintained.
The Lucas carriage-factory at Pattonville was first a small blacksmith-shop, started by Thomas T. Lucas in 1860. In 1865 this shop was removed and enlarged, and the manufacture of carriages, at first on a small scale, was commenced. From that time to the present the business has steadily increased, till now sixty vehicles of all kinds are annually made. In 1879 the manufacture of sulky plows was added to the business, and since that time two hundred of these have been turned out from the establishment.
MIZPAH PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH, at Pattonville, was organized Nov. 20, 1842. The original constituent members were James Patton, Agnes Patton, George Patton, James Quinsenburg, George L. Lackland, Eliza E. Lackland, Ann Lackland, Jacob Brown, Ellen B. Brown, Joseph Brown, and Sarah McClure.
The place of worship during nearly thirty years was the old Fee-Fee Baptist Church, half a mile from Pattonville. In 1869 the name of the society was changed to its present designation. The present house of worship at Pattonville was erected in 1870. It is a brick structure with a stone basement, and it covers
an area of fifty-five by thirty-eight feet. In 1870 a parsonage was erected near the church. Ten acres of ground are included in the lot on which these buildings stand, and the cost of the property was ten thousand dollars. The society has no debt.
The pastors of this church have been Revs. R. Finley, 1843; John Lyon, 1847; Beebe, 1848; Pettigrew. 1849; H. A. Booth, 1850; Noble, 1857; T. C. Smith, 1860; W. J. Lapsley, 1868; Alfred E. Grover, 1876; William M. Stratton, 1878; and the present pastor, T. C. Barrett, 1880.
Ferguson. Ferguson Station is at the junction of the Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific Railroad with a branch running to Union Depot, St. Louis. The place had little importance previous to 1878, but at about that time a rapid growth commenced, and now it contains about sixty families. It has a post-office, a hotel, two stores, three machine-shops, and two churches. The population is largely composed of railroad employés and their families, who find here a convenient and pleasant place of residence. By reason of the absence of marshes in the vicinity and the excellent quality of the water, the village is remarkably healthy.
ST. JOHN'S CHURCH. Of the churches in Ferguson, St. John's (Catholic) is now (1882) in process of erection. It will be a neat wooden structure, with a seating capacity of three hundred and fifty. Rev. Father D. S. Phelan is the pastor.
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH. The Presbyterian Church at Ferguson Station was erected about 1873. It is a tasteful frame edifice, with a seating capacity of between three and four hundred. The society has been supplied by different clergymen, and with commendable liberality it has opened the doors of its house of worship to other denominations.
PUBLIC SCHOOL. In 1877-78 a brick building was erected for a public school. It has two schoolrooms on the first floor, and in the second story a hall, which is to be divided into school-rooms as future exigencies require. The cost of the building was fifty-six thousand dollars. A Kindergarten school is also kept in the village.
The place has one physician and three attorneys, one of whom, T. G. Allen, is a State senator, and another, C. P. Ellerby, is a member of the House of Representatives in the State.
In 1882 a cheese-factory was erected in the village, with all the latest improved machinery and appliances for establishments of that kind. It has facilities for handling three thousand gallons of milk daily, and for cooling the milk it has an ice-machine with a daily capacity of three tons of ice.
It is the property of a stock company, with J. C. Cabanné manager. This company has adopted the plan of furnishing farmers in the vicinity with cows on conditions arranged between the parties.
Black Jack, about three miles east from Florissant, is a hamlet containing two stores and two mechanics' shops. It has a post-office, and is in a fine farming region. It was named from the abundance of the species of oak known in common parlance as "black jack" which grows there.
Brotherton was formerly a small village on the bank of the Missouri River, opposite to St. Charles. It was named from Marshall Brotherton, who owned the land and established a ferry there between St. Charles and the terminus of the St. Charles Rock road. The river has so encroached on the land that the little village has nearly disappeared.
Boufils is a post office on the Wabash and Kansas City Railroad, sixteen miles from St. Louis.
The township of Bonhomme lies between St. Ferdinand, Central, and Carondelet townships on the east and Meramec on the west. The Missouri River forms its extreme northern boundary, and it joins Jefferson County on the south. Its greatest length between north and south is sixteen miles, and it has an average width of eight and one-half miles, and it includes an area of about one hundred and twenty square miles.
Its surface is rolling, but while it is more uneven than that of the townships lying east of it, it is less hilly than that of Meramec on the west. A watershed divides it between north and south, passing through nearly its central portion. Its northern part is drained by Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Creek, the waters of which pass through the lake of the same name, to empty into the Missouri River. Meramec River pursues a tortuous course through the southern part of the township, and receives affluents on both sides. Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake is in the northern part, about one mile from the Missouri River. This lake has a length of between two and three miles, and an average width of about half a mile. A short distance west from this is a smaller body of water known as Upper Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake, connected with its larger neighbor by a small stream. The origin of the name of this lake, like that of the township, is involved in uncertainty. Many legends have been written or told concerning both, but all these bear such unmistakable evidences that imagination rather than reality was a prominent factor in their production that even their partial acceptance must be with many grains of allowance.
Elsewhere an account is given of the improvements that have recently been made at this lake, and the prediction is safe that this will become an important point in the not distant future.
The township is traversed by several highways, which, pass through it from west to east, and converge toward the city of St. Louis. The Central or Olive Street road passes westwardly through the northern part of the township, and unites near its western boundary with the Conway road, which comes from St. Louis and traverses the township farther south. Through the central portion passes the Manchester road, which is the principal avenue of travel and transportation for the people living some distance north and south from it. The Clayton road passes through the township between the Manchester and Conway roads, and unites with the latter in Central township. The Gravois road crosses the southeastern corner of the township. These are rock roads, and are the avenues of transportation to market for the produce that is raised in the township.
The Missouri Pacific Railroad crosses the southern portion of the township, running for some distance nearly parallel with the Meramec River. This is of course the great avenue of communication between that part of the township and St. Louis.
The early settlers in the northern portion of the township were Joseph Conway, who was scalped by the Indians in Kentucky during the Revolution, but who recovered, migrated to this township, and was the progenitor of the Conway family here; James Kincaid, Jonathan Wiseman, Smith, Greene B. Baxter, Hempstead, Hibler, Cordell, Frederick Bates, afterwards Governor of the State; Lanham, John Ball, Henry Mason, one of the first magistrates; William Bacon, William Hannah, and others whose names cannot be recalled.
In the southern part were Eoff, George and Robert King, John Hardecker, James Richardson, Archibald Harbison, Thomas Keebly, Nathan Shotwell, Thomas Williams, George Sipp, Caleb Bowles, Rudder, Longwith, Samuel T. Vandover, John McLaughlin, Jabez Ferris, Peter Breen, Kuntz, Samuel Stowey, Richard Low, Jones, and others. These early settlers were mostly immigrants from Kentucky and Virginia. At the time they settled here the township was principally prairie, and the wild denizens of the region abounded. All these people, as they slept in their cabins, were serenaded by the wolves, and their corn-fields and pig-pens were often invaded by bears. The wants of these early inhabitants were not as numerous as those of people in later times, and the abundant resources of the fertile soil readily supplied the few which they felt, and they were contented and happy. The population of the township was in 1850, 1842; 1860, 3629; 1870, 6162; 1880, 7043.
The pioneer mills in the township were what were known as horse mills. They were introduced at a very early date, and took the place of the primitive mortars for grinding corn. They were established in various parts of the township, and it was not till a comparatively recent period that steam-mills took their place. A short distance from Fenton a steam grist-mill was erected by William Head about 1854. It existed only a few years. In 1852, Smizer's gristmill and distillery was erected on the Meramec River, a mile south from Meramec Station. This establishment ceased to be operated twenty years since, and the building has been converted into a barn.
At Meramec Station, on the Missouri Pacific Railroad, is located the Meramec Mill. This was first built in 1874 by G. H. Timmerman, with two run of stones, one for flour and one for corn. It was both a custom and a merchant mill, and another run of stones was soon added. C. F. Leonard afterward purchased the mill, and added to it another run of stones for grinding wheat. In June, 1881, H. B. Eggers purchased the establishment, and added to its former machinery seven sets of rollers, with other machinery, for the manufacture of roller flour. The machinery is driven by an engine of eighty horsepower, and the daily capacity of the mill is two hundred barrels of flour. It is wholly a merchant mill. A cooperage is attached to it, and eighteen hands are employed at the establishment. An elevator is in process of construction, and this, when completed, will have a capacity of thirty thousand bushels.
Bonhomme Presbyterian Church. Bonhomme Church was organized by Rev. S. Giddings, Oct. 16, 1816, with sixteen members. It was the second Presbyterian Church that was established west of the Mississippi River, Concord (Bellevue) Church having been organized on the 3d of the preceding August.
During ten years the church had a hard struggle for existence. Its membership in 1825 was fourteen, and in 1827 it was dissolved and its members united with the church at St. Louis. It was reorganized, with ten members, by Rev. John S. Ball, Nov. 5, 1828, and in 1831 the membership had increased to fifteen.
The records of the church were burned some years since, but it is remembered that during many years it owned no house of worship, and that its services were held in private residences and school-houses. The present church edifice, which stands at the junction
of the Conway and White roads, eighteen miles from St. Louis, was erected about 1840 by Messrs. James Sappington and John Baxter, under the superintendence of Judge Joseph Conway. It is a stone building with a basement, and its size is thirty by forty-four feet. Services have been regularly held in this building since its erection.
The first clergyman who ministered to this church was Mr. Giddings, who visited it from St. Louis from time to time. Soon after its reorganization in 1828, a young licentiate named Hodges was engaged to preach to the congregation for a year, but he died before the expiration of that time. The next preacher was Rev. John Gilbreath, under whose ministrations the church grew and prospered during a number of years. He was followed by a Mr. Beebe, who remained but a short time. Next came Rev. John Lyon, a native of Philadelphia, and a young man of great promise, but his health soon failed, and he was taken by his friends to the place of his nativity, where he soon afterwards died. He was succeeded by Rev. R. P. Farris, of St. Louis, a talented preacher and an able writer. Revs. Henry A. Booth, William H. Parks, A. Shotwell, and James A. Smith followed in order. The present membership of the church is fifty.
Evangelical Lutheran St. John's Church is located at Ellisville, a hamlet on the Manchester road, in the western part of Bonhomme township. It was organized in 1852 with only a few constituent members, and services were first held at Ballwin in private houses. In 1854 a small log church was built a mile and a half southwest from Ballwin, and in this the society worshiped during seventeen years. In 1871 a brick church edifice, thirty by fifty feet, was erected on the south side of the Manchester road at Ellisville. The building cost four thousand three hundred dollars, and it is not encumbered with a debt. In 1872 a brick parsonage was built at a cost of eleven hundred dollars. A parochial school building was erected near the church in 1878. A parochial school had been maintained during fifteen years prior to the erection of this building, and in this school instruction has been given in the German and English languages, and now forty scholars on an average are taught in it.
The clergymen who have served this congregation have been, in succession, Revs. J. A. F. W. Mueller, Lehmann, F. P. Pennekamp, Theodore Burzin, August Schnessler, and the present pastor, E. T. Richter. The membership is fifty.
St. Monica's Church (Catholic) at Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur was erected and the parish organized in 1872, and mass was first celebrated on Christmas of that year. The parish was founded and the church erected by Rev. H. Muhlsiepen, vicar-general. The church edifice is a neat brick structure, with a seating capacity of one hundred and twenty, and its cost was two thousand five hundred dollars. In 1873 the Franciscan Fathers took charge of the parish, and continued till 1881, when Rev. Joseph Diel became resident pastor. In June of the same year Rev. H. S. Aertler, the present pastor, assumed charge. The parsonage was erected in the autumn of 1881, at a cost of two thousand dollars. A parochial school was established in 1873, and a brick school building was erected near the church. In this a school has ever since been maintained, and the average attendance is forty. Instruction is given in both the German and English languages. The congregation consists of sixty-five families.
Christian Church of Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur. A society of this denomination was organized in the vicinity of Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur in 1875, with twenty members. It has built no house of worship, but has held services in the Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur school-house. The pastors of the society have been Revs. J. H. Garrison, 1875; J. H. Stuart, 1878; and the present pastor, J. H. Owen, 1880.
Manchester 356 was settled very early in the present century, but for many years it was only a small village. The first ettler in the town was an Indian named Bryson O'Hara, who built a cabin at Manchester Spring, and resided there several years, subsisting by hunting, making ox-bows, ox-yokes, etc. The place was first called Hoardstown, from Jesse Hoard, who came quite early from Kentucky and located on the corner of the Manchester road and Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Street. The place was called by that name till about 1825, when it began to be spoken of by its present title. An Englishman who settled there about that time christened it Manchester, from the place of his residence in England, and it gradually came to be thus designated by every one. A store was established there at an early date by Douglass, on the north side of the rock road, a short distance east from Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Street, in a log building, which was at the same time a store and a residence. By the side of this store was a blacksmithshop, which was carried on by William Triplet, who came here in 1816 or 1817 from Kentucky. He was a blacksmith in Manchester till his death, and was an active, influential citizen.
Caleb Carman came from Kentucky to Manchester in 1818, and established a saddlery and harness-shop, where he conducted the business during many years.
He was an excellent mechanic, and to the manufacture of saddles and harnesses he afterwards added the business of carriage trimmings.
About one hundred yards east from Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Street, on the south side of the rock road, Isaac McFadden established a shoe-shop in 1818 in a log house, which was also a dwelling. He was the only shoemaker in Manchester during many years. He died at the house of John Shotwell in 1856.
Samuel Hindman came from Kentucky and set up a tannery. This tannery came to be the property of Robert Buchanan and Henry Rollins, who carried on tanning extensively, and in connection with it the manufacture of boots and shoes. At times they employed as many as twelve men in the business. The tannery ceased to be operated in 1860.
Between Carman's saddlery and Triplet's blacksmith-shop Starks Cockrill resided in a log house, a portion of which is still standing, and kept a house of entertainment for travelers. This was the first tavern in Manchester.
Samuel Berry, also a Kentuckian, and, as well as the others, from May's Lick, Mason Co., in that State, carried on the manufacture of brick as early as 1822. His yard was on the south side of the rock road, east from Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Street. He not only moulded and burned bricks, but was a bricklayer, and built most of the chimneys that were erected in this vicinity during many years.
In 1820 a carding-machine was brought from Kentucky by James Neale and put in a log building that was erected for the purpose in the rear of Mr. Triplet's house, which stood in the rear of his blacksmith-shop. This machine was propelled by an inclined wheel that was turned by the weight of horses. It was used till 1839, when the building was converted into a church.
Martin Shelton resided in the house that was built by Mr. Hoard, and followed the business of teaming. In those days, and for many years afterwards, all the goods that were sold in Manchester and other places that sprang up in its vicinity were brought by teams of horses or oxen from St. Louis over what is now the Manchester Rock road, and produce was conveyed to market in the same manner. Mr. Shelton followed this business, which would now be called freighting, during many years.
In addition to these an old man named Kuntz and his wife resided here in 1826, and these constituted the sum total of the families in the place at that time. This Mr. Kuntz was from Pennsylvania, and had located at what is now Meramec Station many years before, and carried on a distillery there.
In 1830, Burns established the first tailor's shop in Manchester. His shop was a log building near Cockrill's log tavern, on the same side of the street. These were the pioneers in the different kinds of business in the town. Its growth was during many years slow; as the country around it became settled it had a gradual increase, but in 1880 its population numbered only three hundred and six.
The first frame building in Manchester was erected in 1830 by James Robinson for a hotel, and it was kept as such during many years. It is now known as the "Old Hotel," and stands on the south side of the road, east from Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Street.
No great manufacturing industry ever sprang up in this place, and there has been only a local trade to make it a town. The travel that formerly passed through the town has since the Missouri Pacific Railroad went into operation been diverted from this route, and only local travel passes through it now.
In 1850 a brewery was established in Manchester by a Mr. Spoeri. It was located on the south side of the road, at the corner of Church Street. It was conducted a few years by Mr. Spoeri, and then purchased by a Mr. Hock. After the death of Mr. Hock the establishment was idle for a time, and was then started by Tobias Fisher. He was succeeded by F. Heim & Co., who purchased the property and conducted the business during two years, at the end of which they were succeeded by Michael Hollocker. He sold the establishment in 1866 to F. Smith, who carried on the business till 1867, when the building was destroyed by fire. It was immediately rebuilt, smaller, and the business was conducted by Mr. Smith till 1870, when it was again burned, and was never rebuilt.
A saw-mill was erected on the present site of the Monitor Flouring-Mill in 1855 by Frederick Barton. It was not long used as a saw-mill, but additions were made to it and it was converted into a grist-mill the next year. About ten years later it was burned, and another and larger mill was erected in its place by Jacob Schriner. This was a merchant mill, and had four run of stones. It was burned, and was succeeded by the Monitor Roller-Mill, which was erected by John Gregg in 1881 on the site of the mill that was burned. It is a frame building, thirty-two by sixty feet in size and three stories in height above the basement. It has three run of stones and six sets of rollers, and its capacity is one hundred and fifty barrels of flour in twenty-four hours. The machinery is propelled by an engine of sixty-five horse-power. It is wholly a merchant mill, and about one-half the flour manufactured in it is sold in the surrounding country.
The balance is sent to St. Louis. A cooperage is attached to the mill, and the total number of hands employed in the establishment is eight.
Manchester now has two general stores, two groceries, one variety store, one drug-store, one flour and feed store, one boot and shoe store, one hotel, three blacksmith-shops, two tin-shops, one tailor-shop, three shoe-shops, two wagon-shops, one cabinet-shop, one meat-market, and one physician.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH SOUTH. In the absence of any records of an earlier date than 1867, it is not possible to learn the early history of this society. It is known that services by Methodist clergymen were held at a very early date in private houses and barns, before a school-house was erected in this vicinity. A society was formed long since, and preaching was supplied by circuit preachers. This has at times been a station and again a charge on a circuit as changing circumstances have required. A house of worship for this society was first fitted up in 1827, when John Ball purchased a building that had been used for a carding-machine, and seats and a gallery were arranged in it. It was used as a church till 1839, when it was sold to Mr. Triplet, and by him converted into a barn. In that year a small framed church was erected near the site of the present house of worship of the society. It was used till 1859, when the present edifice was built. It is of brick with a stone basement, and is forty by sixty feet in size. It is pleasantly located on an elevation a short distance from the Manchester road.
ST. MALACHY'S CATHOLIC CHURCH was organized in 1839 with only a few members. During many years it was visited by priests from the Cathedral at St. Louis, and afterwards from St. Peter's Church at Gravois (Kirkwood). Among those who ministered to this congregation may be named Revs. Jacob Meller and H. Van der Senden. In 1869, Rev. H. V. Kalmer was appointed parish priest, followed by Revs. James Becker, 1874; A. Mayer, 1875 (died); P. Bonaventura, O. S. F., and P. Matthias, O. S. F., 1875; H. V. Kalmer, 1876; J. F. M. Diel, 1881.
The present church building was erected in 1851. In 1869 a parsonage was purchased for twelve hundred dollars, and the next year an organ was procured at a cost of six hundred dollars, and a lot for a cemetery was bought for eight hundred and twenty-five dollars.
A parochial school has been maintained by this congregation since 1851, first in the church, then in a room in the pastor's residence, and in 1871 a building for the purpose was erected. The present teacher is J. H. L. Kotthoff.
ST. JOHANNES' EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH was organized in 1867 with fifteen members. The first place of worship was a dwelling-house that was purchased and fitted up for the purpose on the site of the present church, a short distance from the rock road. In 1869 the present church edifice was erected at an expense of two thousand dollars. It is a tasteful wooden structure, thirty by fifty feet in size. A parsonage near the church was built in 1871 at a cost of five hundred dollars. The present membership is thirty-two. The pastors have been Revs. Frederick Koeving, 1867; Armen Hauf, 1869; Ries, 1869; William Stoeffor, 1871; and the present pastor, Frederick Schmidt, 1878.
