HISTORY OF JEFFERSON COUNTY, MISSOURI
AND
HISTORY OF THE LEE FAMILY

by Mr. Charles Oliver Lee

© 1999-2001, John Lee


In the 1930s, Mr. C. 0. Lee, my great-grandfather, began to research and record the history of Jefferson County, Missouri. His writings illustrate the lives of early pioneer families and record their successive generations. He died before this project was completed, leaving behind only rough, handwritten drafts of his manuscript. A few years ago, I made Xerox copies of C.0. Lee's writings. I decided to copy his work in edited form, in order that this legacy may be preserved for future generations. The information found in brackets has been added to his original text for clarification, notation, or is information derived from other sources. I wish to thank my grandmother, Mrs. Flae Lee Johnson, his daughter, for her assistance in editing this text.

Lee Ann Kay, November 1987


C. O. and Mary (nee Johns) Lee

C.O. and Mary (nee Johns) Lee
Early settlements
of
Jefferson County

(Jefferson County, Missouri)

From the best information obtainable, it is believed that John Hilderbrand was the first settler in what is now Jefferson County. In 1774 or earlier, he settled in the northeast part of the county on Saline Creek forming what was called the Meramec settlement.

St. Louis and Ste. Genevieve were important trading posts, but the journey between them was rather difficult. A Frenchman by the name of Gomoche [Gamache] was given 1050 arpents [from old French - an arpent is approximately one acre] to establish and keep a ferry across the Meramec. This ferry was about a mile above the mouth.

At this time a trail was marked out down the Mississippi River to Ste. Genevieve. It was called the Kings Trace and was the first highway in Jefferson County.


About 1775-1780, Thomas Jones, Francis Desloge, Joseph Hortez, Jacob Wise, and Peter Donovan settled near Kimswick. In 1778, William Belew settled on Belews Creek, and in 1784 Peter Hilderbrand settled just across the river from the Cedar Hill mill. He was killed by the Indians the same year while out hunting. The family moved to a settlement for protection. James Head settled at House Springs in 1795 but moved in 1796. Adam House moved on the place and stayed until 1800 when he was killed by the Indians. In 1799, Francis Valle, the Spanish commander at Ste. Genevieve, granted to Francis Wideman and as many of his friends and relatives as he could get to come with him, permission to settle in the county, provided they would settle 15 miles from any other settlement. Under this permit Francis Wideman, Charles Priest, Jacob Collins, David Delanny, Mark Wideman, John Wideman, William Estep, Hugh McCulloch, James Davis, and James Rogers with their families settled on Big River and Dry Creek near Morse Mill about 1801.

About 1800, Bartholomew Herrington, John Johnson, John Connor, and James Donnelly settled at Pevely and Herculaneum, and Richard Glover, Clairborne Thomas, James Thomas, Charles Gill, Benjamin Johnson, John Litton, Thomas Waters, and David Boyle settled on Sandy Creek. About the same time, James Gray, Thomas Madden, Fred Connor, Walter Jewit, Thomas Applegate, and James Foster settled at Horine and Baily Station.

John Connor, Richard Applegate, William Null, Isaac Van Meeter, Michael Rober, and William Null, Jr., settled at or near Hematite. Thomas Bevis, Phil Roberts, and Robert Jewett settled at Victoria. Ed Butler and Hardy McCormack settled at De Soto. Thomas Comstock, John Sturgis, Titus Strickland, Jacob Strickland, John Dowling, Jesse Dowling, Mike Regan, Abner Wood, Eli Strickland, H. Gibson, and Joseph Bear settled on the Plattin.

John Stewart, Charles Valle, William Drennen, Sam Wilson, William Jones, and Ann Skinner settled near Sulphur Springs. Jonathan Hilderbrand, a brother of Peter settled near Cedar Hill, Jacob and William Wickerham settled on Belews Creek, Abraham and Ira Hilderbrand, sons of Peter who was killed by the Indians settled at Byrnsville. The above named settlements were made about 1800 to 1801, and the settlers obtained titles to the land from the Spanish Government.

Under Spanish authority, the people obtained permission to settle on 126 tracts of land in Jefferson County and their titles were later confirmed by the U.S. These Spanish grants comprised about 85,000 acres of the best land in the county. These people had no post office nearer than St. Louis and no roads except trails from one settlement to the other, and no stores. John Johnson had a mill on Sandy. The wheel was made out of a large log cut in grooves that would crack corn, but made very poor meal. Francis Wideman had a rude mill near Morse Mill in 1803, where he made an inferior grade of meal.

In 1804, Peter Huskey, his two sons John and William, three daughters, Landon Williams and Thomas Hearst came from South Carolina and settled on Sandy. In 1805, the Huskeys moved to Bethlehem Spring in the bend of Big River, where they put up tents and were preparing to put in a small crop, but an Indian alarm caused them to hurry back to the settlement on Sandy. Peter Huskey was the ancestor of all the Huskeys of this county. James Pounds, the ancestor of that family came to the county about 1803.

When Spain relinquished her rights to the Mississippi Valley in 1803, the settler could no longer secure a farm home under her homestead rules. And from that time until 1821 the settlers in Jefferson County could not obtain a title to their lands, but they were protected by squatter sovereignty or settlement rights, and many people settled in the county between 1803 and 1821. All the land embraced in Jefferson County was included in the St. Louis Land District, with the land office in St. Louis, where they first became subject to entry in 1821 after the United States surveys had been completed. The first entries in Congressional Township 41 Range 3 East, which would include Morse Mill and Bethlehem communities, were made in 1821 by John Wideman, Thomas and Isaac Evans, James Pounds, James McCullouch and others. The first made in Township 40 Range 3 East were made by Daniel Eastwood, John Wiley and others in 1821.



History of the Family of John Robert Wilson
Who Came to Jefferson County from South Carolina

About 1820, John Robert Wilson (some say John and some Robert) came from South Carolina bringing with him a large family. He settled on Big River about 2 miles northeast of Morse Mill on a tract of land that later was known as the Sam Herrington farm, now owned [1937] by the John F. Williams estate. Some reports have it that he stayed a few years and went back to Carolina where he died, others that he came back to Jefferson County, where he died.

In the family there were four boys and five or six girls, most of whom made their homes in the western part of the county, around Morse Mill and Grubville. The eldest son, Ephraim, was married in 1816 in Carolina and had one son John M., born in Abbeville, South Carolina, in 1818. It would seem that the family ranged in ages from Ephraim, a young married man, down to rather young children when they came it is possible some of the youngest children were born in Jefferson County.

Ephraim first settled on Jones Creek two or three miles above the mouth, and lived there a short time. He went back east as far as McNarry County, Tennessee, and stayed three or four years, where his second son, Robert, was born in 1828. Becoming dissatisfied there, he returned to Jefferson County, Missouri, and settled at the head of Jones Creek about 1/2 mile east of where the Grubville Post Office is now located [in 1937]. Here he lived the remainder of his life except one or two years he spent in Arkansas about 1842-3. The other children were Jacob, Lenard, Adam, Sanel, Lucy, Fannie, Clara, Harriet and Jane. Jacob married Winnie Couch and settled on Jones Creek about 2.5 miles below and east of where Ephraim last settled. Adam, a cripple, settled on the ridge between Ephraim and Jacob, and about one mile west of Jacob. Lenard settled on Skull Bone Creek, about one mile southwest of Cedar Hill, where Ed Harness now lives [1937]. Fannie married Sam Herrington and at the time of her death and for many years before her home was the farm her father settled. Sanel married George Davis and lived at different places in Big River Township. Several children were born to them. After her death Mr. Davis married her sister, Lucy. She did not live long after her marriage. If she left any children the writer does not know of them. It is the opinion of the writer that there was another daughter, Harriet, that married a man named Vinyard, of Victoria, and was the mother of W.J. Haverstick's wife. If this be true, she is the grandmother of Charles Haverstick of DeSoto. This opinion, however, may be wrong. Jane wed a man by the name of Wright and moved to the western part of the state according to the information available and the writer has no information concerning her family. Aunt Clara wed a man by the name of Williams, familiarly known as Uncle Black Hawk, and their children were often called Black Hawk instead of Williams. They lived at different places in the vicinity of Morse Mill and raised a large family. Their children will be mentioned later.

It is the purpose of the writer to give to the best of his ability a list of the descendants of these four men and five women down to their great- and sometimes great-great-grandchildren. I shall not be very careful to list children who died in infancy. It is also the intention of the writer in addition to naming the children and grandchildren of these men and women to state so far as possible where they settled, their occupations, their social activities in the community, and other things that will interest the younger generations. As Ephraim is the oldest one in the family it seems logical to write of his family first.



Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson
Great-Grandparents to C.O. Lee

Ephraim, son of John Robert Wilson and wife, was born in Abbeville County, South Carolina, about 1791. In 1816, he married Francis (Fannie) Link, who is thought to have been born in Mississippi. Here their first child, John M. was born in 1818. He came with his father and brothers and sisters to Jefferson County in 1820, and settled on Jones Creek two or three miles above the mouth. He is said to be the first settler on the creek as has already been stated. He stayed here a few years and moved to McNarry County, Tennessee, where his other son, Robert, was born in 1828. He stayed three or four years in Tennessee, and returned to Jefferson County, this time settling on the head of Jones Creek about 1/2 mile east of the present location of Grubville Post Office [1937]. Just how many children he had when he came back to Missouri and the date of his return is not known, but here he finished rearing his family and spent the remainder of his life except one or two years spent in Arkansas about 1841 or 1842. To this union two sons and five daughters were born: John M. 1818, Catherine 1822, Betty 1824, Robert 1828, Lucinda 1832, Mahala 1830, and Martha 1837. John M. married Adaline Graham, daughter of William and Margaret Graham of near Frumet, in 1839, and settled on Jones Creek 1/4 mile east of his father. Catherine married Frank Frost of Crawford County 1841 and in 1844 settled west of and joining her father. Betty married Michael McKay 1847 or 48 and settled about one mile below her father on Jones Creek, joining John M.

Robert married Mary Frost of Crawford County 1849 and settled about 1/2 mile northwest of and joining his father. Lucinda married George H. Frost about 1851 and settled about one mile southwest of her father. Mahala married Christopher Frost of Crawford County in 1850-52 and settled about one mile south of her father and joining George and Lucinda. Martha, the youngest child, married Warren Whitsett of Franklin County in the early 1860's and made her home on her father's old place.

The Wilson family, as well as all other families of their day, had little educational advantages. What schooling they got was in the subscription schools in a log house with a dirt floor heated by a stick and clay fire place. The seats were split logs with holes bored in the round side, into which was inserted wooden legs. Ephraim and Fannie Wilson lived like other pioneer Missourians of their time. They raised a small patch of cotton, flax, and corn. Also beans, pumpkins, turnips, and potatoes. The cotton and flax they wove into cloth for summer wear. In winter, the men wore clothes made of jeans cloth woven by hand by the women folks of the family, and some wore breeches and jackets made of buck skin. Their caps were made of coon and fox skins. In winter, the women wore dresses made of linsey which they wove by hand.

The yarn to make the jean and linsey was made from wool from sheep. After the sheep were shorn they washed and picked the wool, then carded it into rolls by hand which they spun into yarn by hand. They also wove blankets and coverlids out of this yarn and knit socks, mittens, and suspenders. The potatoes and turnips were buried in the ground and taken out as wanted. Pumpkins were dried for winter use.

Many of the early settlers were mechanics, and practically everything used by them was made in the community, such as furniture, brooms, spinning wheels, plows, carts, and wagons. The subject of this sketch was a mechanic as were both of his sons. He constructed some kind of wooden mill to grind corn which he used in an early day. Little wheat was raised in Missouri in an early day, and what was raised was cut by hand with a reap hook, a long, slender crooked implement. The harvester simply grasped as large a handfull with his left hand as he could, and cut it with the reap hook with the other hand, and repeated the performance laying the wheat in bunches until he got through the field. Then he hooked his reap hook on his suspender and went back through the field binding the wheat. He then cut through and bound back again until he finished the job. As there were no threshing machines in those days they had to beat the wheat out with a flail, or pile it upon the ground or threshing floor and ride horses round and round on it and tramp it out. A few of the better farmers built barns with a threshing floor in it, before the days of the old horse power threshing machine, which was a very crude affair. It was hauled from farm to farm on wagons, the separater on one wagon, the horse power on another. They unloaded and fastened them to the ground by wooden stakes driven into the ground. When one crop was finished they were put on the wagons and hauled to the next farm.

Ephraim and Fannie Link Wilson seem to have been reasonably prosperous pioneers and they must have been people of high ideals as they raised one of the most highly respected families of this section of the country. They were both members of the Methodist Church.

The mother, Fanny Link Wilson, seems to have been rather better educated and more refined than her husband and the average pioneer of her time. It is said she worried because her children could not have better educational advantages. She seems to have taken a great interest in the school and church. The first school house built in this community was built a 1/2 mile north of the Ephraim Wilson residence. The Grubville School from the beginning has been considered one of the best, especially during the first half century of its existence.

The two Wilson boys and five girls all united with the Old Bethlehem Bapitst church in early life and remained faithful members, together with many of their children, until they erected a church at Grubville about 1880. Every son-in-law except possibly one, both daughters-in-law and every grandchild (31) with one exception were church members, and as a whole were loyal to the church and regular attendants of church, Sunday School, and Prayer Meetings. I suppose there are few country communities, if any, in the county where there has been an ever-green Sunday School as long as there has been at Grubville. This community has also been noted for its social life, such as literary and debating societies, public and Sunday schools, entertainments, quilting parties, candy pullings, corn huskings, singing schools, and in later days, lodge meetings and Ladies Aid work.

This community was known as the Frost and Wilson settlement, and as the grandchildren made homes for themselves, many of them settled near their parents and grandparents. Here they lived together in peace and harmony, ever ready to lend a helping hand to all in need. As a family they were honest, industrious, and sober people of high ideals and high moral standards. Of the five daughters and 19 granddaughters of Ephraim and Fannie Wilson, not one of them has done anything to disgrace them so far as the writer has been able to learn.

Having a slave to do the farming, Ephraim did little work after middle-age, but spent most of his time hunting and fishing dividing his game and fish among his children, as there was lots of game and fish in those days. It was not uncommon for them to see Daddy, as they called him, riding up with a mess of venison, turkey, or fish. His favorite time to start fishing in the spring was when the dogwood were in bloom. Before putting out his hooks, he baited the holes where he expected to fish by putting a sack of shelled corn in each hole, which he tied and left there until it swelled and got soft. Luring the fish to suck on the soft corn, he then removed the corn, baited his hooks, put them in, and made large catches. They also caught many fish in traps in those days.

Shortly after the middle of the 19th century, surrounded by a highly respected and loyal family of children and grandchildren, Fanny Link Wilson passed to her eternal reward and was laid to rest on a beautiful knoll, near the school house, overlooking the old residence. Let us say of her: "She hath done what she could, and that her virtues have been visited upon her children unto the third and fourth generation." After her death, her husband married Mrs. Henderson from near Robertsville, Franklin County, and continued to live on the old farm until his death in 1862 when he was laid to rest beside his first wife by the old school house, where John M. and wife, Martha and husband, several grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and Robert and his wife were buried. The other children were buried in the new cemetery at the church.



John M. Wilson, Son of Ephraim Wilson
Born 1818 in Abbeville County, South Carolina

In 1839 John M. Wilson was united in marriage to Adaline Graham, daughter of William and Margaret Graham, of near Frumett, Missouri. He settled on Jones Creek 1/4 mile east of his father. He was a blacksmith as well as a farmer and in his younger days did his own blacksmith work and some for neighbors. Uncle John and Aunt Adaline had but one child, a son, that died in infancy. After marriage, by industry and economy, he prospered and enlarged his farm from time to time until, at one time he owned a strip of land extending south from Jones Creek to a mile beyond Big River, a distance of four or five miles. At this time he owned the Fred Harbison place of today [1937], which is the tract he originally settled, the Mrs. Field farm part of Hoffman's place, the W.R. McKay place, the Tom Eoff place, the Mutrux 40, the Jim Brown place, the A.W. Miller place and the William Wiley place, being 12 or 13 hundred acres.

During his prime it was all productive and he raised large crops of wheat, oats, corn, and hay. The wheat he hauled to St. Louis on the railroad. The corn, oats, and hay he fed to stock-horses, mules, cattle, hog, and sheep which he raised in large numbers. He usually kept two or three men with families living on the farm, usually one on the river farm, and one or two in houses on other parts of the farm, besides single men who boarded with him. He kept about 15 or 20 head of good work mules and horses of which he took the best of care. He also kept several brood mares and always had a large number of young horses and mules. He usually kept about 100 head of cattle, mostly roan Durham, and as fine a bunch as could be found any place. He also had good sheep and hogs.

Most of the corn raised on the river was hauled in four-mule wagons to the home farm on Jones Creek, where he had three harge barns, besides log cribs. It was always a busy place and especially at corn pulling time, when everthing else was dropped and all hands, besides several extras, stayed in the cornfield from daylight until dark. Two or three four-mule teams hauled two loads each a day, besides a wagon or two which were gathering and cribbing at the river.

The drivers who hauled corn home were up and gone long before daylight and drove in a trot most of the way to the river where he gathered, without help, his four-mule load and was back home and unloaded in time for dinner, and hurried back for a load in the afternoon. This was done day after day for weeks.

The writer remembers as a child hearing Uncle John's corn wagon before daylight going to the river for corn. They could be heard for two miles. After the corn was gathered the hands cut and hauled wood, made rails, built fence, cleared, grubbed, and cared for stock.

The folks looked forward to chicken dressing and hog killing time at Uncle John's. Each year before Christmas, Aunt Adeline invited the neighbors in to help dress geese, ducks, and chickens when they killed and dressed them by the hundred and hauled them to St. Louis. The neighbors carried livers and gizzards home by the bucketful to pay them for their work.

