Bohemian Cemetery Marks Past

The names of the tombstones are straight from the Old Country. Kokesh. Soukup, Stoklasa. Mlika. Karsky. Pelikan. Their gravestones mark the final resting places for a gruop of Bohemian immigrants who established farms in the fertile Thompson River valley, west of Cainsville in neighboring Harrison County.

The names of the tombstones are straight from the Old Country. Kokesh. Soukup, Stoklasa. Mlika. Karsky. Pelikan. Their gravestones mark the final resting places for a gruop of Bohemian immigrants who established farms in the fertile Thompson River valley, west of Cainsville in neighboring Harrison County.

Those Bohemian settlers earned a reputation as a hard-working, yet clannish, ethnic community which retained its own language and customs for generations after moving to America. Though the Bohemians eventually were assimilated into American society, the community’s legacy still is visible in a quiet cemetery on a hillside overlooking the valley where these new immigrants once farmed.

The origins of the Bohemian herritage in Northwest Missouri may be traced by reading the inscriptions — many written in the Bohemian language — on the tombstones in the cemetery, located in a beautiful grove of pine trees. The cemetery dates back to the early years of the Bohemian community which got its start in the mid-1870s.

The Bohemian Cemetery is located just off Route B, about six miles north of the community of Mt. Moriah. Visitors to the cemetery will notice that the grave sites are still well maintained, a tribute to the strong family ties among the descendants of the original settlers.

The Bohemians came to this country from their homeland in western Czechslovokia. Most came to the New World to “escape the unsettledness and continuous wars” in Europe before the turn of the century, according to E.J. Stoklasa, who grew up in the Bohemian community.

“Most came to Cainsville to get away before their sons had to go into the army,” Stoklasa said.

The Bohemians had their own assembly hall southwest of Cainsville. Stoklasa recalls that the assembly building, which operated into the 1920s, was home for all types of community activities ranging from religious meetings for the predominantly Catholic Bohemians to all-night dances.

The Bohemians were primarily small farmers, Greek and Italian immigrants also came to Cainsville to work in the coal mines which operated there until the end of World War I. At one time, Cainsville had its own railroad and boasted a population of about 2,000 persons (about 4 times as many people as today).

Persons interested in the architecture of the early 20th century will enjoy a visit to Cainsville. One of the most interesting features is the Victoian-style Dr. Nally home, now the site of the Stoklasa Funeral Home. Cainsville is located near the intersection of Harrison County Routes N and B, about eight miles north of U.S. Hwy. 136.

Reprinted from “Treasure the Times,” a tourism guide published in 1988.

Oldest Standing Log Cabin in the Region

The oldest standing log cabin in Northwest Missouri is the Harris Family Log Cabin, reconstructed for display at the Jamesport City Park. The 18×18 cabin was built between 1830-36 about four miles east of Jamesport. Present-day family members only speculate about the furnishings for the family which included 10 children.

The oldest standing log cabin in Northwest Missouri is the Harris Family Log Cabin, reconstructed for display at the Jamesport City Park. The 18×18 cabin was built between 1830-36 about four miles east of Jamesport. Present-day family members only speculate about the furnishings for the family which included 10 children.

The Harrises trace their ancestry back to Sir William Harris, born in Cressex, England, in 1583. He and his wife, Alice, and son sailed for America on the ship “Prosperous.” By 1620, the son, Captain Tom, married, and settled on the James River in Virginia to raise his family of 17 children.

A grandson of Tom Harris named Richmond drifted to North Carolina and enlisted in the Revolutionary Army. After the war, he moved to Kentucky, married, and had six children, one of whom was Jesse Harris. This was the same Jesse Harris who came to Missouri in 1830 to homestead land in what is now Grundy County.

Jesse had left his wife, Polly, and their 10 children back in Kentucky when he started building his first cabin. But the presence of so many Indians in the area made him concerned for safety, so he left the half-finished cabin in 1832 and returned to Kentucky.

Before long, however, Jesse learned that the Indians had moved to Kansas territory, so he and two friends organized a wagon train of 30 or 40 units to bring several families to the area. Among them were the Arbuckles, Darnabys, Wares, Dockerys and Embreys.

Jesse completed the cabin in 1836 before the winter set in. One Harris child died on the long journey to their new home, but the parents had a new son the following year — the first white baby born in Jefferson Township.

The reconstruction of the cabin was a family project. Ray Harris of Seattle, Wash., and his cousin, Herbert Harris, did much of the work. Both men, in their 70s at the time, had fathers who were great-grandsons of Jesse and Polly Harris who built the cabin.

Each log was carefully numbered at the original site back in a pasture. Most of the labor was done with hand tools in the old-fashioned way. During the reconstruction, logs were fitted together, fastened with wooden pegs and square nais. Also helping in the project were Amish workmen.

The front door and latch are believed to be the oldest available in the county. Antique glass was installed in the windows. A sleeping loft was reconstructed. Rough sawed lumber was used to rebuild the floor that rotted away after the cabin was used in recent years to shelter cattle and sheep.

Johnny Kurtz constructed the native stone fireplace which covers most of the south wall of the cabin. It took two weeks to construct, using 27 tons of rock. It is a replica of the original fireplace which was torn down before 1900.

Cement was used as a filler between the rocks and in the log walls for durability, though the original material was mud. In the late 1800s, the log walls had been covered over with weather-boarding, helping to preserve them. Also several additions had been built on at various times.

The rock foundation,the old cellar and a pear tree planted by Polly Harris from a seed she brought from Kentucky still remain at the original site on the Levi Beechy farm.

The log cabin has numerous distinctions: site where the first yarn and thread was spun in the township (by Polly from wool, flax, and hemp); site of the first school, in a shed addition with 15 students; site of the first church services, by Baptist minister Rev. Elijah Murrell, and later the first marriage, Elizabeth Harris to Rev. Ben Ashley; site of first birth of a white child, James Porter Harris, the father of Dr. George Dowe Harris, early day Jamesport physician (the last Harris to live in the cabin).

Reprinted from “Treasure the Times,” a tourism publication, Gallatin Publishing Co., 1988

Cattle Drives in Daviess County

The grass of the Great Plains upon which the buffaloes had grazed for thousands of years proved to be equally good for cattle. Government land purchased from the Indians was without fences until 1875 when barbed wire first came into use. Most private land was without fences. The tall grasses of the plains extended across northern Missouri, Illinois and into Indiana.

The grass of the Great Plains upon which the buffaloes had grazed for thousands of years proved to be equally good for cattle. Government land purchased from the Indians was without fences until 1875 when barbed wire first came into use. Most private land was without fences. The tall grasses of the plains extended across northern Missouri, Illinois and into Indiana.

Cattle raisers took advantage of the open range to graze their livestock. Since all the animals were feeding on free grass, the owners prospered greatly if markets could be found. Oxen and mules for the westward movement were in demand into the 1860s. As settlers went West, so did surplus lumber. But beef went East on foot or by boat until 1870.

The great Texas cattle drives from 1867 to 1884 of a million head per year is a familiar story. The driving of livestock to market is at least a 5000-year-old story. Texans didn’t invent or discover the cowboy or the cattle drive; livestock was moved from place to place by driving them before there were cattle trucks or railroads. Daviess County also had its cattle drives.

The earliest reported cattle drive in Daviess County occurred in the fall of 1819. Lt. Gabriel Field of the U.S. 6th Infantry left Glasgow, MO, in Chariton County with 127 milk cows and 700 stock hogs. He was the first local trail boss and had 30 drovers and a 6-horse chuck wagon. The stock went northwest through what was to become Daviess County land, on the east side of the Grand River, on a trail Lt. Field had prepared during September and early October.

This effort was part of the Yellowstone Expedition, to supply Camp Missouri some 10 miles above Omaha in Iowa territory. There was no map made of this trail, and in our 1833 maps, no note was made in regards to its location. Lt. Field was from Jefferson City, under the command of Col. Henry Atkinson.

The last reported large cattle drive from Daviess County was conducted by Matthew L. Harbord in 1849. This herd of beef from the northern part of Daviess County went east to the Mississippi River, then north to Chicago. Harbord, 36, died from cholera in July, 1849, on the return trip. He is bured in McLean County, IL.