MAENNERCHOR AND OTHER SOCIETIES. At a picnic held on the 4th of July, 1880, by the German population of Manchester, the subject of forming a singing society was agitated, and as a result a meeting for the purpose was held on the 8th of the same month, at which the Maennerchor was organized by the adoption of a constitution and the election of the following officers: William Schroeder, president; Charles Schroeder, vice-president; William Kruse, treasurer; and Henry Seibel, secretary. The object of the society, as set forth in its constitution, was "the cultivation of vocal music and a refined social intercourse among its members."
For the want of a better place the society met during a year and a half in a room over a blacksmith's shop. In 1881 a Saenger Hall, thirty-six by fifty feet in size, was erected, finished in appropriate style, and dedicated on Christmas-day of that year.
The society was incorporated on the 14th of February, 1882, and it has since, as well as before, been highly prosperous, and an addition to the hall has become necessary. It was the pioneer institution of the kind in the county of St. Louis. The present number of members is seventy-four. The presidents of the society have been William Schroeder, Charles Schroeder, and the present incumbent of the office, Henry Steffen. The musical directors have been Caspar Roesslein and the present director, H. W. Dreyer.
On the 4th of July, 1882, the society was presented by the ladies of Manchester with a silk banner, the cost of which was one hundred dollars.
Bonhomme Lodge, No. 45, F. and A. M., was organized in the early part of 1841, with Peter Kincaid, W. M.; A. C. Tindal, S. W.; Lewis Dozier, J. W.; I. F. Hale, Sec.; William Bassett, Treas.; Frederic L. Billon, S. D.; Vespian Ellis, J. D.; and Caleb Carman, Tyler.
The first lodge-room was in the old hotel that was
built in 1830. The Past Worshipful Masters have been, in succession, Peter Kincaid, Dr. William Basset, I. F. Hale, H. H. Duval, John Shotwell, Dr. A. B. Barbee, W. D. Clayton, Vincent Henderson, Dr. James H. Hall, Thomas Ennis, James M. Brewer, John H. Brewer, Charles McQuerry, and Dr. G. W. Wyatt.
The present officers are Kennett Shotwell, W. M.; Dr. Clay Wyatt, S. W.; James M. Brewer, Sec.; John D. Woody, Treas.; John H. Brewer, Tyler. The lodge has been prosperous from the first.
Manchester Lodge, No. 435, K. of H., was instituted Jan. 29, 1877, with ten members. The first officers were George Straszer, P. D.; James M. Brewer, D.; William Overbeck, V. D.; C. H. Corbin, A. D.; R. Paderistecher, R.; R. M. Higgins, F. R. The P. D.'s have been, in succession, J. Brewer, R. M. Higgins, Henry Dietrich, George Straszer, Jacob S. Gates, Jacob Eschenbrenner, J. H. Schaberg, and William Overbeck. The present officers are J. H. Schaberg, P. D.; William Overbeck, D.; Jacob S. Gates, V. D.; Henry Seibel, A. D.; George Straszer, R.; Henry Dietrich, F. R. The lodge has a membership of thirty-eight, and has a surplus of two hundred dollars in its treasury.
St. George's Branch, No. 24, of the Catholic Knights of America, was organized June 5, 1882, with thirteen members. The officers are Victor Nichols, president; S. J. Clark, vice-president; William Kurtenback, secretary; and Bernard Schuh, treasurer. It is a life insurance and general aid society.
Ballwin is a town of three hundred inhabitants on the Manchester road, twenty miles west from St. Louis. It derived its name from John Ball, who in 1804 came here and located a farm where the village now is. In 1837 he laid out the town in blocks, each two hundred and nine feet square, and consisting of four lots. One of these blocks was relinquished to the town for a Methodist Episcopal Church, and another adjoining it for a burial-ground. The lots thus laid out were sold as they were required by those who came to make the town their residence, but the early growth of the place was not rapid. Ten years after it was founded there was a store here, kept by Thomas Nichols, also a tavern by John C. Hartman, and a blacksmith-shop, carried on by Henry Harman. At that time there were twelve dwellings in the town. Since then its growth has been gradual and steady till it has reached its present size. An addition to the town of nine blocks has been made, and all have been sold. There are now here four general stores, two hotels, a saddler, two shoemakers, a cabinet-maker, and two blacksmiths.
In 1849, Frederick Schelp established at Ballwin a manufactory of wagons and agricultural implements in a small way. The business gradually increased till 1854, when the establishment was burned. It was immediately rebuilt on a larger scale and the business continued.
In 1873 a new and larger shop was rebuilt in place of this, which was demolished. Since that time facilities have been added as the business has increased, till nine hands are constantly employed. The manufacture of light carriages has been added to the business, for the supply of the home market and for shipping. Since 1881 the business has been conducted by the firm of F. Schelp & Sons.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH. A Methodist Episcopal Society was first organized here in 1846, consisting of twelve members. The first place of worship was a small log building erected by Mr. Ball for church and school purposes. In 1855 a frame church building, twenty-four by thirty feet, was erected at a cost of one thousand dollars. This was used till 1870, when it was converted into a public school-house, and the present tasteful brick edifice was erected. This stands on the Main Street of the town, is thirty-five by fifty-five feet in size, and cost four thousand five hundred dollars. The society owes no debt.
The pastors who have served this society have been Revs. H. Hahman, 1846; John Keck, 1848; John Hoebner, 1849; H. Ellerbeck, 1850; C. Hoeck, 1851; W. Bollert, 1853; H. Toelle, 1854; C. Bonn, 1855; H. W. Schmidt, 1857; W. Koenicke, 1858; W. Floreth, 1860; G. Boeseng, 1862; John Roelle, 1864; Henry Meyer, 1867; U. Roeder, 1868; W. Schwind, 1871; C. Ska, 1873; J. M. Dewein, 1874; H. Pfaff, 1877; W. Schwind, 1879; Th. Hehner, 1881. The membership is eighty-one.
MISSIONARY BAPTIST CHURCH (COLORED) of Ballwin was organized about thirty-five years since. In the absence of records but little can be learned of its history. It has a framed house of worship, and about twenty members. The pastors that are remembered were Revs. Emmanuel Cartwright, Willis Stafford, and Tinley Lucas.
ST. MATTHEW'S LODGE, F. AND A. M. (Colored), was organized in June, 1881, with Moses G. Mass, W. M.; Samuel Taggart, S. W.; and Frank Darby, J. W., and five members. It has now sixteen members, and James Powell is W. M.; Frank Darby, S. W., and Thomas Salerne, J. W.
Fenton, The town of Fenton was laid out early in the present century by William Long, and was named in honor of the female branch of his family.
During many years it had very little the appearance of a village; no more than two families resided there till 1838. In that year a store and a saw-mill were erected at this place by James Hibbert, and in 1842, Samuel T. Vandover and David Sigler established small stores (Mr. Hibbert having removed) in log buildings, neither of which is now standing. At about the same time when Mr. Vandover opened his store he started the first blacksmith-shop here, and during many years the village consisted of no more than six families. In 1833, Mr. Vandover, Caleb Bowles, Samuel Rudder, and several other residents of the vicinity established a private ferry over the Meramec River, on the south side of which the town is located, and in 1835, Jabez Ferris established at this point the first public ferry, which he conducted till his death in 1848, after which Mr. Vandover and Mr. Bowles carried it on till the erection of the bridge over the river here. This bridge was built in 1854-55 by a company that was chartered by the Legislature. Of this company Samuel T. Vandover was the first president, followed in 1862 by Isaac Sullens. The bridge was built by J. C. Hall, contractor, and its cost was nineteen thousand dollars. By a provision in the charter the county might at any time become the owner of this bridge by paying for the stock held by individuals. This was done in 1874, and the bridge became free. It is a wooden Howetruss bridge, built on piers, and it has a length of four hundred and eighty feet. This bridge affords a crossing for the Gravois road, which connects Fenton directly with St. Louis. The town has grown to its present size (about one hundred and fifty inhabitants) within the last twelve years. In 1882 a fire occurred which consumed four buildings in the centre of the town.
Fenton was incorporated Dec. 28, 1874. The first board of trustees was composed of Jacob Fritschle, James M. Bowles, Charles Williams, Henry Temper, and E. J. Thurman. The presidents of the board have been Jacob Fritschle, 1874; E. J. Thurman. 1876; Henry Temper, 1877; John Desalme, 1879; Henry Temper, 1880; John Desalme, 1882. The clerks of the board have been James M. Bowles, 1874; Anthony Roberts, 1876; and Frederick Wehmeyer, 1879. The town has two stores, one hotel, one drug-store, one wagon-shop, one blacksmith-shop, one shoe-shop, and two physicians.
Many years since a saw-mill was built at Fenton. On the foundation of this, in 1872, James Halpine erected a corn- and flour-mill, and this he sold to Henry Temper in 1875. On the site of this Mr. Temper in 1878 erected the present Fenton Flouring-Mill. It is a frame building, forty-two by twenty-four feet, besides the stone engine-house which adjoins it. It has three run of stones and a set of rollers, and the machinery is driven by an engine of fifty horse-power. It is a merchant mill, and the flour manufactured here is sold in St. Louis and in various other markets in this region. About twenty thousand barrels of flour are annually manufactured in this mill. The barrels for this flour are made in a cooperage which is carried on by Mr. Temper. Twelve hands are constantly employed at this establishment.
FENTON METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH SOUTH. At an early day a class was in existence in the vicinity of Fenton, and the name of William Brock is remembered as one of the early leaders of this class. Thomas Williams is remembered as the first local preacher here.
A society was organized about 1830, and services were held in the houses of Thomas Williams and others in the vicinity. A small log church, which is still standing, was erected on the Gravois road previous to 1840, and here the society worshiped till 1860. In that year the present church edifice was erected in Fenton. It is a neat frame building, thirty by thirty-five feet in size, and its cost was one thousand dollars, which was paid before the dedication of the church, and the society has now no debt.
In 1844 the society became divided, a portion affiliating with the Methodist Episcopal Church North. This schism has ceased to exist. A portion of the records of this society have been lost or mislaid, but the following names of preachers who have served the church are remembered: Revs. J. N. W. Springer, William Alexander, T. M. Cobb, George W. Horn, Nathaniel Talbott, John W. Robinson, and J. M. Clayton. Others whose names cannot be recalled have officiated here.
ST. PAUL'S (CATHOLIC) CHURCH, FENTON. A church building was erected in Fenton in 1879, and services were first held in it on Christmas in that year. It is a wooden building, thirty-two by twenty-six, and its cost was thirteen hundred dollars.
The congregation consists of about forty families, one-half of whom are German, and services are held in both German and English. The congregation is served by the pastor of St. Peter's Church in Kirkwood. Although this is a young organization, it has no debt.
FENTON LODGE, No. 281, F. AND A. M., was organized May 2, 1868. The charter members were H. S. Jacobi, W. M.; Stelham, S. W.; A. Bowles, J. W.; T. S. Long, S. D.; James Bowles, J. D.; John R. Vandover, Sec.; William L. Pipkin,
Treas.; John T. Hawkins, Tyler; William Barnett, Martin C. Helterbrandt, Thomas Byrns, Leonidas Wilson, Larkin Williams, W. A. Pratt, and S. B. Belew, nearly all of whom came from Bonhomme Lodge, No. 45, at Manchester.
The Past Masters have been H. S. Jacobi, Anderson Bowles, T. S. Long, James A. Bowles, Samuel T. Vandover, H. F. Steinhauer, B. F. Holcombe, E. J. Thurman.
The present officers are H. F. Steinhauer, W. M.; William Stafford, S. W.; David Bowles, J. W.; John H. Wilkins, Sec.; Henry Temper, Treas.; George W. Anderson, S. D.; Jeremiah Strickland, J. D.; and John McDonald, Tyler.
The lodge has always met in its own hall. It has one thousand dollars invested. The present membership is fifty-one.
FENTON LODGE, No. 180, A. O. U. W., was organized in February, 1880, with the following charter members: Frank Stowe, P. M. W.; George W. Anderson, M. W.; John Brummer, F.; Albert Cable, O.; William Brethold, R.; Frederic Schisler, F.; Peter Brossard, E., Frank Weber, G.; Andrew Payne, I. W.; William Kohler, O. W.; Peter Barton, Charles Heller, Henry Hoffmeister, William Schisler, Otto Spitz, William Young, and John Zufall.
The presiding officers of the lodge have been George W. Anderson, Frank Stowe, John H. Wilkins. The present officers are Cornelius Dillon, M. W.; Otto Spitz, F.; John Stouse, O.; William Brethold, R. and F.; Peter Brossard, R.
One death has occurred in the lodge since its organization. The membership is twenty-five, and the lodge is prosperous.
Kirkwood. 357 "The town of Kirkwood was founded in the early part of the year 1853. During that year the Pacific Railroad was in process of construction. H. W. Leffingwell, R. S. Elliott, and others, being impressed with the necessity of a suburban home for families who desired pure air, and to rear their children away from the contaminating influences of a large city, initiated a movement to build a town on some high, healthy locality on the line of the Pacific Railroad, a short distance from and easily accessible to St. Louis.
"An association was organized composed of forty persons, including many of the best men of St. Louis, for the purpose of selecting and purchasing a site for the town. This duty was by the association assigned to H. W. Leffingwell and William R. Pry. They examined several eligible localities east of the one finally selected, but at last determined to ‘cast their lots’ among the beautiful groves where since has grown the pleasant and substantial town of Kirkwood.
"They purchased of Owen Collins one hundred and twenty acres for twelve thousand dollars, of Thomas Wash eighty acres for six thousand four hundred dollars, and A. S. Mitchell forty acres for three thousand dollars, making two hundred and forty acres for the town site, at a cost of twenty-one thousand four hundred dollars.
"The grounds were then surveyed and divided into forty blocks, and these blocks sub-divided into lots, and wide avenues and one street were laid out at right angles, as follows: Beginning on the north and going south were established the avenues named Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Madison, and Monroe, with Main Street located between Jefferson and Madison Avenues; on the west and going east, Jackson, Van Buren, Harrison, Clay, Webster, Taylor, and Fillmore Avenues, leaving off the names of some of our illustrious Presidents and substituting the no less illustrious names of Clay and Webster.
"The hotel block they then located on the west side of the town block bounded by Webster, Jefferson, and Taylor Avenues and Main Street, and a hotel of rare architectural beauty, fronting on Main Street, was erected at a cost of fourteen thousand dollars. This hotel was destroyed by fire in December, 1867.
"The lots were sold at auction May 26, 1853, the prices ranging from two hundred dollars to seven hundred dollars per acre. The name of the town was then to be selected, and the very appropriate and euphonious name of ‘Kirkwood’ was proposed by Mr. R. S. Elliott and adopted by the association, partly from respect to James P. Kirkwood, then chief engineer of the Pacific Railroad, and partly in view of the fact that the building of churches (kirks) in the wood or groves of the town was already contemplated, thus suggesting Kirkwood.
"The year following there were added to the town blocks on the east and south, divided by the following streets and avenues: On the east, Smith and Walker Streets and Clark and Holmes Avenues; on the south, Scott, Elliott, and Leffingwell Avenues.
"The first charter incorporating the town was granted by the Missouri General Assembly, Feb. 20, 1865, and amended Feb. 27, 1869."
In 1870 the population of the town was twelve hundred. In 1880 it was reported by the census marshal at twelve hundred and eighty, but this was believed to be less than the true number. It is now (1883) estimated at two thousand.
The following have been officers of the town since its incorporation:
TRUSTEES. 1865, H. W. Leffingwell, Albert G. Edwards, Richard S. Elliott, William T. Essex, Lucius D. Moore, Francis Berg, Henry T. Mudd; 1866, J. W. Sutherland, Francis Berg, Albert G. Edwards; 1868, Richard Holme, John Pitman, Joshua L. Tracy, August Metzelfeldt; 1869, Thomas L. Mills, Armstead O. Grubb; 1871, Lemuel G. Pardee, Theodore Hegee, Michael Higgins; 1872, John Pitman, Joseph R. Matthews, William Armintrout; 1874, A. B. Garrison, Matthew W. Leet, Levi House; 1876, John W. Andrews, William T. Essex, Joseph R. Matthews; 1878, James B. Roberts, Henry A. Hyatt, Charles A. Lawton, George W. Tracy, Matthew W. Leet; 1880, George H. Gill, John W. Andrews, Dr. John Pitman; 1882, H. A. Hyatt, George W. Tracy, M. W. Leet.
CLERKS AND EX OFFICIO TREASURERS. 1865, Francis Berg; 1871, Thomas L. Mills; 1872, Lemuel G. Pardee; 1873, Niram H. Allen.
CLERK. 1874, Niram H. Allen.
TREASURER. 1874, Niram H. Allen.
MARSHALS. 1865, Henry S. Allen; 1866, Lemuel G. Pardee; 1869, James Martin; 1871, James W. Musick; 1873, John W. Matthews; 1876, William Armintrout; 1878, John C. Farris; 1882, John H. Hayes.
RECORDERS. 1869, Lemuel G. Pardee, Egbert W. Halsey, John W. Sutherland; 1871, Lemuel G. Pardee; 1873, Hugo S. Jacobi; 1878, Cortez A. Kitchen, William S. Stewart.
ATTORNEYS. 1873, James S. Cornwell; 1875, William S. Stewart; 1877, William S. Bodley.
The town has two general stores, five grocery and variety stores, two drug-stores, two boot and shoe stores, three restaurants, one bakery, one wagon-shop, two blacksmith-shops, one barber, one livery-stable, two wood and coal yards, one jeweler, two tin-shops, two attorneys, and two physicians.
THE ATHENAEUM in Kirkwood was erected by a joint-stock company called the Kirkwood Hall Association. The capital stock of this company was fifteen thousand dollars, in shares of one hundred dollars each. It was erected in 1874, on the corner of Webster and Adams Avenues. It is two stories in height, and the second story has a large hall, with stage and scenery, and is designed for lectures, dramatic entertainments, etc. The first floor is fitted up for entertainments of a different character, such as fairs and festivals. Prominent among the promoters of this enterprise were George H. Gill, Enos Clark, John W. Andrews, and A. W. Fleming.
KIRKWOOD LODGE, No. 484, F. AND A. M., was organized under dispensation on the 4th of November, 1873, with the following members: M. D. L. Buel, W. M; John W. Wade, S. W.; W. H. Fanning, J. W.; Theodore Heege, Treas.; Henry T. Mudd., Sec.; Wesley P. Reckart, S. D.; Oswald Sturdy, J. D.; Edward N. Moody, Tyler; and Edwin B. Sprague and Charles Rossington.
The Worshipful Masters since the organization of the lodge have been Henry T. Mudd, 1876; Hugo S. Jacobi, 1877; Peter C. Somers, 1879; Benjamin L. Hickman, 1880; James B. Wilde, 1882. The present officers are William C. Bragg, W. M.; George C. Brand, S. W.; Edward H. Lycett, J. W.; Theodore Heege, Treas.; Hugo S. Jacobi, Sec.; Jacob H. Hawkins, S. D.; John Wilson, J. D.; Rudolph Pachenstecher, Tyler. The lodge has a fund of several hundred dollars invested.
MORNING STAR LODGE (COLORED), F. AND A. M., was organized in the summer of 1879, with N. B. Morris, W. M.; Daniel Oakes, S. W.; and James Beyers, J. W. The lodge met first on the corner of Webster and Madison Avenues, then on the corner of Main Street and Clay Avenue, then at its present hall, on Madison Avenue, between Clay and Webster Avenues.
