appearing in this article:
Berry, Holliday, Gwynn, Allen,
Smelser, Blakey, Farrell, Weatherford, Porter,
Colborn, Guthrie, Sidener, Deaver, Alexander,
Blanton, Ragland, Blakey, Gregory, Flanders,
Janes, Meier, Peck, Caldwell, Rogers, Curry,
Stephenson, Miller, McBride, Holden, Gentry,
Cave, Acuff, McGee, Smith, McKamey, Rogers,
Simpson, Davis, Fox, Runkle, Mappin, Mitts,
Hubbard, Cave, Donaldson, Sproul, McKamey,
Stephens, Whittenburg, Saling, Wilkerson,
Burton, Coppedge, Bryan, Abernathy, Stone,
Belcher, Fox, Wilcoxson, Bozarth, Glascock,
Greening, Kirttance, Mappin, Scobee, Eads,
McGee, Thompson, Fike, Noel, Stamper, Curry,
Greening, Yates, Barr, Rice, Adams,
East, Holden, Dickson, Mothershead, Hagan,
Kelley, Caves, Stout, Williams, Crow, Curry,
Abernathy, Pavey, Maxey, Glenn, Greening,
Hendren, Thomas, Quales, Moberly, George,
Thompson, Heard, Acuff, Williams,
West, Hickman, Meredith, Fields,
Fisher, Heckart, Jones, Davis, Bassett,
Murphy, Buerk, Rodes, Parsons, White, Hill,
Allen, Dry, Dewey, Power, Gordon, Brooks,
Pfaff, Jones, Beagle, Crigler, Basy, Holbrook,
Osborn, Wright, Spalding, Speed, Twain,
Quarles, Lampton, McKamey, Bledsoe, Bounds,
Ragsdale, Heizer, Carrico, McLeod, Bates,
Kerr, Brashears, Bybee, Drake, Wilkerson,
Bassett, Hunter, Ownby, Dulaney, Blakey,
Alexander, Ragland, Bryan, Dawson, Burgess,
Towles, Conyers, Moss, Crutcher, Penn,
Delaney, Sparks, Hammonds, Fields, Forman,
Caldwell, Foreman, Caldwell, Glascock,
Johnson, Hibler, McCann,
Paris Negro Recalls Slave Days
George Berry, aged 85 years, is one of the few
Monroe county Negroes who date back to slave
recalled Friday that as a 10-year old he
His father and mother were sold the
same day, the father bringing $700 and the
Until that time they had been the
property of John Holliday.
He sold them to his brother, Thomas
Holliday, who in turn sold them to Robert
Gwynn who continued to own them until they
were set free.
master, George recalls, was required to inform
his slaves that they were free.
Mr. Gwynn did this, he states, after he
and his father had been given their daily
father’s job that day was to cut backlogs.
George’s task was to cut wood for the
After they had worked about two hours
Mr. Gwynn came out and broke the news to them.
They quit work right.
Mr. Gwynn inquired what they expected
to do. They
had no idea.
He offered the family a living and $100
in money to work for him a year.
After some dickering, says Uncle
George, his father agreed to stay on those
terms provided Matilda, his wife, was never
The following year George was given
boots, clothes, a living and $50 for his work.
Then he moved to Paris and has been
He is a member of the Masonic Lodge, a
devout Baptist and a citizen whose standing is
very high with the best people in the
His wife, Talitha, is 8 years his
is a splendid woman and is highly respected.
thing which strikes Uncle George as a bad sign
of these modern times is the lightness with
which both whites and blacks look upon their
First Lighting System
Allen, the tinner, recalls the first street
lights in Paris.
They were 12 in number.
Coal oil was used.
Old files of the Appeal tell of the
city airs Paris took on when these street
lamps, which looked a good deal like lightning
bugs in a fog, were first put up.
Allen, Jo’s oldest brother, had the contract
for operating the system.
Every evening at the approach of
darkness Mike and Jo sallied forth to light
the 12 lamps.
This they accomplished by setting a
small ladder against the lamppost and mounting
to where a match could be applied to the wick.
