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Crawford County, Missouri
History
Organization

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Organization.—An act to organize the county of Crawford, was passed January 23, 1829, and was in part as follows:

 

Section 1. All the territory heretofore attached by law for civil and military purposes to the county of Gasconade be and the same is hereby declared to be erected into a separate and distinct county, to be called the county of Crawford, which is hereby attached to the Fourth Judicial Circuit in this State, and that all rights and privileges guaranteed by law to separate and distinct counties be and the same are hereby extended to the said county of Crawford.

 

Sec. 2. John Staunton, of the county of Franklin, James Dunnica, of the county of Cole, and Hugh Barclay, of the county of Gasconade, are appointed commissioners for the purpose of selecting the seat of justice for said county, and the said commissioners are hereby vested with all the powers granted under the law, entitled "an act to provide for organizing counties hereafter established," approved January 14, 1825.

 

Section 3 provided that Crawford County should belong to the Third Judicial District, and that the circuit court should be held on the first Mondays of February, June and October, and Section 4 provided that the courts should be held at the house of James Harrison until a temporary seat of justice was fixed upon by the tribunal transacting the county business.

 

Section 6 attached Crawford County to the Seventh Senatorial District, with Cole, Gasconade and Franklin. The next legislation with respect to the limits of Crawford County was taken January 4, 1831, when an act more effectually to define the boundaries of Crawford County was passed by the Legislature. This act was in the following language:

 

Section 1. Be it Enacted, etc., That all that portion of territory included in the following boundaries, to-wit: beginning at the southwest corner of Washington County, running west to the middle of Range 7 west; thence south on the dividing ridge between the headwaters of Current and Gasconade Rivers to the dividing ridge between the headwaters of Eleven Point and Gasconade Rivers; thence in a straight line to a point where the township line dividing Townships 33 and 34 north crosses the main fork of the Niangua River; thence down said river to the mouth of the same; thence down the Osage River in the middle of the main channel thereof to the line of Gasconade County; thence east with the township line between Townships 39 and 40, to the county line of Washington County; thence south with said line to the beginning, is hereby declared to be the permanent boundaries of the said county of Crawford.

 

On January 18, 1831, a resolution was passed by the General Assembly that all that portion of territory lying south and west of Crawford County which was not included in the limits of any county should be attached to the county of Crawford for civil and military purposes, until otherwise provided by law.

 

With reference to the county seat of Crawford County, an act was passed by the General Assembly February 13, 1833, to authorize the county court of Crawford County to fix the temporary seat of justice of the county, in the following language:

 

Be it Enacted, etc. That the county court of Crawford County be and they are hereby authorized to select a suitable place for holding the courts of said county; which place shall be as near the center of population of said county as circumstances will permit.

 

On March 3, 1869, an act relating to county boundaries was approved, one section of which was as follows.

 

Be it Enacted, etc., That Section 60, Chapter 34, of the general statutes be so amended as to read as follows:

 

Section 60.—Crawford, beginning at a point in the middle of the main channel of the Meramec River, where a line running due west from a point sixteen chains north of the quarter section corner on the line between Sections 14 and 15, Township 40, Range 2 east, to the middle of Range 4 west, intersects the same; thence due south with the western line of Washington County to the township line between Townships 34 and 35; thence west to the southwest corner of Township 35, Range 3 west; thence north with the range line between Ranges 3 and 4 west, to the southwest corner of Township 36, Range 3 west; thence west with the township line between' Townships 35 and 36, to the southwest corner of Township 36, Range 5 west; thence north with the range line betweeti Ranges 5 and 6 to the northwest corner of Section 18, Township 40, Range 5 west; thence running due east nine miles to the northeast corner of Section 16, Range 4 west, and thence to the northwest corner of Franklin County, being a point on the sectional line between said Section 16 and Section 15, Township 40, Range 4 west, thence due east to the place of beginning.

 

From the history of the county court it will be seen that the first records of that court cannot be found, and hence it is impossible to state when the county was divided into municipal townships, but from the records preserved it is readily inferable that the townships in existence when they began (at the February term, 1835) were as follows: Meramec, Liberty, Cotoway, Johnson and Skaggs. At the May term of this court, 1836, it was ordered that Meramec Township be divided into two separate parts, the dividing line to commence at Thomas F. Clayton's, at the Little Prairie; run thence to West Maulclinson the Dry Fork of the Meramec, to include said Mauldin in Meramec Township; from West Mauldin' s to Peter Pinnells on the main Meramec, to include said Pinnell in Meramec Township; from said Pinnells southeast to the county line; the northeast half to be still Meramec Township, and the southwest half to be Watkins Township; elections in Watkins Township to be held at the house of James Wright, living at the north of Little Spring Creek, and those in Meramec Township at the courthouse in Steelville.

 

Judges of election in the various townships were appointed at the May term, 1836, as follows:

 

Meramec—Joseph England, Joseph Collins and Noyes Mc-Kean.

 

Liberty—Arthur McFarland, John Twitty and Battle Harrison.

 

Courtois—Moses Scott, Silas B. Brickey and Peter Brickey.

 

Johnson—AbsalomDuson, William Montgomery and Benjamin Boussett.

 

Skaggs—Lewis Bridges, John Duncan, Sr., and Samuel Brown.

 

Osage Township was organized November 11, 1847, with the following boundaries: Commencing on the west side of Courtois Township, on the section line between Sections 6 and 7, in Township 36, Range 3 west; thence due east with said section line to the county line between Washington and Crawford Counties; thence south with said county line; thence west with said township line to where it joins Watkins and Meramec Townships; thence north to the place of beginning.

 

Boon Township was organized August 14, 1848, with boundaries as follows: Commencing at the southeast corner of Gasconade County, running thence east with the township line dividing Townships 39 and 40 to the Springfield & St. Louis Railroad; thence to Harrison's Mill, on Thickety Creek; thence with the road leading from Jefferson City to Potosi to the Meramec River; thence due east to the Washington County line; thence north to the northeast corner of Crawford County ; thence west to the Gasconade County line, and thence to the place of beginning.

 

In 1870 the townships were Osage, Courtois, Liberty, Boon, Oak Hill, Benton, Meramec, Knob View and Union, the same as now.

History Excerpts from ‘History of Franklin, Jefferson, Washington, Crawford, & Gasconade Counties, Missouri’, The Goodspeed Publishing Co. 1888

 

 

Last up-dated 09/22/2013

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