In 1824 there were only three townships, namely: Coles Grove, Atlas and Franklin, while in 1900 the county has sixteen full congressional and eight fractional townships. In 1847 a State election was held for members of the Constitutional Convention, which Convention prepared and submitted to the people a new Constitution, which was adopted by a large majority. By this Constitution, in place of the Commissioners’ Court a County Court was organized in each county. This court consisted of a county judge, and, if the Legislature saw proper to so order it, two associate justices. This the Legislature favorably acted upon. The last meeting of the County Commissioners Court was held November, 1849. After the transaction of such business as properly came before them, they adjourned until court in course, but never re-assembled.
On the first Monday of December of the same year the first regular term of the County Court was held. The duties of the court in a legislative capacity were precisely the same as those of the County Commissioners’ Court. In addition to the legislative power the members of this court were permitted to exercise judicial authority, haying all the rights and privileges of justices of the peace, together with all probate business. This court consisted of a county judge and two associate justices. The judge and associate justices acted together for the transaction of all county business, but none other. The justices had an equal vote with the judge, and received the same salary while holding court, which was $2 per day. Two of the three constituted a quorum.
The county judge who served under this regime was James Ward. The associate justices were Joshua Woosley and William P. Harpole. The Constitution of 1847 provided for township organization in those counties desiring it. (Hons. William R. Archer and William A. Grimshaw, both of this county, were members. of the convention framing this constitution.) The question of organizing according to this provision soon began, of course, to agitate the people of Pike county, and the controversy grew bitter,—the bitterest indeed that this more than usually peaceful community ever indulged in. Immigrants from the East were familiar with the workings of township legislation and management, and desired to perpetuate their home institution in the West; but the other citizens of the county were afraid that the introduction of the measure would necessitate an increase of office holders, useless expenses and many unforeseen vexations. The judges in office were all opposed to the innovation, —so much so indeed that they continued to hold court even after the great victory of the innovators in carrying thecounty by 1,563 votes against 317, and the election of new members. For a short time the county had two legislatures at once. The vote was taken at the general election of November 6, 1849, at which election Peter V. Shankland was elected county clerk on this hotly contested issue, and Stephen R. Gray sheriff. Both these gentlemen were Democrats, in favor of township organization. Indeed, as a matter of curiosity, but of no political significance, we may state that the fight on both sides was nearly all done by the Democrats, the Whigs taking but little part.
An election was held in November, 1849, to vote “for” or “against” township organization, which resulted in favor of the measure. This was met with bitter opposition, however, and an appeal was taken to the Circuit Court by Samuel L. Crane. The law was decided to be constitutional, and the election a fair one. The Board of Supervisors of Pike county first assembled April 8, 1850, this being one of the first counties in the State to organize under the township mode.
There were present at this meeting the following members: Montgomery Blair, Barry; Hazen Pressy, Washington; Archibald Brooks, Chambersburg; David Preble, Salem; Wilson Adams, Hardin; William Ross, Newburg; Thomas Hull, Kinderhook; A. W. Bemis, Martinsburg; R. C. Robertson, Milton; James M. Seeley, Atlas, and John McTucker, Hadley. Supervisor Blair was elected temporary chairman and Colonel Ross chosen chairman. The board then adjourned to reassemble April 23, 1850. There were present at this second meeting the following gentlemen: William Ross; Archibald Brooks; Darius Dexter, Perry; Amos Hill, Griggsville; David Preble; John McTucker; Montgomery Blair; Jesse Seniff, Detroit; Thomas Hull; A. W. Bemis; J. M. Seeley; J. T. Hyde, Pittsfield; R. C. Robertson; Wilson Adams; Hazen Pressy; and James Talbot, Pleasant Vale.
Chambersburg, Flint, Detroit, Montezuma, Pearl, Levee, Cincinnati and Ross are fractional townships, while Atlas has eighteen full sections and seven fractional sections on her western border.
CHAMBERSBURG. This township lies in the extreme northeastern part of the county. The first pioneers who came to this township were James Wells, Samuel Atchison, a Mr. Brewster and a Mr. Van Woy. They came in 1822. The first sermon preached in the township was in 1827. The town was laid out May 7, 1833, by Sebourn Gilmore. It is situated under a high bluff on the edge of the Illinois river bottom and is surrounded by some good farming country. The town is a small one but filled with good and enterprising citizens.
