Collection: History of Greene County Missouri

Biographical Sketch of Alfred A. Lowdermilk, M. D.

Dr. Lowdermilk is the son of William and Martha (Rhodes) Lowdermilk, and was born in Greene county, Tennessee, June 24, 1848. In 1856, his parents moved to Sangamon county, Illinois, taking young Alfred with them. At fourteen years old, he started out to make his own living and learned the trade of tinsmith, which he followed till he was twenty-one years old. He then, in 1869, entered and took a course of lectures in the Louisville Medical College. The next year he began the practice in Vernon and Barton counties, this State, thus acquiring the means to complete his professional education. Returning to Louisville in 1875, he took a second course of medical lectures, graduating therefrom in 1876. Soon after this he began the practice in Illinois and continued till 1880, when he located at Bois D’Arc in this county, where he practiced actively till the fall of 1882. His failing health there necessitated his quitting active practice, and he opened a drug store, and has done only office practice since then. Dr. Lowdermilk has been a member of the I. O. O. F. lodge since he was twenty-one years old in which he has filled various offices. He is also a member of the Grand Lodge. February 13, 1866, he was married to Miss Lizzie Burton, of Scott county. She died April 13, 1870, leaving two children—Martin and...

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Biography of Dr. Joseph M’Adoo

The subject of this sketch was born in Donegal county, Ireland, August 9, 1832. His parents were Thomas and Esther Rankin McAdoo, and Joseph was the oldest of six children, four brothers and two sisters. He came to America with his parents in 1838, locating near West Greenville, Mercer county, Pennsylvania, and there resided till he completed his education, which was partially obtained in the common schools of the county, and completed at Westminister College, and at Philadelphia. He began teaching school at eighteen, teaching in several districts, where others failed because of bad order in the school room. Young McAdoo’s executive ability enabled him to bring order out of chaos and to pass class after class through the advanced arithmetical course in the short term of three months. For four years he carried on coal and ore mining operations quite successfully, but quit to finish his education. He located in Tiffin, Ohio, in 1856, where be began the successful practice of medicine. During the civil war, he was, a part of the time, connected with the Ohio National Home Guards, and, in 1864, was chosen first lieutenant of Co. A, 164th Reg. Ohio Vol. Infantry, and at the close of his term, was complimented by President Lincoln. In 1865 he came to Missouri in search of a dryer climate, locating at Huntsville, Randolph county, where he remained till...

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Biography of John L. M’Craw, Sr.

Mr. McCraw was born in Hawkins county, Tenn., in 1808, where he was reared and educated. In 1886 he married Elizabeth H. Kenner of the same county, and the same year he immigrated to Greene county, Mo., and bought the farm in Taylor township, where he lived and died. In farming and stock-rearing he encountered all the hardships incident to pioneer life. The stock did well upon the prairie grasses, and sheep and pigs found natural enemies in the wolves that infested the country at the time. Mills were few and far between, coffee and biscuits luxuries that could be only indulged in Sunday mornings and when “company” came. The clothing for the family was all made from the raw material by the ladies of the household, Mr. McCraw, himself, making the shoes from leather tanned by a neighbor. Game abounded, but he never killed but one deer, and that with his Jacob-staff while out surveying. He was elected county surveyor in 1839 and in 1840 surveyed the eastern boundary of the county. In 1849 he visited his parents in Tennessee, making, the entire trip upon horseback. His wife died in 1855, leaving him six children, four boys and two girls, all of whom are yet living. Two children, a son and daughter, died before her. At the beginning of the rebellion he espoused the Union cause, having previously...

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Biography of William M’Kerrall

This well-known subject was born in Orange county, N. C., June 17,1824. At sixteen he received the appointment to West Point Military Academy, and entered same class with Gen. Hancock. He was compelled to leave school, however, on account of ill health, and returned to North Carolina. There he entered Caldwell Institute, John Wilson, D.D., president, and took a regular collegiate course. At the outbreak of the Mexican war, young McKerall volunteered and was elected first lieutenant of Co. E of the North Carolina regiment, which company he served with during the war, latterly as acting captain. On one occasion, Lieut. McKerall commanded a detachment on escort, and conducted a supply train 180 miles without loss or mishap, except guerilla skirmishes. He was introduced to Gen. Taylor, and made his report on the same day the Missouri volunteers under Col. Doniphan were returning from the arduous campaign in New Mexico. After the battle of Buena Vista, his regiment encamped 14 months on the plains there, and was subsequently garrisoned at Saltillo, where Lieut. McK. Studied Spanish under Dr. Gregg, of St. Louis. Still later, he served as regimental inspector and commissary. He was honorably discharged at Old Point Comfort, Va. He then settled in Louisiana, where he studied law. In 1850, he went to Texas, locating near San Augustine (East Texas), where he practiced law, and there joined the...