The present W. M., N. B. Morris, has served the lodge in that capacity from the first. Stephen Thurman is S. W., and Alexander Fletcher, J. W. The lodge has now eighteen members.
KIRKWOOD COUNCIL, No. 8, LEGION OF HONOR, is an order which was founded in St. Louis in 1879. It is at the same time a social and beneficiary as well as mutual life insurance association. Its jurisdiction is limited to the city and county of St. Louis, and it now (1883) numbers about three thousand two hundred members. This council was organized in October, 1879, with twenty charter members, of whom James B. Wilde was chancellor. The present chancellor is William C. Bragg. The council has been quite prosperous, and has lost by death only one member.
KIRKWOOD COUNCIL, No. 616, ROYAL ARCANUM, was organized in April, 1882, with seventeen charter members. The officers are Henry Hough, Regent; E. H. Lycett, Vice-Regent; H. A. Hyatt, Past Regent; William Dingo, Recorder; and Samuel Snead, Treasurer. The council numbers twenty-two members.
ST. PETER'S CATHOLIC CHURCH. The records at this church do not show when a mission was established at this point, but from records in existence at St. Mary's Church, St. Louis, it is learned that it was early visited by Rev. Philip Borgna, C. M., vicar-general of St. Louis.
In 1838 it was visited by Rev. Bernard Allen, S. J., and in 1839 Rev. Peter R. Donnelly became the first resident priest. From 1841 to 1854 it was visited by various priests, among whom were Fathers John Baptist Fischer, Joseph Mehlville, and John Hennessy, present Bishop of Dubuque.
In 1854, Rev. James O'Hea resided at Kirkwood. In the summer of 1855, Rev. James Meller became
resident pastor, and remained till 1863, when Rev. H. Van der Lenden succeeded him, and remained till 1874. After him came Rev. Thomas Bonacum, followed by Rev. James J. Dougherty, who was succeeded in 1878 by Rev. G. D. Power. The present pastor is Rev. B. G. Stemker.
In 1834 a rock church existed in Kirkwood (then called Gravois), and it is probable that it was built in 1832. About 1850 it was enlarged, and in 1863 a school-house was built and a parochial school established. In 1865 the site of the present church was purchased, and on the 26th of May, 1867, the corner-stone was laid by Very Rev. Joseph Melcher, vicar-general. The Most Rev. Bishop of St. Louis had promised to dedicate the church on the 19th of July, 1868, but being ill and unable to do so, it was then occupied without dedication. It was blessed by Bishop Ryan, July 4, 1875, while yet unfinished.
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH. In October, 1854, Rev. J. F. Fenton organized this church with the following constituent members: Henry Singleton, Mrs. Marsena Singleton, Mr. and Mrs. Beman, Robert Yates, Mrs. Fenton, and Dr. William Sale. The elders were H. Singleton, Robert Yates, and Mr. Beman. This was during three years the only Protestant Church in the town. The first place of worship was a small log school-house, but in 1856 the present church edifice was erected. It is a brick structure, with a seating capacity of three hundred. The exterior of this building is plainly finished, but the interior has recently been fitted up by the ladies of the congregation in very fine style. The first pastor was Rev. J. F. Fenton, who was succeeded in 1858 by Rev. Edward Sickles, and he, in 1862, by Rev. Allen Maxwell, who remained about three and a half years. The church was then without a regular pastor till July, 1867, when the present pastor, Rev. John R. Warner, was called. The society has from its organization been generally prosperous, and it has now no debt. The worshipers number about two hundred.
GRACE EPISCOPAL CHURCH. The first Episcopal services in Kirkwood were conducted by H. I. Bodley, a lay reader, in his house, in 1854. He continued to hold such services in Kirkwood till April, 1859, when a parish under the above name was regularly organized, with A. S. Mitchell, H. W. Hough, H. I. Bodley, R. S. Elliot, H. Clay Hart, James Riley, and Thomas Kelly, Jr., as vestrymen.
The corner-stone of the church was laid in August, 1859, and it was consecrated on Whitsunday, 1860. It is a stone edifice, thirty-five by seventy-eight feet, with a spire eighty-three feet in height, and its cost was twelve thousand dollars. A rectory was built in 1866, on ground purchased for the purpose, at a total cost of six thousand dollars.
Mr. Bodley continued to conduct lay services till September, 1864, when Rev. George K. Dunlap was called as rector. He continued till October, 1880, when he was elected Bishop of Arizona, and was succeeded by the present rector, Rev. F. B. Scheetz.
At the time Bishop Dunlap became rector the number of communicants was twenty. The present number is one hundred and fifty-two. The parish has no debt. Additions and alterations to the church, the cost of which will be one thousand dollars, are now (1883) in progress.
METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH SOUTH. This church was organized in 1869, with eighteen members, by Rev. W. D. Shumate, in a hall. Rev. John N. Robinson served the church three years, and was succeeded by Revs. J. S. Frazier and B. R. Thrower during the next three years. Then followed J. B. McFerrin and Rev. William M. Leftwich, each one year; Rev. J. D. Johnson, one year; then Rev. J. L. Spencer, three years; Rev. J. C. Berryman, one year; Rev. J. J. Watts, one year, and the present pastor, Rev. J. Dines, who came in 1882. By reason of the fluctuating population here the membership has varied greatly. At present (1883) it is fifty, and the society is prosperous.
The congregation first worshiped in Armintrout's Hall, on Main Street, and subsequently in a church on Clay Avenue. The present church edifice, on the corner of Clay and Adams Avenues, was built in 1877. It is a frame structure, with a seating capacity of two hundred, and its total cost was two thousand dollars. The church has no debt.
BAPTIST CHURCH. Prior to 1870 no Baptist Church organization existed in Kirkwood, though a few members of the denomination resided in the town. July 30th of that year the church was organized with the following constituent members: Dr. B. F. Edwards, Mrs. Eliza Edwards, James Dunham, Mrs. Jane Dunham, Miss Mary Dunham, Allen Jack, Mrs. Maria Jack, J. W. Finley, Mrs. Ellen Finley, P. H. Abrams, Mrs. Angelina Burns, and Mrs. M. W. Leet.
The first place of worship was a rented room in a building now owned by Dr. Pitman, on Webster Avenue, next to the railroad, afterward in an upper room of a building on the corner of Webster Avenue and Main Street. The present church edifice was completed and first occupied in May, 1874. It is a brick building, with a seating capacity of three hundred. It stands on the corner of Webster and Washington Avenues. Its cost was four thousand dollars.
The first pastor was Rev. J. R. Downer, followed, in 1873, by Rev. E. H. Sawyer, and he, in 1875, by Rev. T. C. Coffey, who was succeeded by Rev. William Elmer in 1876, and he by Rev. T. J. Davis in 1878. The present pastor, Rev. J. D. Biggs, was called in 1881. The present membership is forty-five. The church has no debt.
CONCORDIA EVANGELICAL LUTHERAN CHURCH. In the spring of 1873, Peter Bopp, a citizen of Kirkwood, erected at his own expense a church edifice on Madison Avenue, between Clay and Webster Avenues. The cost of this building was one thousand dollars. In this in May of that year the Evangelical Lutheran Society was organized. The use of the house was given to the society free of rent during three years, at the end of which time the congregation purchased it. Its size is twenty by thirty feet, and its seating capacity is one hundred. At its organization the society numbered twelve, and the number of worshipers is now about seventy-five. A parochial school, in which the German and the English languages are taught, has been maintained during a portion of the time since the church existed here. Professor Martin Guenther has been the pastor from the first.
ROSE HILL BAPTIST CHURCH (COLORED). The records of this church are lost, but from the recollections of members it is learned that the society was organized in 1870 by Rev. Emmanuel Cartwright, with Willis Mitchell, Mary Hale, Jane Rome, Kirke Gray, Maria Gray, and Alonzo Thomas as constituent members. During the same year the present house of worship was erected at a cost of six hundred and thirty dollars.
The pastors of the church have been Revs. Enoch Bolden, 1870; Willis Stafford, 1872; John Grant, 1874; Jerry McClandingham, 1876; John Johnson, 1881; W. B. Wilson, 1881; C. W. Lewis, 1882; and the present pastor, Finley Lewis, 1882. The society has no debt.
THE SECOND BAPTIST CHURCH (COLORED) was organized in 1878 with thirty-three constituent members. During two years the society worshiped in a rented house, but in 1880 a frame church building was erected at a cost of one thousand dollars, all of which has been paid.
The pastors have been Revs. George Clark, 1878; and the present pastor, Frederick McKinney.
A. M. E. CHURCH. In the absence of records it cannot be learned when this society was organized, or when its house of worship was erected. It has at different times been a charge on the same circuit with one at Carondelet, and with another at Labadie, but in 1879 it became a station. Its house of worship is a frame structure, forty-two by twenty-two. Its estimated value is one thousand dollars, and the society has no debt.
The following clergymen are known to have served this society: Revs. J. W. Early, 1864; J. C. Embury, 1865; Moses Dickson, 1868; James Madison, 1870; I. N. Triplet, 1872; W. A. Dove, 1874; W. H. Sexton, 1875; D. W. Oaks, 1879; Hubbard Casper, 1881; and the present pastor, N. S. Parks, 1882.
KIRKWOOD DISTRICT SCHOOL. Prior to the incorporation of the Kirkwood School District the schools were conducted under the public school system of the State. By an act approved Feb. 17, 1865, the town was made a special school district with a board of six directors, two to be chosen annually, and to serve during three years.
In 1866 a lot was purchased at a cost of two thousand dollars, and a temporary school building was erected at an expense of two thousand five hundred dollars, and a church building was rented for a colored school. In 1869 a brick school-house with four school-rooms was erected on Jefferson Avenue, between Clay and Harrison Avenues, at a cost of eight thousand five hundred dollars, and school was first opened in this in December of that year. In 1870 a lot was purchased and a building fitted up on it for a colored school. In 1876 two rooms were added to the brick school-house at a cost of sixteen hundred dollars, and in 1880 an addition was made to the colored school building at a cost of seven hundred dollars. The school property has now an estimated value of twelve thousand dollars.
In these houses good schools are maintained, under five teachers in the white and two in the colored department. The average attendance is three hundred, though the number of children of school age is much greater than this.
The people of Kirkwood look with a laudable pride on the schools which they maintain, where the children of the wealthy and the indigent alike may receive such an education as to prepare them to fill with honor any ordinary position in life.
KIRKWOOD SEMINARY. Sept. 5, 1861, this institution was founded on as modest a scale as ever a school started. It opened with seven scholars, supplied with different text-books, in a little room filled with heterogeneous furniture. Kirkwood was then a small village, twelve miles from St. Louis, founded only a few years previously, and with no school of any description. Its churches were struggling into existence. The civil war had divided its population
into bands, and brought an element of discord into what had been a happy and neighborly suburb. No one who has not passed through such scenes can realize the bitterness of feeling that separated old, attached neighbors. Kirkwood being outside of the forts and guns of St. Louis, there was a possibility of danger; and the occasional visits of United States soldiers, hunting for spies and rebel mails, the drilling of the Union militia, and the presence of bushwhackers, real and supposed, all constituted an atmosphere in which it was hard for a school flying the Union flag to receive the support of the entire community. Good hard work had to be done at the foundation, and the discipline and thoroughness of the school had to be such as to command the regard of the community in spite of bitter sectional prejudices. In the first year the school quadrupled its numbers, and for three years rented rooms as it could get accommodations for its increasing numbers, when the citizens of Kirkwood, thinking that the school should be put on a permanent basis, subscribed in 1864 for a small building. Among the early and stanch friends of the school were John A. Allen, of the firm of Claflin & Allen, T. J. Albright, Hudson E. Bridge, John Hoffman, and Gen. A. G. Edwards, of the United States treasury, St. Louis. Hudson E. Bridge, of the firm of Bridge, Beach & Co., selected the site and purchased the ground, giving to the principal a bond that she might purchase it at any time at the price which he had paid. When the land had appreciated four hundred per cent. in value it afforded his generous nature great pleasure to sell it to the principal at exactly the original price, less one hundred dollars donated to the school.
The following year, the school having increased so that the principal, Miss Anna E. Sneed, could not do justice to all, it was deemed advisable to add another room to the building, and Miss Mary C. Sneed took charge of the musical and primary departments. The house was then a little brown structure in the woods with two rooms. The squirrels, rabbits, and birds in the woods, the wild-flowers all around, and the total absence of fences were very pleasant features in those days.
Dr. Henry T. Mudd, of St. Louis, cut through the scrub-oaks a path which extended over the lots where are now the Catholic Church, public school, and many private residences.
In 1866, Miss Hattie E. Sneed was added to the corps of sisters that made the faculty of the school, and as, in the opinion of Mr. Bridge, it was unadvisable to add another room, as "it would make Kirkwood Seminary look too much like a ropewalk," it was judged best to discard the small building altogether, and erect one large enough to accommodate the school for some years. A year was spent in planning, and the summer of 1868 saw a two-story building, with a large audience hall, recitation- and music-rooms, occupying its place.
The school was incorporated under a liberal charter that empowered it to confer degrees and diplomas, and conveyed to it all powers and rights necessary.
The original corporators were Hon. E. W. Fox, president; Rev. S. E. Sneed, vice-president; Rev. John R. Warner, secretary; Hudson E. Bridge, Dr. B. F. Edwards, Gen. A. G. Edwards, T. J. Albright, W. S. Woods, John Hoffman, and Anna C. Sneed.
Some years later the faculty was strengthened and new departments were added to the curriculum of study, till it was as full as that of any college in the West for young ladies.
A building for a boarding department began to be very greatly needed. Just then the square of four acres north of the seminary hall, containing a large stone dwelling, beautiful grounds, and the outbuildings, stables, servants' house, etc., came into the market. It was the property of the late William McPherson, and it had long been desired for the seminary. It was purchased in the summer of 1873, and fitted up as a home for young ladies.
Rev. Samuel R. Sneed, who had been for fifty-four years an influential and devoted minister of the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky and Indiana, now gave up his home and came to spend the evening of his life under his daughters' roof, laying down all burdens of care and responsibility, but still blessing his family and the school with his influence and prayers. Here in the summer of 1876 he breathed his last, j full of years and honor, and mourned by all, from the highest to the lowest in the community, as a man of faith and prayer and good works.
In 1878 a cousin of the principal's father, Maj. James Hite, of Terre Haute, an old soldier of the war of 1812, and an elder in the Presbyterian Church, made a liberal donation, and lifted the greater part of the incumbrance resting upon the property. The seminary had now good property, suited to educational purposes, ample grounds, furniture, musical instruments, library, the beginning of an art gallery, and the experience and reputation derived from eighteen years devoted exclusively and uninterruptedly to teaching by its principal. It had suffered the loss of several of the original corporators, Hudson E. Bridge and Dr. B. F. Edwards by death, and others by removal. Hon. E. W. Fox, who for many years had been president of the corporation, had resigned.
It was deemed advisable that, while the school was unsectarian in its character, it should be distinctly guided by Christian counsel from the different denominations interested in its prosperity, and a new board was constituted, largely consisting of leading ministers and citizens in St. Louis. This board favored the institution with its wise counsel for the term of election, four years; and consenting to serve again, their numbers were increased, and the following constitute the present advisory board of the corporation:
Rev. H. D. Ganse, D. D., president, pastor First Presbyterian Church, St. Louis; Rev. S. J. Niccolls, D. D., vice-president, pastor Second Presbyterian Church, St. Louis; Right Rev. Bishop G. K. Dunlop, vice-president, Santa Fe, N. M.; Rev. C. L. Goodell, D. D., secretary, pastor Pilgrim Congregational Church, St. Louis; Rev. M. Rhodes, D. D., pastor St. Mark's English Lutheran Church, St. Louis; Rev. W. V. Tudor, D. D., pastor St. John's Methodist Episcopal Church South, St. Louis; Rev. W. W. Boyd, D. D., pastor Second Baptist Church, St. Louis; Rev. C. E. Felton, D. D., pastor Union Methodist Church, St. Louis; Hon. John B. Henderson, St. Louis; Col. George E. Leighton, St. Louis; Carlos S. Greeley, St. Louis; Capt. Thomas W. Fitch, St. Louis; John Hoffman, Kirkwood; O. A. Grubb, Kirkwood; C. H. Olcott, Rock Hill; Dr. H. F. Steinhauer, Sappington; Anna C. Sneed (ex officio), Kirkwood.
The long financial depression over the country was passing away, and in 1880 it was found necessary to build a small addition to the stone dwelling to accommodate the ever-increasing number of boarders. This was not sufficient, and it was deemed advisable to erect a large building, with suitable parlors, dining-room, and accommodations for a family of fifty.
The annual report of the principal, April 25, 1881, said,
"Last year we were compelled to build sufficiently to accommodate fifty per cent. more boarding pupils than before, and hardly had we finished before the dear ones, who came up to us from different States and Territories in our broad West, were crying in our ears, ‘The place is too strait for me; give place to me that I may dwell.’
"We therefore considered our needs deliberately during the past winter, have planned leisurely, with the aid of a skillful architect, J. G. Cairns, Esq., St. Louis, submitting his drawings and estimates to different members of our board from time to time, and so great has been the prosperity of the school and the whole country that we have determined, with your approval, to provide accommodations for twice the present number of pupils. The drawings, perspective, etc., have been laid before you at the former meeting, and our contracts only await your approval, and then we ‘will arise and build.’"
Ground was broken for the new building April 26, 1881, and when the 3d of September came the stately new structure was not only complete, but the carpets, curtains, furniture, and even the immense furnaces were in place. This was the summer of 1881, remarkable for its intense heat and sunstrokes, and the short time in which the building was erected is truly complimentary to the energy of the architect, the contractors, and the principal.
Since then the building has been filled to its utmost capacity with enthusiastic teachers and devoted and faithful pupils.
This institution, in its training, aims to give efficiency and earnestness to character, deepen conscientiousness, and make faithful, devoted, unselfish, and energetic women of those committed to its care, ranking these things as of higher value than its excellent and thorough training in the arts and sciences and all the branches of a liberal education; and as a bright testimony to its success it may point to its honored graduates, educated women and true ladies, serving their generation as wives, mothers, and teachers in many States. The faculty of the seminary have given especial attention to instruction in fine art, as a glance at the specimens hanging in the parlor, and at the carved mantel-piece which reaches to the ceiling, all the designs and work of the principal, will show.
This brief sketch is appropriately closed with the following report of the board, made in 1882, the twenty-first year of the institution:
"During the summer of the last year Kirkwood Seminary was thoroughly rebuilt, greatly enlarged, and made convenient and attractive in every way. Its homelike interior has especially attracted our attention. The year following has been marked by greater numbers, more enthusiastic work, and increased efficiency in all departments of the school. It is delightfully situated near the city of St. Louis, combining the privileges of the city with country scenes of unusual loveliness and culture.
"Its course of study is well arranged, its teachers are excellent and earnest in their work, and the results of the year's work are highly satisfactory.
"We recommend this institution to parents, not only for the value of its training, but also for its marked Christian character, and we believe that those who intrust their daughters to its careful nurture will be well pleased.
"C. L. GOODELL, Secretary."
The faculty is as follows:
Miss Anna C. Sneed, Principal; Miss Mary C. Sneed, Vocal and Instrumental Music; Miss Jeannette McLagan, Advanced Department and Penmanship; Miss Lily M. Bruner, English Branches and Music; Mrs. Helen E. Barr, Primary Department; Miss Ottilie Holtcamp, Primary Assistant; Miss Alice Lathrop, Vocal and Instrumental Music; Miss Mary M. Barr, Music and Kindergarten; Miss Nettie Scheetz, Instrumental Music; Miss Bessie Barr, Kindergarten Assistant; Rev. F. B. Scheetz, Examiner in Latin; Madame L. Tinling, French; Madame M Steiffel, German; Miss Anna C. Sneed, Art Department; Professor H. M. Butler, Violin; Mrs. S. K. Sneed, Boarding Department.