As Uncle John sold meat to his married hands, he killed hogs by the dozen. On the day before hog killing he had a log heap built, with an abundance of limestone rocks in the heap. Long before daybreak next morning this log heap was fired to heat the rocks [to heat the water to scald the hogs makes the hair easier to remove]. Near the hog pen he had a box large enough to hold the hog, buried in the ground. They filled the box full of water and put hot rocks out of the log heap into the box to heat the water. By about sun up the neighbor men and women arrived and the killing started. Uncle John did the shooting with the muzzleloading rifle, and usually the writer's father doing the sticking [in the throat].

If the hog was facing Uncle John he shot it in the forehead, if its head was turned away from him he shot it behind the ear, if standing sidewise he shot it under the ear. However the hog stood he seldom made one squeal. Everyone had a hog killing time. The women cleaned entrails, rendered lard, and helped Lize, the negro cook, get dinner. Every family had a good supply of livers and spareribs to take home with them. Aunt Adeline, a rather large fleshy jolly woman, bossed the house and entertained the crowd.

As they had no children of their own they partially raised several orphan children - Margaret Lee, Jack Carrow, Tom Miller, George Lee, and Freemont Pounds.

The house was a 7 room house, 3 rooms above and 2 down, running north and south with a dining room and kitchen on the east side. A wide hall ran east and west between the north and south rooms. The family usually consisted of Aunt, Uncle, Lize, a girl to help with the housework and milking, and two or three boys and hired men. Lize was a slave, bought from Uncle Madison Graham of Morse Mill, a brother of Aunt Adeline. She was bought when she was 12 -15 years old in the early 1850's for $600. After the war she continued to live with her mistress until Aunt's death. Regardless of who was there, everyone who put his feet under Uncle John's table worked. [Lize lived with the Fred Harbison family until her death at old age.]

A large room with a fireplace in the north end was the hang room. North of the house was the garden and vineyard, of about an acre where were raised an abundance of vegetables and small fruit. West of the house and nearby in the creek bottom was the apple orchard of six or eight acres. In the corner near the house stood the wheat house with a large cellar under it. Also a drying house for drying apples and peaches. Southeast on a hill was the peach orchard. The apple orchard contained many varieties, from Junes [little green apple picked in June] to Genetins and winesaps. There were apples on the ground from June to December; and neighbors who did not have apples carried these away by the bushels, free of charge.

When it came time to pick apples Uncle John had them picked and stored by the loads in the cellar under the wheat house, and hauled them to St. Louis by the hundreds of bushels, and many of the damaged apples were made into applebutter by neighbors, and the butter was sweetened with sorghum molasses. In the late summer and fall they cut and dried apples in immense quantities, besides making applebutter, jelly, preserves, and cider. Neighbors got apples and dried them on the shares. People processed the apples and Uncle John received his share of the product. During this occasion in the community, there was an apple cutting someplace about every week where young and old met and peeled and cut apples to dry. Sometimes it was a peach cutting, but in either case they worked hard and everyone had a good time, especially the young folks of courting age who paired off the girl doing the peeling and the boy the cutting. Usually about the time they were done the youngsters had a great time throwing peelings and cores.

East of the house, across the creek, stood the old rock springhouse, where a fine spring ran from under a limestone bluff and through the springhouse. Nearby was the milk pen where Lize and the hired girl or some girl living with Aunt for a home, milked 12 to 15 cows (and they were good ones), and put the milk in the milk house. Here Lize was prepared to heat water, kept her churn and churned under the shade of two large trees every morning. For many years she used the old fashioned dash churn, taking the dash handle in her hand and dashing it up and down until the butter came. The churn was made by Uncle John out of cedar staves, and hooped with hickory hoops made by hand. Some of the vessels she used to milk in were small vessels made also by Uncle John of cedar staves, with one long stave with a hand holt cut in it to hold it by. These vessels were called piggins and were also hooped with handmade hickory hoops. The writer well remembers the first churn Lize got in which the dash was operated by a crank. Passing the plantation one morn, going to school, I heard an unusual noise at the springhouse. On investigation I found Lize, all smiles, operating her new churn. Of course she explained how it worked and said, "It is just like thrashing butter." She had a pen around the spring and milk house, and a small pen joining the milk house pen. In this pen she had a pig trough to feed the waste milk to the pigs. There was a small opening in the pen so only pigs could get in.

In the fall of the year, Aunt, Lize, and the girls gathered nuts by the bushels.

The lath string always hung on the outside at this home to their relatives from far and near, and they were numerous, as the Wilson family was large as well as the Graham family, which will be mentioned later.

At the times of which we are writing people visited much more than they do now. The women would go and stay all day with their neighbors frequently and whole families would load up and go and stay all night and all day and as most families were large it was often difficult to find places for all to sleep. Most homes had the trundle bed. They took the feather ticks off and put them on the floor and some slept on what they called made down beds, and some of the small children slept at the foot of their parents. Most families were pretty well supplied with linsey quilts, home woven blankets, and coverlids as well as feather beds so they got by very well. It was customary for the young folks of one family to visit the homes of neighbors and stay until bed time when they played blindfold, pleased or displeased, pussy wants a corner, and many others. They also ate apples, nuts, and popcorn until late bed time usually.

Aunt and Uncle John were probably visited oftener than the others. There was always baskets of different kinds of apples near the fireplace and usually nuts, blackhaws [wild purple dried fruit], and [wild] persimmons in the corner. Lize would crack pie pans full of nuts and everybody ate their fill of nuts and apples before they went home. Uncle Jake, a younger brother of Uncle John's father, claimed he carried John Eaph, as he was called, from South Carolina to Missouri sitting on a pillow before him on his saddle horn, while he drove the cattle behind the wagon train. The writer remembers of seeing Uncle Jake when he was a real old man going up the creek to John Eaph's as he called him, and whom he visited often.

Physically Uncle John was a rather large man, standing about 6 feet with broad shoulders and wore no. 10 or 11 shoes, with heavy hair and heavy shaggy eyebrows, rather severe looking when he wanted to be, and many a small child has run to its mother for protection when it encountered that grim visage he could assume. He was a man of a jolly disposition, enjoyed a joke and liked to play the green horn when among strangers. It is said that in his younger days when he hauled his wheat, corn and apples to St. Louis with ox teams he often pulled off his shoes and rolled up his pants, and brushed up his hair just before he got into town and walked beside the oxen cracking his whip and yelling at them like a mad man. Both he and Aunt smoked a clay pipe, and once when the river was over his corn he went over to the bluff to look at it and on his return he went into the house and said, "Light the little pipe, Adeline, its all gone." After that, the same expression was often used on similar occasions in the community.

It is reported that on one occasion he went over to the river to see how things were going, riding a young mule. When he got to the river the mule refused to cross, and he whipped him, and the mule went round and round on the gravel bar with his head up in Uncle's face. Finally in his anger, he decided to bite the mule's ear off, so he shut down on the point of the mule's ear as tight as he could, and the mule ducked his head and pulled two of Uncle's front teeth out. The story is undoubtedly true, as he had some front teeth missing.



Family & Descendants of Michael & Betty (nee Wilson) McKay
Grandparents of C.O. Lee

In 1847, Michael McKay (born 1821) was united in marriage to Elizabeth Wilson (born 1824), daughter of Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson, and settled a short distance below Mrs. McKay's father on Jones Creek. Here they reared their family and spent the remainder of their lives. Two sons and four daughters were born to them: Frances 1849, Mary, Sophronia, Martha, Robert 1859, and Price 1862.

In an early day, Grandfather owned 320 acres on Jones Creek reaching from Robert Wilson on the west to Grandmother's Uncle Jake on the east. Up to middle age he was a well to do and prosperous farmer. At this time he had to sell 160 acres to pay a security debt, for his brother, Uncle Billy. What he got for the 160 acres did not pay all the debt and in the late 1890's he mortgaged the remaining 160 to finish paying the debt.

In his old days he had a rather hard time making a living. Mary, "Aunt Sis", as we always called her never married, and stayed at home with her parents. Grandmother died in 1894. Aunt Sis continued to stay with Grandfather until his death in 1896, after which time she stayed with Uncle Price until his death in 1928. After his death she stayed with his children until her death in 1936.

The writer whose home was near them spent many happy days and nights with Grandpa, Grandma, and Aunt Sis. Aunt Sis was a second mother to him and all was well when he was with her. Grandma was always a rather delicate woman, and in her last years she was not able to do much or go visiting or to church much. The last place she went was to see her daughter, Sophronia, who had pneumonia and was not expected to live. She went to her sister's, Aunt Catherine Frost, nearby to spend the night where she took pneumonia and died in a few days. She was a good neighbor and as long as she was able was always ready to help her children or neighbors in any way she could.

Grandpa was the horse doctor of the community, and went far and near to doctor stock. It is doubtful if he got 5 cents an hour for his services. He was also a good judge of human ailments and went far and near to nurse and doctor the sick. People seeming to feel better if Uncle Mike was there. He was a kind hearted and sympathetic man and was never too busy or too tired to go far or near to aid a sick neighbor. Grandpa and Grandma were faithful members of the Bethlehem Church and regular attendants as long as they were able to go. They had many virtues, few faults. They were buried at Bethlehem Cemetery.