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Biography of Samuel Henry Melcher

Samuel Henry Melcher is the son of Woodbury Melchor, Esq:, and a grandson of Capt. Samuel B. French, was born in Gilmanton, N. H., October 30, 1828. Was educated at Gilford and Gilmanton academies; graduated at medical department, Dartmouth College, in Grafton county, N, H.; then in Boston, Mass., until 1859, when he traveled South and through Texas; and at the close of that year, settled in Potosi, Washington county, Missouri. On the breaking out of the war, he offered his services at once to Gen. Lyon, at St. Louis arsenal; and was mustered in as assistant surgeon 5th Regt. Mo. Vols. (three months), May 7, 1861. Was with his regiment at the battles of Carthage, July 5, 1861; Dug Spring, August 2, 1861; Wilson’s Creek, August 10, 1861, where he was the last officer on the field after the forces fell back, and brought off the body of Gen. Lyon and delivered it to Gen. Schofield the same night, as narrated on other pages of this volume. By order of Gen. Schofield, he remained a prisoner in the hands of the Confederates, to take care of the Union wounded. Was in Springfield when the “Fremont Body Guard” made their terrific charge, and attended the wounded on both sides; was furnished with wagons by Gen. Sigel, and moved the wounded in all that region to Rolla, thence by rail...

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Biography of Lilburn H. Murray

Mr. Murray is the son of John and Sarah (Luttree) Murray, and was born in Crawford county, Missouri, September, 1834. His parents came to Greene county, Mo., and settled seven miles northwest of Springfield, where they lived one year and then moved to Grand Prairie, where L. H. was reared and educated. At the age of twenty-one, he went to California, where he was engaged in the stock and mercantile business for about ten years. He returned to Springfield, Mo., in September, 1866, and soon went into the hardware business. The firm was McGregor & Murray for some five years, and McGregor, Murray & Noe, until 1876. During a part of this time he lived in the country upon what is now the Judge Cowan farm. In 1871 he was elected mayor of Springfield, and in 1874 was elected to the Legislature, being the only Democratic representative Greene had had since 1858. He has been a councilman from both the Second and Fourth wards. He took active part in the building of the Gulf railroad. John M. Richardson graded the road to Ash Grove and it lay for several years unironed, until Mr. Murray, H. E. Havens and Maj. Sheppard bought the roadbed and organized the Springfield and Western Missouri Railroad Company. They then took into the company, L. A. D. Crenshaw, G. D. Milligan, Judge Ralph Walker, C....

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Biographical Sketch of John Glenn Newbill

The eldest son of T. G. Newbill is a native of Southwest Missouri, his birth-place being in the northeast corner of what is now Webster county. His childhood was passed on his father’s farm, two and one-half miles west of the city of Springfield. He was educated principally in the district school and schools of Springfield, and studied three years under the tutorship of Dr. Wm. V. Allen, formerly of Bates county, Mo. For several years, while prosecuting his studies, he alternately worked on the farm and taught in the public schools of Greene and Bates counties. Returning in 1876 from a two years’ trip to the Pacific coast, he afterwards engaged in the business of journalism. At present he is the editor of the Springfield-Express, one of the leading and most reliable Democratic papers in the Southwest, in which capacity he has labored with untiring energy since the establishment of the paper on the 1st day of April, 1881. He is also secretary of the Democratic Central Committee of Greene county. He was married on the 4th day of the preceding January, to Miss Carrie Leona Rhoades, daughter of B. T. and Ottilie Rhoades, of Montgomery county, Illinois. Mr. and Mrs. Newbill are the parents of one child, Albert Glenn Newbill, born to them February 1st...