Harbord'[s son-in-law, N.B. (Pole) Brown, became operator of that business and a great cattle shipper when the railroads came. Brown is reported to have shipped 2000 carloads of cattle during 1870-1880. In 1880 he shipped 400 carloads of cattle from Daviess, Harrison, Gentry and Nodaway counties. Since one carload held 40 head of cattle, Brown would have shipped 16,000 head of cattle during this one year.

The last good government land in Daviess County was pre-empted in 1857, and much swamp land was left unsold into the 1870s. Very little land in northern and northeastern Daviess County was purchased by private owners before 1850. Most of the better land in the county was sold under the Pre-emption Act of 1841 for $1.25 per acre, or donated to help develop the railroads. The National Homestead Act (1862-1891), where up to 160 acres of land could be obtained free, was not used in Daviess County.

Cattle marks and brands were started in this county in 1875. By May, 1886, there were 34 brands recorded in the courthouse. Our first brand was the number “2” (size 2-1/2″ x 2″) on the left shoulder of horses and mules and left hip of cattle. The brand was registered by William and David Koger in 1875.

Open range in Daviess County seems rather strange in today’s world. The study of history lets us know a seemingly foreign land right here at home.

Written by David Stark, Gallatin; October, 1997.

The Prominence of Judge Adam Black

Judge Adam Black (1801-1890) is remembered in Daviess County as the Justice of the Peace during the period of the Mormon struggles of 1838.

Judge Adam Black (1801-1890) is remembered in Daviess County as the Justice of the Peace during the period of the Mormon struggles of 1838.

Adam Black was born in Henderson County, KY, on Sept. 11, 1801, into a large Virginia family. The family moved to Missouri in 1819 when Adam was 18 years old, stopping for a short time at Boonville before moving into Ray County soon after it was formed from the western part of Howard County (Ray County included all of northwest Missouri until 1822).

In November, 1824, Black was elected Sheriff of Ray County. He held that office until February, 1827, when he served as county assessor for one year. William Black, a judge of the Ray County court (1825-27), was probably the father or older brother of the young sheriff Adam Black. The first census of Ray County was conducted by Adam Black while he served as sheriff.

In September, 1825, Adam Black married Mary W. Morgan, the daughter of Ira and Abigail Morgan. The couple raise nine children, including two girls. The 1830 census shows Adam Black in Ray County with three children and a wife in her 20s.

In 1833 Adam Black selected a new place to settle in the Grand River, just south of what is presently Jameson, MO. He was one of the election judges at Millport in Grand River Township, a voting precinct which included the northeast part of Daviess County and all of the land east of the river. In that election, Adam Black was named Justice of the Peace. He later became a judge of the county court in 1838, serving four years. In 1837 he was commissioned to lay off the road districts in Grand River Township, and in 1841 he built the first county bridge across Muddy Creek on one of those roads.

The 1840 census shows Adam Black with wife and seven children in Daviess County.

When Gentry County was formed, Black moved up the valley (in 1845) to be on the first grand jury of that county. He served as Justice of the Peace and was a judge of that county court for four years. In February, 1849, Black married Margaret Groom in Gentry County. This couple had no children.

In October, 1857, Black married Sallie Kelley, the daughter of Edward Kelley and this union had three children, including one daughter.

In March, 1861, Judge Black was apoitned by the governor to the commission to organize a new county, to be called Worth County. Because of the Civil War, Black left that county court job and moved to Jackson Township in Livingston County. He was elected to that county court as a district judge in 1872 and served three years.

From 1861 to 1890, Adam Black resided on Poosey land in Jackson Township. His farm was near the old Lilly Grove Church. He was buried just east of there in the Hutchison-Black Cemetery. His grave is in Poosey State Forest, north of the Indian Creek Community Lake.

Even in his old age, Adam Black continued his interests in politics. His views were conservative, reflecting his family ties to Virginia and to states’ rights. In spite of his service as county judge in Daviess, Gentry, Worth and Livingston counties and his work as sheriff of the vast Ray County, Black considered himself a farmer.

Written by David Stark, Gallatin; October, 2001.

The Pioneers of Virginia Ridge

The first settlers of Virginia Ridge in Daviess County came to stay. This was during the time immediately after the “Mormon War” of 1838, a time when Daviess County most certainly was in the national news. A few families came here directly from the Greenbrier Valley of western Virginia. They came to Virginia Ridge, purchasing government land when it was opened for sale in 1842. Owen Ellis (1793-1871) was a leader, bringing a wife and sister and 17 children. He was the only one to purchase land on Virginia Ridge, or anywhere nearby, as early as 1842.

The first settlers of Virginia Ridge in Daviess County came to stay. This was during the time immediately after the “Mormon War” of 1838, a time when Daviess County most certainly was in the national news. A few families came here directly from the Greenbrier Valley of western Virginia. They came to Virginia Ridge, purchasing government land when it was opened for sale in 1842. Owen Ellis (1793-1871) was a leader, bringing a wife and sister and 17 children. He was the only one to purchase land on Virginia Ridge, or anywhere nearby, as early as 1842.

Owen Ellis of Daviess County descended from Owen and Christina Ellis. They moved from Augustua County, Virginia, to Wolf Creek on the Greenbreir about 1785. In Monroe County, VA, about 1812, two Ellis brothers, Owen and John, married Elizabeth and Eleanor Eagen, daughters of John and Elizabeth Eagen. These brothers were hunting and fishing in northern Ray County, MO, when Daviess County was legally formed in 1836.

The first map of Virginia Ridge shows where Owen Ellis choose to live. The only other settler in 1839 was Matthew and Magdeline Patton, also from Virginia. They built a mill about a mile northwest on Big Creek. Owen Ellis purchased a quarter section in September, 1842. In 1843 he purchased the quarter section south of him for his son, John E., and other nearby land for his sons, Philip, Harvey and Henry.

Back at Kelley’s Creek in Monroe County, VA, Joseph and Polly Taylor Gwinn had four daughters who also came to Virginia Ridge. In 1843, James Jarrett Graham and Martha (Gwinn) Graham purchased the quarter section north of Owen Ellis; John Jr. Meadows and Nancy (Gwinn) Meadows purchased the next quarter section north. Samuel Gwinn and Sarah (Gwinn) Gwinn purchased 80 acres east of the Ellises.

Levi Morris Jarrett and Paulina (Gwinn) Jarrett came later to purchase land to the east. Joseph McClung married Elizabeth Eillis in 1800 and their son, Alexander, and daughter, Elizabeth McClung, purchased the half section onf the north edge of new Pattonsburg from the government in 1843. Andrew and Susan Graham Jarrett purchased a quarter section east of John Meadows. Other land nearby was purchased by William and Cathrine Johnson Graham. and Matthew Patton also purchased his spot in 1843.

Owen Ellis’ daughter, Hannah, married James Auldridge and they purchased land to the northwest of Owens’ land in 1851. Owen Ellis’ daughter, Virginia, had married Thomas Caraway from Virginia in 1841, and he owned land to the northwest of the McClungs in later years. Owens’ daughter, Elizabeth, married John M. Miller in 1845. Owen Ellis’ son, Elijah, came in from Ohio to buy land in Salem Township, to the east. They were Elijah and Grace Canada Ellis. The lineage continues for 50 years.

Owen Ellis built a chapel and started a cemetery about 1845 on his land. The cemetery was in use until 1925. Bethel Church and Cemetery were a little to the east, and Virginia Ridge School was nearer to the east of Owen.

These were Protestant families who settled wester Augusta County, VA, between 1745 and 1770 for religious freedom. They were mostly stockmen who lived in the valleys of Calfpasture, Cowpasture and Bullpasture Rivers on the west side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. They crossed the Alleghany Mountains near White Sulpur Springs after the Indian wars were over, and were looking for new grasslands as well as wildlife to hunt and fish.

The families were intermarried in Virginia, and continued to intermarry on Virginia Ridge around the Virginia Ridge School until the school closed in 1949. These pioneers have their passing marked by stones in the Ellis and Bethel Cemeteries.

Written by David Stark, Gallatin

Before Gallatin, There Was Coon Grove

In a part of Daviess County that became Monroe Township was a place called Coon Grove. It was one of the centers of activity in the area before Gallatin was organized in 1838.

In a part of Daviess County that became Monroe Township was a place called Coon Grove. It was one of the centers of activity in the area before Gallatin was organized in 1838.