FLINT. This is the smallest township in the county and was the first one settled, in 1817. A Frenchman by the name of Teboe was the first settler. Garrett Van Deusen was the next settler. He established a ferry at what is known as Phillipsburg, now Griggsville Landing or Valley City. Flint has a fine magnesia spring in the southeastern portion of the township. Valley City is the only town in the township and is on the Wabash Railroad.
DETROIT. Detroit township was settled by Lewis Allen in 1823. The pioneers had many encounters with wild animals during the early settlement. Detroit has two towns, Florence being the oldest and laid out in 1836 by the Florence Company, composed principally of Pittsfield business men, among whom were Austin Barber, William Ross, Robert R. Green and Thomas Worthington. In the old Illinois Gazeteer, Florence was known by the name of Augusta. Florence has the honor of being the place where nearly one thousand men of Pike county’s bravest and best were mustered into the United States service in 1862 and afterward known as the Ninety-ninth or Pike County Regiment of Volunteers. Detroit village was founded in 1837 by Peter H. Lucas, and is surrounded by beautiful farming country and its people are among Pike county’s best.
MONTEZUMA. The first settlers of Montezuma township were Ebenezer Franklin, who came in 1819; Charles Adams, James Daniels, David Daniels, David and Daniel Hoover, Joel Meacham, Thomas Davis, who came in 1826. Like all settlers of new countries they suffered many hardships and inconveniences. The nearest mill for the first few years was at Edwardsville, Madison County, eighty miles away. At that time there were about 200 Indians in the neighborhood. A Dr. Houston was the first physician. Polly Davis was the first school teacher. In addition to the care of the neighbors children she had eight of her own. The first marriage was that of Joseph Gale and Elizabeth Garrison in 1830. There are three villages in this township, Milton, Montezuma and Bedford. The township is a most excellent agricultural one and has some of the best and most enterprising farmers.
PEARL. Pearl’s first settlers came in 1824 or 1825 and were A. Perkins, J. R. Ottwell, William Pruett and John Ottwell. The first marriage was William Ottwell and Rachel Collins and they were united by Rev. Mr. Osborne, a Baptist minister, who preached the first sermon in the township in 1829. Pearl has the villages of Pearl, Bee Creek Village, Bee Creek Mills, Pearl Station and Chow Row. Near old Pearl is one of the finest springs in Illniois. In the old times an old-fashioned undershot watermill was run by the immense volume of water flowing from the spring. What is known as the new town of Pearl is situated on the Chicago & Alton Railroad and is a place of considerable business.
PERRY. Perry is one of the first class townships situated in the northeast part of the county. The first settlers came in about 1829 and were Joseph Cavander, John Hume, Abel Shelley. John Matthews, Mr. Loveladv and John Gillaspie. The first school taught in the township was in 1830 by John Cavander. The town of Perry, numbering about 700, was laid out by Joseph S. King in 1836 and first christened Booneville in honor of Daniel Boone. The name was afterward changed to Perry in honor of Commodore Perry, the hero of Lake Erie, who said “We have met the enemy and they are ours.” Perry has a bank and, a newspaper and while an inland town with no railroads is an enterprising, energetic and progressive town. This township also has the famous Perry Springs, which are called magnesia, iron and sulphur springs, but of late years seem to have lost their prestige as a health resort.
GRIGGSVILLE. Griggsville is one of the most important and wealthy townships in the county. It has the distinctive honor of being the only town of that name in the United States. The township was settled as early as 1825 by Henry Bateman. The first birth in the township was a son of Mr. Bateman and the first to die was Mr. Bateman’s wife. The city of Griggsville was laid out in 1833 by Joshua Stanford and Richard Griggs and was named Griggsville by Mr. Tones in honor of Mr. Griggs. In 1838 there was what was known as an abolition melee in Griggsville caused over a democratic and whig election for constable. They had a red hot and bitter contest which resulted in the election of B. S. Coffey. The democrats were very hostile over the election and a democrat assaulted Coffey, which caused a general row with no one seriously hurt. A few weeks later a gentleman visited at Griggsville holding anti-slavery meetings and asking people to petition congress to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia. Quite a number signed his petition. The objectors met in a saloon and passed resolutions that the parties who had signed the petition should be compelled to erase their signatures from it. The mob element took the papers away from the man and returned with them, called upon the signers and demanded that they immediately erase their names under the penalty of violence should they refuse. Some complied, others did not. They then notified the obstinate ones that they must erase their names. The good people of the town met in a hotel and organized for resistance. The mob came with a rope and threw it around the body of N. W. Jones and attempted to drag him out and hang him, but he escaped from them and the good citizens soon showed what metal they were made of and the mob soon found it the best policy to desist from their murderous intention. Griggsville has two banks and two newspapers and all kinds of business is fully represented in the town. The early settlers knew what privations were. In 1834 tea, coffee or sugar could not be bought. They had maple sugar and corn or rye coffee and sassafras tea. Griggsville has a very successful fair and is now the only fair held in the county. They have perhaps the most commodious fair grounds of any county in the state and being in the racing circuit, the lovers of equine speed have great enjoyment in witnessing the trials on the track.
