Jefferson County, Missouri Genealogy Trails


William E. Bage, a plasterer and farmer of Central Township, Jackson Co., Mo., was born in Washington, D. C, in 1819, the eldest of ten children born to William and Mary (Foxton) Bage. William Bage, Sr., was born in England, and when about twenty-one years of age came to the United States, and located in Washington, D. C, where he married Miss Foxton, who was born in that city in 1801. Mr. Bage worked under his father-in-law, William Foxton, as plasterer, and afterward succeeded him as superintendent of the Public Plastering Works of Washington City, holding the position until 1833, when he moved to South Bend, Ind., and a year later to Michigan, and in 1840 to Jefferson County, Mo., where he spent the remainder of his life. He learned the plasterer's trade in England, and worked at the trade after coming to Jefferson County. The mother died when about eighty years of age, and the father five years later. They were both members of the Episcopal Church. Mrs. Bage's father was also an Englishman by birth, but when a young man came to the United States, locating in Alexandria, Va. He superintended the plastering of the first public building in the City of Washington. The immediate subject of this sketch came with his parents to Missouri, and here has since made his home. He learned the plasterer's trade of his father, and has followed that occupation in St. Louis, and in Jefferson and the adjoining counties. He owns 220 acres of land besides the old homestead. He is a Democrat in politics, and his first presidential vote was cast for Van Buren in 1840. Mr. Bage is an honest upright man, and a good citizen of the county.

John Martin Bailey, a pioneer farmer and stock raiser of Jefferson County, Mo., was born in Ste. Genevieve County, Mo., in 1820. He is the eldest of seven sons and three daughters born to Henry and Barbara (Drybread) Bailey. Henry Bailey was born not far from Breed's Hill, near Boston, Mass., in 1800. John M. was educated in the old-fashioned log schoolhouse of early days, the majority of his teachers being of Irish or German nativity, and who believed that "sparing the rod would spoil the child." He remained at home until about twenty six years of age, and then married Mrs. Nancy Donnell, daughter of Jonathan Strickland, who came to Jefferson County in 1811. Mrs. Bailey died in 1858, and in 1860 he married Mrs. Caroline Burgess, daughter of Lucius and Jeanette Hollensbeck, who removed from Virginia to Missouri about 1840. Mrs. Bailey was born in the " Old Dominion." Mr. Bailey owns about 200 acres of good land at Bailey Station, all of which he has earned by his own honest labor. He experienced many hardships incident to the life of a poor boy, but succeeded in overcoming them. He makes a specialty of raising Jersey cattle, and was for many years a breeder of short-horned cattle. Since 1860 he has been a Democrat, and a Master Mason since 1857. He and wife are prominent members of the Presbyterian Church.

Henry Bailey, one of the pioneer farmers of Plattin Township, where he was born in 1823, is the second of six sons and three daughters born to Henry and Barbara (Drybread) Bailey. The father was born near Breed's Hill, Boston, Mass., in 1800, but in infancy went with his parents to Marietta, Ohio, where he was mostly reared. His father, Seth Bailey, was of the old Puritan New England stock, and died in Marietta, Ohio, when Henry, Sr., was but a boy. The latter at the age of eighteen came with his brother-in-law, Elijah Butler, down the Ohio River in a keel boat, up the Mississippi River to Ste. Genevieve, and at once came to Jefferson County. He settled upon the land on which Henry now resides. He was married in 1819, after coming to Jefferson County, and settled at the head of Isle De Bois, in Ste. Genevieve County, but soon after crossed Dover Creek to Jefferson County, where he died in 1873. after being a resident of the place for fifty-five years. He improved a good farm, reared an industrious family, and was an esteemed and useful citizen. Both parents were members of high standing in the Baptist Church. The mother was perhaps born in Ste. Genevieve County in 1801, and died in 1852. Her parents were of Dutch extraction, and were among the pioneers of Missouri. Henry remained at home until of age, and attended the country subscription schools about three months each year. This would not have amounted to much had he not spent consider able time in self-study, and thereby become a fair scholar. July 4, 1844, he married Miss Sarah Ann, daughter of J. C. and Cynthia Ann Renfro. She died in 1858 leaving three children: Evaline (wife of George W. Thompson), Josephus, and Cynthia Ann (wife of James T. Brooks). June 13, 1861, Mr. Bailey married Miss Emaline, daughter of Joshua and Jane Cole, and to them were born six children: Johnson C, Jennie B. (wife of William Warford, of Bates County), Henry J., Sallie, Zollie and Sterling. Mr. Bailey settled on his present farm in 1845, and has since made that his home. It consists of 320 acres, 100 of which are under cultivation. He received 120 acres from his father, and the rest are the result of his own exertions. He is a hard-working, industrious citizen, and has taken a deep interest in the schools, and all public enterprises; was elected to the office of justice of the peace, but could not serve. He was in favor of the Union during the late war, although his sympathies were with the South. Politically, he was reared a Whig, and his first presidential vote was for Clay, in 1844. Since the dissolution of the Whig party he has been a Democrat. He has voted at every presidential election since attaining his majority, but for but two successful candidates, Taylor and Cleveland. He and wife are consistent members of the Baptist Church.

John J. Ball, a railroad contractor of De Soto, was born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, South America, June 22, 1862. His father, John Ball, was born in Ireland in 1833, and immigrated to the United States in 1848. In 1858 he went to Brazil, South America, where he worked on railroad tunnels until 1866, when he brought his family to De Soto, where they have since resided. John Ball married Ann Cain, and of their fourteen children seven are living, viz. : Austin, John J., Margaret, Annie, Jane, Ella and Katie. In religious faith they are Catholics. Early in life John J. Ball became interested in contracting, which was his father's business; he helped build the branch of the Iron Mountain Railroad, the Cotton Belt, and others, and also takes contracts to furnish gravel to railroad companies, etc. In 1887 he loaded 12,000 car loads of gravel for the Iron Mountain Railroad. He has been in the service of the railroad several years, being first employed as water boy, then as brakeman and conductor, and finally as division road master. He is a member of the order of Railroad Conductors. December 23, 1884, he married Mary E. Barron, daughter of Felix Barron, a merchant of Irondale, Mo.

Hubert Becker, dealer in general merchandise at Maxville, was born on the Rhine, Germany, in 1832, and educated in the common schools. In 1842 he came with his parents, H. S. and Anna G. (Kremer) Becker, to the United States, and settled in Jefferson County, being among the first German settlers of Rock Township, where they made their future home. The mother died in 1869, and the father in 1874. The latter was a soldier in the French War from 1809 to 1815, was captured at Portugal in 1811, where he was held for nine months. He then joined the German Legion in England, and served until after the battle of Waterloo, where he was severely wounded and disabled from further service. He was city alderman for some time before coming to this country. Hubert was not educated in the English language, and what knowledge he has obtained of it was by his own efforts. In 1857 he took a trip through the North, among the different Indian tribes, and spent one winter in Minnesota, meeting with numerous adventures among the Indians. He then returned to Jefferson County and lived with his parents. During the war he was in Company C, of the Enrolled Missouri Militia, two years. He was married in 1863 to Miss Louisa, daughter of John and Johanna Heimbach, all natives of Germany. Mr. Becker remained on his farm until 18T5, when he commenced merchandising at Maxville, which business he has since continued with success. He is also engaged in the same business at High Ridge. He is now living with his third wife, Anna Becker. He being a Democrat, his first presidential vote was for James Buchanan. He is an energetic German, and is respected by all.

