Location: Carter County MO

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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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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...

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Biography of Anderson Coleman

ANDERSON COLEMAN. It is a pleasure to chronicle the history of a man whose life has been one of honor and usefulness, and although he is considerable past the zenith of his career, Mr. Coleman has accumulated sufficient means to pass his declining years in peace and plenty. He is one of the old pioneers of Carter County, Missouri, to which section he came in 1858, and is honored and esteemed throughout its length and breadth. Mr. Coleman was born in Tennessee, October, 14, 1822, and the son of William and Betsey (Vaughan) Coleman, both of whom died in North Carolina. The father was a soldier in the War of 1812. The grandfather, Spencer Coleman, was a soldier in the Revolutionary War. His ancestors came from England to America prior to the Revolutionary War, and settled in Virginia. Anderson Coleman was one of eleven children and when a young man removed to North Carolina. Later he returned to Tennessee, and in 1858 he came to Carter County, making the journey with ox teams, and settled in Carter County, on a farm near Van Buren, where he resided seventeen years. For some time during his residence in Carter County he held the office of constable, elected in 1866 or 1867. From there he moved to Wayne County and later to Reynolds County. All his life he has tilled the soil...

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Biography of William W. Coleman

WILLIAM W. COLEMAN. Some men are possessed of such remarkable energy and activity that they are not content to do business in as extensive a manner as their competitors, but strive onward with restless zeal to excel them all and place their own establishment foremost in the ranks of industry. Men of this kind are valuable citizens, and are always foremost in advancing the public welfare. William W. Coleman is a representative man of this class. He conducts a first-class mercantile business in Van Buren, Carter County, Missouri, and this establishment is a worthy example of what energy and ambition can perform. Mr. Coleman is a native of North Carolina, born January 4, 1848, and the son of Anderson and Martha (Allen) Coleman (see sketch of father). Our subject was one of a family of children, as follows: Ambrose B., who died during the Civil War; Cynthia, deceased, was the wife of Shadrach Chilton; W. W., subject; Jas. Spencer, who died in 1882, left a family; Isaac, died during the war; Emilla J., died about the time of the breaking out of the war; Amanda, died young; Absalom, is a farmer of Carter County; and John, who died in 1887. Our subject passed his early life on a farm, and received limited educational advantages on account of the breaking out of the Civil War. When he became a man...

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Biography of A. K. Oliver

A. K. OLIVER. Eminently worthy of mention in this work is A. K. Oliver who has devoted his life to farming, and now has a comfortable home and a fine estate in Pike Creek Valley. He is a native of Smith County, Tennessee, and there first opened his eyes on the light of day in 1825. A son of Bluford and Polly (Link) Oliver, natives of Virginia, who were born in 1782 and 1784 respectively, and were reared and married in the State of their birth. They eventually removed to Smith County, Tennessee, and in that section they resided until their respective deaths in 1841 and in 1870. Mr. Oliver was a successful farmer and was a soldier in the War of 1812. The maternal grandfather, John Link, spent his entire life in the Old Dominion. To the union of Bluford and Polly Oliver eight children were born: Narcissa, the widow of John Denney, of Oregon County, Missouri; Banks, who died in Smith County, Tennessee, in 1876; Warner, who died in Oregon County, Missouri, in 1859; Susan is the wife of L. B. Cheak, of Smith County, Tennessee; Letha, died in early childhood; A. K., the subject of this sketch; Martha, of Tennessee; Elizabeth, also of that State. The early life of our subject was spent on the old home farm in Tennessee, but he unfortunately received very little...

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Biography of Hon. Henderson Massie

HON. HENDERSON MASSIE, whose fine farm in Pike Creek Valley, Carter County, is an object of admiration to the section, came originally from the Buckeye State, his birth occurring in Jackson County in 1833. His parents, Lewis and Sarah (Mackley) Massie, were natives of Virginia and Ohio respectively, the father born in 1797, and the mother in 1807. Mr. Massie came to Ohio when a young man, married there, and there made his home for many years. Late in life he moved to Carter County, Missouri, and here his wife died in 1875, and he in 1888 when about ninety years of age. They were members of the United Brethren Church until they came to Missouri, when they became Methodists. Mr. Massie followed farming all his life, and was an active, industrious and honest citizen. Aside from farming he was also in the iron works for some time. His father, Moses Massie, probably died in Ohio, and our subject has no recollection of him. He and his wife came from Virginia at an early day, and were the parents of a large family. Grandfather, John Mackley, came from Pennsylvania to Ohio, and died in Jackson County when his grandson, Henderson, was a small boy. He was also a farmer. One of his sons, David Mackley, was a prominent lawyer, and for some time edited the Jackson Standard at Jackson,...

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Biography of Harrison A. Holland

HARRISON A. HOLLAND, of the firm J. Holland & Co., merchants and farmers of McDonald, Carter County, Missouri, is widely and favorably known, both as a business man of great capacity and unquestioned standing and integrity, and a prosperous farmer and honorable citizen. He came originally from Lawrence County, Tennessee, his birth occurring in 1854, and is a son of Thomas and Catherine (McCaskill) Holland, natives of Alabama and Tennessee respectively, and both born in the year 1827. Mr. and Mrs. Holland first met in Lawrence County, Tennessee, whither their parents had moved, and there they were married. In that county Mr. Holland spent the remainder of his days, engaged in farming, and there died in 1870. He took no part in the Civil War. His father, Harrison Holland, was probably a native of North Carolina, but went to Alabama and there tilled the soil until his death. Our subject’s maternal grandfather, Allen McCaskill, was born in North Carolina, but removed from there to Tennessee, and thence to Shannon County, Missouri, in 1855,and there died in 1868, when about eighty-four years of age. The mother of our subject came to Carter County, Missouri, in 1871, and there died in June, 1888. Her children, seven in number, were named as follows: William, of Texas County, Missouri; Rebecca, single, died in Carter County; Harrison A., subject; James; John; Matthew, died young,...

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