Family of Robert and Mary (nee Frost) Wilson
Son of Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson

In the year 1849, Robert Wilson (born 1828) son of Ephraim Wilson was married to Mary Frost (born 1828) of Crawford County. They settled northeast of his father near where the Grubville Church now stands. To them 6 children were born: Martha Jane 1852, John F. 1854, Josephine 1856, Fannie 1859, R. B. 1862, and Lucy 1866.

In an early day Uncle Bob got possession of a large tract of good ridge land where he raised good crops and prospered. Besides being a good farmer he was a blacksmith and wagon maker in early life. He also believed in progress. He owned and operated one of the first steam threshers in the country, which he operated far and near and threshed many thousands of bushels of grain yearly. He was the first man in the community to have an organ in the home, and the Grubville Church was the first church to have an organ. He took a great interest in the district school, and sent some of his children away to school. Fannie, Lucy, and R. B. were teachers. Uncle Bob had a good house and barn, a good orchard from which he hauled hundreds of bushels of apples to St. Louis each year. He was a man of positive convictions and never hesitated to stand for what he thought was right regardless of the opposition. Aunt Mary was a quiet unassuming sort of woman, but there was no better to be found.



Family of George H. and Lucinda (nee Wilson) Frost
Daughter of Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson

In about 1851, Lucinda Wilson, daughter of Ephraim and Fannie Wilson, was united in marriage with George H. Frost, who was reared in Washington and Crawford Counties. In 1849, he and his father started to California by ox wagon across the plain. The father, Simeon Frost, of Crawford County died about 10 miles west of Independence, but Uncle George continued the journey and after over 6 months arrived in California. He returned by water in 1851. [NOTE: George Frost and his father, Simeon, went to CA with the gold rush. P. Frazer, JCM/CC]

After his marriage, Uncle George and Aunt Lucy settled about one mile southwest of her father where they reared their family and spent their entire married lives. Uncle George enlarged his farm until he had a large tract, and was a prosperous farmer and stock raiser. To this union seven children were born: Mahala 1852, Emily C. 1854, Ephraim 1860, R. J. 1863, Annie 1866, George B. 1869, Jennie 1872 or 73 (dates may not all be exact).

In about 1882, Mahala married Charles R. Lamar, a Baptist minister, who had previously married Martha Jane Wilson, daughter of Robert Wilson, and a double first cousin of Mahala. The first Mrs. Lamar died 1879 or 80. Mahala and Charles Lamar moved to St. John, Kansas, where they lived for several years. Later they moved to Oregon where they died. Four children were born to them. I have no information concerning the children.

Emily C. married Daniel J. Henry in 1875 and settled joining her father on the north. Later they moved to St. John, Kansas, where they lived a while, then they came back to Missouri and settled on Lost Creek in Washington County where they lived for several years. On leaving there they came back to Grubville and bought her father's old place. Here they lived until 1910. After living a short time near Catawissa and in Robertsville they came back to Grubville and bought the farm they first settled on. Both died here. She was born in 1854 and died in 1926. He was born in 1852 and died in 1931. They were both buried in the Grubville Cemetery. Six sons were born to them: William 1876, Ellis 1879, Lester 1881, Claude 1884, Roy, and Jessy.



Descendants of Daniel J. and Emily C. (nee Frost) Henry

W. G. married Laura Perkins, daughter of David and K.V. Perkins in 1898. Four sons and two daughters were born to them: Everet 1899, John 1901 [called Jack], Grover 1903, Clarence 1906, Lucy 1912, and Willa Lee 1920 [called Billy].

Ellis Henry married, but has no children.

Lester married a Miss League of Washington County, and first settled on Lost Creek. They have a large family, and at present are living near Potosi [1937]. He is a prosperous farmer and stock raiser.

Claude married Floyd Perkins, daughter of David and K.V. Perkins in 1912. They have three sons and one daughter: Forest 1913, Frances 1914, Ward 1916, and Glenn 1929.

Roy married Lula Mitchel of Robertsville. They have two daughters, Wanda and Catherine, and a son.

Jess married a Miss Waters of Robertsville. They have several children, but are separated at present [1937].

Ephraim Frost, son of George and Lucy Frost married Ruth Lee, daughter of Harrison Lee. Shortly after their marriage they moved to St. John, Kansas, where they farmed a few years, and then returned to Missouri where they farmed a short time, before going to St. Louis where they lived the remainder of their lives. One son and four daughters were born to them: Clyde, Bessie, Margaret, Lucy, and Ruth. They both died in St. Louis. Both were buried in the Grubville Cemetery.

R. J. (Jeff) Frost was born 1863, second son of George and Lucy Frost. In 1884, he married Emily Lee (born 1861), daughter of James Lee and Jane (nee Wilson) Lee, who was the daughter of Lenard Wilson of near Cedar Hill on Skull Bone Creek. Of this union 4 children are living: Loyd, Pearl, Clay, and Wheeler. The mother died in 1925. Loyd married Iva Lewis, daughter of crippled John Lewis, and has one daughter, Faye. Clay married Ethel Maupin, daughter of James Maupin. They have no children. Pearl married Robert Russler. They have no children. Wheeler married Violet Long, daughter of Jeptha Long of Big River near Brown Ford. They have one son, Dale.

Anna, daughter of George and Lucy Frost married a man by the name of Sims. She has one daughter.

George B. Frost, son of George H. and Lucy Frost was born December 29, 1869, and in about 1892 or 93 he married Maud Smith of Kansas. To this union three children were born: Cecil, Chester, and one died in infancy. The wife and mother died and was buried at Grubville. Later he married Wilma Reed, daughter of C. L. and Lucy Reed. To this union two sons were born : Orvil and Horace. In early life he farmed, but in later life he lived most of the time in St. Louis; part of the time working as a carpenter and part of the time in business for himself. He passed away in St. Louis in December 1935 and was laid to rest in the Grubville Cemetery. George B. Frost was a pal and seatmate of the writer when they were boys in the district school, and a life long intimate friend and associate. As a boy and as a man he was absolutely clean and dependable. He did not use tobacco or intoxicating liquor, and if he ever swore an oath in his life the writer never heard it.

Jennie, the youngest child of George H. and Lucy Frost, died about 1897. She did not marry.

George H. and Lucy were good citizens and good neighbors. The writer's mother-in-law, Mrs. Mary Johns, lived on a farm joining them, and she often said that she never had better neighbors than they were. After the death of Mrs. Johns' husband in 1877, she had to manage the farm and make a living for her family as best she could. She frequently spoke about Uncle George being so kind and helpful to her in her struggle to rear her family. She told of one incident that shows the kind of man Uncle George was. One year his pigs got into her corn field and did some small damage, but she thought nothing of it as it was a common thing for pigs to find a hole in the fence and get into sombody's field. However, when it came time to gather corn Uncle George came over with a load of corn to pay for the damage his pigs had done.

Uncle George was a Mason and a Democrat. He was born in Washington County, near Berryman 1825. In 1835 he moved to Crawford County, and came to Jefferson County 1847. Aunt Lucy was born in 1830. Uncle George and Aunt Lucy and all their children were members of the Baptist Church. She died in March 1904 and he in September the same year. They were laid to rest in the Grubville Cemetery.



Family of Christopher E. and Mahala (nee Wilson) Frost
Daughter (6th child) of Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson

Mahala, daughter of Ephraim and Fannie Wilson, married Christopher E. Frost of Crawford County about 1851 and settled about one mile south of her father and joining George and Lucy on the east. In early life Uncle Chris learned the carpenter and cabinet maker trades. After his marriage, he opened and operated a good farm and at the same time ran a general store on his farm.

He first built a one room log house about 1850, and about 1860 he started five more rooms joining the log house, but did not get it finished until near the close of the war. When it was finished he had a six room house. The front was two rooms long and two stories high lying north and south, and a kitchen and dining room on the west. The front part was plastered and with the exception of the ceiling of one room is in pretty good condition yet. [It was in this home that C. O. Lee raised his children.]




The C. O. Lee Home

Home of C. O. Lee and Family



The front rooms were roofed with shingles sawed out of red cedar logs cut along the bluff between Bethlehem and Morse Mill and sawed at Morse Mill. They were about twice as thick as the shingles used now, and the roof was in fair condition when taken off in 1919, after 59 years service. The store building was about 100 yards north of the residence (approximately the perspective of the picture above).

Uncle Chris and Aunt Hala had no children for several years after their marriage. They took an orphan boy, by the name of Jake Jones, to raise. He always went by the name of Frost. When he grew to manhood, he married, and had three or four children. He died young, and Uncle Chris took his son to raise, who was known as our Uncle John Frost.

