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Biography of John C. Chilton

JOHN C. CHILTON. To preserve the lineaments of our companions we engrave their portraits; for the same reason we collect the attainable facts of their history. Nor do we think it necessary, as we speak only truth of them, to wait until they are dead, or until those who know them are gone; to do this we are ashamed only to publish to the world the history of those whose lives are unworthy of public record. By the introduction of an admirable system of local biography every man, though he has not achieved what the world calls greatness, has the means to perpetuate his life, his history, through the coming ages. James Chilton was born on the Chilton farm, on the banks of Current River, eight miles southeast of Van Buren, in the year 1828. He was a son of Mark Chilton, who came to this State at a very early date. James Chilton was a farmer all his life and owned a good farm of 100 acres, all of which were under cultivation, He was Democratic in his political views and held the office of sheriff of Carter County one term, being well and favorably known all over the county. Mr. Chilton was married in Washington County, Missouri, to Miss Martha Johnston, a native of Washington County, Missouri, born in 1835, and their union was blessed by the birth of five children: Benjamin F., a merchant residing at Alton, Orange County, Missouri; Lillie, wife of Henry Detmer, of Wayne County; Lizzie, wife of James Moseley, M.D., of Alton; John C., subject; and Viola, who is the wife of...

Biography of George W. Legg

GEORGE W. LEGG. After an industrious and well-spent life devoted to the occupation of farming, George W. Legg is now living in retirement at McDonald Station, Missouri, and is in the enjoyment of a competency which his early industry has brought him. He is a Virginian by birth, and first opened his eyes on the light in 1827, being a son of Willis and Susannah (Land) Legg, natives of Virginia also, who removed to Ohio when the subject of this sketch was a small lad, but a few years later returned to their old home. The father was successfully engaged in tilling the soil, but also run a keelboat on the Kanawha, Ohio and Mudd Rivers, and in the last named stream eventually lost his life. His father, Davenport Legg, resided in Virginia many years. After the death of her husband Mrs. Susannah Legg returned to Ohio, and there she was called from life prior to the opening of the Civil War. She bore her husband two sons and five daughters: James, of Illinois; George W., Sarah, Lucinda, Lydia; Lettie, who died in Ohio, and Nancy, who died young. George W. Legg obtained a thorough knowledge of farming in his youth, and received a fair education in the common schools near his rural home. He was married in 1852, in Lawrence County, Ohio, to Charlotte, daughter of John and Elizabeth Vermillion, who were probably natives of Virginia and Pennsylvania. respectively, but were married in the Buckeye State, where the rest of their lives were spent in tilling the soil. Mrs. Legg was born in Lawrence County, and was there...

Biography of Samuel D. McSpaden

SAMUEL D. MCSPADEN. We present with pleasure a sketch of the life of one of the most substantial and prominent farmers and stockraisers of Pike Creek Valley, Carter County, Missouri This worthy citizen was born in Gordon County, Ga., in 1847. The son of Joseph and Edith (Dillard ) McSpaden, the father a native of Virginia, born October 16, 1820, and the mother of east Tennessee, born October 1, 1827. Mr. and Mrs. McSpaden met for the first time in Gordon County, Ga., whither they had removed with their parents, and here they were married. In 1869 they moved to Carter County, Missouri, and settled on a small improved farm in Dry Valley. There they passed the closing scenes of their lives, the father dying January 24, 1882, and the mother August 15, 1883. During his entire life Mr. McSpaden followed farming, and he was quite a wealthy man at one time, although he lost all by paying security debts. He led a very active life and was one of the truly good men, a Christian in its true sense. His father, Samuel McSpaden, died in Maury County, Tennessee, when our subject was a small boy. He was a native Virginian, but moved from there to Tennessee and thence to Georgia, where he died. He was a farmer and an extensive stock trader. He and wife, whose maiden name was Phoebe Butcher, had a large family, and one of their sons, William, died in the city of Mexico during the Mexican War. The father of our subject was the only one who came to Missouri. Grandfather John Dillard died...