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Biography of Dr. Thomas Jefferson Bailey

Dr. Bailey was a native of Kentucky, born in Lincoln county, January 17, 1803, whith his father, John Bailey, had removed with his family from Virginia. There the father died, and Thomas J. grew up to manhood. He read medicine at Danville under the able preceptor ship of Drs. Smith and McDowell, till he was prepared for practice. Prior to removing to Missouri, in 1828, he married Miss Harriet Sproul, a native of the same county as himself. He settled first in Ralls county, this State, where he practiced medicine till 1837, removing thence to Springfield, when that town was a mere hamlet. Both himself and wife were well pleased, and, resolving to stay, located on a forty-acre tract between the two cities of Springfield. Here he began a most successful professional career, and for nearly a quarter of a century ministered to the sick in his plain, simple way that built him the large practice out of which he realized a fortune. His sympathetic disposition and moderate charges made him beloved of all, no one ever complaining of excessive bills. His plain style won confidence, and he was never a man to judge others by dress or outward appearance; but always looked within to find the man. He thoroughly believed that ” ‘Twas not in rank or wealth or state, but ‘get up and get’ that makes men great.” Dr....

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Biography of Tyree Glenn Newbill

Father of the John Glenn Newbill, was born in Franklin county, Virginia, May 17th, 1882. He was married December 1st, 1846, to Nancy A. Johnson, only daughter of James M. and Elizabeth Johnson, and in the following year removed to Southwest Missouri, locating on the farm now owned by Dr. H. H. Lea, in the northeast corner of the territory now known as Webster county. Three years afterward he removed to Greene county, where he purchased the fine farm of Samuel McClelland, two and one-half miles west of Springfield. Here he engaged largely in agriculture and stock-raising, and was one of the foremost men in the county in the importation and breeding, of the different kinds of fine stock. In the spring of 1854 he took a drove of cattle and wagon train across the plains to the Golden State, returning home by way of Panama and New York in the following autumn. As will be seen elsewhere in this work, he was twice elected president of the Southwest District Agricultural and Mechanical Association for the two years prior to the war, at which time that association stood in the front ranks of similar institutions of the kind in the West. He was also prominently connected with the association as a member of the board of directors from its inception up to that time. In the political campaign of...

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Biography of Dr. Beverly A. Barrett

Dr. Barrett is the son of John S. and Margaret (Patterson) Barrett, and was born in St. Genevieve county, January 8, 1826. The father was also a physician, was a Virginian, and emigrated to this State in 1811, and was a member of the first Missouri General Assembly. Beverly A. was the sixth child of a family of ten children, and had the advantages of a common school education in his native county, subsequently attending a seminary taught by Fox and Davis at Fredericktown  He began the study of his profession in 1845, and after two years’ close application to medical lore, began the practice in Dallas county, Mo., where he remained till 1858, removing thence to Springfield, his present home. In 1864 he moved to St. Louis, and remained there till 1869, he moved back to Springfield which has been his constant place of adolescence then. Dr. Barrett has been in the active practice for thirty-five years, and has done as much labor as any physician in the Southwest. He is a member of the Masonic fraternity, and was at one time master of the lodge. He is also a member of the M. E. Church South and has been for about twenty-five years. Politically, he is a Democrat, and always acts with that party. He is a member of the State Medical Association, and keeps well up in...

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Biography of John O’Day, Esq.

Among those who have given Greene county its enviable reputation for possessing men of high character, large brain, and sterling worth and ability, is Mr. John O’Day, one of the leading members of the Greene county bar. Mr. O’Day was born in the city of Limerick, Ireland, November 18, 1843. He was brought in infancy with his father’s family to America, his parents settling at first in the State of New York. When he was about 12 years of age the family removed to Juneau county, Wisconsin, where John was educated in the common schools and at an academy. Arriving at the years of maturity, and developing remarkable talent for that profession, he engaged in the study of law, under Judge Windsor, of Maustin, Wisconsin. In 1862 he attended the law school at Albany, N. Y., and in May, 1864, he was admitted to the bar at Now Lisbon, Wisconsin, before Hon. Geo. W. Cate, afterward a prominent member of Congress. Leaving Wisconsin in September, 1865 Mr. O’Day settled in Springfield, February 14 following, and has here since remained, engaged in the active practice of his profession, in which he has been extraordinarily successful. For years he was one of the leading criminal lawyers in the Southwest, and now is regarded as standing in the front rank of the corporation attorneys of the country. Since the year 1870 he...

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