Louis Houck.

A history of Missouri from the earliest explorations and settlements until the admission of the state into the union (Volume 1) online

. (page 44 of 46)
Online LibraryLouis HouckA history of Missouri from the earliest explorations and settlements until the admission of the state into the union (Volume 1) → online text (page 44 of 46)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook

with his slaves. In 1802 he was joined by his brother, William,
Junior, who had first settled in Illinois, but, as he was the owner of
twelve slaves, crossed the Mississippi in 1798 and took up his resi-
dence on Gabourie creek, near Ste. Genevieve, and moved from there
to this neighborhood. Richard also settled here in 1802, and in 1803
Mrs. Sarah Murphy, widow of William Murphy, Senior, with the
remainder of the family, Isaac, Jesse, Dubart, Joseph, and one or two
daughters, and some negro slaves, also moved from Tennessee to
upper Louisiana. She made the journey down the Tennessee river
and up the Mississippi in a flat-boat with her family and servants, and
after much hardship and peril reached Ste. Genevieve; on Jan-
uary 10, 1804, she arrived at the home of her son, Richard, then
located not far from the present site of Farmington. Manifestly
Mrs. Murphy was a woman of great energy and ability. Within three
years after her arrival she organized and taught the first Sunday
school west of the Mississippi river. She was a sister of David
Barton, elected first United States senator from Missouri. Michael

the Terre Blue prior to this time; Robert Adams (1803); Elijah Benton (1803),
brother-in-law of Francois Wideman, settled fifteen miles in front of the settle-
ments on promise of Commandant Valle, made to Wideman, that all his con-
nections he could induce to come to upper Louisiana might settle on the
frontier; Dr. Jesse Benton (1803), a physician, settled on the west branch of
Big river, a brother or relative of Thomas H. Benton, afterward returned to
Tennessee; George Cunningham; Isaac Doghead (1803), a German on this
river opposite Pratte's Spring branch, most probably related to John Doghead
who was an early settler in the St. Louis district; Elias Austin Elliott (1803);
William North (1803); John Michael Rober (1803), also on the Joachim and
Mill creek; Michael Rafer (1803), on this river and Joachim, may be Robert;
James J. Withrow (1803); Francois Grondon (or Grondine), likely from Kas-
kaskia, on Mine fork of this river; Louis Self.


and Joseph Hart, who claimed to be Catholics, settled in this neigh-
borhood in 1800, and Benjamin Petit in 1801 opened a farm on the
north fork of the St. Francois river. He was a large slave owner,
and he and his son, John L. Petit, traded up and down the St. Francois
river. « James Campbell, it seems, worked for him, but. afterward
moved to Louisiana. Jonathan Dosley built a grist-mill in 1801 in
this settlement, and his widow, Mary, lived here and operated this mill
in 1802. 72 Samuel Pierceall lived near there on Flat river in 1803,
so also Jacob Doggett, who discovered " Doggett's Mine." Frederick
Connor, afterward a resident on the Joachim, lived on the Terre Blue
in this same locality prior to 1799 ; John Anderson, called John Crow
Anderson, lived on the Terre Blue in 1798, and in Bellevue valley in
1803. Jacob Mosteller, apparently a German, lived on Hazle Run
of Terre Blue in 1803, was a hatter by trade and carried on his busi-
ness on his farm. 73

Nathaniel Cook in 1799 settled several miles southwest of the
Murphy settlement, and ever since that locality has been known as the
"Cook" settlement. Nathaniel Cook was a native of Kentucky,
and after the acquisition of Louisiana by the United States, occupied
a conspicuous position in the early history of Missouri. He was a