John W. Bennent, proprietor of the De Soto House, De Soto, is a native of Devonshire, England, and was born in 1829. His parents were Robert and Mary (Smith) Bennent, also natives of England, the former of whom, a farmer by occupation, died about 1835, at the age of forty-five years; the latter came to America in 1874, and died in De Soto in 1883, aged nearly ninety years. Of the six children in this family two are now in De Soto, John W. and Martha, wife of Robert Coxwell, furniture dealer. John W. Bennent was but seven years of age when his father died, and at the age of fourteen he was bound out as an apprentice to learn the cooper's trade, but the following year, in 1844, he left his native country and emigrated to Canada, first locating in Quebec, where he remained three years; he then came to the United States, and settled near Owego, N. Y., where he learned the carpenter's trade. In 1854 he went to California by water, remaining in that State four years, working at his trade and contracting. He returned to New York in 1858, and the following year went to Delaware County, Iowa, where he bought a farm and also engaged in contracting; he erected the courthouse and other public buildings in Delaware County. About 1862 he sold out and again returned to New York, and in 1868 located in Jefferson County, Mo., buying a farm of forty acres, three miles south of De Soto. In July of the same year he was employed as a bridge carpenter on the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, where he was 80on made foreman, which position he held for fifteen years. In 1883 he established a boarding house in De Soto, and in March. 1885, became proprietor of the De Soto House, which he has since successfully conducted as one of the leadif.g hotels of the place. In 1851 Mr. Bennent married Miss Mary Hale, who was born in the State of New York in 1830. They have three children: William, Frederick and Viola. Politically, Mr. Bennent is a Democrat; he is a member of the Masonic order. Mrs. Bennent is a member of the Congregational Church.

Engelbert Bergmeyer. Jr., justice of the peace, farmer and mechanic, of Rock Township, was born in Baden, Germany, in 1848, and is the only surviving child of Engelbert and Wilhelmina (Ihli) Bergmeyer, who came to the United States about 1850, and remained for about two years in St. Louis, where the mother died the first year. The family then came to Jefferson County, and settled near where Antonia now is, and here the father passed the remainder of his life. He was a farmer, and was three times married. He served about six years in the German army, and in 1848 and 1849 was in the war between Denmark and Germany. He was one of the first and enterprising settlers of the vicinity of Antonia, and died about 1883, at the age of sixty-three. Engelbert was but four years old when he came to Jefferson County, and here he was reared, with a common-school education. He remained at home until 1871, after which, for several years, he worked at the carpenter's trade, but since that time has devoted his time exclusively to agricultural pursuits. In 1873 he married Miss Caroline, daughter of Ambrose and Cordula Freidmann, who were among the earliest German settlers of Jefferson County. The mother died in 1863, but the father is still living. They came to the United Staies in 1844, and after spending about two years on an island in the Missouri River, near Washington, came to Jefferson County, where he has since resided, near Antouia. The following eleven children were born to Mr. Bergmeyer's marriage, viz.: Mary and Edward (twins), William, Emily, Katie, Mina, Rosa and Cora (twins), Walter and Matilda and Thomas (twins). The first three are deceased. Since 1875 Mr. Bergmeyer has resided on his present farm, situated one mile south of Autonia, on the Rock road, where he has forty acres, which he has improved, and made a good and comfortable home. Since 1884 he has been justice of the peace, being first appointed to fill a vacancy, and has held that position ever since. A Republican in his political views, his first presidential vote was cast for U. S. Grant, in 1872. He is a member of the Sons of Hermann, and is an active worker for the cause of education. He has been school director for many years, and is an honest, industrious citizen.

Aquilla Blackwell, another successful farmer and stock-raiser of Valle Township, was born in what is now St. Francois County, but then Washington County, below Blackwell's Station, in 1844. He was the fourth of fourteen children born to William and Elizabeth (Cummins) Blackwell. The father was born in Kentucky, March 18, 1810, and when about eight years of age came with his parents to what is now St. Francois County, when the country was a vast wilderness. His father, Jeremiah Blackwell. settled near where Blackwell's Station is now, and there passed the remainder of his days. Blackwell's Station was named in honor of him. He was a soldier in the War of 1812. William Blackwell was married at the' age of twenty-eight, and afterward settled near the North Big River Bridge, where he spent the remainder of his life. He cleared a good farm, and was an industrious, enterprising citizen. He was a member of the Masonic fraternity, and died in 1870. The mother was born in 1820, in Washington County, and died about 1881. She was the daughter of Samuel Cummins, an early settler of Washington County, but a native of Ireland, and was a member of the Baptist Church. Aquilla was educated in the rustic log schoolhouses of early times, and durine: the latter ])art of the war spent about six months in Canada. December 24, 1866, Miss Dolly A., daughter of Austin and Matilda Coleman, became his wife, and to this union twelve children were born, eleven now living: Leander, Allie J., John, William E., Ephraim, Anna, Vevey, Emmars (deceased), Albert A., Rolla R., Jefferson and Charley. Aqiuilla remained with his father in St. Francois County until 1868, when he settled on his present farm, then a dense forest, and the first stick of timber was cut to build his present house. He now has about 300 acres in cultivation, and about eleven miles of fence, making one of the best farms in Jefferson County. In all, he has about 960 acres, about 400 of which are in St. Francois County. Besides this he has considerable property in Blackwell's Station. He lives ten miles southwest of De Soto, is an earnest worker for the cause of education, is a member of the Masonic fraternity and the A. O. U. W., and a Democrat in politics, casting his first presidential vote for H. Seymour in 1868. He and wife are devout members of the Baptist Church.

N. H. Bissell, locomotive engineer on the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, with headquarters at De Soto, is a native of Windham County, Vt., and was born in 1839. His father, Horace Bissell, of Scotch descent, was born in Vermont in 1814, and followed farming the greater portion of his life, which, with the exception of three years passed in Minnesota, was spent in his native State. He was married to Fanny Newell, also a native of Vermont, who is now aged about seventy-two years: her grandfather, Samuel Hammond, was one of the fourteen men who threw tlie tea into Boston Harbor, in 1773; he was also an active soldier of the Revolutionary War. To Mr. and Mrs. Horace Bissell seven children were born, as follows: Newell H., Augusta, Albert, of Baltimore, Md.; Carrie, wife of Miron White, also of Baltimore; Edward, in Vermont; Ida, wife of Edward Brigham, of Vermont, and Jessie, wife of Filmore Slawson, of De Soto. Newell H. Bissell was educated in the common schools, and grew to manhood on a farm. In 1855 he went to Minnesota and worked for his father in a brickyard, and farmed two years. In 1858 he moved to Carondelet, and for one and one-half years was employed as brakeman on the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, and the following eighteen months as baggage man. In 1861 he became a fireman, and two years later was promoted to engineer, in which capacity he has since been employed. During the past thirty years he has never missed a single month without drawing some pay, his name appearing on the pay-roll each month. With one exception, he is the oldest engineer on the road, and has met with remarkably good success. In 1864 he married Miss Susanna Martin, a native of Baltimore, Md., and a daughter of James and Charlotte Martin. They have seven children, viz. : John, Lottie (wife of J. R. Van Frank, civil engineer in Little Rock, Ark.), Edward, Fanny, Lizzie, Jessie and Chester, Mr. Bissel has resided in De Soto for the past eighteen years. He is a Republican in politics, a member of the I. O. O. F. and Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers. He and wife are members of the Presbyterian Church.