Andrew (Bva 1784) and Mary C. Collins McHaney (Bva 1787) came to Coon Grove in 1832, which was then part of northern Ray County. Andrew was in Ray County in 1830 with one son, a wife, and four daughters (one of the daughters was married in Boone County in 1823).

Coon Grove was east of today’s Highway 13. It was a stand of forest trees with prairie grasses all around. It was on the east part of Section 9, west part of Section 10 (T58, R27) in Monroe Township. The old trace (trail) from Richmond divided at Coon Grove, but both trails ran through the grove. The north part of the trace went north across Honey Creek and the east trail went to a ford on Grand River below the mouth of Honey Creek. Andrew’s land was on the east side of the grove. Honey Creek was on the north and west and Haw Brnach was on the south and east.

County records report that the first county election took place April 29, 1837, to select two justices of the peace and one constable for each of three townships. The election at Honey Creek Township was ordered to be held at the houe of Andrew McHaney. John Splawn, Elijah Foley and Andrew McHaney were appoitned to be the election judges.

Coon Grove got its name becuase there was “more coon hunting going on there than in all the rest of the county put together” and “it was proven that generally the hunter was caught and not the coon.” These statements need explanation.

Andrew McHaney had very charming, grown daughters. It was said that “by a smile they could drive out all thoughts of coons from the heads of the young men.” Hunters always managed to get as far as Coon Grove in the evenings “but seldom got any further.” According to the 1882 History Book (page 147), “the young ladies were amiable and vivacious and had many friends and visitors.”

Andrew’s son, William L (Bva 1820), married Martha H. Stokes (Bva 1824) in Daviess County. Before he married in 1848, William was involved in the Mormon War in Daviess County. William and John Comer, along with Allen Miller, went to Richmond in September, 1838, to get a stand of arms to form the county’s militia unit. But while going through Caldwell County on their return, they were captured by its militia and held as hostages. The 45 stands of arms were taken from them.

Andrew’s daughter, Mary Jane, married Jacob B. Oxford in 1840. Andrew’s daughter, Martha Ann, married Lewis S. Tarwater (1813-1859), the son of Lewis and Nancy Tarwater.

Nancy McHaney married Thoas P. Simmons in 1836 in Jackson County. Capt. Simmons formed a unit in Daviess County for the Mexican War, but he died on his way to Mexico.

Andrew had a grandson and graddaughter who lived with him at Coon Grove in 1850. The grandson was the son of John B. Wood and Christiana McHaney Wood. The grandson was John W. Wood (1833-1892) who had lost his father at the age of three. John W. married Sarah J. Hemry (1836-1902) in August, 1857, in Daviess County. John W. was educated in the county and was a school teacher for six years and held several county and township offices. The granddaughter, Sarah, about who lttle is known, was born in Missouri in 1837. Andrew’s home in 1850 also had a father-in-law, Thomas Collins (Bva 1764).

Sara E. McHaney married the Rev. Willis E. Dockery and her only surviving child was Alexander M., who was well-known throughout Missouri as governor in 1900.

Andrew’s place of rest has been lost but, in all probability, is in Coon Grove at the Whitt Cemetery.

Written by David Stark, Gallatin, April, 2001.

McCully’s Mill along the Grindstone

There was an early settlement south of Grand River, near Grindstone Creek, in the summer of 1838. It may have also been called Miller’s Grove in some county records.

There was an early settlement south of Grand River, near Grindstone Creek, in the summer of 1838. It may have also been called Miller’s Grove in some county records.

This place was raided by the Mormons about the same time Gallatin and Millport were burned and looted. Danite leader Seymore Brunson (Brownson) lead the raid on “Grindstone Fork” and several Mormon researchers have asked me to locate this place.

So far, I can only guess where it was. It seems that Grindstone Creek ran out into the bottom land of Grand River and changed its flow about every flood. There was a point south on Grindstone where the course didn’t change and that place may have been the location of the first water-powered mill built in Daviess County.

There also may have been a still operated at that site in the early days, which also made it of interest to travelers. After 1840, the still was moved up the river a mile or so and shows on maps to be on the south bluff.

This mill is not to be confused with a place called Groomer’s Mill on Grand River. It was referred to in 1847 when it was being run by John McCully. There was a ferry license from time to time issued by the County Court for that location. A bridge was proposed for that spot in 1848 but rejected by the County Court.

In 1860, the place was the residence of Isaac McCully and Fayless McCully. It was generally known as the Dave Groomer Mill in later years and shows clearly in the 1876 county plat books.

I think the Grindstone Forks Mill was sold to Taylor McCully in the period 1839-41.

The first county roads north of Gallatin were constructed to this “Forks of Grindstone” location. In the court records (Book A, p. 59) there was a place in Daviess County first mentioned as Jacob Groomer’s Mill on Grindstone Fork.

The mill was discussed in connection with a proposed road leading from Gallatin to that place. Court members M.T. Green, James H. “Willson” and Adam Black ordered that two roads be constructed in what was then called Grindstone Township.

Road District No. 1 was to start at Grand Street in Gallatin and run northwest across the prairie, passing near William Prewett’s (north of Lake Viking), then west to Zachariah Clevenger’s (near the east side of I-35), then directly to Groomer’s Mill. This route was requested by Thomas P. Gilreath, Elizah Frost and William Roper. William Prewett was to oversee the work and could call on allotting Justice John Wright for funds and “hands.”

The court also approved Road District No. 2 and Vincent Smith was appointed overseer with the same authority. Road District No. 2 of Grindstone Township was to build a road running from Groomer’s Mill on Grindstone Fork southward, passing near the Mason W. Cope place, then to James McCoy’s place, then directly to the prairie at John Higgins’, then to intersect by nearest and best route to the east-west prairie road at Vincent T. Smith’s place.

I believe that the east-west prairie road ran from Gallatin toward what became the county line, just to the west of the old Black Cemetery. It ran just south of Smith Branch, northwest of Winston.

John Higgins held the SW 1/4 and W 1/2 of the SE 1/4 (S-20, T-59, R-29) in 1839. No land could be found owned by James McCoy.

Wiley Cope owned the W 1/2 (S-17, T-59, R-29) in 1839 and may be the Mason W. Cope referred to in the court records. That would be the land north of Owl Creek, south of KK Highway and northeast of Alta Vista. Road District No. 2 was petitioned by Vincent Smith and had 23 other signers and was to be “viewed and marked out” by John Cope, John A. Williams and John Wright.

The county court judges took the above action on March 4, 1840, on a Wednesday in the presence of Sheriff John Pinkerton and County Clerk Robert Wilson.

Jacob Groomer had made original entry to the W 1/2 of the SW 1/4 (S-15, T-60, R-29). This would be about a mile or more up Grindstone Creek from its current mouth on Grand River. He was known to be in Daviess County on March 10, 1838.

After the roads were built Sept. 28, 1840, Jacob Groomer purchased another 40 acres south of the original piece from Isaac Groomer, who had before sold Jacob another 40 acres, SE 1/4 of the SW 1/4 (S-15, T-60, R-29) in February 1840.

I would like to have more information about these families; more on the exact location of the mill; more on the power source for the mill; and more on its ues uses i.e. grist, saw, carting, etc.

This mill was called, in most records, the Taylor McCully Mill and the road record could be found on pages 59-63 of Book A of the County Court. Any historic records about this first water mill in the county could lead to a historic site development in later years.

Grindstone Creek runs so clear, clean and cool most of the year that this development would be made into a very nice stop for people going north or south on I-35 Highway.

Written by David Stark

Osage, Missouri Tribes Once Blanketed the State

Missouri, Mississippi, Meramec, Osage, Kahoka, Kenoma and Kewanee. The strange-sounding names on highway signs are reminders of the American Indians who once called Missouri home. Few Indians are left in the state. The names and some villages that still can be toured are nearly all that remain of a rich heritage.

Missouri, Mississippi, Meramec, Osage, Kahoka, Kenoma and Kewanee. The strange-sounding names on highway signs are reminders of the American Indians who once called Missouri home. Few Indians are left in the state. The names and some villages that still can be toured are nearly all that remain of a rich heritage.

The territory that now lies basically north of Interstate 70 once was controlled by the Missouri Indians. Some records call them the Missourias; the first French explorers knew them as the Oumessourit. The Osage tribe ruled south of the highway.
Today, visitors can explore what was the main Missouri village in a hilly area known as the Pinnacles in what is now Van Meter State Park in Saline County in central Missouri. From this high country overlooking the Missouri River, the tribe could control traffic on the river, which was the only highway through the territory at the time.