Every morning they made the rounds
again, this time to turn the lights out and
replenish the oil.
From time to time, as revenues would
permit, the number of lamps was increased
until about three dozen were in use.
This method of illuminating the streets
continued until electric lights were installed
a quarter of a century ago.
Allen family traces back to Kentucky through
Charles Allen, the father of the late James S.
Allen, who came to Monroe county 100 years ago
last month, entering land near Middle Grove
from the Government.
This farm was operated by James S.
Allen until his death.
It then passed to Mrs. Allen.
At her death it was deeded to the sons
who now own it.
The original house was built of logs.
These logs are in the present building,
though covered with weatherboarding.
The Allen family has many articles 100
years or more old, including a cherry
sideboard. They also have a deed that was
signed by Andrew Jackson.
World War Victim
first World War victim from Monroe county was
J.T. Smelser, a Stoutsville boy.
Jim went to Canada before the war broke
out and entered some land after England and
Canada went to grips with Germany.
Smelser enlisted to the Canadian arm.
He was sent to England for training and
hurried across to the firing line in France,
where he fell a victim to the first German gas
attack, and to shell shock.
He was sent back to a hospital in
Toronto to recuperate.
All this happened before the U.S.
entered into the war.
First Soldier Letter
first letter from a Monroe county boy in an
army camp was received by the Appeal from
Glendi Blakey, September 11, 1917.
It was written from Camp Funston and
proved a high source of comfort to the
families of other boys who were soon to go.
Blakey gave the daily routine of the
embryo soldier, complimented the meals and
closed as follows:
am more than pleased with the camp and think
that after you all get here and once get into
line with things you will like it as well as I
believe those who asked for exemption will be
sorry in the long run.
Getting Married Had Its Drawbacks
married in Monroe county was not such an easy
matter about the time the Civil War came to a
fact, there was not a preacher in Monroe
county who could legally tie a knot during
A case in point was the marriage of
M. Farrell and Susan Virginia Weatherford,
October 4, 1865.
ceremony was performed by a combination
preacher and justice of the peace at Old
Milton, in Randolph county, there being no
minister in Monroe county who could legally
officiate at a wedding on account of the test
oath required by the Federal authorities and
to which they refused to subscribe.
The Farrell-Weatherford ceremony was
said by the Old Milton minister in his
capacity as a justice of the peace, and the
contracting parties were assured that if they
would do their part it would hold until the
end of time.
The young people journey to their
wedding in the only buggy that was owned in
It was the property of Dr. Porter, who
insisted on its use when he learned the bride
and groom were planning to make the trip on
They contracting parties were 18 years
groom was just back from the South where he
had fought in the Confederate army until his
regiment was surrendered in Louisiana.
Mr. Farrell recalls that prices were
about as high at that time as they are now.
It required every dollar he possessed
to pay for a cherry dining table about the
size of a latter-day card table.
Farmers received 73 cents a pound for
Everything was high except farm lands.
and Mrs. Farrell came to Paris in 1887.
Mr. Farrell was elected cashier of the
Paris Savings Bank at the time and a little
later was elected treasurer of Monroe county.
He was president of the Savings Bank
until his death, having been continuously with
the institution for 44 years and having been a
potent factor in bringing it to its present
high position among Missouri banks.
Farrell died three years ago.
Mrs. Farrell still presides over the
old home place in Paris and still looks like
the accompanying picture, which was taken 10
years or more ago.
Nurse To Lose Life
Christine Colborn, daughter of Rev. R.T.
Colborn of Paris, was the only woman from
Monroe County to lose her life in the service
of her country during the World War.
She died at Ft. Riley, Kansas,
November, 1918, while serving as a Red Cross
Second Victim of The World War
Guthrie, who lived near Strother, was Monroe
county’s second World War victim.
He died of spinal meningitis at Camp
Funston in 1917 and was buried at Long Branch.
War Letter Written in Prison
War reminiscens always recall to Monroe county
people the tragic death of one of their fellow
citizens, Captain Thomas A. Sidener, formerly
of Clay township, in what will always be known
as the “Palmyra Massacre”.