William Blank (deceased) was born in Germany in 1830, and was a son of John and Catherine (Zollman) Blank. He was reared and grew to manhood in his native country, and at an early age commenced to learn the stone-mason's trade. He immigrated to America in 1847, and settled in Jefferson County, Mo., where he bought a farm and engaged in the pursuit of agriculture. In 1857 he married Miss Dina Fluth, who was born in Hanover, Germany, in 1839, and in 1846 came to the United States with her parents, Jacob and Sarah (Mathesen) Fluth, who settled in St. Louis. Jacob Fluth, a shoemaker by trade, died in 1881 and his wife in 1874, both in Jefferson County, whither they had moved in 1852. To Mr. and Mrs. Blank were born eight children, as follows: Catherine (wife of Charles Becker), Sarah (deceased), Minnie (wife of Augustus Sapper), Adolph W., Mary, George, William and Frederick. Mr. Blank settled in De Soto in 1864, and in partnership with William Knorpp engaged in merchandising until 1882, when he established a wood and coal yard in De Soto, in which business he was engaged at the time of his death, which occurred April 26, 1886. Mr. Blank was also engaged in contracting and furnishing wood and ties for the Iron Mountain Railroad. For many years he was one of the substantial business men of De Soto. He held membership in the Methodist Episcopal Church, of which church his wife has been a member for the past thirty years. Upon the death of his father Adolph W. assumed charge of the wood and coal yard, and is a good business man; he also deals in lime and cement, manufacturing the former in kilns on the old home place, one mile southeast of De Soto, which contains 289 acres; the lime is called white lime, and is of a superior quality. About fifteen kilns are burned per season, averaging 220 barrels per kiln; there is also a stone quarry on the farm, which has been in successful operation since

Henry Boemler, farmer and mechanic of Meramec Township, is a native of Alsace, France, born in 1835, and is the eldest of three children born to Michael and Madaline (Herrman) Boemler, who were natives of Alsace, France, where they passed their entire lives. The father was a cabinet-maker by trade, and died in 1839. The mother died in 1872. Henry received a fair education. and served three years as an apprentice at the carpenter's trade. At the age of nineteen he removed to St. Louis, where he worked at his trade for eighteen years. In 1857 he married Miss Elizabeth, daughter of Frederick and Elizabeth Geissert, natives of France. Mrs. Geissert died, and the father came to the United States in 1851. Five children were born to Mr. Boemler's marriage, three of whom are now living: Henry P. G., M. F. William and J. Lizzie. In 1873 Mr. Boemler removed to Jefferson County, and located near the mouth of Big River, where he has a fine farm of ninety-six acres, making a good and comfortable home. In politics a Republican, his first vote was cast for John C. Fremont, in 1856. He is a member of the Lutheran Church, and is an honest, industrious citizen.

Michael Boemler, farmer, of Meramec Township, was born in Alsace, France, in 1838, and is the son of Michael and Madaline (Herrman) Boemler, also natives of Alsace, where they spent their entire lives. The father died when our subject was but seven weeks old, and the mother followed him to the grave in 1872. Young Michael remained with his mother until sixteen years of age, receiving a very limited education in the common schools. He then came to the United States, and passed the first five years in Cass County, Ill., as a farm hand, after which, in 1860, he went to St. Clair C6unty, and was there employed on a farm until 1864, when he married Miss Caroline Geissert, daughter of Fred and Elizabeth Geissert, who were also natives of Alsace, France. Mr. Geissert came to the United States about 1851, but his daughter did not come until ten years later. To Mr. Boemler and wife were born seven children, six of whom are now living: Fritz, George, Lena, John, Charley and Eniil. Mr. Boemler remained in St. Clair County, and farmed as a tenant until 1878. when he came to Jefferson County, and settled on Big River, about three miles above the mouth, where he has a fine farm of 243 acres, in fact one of the finest farms in the county. Politically, he is a conservative Republican, and his first presidential vote was cast for A. Lincoln. He is a member of the A. O. U. W., and a liberal supporter of the church.

Daniel Bonacker, farmer by occupation, a native of Germany, born in Hessen. March 8, 1827, is the son of Conrad and Elizabeth Bonacker. At the age of four years the father died and at the age of thirteen the mother also died, leaving two sons of whom he was the youngest. He was thus thrown upon his own resources at a very early age. He received a good education in the common schools; in the year 1848, February 13th, immigrated to America via Bremen and New Orleans, securing passage on one of the old-time sailing vessels which took eight weeks to make the trip. Not being satisfied with the Southern climate, he concluded to go North, stopping at St. Louis. He immediately came ':'? Jefferson County, where he entered land or a homestead in Rock Township,and, after working three years as a farm hand for $4 per month, he began on his own responsibility. In 1851 he married Miss Catherine Miller, also a native of Germany, born also in Hessen. She died in 1859. Three children were the result of this marriage: August, Catherine and Dora. In 1860, he married Miss Caroline Riechman, also a native of Germany, born in Hanover. She died in 1876, leaving seven children, viz.: Daniel, Ernest, Louise, Caroline, Edward, Lydia and Benjamin; the first and last of these have died since their mother died. Mr. Bonacker has spared no pains in the education of his children. He lived on the homestead ¬Ľup to 1868, then moved to St. Louis, where he remained two years. In 1870 he returned to Jefferson County, settling on Big River, two miles from House's Springs, where he has a farm of 200 acres of land. He was in Company B, Eightieth Missouri Militia, under Gen. A. J. Smith, during Price's raid through Southeast Missouri. Politically, he is a Republican, and cast his first vote for Lincoln, in 1860.

