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For more information, contact:

Greene County
Historical Society
P.O. Box 3466 GS
Springfield, MO 65808

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This site was last
updated on
March 6, 2004

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Boone Township....

Boone Township was formed March 13, 1837, but reduced in size in 1872 upon the formation of the Walnut Grove Township. Its present boundaries include all of the 36 sections within T30N and R24W. It is bordered by Dade County and a small portion of Lawrence County on the west, Walnut Grove Township on the north, Murray Township on the east, and Center Township on the south. Sections of the Sac River cross the township at the west edge and Clear Creek on the east edge. The township is named after Nathan Boone, son of the famed Daniel Boone, who was an early settler locating in a grove of ash timber.


Nathan Boone

The Boone family, consisting of three sons, James, John, and Howard, came to Greene County in 1834. There were 14 children born to Nathan Boone. Nathan and his brother, Daniel Morgan Boone, had come up the Missouri River in 1806 to what is now Howard County where they discovered a salt spring and began the production of salt by boiling down the spring water in huge iron kettles. It came to be known as Boone's Lick. The Boone brothers had settled in the Spanish territory west of the Mississippi River. Nathan's variety of livelihoods later included surveying for the United States government in the new Louisiana Territory. His surveying brought him to southwest Missouri and he was particularly attracted to an area that eventually became Boone Township. All the while he was making his home in St. Charles. A bad financial deal resulted in the loss of his St. Charles property and prompted his move to Greene County. His son, Howard, was sent to Boonville in 1835 to enter the 1200 acre tract for him. In 1837 he built a double log house that still stands today. Nathan retired from his military service in 1853 and retired to his Greene County home. He died in 1856 at the age of 75 and is buried in the family cemetery.

The Nathan Boone homestead is a designated Greene County Historical site, is on the National Register of Historic Places, and is in the process of being developed as a state park.


Ash Grove

Ash Grove is the principle town in Boone Township. The first settler on the present site of Ash Grove was Joseph Kimbrough who built the first dwelling and established a store in 1853. A blacksmith shop was established by Mr. Hyatt. These two businesses comprised about all there was there until after the Civil War. The town was incorporated in 1870 but due to a defective document, it had to be reincorporated a year later.

In 1870 the Kansas City and Memphis Railroad, also known as the Springfield & Western Missouri Railroad, proposed to the Greene County Court the subscription of $400,000 in stock. It was approved by the County Court but became involved in controversy before the deal could be concluded. Enough of the bonds had been sold by 1878 that the laying of track could begin from Springfield westward. By May of that year the line had been completed as far as Ash Grove and train service between the two points begun.

In 1879 the Springfield & Western Railroad was transferred to the Kansas City, Ft. Scott & Gulf Railroad Company, assuring the completion of the line in 1881. Construction then began eastward to Memphis.

With the completion of the Springfield & Western Railroad to Ash Grove, the town became the railhead for the surrounding counties. As the railroad bed was cut, deposits of limestone were uncovered and the Ash Grove Lime and Portland Cement Company was formed to process lime. The lime kilns, however, were moved to Galloway in 1935.


Whinery Mill

The 133 year old Whinery Mill stands abandoned on the banks of the Sac River. The former operators of the mill were Charles H. Likens and Louis B. Whinery. A beam found in the building was inscribed, "Whinery-Likens." Much of the mill's equipment has been removed decades ago. The mill is located five miles south of Ash Grove and east of Route E on the SS Ranch. Plans are underway to restore the mill which predates the Wommack Mill in Fair Grove by about thirty years.

Return to the list of Greene County's townships.

 

   
   

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