72 In this Murphy settlement on the St. Francois we find George Silas (1798); Christopher
Anthony (1799) at Ousley or Housley's settlement; James Carnavan (1799); James Dotson (or
Dodson) (1799), received a grant with James Carnavan to farm and raise cattle; in 1801 Dodson
was also on the Mississippi; William Dillon (1799); Jonathan Owsley (or Housley) came to the
country in 1797, and settled on the St. Francois in 1799; Thomas Ring (1799); Pierre Veriat
(1800) came from Lorraine, France, married Rhoda Christy of Virginia in 1801; John Beene
(Bean) (1800); Thomas P. Bedford (1800), cultivated land here awhile and then abandoned it, in
1801 or 1802 sold to pay his debts and bought by Girouard, afterward his wife married a man
named Leposte; William Crawford or Crafford (1800); Joseph Frederick (1800), afterward at
Pointe Coupee, in lower Louisiana; Joab Line (1800), from Tennessee, had two children and two
orphan children, settled about four miles from the river on the north fork, next to the Murphy
claim, and had a controversy with Murphy as to the boundary of his land which was brought up
before De Luziere, the commandant of New Bourbon; Murphy secured most of his land and crop;
While living here Line's wife eloped in 1S02. — American State Papers, 2 Public Land, page 509.
Line also on Wolf creek; John Clements (1801), a witness as to events on this river; John
Kephart, or Capheart, a German, settled on the north fork of the St. Francois, he came fnm North
Carolina. Mathew Logan (1801), at Housley's settlement; Louis Martin (1801), on this river
and in St. Louis district; John Mathews, from North Carolina, settled on the north fork of this
river in 1802, at that time known as Housley's settlement; John Reaves (1801), says in 1804 on
account of the Osage Indians, the inhabitants were driven together for a common defense, and
that they raised a common crop in that year; Peter Burns, Senior (1802), was scared off his prop-
erty by Osage Indians into the settlement. John Mathews says at that time these Indians com-
mitted several depredations and forced the people for safety to the settlements, particularly the
women; Patrick Estes, came with Murphy from Tennessee and settled on this river in 1802;
James James, lived here but in 1803 sold out and moved to Cold Water, St. Louis district; Robert
Burrus (1803), seems to have been familiar with settlements on this river; James Crawford (1803),
brother of Thompson, moved to Cape Girardeau in 1805; Thompson "Crawford was an early
resident; Jacob Chambers (1803), at Housley's settlement, and on Callaway's Mill creek; Adam
and William Johnson (1803); Robert A, Logan (1803); John Mann (1803); John Taylor (1803);
Henry Burley; Charles Logan.

73 On Terre Blue, a branch of Big river, we find Joseph Mosteller (iygo);
Robert Estes dit Eastrige (1801), lived at a spring on this branch; Abraham
Parker (1801); John A. Henton (1802); John Andrews (1802); John August
(1802); Jean Burk, Sr. (1799), a blacksmith (forgeron), prior to this time in
Ste. Genevieve.


deputy surveyor in this district, and appointed one of the first judges
of the Court of Common Pleas and Quarter Sessions at Ste. Genevieve,
and in 181 2 was major in Dodge's regiment of Missouri rangers, and
in 1820 elected a member of the Constitutional convention. During
many years he was a prominent political character. John B. Cook,
one of the first judges of the Supreme court of Missouri, was his
brother. Daniel P. Cook, the first representative in Congress of the
state of Illinois, and very conspicuous as an early leader of the anti-
slavery party of that state, was another brother. Cook county, in
which the city of Chicago is located, was named in honor of Daniel
P. Cook. 74

The beginning of a settlement where Fredericktown is now
situated was made in 1800, but that settlement was then known as
St. Michael. Here a grant of four hundred arpens was made to