Biography of Hon. Robert L. Coleman

HON. ROBERT L. COLEMAN. It is the men of broad and comprehensive views who give life to communities and build cities-men who have foresight and energy, pluck and push to forward their enterprises and still retain an untarnished reputation through it all. Such a man is Hon. Robert L. Coleman, now circuit clerk and recorder and ex-representative of Carter County. He was elected to his present responsible position in 1890 by the Democratic party, of which he is a zealous member. Previous to this, in 1886, he was elected school commissioner, held that position two years, and was elected to represent the county in the Thirty-fifth General Assembly of the State. At present he is a candidate for the office of circuit clerk and recorder, with fair prospects of success. Mr. Coleman is a young man who was born in Carter County, Missouri, August 17, 1863. Son of Francis M. and Adaline (Fancher) Coleman, natives of Tennessee. His grandparents, William and Nancy (Hackett) Coleman, were probably natives of the Old North State, moving from there to Tennessee, and thence to Kentucky, where they remained until about 1859. They then moved to Carter County, Missouri, and there passed the closing scenes of their lives. William Coleman was a farmer and held the office of treasurer of Carter County for a number of years. Our subject’s maternal grandparents, Wesley and Celia Fancher, were natives of Tennessee, from whence they came to what is now Carter County nearly fifty years ago. There they passed the remainder of their days, dying before the war. Mr. Fancher was a farmer and millwright. Francis M....

Biography of James M. McGhee

JAMES M. MCGHEE. This gentleman, well known in Carter County, is at present the most efficient county clerk of the same. He came originally from Georgia, his birth occurring December 17, 1854, and he no doubt inherits much of his vim and enterprise from his Scotch-Irish ancestors. His grandfather McGhee was an early pioneer in east Tennessee, and there John F. McGhee, father of subject, was born and reared. He was trained to the duties of the farm at an early age and received but a limited schooling, as his father died when he was young. When grown he moved to Georgia, and there married Miss Nancy Harris, a native of Georgia and a daughter of a pioneer of that State. About 1856 he and his wife moved to Wayne County, Missouri, and settled near where Piedmont is now located, buying a farm and making their home there until 1860. From there they moved to Oregon County, Missouri, and located in the southeast part of the same, where they made their home during the war. In 1865 they moved back to the old home in Wayne County, and in that county Mr. McGhee died in 1881 and his wife in 1884. During the war he was a lieutenant in the Confederate Army for a short time. After living on the farm in Wayne County for some time Mr. McGhee moved to Greenville, the county seat, and was elected to the responsible position of county treasurer. He served one term and was filling his second term when his death occurred. In politics he was a strong Democrat. He was well...

Biography of Hon. A. S. J. Lehr

HON. A. S. J. LEHR. The gentleman whose name heads this sketch is the present representative of Carter County, Missouri, and he is unquestionably one of the ablest and best posted young men in the same. He resides three and a half miles east of Hunter, this county, is a farmer and teacher, and has for a number of years taken a prominent part in political matters. Born in Jacksonport, Arkansas, January 30, 1867, he is the son of Richard H. and Sarah J. (Hardin) Lehr, and the grandson of John F. Lehr, who came from Germany to the United States in an early day. Richard H. Lehr was born in Alabama, but about 1855 came to Carter County, Missouri, and when the war broke out he enlisted in the Confederate Army. He was made captain of a company and served throughout the war. He held a number of offices in Carter County, was an excellent public speaker, and was universally respected. His death occurred in Doniphan, Ripley County, about 1871. Mrs. Lehr was born in Tennessee, and was the daughter of Burgess Hardin, who died in Marshall County, Tennessee They were the parents of four children, as follows: Emma, wife of James A. Croak, a farmer of this county; Clara K., wife of William E. Croak, of Ripley County; John H., a farmer and a teacher and a leading man in the county; and A. S. J., our subject. On a farm in this county our subject grew to manhood, and what time he could get from the duties necessary on the same he attended the common schools....

Biography of Dr. Tolman W. Cotton

DR. TOLMAN W. COTTON. Among those of Carter County, Missouri, who successfully follow the “healing art” as a profession is Dr. Tolman W. Cotton, who was born on the old home place in Reynolds County August 12, 1868. His grandfather, Aaron Cotton, was a native Tennessean, who came to Missouri about 1844, and took up his home in Reynolds County. He was already quite an aged man when he came to this State, and here was passed the remainder of his days. He and his wife, Nancy, reared a large family of children, who grew up honorable men and women. His son, S. W. Cotton, was born in Tennessee in February, 1830, and was about fourteen years of age when he came with his father to this county. Here he finished his growth and assisted his father on the farm until his marriage with Miss Mary A. Barnes, of a prominent family of this county. During the late unpleasantness between the North and South Mr. Cotton enlisted in the Confederate Army and served all through the war with Gens. Price and Marmaduke. He was taken prisoner and was kept in the prisons at St. Louis and Alton. Like his father he selected agricultural pursuits as his occupation in life and in that calling met with fair success. His political views were Democratic. His death occurred in February, 1892, but Mrs. Cotton is still living. To their marriage were born these children: Vetile died young; Lee is a physician at Piedmont, Missouri; Connor is a teacher in the State of Washington, and also a farmer; Jennie, wife of A. Mann,...

