Location: Winona MIssouri

Biography of George M. Follett

GEORGE M. FOLLETT. The creditable condition of business life in West Plains, Missouri, is due in a great extent to the enterprise, energy and intelligence of her prominent merchants and manufacturers. Among these may be mentioned the firm of Holt & Follett, manufacturers. George M. Follett was born and reared just outside of the city of New York, his birth occurring February 25, 1852, son of D. B. and Eliza (Mason) Follett. The father was a farmer and resided on the Delaware River. Our subject passed his boyhood and youth on the old home farm and received but limited educational advantages. Early in life he started in the lumber business, working in the lumber fields of West Pennsylvania and those of Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota, and continued there until 1883, when he came to south Missouri. Here he took a position with the South Missouri Land Company, and had charge of a planing mill at Willow Springs. A year later he took charge of the Burnham Mills as engineer. He is a practical engineer and electrician. He remained at the Burnham Mills until September, 1888, and then went to Winona, Missouri, where he took a position with the Ozark Lumber Company, holding the same one year. Following this he bought a saw mill south of Winona and continued this until 1891, when he came to West Plains and opened...

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Biography of Jefferson Beauregard Searcy

JEFFERSON BEAUREGARD SEARCY, county clerk of Shannon County, and one of the most popular officials of the county, is a product of Boone County, Missouri, born December 30, 1858, and the son of George N. and Amanda J. (Cochram) Searcy, both natives of Boone County, Missouri In this county the parents were married, and here passed the remainder of their days, dying when comparatively young people, the father in 1865, when thirty-three years of age, and the mother in 1868, when thirty years of age. The grandfather, Lemuel Searcy, was an early settler of Boone County, Missouri, from Kentucky. The Cochram family also came here at an early date, the grandfather, William Cochram, locating here as early as 1812. He was also from Kentucky. The father of our subject was a teacher in Lathrop Academy, and just prior to the war he was in the University at Columbia. He was a graduate of the University of Missouri in 1856 or 1857, and was a man of unusual intelligence. After the death of his parents our subject was taken by an uncle, B. F. Cochram, and by him was reared. In 1876 he went to Boonville and attended Kemper’s School three years, after which he returned to Boone County and attended the State University part of two years. From there he went to Audrain County, Missouri, and after remaining there...

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Biography of Franklin Marion Chapin

FRANKLIN MARION CHAPIN. This prominent citizen of Winona, Missouri, owes his nativity to Overton County, Tennessee, where he first saw the light in 1837, his parents being Paul Stillman and Sarah (Harrison) Chapin (for parents’ history see sketch of John A. Chapin and John W. Garrett). He was the tenth of twelve children born to them, the other members of the family being: Mary (Garrett), of Howell County; Hiram, who died in Los Angeles, Cal.; Paul Stillman, who died in Hopkins County, Tex.; Elias H., who died in Howell County; Martha, who died in Overton County, Tennessee; John A., of Howell County; Josiah, who died in Randolph County, Arkansas; Silas J., a resident of Platt County, Missouri; Sarah, the twin sister of Silas, died in childhood; and Alsie A. and Catherine, of Howell County. The subject of this sketch received the rearing and education of the average farmer’s boy of his day; that is, he labored early and late on the farm and received very meager educational advantages, but later in life, when opportunity offered, he applied himself to his books and became a fair scholar. In 1851, at the age of thirteen, he removed to what is now Howell County, Missouri, and at the age of sixteen he began farming on his own responsibility. On the 19th of August, 1860, he was married in Greene County, Missouri, to...