74 The Cook family originally from England, came to Virginia in the early
part of the 18th century. About ten years after the close of the Revolutionary
War, John Dillard Cook moved to Scott county, Kentucky, where he lived as a
thrifty farmer. His eldest son, Colonel Nathaniel Cook, went from Kentucky
to Missouri in 1797. Before leaving his native state he was in some skirmishes
with the Indians. He served in the second war for Independence, and com-
manded a regiment at the battle of Lundy's Lane. He was elected a member
from Madison county of the Constitutional convention in 1820. At the election
held August 23, 182 1, Colonel Cook was a prominent candidate for lieutenant-
governor, being defeated by a small plurality. He was a formidable opponent
of Thomas H. Benton for the United States Senate the first time that distin-
guished man was elected. In 1802 he married Honore Madden, daughter of
Thomas Madden, the Spanish deputy surveyor for the Ste. Genevieve district.
The only surviving member of Colonel Cook's family now (1905) is Mrs.
Letitia Frissell, of Oak Ridge, Missouri. Daniel P. Cook, a younger brother
of Colonel Cook, after he was admitted to the bar removed from Kentucky
to Illinois, and was identified with the early history of that state. He was
supreme judge of the state, and at one time, probably during J. Q. Adams'
administration, was bearer of dispatches to the English court. He was also
a member of Congress from Illinois. His wife was the daughter of Governor
Edwards of Illinois, and their only son is General John Cook, of Illinois.
Daniel Cook was not yet forty when he died, in 1827, at Springfield. He led
the anti-slavery party of 1824 to victory in that great and momentous contest
:n Illinois. John D. Cook, the youngest of the three brothers, was born in
Orange county, Virginia, in 1790. He studied law under General Talbert of
Frankfort, Kentucky, and in 1814 married Miss Sarah Kiddleton Taylor,
cousin of General Zachary Taylor, and soon after moved to Ste. Genevieve,
Missouri. John D. Cook comes into prominent notice as a member from Ste.
Genevieve county of the Constitutional convention mentioned above. He was
appointed one of the supreme judges of Missouri, upon the organization of
the state, August 12, 1821, which office he resigned in 1823. He was twice
reappointed, but, refusing to serve, was appointed circuit judge of the tenth
circuit. The circuit then included nearly all southeast Missouri. This office
he continued to hold until the election of General Taylor to the presidency,
when he was appointed United States district attorney for Missouri, which
position he held at the time of his death, in 1852.


thirteen individuals, the grant lying between Saline creek and the Lit-
tle St. Francois. It was purely a French-Canadian settlement in the
beginning. The first residents of the village of St. Michael were
Peter Chevalier, from the Aux Vasse; Paul, Andrew, and Baptiste
De Guire, from Ste. Genevieve; Antoine, Joseph, Nicolas, and
Michael Caillot dit Lachance, from near New Bourbon; Gabriel
Nicolle (or Nicolee), from Grande river; Pierre Variat, who also had
lived on Grande river, and in 1804 on the St. Francois, and three
others. John Callaway, an American, had settled on the Saline creek
here in the previous year, 1 799. These settlers were all engaged more
or less in lead mining at Mine La Motte, situated only a few miles
from St. Michael. It is worth remembering that at Mine La
Motte, on the 7th of April 1774, seven persons engaged in mining
were killed by the Osage Indians, undoubtedly the bloodiest
massacre in upper Louisiana during the Spanish regime. Joseph
Valle a son of Don Francesco Valle, aged twenty years, was among
those killed. The others were Jacques Parent, aged twenty years,
Auguste Chatal, aged thirty-five years and Menard, aged thirty
years, all Canadians, Dupont, a native of France, aged thirty years,
an Englishman named Phillips, aged thirty years and a negro
named Calise. From the church records of Ste. Genevieve, it
appears that these victims of Indian warfare were reinterred in
1778 in the Catholic cemetery there: On the road leading from
Mine La Motte, Louis Lacroix settled in 1798. He was a lead
miner by profession, interested in mines at Old Mine, Mine a
Breton, as well as at Mine La Motte; also claimed an interest in a
concession at Belle Pointe on the Saline in 179S with Antoine and
Gabriel Caillot dit Lachance. Belle Pointe is a locality not cer-
tainly identified, but likely was a place on the road to Mine La
Motte. In 1804 La Croix was at Fourche a. Courtois.

At an early period a number of settlers must have resided at what
was even at that time known as Old Mine on Old Mine creek, in what
is now Washington county. From the church record of the parish of
St. Ann, Fortde Chartres, under date of September 28, 1748, it ap-
pears that Pierre^Wivarenne, of Picardy, France, and his wife, Marie
Ann Rondeau, were "habitansdu village des Mines", no doubt refer-
ring to this earliest mining settlement in Missouri. This Wivarenne
we may be certain came from Picardy with Renault. A number of
citizens of Ste. Genevieve subsequently were interested in mining


here, among others Joseph Pratte, Amable Partenais dit Mason and
Baptiste Placet. About thirty-one inhabitants resided at Old Mine
when the country was transferred to the United States, and made
claim to four hundred arpens of land there. 75 Not far from here was
the Fontaine de la Prairie, three-fourths of a mile from the New
Diggings' Mine. In 1803 Gideon Treat established a tan-yard in
this prairie.