Hon. Sherman W. Bowen, attorney-at-law, and resident of Rock Township, three miles north of Kimmswick, was born in Oneida County, N. Y., in 1823, and is the youngest of nine children born to Simon and Nancy (Waterman) Bowen, natives of Berkshire County, Mass., where they were reared and married. They afterward removed to Onieda County, N. Y., where the mother died when Sherman was but three years old. The father removed to Joliet, Ill., in May, 1835, where he made his home, but in February, 1836, while making a tour through Western Illinois, he was overtaken by a blizzard, and found forty miles from any habitation, frozen to death. He was an enterprising and influential farmer. Both parents were of Welsh descent. He was a descendant of the old Quaker stock of New England, and his father, Nathan Bowen, served in the War for Independence. Sherman received a good common-school education, mostly before his coming West, and after the death of his father spent about two years clerking in his brother's store at Savannah, Ill., after which he was in a store at Joliet for five years, when the firm disbanded and he was thrown out of work. He then began the study of law with Judges Henderson and Wilson, then of Joliet, and was admitted to the bar at the age of twenty-one. He was quite successful as a lawyer, his practice extending over the counties of Will, DuPage, Grundy, Iroquois, Kankakee and adjoining counties. After hold ing numerous school and city offices, he served seven years as State's attorney of the Eleventh Circuit in Illinois, from 1849 to 1856, the first time to fill a vacancy. He was also active and rendered valuable assistance in establishing the penitentiary at Joliet, and the iron works and other improvements in that town. In 1860 he married Miss Julia A. Howard, daughter of Alexander and Martha (Sabin) Howard, natives of Attica, N. Y., but who removed to Illinois in 1833, and settled thirty miles west of Chicago, where the father died in 1850. The mother is still living, and is residing with our subject. Mr. Howard was a prominent merchant, was postmaster at Naperville for twelve years, and was one time deputy sheriff of what was then Cook County, Ill. His father was a native of England. To Mr. and Mrs. Bowen were born three children, only one now living, named Sherman W., Jr. In 1861 he was elected mayor of Joliet, re-elected in 1862 and again in 1865. He was also largely engaged in the real estate and insurance business, rendered important service to that town in building the Cut-off Railroad, an important branch of the Michigan Central Railroad. Mr. Bowen remained in Joliet until 1873, when he came to Jefferson County, Mo., and located on his present residence, which consists of sixty acres of land or thereabout. For some years he has been afflicted with paralysis, which prevents further law practice. He has always been an earnest worker for the cause of education, and assisted largely in establishing a good school in the neighborhood where he resides, and in Joliet. Politically, he is a Democrat; his first vote was cast for J. K. Polk in 1844. He was a personal friend of S. A. Douglas, and used every effort to secure his election, in 1860. He has often been a delegate to State conventions, and was a delegate to the convention that nominated or endorsed Horace Greeley for the presidency, in 1872. He was a member of the I. O. O. F., also a member of the Universalist Association at Joliet, and is a liberal supporter of all churches. His first marriage, in 1846, was to Miss Sarah M. Kinney, who died in 1851, leaving one son, Albert, a civil engineer in St. Louis. During the war he was offered the position of lieutenant colonel of the One Hundredth Illinois, but declined it. He was actively engaged in the recruiting service, and did good work for the Union cause in his State. Col. Bowen, as he is familiarly known, is a man of fine talent and culture. He has one of the largest and most carefully selected libraries in the State, comprising a choice selection of 700 or 800 volumes.

Gabriel Boyce was born near Lexington, Ky., September 1, 1824. His parents were slaves, and were owned by Mr. John Boyce, who brought them, in company with fifteen others, to St. Francois County, Mo. Gabriel lived with his "mas'er" until the death of the latter, when he was inherited by a son, William Boyce, whom he served for several years, who sold him to Thomas Donell, on Plattin Creek; he was the property of Mr. Donell at the time of the emancipation proclamation. After he was free Mr. Boyce reported for service in the Union army, but was rejected. The following six years he worked a piece of land on shares, which was a portion of the "Plattin Rock" farm of W. S. Jewett. In September, 1848, he married Helen Minerva (born March 7, 1826), one of the number of colored people owned at that time by Mr. W. S. Howe. This marriage resulted in the birth of seven children, whose names are Harriet, born December, 24, 1848; Anderson, born April 12, 1850; Abraham, born March 5, 1853; Charlotte, born June 21, 1855; Nathan, born November 21, 1857; Gabriel, born June 17, 1860, and Clarissa Ann, born October 6, 1864, the latter deceased. January 20, 1874, Mrs. Boyce died. Mr. Boyce began life for himself with only a a young horse and $100 in money. By close economy and industry he was able to purchase a tract of land consisting of 216 acres, where he now resides, of Mr. Kennett. This he paid for in less than four years, and had some money at interest also. He has built a commodious dwelling on his farm, and improved his property generally. October 24, 1846, he married Miss Catherine Smith, who was born of slave parents in Frederickstown, Madison Co., Mo., August 3, 1853; her education was acquired while attending school nine months, in St. Francois County. By this marriage five children were born, viz.: Henry, born May 19. 1877; John, born June 6, 1878; Phoebe, born December 15, 1879, and died September 19, 1880; Charles, born February 24. 1880; Justine, born December 10, 1882. Mr.Boyce is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and also of the "Tabernacle," an organization composed strictly of colored people. He and his wife are consistent members of the Methodist Episcopal Church.

Edwin Boyne, retired farmer, of De Soto, is a native of Leeds, Yorkshire, England, and was born in 1819. He is a son of Thomas and Mary (Craven) Boyne. the former of whom, a tobacco manufacturer, went to Paris on a pleasure trip, in 1844, and was stricken with cholera, dying the following day; he was the father of seven children, of whom Edwin was the youngest. When fifteen years of age the latter was apprenticed to learn the mechanic's trade, and served an apprenticeship of five years, at the end of which time he abandoned the trade. In 1850 he immigrated to the United States, and entered 120 acres of land in Jefferson County, Mo., which tract now comprises the fair grounds, and a portion of the town of De Soto, at that time an unbroken forest, and but sparsely settled. In 1851 Mr. Boyne married Miss Hannah Brook, who was born in England, in 1829. They have been blessed with four children, viz.: Mary, wife of Charles Hopson; Charles; Sara, -wife of John Wright, of Decatur, Ill., and William, a saddler by trade. Mr. Boyne is one of the oldest citizens now living in De Soto, having seen the first house erected in that place. He has resided on his present place for the past thirty-eight years, and is a man universally esteemed for his honesty and integrity. He has preferred the life of a quiet citizen to that of a politician, and votes for principle rather than party. He and wife are members of the Episcopal Church.

William Brackmann, collector of Jefferson County, was born in St. Louis in 1850, and is the son of Gottlieb and Helena Brackmann, natives of Germany. While quite young the parents came to St. Louis, where they were married, remaining until December, 1853, when they removed to Jefferson County, locating one mile south of Dittmer's Store, where they lived for thirty years. They then sold out and purchased the Mattocks' Mill Farm, on Big River, where they still Jive. He served in the militia during the war. William was reared at home, with about sixteen months' education in the public schools and a fair German education. He then served an apprenticeship of two years at the carpenter's trade, which he followed until 1876, after which he engaged in merchandising at Dittmer's Store, and was postmaster for nine years. He then removed to High Ridge, where he has a store, a saloon, hotel, etc.; is also postmaster at High Ridge, and was justice of the peace for four years while at Dittmer's Store. In 1886 he was elected collector of Jefferson County. Previous to this, in 1874, he married Miss Ernestme, daughter of John G. and Louisa Dahn, natives of Germany, and to this union were born five children (four now living): Oscar Ida, Huldah, Arthur (deceased) and Edwin, the first three now being educated in the English language. Mr. Brackmann is a Republican in politics, and cast his first presidential vote for Gen. Grant, in 1872; is a member of the Masonic fraternity, also a member of the A. O. U. W., was christened and confirmed in the Protestant Church, to which he contributes liberally.