Central township, so named because of its position in St. Louis County prior to its division, has St. Ferdinand township for its northern boundary, the city of St. Louis on the east, the township of Carondelet
and a part of Bonhomme on the south, and Bonhomme on the west. It has a length of about nine miles between north and south, and an average width of eight miles. It has, like the other townships in the county, a rolling surface, and like them a fertile soil.
A branch of the Des Peres River drains the southern part of the township, and the northern and eastern part is drained by another branch of the same stream. Fee-Fee (said to be a French corruption of the name "Fife") Creek takes its rise in the northwestern part, and discharges its waters into the Missouri River.
Several rock roads traverse the township and converge towards St. Louis, affording more facilities for travel and transportation to and from that city than are enjoyed by any other township in the county. Natural Bridge and St. Charles roads cross the northeastern corner of the township, the Central or Olive Street road and the Clayton road pass through the central part, and the Manchester road traverses the southern portion of the township. Prior to the era of railroads these rock roads were not only avenues of communication between this township and the city of St. Louis, but were thoroughfares over which passed constant streams of emigration towards the great West. This was especially true of the St. Charles road, which was the greatest western thoroughfare.
The township is also traversed by four different railroads. The Missouri Pacific crosses the southeastern corner, the St. Louis, Kansas City and Northern and the West End Narrow-Gauge Roads run through the northeastern corner, and the Laclede and Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake Railroad passes across the southwestern corner.
With the establishment of the great Western railroad system through travel on the rock roads ceased, but to the easy communication with the city which they afford the prosperity of the township is largely due.
Although in close proximity to St. Louis, Central township was not settled and brought under cultivation earlier than other portions of the county. Of the first settlers here, as in some other portions of the county, many were emigrants from Kentucky and Virginia. Of those who came prior to 1820 the names are remembered by the oldest inhabitants of the Waltons, sons of John Walton, Moores, Sullens, Links, Musicks, Robert Wash, Douglasses, Cabannés, Watsons, Murphys, Gratiots, Freemores, Larimores, Polaskes, Charlevilles, Bumparts, Tessons, Mattocks, Kings, McKutchens, Calverts, Carsons, Tyheans, Warfields, Berrys, Curries, Brothertons, Browns, Germans, McDonalds, Longs, Lockharts, Smiths, Padgetts, Clarks, Buchanans, and Timons (of the family of Bishop Timon).
Of those who came about 1820 or soon afterwards were the Fitzgeralds, Moseleys, Hunnemans, Claytons, Dennys, Wyatts, McCoys, McCoslands, Suttons, Taylors, Lewises, Marshalls, Phillipses, Harrisons, Humes, Breckenridges, Shumates, Lacklands, Vaughns, Underwoods, Hangemeads, Hartshornes, Beards, McKnights, Hucksteps, Howsers, Wares, Blackwells, Descomes, Prices, Darbys, Finks, Smalls, Bennets, Bruzes, Guins, Gibsons, Browns, Picketts, Hendersons, Edmundses, Boyntons, McGees, Davises, Barrows, Adamses, Williamses, Robinsons, Barrs, Everitts, Hanleys, Nays, McKelders, and Truesdells. The population of Central township was in 1850, 1133; 1860, 5848; 1870, 8923; 1880, 7845.
The pioneer grist-mill in the township was established in the southwestern part, by David Huckstep, in 1825. It was what was known as a horse-mill, propelled by a wheel that was turned by four horses, and it had one run of rock stones.
In 1830, George Gordon built a steam grist-mill in the northwestern part of the township. It had a run of rock and another of burr stones. It was burned after about twelve years.
Olive Street Mill, three miles east from Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur Lake, was built in 1873 by a stock company, of which E. H. Stratman was the president. It afterwards became the property of Henry Stratman, and in 1880, J. A. and J. F. Hibbert, under the firm-name of Hibbert Brothers, became owners. In 1881, J. F. Hibbert, the present owner, became sole proprietor.
The mill is a substantial brick building with two run of stones, and it has a daily capacity of fifty barrels of flour. The machinery is driven by an engine of forty-five horse-power. It is a merchant mill. The proprietor is about to introduce rollers and increase the capacity of the mill to one hundred barrels daily.
The first tannery was established in the northwestern part of the township, by a Mr. Moore, about 1815. It had ten vats, and was, operated till 1832, when it was abandoned. In 1821, Ralph Clayton erected a tannery near the present town of Clayton. It had eighteen vats, and it was worked by Mr. Clayton till 1856, when it ceased to be operated because of the failure of water. A shoe-shop was also carried on by Mr. Clayton during many years, or till ready-made shoes and boots deprived country shoemakers to a large extent of their occupation.
It is believed that the first blacksmith in the township
was George Carson, whose shop was half a mile west of the present court-house. Other early black-smiths were James Sutton, on the Manchester road, Mr. McCormick, and Martin F. Hanley.
The pioneer shoe-shop was that of Mr. Clayton. It was during several years the only shoe-shop in the township. Fewer mechanics' shops came into existence in Central township at an early day than would have been established because of its proximity to the city of St. Louis, where shops and mills were set up at a very early period, even before this township was settled to any extent.
Clayton. Previous to the location of the county-seat no town existed where Clayton now is. When the location of the county buildings was under consideration, Ralph Clayton proposed to donate for the purpose one hundred acres of land. His offer was accepted, as well as that of Mrs. Hanley, who donated four acres, and the county buildings were located there, in accordance with the will of the people, expressed at an election held Dec. 4, 1877. Since that time the town has come to include twenty dwellings, three hotels, one grocery, three printing-offices, three attorneys, one singing hall, and the county buildings. A rapid growth in the future is inevitable.
Ralph Clayton, whose name the town bears, was born Feb. 22, 1788, in Augusta County, Va., of English parents. He resided at his native place till 1820, when he removed to what is now Central township, and located seven hundred acres of land. He at once established a tannery, and at the same time commenced the cultivation of his farm. He continued the business of tanning till 1856, and he still resides on the farm that he first located. He was prominently identified with all that has tended to the progress of improvement in this region. He is now, at the age of ninety-five, in good health, and is quite active. He was married in 1831 to Rosanna McCausland, who died in 1862, leaving three children, who are all now living.
Mount Olive Saengerbund. This society was incorporated Sept. 4, 1882. Its purpose, as set forth in its constitution, is "the culture of vocal music and social improvement." The society now consists of thirty active and sixty passive members. The meetings have been held in the Mount Olive House, but a new hall at Clayton is nearly completed. It is sixty by one hundred and twenty feet, and is divided into principal hall, dining-room, dressing-rooms, library, etc., and its cost is four thousand dollars.
Methodist Episcopal Church South of Clayton. Prior to 1881 the Methodists in the vicinity of Clayton worshiped at Mount Olive. In that year the Mount Olive Society was transferred to Clayton, which had become the county-seat.
The society was organized at Mount Olive in 1860, and in that year a house of worship was erected on land donated by Martin F. Hanley and Cyrene C. Hanley, his wife. This house was for the use of all Protestant societies and for school purposes. The trustees for its erection were William B. Woodson, Jesse B. Underwood, and John Suter. In this house the society worshiped till the removal to Clayton. It is a brick structure, with a basement for school purposes, and the seating capacity of the auditorium is two hundred and fifty.
The basement is used for a school, and the upper room is, according to the terms of the deed, for the use of any Protestant denomination desiring to hold services in it.
Of the clergymen who have officiated at that place, the names are remembered of Revs. D. D. Shumate, Scruggs, J. S. Frazier, Treadwell, John A. Robinson, and A. T. Tidwell.
During two years after its removal the society worshiped in a school-house at Clayton, but in 1882 a house of worship was erected, and dedicated on the 7th of January, 1883. It is a frame structure, twenty-eight by forty-two feet in size; its cost was two thousand dollars, and it is unencumbered with debt. The membership is twenty-seven.
The clergymen who have served this society since its removal are Revs. B. R. Thrower, J. R. Hicks, J. W. Cunningham, and William Tyler.
Clayton Democrat. In the latter part of January, 1877, the Weekly Mail was established at Kirkwood by a company, with William L. Thomas as publisher. After a time the establishment was purchased by Johnson, then in succession by Thaddeus M. Gardiner, Lewis & Stevens, and Thomas P. Diggs, and June 10, 1881, the present editor and publisher purchased the office. While Mr. Thomas was publisher the office was removed to Mount Olive, and by Mr. Gardiner it was taken to Clayton, where the journal has since been published. It is a weekly, and, as its name indicates, it supports the principles of the Democratic party.
The Star-Republican. The Western Star was first published in the fall of 1877 by B. B. Crossman at West St. Louis. In August, 1878, Mr. Grossman commenced the publication of the St. Louis County Republican at Kirkwood, and in 1879 the two were consolidated under the name of the Star-Republican and published at Clayton, to which place the office was removed in December, 1880, and it has since been published at that place. The journal is the firm and
fearless advocate of the principles of the Republican party and of temperance.
The St. Louis County Waechter. In 1876, William Raine established this journal in St. Louis, and continued its publication during two years. It was then purchased by C. W. Eck, who removed the office to Clayton in 1880, and has since continued its publication there. It has from the first been published in the German language, and it is the organ of the German Republicans in St. Louis County. The Waechter is the only German paper in the county.
The St. Louis County Watchman. In the spring of 1881, P. W. Rauchenstein became joint proprietor of the office of the Waechter, and in the autumn of the same year the firm commenced the publication of the St. Louis County Watchman, a Republican journal in the English language. Both journals have since been published by the firm of Eck & Rauchenstein from the same office in Clayton.
The first power-press in St. Louis County was brought here by this firm in the fall of 1881, and the first number of the Watchman was printed on it.
Webster Groves. In 1861, where is now the town of Webster Groves, stood only the railroad depot and a small store kept by Augustus Moody. A few residences also were scattered in the vicinity. All the land north from Lockwood Avenue, except here and there a lot, was owned by John C. Marshall. South from that avenue J. P. Helfenstein, Edward M. Avery, William Gore, William M. Prant, J. Richardson, and Edward Lancaster were the owners of the ground.
Mr. Marshal had, a few years previously, laid out a portion of his land in town lots. In 1861, Charles Connon purchased four of these lots near the depot, and in 1862 erected a greenhouse, to which he has since added eight others. South from Lockwood Avenue the owners of the land have since laid out town lots, most of which were promptly sold.
In 1863 64 an impulse was given to settlement here, and the town commenced a more rapid growth. Real estate advanced greatly in price, and men of business in St. Louis established homes for their families here. The town received its name of Webster from Webster College, which had been located near it, and which was named in honor of the great statesman, Daniel Webster. When a post-office was established here it was found there was another town of Webster in the State, and the word "Groves" was added.
Since 1864 the town has had a steady growth, till now there are within the limits of the school district which includes it (one square mile) fifteen hundred inhabitants. The place has three physicians, three groceries, one drug-store, one shoe-shop, one tailor's shop, three meat markets, and one blacksmith-shop. Of course the nearness of the town to St. Louis and the excellent facilities for communication prevent the large development of business establishments here.
EMMANUEL CHURCH (EPISCOPAL). This parish was organized in 1866, and in that year Richard Lockwood erected, at the intersection of Lockwood Avenue and Big Bend road, a church edifice, which he presented to the parish. It is a neat stone building, with a seating capacity of two hundred, and the parish has no debt. A rectory was subsequently built near the church.
The rectors of the parish have been Revs. P. N. Meade, Dr. Easter, A. Battle, Charles Ganthier, and the present rector, Rev. Mr. Griffith.
BAPTIST CHURCH (COLORED). This was organized in 1867, with thirty members. The society has a house of worship capable of seating about one hundred. The present membership is forty. The church has not enjoyed the ministrations of a pastor during many years, till, in the latter part of 1882, Rev. Samuel Lot was called.
CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH. Jan. 31, 1866, this society was organized with ten constituent members. The first place of worship was a building known as the chapel, that had been erected for school purposes by William M. Prant, R. P. Strudley, and J. P. Helfenstein. The growth of the congregation necessitated a larger place of worship, and in December, 1869, they removed to the public school-house, where they worshiped during two years. In 1871 the present church edifice, on Lockwood Avenue, between Elm and Gore Avenues, was built. It is a stone structure, with two hundred and fifty sittings, and its cost was sixteen thousand dollars. The society has no debt. The pastors have been Revs. Henry M. Grant, James Cruikshanks, Robert Kerr, Leroy Hand, and E. B. Burrows. The membership is ninety.
PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH. In March, 1866, this society was organized by Henry A. Nelson, D. D., with twenty-five members. Until the erection of their church edifice the society worshiped with Rock Hill Presbyterian Church, but in 1867 their house of worship was completed, and dedicated February 10th of that year. It is a frame structure, with three hundred sittings, and it stands on the corner of Lockwood and Gore Avenues. It is not encumbered with debt. Their pastors have been Revs. Raphael Kessler, J. Marks, D. D., and the present pastor, P. H. K. McComb. The church has been uniformly prosperous, and the present membership is one hundred and twenty.
WEBSTER GROVES PUBLIC SCHOOL. Before 1868 no public school was nearer to Webster than Rock Hill, one mile distant. In that year a district of one mile square, including the town, was constituted, and a school building was erected. It is a frame structure, forty by sixty feet in size, and its cost was ten thousand dollars. With a wise provision for the future growth of the town, this house was made of a capacity double the requirements of the population at that time; four school-rooms were finished, only two of which were at first used. The full capacity of the house is now required, and the question of adding to the existing facilities is under consideration. Four teachers are employed, and the aggregate annual attendance is three hundred. A colored school, with one teacher, is kept in another part of the town.
SOCIETIES. Webster Groves Lodge, No. 1729, K. of H., was organized in August, 1879, with forty-three members, and Charles Connon, P. D., Dr. B. G. Bristol, D., N. D. Thompson, V. D., Charles Knight, R., and Charles Babbington, F. R. The presiding officers have been B. G. Bristol, H. Leven. The present officers are Adrian De Young, D.; William Jackson, V. D.; H. L. Peterson, R.; and Charles Babbington, F. R. The present membership is fifty-five. One member of the lodge has died.
Grove Council, Legion of Honor, was organized on the 15th of December, 1879, with fifteen charter members. The officers were George B. Waters, C.; William Moore, V. C.; Robert H. Thompson, R.; J. M. Steere, T. The Chancellors since have been M. B. Williams, F. D. Booth, and the present incumbent of the office, A. De Toung. The other officers are D. S. Willard, V. C.; James MacCausland, R.; and J. M. Steere, T. The present membership is thirty-two.
Des Peres Presbyterian Church. This is located on the Geyer Maddox road, three miles north from Kirkwood. The present house of worship was erected about 1832. It is a stone edifice, with about one hundred sittings. Of the original constituent members of this church only Mrs. Rebecca McCutchen, now ninety-two years of age, survives. Rev. J. N. Gilbreath was the pastor of this church during about twenty-five years. Besides him the names are remembered of the following pastors: Revs. John Lyons, Joseph Fenton, H. A. Booth, William Lapsley, William Claggett, A. Shotwell, William H. Parks, H. Moreton, and the present pastor, J. Addison Smith. A parsonage has recently been erected near to the church. The society has a membership of fifty, and no debt.
German Evangelical Zion's Church. As early as 1838 a society existed and worshiped in a log church between the Clayton road and Des Peres. In this building the society continued to worship till 1871, when the present church was erected, near the intersection of the Ballas and Clayton roads. It is a fine brick structure, forty by sixty feet in size, and its cost was eight thousand dollars. There is no debt on the church property. A school-house and teacher's or pastor's residence are near the church, and a parochial school is maintained during a portion of each year.
The pastors of the church have been Revs. E. L. Nollau, 1838; E. Arenlarius, 1841; I. Knaus, 1845; John Wettle, 1846; W. Schueueman, 1850; I. F. Roewing, 1854; C. F. Doehring, 1860; N. Joseph, 1864; I. G. Neuschnud, 1870; F. Delveau, 1874; Philip Karbach, 1880; and the present pastor, Christian Irion, 1880.
German Evangelical Lutheran Reformed United Church of Central. This society was organized in 1844, at a place then called the Bonhomme road, now Olive Street, eleven miles from St. Louis, with about twenty members. A log building was erected, and in this services have since been held. It has a gallery, and its seating capacity is two- hundred. In 1869 the church was renovated and changed by increasing the height, adding the gallery, ceiling the inside, and weather-boarding and painting the outside. A belfry and steeple were also added, and the building has now the appearance of a frame house. These repairs were made at an expense of five hundred dollars. The house is also furnished with an organ, the cost of which was two hundred dollars.
Several years before the church was repaired a parsonage was built. It is also a log building, covered with weather-boards. The church has no debt.
The following are the names of the pastors who have served this church: Revs. William Schueneman, Henry Knetterer, Michael Kruse, and the present pastor, S. Payn.
A parochial school has from the first been maintained in this church, and instruction is given in both the German and English languages.
Evangelical Lutheran Emanuel's Church of Central. In 1844 this society was organized on the old Bonhomme road, eleven miles from St. Louis. In that year a small log house of worship was erected, and the congregation has worshiped in this till the present time. It has a gallery, and its seating capacity is one hundred. Some years since the outside was weather-boarded, but a new church is needed, and the congregation is about to erect one a short distance from this, on the Olive Street road, at
a cost of five thousand dollars. The society purchased an organ in 1872 at a cost of five hundred dollars. The church has no debt. The membership is fifty.
A log parsonage was many years since built. A parochial school has been maintained by this congregation since its organization. For this school a neat brick house was erected in 1881, having accommodations for fifty scholars. The average attendance at this school, at which both German and English are taught, is forty. The following names are remembered of pastors who have served this church: Revs. I. F. Buenger, J. A. Mueller, Harms, C. W. Frederking, H. F. Meyer, W. Hallerberg, T. Landgraf, A. Cordes, and the present pastor, R. Winkler.
Rock Hill Presbyterian Church. This is on the Manchester road, ten miles from St. Louis and one mile north from Webster Groves. A society was organized here in 1844, with nine constituent members. The congregation first worshiped in the house of James C. Marshall, then in a storehouse on his land. In 1845 the present church building was erected on land donated by Mr. Marshall, and the erection of the building was superintended by him. It is a stone structure with a seating capacity of two hundred, and it is unincumbered by debt. In 1867 a parsonage was built contiguous to the church at a cost of three thousand dollars, and on this there is no debt. The land on which it stands was donated by Mrs. Elizabeth Marshall, widow of James C., who died in 1864. The names of the pastors who have served this church are Revs. William Holmes, William Grosvenor, Albert De Shiel, James Darrah, David Dimond, S. H. Hyde, Benjamin Mills, Henry B. Holmes, William Wilson, and the present pastor, John Leighton. The membership is forty.
St. Martin's Church (Catholic) of Central. This parish was organized at a very early date, and it was the mother-church from which many others have gone out. R. D. Watson donated the ground on which the church and parsonage were built. These are brick buildings, and the church has a seating capacity of one hundred and fifty. The names are remembered of the following pastors who have had charge of this congregation: Rev. Fathers Donnelly, James Murphy, James Higgins, Dennis Kennedy, Patrick Brady, Thomas Cleary, Lawrence Smith, and the present pastor, J. B. Jackson, who entered on his duties in 1865.