Biography of D. H. Allison

D. H. ALLISON. There is nothing which adds so much to the pleasure and convenience of the public as a well-stocked, thoroughly appointed and ably managed livery stable. In such connection we make due reference to the livery establishment of Mr. D. H. Allison, whose reputation in that respect, as well as a trainer, is known throughout the length and breadth of the county. Mr. Allison has made his home and carried on business in Van Buren, Carter County, Missouri, for about two years and has met with well-deserved success. He was born at Irondale, Washington County, Missouri, and was reared in Reynolds County, where his parents, James and Nancy (Johnson) Allison, passed the closing scenes of their lives. The father following farming on Block River and was a soldier in the Confederate Army during the Civil War. Both parents died in 1870. Their children, eleven in number, were named as follows: Jane; Jesse A.; Bettie; Mattie and Peggie died young; Haney; Mary; John; D. H.; Nancy E. and Charles. Our subject received a good, practical education in the common schools of St. Genevieve County, and assisted in farm work at home until eighteen years of age, when he started out to fight his own way in life. He continued working on farms until twenty-one years of age, and then became part owner of a saw mill. This he carried on for a year or two, and after that was engaged in logging for about ten years. He was successful in this, and in about 1893 he came to Van Buren and bought out the livery stable of J....

Biography of John C. Waymeyer

JOHN C. WAYMEYER. Special adaptability to any particular calling in life is the one necessary adjunct to permanent success. No matter the vim and determination which characterizes a man’s start in business, unless he is to the manner born he will find to his sorrow that his line has been falsely cast, and the quicker he draws aside and takes up another calling the better will it be for him. That John C. Waymeyer is especially fitted for the calling that now occupies his attention, that of merchant, cannot be doubted, for he has a large trade which is rapidly increasing. Mr. Waymeyer is a Hoosier by birth, first seeing the light in Davis County February 18, 1851, and the son of William and Henrietta Waymeyer, both natives of Germany. Led by the promises of the Western prairies of this country, the parents sold out and crossed the ocean to America in 1848, settling in Indiana. There the father followed farming until his death in 1861. The mother is still living, and makes her home on a farm eighteen miles east of Van Buren. She came to this county in 1870 and settled where she now lives. She is now the wife of Fred Richenmeyer. Our subject was one of four children and the only one reared, the others dying young. He obtained a liberal education in the schools of Indiana and after leaving school he began clerking in a store in Vincennes. Later he went with his mother and step-father to Carter County, Missouri, and worked on the farm. Three years later, or in 1873, he began working...

Biography of Judge Shadrach Chilton

JUDGE SHADRACH CHILTON. Among the citizens of Van Buren, Carter County, Missouri, who have carved their way from a modest beginning to the rank of its prominent men, not one occupies a more enviable position than Judge Shadrach Chilton. Possessed of excellent ability, grafted upon a stock of sturdy honesty, he also possesses a goodly degree of those personal attributes that spring from a kindly heart, an honest purpose, a broad liberality and a fraternal sympathy. He is a descendant of one of the earliest pioneers in the county, John Chilton, who was born in Ray County, Tennessee, on May 9, 1805. The latter was a son of Thomas and Susan (Inmann) Chilton. Thomas Chilton was born in the State of Virginia, and at an early date moved to Tennessee. There he married and resided until 1816, when he came to Madrid County, Missouri. Two years later he moved to Carter County and settled on the Current River, being the first man to settle that high up. He improved a farm at the mouth of Henpeck Creek, and as he delighted in hunting and fishing, his table was seldom lacking meat. A few years later he moved to Shannon County and carried on a mill until his death in 1863. He was a soldier in the Creek Indian War in Tennessee, and in politics was a Democrat. He reared nine sons and one daughter, as follows: Clementine, wife of Zimri Carter; Mark, died when a young man; John, the father of our subject; Charles T.; Thomas; Shadrach; Joshua; William; James and Francis M. The father of our subject was...
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