History - Warren County MOGenWeb Project
Warren County, Missouri

Warren County is located on the western edge of the St. Louis Metropolitan Area. It is bordered by Lincoln and Montgomery Counties to the North, St. Charles County to the East, Calloway County to West, and Gasconade and Franklin Counties to the South.

 Warren County was formed from Montgomery County on the 5th of January 1833. Marthasville, located in the southern part of the county in the Missouri River Bottoms, is the oldest town in Warren County. It succeeded the French Village, La Charette. This French village was founded about 1766 at the mouth of Charette Creek for the convenience of hunting, trapping, and trading with the Indians. Charette was the most western settlement of white men when the Lewis and Clark expedition went up the Missouri River in 1804 and when it returned in 1806.

Marthasville was described in the gazetteer of Missouri in 1883 as; "First settled in 1801 by Colonel Daniel Boone and his son-in-law, Flanders Calloway, and known then as Calloway's Post, located near the Missouri River, in the southeastern part of Warren County, 20 miles southeast of Warrenton, the county seat, 5 miles north of Washington, on the MP Ry., 60 miles west of St. Louis, and one and one-half miles north of Marthasville Landing, on the Missouri River, the most convenient shipping point. The village contains saw, flour, and planing mills, all operated by steam. One Evangelical and three Methodist Churches, one German school, also white and colored public schools. Grain, live stock, and all kinds of farm produce are shipped in large quantities. Population, 350. Mail, tri-weekly. P.A. Quickert, postmaster.

 The Booneslick Trail crosses Warren County and is traversed daily, just as it has been for over a century and a half. The grandfather of all trails to the far west, its importance in history cannot be exaggerated. Originally a trace or pathway used by Indians, trappers, and fur traders, it was known then as the Light Horse Trail. In 1805 Daniel Boone and his son, Daniel Morgan Boone, on a hunting expedition, discovered the animal salt licks along the trail in Howard County. Boone's sons, Nathan and Daniel Morgan, were responsible for surveying and marking the trail, which then took their name. By 1819 the first stageline travelling the trail had been established following the trail, because it remained on higher ground and went due west from St. Louis and St. Charles. An average of 20 wagons and carriages used the trail on a weekly basis. The Booneslick Trail was the most travelled road in Missouri in the mid 1800's. It was crowded daily as emigrant travellers and stock passed through. The trail was immensely important as a connecting route between St. Louis, the gateway to the west, and the great Santa Fe and Oregon Trails that led to California and Oregon.

The early settlers were friends, relatives, and followers of Daniel Boone. Daniel Boone, in the last years of his life, lived most of the time with his daughter and son-in-law, Jemima and Flanders Calloway in Charrette and later in their house near Marthasville. His wife, Rebecca Bryan Boone, died in the Calloway home in 1813 and was buried in the nearby Bryan Family Cemetery situated on a knoll overlooking Teuque Creek. Daniel Boone died in 1820. His funeral was held at the Calloway farm and his body was interred next to Rebecca's.

Before Warren County was established, Gottfried Duden lived along Lake Creek from the fall of 1824 to the spring of 1827. After the defeat of Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815, many persons in Germany looked to America as the place to live, but living conditions in America were not known in Germany. Gottfried Duden wrote a book a book entitled, "Berichtueber eine Reise nach den westlichen Staaten Nord Amerikas", which has been called "the most important piece of literature in the history of German immigration". Greatly due to Duden's book and the letters of his travelling companion, Lewis Eversmann to Germany, the new state of Missouri became very alluring to the German people. In 1830 Augustus F.Grabs arrived to scout the area and prepare a settlement for a group organized in Berlin. In 1832 the Berlin group arrived in the Lake Creek and Marthasville area. Baron von Bock bought a Spanish grant and founded Dutzow. Two divisions of the Giessener Society led by Paul Follenius and Frederich Muench arrived in 1834 at the ports of New Orleans and Baltimore. The divisions broke up on arrival in America and the large parts that held together broke when they reached St. Louis. Many of them, including the leaders, settled in the Lake Creek area of Warren County. Despite this the area remained "American" and was reported as such by visitors. However after 1840, and especially after the flood of 1844, the area and the county became increasingly a settlement of German-Americans. In 1870, Friedrich Muench, then the authority on German immigration to Missouri, claimed Warren County to be the most German County in Missouri.

History graciously provided by Margy Ball Miles.  County history information taken largely from The Warren County Tribune, 20 Mar. 1991, and from The German Immigrants To The Marthasville Area by Ralph Gregory, Historian.

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