Evangelical Lutheran St. Paul's Church, U. A. C. (Unaltered Augsburg Confession), at Des Peres. This church was organized in 1848, with twenty-five members. The congregation first worshiped in a log church that is now used for the parochial school. The present church, which is of brick, with a seating capacity of four hundred, and has a steeple, bell, and organ, was erected at a cost of nine thousand dollars, on the corner of the Manchester and Ballas roads, in 1866. The congregation has also a parsonage and a residence for the teacher of the parochial school, which has been maintained since 1848, and in which instruction is given in German and English. The attendance at this school averages seventy. The Lutheran congregations at Ellisville and Kirkwood went out from this church.
The first pastor of this society was Rev. I. A. F. W. Mueller, succeeded in 1856 by Rev. A. Lehman, who died in 1875, and was followed by the present pastor, Rev. Theodore Messier. The membership of the church is sixty-six. The society has a cemetery near the present church. It includes two acres of ground, and its cost was three hundred dollars.
Eden Methodist Episcopal Church South. This society was organized in 1852. The first place of worship was the Ritner school-house, but soon after the organization the present house was built on the St. Charles Rock road where it is crossed by the Wabash, St. Louis and Pacific Railroad. It is a frame building, with a seating capacity of four hundred, and it is unincumbered with debt. The following names of preachers who have officiated here are remembered: Revs. W. D. Shumate, J. W. Lewis, J. E. Godbey, J. S. Frazier, I. R. Hicks, J. W. Cunningham, J. W. Robinson, B. R. Thrower, Wesley Browning, and F. A. Morris.
St. Ann's Church (Catholic) at Normandy. In 1855, Mrs. Ann Hunt donated to the Jesuits ten arpens (eight and a half acres) of land at Normandy on which to build this church. In that year a church building, which is at present used as a library, was erected. Two years later, or in 1857, the growth of the congregation necessitated the erection of a larger house of worship, and the present stone structure was built. In 1872 it was enlarged and renovated, in 1875 a steeple was added, and from year to year since statuary, paintings, and fixtures have been added, till now it is one of the most beautiful and tasteful churches in the United States. Its seating capacity is three hundred and fifty, and its value is twenty-seven thousand dollars. In 1868 a brick parsonage was erected at a cost of five thousand dollars. A parochial school was established in 1857, and a school building was then erected. This was enlarged in 1874, and again enlarged in 1882, and its present capacity is one hundred pupils. Three teachers are employed, and the average attendance is sixty.
The pastors have been Revs. P. J. De Smet, who
established the parish, Van Hulst, Condon, previously pastor of St. Xavier, and the present pastor, F. X. Kuppens, S. J. All these were Jesuits.
Mount Zion Methodist Episcopal Church South. Although many Methodists resided in the vicinity of Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur, no society existed there prior to 1870. In that year a society was organized, with about seventy-five members, and the present house of worship was built on the corner of the Olive Street and Ballas roads. It is a brick structure, with two hundred sittings, and its cost was two thousand dollars.
The pastors who have served this society have been Revs. Walter D. Shumate, who was mainly instrumental in organizing the society and building the church, F. S. Frazier, Treadwell, John W. Robinson, A. T. Tidwell, and the present pastor, William Tyler.
Evangelical Theological College. This institution was established thirty years since, in Warren County, Mo. In 1882 measures were taken to remove it to St. Louis County. A lot of eighteen acres was purchased at the intersection of St. Charles road and Hunt Avenue, and there college buildings are in process of erection. The estimated cost of these buildings is eighty-five thousand dollars.
Protestant Orphan Asylum. In 1850 the late Rev. Dr. A. Bullard, who was strongly impressed with the importance of establishing an institution of learning under the patronage and control of the Presbyterian denomination, put forth active efforts for the establishment of such an institution here. The result was the erection and partial endowment of the Webster College, so named in honor of the great statesman Daniel Webster. A farm of one hundred and fifty acres was donated for this purpose by the late John C. Marshall, and ten thousand dollars were given by Carlos S. Greeley toward the erection of a college building. Other enterprising individuals also donated large sums for the purpose, and the stone building which was intended as the residence of the president of the college was erected. In this a school which was expected to develop into a prosperous college was established. The professors in this school were Rev. David Dimond and Rev. James A. Darrah. The school continued during four years, when the death of Dr. Bullard, who was killed by the railroad accident at Gasconade River, deprived it of its most influential supporter, and it soon ceased to be used as a college, though hopes were entertained of its subsequent revival. These hopes were blasted by the breaking out of the civil war.
In 1857 a boys' boarding-school was established in the building by Professor Edward M. Avery, and successfully conducted during five years, or till the war commenced, when it was abandoned, and the building was closed. The farm then reverted to Mr. Marshall, and the house, with ten acres of land, became the property of Mr. Greeley. The Sanitary Commission subsequently came in possession of it, and added to it a large brick building. The establishment then became a Soldiers' Orphans' Home, under the patronage and control of the Sanitary Commission, aided by the State. It was conducted for this purpose till 1869, when it was donated to the St. Louis Protestant Orphan Asylum, on condition that twenty-four thousand dollars should be raised for its endowment, which was promptly done. Possession of the buildings was taken in December of that year, and the children of the asylum were removed hither.
This, which was the first orphan asylum in St. Louis, was established in 1834, and had maintained a prosperous existence till its removal. It brought hither all its inmates, and here its benevolent work has since been carried on.
The affairs of the asylum are administered by a board of sixteen lady managers, and its income is derived from the interest of its endowment, which is invested, and the voluntary contributions of its benevolent friends. Twenty acres have been added to the grounds, and the whole is cultivated for the benefit of the institution. The average number of orphans cared for here is one hundred.
Mrs. George K. Budd has been the efficient president of the board of managers since the removal of the asylum to Webster Groves. The other officers are Mrs. Edward M. Avery, vice-president; Mrs. Anna L. Blood, treasurer; and Mrs. Rebecca H. Morton, secretary. The matron is Mrs. George R. Pegram.
German Protestant Orphan Asylum. In 1858 Rev. L. E. Nollau found on a boat a child whose parents had died on their passage to this country from Germany. This child he placed under the care of Mrs. Wilhelmina Meyer, in rooms which he set apart for the purpose in the Good Samaritan Hospital, which he had just then established on Carr Street, between Sixteenth and Seventeenth. This was the commencement of the German Protestant Orphan Asylum.
The number of children in the establishment thus founded rapidly increased, and larger accommodations became necessary. Rooms were accordingly rented on the corner of Jefferson and Dayton Avenues, and to these the children were removed, though they continued to board at the Good Samaritan Hospital. On the breaking out of the civil war in 1861 the government
took possession of this building for a soldiers' hospital, and the children were removed to a house on the corner of Carr and Sixteenth Streets, where they remained till near the close of the war, when they were taken back.
In the autumn of 1866 a farm of sixty-five acres on the St. Charles road, nine miles from St. Louis, was purchased at a cost of twenty-three thousand five hundred dollars, and to the large dwelling on this farm the orphans, then fifty-five in number, were removed. In 1870 a wing was added on the east of this building, and in 1874 another wing was added on the west, and a tower was erected in front. The cost of these additions was fifty thousand dollars.
Jan. 18, 1877, the entire establishment was burned, and one child perished in the flames. The children were removed to the Good Samaritan Hospital again till spring, when they were quartered in temporary shanties on the farm. During the summer the present asylum was erected, and was first occupied November 18th of that year. It is a brick structure, one hundred and sixty by seventy feet in size, and three stories in height above the basement. It is fitted up with all the modern conveniences for an institution of this kind, and it is believed to be one of the best-arranged asylums in the country. Its cost was fifty thousand dollars. There have also been erected a teachers' residence, bakery, laundry, ice-house, and stable, all of brick, and their total cost was twenty thousand dollars. In December, 1882, twenty acres were added to the farm, and the cost of this addition was two thousand dollars. The grounds have been improved and beautified, and the place is now more attractive than any other of the kind in the vicinity.
On March 23, 1861, the institution was incorporated by an act of the Legislature, with Lewis E. Nollau, Frederick Maschmeier, T. Frederick Massman, Michael Voepel, and Francis Hackemeier as corporators. This board has been increased to the maximum number allowed by the charter.
The presidents of the board have been Frederick Bolte, Michael Voepel, Christian Knickmeier, and Mr. Voepel again. The management of the asylum devolved wholly on its founder, Rev. Mr. Nollau, till his death in 1869, until which time Mrs. Meyer continued to discharge the duties of matron. On the death of Mr. Nollau, the present superintendent, Franz Hackemeier, entered on his duties, and Mrs. Hackemeier became matron.
In the Asylum no sectarian distinction is made, but the children of Jew and Gentile, Catholic and Protestant, alike are received and cared for. The asylum is not endowed, but is dependent for its support entirely on the contributions of benevolent people. It is a noteworthy fact that the first donation was made in 1858 by a child four years of age, Charles H. Hackemeier, who gave the sum of one dollar from his little savings. The next contributor was Mr. Voepel, who gave ten dollars.
From its humble beginning with one orphan in 1858 its benevolent work has increased till now it has two hundred and thirty-five inmates. To the watchful care and efficient labors of Mr. Nollau the early success of the institution was largely due.
Franz Hackemeier, the superintendent of the Asylum, was born in Hanover, Germany, May 8, 1831. He received an ordinary education in the schools of his native place, but did not acquire a trade or profession. In the autumn of 1844, with his parents, he left the land of his nativity, and on the 1st of January, 1845, they arrived in St. Louis.
During their first summer here he and his father labored in a brick-yard; then they were employed in a lead-factory until the death of his father in the fall of 1846. The support of four brothers and sisters devolved on him, and he continued for a year to labor in the factory by day, and at night sold newspapers. He then learned the business of a tobacconist, which he followed until 1849. In the spring of that year he entered the clothing house of Young & Brothers, first as an errand-boy. He soon came to be superintendent of the store, and continued in that capacity until 1856, except during a short interval. In that year he and his brother-in-law embarked in the dry-goods and clothing trade on Franklin Avenue, in which they continued until 1861. He then during a year collected funds for the Good Samaritan Hospital,
after which, on account of his health, he engaged until 1869 in farming. On the death of Rev. L. Nollau, he became superintendent of the German Protestant Orphan Asylum, which position he has since continued to fill. He has been a director of the Good Samaritan Hospital and of the Orphan Asylum from the commencement of those institutions.
His mother died in June, 1849, and he was married in 1851 to Miss Mary Piper, who is now matron of the Orphan Asylum. They have one son, Charles H. Hackemeier.
The poverty and hardships of Mr. Haekemeier's early life served to strengthen the benevolence and sympathy with the unfortunate with which he was endowed by nature, and to fit him for the career of usefulness which it has been his good fortune to pursue.
Lutheran Orphans' Home. The German Evangelical Lutheran Orphans' Home ("Zum Kindlein Jesu"), with which is connected an asylum for aged and indigent members of the denomination, was erected in 1867 by the German Evangelical Lutheran Hospital Association of St. Louis. This association was incorporated in 1863 by an act of the Missouri Legislature. The first building erected was a log house, which is still in use. In 1873 a brick building forty-five by fifty-five feet in size, three stories in height, with a Mansard roof, was erected, and dedicated on the 8th of June in that year. In 1882 a frame building for an orphan school was erected.
Since the erection of the first building three hundred and eighty children have been cared for in the Home. The present number is one hundred, and there are ten aged and infirm men and women cared for at the establishment.
The Home is located at Des Peres, on the Manchester road, fifteen miles from St. Louis. Forty acres of land belong to the Home, and the value of the whole is ten thousand dollars.
The first president of this asylum was the late Rev. Johann Freidrich Buenger, who at his death in 1882 was succeeded by the present president, Rev. Christlieb C. E. Brandt, pastor of the Evangelical Lutheran St. Paulus' Church of St. Louis.
The first superintendent of the asylum was the late Rev. E. H. Lehman, of Des Peres. The present superintendent is Ernst Leirbner. The teacher is Heinrich Keller.
Meramec township is composed of United States townships 43 (north of the Meramec River), 44, and 45 of range 3 east, and the two western ranges of sections in range 4 east, having the Meramec River as its southern boundary till Antire Creek is reached, thence through Bunkum on the line of township 43. Its western line joins Franklin on the line of range 2 east, a distance of twelve miles. At a very early period in the history of the State the township was a locality of great importance, owing to the fact that it was the frontier of advancing civilization and a breastwork for the protection of the growing Western emporium, and the key to its gates. The irregular character of most of its surface, composed of great heights and deep ravines, gave it great strategic importance in the struggles with the Indians. From it the upper Missouri country was explored, and in it a citizens' guard was formed to repress the Indians and the no less to be dreaded white marauders. Great encouragement was given by the French and Spanish governments, and subsequently by that of the United States, to the formation of frontier volunteer companies and scouts, and deeds of daring and danger and cases of suffering and sacrifice were common, and stamped the character of the people with open-hearted hospitality, and were rewarded by liberal grants of land.
The origin of the name is involved in obscurity, and quite a number of different versions are current
among the traditions of the early settlers. Mahr-ah-mec is given as the Indian for the water of the bitter springs, with no point obvious to-day. Again, Mah-ah-mac refers in the Indian to the waters of death, from the reputed unhealthiness of its banks in malarial seasons and to its fatality to swimmers, tempted into its beautiful waters, to be caught in a cold stream flowing from numerous springs, by inducing cramps and death by drowning. Some trace the name to the river of the smoking springs, from the spring in which it originates and from the numerous columns of vapor seen, in the frosty air of winter, from the surrounding hills. Others say it means catfish stream, and yet others trace it to the Merrimac of New Hampshire. A very pleasing and plausible version is based on a very early and rare house of entertainment near the site of the present town of Franklin and near the St. Louis County line, kept by Mac Young. This was the great rendezvous of the scout, hunter, trapper, fisher, trader, and settler. In its management he was ably assisted by a noble-hearted wife named Mary, and it was talked of as a rendezvous, base of operations, source of supplies, as Mary and Mac's, till the brief appellation was applied to the entire river and adjacent country. The Youngs are historic characters, and Robert Young King, born in 1812, and now postmaster of Oakfield, takes his middle name from them.
Indian relics, implements, camps, and trails are quite numerous. On the line of the old King's Highway, the oldest road known, running along the south edge of the township (on the first bluff) are numerous well-marked "mounds" containing pottery, arrow-heads, etc., of which William H. Coleman and his brother, State Senator R. G. Coleman, have fine collections. In the excavations for the senator's new residence many fine specimens of pottery were found. On Tavern Creek, just west of the county line, is a large, well-defined fortified village, with a circle of defensive out-works. The cave in Tavern Rock has numerous inscriptions and remains. A cave in the bluff opposite the Boxley bridge, sections 9, 45, 4 east, is another place rich in relics, and no doubt connected with the mounds on the bluff. On the south edge of the township, between the mouth of Flat Creek, sections 30, 44, 3 east, and L. D. Votaw's, along the bank of the Meramec was an old village, and great quantities of pottery used to be plowed up. The Shawnees were here till 1812, and single families much later. A curious cave exists on the west fork of Fox Creek, sections 30, 31, 44, 3 east, containing Indian remains, and traditions say it is connected by a subterranean communication with Tavern Cave on the Missouri River, and one of the numerous caves on the Meramec. Arrow-heads, axes, pelt-knives, and other implements of stone are very frequently turned up by the plow, and there are few farmers who have none of them. George Letterman, of Allentown, makes a specialty of collecting them. The Shawnees frequented this locality, and were quiet and generally liked. The Delawares were also peaceable. The Pawnees, Cherokees, and Osages were not trusted, but the Kickapoos were thievish, cruel, and generally dreaded. They frequently visited and camped at the large springs as late as 1832. John Ball, from Kentucky, one of the very earliest settlers, tells of an Indian prophecy in 1780. In that year honey-bees began to be seen on the wild-flowers, and an old Indian told him that when "the white man's fly" appeared, the Indian had to move; "that the white man would push out the red race, and the black man would in turn take the country from the white race."
The Koonce massacre was an incident associated with one of the oldest families of the neighborhood. Towards the close of the last century, perhaps 1795, a band of Kickapoos and Omahas murdered nearly all the Koonce family, in the town of St. Charles, then the principal city west of the Mississippi River, and took a baby boy, the youngest of the family, away with them. The boy's niece, Mary Koonce, became the wife of John Votaw, and mother of L. D. Votaw, and settled on the old "Votaw place." The Shawnees had their village near, and a band of them lived beside them till about 1820. The head man, "George," was very friendly, and on intimate terms with the family, and knew of their relationships. About 1826 a band of Shawnees visited their old haunts, and the head, or the interpreter, was "George." He informed the Votaw family that he had found young Koonce, now a "brave," and would try to persuade him to visit them when he returned to his tribe. He kept his word, and Koonce and several children visited his relations, and remained a year among them, but finally returned to his tribe among the Omaha Indians in Wyoming in 1831, and has never been heard of since.
On the north edge of the township, and running nearly parallel with the Missouri River, there still exists the great "Indian trail" adopted by the Spanish adventurer and silver-hunter, then named the "King's Highway," which led to the "Upper Missouri Country," as all west of St. Louis County was then called, to Santa Fé and the West. It commences near Bellefontaine, and passing Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur takes the continuation of the Olive Street road on the
bluffs, St. Charles on the opposite side of the river being then, and till 1826, the principal city of the State. The rich bottom-lands of the Missouri River presented extraordinary inducements for settlement, and this desire was cordially met and encouraged by the early commandants as creating a cheap and efficient protection to the other portions of the county, and to the city itself. The traders, voyageurs, and Indians grazed their fattening cattle in these rich bottom-lands to fit them for the consumption of the city and military posts; hence, we find the Spanish grants running from 102, James McDonald, 122, 124, 132, 133, 134, and upward. Among these grants were those in Florissant, the garden spot of the county, and the celebrated prairies of Carondelet township, between the Meramec and Mississippi Rivers, in surveys 110, 111, and 403. Many of these grants bear the signature of Zenon Trudeau in 1796, and the direct descendants of most of the grantees are still in possession of portions of them.
Along the south side of the township, at irregular distances from the Meramec River, ran the old "State road," traced by the Indians, used by the French hunters, trappers, and adventurers, and the Courtois, Moreaus, Bitticks, Poilevres, Fortins, and Farrahs, antedating the time when the Spanish-French possessions became territory of the United States. This old State road ran in behind St. Paul, past the Ninian Hamilton place, now the Catholic Protectorate, north of Eureka, Allenton, and Dozier's, to Mary and Mac's, and then far beyond was the key that opened the south side of the township. As the upper ends of the hollows and intervales from the two rivers and pathways were settled, pathways were opened up on the great "backbone" of the Osage range, and the centre of the township was opened through its whole length by the great State or Rock road. Jefferson City became the capital of the State in 1826, with a tri-weekly mail, carried on horseback. In 1836 a daily mail was granted between Jefferson and St. Louis, which opened the way for the stages started by Thomas L. Price, of Jefferson City. The road was graded and graveled in 1852-58 as part of a plan of public improvement championed by Olly Williams, of the St. Louis County Court, and is to-day the just pride of every citizen. The stage that destroyed the horseback "mail courier" was itself in turn supplanted by the locomotive on the opening of the Missouri Pacific Railroad.
The connecting link between the Missouri, Meramec, and Mississippi Rivers was an "Indian trail" from St. Albans, on the Missouri River, through Melrose, through the grounds of William Muir, thence on the divide between Clifty and Fox Creeks, where it was joined by the mail route from Samuel Harris', thence above and parallel with Clifty Creek to Eureka and the mouth of Big River, and the Meramec to Hillsboro' and Herculaneum, on the Mississippi.
For many years after Upper Louisiana was ceded to the United States the nearest flour-mill was that at Chouteau's Pond, on Ninth and Poplar Streets, St. Louis, whence the breadstuffs were transported on horses, as there were neither wagons nor wagon-roads in the country. Many were the races and stratagems to avoid the Indians, and many the tale of hunger and of hardship in the settler's family from the bread-bearer being overhauled by the robber race.