Joseph Bradford, superintendent of the Mammonth Mines, Valle Township, and gravel road contractor, was born in Liverpool, England, June 10, 1850, and is the son of John Bradford, also a native of Liverpool. The parents immigrated to the United States in 1857, and settled in New York City, where Joseph was reared and educated. They subsequently returned to their native country, but Joseph remained in his adopted home, and has been engaged in contracting on public works for several years. He was one of the foremen in the construction of the Hoosac tunnel, built the Bloomingburgh tunnel. New York, and also the Fourth Avenue tunnel in New York City. He was foreman in the construction of the Beacon Street tunnel, which supplies Boston with water, and, with a partner, did all the -rock work on the Northern Missouri Railroad between Ferguson and the Union Depot, St. Louis. In 1876, he sunk a shaft 170 feet deep in Mammoth Mines, Jefferson County, Mo., and one at the Virginia Mines, Franklin County, to a depth of 300 feet. In January, 1870, Mr. Bradford married Jane, daughter of James Mercer. Mr. and Mrs. Bradford are the parents of he following named six children: John, Charles, Mary E., Joseph, Jennie and an infant. Mr. Bradford owns ninety acres of land.

Henry Brady, who is another prosperous farmer of Central Township, was born in Columbiana County, Ohio, in 1815, and was left an orphan at the age of five. He then lived on a farm with his grandfather, Philip Mann, who was of German descent, and who was a soldier under Napoleon. Henry Brady worked on farms in different places for his support until seventeen years of age, and received a very limited education. He then found a position on the "Post Boy," an Ohio River steamer, as a deck hand, where he remained for three years. From 1839 to 1846 he was on the Mississippi River and its branches, with headquarters at New Orleans. He then located at St. Louis until after the war. He followed river life for thirty-five years, holding the positions of deck hand, watch hand, pilot and captain. He served on transport for Gen. Grant during the war until just before the fall of Vicksburg. In 1865 he moved to Jefferson County, Mo,, and located six miles north of Hillsboro, where he has a fine farm of over 167 acres, 100 of which are under cultivation. Previous to the war, in 1854, and while in St. Louis, he was married to Mrs. Elizabeth M. Monroe, daughter of Charles and Huldah Williams, and a native of Connecticut. Mr. Brady is a Democrat in politics, and his first presidential vote was cast for Gen. Harrison, in 1840. Mrs. Brady united with the Presbyterian Church, at New Haven, Conn., when young, and has since lived a true, religious life.

Thomas G. Brent, of Selma Hall or Kennett's Castle, on the banks of the Mississippi River, in Plattin Township. Jefferson Co., Mo., was born at Bayou Grost Tete, Louisiana. February 6, 1846, and is, therefore, but little past the age of forty-two years. While quite young he lost his parents by death, after which he accompanied his grandmother to Florissant Valley, St. Louis Co., Mo., where he grew to manhood, enjoying the privileges of a good education. This was principally obtained at the University of the Jesuit Fathers, at St. Louis. Subsequently he became engaged in lead mining in Washington County, where he had moved, as a member of the firm of Murphy, Shocker, Tyler & Co., continuing this business from 1869 to 1871. June 5, 1872, he was united in marriage with Miss Agnes L. Kennett, eldest daughter of the late Col. Ferdinand and Julia (Deaderick) Kennett. Mrs. Kennett's father was John Smith T., an early pioneer in Missouri, and a noted character of the State. Reference is made elsewhere to his settlement in this vicinity. Col. Kennett was born in Falmouth, Pendleton Co., Ky., and when a young man came to Missouri with his brothers, Mortimer and Luther M., the latter of whom served a term as mayor of St. Louis. They located and operated the Granby Lead Mines, and also had large interests in the Washington County lead mines, besides which they were engaged in merchandising. Col. Kennett was one of the principal stockholders and promoters of the St. Louis shot tower. He was a man of more than ordinary ability and intelligence, generous and kind to those needing aid, ever ready to assist in any good work, and, as a consequence, had hosts of friends. In 1854 he began the construction of his magnificent home, known as "Kennett's Castle," which he named "Selma Hall." Four years were occupied in its completion. By his marriage to Miss Deaderick, five children were born: James W., engaged in mining out West; Mrs. Agnes L. Brent; Ferdinand B.. journalist, and occupied in mining, residing at San Francisco, Cal.; the late Dr. Pres. G., of De Soto; and Lotta G., wife of Hon. R. G. Frost, late congressman from the Eighth District of Missouri. Thomas G. Brent, the subject of this sketch, was the son of Dr. John Carroll and Ann Grace Brent, both Kentuckians by birth. The former was a prominent physician and surgeon, and long resided at Bayou Grost Tete, near Baton Rouge, La., where he and his wife died. They were members of the Catholic Church. In their family were three sons and five daughters, of whom two sons and two daughters survive: Robert, clerk of Judge Dillon's court, at St. Louis; Annie, Mother Superior of the Visitation Convent. St. Paul Minn.; Eliza, wife of Judge William S. Murphy, residing on their farm at the "Big Bend" on the Meramec River; and Thomas G. Mrs. Brent was born in Washington County, Mo., and was educated at home. She and her husband are faithful members of the Catholic Church. Mr. Brent is now engaged actively and successfully in farming and stock raising. In the estimation of all with whom he comes in contact he stands high, both for his personal worth and the recognized influence he bears in the community. He has always voted with the Democratic party.

John C. Bridell, a plasterer of De Soto, is the only survivor of the family of ten children born to Isaac and Maria (Roach) Bridell, the latter a daughter of John Roach. Isaac Bridell was a native of Maryland, and when a boy went to Cincinnati, Ohio, removing from there to Aurora, Ind., when a young man, where he was married, and then, in 1839, settled in Keosauqua, the county seat of Van Buren County, Iowa, which village then consisted of three log cabins. In 1865 they removed to Jefferson County, Mo., and settled in De Soto. Isaac Bridell was a farmer by occupation in early life, but later followed the plasterer's trade. He died March 18, 1876, and his widow January 19, 1885. John C. Bridell was born in Van Buren County, Iowa, May 16, 1848, and came with his parents to Jefferson County in 1865. He learned his trade with his father. He was determined to go to the war, and twice enlisted, but his father was opposed to bis going, and took him out both times. After coming to De Soto he joined the Missouri State militia. A brother, William, served three years in Company B, Second Iowa Volunteer Infantry, and participated in the battles of Fort Donelson, Shiloh and others, and died in De Soto in 1881. He was a policeman and watchman in De Soto for many years. December 24, 1872, John C. Bridell married Miss Eugenia Hague, daughter of Frederic Hague, of Festus, Jefferson County. Mr. and Mrs. Bridell are the parents of five children: Charles, Maud, James, William and Jesse. Mr. Bridell is a member of the I. O. O. F., served as city marshal of De Soto one year, and frequently serves as supply on the police force.