Out of revenge for the disappearance of
a Union officer, which was laid to Confederate
sympathizers, the federal commandant at
Palmyra, Gen. John McNeil, ordered that ten
Confederate soldiers be executed with (out)
the formality of a trial.
Captain Sidnener was one of the ten.
When the hour of execution arrived ten
coffins were hauled out into a vacant lot.
Each of the condemned men was assigned
to one of them and ordered to sit upon it
while the firing squad assembled, remaining in
that position until their lives were snuffed
out by musket balls.
letter written by Captain Sidnener the night
before his death and a photograph the captain
had made a few weeks before his capture, are
now in the Appeal office.
They are the property of Charley Curry,
near Granville, a kinsman of the captain.
The letter was as follows:
Brothers and Sisters and Friends:--I seat
myself for the last time towrite you a few
am in good health, but alas, tomorrow is the
day set apart for me to be carried to another
I hope I will be received in heaven where
justice is done.
I have not had a trial and they won’t
give me any chance for my life.
Oh, I hope that God will forgive the
unmerciful creatures that will commit the
To take innocent men and shoot them for
crimes they have never done.
We are to be shot for one man that J.C.
Porter took away from here, a man that I never
say in the life.
Oh, is this justice?
God in Heaven knows that it is not
can it be helped?
No mortal hand can do anything by
pleading, no one but God can do anything for
and Sisters try to be good in the future, try
to lead a pious and religious life.
Oh, do not delay long, you know not
when you may be called away, liked myself.
Oh, that I could have the few years to
live over again, I would lead a different
alas, the moment is drawing near for me to
leave you all, to meet again, only in Heaven
where all religious people meet, never to part
oh, that I could get to see you once more, but
as it is impossible for us to meet again on
earth, I hope we will met in Heaven.
Sister take care of yourself and little
boy, and kiss him for me, and tell friends
goodbye for your brother, who will be no more
on this earth in a few hours.
Oh, my mind is so frustrated that I
cannot write, can’t collect hardly a
sentence, or spell word correctly.
But read it the best you can and think
it is from your brother.
Ellen I want you to have this valise I
have with me, and keep it in remembrance of
Lena, George, goodbye, goodbye, forever on
Jacob is with me.
I will tell him goodbye myself.
Take good care of yourselves, and try
to get along the best you can through this
hard, troublesome world.
Tell Uncle Thornton’s family goodbye,
and all inquiring friends.
I have some little money with me,
divide it to suit yourselves; I find I won’t
have any use for it anymore.
Boys, you tell them I want you to pay
my debts if you can, I don’t want any
blemishes on my character after I am gone.
Oh, little did I think that I would
have caught and shot.
If I had they never would have kept me
I have had several chances to get away
from them, but I thought they would do
justice, and consequently I stayed, and now
see what they are going to do with me.
Oh, if I had only known they were going
to shoot me, I would have left them several
18, 1862—Goodbye, this morning, to you all;
brothers, sisters, relatives and friends.
I have to tell you all goodbye for the
I am to be shot at 10 o’clock this
The Federals won’t let Jacob come to
see me. I
got to shake hands with him this morning.
I do not know that I will get to see
him anymore, but if I do not, tell him goodbye
for me. I
can only say farewell forever on this earth,
but have brighter prospects for the future.
Have trust in God, and you will reap
His rewards in Heaven.
Forever farewell, farewell.
World War Enlistments
first batch of enlistments in Monroe county
after war on Germany was declared was composed
of: J.E. Deaver, Paul Alexander, Edgar P.
Blanton, Reginald Ragland, Glenn Blakey,
Winfred Gregory, Jerome Flanders, Porter Janes,
Russel Meier, and Kirt Peck.
They enlisted May 14th, 1917
for the training camp at Ft. Leavenworth.
from the County Court Record Book of 100 Years
court was held at the home of Green V.
Caldwell, Saturday February 26, 1831.
Rogers, John Curry and William P. Stephenson
held commissions for the Governor, John
Miller, as first justices of the court, for
W. McBride was appointed a clerk of the first
court, with bond signed by Edward M. Holden,
David Gentry, Richard Cave and Christopher C.