In 1869, he traded his farm at Grubville to William A. Johns for a farm in Franklin County, near Robertsville, on Calvey Creek. After moving to Franklin County he ran a store at Robertsville for a few years, but later devoted his time to farming. Here he made his home until about 1892 when he moved back to Grubville, and built a house on a piece of land his wife inherited from the estate of her brother John M. Wilson. Here he lived until his death March 1897. Aunt Mahala and her daughter, Nettie, preceeded Uncle Chris in death about 1 week. They were buried the same day. They were all buried at Grubville Cemetery. Only three children were born to Uncle Chris and Aunt Hala: Nettie, Jim, and Ella.

Nettie married a man by the name of Jake Norlin. They had several children...six. As stated above she died 1897.

Jim married twice. His first wife was a Miss Bardot of Leubbering. She has been dead many years. Jim has several children.

Ella did not marry until late in life. She has no children.

Jim and Ella are both living, he in St. Louis where he has spent practically all his life since he became a man. Ella is living in Springfield or Sedalia, Missouri [1937].



Family of Warren and Martha (nee Wilson) Whitsett
Daughter and Youngest Child of Ephraim and Fannie (nee Link) Wilson

Martha, youngest child of Ephraim and Fannie Wilson, was united in marriage to Warren Whitsett about 1863. They made their home on her father's old place where five children were born to them: Drusilla about 1865 or 66, Hannah 1868, Alpha J. 1873, and Albert 1875. One died in infancy.

Mr. Whitsett's parents also came from South Carolina. He was one of the best educated men of his time in the community. He taught school in the winter and farmed in the summer. After Uncle Warren and Aunt Martha were married they built a nice 3-room frame house with a cellar under it. They did not build a fireplace. Theirs was the only house in the community at that time heated with a stove.

The writer well remembers going with his mother to Aunt Martha's to stay all night and how he felt when left with the other children in the front room without a lamp while supper was prepared. Uncle Warren died in 1877 and was laid to rest in the old family cemetery by the school house.

About 1882, Aunt Martha married Oliver Lee, son of Harrison Lee and wife, whose first wife was Margaret Wilson, daughter of Adam Wilson, and therefore a first cousin of Aunt Martha. Aunt Martha had four children and Uncle Oliver three when they were married. They made their home on the old Wilson homestead, where they reared their family and lived until Aunt Martha's death. One daughter, Esther Lee, was born to them 1883. She died 1897. Aunt Martha had a paralytic stroke and was bed fast the remainder of her life. She bore her affliction with the fortitude that only a Christian could, until her death. She was laid to rest beside her first husband.

Drusilla, the eldest daughter, went to Kansas where she married a man by the name of Dawson. She had one or two children, but has been dead many years.

Hannah, second daughter, taught school for several years in Jefferson and Franklin Counties before her marriage to George Hinson. After her mother's death, her husband bought the old farm, where they lived until 1920. Here four daughters were born to them: Ruth 1905, Martha 1907, Jewel 1909, Gale was born in 1903. In 1920, the Hinson family moved to Vinton, Texas, where they engaged in farming. Martha, one of the brightest and most agreeable pupils the writer ever had in 20 years experience as a teacher, was killed in an automobile accident. George died suddenly of a heart attack. A few years later Hannah's death was also sudden. She was one of the best and most intelligent women the writer has ever had the privilege of knowing.

George was the best nurse and one of the most helpful men in the community in sickness. When there was sickness in a neighbor's home that required a nurse through the night, he would set his alarm clock and go to bed early and sleep until midnight. He then got up, took a book or magazine, and went and cared for the sick one until morning. Such was the confidence his neighbors had in him as a nurse they did not hesitate to go to bed and leave the patient in his care. For ten years the writer lived near George and Hannah and can testify that they were, indeed, good neighbors.

Alpha Juna, youngest daughter, married Robert E. Weber of Franklin County. They had four children that lived to be grown: Clarene, Warren, Rita, and Byron. She died 1910 and was laid to rest in the Grubville Cemetery. In 1913, Mr. Weber married Jennie Lee, daughter of Oliver Lee, and a step-sister of his first wife. They had no children. In 1935, Rob, as he was usually called, fell with a scaffold while working at the carpenter trade and was killed. He was buried by his first wife.

Albert, the only son, went to Kansas about 1897 or 98, where he learned the carpenter trade, and became a successful contractor. He married, but has no children.



Family of Jacob and Winnie (nee Couch) Wilson
Son of John Robert Wilson

Jacob Wilson, son of John Wilson, was born in Abbeville, South Carolina, about 1796. He came with his father and brothers and sisters to Jefferson County, Missouri, about 1820. In 1821 or 22, he married Winnie Couch and settled on Jones Creek about 2-1/2 or 3 miles east of Grubville, where he opened up a good farm. At present [1937] his grandson, J. Lawson Lee, owns and operates the farm. Uncle Jake built a big double log house, with a porch on the east, near a fine spring. The old house was located about 20 or 30 yards southeast of the present residence. To this union four boys and seven girls were born: Adaline, January 3, 1823; Clarissa, October 28, 1824; Silas C., March 19, 1826; John T., June 16, 1829, who died in California in 1849; Ephraim J., November 30, 1832; Sarah, September 11, 1835; Millie (Mahala) Ann, March 14, 1837; William Martin, March 22, 1840; Elizabeth, April 1, 1842; Catherine, January 13, 1844; Winnie Emaline, April 3, 1845. The mother of the above family passed away October 23, 1845 leaving the baby girl 6 months old. The oldest daughter, Adaline, who had married William McKay, took her baby sister and gave her a home until she married at about 40 or 45 years of age.

After the death of his first wife, Uncle Jake married Betsy Williams of near Hillsboro. She had two children, William P. and Alice. After their marriage they made their home on the old farm where they finished rearing their children, and two children born to them, Crease and Matilda. Aunt Betsy's son, Bill, was known as Bill Jake Williams after her marriage to Uncle Jake. About 1855 or 60, Bill married Matilda Lee, daughter of Israel Lee. They had the following children: Lawson, Dexter, John, Albert, Bertha, Ellen, Luther, and Jess. Alice, Bill's sister, married Doc Lee, a brother of Bill's wife.

Crease, oldest daughter of Jacob and Betsy Wilson, married Dick Mayfield, a son of John Mayfield, who came from Kentucky and settled on Jones Creek near what is now Mayfield School, early in the 19th century. These Mayfields are related to the Mayfield family of Bolinger County who founded Will Mayfield College, and the Mayfield Hospital in St. Louis.

Born in 1855 and died in 1907, Matilda, youngest daughter of Jacob and Betsy Wilson, married Israel E. Lee, Jr. in the early '70s. To this union two sons, J. Lawson and Melvin, were born. Melvin died 1887 at the age of 13 years. Lawson married Fannie, daughter of John and Frances Lee. They have two sons, Ralph and Elbert. Lawson is a grandson of Israel Lee of Tennessee, and Fannie is a granddaughter of Harrison Lee, of Kentucky. Israel and Harrison were not related so far as they knew. Israel Lee, Jr. was born in 1848 and died in 1920.

Uncle Jake died 1876 or 77. A record of Uncle Jake's children, by his first wife, and their families follows.



Uncle Billy and Aunt Adaline (nee Wilson) Mckay

Adaline, eldest daughter of Jacob Wilson was united in marriage to William McKay, son of Samuel McKay, about 1839. After their marriage they settled about 1-1/2 miles southwest of her father where Uncle Billy cleared a farm and lived until 1875 or 76. Mrs. Fiel owns the farm at present [1937]. The old house stood on the same site as what was called the "Red House". On this farm Uncle Billy and Aunt Adeline reared their family and spent most of their married lives, which, like all pioneer fathers and mothers was one of toil and sacrifice. Uncle Billy entered the ministry, as a Baptist preacher in early life and preached regularly for 50 years. Although he had little opportunity to go to school, he had a wonderful mind and by reading and study at home, he educated himself until he was recognized as one of the best Bible scholars of his time and community and a preacher second to none. He served as pastor to practically every Baptist church in Jefferson County as well as some in Franklin, Washington and St. Francois County. He made monthly trips on horseback to the old Three Rivers Church in St. Francois County which is 35 or 40 miles from Grubville, and it was not uncommon for him too pastorate churches 10 to 15 miles from home. At that time Baptist churches had a Saturday evening service at which time they conducted the business of the church and had a sermon also. The pastor was supposed to be there for Saturday evening services and seldom failed to do so. They also had services on Saturday night, Sunday and Sunday night, and the preacher had to ride home after Sunday night services or stay all night with some of the members and go home Monday morning. He usually went Sunday night so he could start work on the farm Monday morning. Besides preaching for four churches monthly, Uncle Billy was called far and near to preach funerals, perform marriage ceremonies, and visit the sick. It is probable he preached more funerals and married more couples than any other minister of his day in the county.

The life of the pioneer minister was indeed a hard one, and for all his sacrifice and hardships he received a mere pittance. Since his work as a minister demanded so much of his time he could not operate his farm successfully, and he became indebted to such an extent that he had to sell his farm about 1875 or 76, and leave the home that had been his so long. The place where he took Aunt Adaline as a bride, the place that had been home, not only to them and their children, but to the homeless from every quarter. It was to this home that the people of the community, who were in trouble, went to Uncle Billy for advice and consolation. In this home many homeless children found a temporary refuge. It was at this home, the men of this community who went to California in 1849, met and had religious services before starting.

