Benton County, Missouri
Genealogy Trails
Genealogy and History

Benton County, Missouri

Volume 1

Compiled And Written By:
Publishers: White & Miles

United States Senator of Missouri


 In excellent condition, the two story brick is a soft rose color with wooden door and window facings white side has a two-story, four room addition built in 1954 which overlooks the natural rock fountain and fish pond
 This is the third Benton County Courthouse. The second, The east built in 1846, on this same location, also was of  brick it had replaced a 20'x30' log structure across the street  on the northwest where the county jail now stands.


 You are looking at a copy of The History of Benton County, Missouri, Volume I, 1969. 

This is the first all-inclusive history written since 1889, that being the Goodspeed Publishing Company edition which followed Judge James H. Lay's history by thirteen years. Love of this beautiful and historic place, and the tantalizing bits of the past constantly popping up, prodded the two authors into action after years of gathering memorabilia because they thought it too precious to discard. Mrs. White's job was gathering material and writing about the Mexican War, Civil War, early residents, the postal and early political system, the Indians and the pre-historic animals, writing countless letters and driving miles to ferret out data to fill "blind spots." She also supervised make-up and production of the final product. Mrs. Miles labored five months on old newspaper files from 1880, interviewed countless people about their families, family lore and pictures. The great volume of writing in this book was her lot. And she admits that she thoroughly enjoyed the tedious task---most of the time! She has this to say about her research: .. "Benton County has been my home for 42 years--since my birth-and even though I was away in the nation's Capitol for nine years, this remained "home" to me. In going through the old copies of The Enterprise since 1880 on (and the old files furnished much of the material for this book), I gradually began to realize something.....and that was that nothing has changed here, nothing at all.  Only the outside trappings are different. In 1830, 1860, 1890, 1915 --you name the year -- people were basically the same as they are now. They worried about their children, hated war, lost their loved ones, cried, laughed; they were petty, generous, kind, spiteful -- nothing has changed much, really."
If anything in this book causes you to say: "Now, why did they put that in the book - it wasn't necessary - please remember this book is about people....human beings - many long dead and gone and their human frailties were as much a part of the pattern of life as our own errors are today. If' reading this book causes you to say: "Well, why didn't they write about this-or-that or such-and-such a person" please remember we beseeched  you,  The Enterprise, to bring us any story any picture you would like to have included. " We hope you enjoy this book as much as we enjoyed compiling it. If you do, remember, there's more coming up. Volume II will include material on schools, teachers and students, Bagnell and Kaysinger Dams and resort developments in the county, transportation (steamboats, stage coaches, Fred Harvey's bus line, etc.), interesting material on Benton County's towns and communities (some long gone), the Great Depression in Benton County, storms and disasters, court trials through the years, wars (from World War I up and how Benton Countians took part), post offices, births and deaths and interesting (we think) material about people, people and more people. We imagine we'll also have to include a "catch-all" chapter titled "Miscellaneous" to gather all the loose ends we missed in Volume I. Again, thanks for picking up this book to read. We do hope you enjoy it.
(Mrs. Mablon Neill White) (Mrs. Daniel Black Miles)
October, 1969 Warsaw, Missouri 

Table Of Contents

1904 Plat Map Of Benton County
Dedication To Thomas Hart Benton For Whom The County Was Named

Foreword By Authors

Chapter I: Pre-Historic Times

Chapter II: Indians Of The Area
Chapter III: Early Settlers

Chapter IV: Politics And Government

Chapter V: Wars Of Nineteenth Century

Chapter VI: How It Was To 1900
 (these are newspaper gleanings to 1900)

Chapter VII: People From 1885 To 1900

Chapter VIII: Marriages, Births And Deaths To 1900
Chapter IX: Wills
Chapter X: The Churches

Chapter XI: Marriage Licenses 1839 Thru 1870

Chapter XII: Biographical Index 1889

Chapter XII I: Listing Of Benton County Officials


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