NEWBURG. The first settler in Newbürg was Daniel Husong in 1833. Newburg is so closely identified with Pittsfield that it has no town of its own but is noted as a most excellent agricultural township.
HARDIN. The first settlers in Hardin were Benjamin Barney, Nathaniel Bagby, Solomon Main, Jacob Henry, Joseph Halford, Jesse Mason and Aaron Thornton. The first couple married was Nathaniel Thornton and Lucinda Bagby, the ceremony being performed by Rev. Lewis Allen. The first school was taught by Jesse Garrison in 1833. Time, a very pleasant little, village, is located in this township. Its population now is about one hundred and fifty, and being an inland town, its future is not very bright. It has many good citizens and is an excellent farming community.
SPRING CREEK. Spring Creek is one of the southern tier of townships bounded on the south by Calhoun county. It was settled in 1832 by Silas Wilson. The surface is very broken and is not a very good agricultural township. Nebo is its principal town and has about six hundred people. It has a bank and a newspaper and is located on the Chicago & Alton Railroad and is known as a good business town.
FAIRMOUNT. Fairmount is one of the finest townships on the north side of the county. Its first settlement was abbut 1831. The township is an excellent one for farm and stock operations and her citizens are among the best of the county. In 1840 Henry Benson taught the first school on section 16, in a log school house. In the time of the Civil war Fairmount’s patriotic blood was aroused and she sent her quota of her gallant boys in blue to do or die for home and country.
NEW SALEM. The first pioneer who ventured to locate in this township was Mr. Joab Shinn, who came in 1830. In 1831 came Isaac Conklin and his two sons, William Scholl and Nathan Swigert. The first school house built in New Salem was in 1834. New Salem has two enterprising towns, Baylis and New Salem. New Salem was laid out in 1847 and Baylis in 1869. Baylis has a bank and a newspaper. Both towns have enterprising business men and have the benefits of the Wabash Railroad. A noted resident of New Salem township from 1833 until his death a few years ago, was Capt. Henry Browne, who was born in Ireland, highly educated and aristocratic, a quiet and useful man, always held his allegiance to Great Britian. He. was a skilled physician, and was a true friend to the poor; and was never known to take a cent for services or medicines. He was noted for his high sense of honor, and marked respect for the rights of others.
PITTSFIELD. Pittsfield is near the center of the county and is the county capital. The pioneer who first located here was Joel Moore, next came Ephraim Cannon and Moses Riggs. The county seat was located at Pittsfield by Commissioners George W. Hinman, Hawkins Judd and Benjamin Barney. The first sale of lots took place May 15, 1833. The town was recorded May 14, 1833. The first court house was built in 1833, and the second one in 1838, and the present structure in 1894-5, is a handsome temple of justice and perhaps in its appointments and finish will compare favorably with any in the State. The town has three newspapers, two banks and the largest flouring mill in the western part of the state; has eight churches and two large school buildings. Among the famous people who began their careers in Pittsfield were Milton Hay; John Hay, who in his lifetime was recognized as one of America’s greatest diplomats; John G. Nickolay, private secretary to President Lincoln. Pittsfield’s citizens that are sojourning on the Pacific coast and in the West are very numerous, and most of them are making fame and fortunes for themselves. Pittsfield has several good hotels and a very commodious opera house. In secret societies, she has the Masons, blue lodge, chapter and commandery; Odd Fellows; Knights of Pythias; Woodmen; Mutual Protective League; Pike County Mutual; Grand Army of the Republic, and numerous others.
MARTINSBURG. This township is situated in the second tier above the Calhoun county line, and its southwest corner is within five miles of the Mississippi river. Fisher Petty was the first settler and came in 1825. It has two villages, Martinsburg and New Hartford; both towns are occupied by good quiet citizens, and for little villages do their share of the business. Neither have railroad facilities, which rather militates against their business.
