Scott County, Missouri
Contributed by: Margaret Cline Harmon (3/11/98)
The town of Morley was laid out in September of 1868 by the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Rail Road Company and can be found at the Scott County Court House in Benton, MO in Plat Book No. 1. The name was named in honor of James H. Morley, Chief Engineer, for the planning building of the Pilot Knob-Belmont line. Streets were all named for men connected in one way or another with the railroad. The exceptions were, four streets were given women's first names, and one street was named in honor of Gen. Nathaniel Watkins who lived near Morley.
Although the town was laid out in 1868, the railroad was not fully completed until August 15, 1869. Morley's post office opened Jan 7, 1869. The April 2, 1869 issue of the Commerce "Dispatch" cited Morley with a population of 78 citizens. The Census of 1880 showed the population as 325 and by 1910 it reached 494. Today, Morley is a small town just off Highway 61 between Benton and Sikeston, Missouri in Morley Township.
Morley had two of its own newspapers in its history: Scott County Citizen, published between January 1 - December 31, 1909, and Scott County Banner, published January 1, 1914 - August 4, 1921. These newspapers are available to view on microfilm at the State Historical Society's office in Columbia, Missouri.
There are at least two
cemeteries in Morley:
Old Morley Cemetery, which began operation in 1866 and is still used today. To locate this cemetery, once you are in Morley, it is within four-tenths mile of the main city junction. Turn left at the stop sign and drive straight on that road (becomes a lesser road) until you see the cemetery on the left. It is on the west side of Kirkwood Street within the North City Limits in Morley. There are over 1,500 graves in the stately old cemetery.
New Morley Cemetery began operation in 1942 and continues to be used today. There are over 500 graves within the cemetery. It is on the southern side of town.
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