McGee was appointed assessor for 1831, with
James H. Smith and John McKamey as his
May, 1831, Andrew Rogers, Robert Simpson and
Reese Davis were appointed by the governor as
permanent justices of the court of a four year
Simpson was first president of this court.
H. Smith was appointed collector for 1831,
with James C. Fox, William Runkle and James
Mappin as securities.
elections were ordered held at the home of
John Mitts in Jefferson, with A.E. Hubbard,
Richard Cave and Robert Donaldson as judges;
at the place of holding court in Jackson, with
James Mappin, Joseph Sproul and John McKamey
as judges; at home of Reese Davis in Union,
with Joseph Stephens, Jacob Whittenburg and
George Saling as judges.
constables appointed were: Jefferson township,
Milton Wilkerson; Union, Elliot Burton;
Jackson, Isaac Coppedge.
1831, only ten merchants licenses were issued
in the entire county.
Paid $1.75 a Day
S. McGee, assessor, was paid the magnificent
sum of $1.75 per day for 20 days for assessing
the county, a total assessors salary of
S. McGee was appointed first surveyor, under
$2,000 bond, signed by John McKamey, Ezexiel
Bryan and Samuel H. Smith.
R. Abernathy was appointed commissioner of
township school lands, under $15,000 bond,
signed by Samuel H. Smith, David E. Stone,
Esham Belcher, John M. Burton, Charles Burton,
James Mappin, and John Burton.
was Town Commissioner
C. Fox was appointed town commissioner of
Paris, with bond signed by William Wilcoxson,
Elias Bozarth, James S. McGee, Ephrain Smith,
and John S. McGee.
Select County Seat
Glascock, one of the commissioners appointed
to select a county seat, was paid $31.50 for
overseers appointed at the August 1831 term
Greening Abram Kirttance, Matthew Mappin,
Stephen Scobee, Charles Eads, James S. McGee,
Alexander Thompson, Hasten Fike, Garnet Noel,
James Noel, Lasken Stamper.
1831, James Mappin, Paul Harrison, John Curry,
Silias Bozarth and Hasten Fike laid out the
Paris-Columbia road; James Mappin, Joseph
Sproul, James McGee and Matthew Mappin, the
Paris-New London road; Isham Belcher, John
Burton, David East, James C. Fox and John M.
Burton, the Paris-Fayette road; Robert
Greening, Hiram Thompson, John Yates and
Alexander, the Paris-Florida road.
Barr furnished the first 12 record books,
bound in leather, for the clerks office for
Rice was the first guardian appointed in the
was guardian for Lowery Adams, infant orphan
of William Adams.
W. McBride, clerk, was allowed $5 for paper,
ink, powder and quills used in his office.
East was appointed assessor at the February
term, 1832, with $400 bond.
Runkle was appointed collector, with a bond of
February 1832, license to operate a ferry boat
across Middle Fork of Salt River at Paris was
issued to Edward M. Holden.
the November term, 1832, James Dickson and
Lucy Mothershead were appointed joint
administrators of the estate of Benjamin
This is the first record of appointment
of administrators of an estate.
for Jail Work
Hagan was paid $175 for construction work on
the first county jail in November, 1832.
Paris Tavern License
Kelley was issued the first license on record
for keeping a tavern and public house of
entertainment in Paris, in February, 1833.
February, 1832, the court ordered James
Dickson and Lucy Mothershead, administrators
of the Benjamin Mothershead estate, to sell a
Negro woman names Jemina, aged about forty,
and a girl slave named Eliza for “the best
price” that can be obtained for said slaves.
P. Stout enters into the record in May 1833,
when he appeared before the court and
petitioned for a road leading from the
northwest corner of the county to Richard
Caves mill on North Fork, somewhere near where
Elliotsville bridge now stands, it is thought.
Money From Jefferson
officers went to Jefferson City for the money
due to the county, instead of getting it by
mail as at present.