PLEASANT HILL. This township was first settled in 1821 by Belus and Egbert Jones. Pleasant Hill’s southern boundary touches Calhoun county. It has the Chicago & Alton Railroad, a bank and a newspaper. It has a number of progressive business men and a population of about 450. The town of Pleasant Hill was laid out in 1836, and was incorporated in 1869. Pleasant Hill had the first license from the county commissioners court in 1821 to keep a tavern and sell liquor. The first sermon was preached by Rev. Stephen Ruddle in 1826, who had been a prisoner held by the Indians for sixteen years. The man’s ability and knowledge was such that almost every person in the entire township turned out to hear him preach. The first schoolhouse was erected in 1832.
HADLEY. Hadley is a fine township of land, perhaps one of the best in the military tract. The first settler in this township was a black man who was known as Free Frank, and who came from Kentucky in 1829. The Legislature gave him a name, and he was afterward known as Frank McWorter. The first white settler to locate in this township was Joshua Woosley, who was afterward sheriff of the county. Mr. Woolsey used the first grain cradle superseding the old-fashioned sickle; and it was such a curiosity that the settlers came from far and near to see it. He charged a bushel of wheat per acre for cutting with it, which was a very small price, being only about thirty-seven and a half cents.
DERRY. Derry is a splendid farming township. It was first settled by David W. Howard in 1826. Derry has one town, founded in 1836 by Nathaniel Winters and named Washington. In 1850, when township organization took effect, it was found there was another Washington in Tazewell county, and the postmaster general notified them they should change their name, which was afterward changed to Eldara. The town has about two hundred and fifty population and several thoroughgoing business men, two churches and an excellent school building.
ATLAS. When we reach this name we are carried back to the day when Atlas was expected to be a great city. It is located in a fertile valley, with upland and bottom land, good and productive. The first settlers were the Ross family; Ebenezer, Franklin and Daniel Shinn. Many of the early settlers of Atlas went to other parts of the county, and John Wood went to Quincy and founded the now “Gem City.” Atlas township has three towns, Atlas, Rockport and Summer Hill, filled with many of Pike county’s best people. Rockport, on the railroad, has a fine elevator and several good business houses. In Atlas town there is yet standing a house that was erected in 1822. To a person visiting Atlas for the first time, seeing the beautiful landscape and surroundings, would be impressed that Colonel Ross was evidently much elated with his great expectations that Quincy would not make much of a town because it was too near Atlas.
ROSS. Ross township was formed from Atlas township in 1879 and was named in honor of Colonel William Ross by Captain M. D. Massie, who was a member of the board of supervisors in that year. The township is fractional and has no particular history except for its productive farms and worth agricultural citizens.
BARRY. The first settlers in Barry, in 1824, were Rev. David Edwards and Mr. Hadley. Soon after these men came Rev. William M. Blair and his sons. Those who afterward took an important part in the history of the township were Montgomery and William Blair, Hezekiah McAtee, Alfred Grubb and Elijah L. McAtee. Other early settlers were Josiah and William Lippencott, Stephen R. Gray, Burton Gray, John Milhizer and Levi McDaniel. Most of the above came prior to or during the year 1836. Benjamin Barney, Michael and Alonzo Gard came in 1826, A. C. Baker in 1827. A noted Dr. Hudnel was an eccentric character and useful man, practiced in Barry and Pleasant Vale. Bartlett & Birdsong kept the first store and they also laid out Barry as the agents for Stone, the owner, of the land. In 1836 Daniel A. Shaw hauled the first load of goods into Worcester, now Barry, for Bartlett & Birdsong. They were landed at Phillips Ferry, now Griggsville Landing or Valley City. The first Fourth of July celebration in Barry took place in 1838. Among the speakers were Dr. A. C. Baker, William A. Grimshaw and Colonel William Ross. The first wedding in the township was that of Samuel Blair and Miss Lucy Brewster in 1829. Rev. William Blair preached the first sermon in his own log house on section 30, in 1829, and he also taught the first school in a log building on section 28 in 1830. Barry has two newspapers, the Adage and Record; The first bank in Barry was known