In 1858 or 59, Samuel McKay, Uncle Billy's brother, died in Texas leaving several children. Uncle Billy drove to Texas and brought the children back to Missouri where he and his brother Michael, cared for them until they were able to care for themselves. After leaving the old home, Uncle Billy lived at different places for a few years. About 1880 to 1885 he built a house on a farm belonging to his son-in-law, Frank Wideman. This farm was on Big River just above the mouth of Old Ditch Creek. Here they lived until Aunt Adaline's death about 1890. About 1892, Uncle Billy married a Mrs. Partney of near Hillsboro, and moved to her farm where he lived until his death in 1901 at the age of 85 years. He and his first wife were buried at the Bethlehem Cemetery.

The writer attended a revival service at the Ware Church shortly before Uncle Billy's death. He was present that night. On being invited to make a few remarks he tottered to the pulpit and spoke very briefly. In concluding, he stated that he had preached the Gospel for over fifty years in Jefferson and surrounding counties, and that he was happy to be able to stand before those present and testify that there is reality in the religion of the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. He read Second Timothy 4:7-8:

"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith. Henceforth, there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge shall give me that day, and not to me only but unto all them also that love his appearing".
To Uncle Billy and Aunt Adaline the following children were born: Margaret 1840, Michael Silas about 1844, Amanda about 1847, Jane about 1850, Mary about 1854, Jim about 1859, and Jake 1863. They reared Aunt Adaline's baby sister, Winnie, taking her at the age of six months at the death of her mother in 1845.



The Carrow Family

Margaret, eldest daughter of William and Adaline McKay, married Jack [Jackson J.], or J. J., Carrow February 24, 1858. They settled about 1/2 mile west of where William Wiley now lives, where they lived at the time of Jack's death 1881. Jack was born 1838, and was the son of J. and Martha Virginia (nee Lee) Carrow. Martha Virginia Lee was born in Kentucky and came with her father to Missouri when a child. She was the daughter of John and Polly (nee Van Hook) Lee and a sister of Harrison Lee. After Jack's death his wife continued to live on the farm where she finished rearing the family. For several years before her death she lived with her son, Price, on a farm about a mile west of her old home. Here she died in 1931. To this couple the following children were born: Ardell, December 18, 1859; Price, 1861; Giles Lee 1864; Jennie 1866; Calista; John 1875; Laura and Jack 1882.

Ardell married Tobias Dickey about 1880 or 82. The following children were born to them: Martha, who married Edward Crawford; Margaret, who married Lewis Birk; Catherine, who first married William Partney and later W. W. Thompson; Veazy who married William Marshall; Charles and Mary. Ardell died 1929.

Price married Laura, daughter of Judge William Franklin Williams, about 1880 or 82. Three or four children were born to them. Two lived to be grown: Clyde, born 1883, died 1931, was never married; John, who was younger than Clyde died about 1934. Price separated from his first wife, and about 1897 or 98, after the death of his brother Giles, he married Giles' widow. They had one child that lived to maturity, Margaret, who married a Maness. The second wife has been dead something like 15 years [1937].

Giles married Effie Wade, daughter of John Wade, about 1885 or 86. They had four children: Minnie, Otto, Calista, and Lee. Minnie married Mr. Broombaugh; Otto married a Wideman; Calista married W. E. Townsend and Lee married Kennedy Clover. Giles, the father of above children died 1896.



Family of Catherine (nee Wilson) Frost
Daughter of Ephraim Wilson and Great Aunt to C.O. Lee

Catherine Wilson married Frank Frost of Crawford County about 1841 and settled joining her father on the west in 1844. To them were born three sons and two daughters that lived to be grown: Jasper 1842, Dick 1847, Cyrus, Melvina 1856, Kansas V. 1858. Mr. Frost was a prosperous farmer, besides being a carpenter and blacksmith and wagon maker. He was the first Post Master at Grubville and at one time represented Jefferson County in the state legislature in 1874, also was Public Administrator of the County 1860 - 1864. His family came from Kentucky to Missouri in 1822 when he was a child and settled in Washington County near Berryman on Lost Creek and moved to Crawford County in 1835.

During his early married days he did considerable work in the shop making plows and wagons, getting the timber used from his farm. In making hubs he got an oak log of the proper diameter and sawed off the required length and with a tool called a hub auger he bored a hole through the block lengthwise to fit the axle. In this block he bored and chiseled holes for the spokes, which he also made by hand. The axles were what were called wooden axles, they had no skin or thimble of iron on the end. There was a flat stap of iron above and below, fastened at one end by the bolt through the axle to hold the bolster behind and the sand board in front, and extending to the end of the axle. Through the ends of the axles and through the ends of these iron straps holes were made into which iron pins were fitted, known as linch pins, to hold the wheel on the axle.

Instead of greasing these wagons they used tar on the axle. In the iron bands on the outside end of the hubs there was a slot cut far enough in, to come even with the holes in the axle and iron straps to allow the linch pin to be put through the hole in the end of the axle When the wheel was taken off or put on, the wheel had to be turned so the slot in the hub was up. The upper end of the pin had an extension on the outside to aid in getting it out. The pin that held the doubletree on was an iron handled hammer. The end of the handle was flattened in such a way as to fit under the extension on the pin and lift it out. This hammer came in handy when a hammer was needed.

Aunt Catherine and Uncle Frank spent their entire married life after coming to Jefferson County in 1844, where they first settled, except about two years in 1867 or 68 when they moved to St. James, Missouri, to school their children. They were public spirited citizens and good neighbors. Where there was sickness in the community, whether they belonged to the Wilson clan or not, Aunt Catherine was there ready to lend a helping hand. She had a fine gray saddle horse, old John, and it was a common thing to see Aunt Catherine going in a pace to visit some sick neighbor, with a basket on her lap and a sack on her saddle. She took something she thought would be good for the sick one as well as for the children in the family, such as light bread, buns, cookies, jelly, preserves, canned peaches, fresh meat, and apples if the family did not have apples. The writer well remembers seeing Aunt Catherine come pacing up on old John, when mother was sick, with her well filled baskets and sack. She did not come just occasionally, she made regular visits where there was sickness in the community.

One son, Cyrus, died when he was about grown. The other children married and all settled within 1-1/2 miles of their parents. Dick and Jasper settled just across the line in Franklin County and the girls in Jefferson County, Kansas V. joining her father on the north. The writer remembers visiting Aunt Catherine with his mother, brother 7 years old, and sister 2 years old, going on horseback, and all four riding one horse. The two boys riding behind and mother carring the baby in her lap, and staying all night. This was in January 1878. Aunt Catherine was an excellent cook, as was all her sisters, and the table was loaded with everything found on the table of the prosperous farmer of those days, and near the fireplace was the well filled apple basket. The younger daughter, Kansas V. had recently married David Perkins and she and her husband were staying with her father while building their house about 1/4 mile north.

At an early day, the settlers of the Frost and Wilson settlement had good houses. Uncle Frank had a six room house. Two rooms upstairs and two down with a wide hall between them and a kitchen and dining room on the north. Still in use. In their declining years, Uncle Frank and Aunt Catherine kept their granddaughter, Fannie Lee, daughter of Melvina, with them and after Fannie's marriage to M. L. McDermot, she and her husband stayed with her grandparents. Here is where they had lived together for near 60 years until Uncle Frank and Aunt Catherine passed away. She in 1901 and he in 1904. They were both laid to rest in the new cemetery at the church. They were both Baptists and Uncle Frank was a Democrat and a Mason.



Family of Jasper Frost
Son of Frank and Catherine (nee Wilson) Frost

Jasper Frost was born in 1842 and grew up on his father's farm 1/4 mile east of the Grubville Post Office. About 1865, he married Margaret Lee, an orphan girl who at that time was making her home with her Aunt Adaline, wife of John M. Wilson. They settled over the line in Franklin County about one mile northwest of the Grubville Post Office. They separated in a few months, possibly a year, she going back to her aunt's. He sold his personal property and went west where he stayed several years. He returned about 1870-72 and in about 1874 married Hulda Henry and settled on his farm which he enlarged until he had several hundred acres. Here he prospered and became a well to do farmer and stock raiser. He died in 1896 and was buried in the Grubville Cemetery. To this couple were born five boys and two girls: Frank, Tom, William, Kate, John, Bert, and Hazel.



Family of Dick Frost
Son of Frank and Catherine (nee Wilson) Frost

In about 1873, George Richard [Dick] Frost, a country teacher, married Jennie Sullens, daughter of Isaac Sullens, of near Fenton. She was also a teacher. They both taught before and after they were married. Before marrying, Uncle Dick had built a fine house for those days, just over the line one mile north of his father in Franklin County on a good piece of land. Here they settled after their marriage and reared their family of two sons and two daughters: Ed, Iva, Guy, and Grace.