A portion of the Indian village and other ceremonial sites have been preserved at the camp that at one time had a population of about 5,000. A visitor’s center interprets the history of the tribe and the park’s natural landscape.

The main Osage village was on the Osage River in Vernon County in the southwestern corner of the state. Sometime between 1714 and 1719, early French businessmen convinced some of the Osage to set up a second, smaller village near the Missouri village.

Now called the Osage Village State Historic Site, the main village contains an archaeological excavation of what was believed to be an Osage ceremonial lodge and a typical dwelling. A walking tour of the area includes Blue Mound, which Osage legend calls the burial place of a number of prominent chiefs.

Archaeologists have found evidence of other tribes on the Missouri side of the Mississippi River – the Illinois, Sauk and Fox, among others – but they were never here in large numbers.

“Going back into prehistory, there were many tribes here,” said William Foley, a historian at Central Missouri State in Warrensburg. “Because of the river systems, this was a kind of a crossroads. But the Missouri and the Osage were the main resident tribes when the first explorers came.”

Two Frenchmen, Father Jacques Marquette and explorer-fur trader Louis Joliet are the first known Europeans to visit Missouri, having come down the Illinois River from the Great Lakes to the Mississippi River in 1673. From Indians they encountered at the confluence of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers just north of what is now St. Louis, they learned of the Missouri and the Osage.

The Missouri was one of several related tribes that inhabited the upper Midwest at the time, including the Iowa, Winnebago and Oto.

The origins of the Osage aren’t clear, historians say, but they may have formed from smaller groups in the area, or they may have been a spinoff of the Kansa. They’re believed to be related to such tribes as the Omaha, Kansa, Ponca and Quapaw in Nebraska, Kansas and Oklahoma.

Although they were similar in many ways, the two tribes reacted very differently to the coming of the Europeans.

The Missouri apparently didn’t deal heavily with the French traders and went into a decline. The Osage welcomed them and quickly developed a bustling market economy. Both were relatively peaceful at the outset.

“We tend to focus on the outbreaks of violence, and there were those,” Foley said. “But cooperation was much more commonplace. They lived together, intermingled.”

While the Osage thrived, the 5,000 or so Missouri found first contact with the whites to be deadly.

The tribe was ravaged by smallpox and other diseases brought by the Europeans and by 1758 numbered only about 600. Survivors moved to Nebraska and joined with the Oto tribe. By 1800, there were no Missouri left in the state that was to be named for them two decades later.

The last full-blood Missouri is believed to have died about 1908, and the remainder live near their agency land in Red Rock, Okla.

Disease didn’t hit the Osage so hard, and the tribe adapted well and grew strong under the European influx. At their peak, the Osage controlled the prairie and plains country running from the Missouri and Mississippi rivers southwest to the Red River on the Oklahoma-Texas border. They occupied most of Missouri and large portions of Arkansas, Kansas and Oklahoma.

In the end, however, history caught up with the Osage and more than a century of harmony came to an end.

As a natural gateway to the west, southern Missouri became flooded with tribes forced out by white settlement of the eastern United States. Tribes such as the Chickasaw, Cherokee, Kickapoo and Delaware passed through and often stopped, taking the land and game normally hunted by the now-outnumbered Osage.

The tribe was forced to sign treaties giving away larger and larger portions of their territory. Finally, in 1825, tribal leaders were summoned to St. Louis and forced to give up all claims to their lands.

For a while, the tribe fought efforts to move it onto reservations. But constant pressure wore them down, and they eventually ended up in what is now Osage County just northwest of Tulsa, Okla.

Source: Associated Press, St. Joseph (Mo.) News-Press, Monday, August 16, 1993.

The Lewis Mill in Daviess County

Courthouse records show 23 grain mills operated in Daviess County prior to the Civil War. Not all of these were water-powered, and few if any mills west of the Mississippi River were like the Lewis Mill.

Courthouse records show 23 grain mills operated in Daviess County prior to the Civil War. Not all of these were water-powered, and few if any mills west of the Mississippi River were like the Lewis Mill.

The original mill built about 1855 was rebuilt in 1863 by Eramus Lewis, using an outward flow reaction turbine. Water flow amplified by a 100Šfoot race tunnel powered a horizontal turbine wheel rather than a traditional water wheel. Despite modifications, the Lewis Mill did not have sufficient power to perform grinding profitably. In 1876 the tunnel caved in beyond repair.

In 1878 the mill sold and was refitted but continued in declining use. Eventually, the weathered building fell victim to the torrential waters of an untamed Grand River during the afternoon of May 25, 1899.

Silt entombed portions of al three mills which operated at the site until bridge builders cut into the timber remains in November, 1989. Bridge construction abruptly stopped. Excavation revealed many mill parts, most unusual being the wooden water turbine wheel still intact.

Detailed information about grist milling, particularly the Lewis Mill, is available at the Daviess County Library.

Daviess County’s First Grand River Ferry

Daviess County government was first founded in the spring of 1837, but some settlers had been here for seven years as part of northern Ray County. One of the first businesses in the county was a ferry across Grand River, at the mouth of Honey Creek.

Daviess County government was first founded in the spring of 1837, but some settlers had been here for seven years as part of northern Ray County. One of the first businesses in the county was a ferry across Grand River, at the mouth of Honey Creek.

I was unable to confirm the ferry in Ray County records since the first two books on the actions of the County Court were not in the Courthouse, but I will tell you what I have on it. Most of the information is in our 1882 history book for Daviess County.

John and Ruth Tarwater claim that they came from Tennessee and were the third white family to come to this area. They say that they built the third white cabin, on the east side of the Grand River, north of the mouth of Honey Creek. They reported arriving Feb. 25, 1830, with a daughter, also named Nancy. John’s daughter, Elizabeth, was born Jan. 8, 1832, and was claimed to be the first white child born in what became Daviess County.

John and Ruth’s first cabin was reported to have been in SŠ34, TŞ59, RŠ27, just above the mouth of Honey Creek. The early maps, done in 1833, show a cabin just east of section 34 in section 35, just across the east section line. This cabin, east of the Grand River, may be the cabin in question. John ran the first Grand River ferry, just south of the cabin, that could land on either side of Honey Creek.

John’s daughter, Nancy, married W.K. Nation in 1841, the son of Rev. Christopher Nation. He had a cabin north of the place of the later Wabash Depot about where the second Grand River bridge was constructed. This place was called the Adkinson Crossing and had a covered bridge for a few months. W.K. Nation claims that he served in state forces at the Battle of “Honn’s” Mill in 1838.

Before the end of 1833, John and Ruth Tarwater moved to SŠ14, TŞ60, RŠ28 to build another cabin in what became Grand River Township. This cabin shows on the 1833 map as being at the head of
Tub Run Creek on the edge of the prairie about where the black top ends just to the west of Jameson. John may have been the northernmost settler at that time.

John Tarwater helped to form the first Baptist church in Grand River Township on Dec. 14, 1833, “two miles northeast of Jameson.” Christopher Nation was reported to have been the first minister to give a speech in Grand River Township. He was a Methodist.

So, in the terms of first in Daviess County, this is reported to be the 1) first ferry, 2) first business in the county, 3) first white child born and 4) first squatter to move on north.

Written by David Stark, Gallatin

Grist Mill Guide for Missouri

An unusual example of a pre-Civil War grist mill is in storage in Northwest Missouri in Daviess County. Known as the Lewis Mill, the wooden water turbin which powered the milling operation was uncovered intact during bridge construction across the Grand River in 1989. Numerous other relics were uncovered and are preserved but in storage, awaiting the time when enthusiasts can muster a display.

An unusual example of a pre-Civil War grist mill is in storage in Northwest Missouri in Daviess County. Known as the Lewis Mill, the wooden water turbin which powered the milling operation was uncovered intact during bridge construction across the Grand River in 1989. Numerous other relics were uncovered and are preserved but in storage, awaiting the time when enthusiasts can muster a display.

In neighboring Livingston County you can see the Milbank Mill at the corner of Washington and Bryan Streets in Chillicothe. This steam-powered mill was built in 1867. Four generations of Milbanks have owned it.