An entry on June 22, 1833 allows
Phillip Williams $16.25 for such a trip, and
acknowledges receipt of $569.65 state tax from
March 17th, 1834, $500 was
appropriated for building a bridge across
Middle Fork at Paris.
It was to be located between the town
spring branch, the branch which now runs into
Middle Fork near the colored schoolhouse, and
the county jail, which then stood near the
Crow, John H. Curry and James R. Abernathy
were to superintend the building of the
was to be 120 feet from abutment to abutment
and six feet above the rive bank on the north
W. Pavey drew the plans.
courts, as well as those of the present day,
had their right-of-way troubles.
In March, 1835, the court appointed
twelve disinterested commissioners to view a
road which was proposed through the Boaz Maxey
farm, and to which Mr. Maxey had objected.
The commission later allowed him $2.50
It Cost To Cross By Ferry
ferry license was grated at the February term
1836, to Spottswood Williams, to operate a
boat across North Fork of Salt River at the
Glenn & Bryan millsite.
Rates were to range from 3 cents for
sheep, hog or goat, 11 ¼ center for foot
passengers, to $1 for a four wheeled wagon
with six horses, mules or oxen.
At the May term, a ferry license was
issued to Sam Greening for operating a boat
across North Fork near his home.
a special session of the court, February,
1837, the town of Florida, upon petition by
two thirds of her citizens, was incorporated,
and granted all powers held by an incorporated
W. Hendren, Henry Thomas, John Quales, G.W.
Moberly and Robert George were appointed the
first town trustees.
Florida had been settled for several
years, but had existed as an unincorporated
Paris Town Trustees
of the town of Paris was affected by the
Monroe County Court at the August term 1837.
First trustees of the town were
Alexander Thompson, John Heard, Christopher C.
Acuff, John Williams and John W. West.
They were to continue as trustees until
others could be duly chosen and qualified
according to law.
To Hickman Ferry
the November term, 1837, a ferry license was
granted to Hugh A. Hickman to operate a ferry
across South Fork near Hickman’s Mill, just
south of Florida.
for North Fork Bridge
May, 1838, $500 was appropriated “out of the
road and canal fund”, for the construction
of a bridge across the North Fork of Salt
River, at or near Hugh Meredith’s Mill.
The remainder of the expense of the
bridge was to be met by popular subscription.
Sent Many To Alaska For Gold
thirty Monroe County citizens were lured to
faraway Alaska during the gold excitement in
March 1 of that year, D.J. Fields, James L.
Heckart, Wm. Jones and John Thompson started
on the long trip, as an advance guard for the
Missouri-Alaska Gold Company that had been
organized at Paris.
the 19th of the following month the
other 21 members of the party left Paris in a
special Pullman car.
B. Davis, T.G. Bassett, Tom J. Murphy, Chris
Buerk, Marcus Rodes, John Parson, Henry White,
Abe Hill, Dr. Wm. W. Allen, C.L. Dry, Dr. T.J.
Dewey, Ed Power, J. R. Gordon, C.W. Brooks,
J.M. Pfaff, J.A. Jones, M. Beagle, Les Crigler,
D.C. Basy, Rube Holbrook, R.O. Osborn.
Wright, of Santa Fe, and John Bryan, a Paris
colored man, also made the long trip.
first party made its way to Dawson City after
incredible hardships and met with nothing but
The main party was delayed many months
at Seattle waiting for a steamboat they were
having built for navigating the Yukon River in
Alaska and dredging gold from its bed.
They finally chartered an old sailing
ship, reaching an Alaskan port after 30
terrible days on the Pacific.
They finally made their way far above
the Arctic circle and sunk many shafts 100
feet through the frozen soil to bedrock.
No gold was found.
of Early Days
& Blakey, Paris undertakers and furniture
dealers who are doing business on the same lot
on which the business was started by W.E.
Spalding in 1854, 77 years ago, have some very
interesting relics of pioneer days in the
Stored in their basement are several
sizes of “Roach back” coffins, handmade in
the factory of the early owners of the
business, and in many instances made of solid
coffins are wide at the head and taper to a
narrow end at the feet.