Edward, the eldest son was born 1875 and died Feb. 1896. He was a large, fine looking young man of high ideals, and high moral standards. He had a certificate from the Cape Giradeau Normal School at the time of his death he was teaching the Hickory Flat Country School which was his home school. He was buried in the cemetery at the Grubville Church.

Uncle Dick and Aunt Jennie were both good, public spirited citizens, and both being teachers, seemed to take a special interest in the young folks, and probably did more to entertain them than any other family in the community. While they were not wealthy they had plenty and their visitors were numerous and, as Aunt Jennie was a famous cook they were well fed.

After marriage she taught only a few schools, but spent her time doing the housework, caring for the children, the garden and raising chickens. It is the writer's opinion that there were few, if any, women of her time that worked longer hours or did more work than Aunt Jennie did. She, like her mother-in-law Aunt Catherine, was always ready to lend a helping hand in case of sickness. She rode far and near to spend the night caring for sick people. It was nothing uncommon to see her at 9 or 10 o'clock at night on horseback carrying a lantern going to care for some sick neighbor or to see her at daylight returning from the bedside of some sick person. The exposure and loss of sleep she could stand was the talk of the neighborhood. She was a loyal member of the Fair View Methodist Church after it was organized, and a regular attendant at Sunday School and church services.

After his marriage, Uncle Dick taught and farmed until about 1887 or 88. About that time, "The Wheelers," a farm organization, formed a company and started a store, known as "the Wheeler Store." All members of the organization and possibly nonmembers, could buy stocks in the company. Each stock was $5.00. Practically everyone in the surrounding country owned one or more stocks. They built a store house just across the road west of the present store building in 1888 and engaged in the mercantile business, with Uncle Dick as general manager assisted by a clerk and a purchasing agent who hauled the produce taken into St. Louis and purchased stock for the store and hauled it back. It was owned and operated by farmers who believed the individually owned store sold too high, a belief in which they were probably justified. They sold at a profit of 10% and for cash, and as no one got big wages and the trade large, the business was a big success from the beginning. Here Uncle Dick worked for several years. After the company sold out to private individuals, he became Post Master of Grubville, where he served until his death - a term of over 25 years.

Uncle Dick was a big jolly fellow, standing about 6 feet tall and weighing 200 pounds, and all who knew him were his friends. He was educated at the old Grubville School, starting in the first house ever built, which was made of logs, had a dirt floor and was heated by a fireplace. For seats they used split logs. Just exactly the date it was built is not known. Later they built another house about 200 yards west of the first. This was a frame building. The timber being cut and hewn by hand. It was weather boarded outside and plastered inside. The laths used to put the plaster on was split by hand from oak timber cut in the surrounding woods. The desks and seats were made of wide pine boards, long enough to seat three or four to the seat. The black board was made of three or four long pine boards fastened together side by side with holes bored in the top plank to fit on pins set in the north end wall. The door, which was handmade was in the south end, and hung on handmade hinges and fastened by a handmade latch.

As a teacher he was one of the best of his day, and his services were always in demand. He taught in both Franklin and Jefferson counties, but most of his time was spent in the Grubville School or Hickory Flat in Franklin County. He taught reading, writing, spelling, arithmetic, geography and a little grammar and history and he did it thoroughly. His teaching of place geography could not be excelled. He used large wall maps and a pointer to point out the countries, leading cities, mountains, rivers, seas, oceans, lakes, straights, gulfs, bays, capes and islands. He also taught us the capitals of all the states, their location, for example, Jackson on the Pearl. He taught us to describe the leading rivers of the world, for example, "The Ohio River is formed by the junction of the Allegheny and Monongahela rivers in western Pennsylvania, flows southwest and empties into the Mississippi River." While not highly educated, he had the turn to get along with his pupils and keep them interested, but woe unto the fellow who got into a fight or otherwise misbehaved. He got the seat whipped out of his pants before he knew what it was all about. Besides being a good teacher, he was a good farmer and stock raiser. Long before the days of automobiles he raised and drove the fastest team in the community, and he didn't hesitate to turn it loose.

The first day the writer ever attended school, Uncle Dick was teacher and he well remembers the copy given him to write, and how scared he was of getting a whipping because he couldn't write it. At that time the school term was usually four months and the pupils went from the age of six to 20, and older if the directors didn't object. It was the writer's good fortune to have Uncle Dick for teacher for several years. Besides working for him at different times on the farm, I also worked under him as Rural Letter Carrier out of the Grubville Post Office from 1916 to 1931. We can say of Uncle Dick that he was absolutely honest and upright in all his dealings, always ready to admit mistake and correct it. To his last days he was pleasant and agreeable to work with and met everyone with a smile. He was a Baptist, a Freemason, a Woodman, and a Democrat.

Iva married George Wagner. To them was born one child. Guy married Bertha Martin of Franklin County. To them were born two sons, Vergil and RichardGuy lives on his father's old farm [1937].

Grace married Esam Whitworth of Franklin County in 1905. They had five children: Forest, Thelma, Pearl, E. C., and Lona.



Family of Melvina (nee Frost) Lee
Daughter of Frank and Catherine (nee Wilson) Frost

About 1872-73, Melvina Frost married William F. Lee (born 1846), son of Israel Lee, and settled about one mile north of her father. Here they lived until their family was almost raised. To them was born several children: Fannie, Kate, Mary, Fred, Varney, Arch, and Raliegh.

Fannie wed Mick L. McDermott about 1898. To them were born six children: Philip, Leo, Edwin, Eugene, Bernice, and Lyman. Lyman was killed in an auto accident in 1937.

Kate wed William Stovesand and to them were born seven children: Joe, Florine, Richard, Marie, Leroy, Robert, and Alice Lee.

Mary wed William Schubel. [No information on children.]

Fred wed Mary Manion about 1900. One son Virgil was born to them. When the child was small they separated. He later married Fannie Manion, a sister to his first wife. Fred died and was buried at Grubville.

Varney wed Mr. Pat McDermott. They have no children.



Kansas V. (nee Frost) Perkins
Daughter of Frank and Catherine (nee Wilson) Frost

Kansas Virginia [Kanney] Frost wed David Perkins and settled 1/4 mile north of her father where they lived their entire married life, except two years they lived on Lost Creek, Washington County. Uncle Dave started out as a farmer, but in a short time put up a store and engaged in the mercantile business for several years, but at the same time continued to farm. He was a successful businessman, and accumulated considerable property. To this union was born nine children: Elmer 1877, John 1879, Laura 1881, Cora 1883, Grover C. 1885, David E. 1889, Floyd 1894 [a daughter], Catherine 1896, and George Pat 1900. Elmer died in 1885, John in 1903.

Laura wed William Henry 1898. Six children were born to them: Everet 1899, John [called Jack] 1901, Grover 1903, Clarence 1906, Lucy 1912, and Willa Lee [called Billy] 1920.

Cora wed Arthur Wagoner. They have no children.

Grover C. went to Montana in 1906 or 1907 where he wed Nellie Townsend. They had three children: Howard, Delmon, and Lois Mae. He died and was buried there.

David E. Perkins married Jennie Mallow of Lost Creek. In 1919, he went to Montana where has since lived. They have three children: Virginia, David, and James.

El has made good, as he is a good businessman. He is assessor of his company, and is an undertaker.

Floyd Perkins wed Claude E. Henry in 1912. To them four children were born: Forest 1913, Frances 1914, Ward 1916 [was blind], and Glen 1929.

George Pat Perkins wed a woman from St. Clair, Missouri. [No information on children.]

Catherine Perkins wed Frank Lewis of Montana. They have three children: Joseph, Robert, and Mary K. Her husband, Mr. Lewis, is an educator, and is employed in Illinois.



The McKay Family

Sometime about 1813, there was a wagon train left Abbeville, South Carolina, for Missouri. In this train came the ancestors of the McKays and the McKees of Jefferson County. Just how many of each family came is not known to the writer. However, it is known that Michael and William Seth McKee and families came. They were the sons of Adam McKee who came from Scotland during the Revolutionary War and settled at Abbeville, South Carolina. William S. McKee married Mary F. McKay in South Carolina some two or three years before coming to Missouri [1811], according to the information of writer and Samuel McKay, thought to be a brother of Mary F. McKay, married a daughter of Michael McKee a year or two before leaving South Carolina and came to Missouri with his father-in-law. Michael McKee seems to have been considerably older than his brother, William Seth, as he had a daughter old enough to be married before leaving South Carolina.

