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CALDWELL COUNTY HISTORY
Caldwell County is a county located in the U.S. state of Missouri.
Its county seat is Kingston. The county was organized December 29, 1836
and named by Alexander Doniphan to honor John Caldwell, who participated
in the George Rogers Clark Native American Campaign of 1786 and was the
second Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky.
Caldwell County was originally part
of Ray County. The first white settler was Jesse Mann, Sr., who settled
one-half mile northeast of the public square of Kingston on Shoal Creek in
1831. The early settlers moved back south in 1832 for better protection
during the Black Hawk War uprising.
A few Mormon settlers, who had
been evicted from Jackson County, Missouri, moved into the county in 1832,
and included Jacob Haun, whose mill on Shoal Creek would become the scene
of the bloodiest incident in the Mormon War, known as the Haun's Mill
The settlers established Salem, the first town in the
county, two miles southeast of Kingston. A larger number of Mormons moved
to the county in the fall of 1836. The Missouri General Assembly created
Caldwell County in December 1836, with the understanding that it would be
dedicated to Mormon settlers. Its county seat was Far West, Missouri. By
1838 Far West reported a population of 4,000.
The major figures of
early Mormon history, including Joseph Smith, Jr., Hyrum Smith, Brigham
Young, John Taylor, Edward Partridge, Sidney Rigdon, Parley P. Pratt and
John D. Lee, were included in the migration.