In Clay County, just north of Kansas City, two mills can be viewed. To see the Corbin Mill, take Interstate 35 to Liberty. The mill is at the corner of Mill and Water Streets. All the equipment has been removed from this mill, which has been converted into offices. Watkins Woolen Mill was built in 1860. This three-story, steam-powered woolen mill has all the textile milling equipment intact.

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources maintains the brick mill and the Greek Revival house nearby. The mill is on the National Register of Historic Places and is open for tours. Take Interstate 35 to Kearney, then take Route 92 east 6 miles to RA. Go north 1.1 mile. The mill is at the Watkins Woolen Mill State Historic Site. For more information, call 816-296-3357.

Yankee Smith Mill was built in 1978 by the Kansas City Parks Department on the Platte River. It is a reproduction of a mill built by Yankee Smith in 1825. Go 3 miles west of Liberty in the Shoal Creek Living History area of Robert Hodge Park. For more information, call 816-792-2655.

Although several mills across the state have been preserved, there are many more that have fallen victim to rot and decay. The following descriptions, the most recent available, are provided by the Society for the Preservation of Old Mills (SPOOM). The organization, which began in 1972, has 2,000 members worldwide. They are mill enthusiasts who gather for an annual reunion at a selected mill site. For more information about SPOOM, call 616-866-0609 or visit the web site at www.spoom.org. If you can update us on the status of any of these mills, please write to Missouri Life, 1504 County Road 421, Fayette, MO 65248.

Barry County
— Calton Mill: This non-operating turbine-powered mill looks like a two-story shed. Take Route 39 south at Aurora, 4 miles to Z, 5 miles west on W. south 4 miles to county bridge over Flat Creek, then right on gravel road at second curve.
— Roaring River: This is one of many mills that were built at this site over the years. Near the spring, the remains of an undershot wheel were discovered. From Cassville, take Route 112 to Roaring River State Park.

Bollinger County
— Dolle Mill: This non-operating turbine-powered mill is also known as Bollinger Mill because it is owned by the Bollinger family. The original equipment remains intact. Take Route 72 northwest to EE until it crosses Whitewater River, then take the first gravel road to the right.

Cape Girardeau County
— Bollinger Mill: George Frederick Bollinger led pioneers from North Carolina to the Ozarks. They settled along the Whitewater River and built a mill and dam in 1800. The mill made Bollinger a well-known figure, and he became a Missouri senator. After he died in 1842, his daughter operated the mill with the help of her sons. Union troops burned the mill during the Civil War. After the war, Solomon R. Burford bought the property. He rebuilt the mill, and the structure standing today was completed in 1867. Look closely, and you can see Solomon’s initials on a wall. The Cape County Milling Company operated the mill from 1897 to 1953. Then the mill was sold to George Bollinger’s distant relatives, who donated it to the Cape Girardeau County Historical Society. In 1967, the state took possession of the mill. The mill and the nearby covered bridge make this a popular site for tourists. Located near Jackson, the mill is open to the public. For more information, call 573-243-4591 or 800-334-6946.
— John’s Mill: Built in 1992, this mill is powered by an overshot wheel. Go 1/4 mile west of Gordonville on Stone Haven Lane.

Cedar County
— Caplinger Mills: Not much remains of these deteriorating mills. The flour mill has been washed away, but the foundation is still intact. The nearby power house was operated by a turbine, and this is also intact. Take Highway 54 to Route 39 to N east.

Christian County
— Ozark Mill: The original Ozark Mill is gone, but there is a diesel-powered feed mill near the city park. Take Highway 65 to Route 14. Mill is across the river from the park.

Clark County
— Thorne’s Mill: only the foundation remains of what was reported to have been a four-story woolen and roller mill. Take Route 81 near Athens to CC. Go to Battle of Athens State Historic Site.

Cole County
— Lohman Mill: There are actually two mills; one is a feed mill and the other is undergoing restoration. Go 6 miles west of Jefferson City on Highway 50 to St. Martins, then 5 miles south on D to Lohman.

Cooper County
— Dick’s Mill: This steam-powered mill has the roller mills and stones intact. Take Highway 50 to Tipton, then B north to AA. Go about 4 times and turn on the dirt road that comes immediately after a 90-degree curve. Go until you cross the bridge then continue to the mill.
— Rankin Mill: The equipment has been removed from this mill, and it is used as a storage shed. Take Boonville exit off Interstate 70. Go south on B to U, then go about 3 miles to bridge. The mill is nearby.

Crawford County
— Boubon Roller Mill: This mill has had the roller equipment removed, and there are silos attached to it. Interstate 44 to JJ. Exit at Bourbon, and the mill is in the town.
— Dillard Mill: This red mill stands at the junction of the Indian and Huzzah creeks. The current structure is the second mill to be built on the site. The first was Wisdom’s Mill, erected in the 1850’s. From 1881 to 1889, Joseph Dillard Cottrell and his brother, James, owned the mill. As the community grew, it became known as Dillard, named after Joseph. Andrew Jackson Mincher became the mill’s third owner in 1889. Six years later, the mill burned. Two Polish immigrants, Emil Mischke and his sister Mary, settled in the area in 1893 and bought the mill. In 1908, construction finished on the current mill. Lester E. Klemme bought the mill in 1930 and opened a lodge. He charged guests $7 a day for a cabin. After the mill closed in 1956, a foundation bought it and leased it to the Department of Natural Resources. Located near Dillard, the mill is open to the public. For more information, call 537-244-3120.

Dade County
— Hulston Mill: Built in 1840, this mill was moved to its current location because of development around the original site. The Dade County Historical Society maintains a small park around the mill. The Hulston Mill Heritage Festival takes place Oct. 2-3, and the mill will be open for free tours. Take Highway 160 east of Greenfield to EE. Go 2 miles north then go east for 1 mile on a gravel road. For more information, call 417-673-2524.

Dent County
— Lake Spring Mill: The rollers and steam engine for this mill have been removed, but other equipment remains intact. Take Route 72 about 14 miles south of Rolla to Lake Spring Mill is down an unmarked road.
— Montauk Mill: Montauk State Park’s seven streams add millions of gallons of water to the Current River each day. These springs also make the area the perfect site for a mill. Through the years, four different mills served the area, and the last one to be built still stands today. Constructed in 1896, the mill has most of the original machinery intact. The steel rollers were removed in 1942 for the war effort. The area around the mill became a state park in 1926 and quickly became one of Missouri’s most popular vacation spots known for fishing, camping, and canoeing. The mill, located in Montauk State Park near Salem, is open to the public. For more information, call 573-548-2201.

Douglas County
— Rockbridge Mill: At Rockbridge Mill and Spring Creek, soothing sounds of the cascading waterfall take your mind off daily worries, and it is easy to imagine earlier generations admiring the same peaceful view. The mill has been perched on the creek’s bank since 1868. A village quickly grew up around it, so B.V. Morris, the mill’s owner joined with John Edwards to open a bank in 1903. The village prospered for years, but as the need for the mill lessened, the community dwindled. Thirty years after opening the bank closed, followed by the mill’s closing in the late ’40’s. In 1954, the Amyx family bought the mill. Today, the area that was once home to villagers continues to teem with people. Ray Amyx maintains the mill as a historic attraction at his popular resort, Rainbow Trout and Game Ranch. Now, people gather by the mill during the day to socialize. Those in search of adventure can wade into the chilly water and try their luck at catching rainbow trout swimming near the waterfall. The clear-running water allows the fish to be seen by anglers. Mill admirers wanting the best angle for a photograph should also venture into the water because the opposite bank provides a better view of the red mill and its sloping roof. At night, the doors of the mill open to reveal a bar lit by lanterns hanging overhead. People can sit on the mill’s deck and enjoy drinks while watching the sun set behind the hillside. Those who can’t bear to leave the tranquil setting don’t have to; rooms are available for rent. The resort’s restaurant has also earned a reputation for tasty fish dinners, and the bank has been converted into an antique store. For more information or to make a reservation, call 417-673619.
— Topaz Mill: Built in 1895, this mill has been restored. Take Route 181 south from Cabool then go right on Route 76 and left on E. Follow E to a gravel road and keep to the right.

