a full description of the state of Missouri; her agricultural,
mineralogical and geological character; her water courses
timberlands, soil and climate; the various railroad lines ...
description of each county in the state; the emancipation ordinance.
Nathan Howe Parker
county is located in the southern part of Northeast Missouri, and is
the center of what is termed, the "Blue Grass Region" of
Missouri. It is one of the large counties of the State, containing
422,703 acres, and in point of wealth, stands among the very first
of those counties that have no large cities.
TIMBER & PRAIRIE LAND
two-thirds of the area of the county was originally timber land, and
the remainder prairie. The prairies are not very large, and well
distributed over the county, so that not many of the farms of the
county, as now owned and occupied, are either wholly prairie or
wholly timber. Both the prairie and timber lands yield abundant
this there is a great abundance and of the best grades--enough to
meet all demands for farm and building purposes. The following,
among other varieties, are found: Black walnut, common shellbark,
thick shell-bark and pig-nut hickories, white and blue ash, white
and black burr, and many other varieties of oak; sugar tree, maple,
linn, sycamore, etc. Of the smaller growth there are red and black
haws, sumach, hazel, paw-paw, red-bud, and many others.
quality of the soil may almost be gather from the foregoing. It is
of the "bluff" formation, although not so well developed
as in some other parts of the country. Professor Swallow, in
his geological survey of 1855, says, that the "bluff"
formation prevails in this county, and that the soil is well adapted
to corn, wheat, oats, and tobacco. The clay underlying the
soil is very productive. Manure is at hand, and the soil can be
indefinitely improved by deep plowing and a proper rotation of
are ninety-seven school districts in the county, and a county school
fund of over $107,000. This is loaned out at ten per cent interest,
which is applied to maintaining free schools in every district in
the county. The schools are kept open from four to nine months; and,
including the county's share of the State fund, as much money is
expended for school purposes in Monroe County as anywhere in the
West, in proportion to population.
all parts of the county there is the greatest abundance of running
water. The North, Middle, Elk, and South Fork of Salt River pass
through the county from east to west; and they and their tributaries
afford good running fresh water throughout the dryest seasons.
CROPS & GRASSES
wheat, oats, tobacco, timothy, and blue grass are the great staples
of the county. Other crops and grasses are produced, but most
attention is given to the above. The corn crop of 1879 made an
average of forty bushels to the acre for the entire county. Blue
grass grows spontaneously, and Monroe has as fine blue grass
pastures as there are in the world, and a great many of them.
are competing lines of railway to Chicago and St. Louis, the best
markets in the west.
the foregoing it is plain that Monroe is a great county for
stock-raising, and, therefore, those of the farmers are doing best
who are devoting themselves to that industry. All such are
accumulating wealth from year to year. The census of 1880 will
probably show that this is one of the greatest cattle, horse, mule,
sheep, and hog-producing counties in the West. In point of size and
quality, the cattle sent to market are unsurpassed, and command the
top of the market.
denominations are represented, and every neighborhood has its church
and school-house. There is no such thing as ostracism for opinion's
all the facts into consideration, it can be confidently asserted
that nowhere can cheaper framing and stock-raising lands be bought
than in Monroe County--the prices ranging from ten to twenty dollars
for the best improved, and much lower for unimproved lands.