Ninian Hamilton set up a horse-mill on survey 766, which was supplanted by a water-mill and bark-mill for tanning by Henry McCullough, who carried on along with his tannery a shoemaking establishment that not only supplied the surrounding country, but enabled him to ship large quantities to a brother in the South, often employing eight men. Afterwards Samuel Harris erected a mill at the original Fox Creek post-office and tavern, section 19, 44, 3 east, and a mill was also built by Adolph Kehr, near Chesterfield. Several small mills were set up at different points. In 1854, T. R. Allen built a grist- and saw-mill with wool cards at Allenton. About the same time a grist- and saw-mill was built by Woods, Christy & Co., of St. Louis, at Glencoe, and run by Messrs. Bushy, Cyrus Turner, Parr, and others till about 1868. Fenn's mill and broom-handle factory was erected near Howell's Ferry, and burned down about 1867. Robert Eatherton, along with Messrs. Eickerman & Woolsey, of St. Louis, erected a splendid mill with all the modern appurtenances and improvements at Orrville, at a cost of thirty-two thousand dollars, which ran about a year, and was burned down in 1868 and never rebuilt. In 1872, Frederick Hencken put up a neat grist- and saw-mill on the State road at Fox Creek, with two sets of burrs and a circular saw (since sold), at a cost of about three thousand five hundred dollars. In 1880 a saw-mill was set up at Allenton, run a short time, and removed to Fox Creek bottom. Besides these, quite a number of small mills are run by thresher engines. About 1818 a distillery was operated on the McCourtenay tract. The cider of a fine orchard planted there, and now in the channel of the Missouri River, was, along with corn, used in distillation. Andrew Hamilton had a distillery on his place, as is previously noted.
The Glencoe Valley Lime-Works are situated in
sections 10, 14, 44, 3 east, and call into economic use and give value to several natural products that have for years been regarded as worthless. About 1868, Samuel Terry, from Ohio, bought the Mulligan tract, in this valley. Close examination and test revealed great beauty and durability in the rock of the bluffs, which present vast mural formations on each side. So promising were the prospects that a joint-stock company (the Glencoe Marble Company) was formed, a side-track laid from Glencoe Station, Missouri Pacific Railroad, and fine steam machinery procured to saw the rock into slabs, etc., which were greatly admired. The track was afterwards extended to fine variegated gravel and paint-clay deposits farther up the valley. William Gowans, familiarly known as "Tennessee," put in the first blasts with single-drill bores; now six to ten cans of powder is no uncommon charge. The cost of transportation so embarrassed operations that the Marble Company gave up business in a few years. In 1868, John Oliver, then manager of the Bagot farm, experimented with the several strata of rocks with a view to the production of lime, and a small kiln was erected on the Bagot place, which gave such assurances of success that a large kiln was built on the opposite side of the valley in 1876.
The quarries of the Marble Company were leased by a company for lime-burning, and a kiln put up. The lime was so well received that other kilns were added to keep pace with the demand, and the works fell into the hands of Cobb, White & Case, of Portland, Me. The lower kiln, operated by Eink & Oliver, was bought out by the same firm, and has John Oliver as resident manager, while David Thomas manages the upper works. The kilns produce about four hundred bushels of lime every twenty-four hours, which is in demand all over the West and South. About seven cords of wood are consumed by each every twenty-four hours, about one hundred men are employed, and twenty-nine thousand dollars of working capital represented.
The managers have about three hundred head of sheep to graze the lands. A prosperous village has sprung up, with a population of about one hundred inhabitants. Never-failing springs abound; building and dimension rock is worked; sand-rock is shipped to St. Louis to use in bottoms of steel-melting pots; the schist or flints are used to mix with fire-clays at the retort-works; paint-clays of several colors are dug, and gravel of several kinds forms mosaic walks for the landscape gardener, and the common gravel, everywhere abounding, forms almost indestructible roads.
John Oliver, resident manager and originator of the lower lime-works, to whose restless energy much of the success of the industrial enterprises of the valley can be traced, was born in Northampton County, Pa., in 1833. He came to Missouri in 1856, and began his lime experiments in 1868, while managing the farm of his father-in-law, Joseph Bagot, of the St. Louis Glass-Works, and to whose knowledge of metallurgic chemistry and financial liberality much of the success of the industries of the valley is traceable. Mr. Bagot died May 28, 1867, in the prime of active life, with a high record and within easy grasp of affluence.
Mr. Oliver has never mingled with active political life or held office, has been a promoter of industry, the active patron of agricultural and horticultural progress, a practical farmer, and a thorough family man.
Andrew Crawford opened a quarry on quite an extensive scale near Eureka. He had a side-track and all the needed appliances, and worked for several years getting out building rock. The cost of transportation and competition of rock nearer the city compelled him to relinquish the enterprise.
A fine quality of building rock is found north of Allenton, which was used with fine effect in the construction of the county farm buildings.
T. M. Hunt worked a fine sand-face on the county line near Pacific. It produces a fine quality of pure glass-sand that is shipped to St. Louis, Pittsburgh, and other points for making glass. The railroads cut through a hill of this sand-rock of remarkable character in this vicinity.
Mineralogical specimens of great interest and value are frequently found. Ores of zinc and lead, containing silver, iron, barytes, are found in some localities in quantity. Large slabs of shells, forming beautiful tablets, are found abounding on the highest hills, and rare specimens are obtained in the quarries. In the débris of the ravines fine specimens of pebble, carnelian, onyx, and other gems are found.
Agricultural pursuits occupy the large proportion of the people, and many large, productive farms exist. Wheat, corn, and potatoes of very high quality are produced, with rye, hay, millet, etc. Hemp and tobacco, formerly staples, are now given up.
Horticulture has received great attention, and is found both a pleasant and profitable investment. Apples and peaches are the staples. The apricot has done well where tried, and has in some places been found quite profitable. The pear, cherry, and plum are moderately successful, and the small fruits can always be depended on. Wild native fruits are abundant. The service-berry, persimmon, mulberry, and papaw are of high character, and persistent efforts are being put forth to domesticate them, and with the
most flattering success. Some new fruits of especial excellence have originated here. A fine yellow October peach, the "Pond," originated in the Essen orchard at the Pond Store, and is widely disseminated. "Aunt Susan's Favorite" is a fine large showy striped apple, ripening in the end of August. It came from seed planted in 1837 by Mrs. Susannah Tippett at "Cedar Groves," on the State road. It has gained a wide celebrity.
On the farm of William H. Coleman is one of the very largest of apples (yellow, overspread with russet, ripens in October), of very rich, high flavor. It came from seed sown by a colored man in 1856. The seed come from Spencer Tyler, in St. Charles County.
The seedless persimmon obtained by William Muir, on the edge of the county, is a wildling of very high character, and will be appreciated as a new departure in native fruits.
Two nurseries are established in the township. Erich Essen, near Orrville, makes peaches and grapes a specialty, and William Muir, on the Allenton-Glencoe and State roads, makes "native plants" a specialty, along with a general nursery and ornamental stock.
A few native animals still exist here. The red fox, wild-cat, mink, skunk, opossum, and raccoon are common. The musk-rat still frequents the creeks and ponds. Occasionally a colony of beavers appears on the Missouri River. Last season a number have settled in a belt of cottonwood on the land of William H. Coleman and cut down quite large trees. There have been three trapped, and the skins sold at a high figure. The gray and fox squirrels, chipmunk, and rabbit abound. Deer are often seen, sometimes killed. Several have been killed this winter.
The turkey, quail, and pheasant still haunt the woods and fields, but are too recklessly killed, even in violation of stringent laws and protective societies.
Fine fishing is had on the Meramec, which is still, as of old, much frequented by parties for pleasure. Besides the common native varieties, several fine kinds have been introduced by the State Fish Commissioners, and all are wisely protected by law. The cold spring streams of the Meramec are well adapted to the varieties of trout. The fresh-water mussel is common, and fine pearls are sometimes obtained from them. The honey-bee is still found in the woods, but is not a great success in domestication. Honey-dews are very copious some seasons.
The edible morell (Phallus esculentus), erroneously but commonly called here the "mushroom," abounds in April, in the open woods near old post-oak or hickory-trees, and in old apple-orchards. The cultivated mushroom (Agaricus campestris) has followed in the wake of pastoral occupations, and is abundant in old meadow lands in August in favorable seasons.
Red and white clover did not exist in the county at its early settlement, and it was felt to be a great want by stockmen. At an early date Absalom Link, of Fee-Fee, made a visit to Kentucky, and with other articles brought clover-seed, which he sowed and tended till it became a large crop in common use.
The towns and villages in this township are not large in themselves, but possess in an eminent degree that rural feature of large populations clustering around and tributary to them.
Ashland, at the mouth of Fox Creek, on the north bank of the Meramec, was a purely paper town, laid off by a party from Pittsburgh at a very early date, with beautiful plats of steamboats, mills, hotels, etc., but never a building. Several of the owners of corner lots have visited the place and bewailed the scene, and although long ago sold out for taxes it has still an existence on the maps.
Allenton is a pleasant village thirty-two miles west of St. Louis, on the Missouri Pacific and the San Francisco Railroads. It is situated in a strikingly beautiful valley, extending from Pacific to the mouth of Flat Creek, a distance of about eight miles, and presents, especially at its western end, some striking marks of "water-wear" on the rocks that form the edges of the valley. The view from the hills on the north is serene and lovely in a high degree. The town was laid out by Thomas R. Allen in 1852 upon the north edge of the Courtois tract.
Among the original owners of lots were John Demier, John Des Moulins, W. C. Turner, William J. Meyers, Richard Ivers, John Fleming, Louis Leudwig, C. S. Prongue, James S. Phelps, Mrs. Chamberlain. On the north side of the railroad track were several buildings not within the charter limits. The mill erected by Mr. Allen has been noticed. The buildings are generally neat and clean, and display much floral taste. I. C. Brown has a fine residence on the east side of the town, and a large farm close adjoining, with an extensive orchard. The store and post-office kept by F. Wengler is large and commodious, with a large brick addition. George W. Foster erected a fine brick building on the site of the Phelps house. Nelson W. Allen occupies the old family mansion. There are several fine residences within view, those of the late William Harris and the Hon. R. C. Allen being most conspicuous. Besides the store and post-office, there are a saloon and meat-shop and a blacksmith-shop. There is a fine district school building in the village, and a colored school is kept in the old school building to the west. There is a literary
society, and the village is noted for the sociability and intelligence of its inhabitants. G. Letterman, the teacher, a native of Pennsylvania, has occupied that position for thirteen years, and is a botanist, geologist, and antiquarian.
The county farm-buildings, just north of the village, on the Lawler-McPherson land, sections 33, 34, 44, 3 east, were projected before the separation of the city and county, on a magnificent scale, the estimated cost being two millions of dollars. Work was suspended after the foundation and first stories had been built, and the ruins remain, a stupendous waste of labor and capital.
The fruit farm of the Allen heirs, one of the largest and best in the county, is on a portion of the Courtois tract, just south of the town.
Thomas Rowland Allen, who laid off the town, was born in Frederick County, Va., on the 5th of March, 1815. His father, Robert L. Allen, died there at the age of eighty-four. In 1838 he married Diana Snapp and came to Missouri, in 1839 settling near Chesterfield, and taught school. In 1846 he removed to St. Louis and entered business as a wholesale and retail grocer. In 1851 his wife died of cholera. By her he had five children, all of whom are now dead. In 1853 he married Dorothea Adelia, daughter of Capt. Wash, of Virginia, then living near Kirkwood. When he laid out Allenton he built and removed his family there. The mill is noticed in another place. He was justice of the peace about 1854, and township assessor in 1861. While in that office at his own expense he collected the first agricultural and horticultural statistics of the township, and this led to the appointment of a State commissioner of statistics in 1866. He was an original member of the Meramec Horticultural Society, and on the 25th of August, 1870, became a charter member and master of the first grange in Missouri Meramec, No. 1, organized by O. H. Kelly, of Washington, D. C., secretary of the National Grange. He was appointed general State deputy in 1871. In 1872 the State Grange was organized, and he was elected master. He was elected in 1872 for a second terra, and in 1876 was elected chaplain. He died Feb. 3, 1878. His wife and three sons survive.
Isaiah Clark Brown, whose large property and fine residence adjoins Allenton, was born near Dozier's. His grandfather, John Brown, came from Kentucky in 1796, and settled in Florissant, upon a grant from the Spanish Government. He moved to Fox Creek, on the Leonard Farrah survey, No. 148, in 1812, sold it to Doty, who in turn sold it to William Harris in 1825; moved to near Kirkwood, and died in 1840.
Benjamin Griffin Brown, one of two sons who reached maturity, was born in 1796, married a daughter of William Inks, and moved to the Bittick survey, No. 2010, in 1840. Bittick sold to William Inks, who came from Kentucky with the Votaws and others, and settled on the farm now owned by Augustus Wengler, in 1802. B. G. Brown taught school for many years. The first school-house was built on the William Harris place, and taught by Mr. Edwards. Mr. Brown was justice of the peace for several years, and township assessor from 1844 to 1848. He died at his home on the 15th of March, 1872; his wife, born in 1801, having died the day before. Both were buried at the same time. The orchard he planted in 1816 still exists and bears some good fruit. The children were Isaiah C., John T., Martha (who died young), Cyrus, and Andrew.
Isaiah, the oldest, was born in 1825. He was deputy sheriff of St. Louis for three years, during the terms of Lebeaume and Maddox; was two years in the county marshal's office under David McCullough; was coroner in 1852-54; dram-shop collector one year; and superintendent of the county farm nine years. He married in St. Louis, and has two children grown.
Fox Creek, near by on the west, was so named by an early hunter from Bridgeton, who shot a very large fox there. Foxes are still numerous in that vicinity.
Frederick Wengler, postmaster and store-keeper of Allenton, came with his father, William Wengler, from near Dusseldorf, on the Rhine, with Paffrath Steines and others, in 1834. The father settled near Fiddle Creek, and died of cholera in 1849. His family were William, Frederick, Augustus, Albert, Minnie, and Otto. Frederick went to Judge McCullough in 1836 to learn tanning and shoemaking. He married Agnes Pyatt in 1842. He held a pre-emption and located one hundred and fifty-seven acres in section 33, 44, 3 east, which, he still farms. The remainder of the valley was taken up by John Pyatt. He opened a store in 1854, and in 1861 bought the present store from F. R. Allen; was appointed postmaster in 1860, was mail agent on the Missouri Pacific Railroad for several years about 1864, and was superintendent of the county farm from 1870 to 1874. He has quite a large family, of whom William C. is the oldest. He was for several years station agent, then deputy United States collector in St. Louis, deputy sheriff of the county under Robert Schnecks, and is now deputy county clerk. The oldest daughter is the wife of the Hon. R. C. Allen. William C. Inks, son of William Inks, who came
with the Votaws from Kentucky in 1803, lived on the old place on survey 2010. He owned considerable property, and laid off Pacific City, in Franklin County. He married Ann Eliza King, from near Manchester, and had a large family of daughters. He died on the 24th of September, 1864.
William Harris, the oldest son of Samuel Harris, of Fox Creek, was born at Fee-Fee in 1809. He married Easter, youngest daughter of Josiah McClure, born March 31, 1816. He bought the pre-emption of the home place, section 33, 44, 3 east, from Joseph Inks. He also bought one hundred and fifty acres from Doty, section 3, 44, 3 east (the Benjamin G. Brown place), with its fine orchard. He opened a store near the creek near the railroad bridge in 1851-52, and sold out to John T. Brown. He was elected a member of the State Legislature in 1854-55, along with Francis P. Blair, B. Gratz Brown, Thomas H. Benton, and other celebrities, and polled a larger vote than Col. Benton. His family consisted of two sons and two daughters, of whom only one survives, Missouri Frances, wife of I. J. Collins. He was an enthusiastic farmer and fruit-grower, a great reader, and an original thinker. He died March 28, 1881, and was buried in the McClure cemetery. His brother Joseph was killed in the Gasconade railroad bridge disaster, in November, 1856. He was twice married. His son by the first wife, James Rennick, is a cord-wood merchant in St. Louis.
Josiah McClure came from Bowling Green, Ky., in 1819. He remained for a time at Fee-Fee, and bought property on Fox Creek, in section 4, 44, 3 east. He married Sarah Harris in Virginia, April 16, 1793. The family consists of eight daughters and one son. Of these, Easter, the youngest, is the widow of William Harris. He died in 1826. He donated an acre of ground as a public cemetery at a very early date. It still bears his name.
Andrew McClure, the sixth child of Josiah, was born Oct. 21, 1805. He was a widely-known citizen, and died on Nov. 1, 1877, leaving one son, William, and three daughters still alive.
Hon. Robert C. Allen owns and farms the McClure place. He has a handsome brick residence, with grove and lawn convenient to the farm buildings, and near the railroad bridge over Fox Creek. He was born in Brooklyn, N. Y., in 1836, was in Iowa a short time, and came to Missouri in 1857. On the breaking out of the war he assisted Gen. Francis P. Blair to raise a battalion, and in 1861 was chosen captain of Co. A, and was United States mail agent on the Missouri Pacific Railroad in 1862-63. At the time of Gen. Price's raid he joined the Fortieth Missouri Regiment, and was captain of Co. K. He was mustered out in the spring of 1865, and was appointed judge of the County Court by Governor Thomas C. Fletcher. In 1866 he was elected judge of the County Court, and re-elected to the same office three terms in succession; was commissioner of roads and bridges in the new county in 1879, and has been elected to represent the Second District in both the Thirty-first and Thirty second General Assemblies.
He married Minnie, eldest daughter of Frederick Wengler, and has six children living and two dead.
Eureka is thirty miles west of St. Louis, on the Missouri Pacific Railroad, in the corner of survey 3206, part of the Louis Courtois, Jr., tract. It was laid out in 1858 by Meesrs. Strodt & Shands, of St. Louis. It has a fine business position, the country roads to Bunkum, Big River, Antire, Bald Hill, Glencoe, Allenton, and Clifty Creek, all centring there. It is surrounded by a fine agricultural and fruit country. There are about one hundred houses in and immediately surrounding the village. There is a church (Methodist Episcopal Church South), the foundation is laid for a Catholic chapel, and an Episcopal chapel is being subscribed for. There are also a district school, Freemasons' Hall, post-offices, three stores, two blacksmiths and wagon-makers, and a saloon. The Methodist Church is a very neat frame building, cost about one thousand two hundred dollars, besides donations and labor, and was dedicated by the venerable Dr. McAnally, Aug. 8, 1880. The membership numbers about forty, and has a flourishing Sunday-school. The Catholic families number about fifteen. The sites for both churches were donated by Peter M. Brown.
The Masonic Hall is a large, substantial frame building owned by a joint-stock company of Masons, and represents two thousand five hundred dollars of stock. Meramec Lodge, No. 95, meets there. It was organized Nov. 22, 1877, with the following officers and charter members: Samuel R. Woods, W. M.; Daniel Cleary, S. W.; August Guttermuth, J. W.; Charles Vanhorn, S. D.; David Horn, J. D.; Frederick Wengler, Treas.; George Hornecker, Sec.; Samuel G. Trower, Tyler; R. C. Allen, James Everett, J. B. H. Beale, R. A. Lewis, John Weiss, Charles Paffrath.
Thomas Thomas, postmaster, store-keeper, and notary public, was born in Manchester, England, in 1822; came to the United States in 1844; enrolled as a volunteer in the Mexican war in Buffalo, N. Y., in 1846, and served till its close, and located a bounty warrant on Big River in 1848. He moved to Eureka in 1856; served in the Fifth Missouri Cavalry for two
years during the civil war; was justice of the peace for three terms; is married, and has a family mostly grown up.