They were made to measure and fitted
with handles selected by the family of the
Hundreds of these coffins made in
Paris, were used in burying the honored dead
of pioneer times.
In the same collection are specimens of
pauper coffins that were used in the early
the floor of the basement of the present
business room are stains made there by
painters staining coffins in the early days.
Park of the present building was that
originally built by W.E. Spalding, founder of
The original glass for the front
windows has been replaced by plate glass, and
may now be seen in the windows of the American
Shoe Shop, where it was installed after being
taken out of the Spalding building.
These small double strength window
glasses were the largest in Paris when first
installed in the original building.
Plate glass was unknown.
Speed, senior member of the present firm,
recalls that he spent many days of his boyhood
working in the basement of his uncle’s
store, putting together and staining furniture
and home-made coffins.
& Blakey have a hand-written slip of paper
pasted on the inside of a filing cabinet in
their store which shows the prices paid for
assembling furniture that had been made in the
old furniture factory owned by the firm.
paid for the assembling of some of the
articles was as follows:
round lid walnut coffin, 75¢ to $1.25
depending upon size; flat lid pine coffins, 50¢
to 75¢; octagon coffins, $1 and $2; quarter
marble bureau, $6.30; wood top bureau, $5.10;
plain wood top bureau, $4.50; portable
wardrobe $7.50; walnut cupboards and safes
$2.40; linen safes, $1.80 and $2.10; extension
tables, $2.25 to $4.40; French bedsteads with
panel, $2.00; large round corner bedstead;
$2.10 trundle beds 75¢; cradles 75¢.
workmen assembling them drew the magnificent
salary of $60 a month, $15 per week, the
largest salary in town, if he worked steadily
a Florida Cemetery
a cemetery at Florida, Monroe county, are
found the graves of two of Mark Twain’s
sisters, John Quarles and his wife Martha.
A marble mausoleum shelters the remains
of Martha Quarles, who was born in Adain
county, Kentucky, March 22, 1807, and died at
Florida, Missouri, July 23, 1850, twenty-five
years and seven months previous to the date
that records the death of her husband.
The following tribute is graven on the
marble slab that covers the tomb:
are gone from us Martha, but death is defied
rob me of hope since the Savior has died
looking to Him, who salvation has given,
meet thee, dear Martha,
meet thee in Heaven”
an abandoned cemetery, now a part of the
public school grounds, is the grave of
It is unmarked except by native rocks
which cover the grave and small boulders at
the head and foot of his last resting place.
History Of Some Pioneer Families
McKamey family were Kentucky pioneers, going
there from Pennsylvania soon after the
John McKamey came to Missouri in 1828
locating about 5 miles southeast of Paris.
His son, David McKamey was one of the
largest land owners and stockmen in Monroe
one sale back in the ‘80s he sold 80 steers
that averaged 2,041 pounds a piece.
Bledsoe family in Monroe county is descended
from Joseph M. Bledsoe, a native of Virginia.
He came to Monroe county in 1852,
beginning as a renter but later becoming the
owner of a 200-acre farm.
He was the father of 10 children.
Bounds families are descended from Thos. J.
and Henrietta D. Bounds, who came to Monroe
county in 1838, settling 8 miles west of
Ragsdale, one of the founders of the Paris
National Bank, came from Kentucky to the Old
Clinton vicinity in Monroe county in 1826.
He became a Paris druggist in 1847 and
later turned to farming.
He is buried in the Old Cemetery on
North Main street.
Heizer family of South Fork dates back to
Joseph Heizer, who came from Virginia in 1836.
Carrico came to Monroe county in 1836 and
settled near Indian Creek, where he entered
600 acres of land.
His son Benedict, starting with 80
acres of land, acquired during his life time
700 acres, and a large amount of money raising
cattle and mules.
Some of his descendents are now living
near Indian Creek.
Patrick H. McLeod, born in Ireland in 1814,
came to America in 1834 and to Monroe county
in 1852, locating on Indian Creek.
He taught the first school in Monroe
Township, held the office of Justice of the
Peace more than 20 years, was a member of the
29th General Assembly wand was a
farmer and stock raiser of note.