as the C. & S. Davis and Angle Bank. It was opened in 1872 and in 1905 it became insolvent and went into the hands, of a receiver. Indications appear to show that the depositors will lose but little if anything. The First National Bank was organized in 1901. Barry has numerous secret societies as follows: Masons; Odd Fellows; Modern Woodmen of America; Ancient Order of United Workmen; Mutual Protective. League; Court of Honor; Grand Army of the Republic; Woman’s Relief Corps; Fraternal Army of America and Loyal Americans and a few others. Stephen R. Gray was the first postmaster; Captain C. H. Hurt is postmaster now. Barry has a fine library building, the gift of Mrs. B. D. Brown. The library is one of the best in the county, and is being added to frequently. Barry has a fine record for entertaining as the old settlers and soldiers can attest, having been often g.iven the keys of the city. Jon Shastid’s school in Barry for the term ending on April 2, 1857: Edward W. Baker, Alfred Baker, James C. Brown, Arthur Baird, Albert Blackman, James Baird, George Bill, Eugene Chamberlain, Jerome Chamberlain, Jon Chamberlain, Aaron Chamberlain, Alfred Elam, Oliver Emerson, Marion Fairchild, Eugene Gray, William E. Grubb, Ira 0. Gray, William P. Gorton, Thomas E. Gorton, Marcellus Harvey, Henry L. Hadsell, Charles H. Hurt, Jon M. Hurt, George Howland, George Jasper, Edward D.B. Jerome, Charles Klein, William R. Kidwell, David Kidwell, Daniel Kidwell, George Luzader, George W. Liggett, William E. Robison, George W. Thompson, James M. Widby, Sarah E. Bond, Jane Cheadle, Diantha Cheadle, Mary J. Crooks, Lucy M. Ellis, Emma Eddingfield, Dorothy Frike, Mary E. Gillum Catherine Harvey, Allena Lane, Elizabeth J. Lane, Mary A. Mason, Maricia Mason, Julia U. Mason, Elizabeth Petty, Nancy Petty, Lucetta Pope, Matilda Sprague.
PLEASANT VALE. The first settlers were John Wood, afterward Governor of Illinois, Willard Keyes and David Dutton, who came in 1821 and 1822, and settled on sections 16 and 22. Mr. Dutton was one of the county commissioners in 1822. Amos and Joseph Jackson, Major Hinckly, Parley Jackson, Levi Howard, Mr. Rice, Daniel Mitchell and Andrew Shearer were also very early settlers. Mr. Shearer “blazed out” the first road from where New Canton now is to the town of Washington, now Eldara. The first white child born in the township was Andrew J. Stanley, in 1823. The first death was Mary Jane McDaniel in the same year, and the first marriage was Peter J. Saxbury and Matilda Stanley in June, 1827. These early settlers endured many hardships and privations in preparing the way for future generations and future prosperity, which the people of today know not of. They ground their corn for food on a hand mill, and at times crushed it in a hominy block. The latter consisted of a hole burnt in a stump or block of wood, in which corn was placed and crushed with an iron wedge or mallet. In a short time, however, these odd and rude pieces of pioneer machinery were replaced by horse mills. These were generally situated eight or ten miles from tile settlers here, and although they were a great improvement upon the hand mills and the hominy blocks, the process of grinding would be considered very slow, indeed, by the people of this day and age of steam mills. The boys then went to mill on horseback, and seldom ever returned the same day. They would congregate under the old shed of the horse mill while waiting for their turn, and there make a fire and parch corn, tell jokes, etc. In this way they would pass the night very pleasantly without supper or sleep; for the supper could not be had, and there was no place to sleep, save on the sacks of corn.
Then came the days of schools and churches. The first schoolhouse erected by the settlers was on section 22, in 1825. It was a log cabin with a clapboard door, puncheon floor, slab benches for seats and a huge fire place at one end of the room. The desks consisted of puncheons supported by pins in the wall the fire place had no chimney except above the roof; there were two doors, one at each side of the fire place. The fuel used consisted of huge logs, which were often dragged into the house by a horse coming in at one door and passing through and out at the other. Around and near the fire place there was tio floor except the ground, the puncheon floor covering the back part of the room only. The window consisted of a log removed from one side of the room, with greased paper pasted over the aperture. The first teacher here was a Mr. Rankin. The pioneer teacher was of the ox driver class, and generally carried a large “gad” in his hands, to maintain order in the school.