George Hornecker was born in Haguenau, Alsace, in 1830; came to St. Louis in January, 1853, and graduated in Roher's Commercial College. He began business in Eureka as a general merchant in 1865; was elected justice of the peace in 1878; has for years been a prominent Mason, holding high positions in the lodge; is married, and has a young family. His father came to the United States in 1855, and is yet living.
Several distinguished men have been residents in this vicinity. Edward William Johnston, brother of Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, lived from 1860 to 1866 on his farm at Waldstein's Switch. He was a brilliant political writer, and died in St. Louis in 1867. His wife died the day after him, and they were buried together. The venerable Maj. Beale was a native of Virginia; was a veteran of 1812; lived for many years with his son, Dr. J. B. H. Beale, and was for many years justice of the peace; he died in December, 1881.
James Brown and Peter M. Brown, brothers, are two of the leading citizens of the county. They took up their permanent residence in Eureka in 1865, on giving up their life occupation of farmers. They came to Missouri with their father, Russell Brown, from Virginia in 1818, James being twelve and Peter M. ten years old. They traveled from Bellefontaine by the "old King's Highway," and settled near Labadie, on the Missouri River, where they remained till 1839. At that time they moved to a New Madrid grant in Jefferson County, on the Meramec River, opposite Eureka. James married Melinda Cochrane, of Lincoln County, on the 9th of April, 1829. She died March 5, 1874, having lived together nearly forty-five years. His father died in 1843. Of the family two are still alive, Miss Henrietta and Joseph A., justly esteemed for the wisdom of his counsels on the critical questions arising out of the separation of the city and county. At that time he filled the office of county counselor and prosecuting attorney.
Lorenzo Dow Votaw is the representative of two of the oldest families in the State. His grandfather, John Votaw, came from Kentucky in 1803, accompanied by his sons John, Henry, and Isaac, and his brother-in-law, William Inks. George Smith, McKeage, Williams, and Benjamin Terry came about two years after. John Votaw died in 1828, and was buried in St. Louis. John, the oldest son, was born in Kentucky in 1797; entered United States land in section 32, 44, 3 east, and married Mary Koonce, born in St. Charles City in 1794. His family consisted of seven sons, Lorenzo Dow, Silas P. (in California), Felix A. (died in St. Louis when quite young), John A. (in California), George Wash (died in Texas in 1866), Nicholas Marion (died in McDonald County in 1878), Landon J. (died in Texas in 1868).
Lorenzo Dow, baptized and named after the celebrated Methodist missionary preacher of that name, was born Oct. 25, 1820. He married Pauline Keatley, of Franklin, Dec. 29, 1841, by whom he had a son, Alonzo W. She died in 1852. He then married Eliza Robertson, of Manchester, Mo., who had a daughter, Laura A., and died in 1859. He married Elizabeth H. Davis, who died Jan. 5, 1883. The elder Votaw planted an orchard of seedlings about 1816, of which a few proved of great value, especially the Walton. The trees are almost entirely gone. When quite young he went a few days to a school kept on Clifty Creek by a man named McIlvain, who was killed in a cave on the Mississippi River a few years after. When a boy he helped to make whiskey for the traders at Christmas-time, ran races, and traded among the Indians along with his uncle, and was a great favorite and on intimate terms with them. The year of running off the Indians is often referred to by the old settlers, and was 1814-16, when the settlers united and went out to punish the Indians in the upper Missouri country and in Illinois for numerous thefts, murders, and general insubordination.
Samuel Pruitt settled on survey 1975, the site of St. Paul, and was regarded as the oldest settler on this edge of the county.
Glencoe, a station and small village on the Missouri Pacific Railroad, twenty-six miles west of St. Louis, where Hamilton Creek empties into the Meramec, was laid out about 1854 by Woods, Christy & Co., of St. Louis, and is the switch-point of the Glencoe valley track. It contains a few houses and small store, but for about a year has had no post-office. There are some fine residences in its immediate neighborhood. "Glencoe Heights," northeast of the depot, was built by Robert K. Woods about 1855, and is now the property of William L. Ewing. It is a fine frame pavilion, with the finest ornamental trees and plants and a choice orchard. Northwest of it is the fine concrete residence of Alfred Carr, with a stately lawn and fine meadows. It has one of the finest orchards in the county. Southwest of the depot, and almost overhanging it, is the summer residence of B. W. Lewis, of St. Louis, with a fine orchard. Still farther south is "River Craig," the imposing concrete house built by A. W. Alexander, from which a magnificent view is obtained.
The Orphan Protectorate, a charitable institution for the care of orphan boys, is about a mile north of the depot. It was founded and is principally maintained by the Catholics of St. Louis. From sixty to one hundred boys are there cared for and educated. The establishment is in charge of the Christian Brothers, and was opened in 1872, and was under the care of Brother Leo, as managing director, in 1876-78. He was the pioneer of the Protectorate at Westchester, N. Y. Brother Tertullian relieved Brother Leo in 1878, and continued till 1882, when Brother Leo was again put in charge. A lay board of directors in St. Louis manages the finances, and gives direction to the operations of the institution. There is a resident priest at the Protectorate, and regular daily morning services are held besides the Sunday services. There are about five regular assistants, and farm hands are employed as needed. The boys work on the farm, and attend school in relays.
The lands consist of about three hundred and twenty acres, of which two hundred are under cultivation. There is a fine garden, orchard, and vineyard attached, and the usual farm crops. Early vegetables are raised in quantity, and fine milk is made a specialty. Everything is done to render the institution as nearly self-sustaining as possible, and to aid in finishing its buildings, and extending its capacity for good. The buildings consist of offices, reading-room, dormitories, dining-room, etc., in a concrete building erected by James E. Yeatman. A splendid stone building for chapel, lecture-room, schools, etc., is only partly finished. The old Hamilton rock house, the fine concrete dairy-house, and large barns are apart from the principal buildings, and are in use in the agricultural operations. Some of the original Ninian Hamilton orchard trees still exist, and a neat, partly artificial pond in front adds to the attractiveness of the retreat. The Protectorate property is situated in the northern portion of the Ninian Hamilton grant.
Ninian Hamilton came from Kentucky in 1803 along with his father, also Ninian, who located survey one hundred and twenty-four. Ninian was born in Kentucky, 1783, and settled on survey seven hundred and sixty-six, where the old State road crossed the valley. He built a house, and was one of the most enterprising men of the times. He married and had five sons and four daughters, and died about 1834. Ninian (2) was born in 1809, and died in 1856. His grandmother died in 1851, aged one hundred and four. The heirs sold to A. S. Mitchell, who in turn sold to James E. Yeatman, who erected the fine concrete house, and the first in the neighborhood, about 1856. To aid in the construction of the house a lime-kiln was erected, by the creek, and fine lime made, which was the inception of the extensive lime-works in the valley. Andrew Hamilton, fourth son of Ninian (1), bought the Spanish grant, survey two thousand and twenty-three, and operated a distillery. He sold to John Whitsett, of North Carolina, whose heirs sold to Thomas F. Ackerman, M. D. Heltzell, and others.
Judge Henry McCullough was born in Kentucky in 1788, and married Priscilla Smith, born in 1787, and the sister of Ninian Hamilton's wife. He was married three times, and had a very large family. He entered land in sections 14, 44, 3 east, and bought a fractional 40 from N. Hamilton for a mill-site. He had a tannery, shoe-factory, and bark- and grist-mill, and was a most enterprising man. He was justice of the peace about thirty years, and judge of the county court from 1849 to 1852. He died July 6, 1853. His last wife, née Delila Hamilton, was killed by a car on the Glencoe Valley Road, opposite her own door, Aug. 23, 1876, in the seventy-sixth year of her age. His son David was for many years marshal of the city of St. Louis.
John Stoy was born in St. Louis in 1801, a son of Dr. Stoy, who had a ferry at Carondelet. Dr. Stoy settled beside Peter Breen at Barret's Station. John settled on the road above Glencoe, sections 5, 44, 4 east. He had a large family, and died May 2, 1882.
Bunkum is a settlement across the river from Glencoe, forming the segment of a circle, with the base extending from near Acker's Ford to opposite St. Paul, and flanked by the Antire hills. The land in the vicinity is very rich, and is thickly settled. There are two schools in Bunkum, and the Lewis Chapel, built and maintained for the greater part by the Lewis family.
Martrom Lewis was one of the earliest settlers. He located in the northeast portion of the county; lived at Lewis Ferry about 1816; married Margaret, daughter of Elijah Brockman, of Virginia, and sister of John and William Brockman. She died without family, and he afterwards married Elizabeth Darby, by whom he had three sons who grew to manhood, Rufus A., Philander P., and Martrom D. He built a frame residence on the bank of the river opposite Glencoe, and was the first station agent there. He cultivated a very large and fine farm.
Rufus A. Lewis married the daughter of Anderson Bowles, justice of the peace, who died April, 1877, leaving quite a large family. He represented the county in the State Legislature in 1852-54, and was township assessor. He is an excellent and extensive farmer.
Philander P. Lewis married Mary Clark, and resides in Bunkum.
Martrom D., the youngest son, succeeded his father as station agent, and studied and practiced law in St. Louis, but still owns property here. He married Susan, daughter of the Hon. Judge Tippett, and has for years been public administrator of St. Louis.
Starting out anew at the west end of the State road, we begin with Samuel Harris, who was born in Virginia in 1787, went to Kentucky with his parents in 1796, and came to near Fee-Fee in 1808. He married Sarah Inks; went against the Indians with the Missouri volunteer scouts in 1812-16; bought out Lambert at the edge of the county, in section 19, 44, 3 east, in 1827; was a carpenter, and kept a tavern and post-office. This was the first office west of St. Louis, and he distributed the mail by rider to Jefferson County, by Hillsboro' and Herculaneum. He erected a small mill; his wife died in 1836, leaving William, Joseph, Lefremsier (in California), James, Wash, and Isaiah C. He married Mrs. Ann Thomas, née Brawley, by whom he had two sons and three daughters. He died in 1851.
Isaiah Clark, his youngest son, was baptized by and named after Rev. John Clark, the early Baptist missionary. He married Miss Turpin, of Allenton, by whom he has a large family, and lives near Fox Creek.
Dutch Hollow. The next point east of the "Sam Harris place" is a picturesque valley on the line of the State road, and embraces portions of sections 17, 19, 20, 44, 3 east. In the upper portion is a neat hamlet, known by the same name, and containing a store, shoemaker's, harness-maker's, two blacksmiths', and a carpenter's shop, and a commodious tavern, with a number of farm-houses quite near. During the California and Kansas emigration this was a celebrated camping-place. It was a relay-point for the Jefferson City stages, and has suffered by the railroad. It is about thirty-one miles from St. Louis.
Charles Paffeath, known far and wide as "mine host, Dutch Charley," was born in Lichtlin, Prussia, in 1809, and came with an uncle, Herman Stein, and others to the United States in 1834. He entered land in section 17, 44, 3 east. His uncle died the same year of cholera, and he married the widow, his senior one year, who died in 1871. He sold out his original entry to Joseph Henseller in 1845, opened store and tavern in "Dutch Hollow," and gave it the name. He graded and graveled the State road from the county line to Judge Tippett's, and in 1858 rented his place and paid a visit to Europe. He had bought a fine piece of land from Miner Ferris, which he greatly improved. The cultivation of fine fruits and vines is with him a passion. He has a fine frame house, in which he still lives.
Melrose is a small hamlet that forms the terminus of mail route 28,457 from St. Louis. It is about three miles south of the Missouri River, on one of the highest points on sections 7, 8, 44, 3 east. It was laid out by Charles H. Haven with great care, as the nucleus of a great "Park of Fruits of One Thousand Acres," about 1851. The first store was opened by Charles Wetter, and the first dwelling-house erected by John Ratford. The home dwelling, "Woodlawn," was a tasteful Gothic cottage, with grounds laid off and planted in the highest style of art. The vineyards and orchards were truly fine, and cost in all about fifteen thousand dollars.
The seminary was a capacious frame building, three stories high, and was intended as a day and boarding-school for young ladies. It was occupied by Mrs. Pinckney, of Philadelphia, and the Rev. Mr. Finlay, of Pennsylvania, for some time. It has also been used as a Catholic chapel and a tenement-house. The property was sold by the sheriff in 1879, and the home grounds and lands were bought by John Wildberger, of Cheltenham. Many of the original buildings have decayed. The store and post-office is a handsome new frame building, owned by Herman Kreinkamp, and occupied by Louis Wackher, the postmaster.
The road from Melrose enters the State road about twenty-nine miles from St. Louis, and opposite the beautiful residence of John Letcher, oldest son of Isaac and Julia (Bobbs) Letcher, of St. Louis. He was born in St. Louis in 1823, and was one of the pupils of Elihu H. Shepard. He married Cornelia, daughter of George C. Frazier and Priscilla Caulk. He taught school for several years, and purchased his present place, section 16, 44, 3 east, in 1858, while it was still in woods, and has brought it up to the present fine condition of "Rose Mount." He is a lover of fine fruits and flowers, and is a principal supporter of Bethel Church and Sunday-school, and an active member of the Good Templars.
Fox Creek is a hamlet on the State road, and derives its name from being the location of the post-office that has so long borne that name, although itself on the head-waters of Wild Horse Creek. The land in section 9, 44, 3 east, was entered by Martin Hencken in 1838, and subsequently added to by purchase from Nathaniel Bacon. Hencken came from Bremerhaven in 1836 with his wife and family, and at the time of his death left a family of five sons and two daughters, all of whom live in the neighborhood except Martin, who
is in New York. His wife died on March 4, 1879, aged eighty-one. Frederick Hencken, his youngest son, began store-keeping in 1859, and was appointed postmaster of Fox Creek post-office in 1860. He married Mary H. Becker, and has a young family. He built a steam mill, noticed elsewhere.
There are now quite a number of buildings in and around Fox Creek, together with a blacksmithy, carpenter, wagon-maker, and undertaker-shops, and a tavern, besides the store and post-office.
Cedar Grove was the residence of Judge Peregrine Tippett, long and well known as one of the most active and intelligent citizens of the county. He came from Maryland about 1832, remained a few years in St. Louis, and entered land in section 3, 44, 3 east, in 1835; laid out a farm, planted a large orchard of choicest fruit, and was an authority as a farmer and pomologist. "Aunt Susan's Favorite" apple originated here from seed sown in 1837 by Mrs. Tippett, née Susanna Lee. In the original orchard, near the site of the "old cabin," stands a service-berry tree of gigantic proportions, at least one hundred feet high and beautifully balanced, in early spring a veritable "mountain of snow."
The judge in early times kept a store and wayside inn, was justice of the peace for many years, and judge of the County Court from 1858 to 1864. He moved to Mississippi and died, leaving two sons and a daughter. One son, Henry, is dead, and the other, Philip Lee, lives in Jackson, Miss. His only daughter, Susan, is married to M. D. Lewis, public administrator of St. Louis City. The property is now owned by Joel R. Frazier, his nephew-in-law.
Philip Tippett bought the farm adjoining his brother, Judge Tippett, from Mark Stevenson. He was born in Maryland in 1804, came to the neighborhood of Chesterfield about 1837, and taught school for many years. He was justice of the peace several years, and clerk of the Court of Common Pleas in St. Louis from 1846 to 1850. He married the widow of George C. Frazier in 1844, by whom he had one son, Josiah, now in Colorado. He was accidentally drowned in the Meramec at Glencoe while fishing, along with his son, in April, 1870. Mrs. Tippet died March 7, 1875.
Joel Richards Frazier is the son of George C. Frazier, from Kentucky, and Priscilla, daughter of Richard Caulk, born July 3, 1804. He was educated in Central College, Missouri, and taught school for many years. He married his cousin, Katherine Frazier, of Kentucky. He owns the Judge Tippett property and the adjoining Walter Shields land, in section 3, 44, 3 east. He was township assessor in 1877-80. He is an active supporter and officer in Bethel Church and Sunday-school, and an earnest promoter of the Law and Order Association. His father, George C., was a man of superior ability and education, taught school near Chesterfield, and in St. Charles County was justice of the peace for several years about 1837, and died about 1841.
Pond, or Speers' Pond, is a small but noted settlement, on the State road, twenty-six miles from St. Louis. It has a store, and post-office of the same name. The land, section 2, 44, 3 east, was pre-empted by John Brockman, from Virginia, in 1835, and was sold to Cyrus Speers (son-in-law of George Ferris), who kept a store and tavern for many years. This was for a long time the "voting-place" for the township, and the scene of many a political fracas. Mr. Speers sold his property to Mr. Hilkenkampf; he to Frederick Dreinhofer, from Osnabruck, Germany.
A new store was put up by Frederick Essen, whose widow married Charles Hillebrand. The store was burned down, and a fine new one erected, which, with the post-office, is managed by the widow of C. Hillebrand.
James Wright came from Virginia about 1840, and settled in section 31, 45, 3 east. He exchanged lands with Louis Bartrow, who settled on sections 11 and 12, 44, 3 east. Mr. Wright married Miss Sweeney, of Maryland, by whom he had one son and daughter, Margaret, wife of John T. Brown. Mrs. Wright died Jan. 8, 1859, aged fifty-three, and he died April 4, 1872, aged sixty-nine.
Thomas M. owns a portion of the property, which he has greatly improved. He married Martha, daughter of John Howell, and has a rising family.
William Eatherton was born in Spottsylvania County, Va., in 1807, and came to Missouri in 1839, settling in Gasconade County. He came to the present place, section 6, 44, 3 east, in 1844, and kept store for several years. He married Frances Pendleton, who died in 1856. In 1858 he married Virginia A., daughter of B. F. Lipscomb, who came from Virginia in 1839, and settled on Wild Horse Creek.
John W. Doss came from Kentucky about 1844, settled in section 31, 45, 4 east, and was justice of the peace for several years.
Ellisville is twenty-two and one-half miles from St. Louis, in section 32, 45, 4 east. The post-office, store, and quite a number of buildings are over the line in Bonhomme township. It was settled by Capt. Harvey Ferris, from Kentucky, before 1837. He built the large "brick house," then a notable structure, and which is still standing. Capt. Ferris sold to Vespuccio Ellis, afterwards United States consul to Venezuela,
and closely associated with the events that culminated in the Mexican war. Mr. Ellis sold to Mr. Hereford, from Virginia, father of Dr. Hereford, of Bridgeton, and Mrs. Dr. Beale, of Eureka. In 1842 he secured the location of a post-office at this point, and named it Ellisville, after his old post-office in Virginia. He sold to Samuel Wilson, and he to Maj. Clarkson, of Kentucky, who in turn sold to Capt. Hutchinson, of steamboat fame, who laid off a large training course, with fine stables, and engaged in the raising of fine horses. He planted extensive orchards, and greatly improved the surroundings and the stock of the country at large. He was, however, disappointed in the results, and subdivided his farm into small lots. Adam Doehring purchased the brick house and a considerable portion of the land.
Leaving the State road and turning to the western edge of the township, we find the following early settlers:
Baldwin Locker, located near the Wild Horse road, was born in Louisa County, Va., March 15, 1803; married Annie Carpenter, of same county, born in 1804. He came to Missouri in 1838, and entered United States land in section 5, 44, 3 east. He had four sons, Louis (dead), Robert, Thomas, and John (in Montana). He died in 1875, and his wife in April, 1877. Both buried in Bethel Cemetery.
Herman Steines came along with C. Paffrath and others in 1834. He settled on section 6, 44, 3 east, and adjoining lands in Franklin County. He taught school for many years, was justice of the peace during several terms, and was assessor of the township for some years. He died, leaving a widow and a number of grown children.
His son Frederick is now justice of the peace, and lives on a portion of the Wm. Hamilton survey, 385.