He reared a family of seven children.
Bates family in Monroe county is descended
from Washington Bates and Nancy Kerr, both
natives of Virginia.
Mr. Bates served in the Southern cause
and was in the battle of Blue Mill and
He followed the stock raising and
shipping business in South Fork township for
M. Brashears was one of fifteen sons of
Solomon and Josephine Brashears, who, with his
parents, came from South Carolina to Missouri,
settling in Ralls county in 1831.
He later located near Santa Fe, Monroe
county, where he followed the business of
farming and blacksmithing, which trade he
learned as a youth.
He reared a family of eleven children,
several of whom now live in South Fork
ancestors of the Bybee family settled a mile
and a half from Santa Fe so early that the
nearest trading post was Hannibal.
The principal crops raised then were
hemp and corn.
S. Drake, M.D., born in Kentucky, reared in
Monroe county, was the leading physician in
the southeast part of the county for many
father, Samuel Drake, served this district in
the State Senate several years.
A prominent Whig he defeated the
Democratic candidate from Palmyra by a large
majority, receiving every vote except two in
South Fork township.
Later he was elected representative of
Monroe county to the Legislature.
Dr. John S. Drake served in the
Confederacy under Col. Porter.
He was a prisoner at Alton some months,
then banished from Missouri until the close of
Graduated from Miami Medical College,
Cincinnati, 1871, he returned to Santa Fe and
became one of the county’s best loved
Wilkerson family came to Missouri from
Kentucky in 1826, settling in Boone county.
They came to Monroe county about 1833,
following the dry goods and grocery business
at Florida and Santa Fe, together with
The grandfather of the present members
of the family started a nursery on his farm
near Santa Fe while looking after his store
and serving as postmaster.
James Bassett, graduate of Paris Academy and
of the University of Missouri, was one of the
pioneer farmers of Union township, coming to
Middle Grove neighborhood.
He was one of the early teachers in
Union township, teaching and farming
He married Miss Mary E. Hunt, a native
of Monroe County.
Ownby came to Missouri from Kentucky in 1827,
being then 17 years of age.
He settled near Middle Grove and by
1835 had acquired a farm home and married Miss
Sarah Dulaney whose parents were early
settlers from Kentucky.
They reared a family of eight children.
Mr. Ownby owned one of the best farms
in the county, served as constable for his
township 16 years and two terms as sheriff of
Monroe county, elected first in 1866.
D. Blakey, early merchant-farmer of Paris,
came to Monroe county from Virginia in 1844,
locating at Clinton and engaging in
He moved to Paris, continuing in
business until 1854.
During the time he bought 700 acres of
land near Granville to which he moved and
developed a fine stock farm.
He served his county as assessor in
1856 and as a member of the Legislature in
Alexanders of Paris, descended from John
Alexander, who came to America from near
Belfast, Ireland, about 1775, locating first
in Pennsylvania, then moving to Clark county,
John Alexander Jr., was born in Clark
county in 1800, came to Missouri in 1841,
settling on a farm five miles southwest of
was a minister of the Christian Church and
followed that profession while engaged in
He married Miss Elizabeth Radland of
Kentucky, and they reared five children, one
of whom, Cicero Alexander, established a
grocery business in Paris, the oldest grocery
store continuing under one name in the County,
Alexander and Sons.
Bryan family came to Monroe county from
Kentucky in 1836, settling south of Paris.
Dawson family came to Monroe county from
Kentucky in 1849, settling on a farm near
father, Nathaniel Dawson, was said to have
shipped more stock from the county than any
Burgess family are descendants of Pleasant M.
and Rebecca Towles Burgess, who came from
Virginia to Monroe county in 1842.
Mrs. Burgess was a farmer and one of
the leading tobacco raisers of the county.
His son Robert M., early in life,
became interested in livestock.
When only 14 years of age he drove
stock to the St. Louis market, becoming known
in the county and along the road as the boy
He became one of the county’s largest
stock dealers and farmers, specializing in
He was a familiar figure for years at
the county fair, capturing many premiums.
Conyers family descended from Major Thomas W.