Within the limits of the present county of Jefferson, along the
Joachim, the Plattin, and on Big river, a number of settlements were
made before the Louisiana purchase. William Null, Senior and
Junior, in 1799, located on Joachim creek; James Varnum built a
distillery between the Joachim and Plattin in 1801, and carried on
business there until 1804. In 1798 Francois Wideman operated a
ferry at the mouth of the Joachim across the Mississippi, where
Herculaneum was subsequently laid out, built a bridge across the
Joachim for the accommodation of carts, carriages, etc., but afterward
sold out to Jeduthan Kendall. 76 Among the earliest settlers on the
Plattin was John A. Sturgis, who received a grant in 1796, and built
a mill on this stream in 1798, which was carried away by a freshet.
The mill was afterward rebuilt, and in 1800 he sold it to Jacob Horine
and Jacob Donner, 77 the consideration mentioned being fifteen hun-

75 Living at Old Mine and interested in the mines there were Jean Baptiste
Miliet (Milliette) and son, had a grant at Old Mine in 1792, but abandoned it,
and in 1799 it was re-granted to Jacques Guibourd, of Ste. Genevieve, interested
in the mines here with Joseph Pratte; Stephen Deline (1797); August Valle
(1799). In 1803 a number of settlers, having lived at these mines several years,
made a joint petition for a grant of their lands, among them Nicholas Boilvin,
who in 1802 was at Mine a, Breton, then on the Mississippi at its junction with
Apple creek and subsequently at Prairie du Chien, see note 44. In 1806,
Joseph Blay; Louis Boyer; Pierre Baptiste Boyer; Bernard and Veuve
Theresa Colman; Alexander Duclos, belonging, no doubt, to the family of
Alexander Decelle Duclos, who lived at Fort de Chartres in 1745 (see claim
on account of Joseph Decelle, heir of Alexander Decelle, who lived at Fort de
Chartres, 2 P. L., page 214-227); Antoine Govreau; Francois Maniche; Francois
Milhomme (Milium), from Kaskaskia; Baptiste (Jean Baptiste) Placet (or
Placey), was near Ste. Genevieve in 1797, and also interested in the mines at
Mine a Breton in 1802; Jean and Charles Robert (Robar or Robin); Charles
seems also to have been at Carondelet; James and Charles Rose; Jacques
Bon (1801); Louis Milhomme, also interested in Mine a. Breton prior to 1803;
Jean Portell (1802); Francois Robert; T. Rose; Jacques Bequette; Charles P.
Colman; Alexander Colman (1803); James Winston (1803).

76 Claiming on the Joachim we find James Lambert (1797); James Foster
(1801), but afterward moved to Concordia parish, Louisiana; Walter Jewitt
(1800); Benjamin Johnson (1802); Isaac Vanmetre (1S01); John Atkins
(1803); Philip Roberts (1803); Thomas Langley Beves (or Bevis) (1801);
David Boyles (1803); also on Sandy creek; John Connor (1803), from Kaskas-
kia; Randolph Harmstick.

77 American State Papers, 2 Public Lands, p. 529.


dred gallons of merchantable whiskey, to be delivered in 1803 at the
mouth of the Plattin, but cautiously the vendors inserted the addi-
tional clause, that they would not be responsible if the boat should
sink in the river on the trip down. Sturgis was syndic in the upper
part of Ste. Genevieve district, his jurisdiction extending as far as the
Maramec. He was a native of Pennsylvania and had served in the
Revolutionary war. Another early pioneer here was Titus Strick-
land, who came over from Kaskaskia in about 1796. He was a
native of New York, but as a child was brought to Louisville,
Kentucky. His wife was a niece of Captain Robert George. He
served in the Indian wars of Tennessee and Kentucky in his youth
before he came to upper Louisiana. 78 Thomas Carlin, from Ken-
tucky, settled on Plattin creek in 1801, and died here. 79 Near the
head waters of the Joachim and Plattin, Peter McCormick opened
a farm in 1802. In 1818 he was an active Methodist, and took a
deep interest in education. 80 John Durlin, in 1799, established a
vacherie (stock farm) on this stream, but in 1807, his place was sold
at public sale for debt to Thomas Fiveash Riddick. 81 On Fourche a

