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Bates County

Boone Township 


Beginning at the northeast corner of section i, township 42, range 32 ; thence west six miles ; thence south, five and three-eighths of a mile ; thence east, six miles ; thence north, five and three-eighths of a mile, to the place of beginning.


The Mormon Fork with its tributaries, flows nearly through the center of the township, from west to east, and furnishes a sufficiency of water for all practical purposes. The timber supply is good ; there is also an abundance of limestone in the township. Coal oil and three other different kinds of oil, have been discovered in the township, on the north side of Mormon Fork, on section 23. The discovery of the existence of oil was fi,rst made nearly two years ago by Mr. William R. Marshall, who, while engaged upon his farm, six miles west of Adrian, accidentally noticed what appeared to be an oily substance floating upon the water of Mormon Fork of Grand River, a small stream passing through his premises. He made only a casual examination at that time, but some months thereafter in conversation with other parties, he mentioned the discovery, u'nd soon after a more thorough examination was made, resulting in proving conclusively that oil certainly existed somewhere in the immediate vicinity in considerable quantities. During the summer of 1882, farther prospecting was inaugurated, and a shaft sixty-five feet deep was sunk. At this depth crude oil in quite large quantities was discovered, and at once a number of leading capitalists of Bates County organized a company for the purpose of developing the oil interests. Samples of the crude oil were taken to St. Louis and analyzed and refined, the result exceeding the most sanguine expectations. The crude oil resembled that of the Pennsylvania oil regions very much, and when refined it was found to contain ninetyBOONE five per cent, of pure paraffine, besides being quite strongly impregnated with benzole. The refuse after refining was found to be an excellent quality of asphaltum. As soon as this analysis was made the gentlemen composing the company, viz : Messrs. W. R. Marshall, R. B. Marshall, J. C. Clark, F. J. Tygard, R. Weil, Aaron Hart and A. L. McBride at once perfected arrangements for a lease of 480 acres of the land supposed to contain the oil deposits, for a term of fifty years, ordered modern machinery, and at present everything is almost in readiness for the development of the new enterprise. A number of small wells have been sunk in various portions of the lease, and in every one undoubted evidences of the existence of oil in paying quantities were discovered. In the large shaft first sunk water was struck at the depth of sixty-five feet. Upon the surface the oil floats in a thick scum.

By saturating a blanket in this the oil is lifted off, and in this way six gallons of oil per day can be readily saved. When the pumps are put in operation, experienced prospectors say that each well will produce at least one barrel of pure oil per day, which quantity is sufficient to pay quite handsomely. In the bottom of the shaft above described a six inch well has been drilled to the depth of 105 feet, which passes through 150 feet of oil bearing sandstone.

In the opinion of experienced prospectors the whole of this portion of the county is underlaid with rich deposits of oil, and there now seems to be no doubt but that a very important interest has been developed. The gentlemen above mentioned have already entered into articles of agreement, and as soon as possible will incorporate themselves as a joint stock company. The capital stock has not yet been agreed upon, but the gentlemen are all in excellent financial condition, and there will be no lack of money to develop the enterprise. Oil has also been. discovered south of the Marias des Cygnes River, in what is supposed to be paying quantities, but this discovery has not been as thoroughly developed as the wells upon the Marshall farm ; but it is understood that another strong company will be organized soon to develop this new discovery.

If it should prove that this county is really underlaid with oil in paying quantities—and at present there seems but little doubt that it is — this, in addition to its unequaled coal mining interests and magnificent agricultural advantages, will render it indeed the banner county of the state.


William R. Marshall came to the township at a very early day, from Kentucky, and located on section 15, on Mormon Fork, so-called because of a Mormon settlement which was made there, after the Mormons were compelled to leave Jackson, Clay and other counties in Northwestern Missouri.

Barton Holdennan was another early pioneer, coming from Illinois and opening a farm in section 35, on the south side of Mormon Fork. He is still living upon the place he settled, and has raised a large family.

" Yet then this liille spot of earth well lill'd, A numerous family with plenty fiUM, The good old man and thrifty housewife spent Iheir days in peace and fattened with content; Enjoyed the dregs of life, and lived to see A long descending healthful progeny."

George L. Smith located on section 27, and was killed during the war. His sons, William and John, now reside in Bates County. Enoch Boiling, settled on the land that William R. Marshall now owns, and died about the year 1861. John M. Galloway, came to the county early and took a claim in section 35, on Mormon Fork. He was from Illinois, and died in 1876, leaving a wife and children. Mrs. Galloway, while visiting in the neighborhood in 1879, was found dead on the prairie.

Joseph Cook was an early settler and located on section 36. David Stewart, from Kentucky, opened a farm on section 7, on the north side of Mormon Fork. He died about the year 1874.

Samuel Stewart came about the same time to the county and located on section 19 ; he is now living in Linn County, Kansas.

David Hufft settled section 19, John Puffer section 28. He was killed during the war of 1861. Elias Baldwin located on section 28, near the old town of Parkersville, on the mound. He still resides on the old place. James McNeil was also an early settler and took a claim on section 8.

About the close of the rebellion the population of the township was largely and rapidly increased in number by the arrival and permanent settlement of Joseph Mudd, Isaiah Brown, Morris Roach, James Roach, James Bagby, William Bagby, J. D. Masterson, Wilson Swank, A. D. Robbins, J. W. Hardman, Peter Black, P. G. Lightfoot, Richard Richardson, John Fenton and R. F. Canterbury.


The M. E. Church South, erected a frame house of worship in 1880, one and a half miles south of Burdett. It was, however, totally destroyed in July, 1880, by a tornado which swept over that section of the county, and has not been rebuilt. G. W. M. Ferguson and wife, Barton Holderman and wife, J. W. Hardman and wife, R. F. Canterbury and wife, William Alexander and wife, Samuel Simpson and wife, and Thomas Simpson and wife, were some of the persons constituting the original membership.


The town was surveyed and located in September, 1870, by Daniel Cothrien and Oliver B. Heath. It is on section 20, township 42, range 32. The first house was erected by Tumbleson & Shorb, for a business house, soon after the town was laid out. Wilson & Dillon built the next business house. The first postmaster was F. M. Tumbleson. The present business of the town is done by J. H. Tindsley, who has a general stock of goods, and is the present postmaster. Samuel D. Groff is the blacksmith; Gazine is the shoemaker; S. W. McDaniel is the miller. The first mill was erected in Burdett in 1870 by A. D. Basore. It was destroyed by fire and in 1874 another mill (saw and grist) was erected by Lewis Adams. In 1881 this mill was moved to Archie, Cass County.


was one of the oldest towns in the county. It was laid out in June, 1857, by Wiley Parker, after whom it was named, on section 28, township 42, range 32. John Frazier was the proprietor of a grocery store at an early day. John T. Peck was one of the pioneers of the town, Wilson & Feeley were there soon after the town was laid out, selling goods. Dr. Thomas F. Atherton was the first physician ; W. H. Atherton was the first blacksmith. The town was destroyed during the war of 1861. A cornfield now marks the spot where it stood.


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