Religious worship was early instituted in the first settlement of this township. The first sermon was preached by Rev. Mr. Hunter, of the Methodist denomination, and the first regularly organized religious society was also that of the Methodist. This society first worshiped in the house of Mr. Jackson, and afterward in the schoolhouse on section 22. The Mormons also figured largely as a church organization here some years later. They at one time had a society of about100 communicants, and erected a house of worship in the northwest part of the township. When the Nauvoo trouble came, however, they left this neighborhood to join their brethren at that place. The Mormon church was afterward moved to the Mississippi river, and there used for a warehouse.
In those early days the wagons, for the most part, were rudely constructed by the settlers themselves, and consisted wholly of wood. The wheels were sawed from large sycamore trees, and holes were bored in the center, in which to insert the axletree. The farmers often used these wagons in going to mill, hauling their produce to market, and for a conveyance in which to attend church.
In pioneer times, when there were scarcely any fences, and not land enough under cultivation to stop the great prairie fires which occurred in the fall of the year, they proved very disastrous to those living in the prairie. This township, consists, for the most part, of Mississippi river bottom land, a large portion of which is prairie. The grass on this bottom land grew to an enormous height, was very thick, and as high as a man’s head while on horseback. This grass was so heavy and thick that when the settlers went a-fishing in the sny they would hitch the team to a large hush or tree and drag it through the grass and mash it down, to make a road for them to pass over. In the fall of the year this luxuriant growth of grass would be set on fire by the Indians or hunters, and especially when the wind was high, would sweep resistlessly over the whole country, high and low, destroying a great dealof property.
The pioneers early learned to guard against this destructive element by plowing wide strips of land around their premises and around their grain and hay. As soon as the alarm of fire was given, each settler would immediately begin to “back fire.” This was done by setting the grass on fire next outside the plowed strip, which would burn slowly and meet the rapidly advancing flames that came rolling in majestic grandeur from twenty to thirty feet in the air.
This bottom land is now under a high state of cultivation. and since the completion of the levee has become one of the richest farming districts of America. The land lies between the sny and the Mississippi is tmber land, and as fertile as the prairie. It is now rapidly being cleared and improved.
On the northwest quarter of section 29 is a salt spring, which at one time afforded considerable salt water. Mr. Keyes carried water from this spring to his home on section 22, a distance of a mile and a half, boiled it down, and made salt for family use and for his neighbors.
As the bluffs extend from the northwest to southeast through the township, the upland is divided from the bottom land, forming a triangular section. This land is very rough and broken, and is underlaid with a heavy bed of limestone, and is consequently better adapted to the growing of small grain and fruit than to general farming. There is some excellent farming land along the course of Keyes creek, which extends along the eastern portion of the township. This creek was named in honor of Mr. Keyes, of whom we have spoken in the first part of this sketch. At one time this creek and others abounded in countless numbers of fish, and thus aided in furnishing the settlers with the necessaries of life. Although the pioneers were deprived of many things that are enjoyed at the present day, yet they always had abundance to eat and wear. If their store clothes or homespun gave way, they would simply construct clothing from the hides of animals. The first justice of the peace of this township was Major Hinckley.
New Canton is the only town in Pleasant Vale township, and has nearly 6oo population. It was founded April 2, 1835, by Charles T. Brewster, Hiram Smith and Jesse Titsworth. New Canton has two churches, Methodist and Union, open to all denominations, but mostly used by the Christian society, flourishing Sunday schools; and Epworth League and Christian Endeavor are held at both churches, with large attendance and great interest. The first school was on sectioii 9, in 1832, and the first schoolhouse was built in 1836, a Mr. Hale being the first school master. The present school building was erected in 1866, with an addition a few years later. The principal and assistants are Miss Emma Gard, Misses Flossie Shearer, Clyde Temple and Edith Gard, and the gems of knowledge are cheerfully imparted to the young citizens that will take them. The town was incorporated in 1869. The present officers are: Abraham Likes, president; trustees, M. H. Fuller, L. Gard, Jr., H. A. Massie, H. Koeller, James Temple and D. Godfrey. The business of the town is three general stores, three grocery stores, one drug store, one jewelry store, one restaurant, one hotel, two barber shops, two blacksmiths, one wood worker, two grain elevators, one lumberyard, one livery and steed stable, two physicians, four notaries public, three