James Brierton, a native of County Meath, Ireland, was born December 18, 1837. He is the youngest son of eight children, four sons and four daughters, born to Matthew and Ellen (Dunne) Brierton, both of whom are natives of Ireland, of Irish and Scotch descent, respectively. In 1852 Michael, a brother of James, left his native heath for America, and located in California, and four years later made his home in Johnson County, Iowa. He was followed by James in 1856, who stopped in Rome, Oneida Co., N. Y., for one year, and in 1857 located in Iowa City, Iowa, where he remained two years, being employed as a common laborer. From there he immigrated to Irondale, Washington Co., Mo., where he secured employment as a common laborer with John G. Scott & Co., who were then building the Irondale furnace, and he served them in every capacity from said occupation to that of general manager, holding the latter position for about four years. In the meantime the business changed into the hands of Edwin Harrison & Co., with whom Mr. Brierton still continued in the capacity of general manager. In 1879 the business depreciated to such an extent that the company decided to cease operations, and in November of that year Mr. Brierton was sent to Leadville, Colo., where he again was installed as general manager of the Harrison Reduction Works and the Argentine Mining Company. After sixteen months, finding the climate unsuited to his health, he was compelled to return to the east. Here he engaged with the Iron Mountain Company, in 1881, as assistant superintendent, serving in that capacity until 1884. In the month of May of that year he came to Festus, and engaged in general merchandising, and since that time has been conducting a thriving trade. His marriage to Miss Catherine Byrne occurred July 3, 1864, the result of which was the birth of seven children, named Nellie, Ann E., Joseph M., James, Catherine. John and Edwin. Mrs. Brierton is a daughter of Philip and Ellen (Mawthews) Byrne, natives of County Louth, Ireland. Mr. Brierton and family are members of the Catholic Church, and in political matters he is a Democrat.

Joseph Brooker, painter for the Crystal City Glass Company, was born in Wisconsin in 1850, and is a son of Eleazar and Matilda (Hurst) Brooker, wlio were natives of Baden, Germany. The father was born about 1826, and immigrated to the United States when about eighteen years of age. He spent four years in Philadelphia, Penn., and then went to Iowa, where he resided one year. He next went to Wisconsin, where he married. In 1859 he crossed the plains to California, and after a ninety days' journey behind ox teams reached his destination, where he followed mining for four years, and then returned to his family, in Wisconsin, via the Isthmus of Panama and New York. Since 1869 he has been a resident of Jefferson County, Mo. In 1862 he enlisted in Company H, Twentyfifth Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry, and for three years was with Sherman in his Atlanta and Georgia campaign. He was discharged at Madison, Wis. Joseph Brooker received a good education in his youthful days, and since the establishment of the Crystal City Plate Glass Company, has served them in various capacities, and for a number of years has been their chief painter and glazier. He is perhaps the only man who has been with the company since its organization (formerly the American Plate Glass Company), and during that time he has not lost over thirty days. In 1873 he married Sarah, daughter of James and Sarah Richards, natives of Virginia and South Carolina, respectively. Mr. Richards moved to Jefferson County, Mo., in 1869, but died in Arkansas, in 1885. The mother died in 1865. Mrs. Brooker was born in Yazoo County, Miss., and she and Mr. Brooker are the parents of three living children: Mary Ellen, Joseph and Jessie. Mr. Brooker has a good and comfortable home, and is a charter member of the A. L. of H., and he and wife are members of the Methodist Episcopal Church. He is a Republican, and his first presidential vote was cast for Garfield, in 1880.

Thomas Burgess, a retired farmer of Sulphur Springs, was born three and a half miles west of there, on Grand Glaize Creek, in 1824, and is the third of nine children born to Judge Sanders and Elizabeth (Stewart) Burgess. The father was born in Georgia, in 1792, and when but a small boy removed with his parents, Thomas and Nancy Burgess, to near Nashville, Tenn. Here Thomas Burgess died. He was a soldier in the early Indian wars, and his ancestors were among some of the most prominent English families who came to America in Colonial times. The father of Thomas, Jr., came to Missouri about 1811, and spent about two years mining lead in Washington County. He then returned to Tennessee with his ore, which he disposed of to Gen. Jackson and his troops, whom he met near Nashville, Tenn., on their way to fight the British at New Orleans. In 1813, Sanders Burgess, in company with his mother, three brothers and two sisters, again came to Missouri, and settled in Jefferson County, where the mother died in 1845, and was interred in the old family burying place, which was formerly a part of the old homestead on Grand Glaize Creek. Sanders then returned to the lead mines in Washington County, where he spent several years. He then came to Jefferson, and for several years was assisting Col. Bryant in his distillery, on Sandy Creek. While there, and in 1818, he was married, and soon after settled about three and a half miles above the mouth of Grand Glaize Creek, where he was extensively engaged in farming and stock raising, milling and distilling until 1840, when he removed to the mouth of the creek, where Sulphur Springs now stands, and largely engaged in the wood trade. He owned an old Spanish grant of land of about 1,500 acres, and 2,000 acres in the vicinity of Sulphur Springs. Mr. Burgess was well known throughout Jefferson County as a man of integrity and honor, and was for some years one of the county judges of Jefferson County. He reared a large family of children, who inherited many of his noblest characteristics, for which he was so much esteemed. He died June 3, 1855. The mother of our subject was born in Jefferson County about 1799, and died in 1848. Both were for many years faithful and consistent members of the Baptist Church. Mrs. Burgess was a daughter of Capt. John Stewart, who was of Scotch -Irish descent, and who served through the Revolutionary War under Gen. Washington, and was one of the very early pioneers and well-known citizens of Jejfferson County. Mr. and Mrs. Burgess furnished one son for the Union army. He was in Col. Thomas C. Fletcher's regiment, but soon after the fall of Vicksburg, in which he participated, was taken sick, returned home, and January 22, 1864, was buried with the honors of war. Thomas was reared at home, with very limited educational advantages, and his first move after leaving the parental roof was to engage in the wood trade on Island No. 8. In 1854 he married Miss Caroline E. Kennerly, a native of Tennessee, and the daughter of Thomas J. Kennerly, who was formerly of Tennessee, but at that time was living in St. Louis. Seven children were born to Mr. Burgess' union, three of whom- are living: Mary E., widow of Peter Kirk; Lillie, wife of Dr. W. W, Hull; and Strother, which is a family name in honor of Gen. Strother, who figured prominently in the early days of Tennessee, and who was a relative of Mrs. Burgess' people. The same year of his marriage Mr. Burgess built the house at Sulphur Springs, and in this he has ever since lived. He has made farming his chief occupation through life. and is an honest, industrious citizen. Although not a member of any church he is a liberal supporter of this and all other worthy enterprises. He is politically a Union Democrat, and voted to sustain the Union during the war. The family is well-known and esteemed throughout the county. Mrs. Burgess was a member of the Baptist Church, and died February 28, 1888, after a long illness.