Franklin County
— Gerald Roller Mill: This steam-powered mill has been converted into a tavern. Take Highway 50 to Gerald Mill is next to the railroad tracks.
— Noser Mill: Built in 1852, the sone mill can be viewed from the old bridge over the Bourbuese River. Take Route 185 south to Beaufort to Old Noser Mill Road.
— Washington Mill: This is a two-story brick feed mill. Take Route 47 to East Fifth Street then to Market Street in Washington. Go right and follow street to the Missouri River. The mill is on the corner.
— Wolf Milling Company: The advertising sign is still visible on the front of the mill. Take Route 100 to New Haven and follow the signs to the business district. The mill is at the end of Front Street.

Gasconade County
— Bay Mill: This electric-powered mill is located by a large stone barn and a store. Take Highway 50 and WW then go 3 miles to Bay.
— Drake Mill: This two-story, steam-powered mill has had its equipment removed. The mill is across the street from a brick store, which is also worth a visit. The mill is at the intersection of Highway 50 and Route 19 at Drake.
— Star Milling Company: This large brick mill has an impressive appearance. Take Route 19 to Hermann. The mill is on Main Street two blocks east of the Missouri River bridge.
— Owensville Roller Mill: This mill has been converted into a restaurant and bar. Take Highway 19 to Red Oak. Go 1 mile to mill at Owensville.
— Red Bird Mill: This three-story wood-framed mill is used for storage. Out of St. James, take B north about 15 miles. Watch for Red Bird sign indicating a right turn. Mill is almost a mile down the gravel road.
— Rosebud Mill: This is a two-story brick mill. Take Highway 50 to Rosebud. The mill is at the east end of town next to railroad tracks.

Greene County
— Eisenmeyer Milling Company: This large mill has silos attached to it. Take Business Route 44 and National in Springfield.
— Hawkins Mill: The old mill has had additions built on, but the original structure is still apparent. At bypass 13 and Walnut in Springfield.
— Whinrey Mill: Built in the 1850’s this mill is behind a fence. To see from the road, go west of Springfield on 266 to F then 3 miles north to Farm Road 120 and 3/4 mile to Sac River. The mill near Halltown on a corner.
— Wommack Mill: This steam-powered sawmill was built in 1893 and is part of the National Register of Historic Places. From Interstate 44 at Springfield, take Highway 65 north to Route 125. Go east into Fair Grove Mill is in a park on the east side of Main Street.

Hickory County
— Weaubleau Mill: this mill has steel siding, and all equipment has been removed. Take Highway 54 to Weaubleau. Mill is on east edge of town.

Howell County
— Willow Springs Mill: The equipment has been removed from this mill. Take Business Route 60 in Willow Springs. The mill is next to railroad tracks.

Jackson County
— Waggoner-Gates Mill: This two-story brick mill now houses the National Frontier Center at 318 W. Pacific in Independence.

Jefferson County
— Cedar Hill Mill: This turbine-powered mill is best viewed from the park across the river. Take Route 30 to BB. The mill is at the southeast edge of Cedar Hill.

Johnson County
— Magnolia Mill: This wooden mill has concrete silos standing next to it. At the intersection of Washington and Pine streets in Warrensburg.

Laclede County
— Orla Mill: This mill has been converted to a residence and is not open to the public, but it is visible from the bridge over the creek. Take Route 5 south from Orla to C. Go until the end of the blacktop.

Lafayette County
— Higginsville Mill: This brick mill was built in 1849. Take Route 13 to Higginsville. The mill is on west side of business district.

Maries County
— Paydown Mill: The equipment has been removed from this mill. Take Route 42 10 miles east of Vienna.

Miller County
— Bray’s Mill: The overshot wheel to this mill is intact. Go 3 1/4 miles east of Iberia on Route 42. Mill is next to a gravel road to the left after crossing Kenser Creek bridge.
— St. Elizabeth Mill: This feed mill features modern elevators. Take Route 52 to east edge of St. Elizabeth. Mill is on south side of the road.

Moniteau County
— Star Roller Mill: This red brick mill is now a feed mill. Take Highway 50 to California. Mill is next to railroad tracks.

Morgan County
— Stover Mill: Original mill is now part of a feed mill. on Route 52 in Stover.

Newton County
— Jolly Mill: This mill earned its name because it was once a distillery, and Jolly is short for jollification. A town named jollification sprouted up around the mill, which was built by slave labor in 1848. It is part of the National Register of Historic Places. Take Highway 60 west from Monett. Go 7 miles then turn south on Road 2020. Go 2 miles. The mill is located near the bridge.

Oregon County
— Falling Spring Mill: This is a small one-story mill. Take Route 19 north of Greer for 7 miles. Turn onto Forest Service Road 3170 and follow the left fork. Go 10 miles down the gravel road to the mill.

Osage County
— Bonnots Mill: on the National Register of Historic Places, this mill is located in a town of the same name. Take Highway 50 to Loose Creek then go north on A for 6 miles to the town. Mill is next to railroad tracks.
— Hope Mill: This stone mill has had its equipment removed. Take Highway 50 to N and go 7 miles to Hope.
— Westphalia Mill: This mill operated until 1948. It has been converted to a feed mill and is on Highway 63 on the side of a hill near Westphalia.

Ozark County
— Hodgson Mill: This turbine-powered mill has been renovated and opened for tourist visits. It is visible from a pull-off area along the road. The combination of the red mill tucked up against the hillside and the clear tumbling waterfall in front of it makes a picturesque scene. The mill overlooks the Bryant River, so visitors can stick their hands in and feel the frigid water. The first mill to stand at this site was built around 1870. Alva Hodgson bought the mill in 1884, and it is named after him. The mill changed ownership through the years until C.T. Aid purchased it in the early 1930’s. Then called the Aid-Hodgson Mill, it remained in the Aid family until 1998 when it was sold to a man wanting to restore it. He died recently, and now the mill faces an uncertain future.
— Dawt Mill: Built in 1887 by Alva Hodgson, this mill continues to serve as a center of activity. The mill is at the heart of a resort area that includes campsites and a general store. The mill burned in 1896, but it was rebuilt a year later and has been kept in working condition for more than 100 years. Don’t let the water wheel next to the mill fool you; it is only for looks. A turbine powered by the North Fork River ran the mill. on the mill’s porch are a cluster of antiques next to a bench that invites visitors to rest a spell. Inside the mill, most of the equipment is intact. But the machinery shares space with a gift shop that sells an assortment of wares from T-shirts to jelly. Cinnamon rolls, cookies, and bread are baked in a kitchen in the mill and provide the rustic structure with an unexpected sweet scent. Near the mill is the old general store where nature-lovers can reserve camping sites or sign up for canoe or tubing strips down the North Fork River. Water enthusiasts are dropped off upriver from the mill, so they can float down to the Dawt site where the trip ends. For travelers who aren’t in a hurry, a walk onto the concrete bridge provides a prime spot for watching the waterfall. From this location, the mill also appears more impressive as it looms high on the hill. For more information or to make reservation, call 417-284-3540.
— Hammond Mill: A tornado blew the roof off while it was in the midst of being restored. Now the mill is deteriorating. From Gainsville, go north on Route 5 to Z. Go left on Z to gravel road and turn left. Cross the concrete bridge to the mill, which is about 14 miles from Route 5.
— Zanoni Mill: Ozark County’s only surviving mill with an overshot water wheel is backed up to a rocky hillside. Spring water pours out of these hills into a wooden flume, which funneled the water over the wheel. A.P. Morrison owned the mill and the nearby general store, which housed the post office. A.P. was a storekeeper who also served as a county commissioner. His grandson, Dave, says he can remember hearing stories about square dances being held in the mill and a sewing factory operating on the second floor. “It was quite a little village in the wagon days,” Dave says. The mill shut down in 1951, and A.P. died on 1969. A St. Louis man owned the mill and the surrounding land for a few years later, they began building the colonial home that sits in front of the original farmhouse. After their children went to college, the couple decided to open their large home to others. Taking its name from the mill, the Zanoni Mill Inn attracts visitors from across the country. In front of the mill is a lake fed by Zanoni Spring. Guests can take leisurely rides in paddle boats or fish form the banks. “I’ve always liked this place,” Dave says. “It is home to me, and it has a lot of historical interest to many people.” For more information or to make reservations, call (417) 679-4050.

Pettis County
— Sedalia Milling Company: A renovation revealed the name “Sedalia Milling company” on the mill’s exterior. Take Highway 50 to the intersection of Moniteau and Main streets in Sedalia.