Conyers, who came to Missouri in 1822 from
He was a veteran of the war of 1812 and
of the Black Hawk war.
Major Conyers settled in Boone county
first, coming to Monroe county in 1836.
He followed both farming and mercantile
life, his store in Paris being in charge of
his son, John S., who afterwards entered the
banking business with Judge D.H. Moss, being
the first cashier of the Paris National Bank.
Crutcher, born in Kentucky, came to Monroe
county in 1831.
He was the eleventh of twelve children.
His father sowed the first wheat grown
in the county.
When 16 years of age, Mr. Crutcher
entered a store in Paris to learn
merchandising, studying at night to complete
When 22, he was elected to the office
of sheriff, serving 4 years as sheriff and
In 1873, he was appointed county clerk
to fill out the term of William N. Penn.
He was elected to the next term and
filled that office many years.
A. Delaney came to Monroe county from Kentucky
Only 17 years of age, he and a brother
had the care of his mothers family in a new
In 1834 he married Miss Sallie Sparks
who bore him 12 children.
Mrs. Delaney died in 1852 and Mr.
Delaney later married a Miss Hammonds.
To this union were born six children.
Mr. Delaney started farming with 50
acres of land, two horses, a wagon,a
“skillet and lid”, bed and bedding and a
few household articles.
By industry and thrift he acquired 400
acres of find land well stocked with houses,
mules, cattle, hogs and sheep.
Fields family is of Maryland and Kentucky
Henry H. Field came to Monroe county in
1855 settling on a farm north of Paris.
Forman family is descended from John and Susan
Caldwell Foreman, who came to Monroe county in
1831, settling 7 miles west of Paris.
A son of this couple, William H.
Foreman, was the first teacher of vocal music
in the county.
Beginning about 1836 he taught
“singing school” almost 50 years.
Cephae Fox, born in Fayette county, Kentucky
in 1802, came with his parents to the
Territory of Missouri in 1819, settling near
This was the first settlement in what
is now known as Monroe county, and was known
for many years as the Fox Settlement.
Mr. Fox acquired the land in and around
the present site of Paris.
After Monroe county was formed from
Ralls county, Mr. Fox deeded part of his land
to the county for the town of Paris.
He was appointed commissioner to lay ff
the town and sell the lots when Paris was
selected as the county seat.
He helped survey the first public road
in the county.
He and Robert Caldwell opened the first
store in Paris, An article in the Christian
written at the time of his death, stated that
he was the first person in the county to be
“baptized upon the simple confession of his
This was at a Baptist meeting.
Soon after he was one of six to
organize the Christian Church.
His history is the early history of the
county and of the Christian Church, so devoted
was his life to each.
In 1866, he was elected a member of the
Glascock family came from Virginia to Ralls
county in 1820, becoming the largest stock
owners and land holders in the county, besides
raising a family of 13 children.
One of the sons, French Glascock,
represented the county in the legislature,
moved to Monroe county in 1866, locating near
Holliday, where he became a dominant factor in
the farm and community life of that part of
Johnson, one of a family of 22 children, came
to Missouri from Kentucky in 1839, locating
near Middle Grove.
The next year he bought land south of
Paris, near Elk Fork, where the family have
He and his wife, who was Miss Mary
Hibler of Kentucky, raised a family of 11
McCann family in Monroe county, is descended
from Pleasant and Susan Dawson McCann, who
came to Missouri from Kentucky in 1839,
settling south of Paris.
Mr. McCann was one of the county’s
largest landholders and stock raisers, owning
2000 acres of fine farm land.
McGee family was among the pioneer Virginians
who settled Kentucky in the days of Boone and
this family John McGee came to Missouri in
1822, settling in Howard county.
In 1825 he started with his wife and
family of 12 children, to Monroe county,
expecting to locate about 8 miles south of
between the Middle Grove settlement and this
point he and a daughter who were driving
cattle some distance behind the wagon and
family, were caught in a prairie fire and
burned so severely that they died in a few
mother and older children established a home
as the father had planned, became men and
women of influence, and are now part of Monroe