Thomas L. Burgess, a merchant of North Crystal, is a native of Jefferson County, Mo., where he was born March 1, 1854, the only son of Eli and Caroline Burgess, natives of Missouri and Virginia, and of German and American ancestry. Thomas L. Burgess remained on the farm where he was reared until twenty-one years of age. About the year 1875 he was appointed agent of the Iron Mountain Railroad, at Bailey's Station, continuing in that capacity for nearly three years. He was next employed as a clerk and manager of the general store of B. H. Selmeyer, at what was then Crystal Station, now known as Silica; he remained for a short time and secured a position as night car accountant at Bismarck, on the Iron Mountain Railroad, where he worked but twenty days. After this he secured employment on the St. Louis & San Francisco Line, as telegraph operator, which vocation he followed but a short time. He then went to Piedmont, Mo., where he acted as assistant agent for the Iron Mountain Railroad for about six months, and from there went to Fulton, Ark., as telegraph operator, holding a day position. Here his stay was short, and he next located at Crocker, Mo., in the capacity of night operator on the St. Louis & San Francisco Railroad, holding the latter position about eighteen months, when he went to Lebanon and was employed in the same capacity. From the latter place he was sent to Tulsa, I. T., as operator and agent for the company, remaining about two and one-half years, and having charge, also, of the Red Fork Station. Venita was his next stopping place, as relief agent, where, after two months, he was appointed permanent agent, remaining there altogether about eight months. November 26, 1886, he was united in marriage to Miss Justine M. Hug, a daughter of Stephen Hug. She was born in Alsace, France, September 16, 1856. They have one child, Thomas B., born November 17, 1887. Mr. Burgess is a member of Shekina Lodge, No. 256, A. F. & A. M., and is also a member of Copestone Chapter, No. 33, of De Soto. His wife is a member of the Catholic Church. In political matters he is a Democrat. October 8, 1887, he erected a handsome, two-story residence and a commodious store building in North Crystal, where he has since been conducting a general merchandising business, and is doing a good trade. He is held in high esteem by a large circle of acquaintances.

Isidor Bush, of the firm of Bush & Son & Meissuer, was born in Prague, Austria, January 7, 1822. He was reared to the printing business by his father, in which he continued for several years. His education was limited until his eighteenth year, after which he was instructed by private teachers. On account of his liberal views of a political nature he was forced to flee from his native country, and sought refuge in America, landing in New York in 1849. Here he established a retail news stand, which not proving profitable, after one year he went to St. Louis, via the lakes and canals, making the trip in ten days. After having given his attention to the business of a general store in St. Louis for a few years, in connection with Mr. Taussig, he removed to Carondelet and continued the same business until 1857. After several other engagements in the mercantile business in St. Louis he became general ticket agent of the Iron Mountain Railway, which position he held until 1867. In 1865 he purchased a tract of land consisting of 260 acres, of James Foster and the State Savings Bank Association, and immediately engaged in the cultivation of fruits. His business rapidly developed, and has reached mammoth proportions, being now carried on under the firm name of Bush & Son & Meissner. Mr. Bush was a member of the conventions of 1861 and 1865 [see State History], which opposed the secession of the State of Missouri, and has otherwise been prominently identified with the leading men of the State, having been elected to a seat in the State Legislature, occupied a position in the city council of St. Louis, and served as president and secretary of the board of immigration. His marriage to Miss Theresa Taussig occurred May 7, 1844, in their native country. They are the parents of one child, Raphael, born January 7, 1845.

Raphael Bush was educated in the schools of St. Louis, and is now a member of the firm of Bush & Son & Meissner. November 26, 1874, he was united in marriage to Miss Minnie Kaufman. Five children have been born to them, viz.: Willie, Frank, Gussie, Rose and Walter. Mr. Bush and his father are members of the Independent Order of B'nai Brith, a Jewish organization. In political matters they are Republicans, but are now inclined toward independence.

David Butler was born in Warwickshire, England, in 1828. and is a son of John and Sarah (Buckley) Butler, the latter dying when our subject was about five years of age. David was reared by an uncle on a farm, and received but little schooling. In 1851 he was united in marriage to Sarah Etheridge, who was born in Staffordshire, England, and by her became the father of five children: Sarah, Thomas (who is residing in England), Eleanor, Annie and Frederick. At the age of seventeen, Mr. Butler began working in the furnace department of the Birmingham (England) Plate Glass Works, serving in that capacity until 1877, when he came to the United States in response to a call from Mr. Neale, the present superintendent of the Plate Glass Company, of Crystal City, with whom he formerly worked in England. He has since worked in the furnace department, and is a man well liked by his fellow workmen. He is an earnest advocate for education, and is conservative in politics. He belongs to the American Legion of Honor, and is a charter member of the lodge at Crystal City. He is a member of the Wesleyan Church in

Lieut. John Buxton, teacher of instrumental music, notary public and pension agent at Cedar Hill, is a native of Manchester, England, born in 1835, and is the second son of John and Elizabeth (Ravenscroft) Buxton, natives of England, born in 1811 and 1812, respectively. They were married in 1831, and in 1855 came to the United States, locating in Jefferson County, on Big River, in Meramec Township, where the father died in 1857. He was a cotton spinner, but after coming to Jefferson County engaged in agricultural pursuits. He was a man of education, and a member of the I. O. O. F. In 1858 Mrs. Buxton married Mr. D. Pitzer, who was killed by bushwhackers in 1864. The mother is still living on the old farm near Cedar Hill. Young John was educated in the Manchester schools, and came with his parents to Jefferson County, where he farmed until the breaking out of the late war, when he enlisted in Company I, Thirteenth Volunteer Infantry, as a private, and was mustered out as first lieutenant, in September, 1865, after over four years of hardship and suffering. He took part in the battles of Forts Henry, Donelson, first Nashville battle, Shiloh, Corinth, and through the siege of Vicksburg. In July, 1862, his regiment was consolidated with the Twenty-second Ohio, and the Thirteenth Missouri was no more. He was discharged at Camp Chase, Ohio. In 1866 he returned to England, where he married Miss Sarah, daughter of James and Elizabeth Turner, and to them were born four sons: Frank J., Louis U., William J. and Edward. The same year of his marriage Mr. Buxton returned to Jefferson County, and settled at the mouth of Belew's Creek, where he lived until 1885, when he located at Cedar Hill, and devoted his attention to music. Since 1887 he has been notary public, and for several years has been pension agent. He is a Republican in politics, and his first vote was cast for A. Lincoln, in 1860. He is a member of the G. A. R., of John D Rahye Post, at Cedar Hill, of which he is the quartermaster. Capt. William J. Buxton, farmer, of Big River Township, was born in Manchester, England, in 1832, and is the elder of two sons born to John and Elizabeth (Ravenscroft) Buxton, natives of England, born in 1811 and 1812, respectively. [For further particulars of parents see sketch of John Buxton.] William J. was educated in the Manchester schools, and at the age of twenty came to St. Louis, but in 1854, just two years later, returned and married Miss Mary Jane Dillon, daughter of Patrick and Ellen Dillon. Twelve children were born to this union, eleven of whom are now living. The year after his marriage Capt. Buxton returned to Jefferson County, in 1855, locating in Meramec Township, and in 1861 purchased the farm upon which he is now living. This consists of 500 acres of fine land, and is situated nine miles northwest of Hillsboro. At the breaking out of the late war he took a firm stand for the Union, and in 1862 organized Company E, Eightieth Enrolled Missouri Militia, which he commanded for about two years, when he joined the United States service in command of Company B, Forty-seventh Missouri Volunteer Infantry, and operated along the line of the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, and at Pilot Knob during the invasion of Gen. Price. In 1864 he went with A. J. Smith and operated from Nashville to the Alabama line. He remained in service until March 29, 1863, when he was mustered out at Benton Barracks, Mo. About the time he was ordered to Tennessee he was notified of his election to the office of collector of Jefferson County, in 1864, but having already been chosen captain of his company, in which capacity he was then serving, he chose to remain in the service of his country. Since the war he has devoted his time exclusively to agricultural pursuits, at which he has been quite successful. He is a stanch Republican, and his first presidential vote was cast for A. Lincoln, in 1860. He is commander of the John B. Rahye Post, No. 314, at Cedar Hill. He was the founder of the Germania Council, Union League of America, in 1863. The family are members of the Catholic Church.