magistrates, three constables, seven carpenters, five stone masons and plasterers, a postoffice with three rural routes, one bank, and the following secret societies: Masons, Woodmen, Knights of Pythias, Mutual Protective League, Pike County Mutual, Knights and Ladies of Security, Royal Neighbors, Loyal Americans, Mystic Circle and Grand Army of the Republic. A few years ago the town had a pork packing and milling industry, but they were smothered out like all modest plants have been in the rural districts. New Canton is on the branch of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad, twenty-eight miles from Q uincy, Illinois, and sixteen miles from Louisiana, Missouri, and six miles from the Mississippi river. The town has telegraph and telephone connection with the outside world, also a band hall and an excellent cornet band, a billiard hall, two entertainment halls and a lodge hall, a town hall and a “cooler.” The town has had several destructive fires and numerous costly burglaries. The agricultural and live stock interests are well conducted by up-to-date and enterprising farmers, which makes the town one of the best shipping points in the county. Chicago and St. Louis are within a few hours run, and are the town’s principal markets. The old-time business men were John Webb, Shipman & Freeman, W. P. Freeman, William Turner, Hugh Barker, Warner & Blain, Perry Davis, Amos Morey, A. Shewe, Massie & Gray, Massie, Heidloff & Company. The business men of today are Atkinson & Son, H. Koeller, W. Ware, D. Godfrey, Dudley Brothers, H. A. Massie, Ed. Uppinghouse, Ellis Gard and G. W. Staff; and the physicians and surgeons, James Rainwater, George U. McConias. Joseph Jackson was the First postmaster, and John L. Morey the last one. The elevator men are Shaw-Garner Company, with Joseph McFarland, manager, and Werner Eleidloff. R. E. Funk is the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad agent.
KINDERHOOK. Kinderhook is west of Barry and joins Adams county on the north. Its southwest corner is a half mile from the Mississippi river. The first settlers were David Cole, Bird Brewer, Mr. Lyle, Amasa Shinn, Mr. McCraney, James Hull, Charles Smith, Charles and James Stratton, Thomas Orr and C. Devoll. The town of Kinderhook was laid out in 1836 by Chester Churchill and Bridge Whitten. The Wabash Railroad touches the town. Two churches and an excellent school are the town’s pride. Hull, in this township, is at the junction of the Wabash and Chicago, Burlington & Quincy railroads. Hull has a bank and a newspaper, two churches, a large grain elevator and is a good business center. The town was laid out in 1871 by David Hull, Rensselear Sweet and William Bridge.
CINCINNATI. Cincinnati is a fractional township taken from Pleasant Vale in 1881. It consists of eighteen full sections and six fractional sections and contains the old-time town of Cincinnati that in 1848 was the greatest business town in Pike county, but the great flood of 1851 almost obliterated the town. During the palmy days of steamboating it was the greatest shipping point on the west side of the county. After the coming of the railroad the shipping interests have become a dead letter. It has some as good and fertile lands as are on the earth. It has one Methodist Episcopal church in the township, known as the Wike Chapel, and numerous commodious schoolhouses. The township is noted for its abundant production of wheat and corn. It used to have a postoffice, with W. H. Odiorne as the first postmaster. Its first school treasurer was Nelson Morey.
LEVEE. Levee was originally a part of Kinderhook township and was set off in 1875. It consists of eighteen full sections and five fractional sections, nearly all of which are as good land as the sun shines on. The township has several good school buildings and a church at Spencer switch, owned and occupied by the Methodists. It has a good macadamized road leading through the township, partly sustained by the Hannibal business men. Levee has two railroads, the Wabash and the Quincy & Hannibal branch of the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad.
The business men of the various towns and villages of the county are progressive, active and enterprising, and in the past as well as the present have been an important factor in the county’s development, in the way of schools, churches, public improvements and all matters that were for the people’s best interests, but in the past decade all have been seriously handicapped in their business enterprises by a lack of home reciprdcity and the blighting cry for cheap and cheaper supplies. It has closed the factories and decreased the population of the county. There is a great cry agaiinst trusts and combines, and yet perhaps unconsciously, the general public are playing into the hands of their enemies, greatly to their own detriment. A few are awakening to the fact that the great money powers are only interested in the plain people just as far as the almighty dollar goes. Pike county is one of the best agricultural sections in the great military tract, and should be a good manufacturing cepter, having, as it has, all the natural advantages of two great rivers and three great railroads. The old-time residents were blessed with pure foods and unadulterated material. Now laws are in force forbidding adulterations~, but the suffering public are greatly imposed upon and the law seems to be a dead letter.