The Village of Corsicana - Barry Co., MO
Corsicana Mill

Photo Submitted by: Jim Garrison


Jim's Garrison family, including the Blankenship family, were early pioneers in the Corsicana area. His great grandfather John Rite Garrison farmed on Pogue's Creek and many of his ancestors were educated at Swindel College, west of Corsicana.

At one time, this mill was owned by his great uncle, Charter Garrison.

Goodspeed refers to it as Blankenship's Flouring Mill that was operated by John Garrison. Goodspeed also refers to it as L. J. Blankenship's grist mill, carding machine and cotton gin.

Goodspeed reports that in June of 1870 Blankenship added saw mill machining to his flouring mill on Indian Creek.

In 1882, Rev. L. J. Blankenship's flouring and woolen mills was listed as a Corsicana business in Goodspeed's History, pub. 1888.

Don Warner remembered going there when a child and believes that it burned probably in the 1930's.

Corsicana Mill Burns - 1919
Historical Information:

Historical Spots in Old Barry County by Nellie Alice Mills, copyright 1952. The first nine chapters are devoted to creeks long the borders of Lawrence and Newton Counties and throughout Barry County, with some history on Mills and the people who built them.

Chapter IX is Shoal Creek in Barry County, pages 65 -67:

Lorenz J. Blankenship came to Barry County and built a carding mill near Cassville in 1851. In 1855 he came to Corsicana. He was born in Lee County, VA in 1820. He was a natural mechanic; a plastered and bricklayer. He was one of a committee of three who planned and supervised the building of the first court house in Cassville, the old red brick that was there before the Civil War. He built the first hotel in Eureka Springs Arkansas- the Perry House - and the first brick building there. He was assisted at Eureka Springs by E S Harrison and Ben Williams who are living in Monett now each one ninety years old. They were young men in 1880 when those buildings were erected.

In 1850, Mr. Blankenship was married to Martha Garrison. Of their children, two sons, L. D. - called Dow by this family - and Elihu helped their father in the farming in which he engaged and in running his mills and caring industry at Corsicana. They also had a sawmill on Indian Creek. Their daughter Alice married H. R. Williams. H. R. Williams, who served eight years in the Missouri State Senate, was their son.

In 1885 their flouring mill was changed from the burr system to the roller process. When the Blankenships left Corsicana they went to Purdy.

Was it because the railroads missed the place the Corsicana became less important as the years passed?

Page 67: Corsicana was a thriving village until after 1888. The original name of Gadfly was, by petition of the inhabitants, changed in 1870 to Corsicana. In 1871 Lorenz J. Blankenship owned a flouring mill, a cotton gin, a carding mill and a saw mill; Thomas H. Jefferies, a drug store, Wm. Wright manufactured harness, boots and shoes. In 1882 there was a post office, three hotels, woolen mills, a bakery; M. H. Ricketts had blacksmith shops. There was a book store and carpenter shops; a brass band with twelve members and an orchestra with several members and a printing press.

The Valley Press was published at Corsicana from 1872 until the summer of 1876, when it was moved to Cassville where the name was changed to the Cassville Republican.

Page 66: Thomas H. Jefferies came to Corsicana in 1867. He was born in Kentucky in 1837; he came to Benton County, Arkansas, with his father. In 1858 he married Mary J. Ricketts. They came to Barry county in 1867 and located at Corsicana where the young man began the study of medicine, while he was operating a drug store. He began the practice there. His youngest daughter, Bertha, was born there. In 1877 the family move to Washburn where they lived until 1883, when they came to Plymouth now part of Monett. They left in Washburn one daughter, Emma, who married a young druggist, Frank N. Reese.

Dr. Jeffries chose service in a much needed field. Henry McCary reported that when he came to Barry County in 1837 their nearest physician was in Saline County on the Missouri. They laid in supplies and staple drugs.

Joys Creek - AKA: Joy's or Joyce Creek

Photo from Darla Marbut

Gadfly changed it's name from Gadfly to Corsicana, Jan 1870.

Photo from Darla Marbut

According to Goodspeed's History of Southwest MO, pub 1888, in 1882, Corsicana had a brass band of twelve members and an orchestra of seven members, a Presbyterian and Christian Society, and a school also.

The Cornet Band completed organization early in 1877 with A. D. Hunter, leader, W. Morrow, H.R. Williams, James Stephens, George Smith, P. L. Evans, Thomas J. Smith, W. M. Thomas, B. L. Evans, M. Hanlon, Charles Brown, Wilson Tidwell, O. P. Smith and M. H. Ricketts, as members.
Corsicana & Area - Families:



Submitted by Ted Courdin

According to Goodspeed's History of Southwest MO, pub. 1888, in 1882, Corsicana had these shops and business that were in operation:
  • J. L. Fly's store and the post-office,
  • Mrs. M. Kelly's,
  • Blankenship's and Shaw's Hotels,
  • Dr. W. C. McNatt's Drug Store,
  • Rev. L. J. Blankenship Flouring and Woolen Mill,
  • J. D. Carter's Baker,
  • A. C. McDermitt,
  • G. S. McNatt and H. Rickett's Blacksmith Shops,
  • S. Davis' Wagon Shop,
  • A. J. Campbell and W. R. Bingham's Carpenter Shops,
  • S. W. Shaw's Book Store
Cemeteries of the Corsicana Area:

Corsicana Cemetery

Old Fly Cemetery
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