Phelps County
— Maramec Spring: This mill has the first iron works in the state, and the forge is still intact. Take Route 8 about 7 miles south of St. James.

Reynolds County
— Reed Spring Mill: This one-story mill is a reproduction of one that was moved to the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. Take Route 21 to Centerville then take Pine Street about half a mile to the mill.

St. Charles County
— Blair Milling Company: This is a feed mill. At junction of D and Z on Mill Street in New Melle.
— Blanchette-Chouteau Mill: Lewis and Clark departed for their expedition from the creek by the mill. This brick mill was once a grist mill and then a woolen mill. It has been renovated and now houses the Trailhead Brewing Company. Take Interstate 70 to St. Charles. Mill is at 921 Main St.
— Borgmann Mill: This two-story mill is the only remaining animal-powered one on the state. Mill is part of the National Register of Historic Places. Take County Road D 5 miles east of Marthasville. Follow signs to Daniel Boone Home, and mill is 1 mile west on Route 94.

St. Francois County
— Farmington Mill: This one-story brick feed mill has had additions. Off Route 32 at Farmington.

Ste. Genevieve County
— Brickey’s Mill: This stone mill now houses the Mill Antique Mart. Take Interstate 55 to Highway 32 exit. The mill is northeast of downtown next to the railroad tracks.

St. Louis County
— Coulter Mill: This brick mill retains its original appearance. Take interstate 270 to Kirkwood. Mill is in town.

Shannon County
— Alley Spring Mill: A paved path winding from the parking lot leads you to this red mill nestled among trees in the Ozark National Scenic Riverways. Alley Spring Mill and the clear blue spring that gives it its name make such a stunning combination that numerous brides chose the site for their weddings. Construction of the three-story mill began in 1893 by George McCaskill. The original mill was painted white. The mill operated until the Missouri Park Board purchased it in 1924. Much to the dislike of local residents, the mill was painted red in 1940. In 1953, the mill reopened to grind cornmeal. The Alley Spring area became part of the Ozark National Scenic Riverways in 1970. Inside the mill is the original machinery, which provides a close-up look at how grinding was done. Beneath the mill’s back steps is the original turbine. Take time to walk the looping trail behind the mill because it offers a better view of the spring. Located five miles west of Eminence, the mill is open to the public. For more information, call 573-323-4236.
— Klepzig Mill: This turbine-powered mill was built in 1912. The National Park Service owns it, and it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors should not enter the structure because it is dangerous. Mill is also difficult to reach because road is rough. Take Route 106 east to H. Go south on H to NN and follow it to end of blacktop. Take first left and go 1 mile. Mill is on right but is hard to see.
— Fleetwood Mills: Grist mills and sawmills have recently been constructed. This is a private project, so contact owner at 573-226-3643 before visiting. Take Route 106 west about half a mile to Harvey’s Campground. Go right for 100 feet, then turn left.

Stone County
— Spring Creek Mill: This mill stopped operating in 1955 but is being restored. Mill is 2 miles north of Crane on Highway 265 then 4 miles east on A.

Taney County
— Edwards Mill: This mill was built in 1971. Students of the College of the Ozarks operate it. Take Highway 65 south of Branson to the College of the Ozarks in Point Lookout. For more information, call 417-334-6411.
— Shepherd of the Hills Mill: This is part of a Branson attraction. Take Highway 76 about 4 miles west of Branson.
— Sullivan Mill: This reproduction of an 1880’s flour mill is powered by an overshot wheel. Take Highway 76 west of Branson to Silver Dollar City.

Texas County
— Houston Mill: This is a two-story feed mill. Take Highway 63 in Houston. Mill is on Main Street.
— White Dove Mill: This mill was powered by steam. At intersection of Highway 63 and Route 32 in Licking.

Vernon County
— Producers Union Mill: This mill has tin siding. Take Route 54 to Walnut on east edge of Nevada.

Warren County— Holstein Mill: Built in 1871, this is now a feed mill. Take Route 94 to Treloar. Take N 1 mile northeast to Holstein. Go a half mile down Mill Street, and mill is on the right.

Washington County
— Farrell Feed Mill: The original mill has had additions. on east edge of Belgrade next to a cemetery.

Wayne County
— Markum Springs Mill: This mill is powered by an overshot wheel. Take Highway 49 north of Williamsville. Exit at Markum Springs.

Source: MissouriLife, October/November 1999

Milling Around Missouri — 4 of the Best

During their heyday in the mid-1800’s to early 1900’s, Missouri’s mills not only reduced much needed four but they also brought farm families together for a few days of camaraderie.

During their heyday in the mid-1800’s to early 1900’s, Missouri’s mills not only reduced much needed four but they also brought farm families together for a few days of camaraderie.

The wait to have grain ground could be several days, so farmers and their families camped around the mill. The men gathered in groups to swap stories, the women busied themselves with cooking and catching up with friends, and the children romped across the countryside with newfound playmates. There were dances, bonfires, and much merriment.

But the mills shut down as railroads improved the transportation of goods. No longer did stores need to rely on the local mills to stock their shelves; bigger mills could produce larger quantities of goods and send them by rail across the country.

Missouri’s mills, which once symbolized thriving communities, fell into disrepair. Many burned during the Civil War and were never rebuilt. Others were destroyed by vandals or washed away in floods.

But not all of the mills have vanished. Many of the surviving ones ore scattered across the state, and our guide to 79 mills will help you locate ones near you.

In southwestern Missouri, there is a cluster of four mills, all in good condition, that can be visited in a day’s drive. Located in the scenic ozark area, the following four mills provide a delightful destination for fall travelers.


ROCKBRIDGE MILL

At Rockbridge Mill and Spring Creek , soothing sounds of the cascading waterfall take your mind off daily worries, and it is easy to imagine earlier generations admiring the same peaceful view.

The mill has been perched on the creek’s bank since 1868. A village quickly grew up around it, so B.V. Morris, the mill’s owner. Joined with John Edwards to open a bank in 1903. The village prospered for years, but as the need for the mill lessened, the community dwindled. Thirty years after opening, the bank closed, followed by the mill’s closing in the late ’40’s.

In 1954, the Amyx family bought the mill, Today, the area that was once home to villagers continues to teem with people Ray Amyx maintains the mill as a historic attraction at his popular resort, Rainbow Trout and Game Ranch.

Now, people gather by the mill during the day to socialize. Those in search of adventure can wade into the chilly water and try their luck at catching rainbow trout swimming near the waterfall. The clear-running water allows the fish to be seen by anglers. Mill admirers wanting the best angle for a photograph should also venture into the water because the opposite bank provides a better view of the red mill and its sloping roof.

At night, the doors of the mill open to reveal a bar lit by lanterns hanging overhead. People can sit on the mill’s deck and enjoy drinks while watching the sun set behind the hillside.

Those who can’t bear to leave the tranquil setting don’t have to; rooms are available for rent. The resort’s restaurant has also earned a reputation for tasty fish dinners, and the bank has been converted into an antique store. For more information or make reservation, call (417)679-3619.

ZANONI MILL

Ozark County’s only surviving mill with an overshot water wheel is backed up to a rocky hillside. Spring water pours out of these hills into a wooden flume, which funneled the water over the wheel.

A.P. Morrison owned the mill and the nearby general store, which housed the post office. A.P. was a storekeeper who also served as a county commissioner. His grandson, Dave, says he can remember hearing stories about square dances being held in the mill and a sewing factory operating on the second floor. “It was quite a little village in the wagon days,” Dave says.

The mill shut down in 1951, and A.P. died on 1969. A St. Louis man owned the mill and the surrounding land for a few years later, they began building the colonial home that sits in front of the original farmhouse. After their children went to college, the couple decided to open their large home to others. Taking its name from the mill, the Zanoni Mill Inn attracts visitors from across the country.

In front of the mill is a lake fed by Zanoni Spring. Guests can take leisurely rides in paddle boats or fish form the banks.

“I’ve always liked this place,” Dave says. “It is home to me, and it has a lot of historical interest to many people.” For more information or to make reservations, call (417) 679-4050.


HODGSON MILL

To keep this mill form being disturbed, visitors aren’t allowed on the property. But don'[t let the fence or the “No Trespassing” signs keep you from admiring the mill from afar. Luckily, this turbine-powered mill is visible from a pull-off area along the road, and a peek at this structure is well worth a few minutes of your time.