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Biography of John F. Church

JOHN F. CHURCH, senior member of the well-known firm of Church & Kissel, Winona, Missouri, is one who has built by years of industry and good management a business that is recognized as being one of the best of its kind in the country, a credit to Winona and Shannon County. Mr. Church is a man who possesses the inherent qualities requisite to commercial success, in a very high degree, and in his chosen calling has attained an eminent position among his compeers, and the high regard of his fellow-citizens, entirely through his own efforts and sterling personal qualities. Mr. Church was born in St. Genevieve, Missouri, in 1863, while the war cloud hung darkly over the nation, and was a son of Sylvester Church who was born in Illinois. The father came to southeast Missouri when a young man and located in the iron district. He was a practical engineer and operated machinery for the different iron mines until his death, which occurred in Crawford County in 1879, when he was about fifty years of age. John F. Church grew to manhood in the mining district and when fifteen years of age commenced learning the blacksmith’s trade in Dent County, Missouri, at the Nova Scotia Iron Works. After serving an apprenticeship of six years he went to New Mexico and engaged in different occupations, black smithing, real estate,...

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Biography of George Washington McCaskill

GEORGE WASHINGTON MCCASKILL. This gentleman is one of the leading farmers and stockmen of Shannon County, Missouri, and in the development of this section he has done heroic work, for here he was born in 1856, and has all his life devoted his attention to agriculture. His parents, William and Mary (Blassingame) McCaskill, were born in Giles County, Tennessee, in 1827 and 1833, respectively, and were reared and married there. In 1855 they came to Shannon County, Missouri, and located in the woods several miles from any other settlement. Here he improved a good farm and lived until about 1879, when he removed to Texas County and there died soon after, in 1881, having been a very thorough going and successful man of affairs. He was for three years a soldier in the Confederate Army, for thirteen months was with Gen. Price, was with him on his raid through Missouri, and was at one time captured. His father, Allen McCaskill, was a South Carolinian by birth, but in 1855 he also came from Tennessee to this section, and was here called from life when about eighty-four years of age, his wife’s death occurring here at about the age of ninety. He was of Scotch descent and was a soldier of the War of 1812. The maternal grandfather, James Blassingame, was for a long time a resident of Tennessee, but...

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Biography of John C. McCaskill

JOHN C. MCCASKILL. This prominent citizen is one who has built byyears of industry and good management a business that is recognized as being one of the best in the vicinity. In the life of Mr. McCaskill we have a character representing integrity, industry and unconquerable will that overcomes all obstructions, which brings success under all circumstances; at least so it has been with him. Mr. McCaskill was born in Winona in 1860, and is a son of William and Mary (Blossingame) McCaskill, natives of Giles County, Tennessee, the father born in 1827 and the mother in 1833. There they were reared and married, and there they made their home until 1855, when they came to Shannon County and located in the woods a mile above where Winona now stands. Mr. McCaskill cleared his farm of 380 acres, made many improvements, and became a substantial and much esteemed citizen. About 1879 he moved to Texas County, and there his death occurred in 1881, when about fifty-four years of age. He was a self-made man, a public-spirited citizen, and fought in the Confederate Army all through the war, partici-pating in many battles. In politics he advocated the principles of the Democratic party. Mrs. McCaskill is still living and resides in Texas County. They reared nine children, and of these John C. was sixth in order of birth. He received a...

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Biography of Stephen Birlew

STEPHEN BIRLEW is a native Tennessean, born in Smith County, January 1, 1842, the son of John and Wilbrey (Robinson) Birlew, the father a native of North Carolina and the mother of Tennessee. John Birlew was a young man when he went to Tennessee, and he there met and married Miss Robinson, who later moved with him to Christian County, Kentucky There they resided until 1853, when they came to Missouri and located three miles east of the present town of Winona, in the woods, then Pike Creek Valley, and here Mr. Birlew died in the valley in 1872, when about sixty-two years of age. Mrs. Birlew is still living and is now seventy years of age. She finds a comfortable home with her children. Mr. Birlew was justice of the peace for years, and at the time of his death was county treasurer. Farming and blacksmithing were his principal occupations during life, and he was unusually successful. Mr. Birlew was a Union man during the war and was for the Constitution. In politics he was a Democrat. Mrs. Birlew holds membership in the Methodist Episcopal Church. Their family consisted of ten children, of whom our subject was second in order of birth. Stephen secured a fair education in Shannon County, and in 1861, when nineteen years of age, he enlisted in the Missouri State Guards, Confederate Army, but...

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