Rev. Robert G. Coleman came from Spottsylvania County, Va., in 1837, the year of the flood in the Missouri bottom. The "great flood" occurred in 1844, and forms an important epoch in the history of Bonhomme bottom, its marks being yet distinctly visible and a long lake formed where cultivated fields existed. The water was up to the wagon-bed bottom in crossing over from the Lewis Ferry. In 1837, Mr. Coleman bought a part of the McCourtenay tract, and later, portions of the Bell, Caughlin, Henry, and Mackay tracts. This tract bears date from Zenon Trudeau, 1798. Alexander McCourtenay deeded survey 152 to his brother John, and John subsequently to his son Martin. The Rev. R. G. Coleman had four sons, William H., Spencer G. (in Franklin County), John M. (died in 1849), and Robert G. He died about 1842.
William H. Coleman was born in 1815 in Virginia, came to Missouri with his father in 1837, was married to Hardinia Bromley Goodwin, daughter of K. Goodwin, of Lexington, Ky., in 1839. He erected a log house on the place, and in 1848 the present substantial brick mansion.
The river is cutting away the bottom lands here with fearful rapidity, and unless its direction is changed it will sweep on to the bluff. W. H. Coleman has lost at least thirty acres, and Senator Coleman as much.
Mr. Coleman has held no public office, but has ever been the active promoter of public enterprises. He is an earnest Granger, and Bonhomme Grange Hall, built by a joint stock company, is on his land on the Bly place. The Bacon school-house, one of the earliest in the township, was located near the same spot.
Robert Goodwin Coleman, ex-State senator, the youngest son of the Rev. R. G. Coleman, married his cousin, Eliza, daughter of Henry Tyler. The oldest son, John, married Mary, daughter of John Orr, and the oldest daughter married her cousin, Dr. Robert G. Coleman. He built his first house in 1844, and his present residence in 1869. He was elected State senator in 1857, and again in 1877. He was one of the first Good Templars in the county, in the lodge organized at Antioch, in 1856, of which he was Grand Templar.
Henry Tyler came from Caroline County, Va., in 1837, and bought some large tracts of land in the Mackay grant 1955. He had five sons and two daughters, Mrs. Senator Coleman and Mrs. Edmond A. Nickerson, of St. Louis. Capt. William Tyler, brother of Henry, came about 1835, and bought a portion of the Graham grant 134. He had four sons, Zachary, John S. (now dead), Dr. B. R. (now removed from the county), and Alexander L., of St. Louis. He represented the county in the State Legislature about 1840-42, and died in Virginia about 1864. James R. Eatherton now owns the property. Along with Capt. Tyler there came Zachary Tyler and Dr. Halliday, and about the same time William Boxley, Massey, and Daniel Coleman, from Caroline County, Va. William Boxley purchased the Darby property, which he sold again, and went to Southwest Missouri. Dr. R. H. Stevens and his brother came about 1838, and bought largely in the Musick & McDonald tracts, surveys 122 and 150, which he ultimately subdivided and sold, and removed to near Cr&eagrave;ve Coeur.
Orrville is a small hamlet on the edge of the Theophilus McKinnon survey 163, in the beautiful Bonhomme Creek bottom, and takes its name from the Orr family, long settled there. It has a store and
post-office, kept by Gustave Hoppenberg, a school, blacksmith and wagon-maker, and a number of other buildings. The residence of William P. Bacon is a fine frame building, and he is the representative of an old line of settlers.
John Orr and James Orr, brothers, came from the Cow Caddens, Glasgow, Scotland, and bought the Richardson survey 134. John married Maude Eleanor Graham, daughter of Alexander Graham, part of whose farming-lands now form Wild Horse Lake. They had four children, James, Mary, John, and Robert. He died about 1829. William Bell, of survey 909, was Mrs. Bell's uncle and also from Scotland.
James married Elizabeth C. Breckenridge, and died without children.
John Orr, the second, married Margaret, daughter of Parks Bacon. His children are William T., Mary, Walter, and Julia, all married in the neighborhood.
Robert Orr was born in 1829, and bought the Theophilus McKinnon survey 163. In 1849 he married Laura, daughter of Thomas Caulk. He was justice of the peace for six years. He sold to John Hockersmith. He has three sons and four daughters alive.
Richard Caulk came from Maryland; was an officer in the Spanish army, and obtained a grant of four thousand arpens of land. He settled on survey 125; married Sallie, daughter of Lawrence Long, and had six children, Ruenna, Thomas, Priscilla (Mrs. Frazier-Tippett), Ann Eliza (Mrs. Hugh Miller, now in Colorado), Isaac (dead), and Sarah (Mrs. Alton Long).
Thomas Caulk, the oldest son, was born in this county in 1800, and received a grant of six hundred arpens in Pike County for that fact; he settled on survey 126 under Charles Kyle; he married Miss Worthington; was assessor, and was in the State Legislature in 1837, and went to the Indian nation.
The Bacon brothers came from Virginia about 1812. They were William, Ludwille, Nathaniel, and Nicholas. Ludwille entered land at the mouth of Bonhomme Creek; he married a Long; his son Parks married Elizabeth C. Breckenridge, by whom there were four children, of whom Willam P. Bacon and Mrs. Margaret Orr still reside in the vicinity. Nancy, daughter of Ludwille Bacon, married Robert Lewis, from Loutre Island, and had a family, among them Garland and Warner Lewis, the well-known lawyer and editor.
Mrs. Elizabeth C. Hyatt (née Breckenridge) is one of the most notable residents of the neighborhood. She was born in Kentucky in 1797; married Parks Bacon, noted before, and was left a widow; she then married James Orr, uncle of John and Robert Orr, by whom she had a son James. Again widowed, she married N. Ferguson and had two daughters, Mrs. Hockersmith and Mrs. Humes; left a widow for the third time, she married Judge Hyatt, of Florissant, and is yet again a widow, hale, bright, and entertaining.
James Ball lives on Bonhomme Creek, sections 22, 45, 3 east, and is the representative of one of the earliest settlers in the township. His father, James Ball, came from Kentucky with Daniel Boone, and was for many years his close companion. He was an intelligent man, his library in these "wild woods" comprising about fifty volumes, and he had the first family Bible and clock in the township. His family record is most minute and distinct. Although a small man, he was brave and daring in the extreme. He had a large family of daughters; the youngest is the wife of J. Robert Eatherton, who has been a conspicuous and highly enterprising citizen, and owns the Capt. Tyler farm.
Lawrence Long came to Missouri from Virginia along with Samuel Conway about 1796. He settled on a Spanish grant of one thousand arpens, including the site of Chesterfield. His descendants are mostly in Bonhomme township. His children were Lawrence (married Sarah Post), James (married Leah Fitzwater), Alton (married Sarah Caulk).
James and Leah Long were main supporters of Chesterfield Church.
Chesterfield is on the very edge of the township, and is as much in Bonhomme as in Meramec. It contains about a dozen dwellings, church, and school, and has a long and interesting history. It has lately obtained a post-office at Wetzell's store, with Henry Wetzell as postmaster. C. Andrae is an old settler.
The town was laid off by Col. Justus Post in 1817. Elihu H. Shepard says of him, "He was one of the best informed and wealthiest citizens of the Territory, had been educated at West Point, was a profound, practical mathematician, and had served with credit in the United States army during the war of 1812. He was possessed of an estate of one hundred thousand dollars, mostly in cash, purchased large tracts of land, built a country residence and a mill in Bonhomme (Meramec) township, made other improvements, and gave embellishment to the country and life to business around him....He became director in the Missouri Bank, and became involved,...left Missouri and settled in America, Ill., and died, having disposed of his large estate in St. Louis County for a trifle when he left, which, if held to his death, would have left his two sons millionaires." The bricks for
the mansion of Col. Post were made by Letcher & Bobb, of St. Louis, in 1822. Many well-known names cluster there, Albert Worthington, Dr. Kincaid, Dr. James Hall, etc.
The Darby family came from North Carolina in 1830, and bought land in the Bell & Mackay grant. They sold to William Boxley about 1837. Hon. John F. Darby was a member of this family.
Bonhomme Post-Office, with its fine homesteads and closely-settled, fertile land, is an attractive spot. The store and post-office are kept by Charles Boiselier. The daily mail-stage on the Olive route makes this its terminal point. It is quite near Howell's Perry, an important crossing to St. Charles County, and is in an affluent neighborhood. Charles Boiselier owns the store, and is postmaster. His father and uncle removed from France to Germany from political causes about 1839; emigrated to Missouri and bought land.
Thomas Boyer came from Fulda in 1836. He found a few German families already here. C. Angelrodt and four others had settled a short distance above, and were known as the "Bremen Company," whose widely-extended influence in Europe attracted considerable emigration. Mr. Angelrodt has long been known as senior member of the firm of Angelrodt & Barth, consular agents, St. Louis. He bought a large tract of land in the Mackay survey at sheriff's sale for taxes, that had been owned by a Dr. Eden, non-resident. Mr. Angelrodt sub-divided and sold it.
Adam Bates came here about 1823. He had a large family, a portion of them in St. Charles County. Henry lives on the homestead, and was justice of the peace. Adam Wardenberg came about 1833. He bought some of the Eden land, and settled on survey 414. S. Dachreden lives on the old Worthington place, and came here about 1834, as did the Krennings, Krums, and Adolph Kehr, of Kehr's Mill. Rapphoff, Ficke, and E. Becker came about 1837. John Howell, of Howell's Island, is son of Thomas Howell, born in 1783, and settled on the land known as the Governor Bates farm. He sold to Governor Bates, and removed to St. Charles County. John married a daughter of Martin McCourtenay, and had a large family, Rudolphus, Orlando, Martin, Martha (Mrs. T. M. Wright), Minerva, and Huldah. His first wife died, and he married a Miss Iden. Martin McCourtenay, nephew of Alexander McCourtenay, came from Pittsburgh in 1837. He had two sons, who both left, and two daughters, Mrs. J. Howell, noted above, and Mrs. Mary Link, who resides in the vicinity and has a large family, mostly grown up.
St. Andrew's was laid off by John Henry early in the century, but never gained much note. It is now about eight hundred yards from the bank of the Missouri River, engulfed in the bed of that destructive stream, which is now destroying the richest lands of the vicinity.
The settlement of the township presents three distinct waves. A few adventurous spirits, mostly Kentuckians and French, explored the land and obtained grants previous to 1800. Another influx from Kentucky occurred from 1800 to 1820. Then came a lull incident to the settlement of the State government, which continued until 1830. Between 1830 and 1840 came the great wave of wealth from Virginia, supplemented by, but not commingling with, the great German emigration of that period.
The first German settler known of in the township was Worth, who came about 1818 and settled on sections 5 and 6, 44, 3 east, on the Beckemeyer place, now owned by Frederick Ossenfort. He served in the great European war with Napoleon, and came to the United States at its close.
The first colored man that owned land in the township was Jesse Hubbard. He belonged to Nancy Bacon, then Mrs. Robert Lewis, and went with Mr. Lewis to California in 1849-54. They returned with fifteen thousand dollars, which was divided between them. The share of Jesse was then divided by his mistress, who gave him his freedom along with his share, and he bought land from James Orr and settled on it.
The "Old Church by the Lake" was a log building at its east end, which for many years sheltered a throng of rough but earnest worshipers. It was built by the Baptists, but its doors were open to ministers of every denomination. Its cemetery alone remains.
Chesterfield Church took its place, and has already been noticed.
Old Baptist Antioch Church is situated on the old King's Highway, in section 15, 45, 3 east. It was erected mainly by the Coleman and Tyler families. It was dedicated May 29, 1841, and constituted a Baptist Church by Noah Flood and John H. Thompson. John Wright was ordained deacon, B. F. Lipscomb clerk, and Abner Bly treasurer. As many as thirty-three persons were baptized by immersion at one time. The Rev. J. M. Peck, of St. Louis, frequently preached here.
New Antioch Church was dedicated on Dec. 25, 1860, by William Crowell, of St. Louis, assisted by Mr. Hickman, and the old church building was given up for the use of the colored members. In 1872, Robert G. Coleman, John Hockersmith, and A. J. Cumming were ordained deacons. William H. Coleman
man was appointed clerk in 1846, and still fills the same office. A Sunday-school meets in the church, and a cemetery is attached.
Rock Bethel was built on Wild Horse Creek by the Methodists, at a cost of two thousand dollars. It was dedicated in 1859 by Rev. Dr. Finney, assisted by Wesley Browning, the preacher in charge. A short time after opening it was discovered that it was placed on the wrong survey, and the owner, Mr. Solf, refusing to sell the land, the building was lost.
Log Bethel, or little Bethel, was built on section 4, 44, 3 east, for the Sunday-school and as a temporary preaching-place till a better could be built, but was never formally dedicated.
New Bethel Methodist Church was erected on the State road, section 3, 44, 3 east, and is a fine frame building, with rock basement for Sunday-school purposes. It cost four thousand seven hundred dollars, and was dedicated by Rev. Dr. McAnally, assisted by Wesley Browning and J. S. Frazier, on April 8, 1875. It has a membership of one hundred and fifty and a flourishing Sunday-school.
Bethel Cemetery is a beautiful spot, regularly laid out and tastefully ornamented. The first burial was that of William Atwell, who was born June 16, 1854, and was killed by striking against the roof of Laelede bridge on the night of Aug. 29, 1873.
Eureka and Lewis Chapel have been noticed in their respective locations; the Protectorate Chapel has also been referred to. A cemetery has been laid out in connection with the institution; the McCullough burial-ground has been given up, and most of the bodies have been removed to Bethel or the Protectorate Cemeteries. The Inks Cemetery is situated at Augustus Wengler's, and is a public burying-place. The McClure Cemetery is located on Judge Allen's farm, and contains the dust of many pioneers.
Meramec Preaching Circuit was part of Manchester previous to 1859. In 1859 it was separated and called Allenton Circuit, with Wesley Browning, preacher, who was succeeded by Rev. Jacob Ditzeler. Rev. J. N. W. Springer was preacher in 1860-61. It was without a preacher in 1862-63, but occasional services were held by the Revs. W. Alexander and Atkinson, of Manchester. In 1864, Rev. Mr. Compton took charge, and was succeeded by Rev. J. E. Godbey. In 1866 the circuit was united with Union, with the Rev. William M. Williams, preacher. In 1868 the name was changed to Meramec Circuit and Allenton dropped. The Union and Meramec Circuits, J. E. Godbey, C. P., and L. W. Powell, assistant, were composed of Union, Franklin, Eureka, Lewis Chapel, and Little Bethel. In 1872 the Franklin County places were separated and Fenton added. In 1875 Fenton was dropped, and Eureka and Lewis Chapel was united in Meramec Circuit.
The following is a list of Meramec Circuit preachers: Wesley Browning, 1859; Jacob Ditzeler, 1859-60; J. W. N. Springer, 1860-61; Compton, 1864; W. M. Williams, 1866; J. E. Godbey, 1865-68; L. W. Powell, 1868; H. C. Watts, 1870; J. H. St. Clair, 1872; R. F. Chew, 1873; L. W. Powell, 1873; Abram Slater, 1874; I. R. Hicks, 1875-79; J. W. Johnston, 1879-81; J. W. Robertson, 1881-82.
Among the early ministers who labored in this field may be mentioned
Revs. John Clark, Methodist (afterwards Baptist); Lorenzo Dow, Methodist; J. M. Peck, Baptist, St. Louis; Robert G. Coleman, Baptist; Jacob Hudspeth, Francis Brownley, and John R. Brown, Cumberland Presbyterians; Lemmon and Hardeman, Baptists; Garvin, Presbyterian; Jesse Green, T. A. Morris, R. A. Bennett, and Robert A. Young, Methodists.
Societies, Orders, etc. Meramec Horticultural Society, established in 1859, held monthly meetings at the houses of the members and annual exhibitions at different points. It was supplanted by the Patrons of Husbandry. Meramae Grange, No. 1, the first in the State, was organized by O. H. Kelley, Washington, D. C., August, 1870, and met near Glencoe. Pacific Grange meets near Eureka; Bonhomme Grange meets in the hall at Wild Horse; Arville Grange near Pond. The last two are dormant.
A lodge of Good Templars was organized at Antioch in 1856, and another was organized at Glencoe, 1857. Meramec Lodge, 146, meets at Bethel and has forty-four members. Lone Star Lodge meets at Eureka and has twenty-five members. Masonic Lodge meets at Eureka. Harigari (German) meets at Wetzell's Store, near Chesterfield.
Following is a list of ex-justices, etc., resident in the township:
Richard Caulk, as Spanish officer; William Harding; Post, 1820; Henry McCullough, 1820-50; J. P. Lawler, 1850; George C. Frazier, 1837; Robert Lewis, 1849; Hugh Miller, Philip Tippett, Perigrine Tippett, Benjamin G. Brown, T. R. Allen, Robert Orr, W. S. Holloway, James Sappington, John W. Doss, Maj. Beale, Herman Steines, Thomas Thomas, Henry Dreinhofer, Henry Bates, Fred. Storren, John Quirk, George Hoenecker, William Muir.
ASSESSORS. Thomas Caulk, Benjamin G. Brown, 1844-48; William S. Holloway, R. A. Lewis, Herman Steines, Thomas Thomas, T. R. Allen, Joel R. Frazier, Green B. Baxter.
LEGISLATORS. Thomas Caulk, Capt. William Tyler, Rufus A. Lewis, William Harris.
CONTABLES. Albert Worthington, Green Baxter, Wash. Bacon, D. S. Warfield, William Stosberg.
COUNTY OFFICERS, 1883. Robert C. Allen, State Legislature; Frank Rewwe, county assessor; William C. Wengler, deputy county clerk; Justices of the Peace, F. W. Steines, Herman Heinze; Public Notaries, Thomas Thomas, D. C. Taylor; Constable, Samuel G. Trower; Post-offices and Postmasters, Allenton, Frederick Wengler; Bonhomme, Charles Boiselier; Eureka, Thomas Thomas; Fox Creek, Frederick Hencken; Gumbo, Henry Wetzell; Glencoe, wanting; Melrose, Louis Wackher; Orrville, Gustave Hoppenberg; Pond, Mrs. Eliza Hillebrand.
Among the early physicians of the township were
Drs. Peter Kincaid, Edward Zoller, Eberwine, Keuckelhahn, Toney, James Hall, Wilson, Swartz, A. W. McPherson, Dunn, L. D. Morse, Wyatt, Galny, Alexander, S. R. Woods.
Physicians, 1883. Dr. J. B. H. Beale, born West Virginia, 1819; graduated Cincinnati College, Ohio, 1846; located in Eureka, 1854.
Gustave Stricker, born Oberkirch, Baden; graduated Heidelberg College in 1852; located near Fox Creek in 1856.
Robert G. Coleman, born St. Louis County, 1840; graduated Cincinnati College, Ohio, 1867; located near Orrville in 1867.
Samuel Rush Loing, born Petersburg, Va., 1852; graduated Louisville, Ky., College in 1874; located on Wild Horse road in 1876.
Lee Earnest Munroe, born St. Louis County, 1860; graduated Pope's College, St. Louis, in 1880; located at Glencoe in 1881.
In the township there are sixteen district schools, "Druhes School," on State road, section 6, 44, 4 east, Catholic; Protectorate School, near Glencoe, Catholic.
Meramec township had in 1850 a population of 1921; in 1860, 2468; 1870, 3436; 1880, 7923.
Scharf, J. Thomas. History of Saint Louis City and County, From the Earliest Periods to the Present Day: Including Biographical Sketches of Representative Men. In Two Volumes, Illustrated. Volume II . Philadelphia: Louis H. Everts & Co., 1883. [format: book], [genre: biography; history; proceedings]. Permission: Northern Illinois University
Persistent link to this document: http://lincoln.lib.niu.edu/file.php?file=scharf2.html