The combination of the red mill tucked up against the hillside and the clear tumbling waterfall in front of it makes a picturesque scene.. The mill overlooks the Bryant River, so visitors can stick their hands in and feel the frigid water.

The first mill to stand at this site was built around 1870. Alva Hodgson bought the mill in 1884, and it is named after him.

The mill changed ownership through the years until C.T. Aid purchased it in the early 1930’s. Then called the Aid-Hodgson Mill, it remained in the Aid family until 1998 when it was sold to a man wanting to restore it. He died recently, and now the mill faces an uncertain future.


DAWT MILL

Built in 1887 by Alva Hodgson, this mill continues to serve as a center of activity. The mill is at the heart of a resort area that includes campsites and a general store.

The mill burned in 1896, but it was rebuilt a year later and has been kept in working condition for more than 100 years.

Don’t let the water wheel next to the mill fool you; it is only for looks. A turbine powered by the North Fork River ran the mill.

On the mill’s porch are a cluster of antiques next to a bench that invites visitors to rest a spell. Inside the mill, most of the equipment is intact. But the machinery shares space with a gift shop that sells an assortment of wares from T-shirts to jelly. Cinnamon rolls, cookies, and bread are baked in a kitchen in the mill and provide the rustic structure with an unexpected sweet scent.

Near the mill is the old general store where nature-lovers can reserve camping sites or sign up for canoe or tubing strips down the North Fork River. Water enthusiasts are dropped off upriver from the mill, so they can float down to the Dawt site where the trip ends.

For travelers who aren’t in a hurry, a walk onto the concrete bridge provides a prime spot for watching the waterfall. From this location, the mill also appears more impressive as it looms high on the hill.

— by Renee Martin Kratzer, MissouriLife, October/November 1999

Lewis & Clark Expedition touches Daviess County

Evidence of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, surprisingly, can be traced today to Gallatin, the county seat of Daviess County in northwest Missouri. Two original hand-written survey books — written and signed by the nephew of the famous explorer and who was Surveyor General of the United States — belong to Daviess County. Copies of this survey are still in use and experts today still find them uncannily correct!

Evidence of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, surprisingly, can be traced today to Gallatin, the county seat of Daviess County in northwest Missouri. Two original hand-written survey books — written and signed by the nephew of the famous explorer and who was Surveyor General of the United States — belong to Daviess County. Copies of this survey are still in use and experts today still find them uncannily correct!

The Untied States purchased the Louisana Territory from France in 1803 during the presidency of Thomas Jefferson. All of Missouri was originally part of the Louisiana Puchase, bought from France for 3 cents an acre.

The President wanted to send an expedition to explore the area even before it became part of the United States. Jefferson wanted to know what the land contained and how it might best be used to benefit the young country, then less than 30 years old. He wanted to know whether the land was suitable for farming, what resources and people were in it, and especially whether there was a water route across it to the Pacific Ocean.

Jefferson had a scientific mind and was especially interesetd in things like teh geography, climate, animals, and plants of this largely undocumented region. he chose his secretary, Meriwether Lewis, to lead the expedition. Lewis chose William Clark to share the leadership duties.

The Lewis and Clark expedition to the Pacific both began and ended near St. Louis. The voyage was preceded by months of planning and preparation in Washington, D.C., Harper’s Ferry, Est Virginia, Pittsburgh, Louisville, and other places, but the real departure point was Wood River, IL, across the mouth of the Missouri River just above St. Louis on May 14, 1804. They took about 10 weeks to go through what is now the state of Missouri.

They saw few Indians as they went west in Missouri except for some Kickapoos they had engaged to hunt for the expedition, and Indians with Franco-American traders they met coming down the river. Visits from Indians were more common after they go north of St. Joseph. Evidence of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, surprisingly, can be traced today to Gallatin, the county seat of Daviess County in northwest Missouri. In 2003, amid many celebration observances of the Expedition held nationwide, officials from the MIssouri State Secretary of the State Archive Office reviewed and authenticated two books belong to Daviess County. They are original hand-written survey books, written and signed by Meriwether Lewis Clark, who was a nephew of the famous explorers and the Surveyor General of the United States. President Jefferson sent him alnog behind his uncles to survey the land; Daviess County was part of his survey.

These books were professionally appraised and preserved and returned to Daviess County. Copies of this survey are still being used by surveyors today, and the records — now over 200 years old — are uncannily correct. Meriwether Lewis Clark literally surveyed the land with rods and lengths of chain, correct to within inches of what surveyors say today using all of their sophisticated equipment. His work was especially important when Daviess County organized in 1836. In fact, our system of land measurement used throughout the entire United States today also came from Thomas Jefferson.

Lewis and Clark were not only among the first Anglo-Americans to explore a large section of the United States but theykept journals and documented what they saw, and they brought back specimens. This makes their project much more than an adventure story. It provides a basis of factual scientific information. They identified 122 animals and 178 plants previously unknown to Anglo-Americans, and provided niformation on the Indian tribes they met. They weren’t the first to see the interesting and magnificent sights;the Indians had seen them for thousands of years. But Lewis and Clark (and some of their crew members) produced detailed journals of what they saw.

The Expedition arrived back at the northern border of Missouri on Sept. 9, 1806, and landed at St. Louis on Sept. 23, 1806. Their journals record several stops within Missouri. There have been no archaelogical excavations of sites used by Louis and Clark in Missouri. The combination of many of their camps being of short duration and being on low ground have left no known evidence of their camps. However, they played a major role in the settlement of Missouri and the West. Three counties in Missouri — Lewis, Clark and Shannon — are named for expedition members.

 

JEFFERSON’S INVOLVEMENT IN THE PUBLIC LAND SYSTEM

Thomas Jefferson was involved in the creation of the public land measurement system that was first developed in 1775. Land descriptions that we use today are possible because of the rectangular measurement system that Jefferson’s committee envisioned, promulgated, and then put into use. Although Jefferson is more widely known as the third President of the United States — for his stature, accomplishments, wisdom and foresight — he also headed the committee that invented our rectangular land measurement system.

This measurement system went through a 21-year trial and error period, mainly in Ohio. The system was found workable and adopted as teh official U.S. land measurement system in 1805.

The system has two main divisions. Townships are divided into 6 miles square. Sections are made from the townships. Each section is one mile square. Sections are numbered from 1 through 36, starting in the northeast corner. The numbers follow in order across to the west and then follow back and forth east to west, west to east, until number 36 is found in the most southeastern corner.

This measurement system provides for legal descriptions of land, allow anyone to locate a specific land on a map. Legal decriptions are important, since addresses or other types of identification can chagne over time. The county recorder’s office can provide you with the history of the land.

“Trail of Death” — Potawatomi Indian Relocation

Armed conflict between Mormons and Missourians was not the only tragedies recorded in the frontier region of Northwest Missouri during 1838. Today a plaque dedicated on the original campsite in Richmond, MO, is a reminder of the “Trail of Death” march from Indiana to Osawatomi, KS, forced upon the Potawatomi Indians. (reprinted from the Lawson Review)

Armed conflict between Mormons and Missourians was not the only tragedies recorded in the frontier region of Northwest Missouri during 1838. Today a plaque dedicated on the original campsite in Richmond, MO, is a reminder of the “Trail of Death” march from Indiana to Osawatomi, KS, forced upon the Potawatomi Indians. (reprinted from the Lawson Review)

The “Trail of Death” started in 1838 when 850 Potawatomi Indians were rounded up and marched at gun opint from their Indiana homeland. Many walked the 660 miles from Twin Lakes, IN, to Osawatomie, KS, a journey that took two months. More than 40 died, mostly children, of typhoid fever and from the stress of the forced march.

The trek involved 48 stops where the march halted to camp for one night or more, according to the official journal kept by a government agent. Eight stops were made in the journey across North Missouri — at Palmyra, Paris, Huntsville, Keytesville, Carrollton, Richmond, Lexington and Independence.

The campsite at Richmond was on the grounds of what is now the Richmond High School at the junction of Hwy 13 and Hwy 24, formerly known as the Snowden Farm. It is currently marked by a large rock bearing the plaque, just across the street from a McDonald’s restuarant. The original marker was a project of Eagle Scout Joe Davis, who acquired the funds and established the marker. The Friends of the Ray County Museum supported this historic preservation project and complted the fundraising effort for the marker with their donation.