John T. Byrd, a native of Plattin Township (Survey 1245), Jefferson Co., Mo., and a successful farmer and stock-raiser of the same, was born in 1827, and is the fourth of twelve children born to Benjamin B. and Mary Ann (Johnston) Byrd. Benjamin B. Byrd was born at Salisbury, Md., in 1796, and received a good English education. He came with his father to Jefferson County in 1818, and one year later married and settled on the tract of land where John T. now resides. He was one of the enterprising, industrious citizens of the county, and spared no pains to give his children a good education. He served many years as justice of the peace, and did a great deal toward the advancement of the country. He died in July, 1860, and was one of the few who paid any attention to education. His father, John Byrd, was born in Maryland, and at the age of twenty had served five years' apprenticeship at the carpenter's trade. After he had accumulated some means he purchased a 4,000 farm and a negro. He married a widow with some means, and continued to accumulate wealth. In 1818 he boarded a keel boat at Wheeling, Va., came to St. Louis, but, not being satisfied with the society there, then a small French trading post of French Creoles and Indians, he dropped down to Herculaneum, bringing with him thirty negroes and about $70,000 from Maryland. He then purchased the survey already mentioned, where he lived about two years. He then went to Washington County, where he died, in 1840, at the age of eighty-six. His father was an English doctor, but came to America at an early day. The mother of John T. was born near Louisville, Ky., in 1799, and when four years of age came with her parents to what is now Jefferson County, and there died in 1864. Her father, Benjamin Johnston, settled on Sandy Creek, where he passed his last days. He was a man of education and of influence in Jefferson County. He was in public office for many years, and, perhaps, married more couples than any other man in Jefferson County in his day. His wife was a daughter of old Col. Thompson, so famous in early Tennessee days. The subject of this sketch was reared at home, and educated by a private tutor. In 1849 he crossed the plains to California, being seven months in making the trip. After spending two years in successful mining he returned, and in 1852 married Miss Lou Catherine, daughter of Achilles and Patience Smith. Mr. Smith was born in Virginia, and at the age of twelve went to Davidson County. Tenn., and served with Johnson in the War of 1812. He soon after came to St. Louis County, Mo., where he married, and where he passed the remainder of his days. He died in Jefferson County, in 1883. His wife was born in Jefferson County, and, when but a child, came with her parents to St. Louis County, where Mrs. Byrd was born. Mrs. Smith was a sister of Gov. Marmaduke's mother. Of the six children born to Mr. Byrd and wife, two are now living: Mary Ann, now Mrs. William A. Smith, who lives on the farm with our subject; and Prof. Thomas S., a teacher and merchant at Hematite, one of the foremost educators of Jefferson County. Mr. Byrd has always made his home on the farm where he was born, which consists of 321 acres well cultivated and well improved. After coming from California he purchased 360 acres. From 1864 to 1865 he spent eleven months on the Pacific Coast, California, Oregon, Idaho, Washington Territory, etc. He is one of the prominent and upright citizens of Jefferson County, where he is universally esteemed. His son spent three years at Caledonia High School and one year at Fayette. Politically, Mr. Byrd was formerly a Whig but is rather conservative, acting with the Democratic party. His first vote was for Fillmore, in 1856. He is a member of the I. O. O. F., and also a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church South, of which his wife was also a member. She died December, 1884.

Judge Patrick Byrne, who is numbered among the leading farmers and stock-raisers of Meramec Township, was born in County Meath, Ireland, February 1, 1820, and is the son of James and Bridget Byrne. James Byrne was fairly educated, and was a farmer by occupation. He came to the United States in 1849, and spent the summer in Wilmington, Del., after which he removed west to St. Louis, and in 1850 to Jefferson County, where he purchased a small tract of land, which is still a part of the Byrne tract. On this he passed the remainder of his days. The mother died in Ireland. Patrick received a fair education in attendance at the common schools, and after coming to Jefferson County with his father, taught one term of school in Meramec Township. He was first married to Miss Catherine Campbell, of St. Louis, who lived only a year afterward. His second marriage was to Rosa Byrne, February 3, 1855. She was a native of County Louth, Ireland, but came to the United States in 1855. Eleven children were born to this union, eight of whom are now living: James, Thomas, Patrick, John, of St. Louis, engaged in the commission business; Christopher, who is preparing for the priesthood ; Mary J. , Rosan and Margaret E. Mr. Byrne has 800 acres of land in different tracts on Big River, and all this fine property was obtained by his own unaided efforts. In 1859 he, in company with his cousin, Patrick Dunigan, established a store on Big River, which they ran for five years very successfully. In 1865 Mr. Byrne purchased a mill low down on the river, which he has since rebuilt and run for many years, but is now owned by his son James. He is a Democrat in politics, and his first presidential vote was cast for James Buchanan. He was for several years justice of the peace, of Meramec Township, and he, in company with others, built the first mile of macadamized road ever built in the county, and received the first bonds ever issued by Jefferson County for that purpose. In 1884 he was elected associate judge of the Jefferson County Court from the First District, and served with credit for one term. He was also at one time district assessor.

Judge M. F. Byrne, proprietor and three-fourths owner of the Byrnesville fiouring-mill, is a native of New Orleans, born December 23, 1849, and the eldest of six children born to Patrick P. and Catherine (McGee) Byrne. The father was born in Ardee County, Ireland, and when fourteen years of age left the parental roof and came to the United States, where he found employment with a gardener in New York City. He soon afterward shipped on board a man-of-war, with which he was connected for two years, cruising in different parts of the world. He then settled in New Orleans, where he was married March 19, 1848. In 1850 he went to California, and spent about a year in successful mining, after which he returned to New Orleans, and from there he removed to St. Louis, in 1851. Two years later he removed to Washington County, Ill., where he farmed with his usual success until 1867, when he came to Jefferson County, and purchased what was formerly known as Yerk's Mill, on Big River. He rebuilt the mill, made other improvements, and remained here until his death, which occurred in December, 1872. The mother was born at Dublin, Ireland, in January, 1829, and died November 6, 1880. Both parents were members of the Catholic Church. The subject of this sketch received a common-school education, and also graduated from Jones' Commercial College, at St. Louis. On the death of his father, he was appointed administrator of the estate. For seven or eight years he operated a general store in connection with his milling, and then leased the store but still continued in charge of the mill. In 1875 a post office was established and he was made postmaster, which position he has since held. In 1887 he improved the mill with a full roller system, and is crowded with business. In 1878 he was elected associate judge of the county court from the First District, and served with credit for one term of two years. He was elected, perhaps, by the largest majority ever given a candidate in the district. He is a Democrat in politics, casting his first presidential vote for Samuel J. Tilden, in 1872, and is a member of the Catholic Church. He is three-fourths owner of the old home farm, of 330 acres of the best land in the county, and also has one-half interest in several other tracts. He was a member of the convention which nominated delegates to the National convention nominating Gen. Hancock, and has also served other State and congressional conventions.

History of Franklin, Jefferson, Washington, Crawford & Gasconade Counties Missouri Goodspeed Publishing Company 1888

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