78 Featherstonaugh found Strickland "near a spring" on this creek, in
1834, very likely the original settler, because in 1851 he was still alive. — Excur-
sion Through the Slave States, vol. i., p. 307. He had a lot at one time in the
Ste. Genevieve "Big Field." In 185 1 lived at Ste. Genevieve.

79 After his death his widow moved to Illinois with her family, and one of
his sons was elected governor of that state, and the family became distinguished
in the military service of the United States. Carlinville, the county seat of
Macoupin county, Illinois, was named in honor of Governor Thomas Carlin.

80 John Mason Peck says: "Mr. McCormick, an old settler in this range,
and regarded by all his neighbors as a sort of captain to whom they looked for
guidance, though a backwoodsman, with very little school education, had
sound common sense, and was determined to have a good school for his large
family and the children of his neighbors. He enlisted some of his friends in
Herculaneum ' to send him a rale teacher, none of those whiskey-drinking
Irishmen, such as got into our settlement last year, or, sure as I'm a Methodist,
we'll lynch him.' "

81 Among the residents on the Plattin we find : Thomas Comstock, from
Kaskaskia, removed from there in 1784, presumably to Louisiana, and lived on
the Plattin in 1795; Thomas Harrod; John Violeny (1798); Titus Strickland
(1798), sold his claim in 1803 to John A. Sturgis, and moved to the Saline and
New Bourbon; Joab and Eli Strickland (1798), may be sons or relatives of
David Strickland; John A. Sturgis, Junior, was also here; a son of John Sturges
Jacques Sturges in 1799 married Phoebe Strickland; Jacob Horine (1800);
Michael Ragan (1800); Joseph and Thomas Bear (1802); Joseph Jerred
(1802); John Donner (1802), from the name would infer he was a German;
Humphrey Gibson, Senior (1802), his son Humphrey also lived here, and was
a slave owner; Robert Smith (1803); Abner Wood (1804). On the headwaters
of the Plattin and Indian creek a settlement was formed, known as the "Rich-
woods settlement," and the following persons lived there or claimed property:
Pierre Lord, but afterward, in 1799, in the St. Charles district; Francois M.


Courtois, Robert Hunter dit Polite Robert settled in 1799, but sold
out to Pierre Abar, a Canadian, in 1801, and cultivated land at Old
Mine on Little Mine river, Manuel Blanco being his tenant. Pierre
Abar was also at Mine a Breton.

South of Ste. Genevieve, fronting on the Mississippi river for some
distance, lies an extensive alluvial district now in Perry county,
bounded on the north by the St. Lawrence creek and south by St.
Cosme creek, and which has been known since the earliest times as
Bois Brule bottom. This Bois Brule bottom is separated from the
American bottom on the east side by the Mississippi river, and about
opposite the upper end of this bottom was situated Kaskaskia. Among
the first settlers in Bois Brule was John Baptiste Barsaloux, a travel-
ing merchant, who lived in this bottom in 1787, and applied for a con-
cession for himself and his father Girard Barsaloux. 82 A notable event
(at least, at that time) was the killing of one John O'Connor, who
settled in this bottom in 1799, by a man by the name of Stone. This
is one of the earliest murders in upper Louisiana of which we have
any record. In 1803 O'Connor's property was sold at public sale to
satisfy a claim of Dr. Walter Fenwick, to William Lowry or Laughry,
a merchant of Ste. Genevieve, but who in 1802 lived on Indian creek. 83

Benoist (1800); Louis Giguire (orZeguares) (possibly De Guire) (1800); Mich-
ael, David, Jacob, and Benjamin Horine, were here about 1801, Horine station
on the Iron Mountain railroad named in honor of this family; Avon Quick

