ROBERT S. SUTTON. This substantial and extremely well-known citizen of Eminence Township, Shannon County, Missouri, has devoted his life to farming and stockraising, and what he does not know about these two branches of human endeavor is hardly worthy of consideration. He owes his nativity to Washington County, Missouri, where he was born in 1858, a son of William J. and Ellen (McClowney) Sutton, natives of Kentucky and Washington County, Missouri, the birth of the former occurring in 1831.
When a boy William J. Sutton came with his parents to Washington County, Missouri, where he married and lived until after the war, when he took up his abode in Shannon County, and here resided for ten or twelve years, after which he returned to Washington County, and there still lives. He has been an industrious, honest and hard-working farmer, and has been successful in the accumulation of a competency. During the war he served over three years as wagon master in the Eighth Missouri Infantry, with Price’s army and was in the Missouri raid. He is now living with his second wife, who was Malinda Highley, by whom he had three children: Ida, wife of Charley Edmonds, of Crystal City, Missouri; Maggie, wife of Charley Lucas, of Washington County, and William. The paternal grand-father, Robert Sutton, came from Kentucky to Washington County, Missouri, in an early day and here spent the rest of his life, dying about 1854, one of the wealthiest farmers of Washington County. He was of Irish-French descent. Four of his brothers located in Washington County. Valentine became prominent there and in Texas County, and he and his brothers were farmers. The maternal grandfather, Robert McClowney, died near Potosi in Washington County, a well-to-do farmer, and his wife died there also. They were of French origin and were early settlers of Missouri.
The subject of this sketch was left motherless when he was an infant, and was the only child born to his father’s first marriage. His early life was spent on a farm, and like many other lads of his day in Missouri he received a limited common-school education. At the age of twenty-two years he began doing for himself, and in 1874 came with his father to Shannon County, and here he was married in 1882 to Eva, daughter of Frank and Margaret Chilton, who were born in Shannon County and Tennessee, respectively. Mr. Chilton spent his entire life in his native county, and here passed from life, but his widow still survives. Mrs. Sutton was born in this county and has never been outside its boundaries. She has borne her husband five children: Alice, Maggie, Nova, Grover and an infant unnamed. For two years after his marriage Mr. Sutton rented land on Current River, and for the past ten years has resided on his present farm, seven miles northwest of Winona, where he has an excellent tract of land comprising 160 acres, of which 118 acres are under cultivation. Although he has resided on this place but a comparatively short time, it is remarkably well improved, and Mr. Sutton is with justice considered a thrifty and pushing farmer. He is a careful and shrewd manager and has been quite extensively engaged in feeding and shipping stock, which he has found to be a profitable business. He has always been a Democrat and cast his first vote for Hancock in 1880, and although he is by no means a politician, yet he takes great interest in local politics. The names of his father’s brothers and sisters were as follows: Jane, who died in Washington County, the wife of William Smith; Frank, who served in the State Militia during the war, died in Washington County; Margaret is the wife of John Taylor, of Washington County; Lizzie is the wife of Jesse Marks, of Ste. Genevieve County; John is a prominent farmer and stock dealer of Washington County. All these children were born in Washington County, Missouri, with the exception of William J. Sutton, who was born in Kentucky.