Samuel McKay was of Scotch-Irish descent and must have been born near 1787. Whether he was born in America is not known, but it seems probable he was. According to the information at hand, he had one or two children when he came to Missouri. His children were as follows: William born 1816, Samuel Jr., date of birth not known, Isabel, Michael born 1821, and Polly. He seems to have been a "rolling stone" and lived first at one place and then another in Jefferson County, until about the middle of the 19th century. Previous to that time he had made a trip to Texas and back. [In 1847, son Michael McKay married Betty Wilson and reared a family on Jones Creek. They are C. 0. Lee's grandparents. See John Robert Wilson Family.] Sometime about 1850, he [Samuel McKay], his wife, son Samuel, daughters, Isabel, who had married a Pierce, and Polly started to Texas. He was a drinking, fighting Irishman who allowed no man to insult him without a fight. One night after they had gotten pretty near their destination they stopped by the side of the trail, as usual, to camp for the night. Nearby, another wagon train had camped for the night. Some of the men from the camp came to the McKay camp, and while there bartered Samuel for a horse trade. The stranger asked how old the horse was and on being told he called Samuel a liar. He was preparing to fry meat in a heavy skillet and he struck the stranger on the head with the skillet and knocked him out. The friends of the injured man took him back to camp. That night the McKays decided that the injured man might be fatally injured and that Samuel had better get away that night and stay off the trail a few days. So he left in the night with the understanding he would join them on the trail farther on in a few days. He was never seen or heard from again by his family. This information was given the writer by Uncle Seth W. McKee, a half brother of Samuel McKay's wife, and he said he got it through Nathan Pierce, a son-in-law of Mr. McKay, who was present when the incident occurred. So where, when and how Samuel McKay met death none of his family ever knew.

The other members of the party continued on to their destination. The son, Samuel Jr., and wife died in a few years leaving four children. Uncle Billy, oldest son of Samuel McKay, Sr., went to Texas about 1858 or 1859 and brought the children back to Missouri. He expected to bring his mother back, too, but they decided she was too feeble to undertake the trip. She remained with her daughters, Mrs. Pierce and Polly, until her death in the early 1860's. After her death, Aunt Polly and the Pierce family came back to Missouri.



Family of William (Billy) McKay
Husband of Adeline (nee Wilson), Son-In-Law of Jacob Wilson

William McKay's mother was a daughter of Michael McKee who came from Abbeville, South Carolina, about 1815 to 17 and settled in Missouri. Samuel McKay, Uncle Billy's father, and Mary F. McKay, a sister of Samuel, came in the same wagon trail with Michael McKee and his brothers, William S. and Harvey, and a sister, Rebecca. William Seth McKee, brother of Michael, married Mary F. McKay, probably before leaving South Carolina. It is also probable that Samuel McKay married the daughter of Michael McKee before leaving South Carolina [1811], and it is possible Uncle Billy was born in South Carolina. The father of the above-mentioned McKee family was Adam McKee who came from Scotland during the Revolutionary War and settled at Abbeville, South Carolina.


History of the Lee Family

John Lee was born near Stratford, Virginia, about 1770. His father, who was also named John came from England to Virginia in an early day where he settled and reared a family. When John Junior grew to manhood he married Polly Van Hook, daughter of Samuel Van Hook, about 1792. They moved from Stratford to Rockingham County, Virginia, date not known, where in 1798 one son, James Hagland, was born. It is thought they had three sons older than James.

In 1799, they moved to Harrison County, Kentucky, where they stopped to spend the winter in a vacant cabin while the husband and father was looking for a location that suited him. In this cabin, Samuel Van Hook was born the 25th of January 1800. In the spring of 1800, he moved the family to their new home near Sylvandale, where he cleared a large farm and reared a large family, as follows: Jackson 1795, Abner 1793, Giles 1797, James H. 1798, Samuel Van Hook 1800, Archilles 1802, Israel 1805, Harrison 1813, Ann, Hannah, Nancy, and another sister [Martha Virginia]. Two children died and were buried on the old farm sometime in the 1820's. Date of birth of daughters is not known by writer. The exact date of Abner and Jackson's birth is not known, but the writer's grandfather, Harrison, told him that he had two brothers, serving under General William H. Harrison in the War of 1812. Harrison was born February 16, 1813, and the two brothers came home on a furlough when he was an infant and named him Louis Harrison in honor of Generals Louis and William H. Harrison.

As the writer remembers it, his grandfather told him the names of the brothers who served in the War of 1812 were Abner and Jackson, and that their ages were 20 and 18. Giles came to Jefferson County 1821 and settled near Hematite. Archilles was married in Jefferson County 1828. Just when he came here is not known. Harrison came about 1829 and it is probable his father and some of the other younger children came at the same time.

From the best information obtainable, it seems that all the family except one son, Samuel Van Hook, and one daughter, Hannah, who married John Snodgrass, left Kentucky in an early day. Nancy married John Austin and moved to Indiana. Ann married John Roberts; where she went from Kentucky is not known. James Hagland married Polly Pope and had 2 daughters, Mary and Nancy. Polly (nee Pope) Lee died in Kentucky. In 1819, he married Nancy McKay. To this union nine sons were born. James H. Lee went to Indiana but the exact date is not known. However, it is known he died in Cumberland County, Indiana, 1852, and that four of his nine sons served in the Mexican War and eight served in the Union Army in the Civil War, and that they enlisted in Indiana.

The writer has no information as to where Abner went from Kentucky. Jackson came to Missouri, and settled in the western part of the state where he reared a family.

One daughter, whose given name is not known [Martha Virginia - see Carrow Family], came to Missouri and married a man by the name of Carrow. As far as the writer knows she had but one child, Jackson J. Carrow. She died young.

John and Polly (nee Van Hook) Lee were both members of the Methodist Church.



Family of Louis Harrison Lee
Son of John and Polly (nee Van Hook) Lee, Grandfather of C.O. Lee

On February 16, 1813, Louis Harrison Lee was born near Louisville, Kentucky (on Bushy Branch of Beaver Creek in Clayville). His father and mother [Polly], whose maiden name was Van Hook, had come from Virginia to Kentucky near the close of the 18th century. He was one among the youngest of a family of fifteen and at the time of his birth had two brothers fighting under General William H. Harrison in the War of 1812. When he was a few days old, these brothers, one 20 and the other 18 years old, came home on a furlough and named him Louis Harrison in honor of General Harrison and some other officers. In 1829, his father with most of his children came to Missouri and settled in Jefferson County. Several settled in the vicinity of Hematite. Two of his brothers acquired a strip of land just west of Morse Mill extending from Big River over to where the Morse Mill School now stands.

In 1840, Harrison Lee wed Margaret Julia Graham of near Frumett, Missouri. She being 16 and he 21 years of age. After their marriage they lived on the land owned by his brothers near Morse Mill. Here, two or three children were born. From here he moved to Jones Creek and settled about one mile above what was then the James Hanvey place on a tributary to Jones Creek and about 1/2 mile west of main Jones Creek. Here he stayed for sometime when he moved near Bethlehem Church where he settled on a tract of land on the head of Bethlehem Creek. Here the remainder of a family of 11 children were born, and they all lived until they were all grown. The children were: Oliver H. 1841, John T. 1843, William T. 1845 [1844], Mildred 1847, Arah 1849, Sophronia [1853], Martha Adaline [1854], Angeline [1856], Sarah [1858], George [1861], and Ruth [1864].

[Lewis Harrison Lee died July 20, 1890, in Jefferson County, Missouri - heart attack - age 77.]

[Mrs. Flae Lee Johnson, one of his great-granddaughters, was born on Harrison Lee's birthday. His portrait can be seen in her home (1987).]

  • Oliver Henry Lee married Margaret Ann Wilson;
  • John Thompson Lee married Margaret Frances McKay;
  • William Theodore Lee married Mary Gately or Dunnigau (she was a widow and her maiden name was one of the above);
  • Mary Mildred Lee married George Steel;
  • Arah Melvina Lee married Sattlieb Sieners;
  • Martha Adaline Lee married Oliver D. Bittick;
  • Saphronia Ann Lee married Charles Winer;
  • Margaret Angeline Lee married John Crull;
  • Susan Ruth Lee married Ephriam S. Frost;
  • George Harrison Lee married Frances Whitworth (Aunt Fannie).
###This ends the writings of C.O. Lee###




John Thompson and Margaret Frances (nee McKay) Lee<BR>with two of their nieces

John Thompson and Margaret Frances (nee McKay) Lee
with two of their nieces





The children of C. O. and Mary (nee Johns) Lee<BR>Photo taken in the late '40s or early '50s.

The children of C. O. and Mary (nee Johns) Lee
Photo taken in 1942.





Generously contributed by John Lee, jclee@tenet.edu.


The Jefferson County MOGenWeb would like to thank Mr. John Lee for his contribution of this wonderful History of Jefferson County and the History of the Lee Family, written by his grandfather, C.O. Lee. This story tells it better than we could have written it because Mr. C.O. Lee was there.....

I hope that some of you are inspired by this story and will find some leads to your ancestors. I am sure we have all gained at least some insight into what life was like in their time. Thank you very much, once again, for your contribution, Mr. Lee.

Patty Frazer,
Former County Coordinator,
Jefferson County MOGenWeb


Send E-mail
Send comments:
jeffco@kuhlmanweb.com

Thanks for stopping by!
You are the

visitor since April 10, 1999.
This page last updated
Wednesday, 06-Nov-2002 14:52:08 MST.

©1999-2001, Patricia A. Frazer. All rights reserved.
Back to Home
Back to Jefferson
County Home Page


Web space provided by RootsWeb.