82 Probably related to Nicholas Barsaloux, who died in St. Louis in 1776.

83 Other settlers in Bois Brule bottom and up and along Bois Brule creek
were: John W. McClenahan, a native of Virginia, in (1796), was on Mill
(now McClenahan) creek, at the edge of this bottom, where he started a mill
in 1797; he moved away afterward and settled at "Pointe Coupee," in lower
Louisiana, in 1803; Christopher Barnhart, seems to have been in this bottom
on the Mississippi and on the St. Laurent in 1794, near where is now located
the town St. Marys in Ste. Genevieve county; Jacob Crow (1795); Lewis
Dickson (1796), at the lower end of this bottom, on Cinque Homme; William
Burns (1796), in 1799 was in the St. Charles district; David Clark (1796),
from Kaskaskia; John Graham (1796), from Illinois; Thomas Allen (1797),
in this bottom on the Mississippi, joining the settlement at Barrens, also on
Negro fork of the Maramec in 1803; Barnabas (or Barney) Burns, came to the
country it seems in 1784, but lived here until 1797, and on Cape St. Cosme in
1801; James Burns (1797), waived his claim in this locality, married Eliza-
beth Shelby, of New Madrid, daughter of David Shelby; find a James Burns
afterward in St. Charles district, forty-five miles west of St. Louis, and may
be the same. A James Burns on Crooked creek, in the Cape Girardeau dis-
trict; Michael and Benjamin Burns were also here; Joseph Donohoe (1797),
bought from Christopher Barnhart on the waters of the Mississippi and St.
Laurent: Jean Jollin (1797); John Ross McLaughlin (1797); Alexander Mc-
Conohoe (1797); James McLain (1797), seems to have been in the employ of
other inhabitants; Benjamin Walker (1797); Samuel Bridge (1798), from Mass-


On St. Cosme, or Cinque Homme creek, which empties its waters
into the Mississippi at the lower end of Bois Brule, a number of farms
were opened, extending along and up the creek. At the mouth of the
creek we find Levi Wiggins in 1801, and farther up John Duval in

achusetts, married a daughter of Benjamin Strother in 1799, came to New
Bourbon in about 1794 and worked at his trade as a cooper, applying for land
in Bois Brule in 1797, already taken by St. Jemme and Vital Beauvais. Same
land was applied for by a man by the name of Samuel for Robert Brousteu or
Broaster (Brewster) of Kentucky, who died before making a settlement;
Elias Coen, worked for other inhabitants a number of years, and received a
grant in this bottom in 1798 to establish a mill, was on Wolf creek, a fork of
the St. Francois in 1800; Andrew Cox (1798), in this bottom and on the St.
Laurent; Francois Clark, Senior (1798), from Kentucky, lived here on the
Mississippi; Thomas Cochran (1798); Henry Clark (1798), eldest son of
Francois Clark, name also spelled Clarek; James Davis (1798), sold out in
1803 to Francois Moreman of New Bourbon, lived on Negro fork in 1802, and
on the St. Francois in 1803; Jonas Dutton (1798); James Dodge (1798),
from Kentucky, on the Mississippi, in 1801 sold to Timothy Kelly; Joshua
Dodson (1798), from Kentucky, lived on the Mississippi in Bois Brule bottom,
sold to Timothy Kelly in 1801, in 1799 owned property on the St. Francois
in partnership with James Connavan to farm and raise cattle, also on the
Femme Osage in St. Charles district, where his property was sold in 1805 at
mortgage sale to Thomas Smith; John Greenwalt (1798), also on the Saline;
John Townsend (1798); James Thompson (1798), also on the Saline; William
Vanburken (or Vanburkelow), a German (1798); Ffypolite Bolon (1799), an
Indian interpreter; Thomas Donohue (1799); in this bottom on the Mississippi
and St. Laurent, had a tan-yard on the Saline; Joshua Fisher (1799) on St.
Cosme creek; Absalom Kennison (1799), from Kentucky; Robert McLaughlin

Online LibraryLouis HouckA history of Missouri from the earliest explorations and settlements until the admission of the state into the union (Volume 1) → online text (page 44 of 46)