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Pettis County, Missouri

Excerpted from The History of Pettis County, Missouri by Mark McGruder - 1919


Edwin W. O'Daniels, a prominent farmer and stockman of Prairie township, is a native of Illinois. He was born in St. Clair County, Illinois, April 7, 1867, son of Hugh H. and Caroline E. (Akiman) O'Daniels. Hugh H. O'Daniels was born near Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, and, when he was a boy, freighted across the Allegheny mountains, east from Pittsburg. During his freighting experience, he hauled many a barrel of whiskey over the Allegheny mountains, although he never drank a drop of liquor in his life. He was a son of Elija O'Daniels, who was also a native of Pennsylvania. The O'Daniels family is of Irish descent. Elija O'Daniels, father of Hugh H., went to Illinois from Pennsylvania with his family at a very early day in the settlement of Illinois. Hugh O'Daniels was about fifteen years old then. He obtained a very good education and practiced veterinary surgery and farmed in Illinois until 1886. He then came to Missouri with his family and settled in Pettis county. He died here December 11, of that year aged fifty-nine years. His wife, Caroline E. (Akiman) O'Daniels, was born in Ashley, Illinois, and now lives at Hutchinson, Kansas, at the age of seventy-nine years.

Edwin W. O'Daniels was one of a family of eight children born to his parents, four of whom are now living. Edwin W. was about nineteen years of age when he came to Pettis County with his parents. He had received a good common-school education and began life here as a farm laborer. Later, he rented land and continued to farm rented land until 1911, when he bought his present place of 146 acres, in section 7, Prairie Township. He has a well improved and valuable farm, where he is successfully carrying on general farming and stock raising. This place is known as the old Pauline place. At one time there was quite a pretentious village located on Mr. O'Daniels farm. There was a postoffice, store and blacksmith shop, which were about all the necessary accessories to a flourishing town in the early days. The place was homesteaded by Daniel Botts.

Mr. O'Daniels was united in marriage, January 11, 1896, with Miss Lena M. DeJarnette, a native of Pettis County, and a daughter of Mayo and Mayetta (Gardner) DeJarnette, natives of Kentucky, who settled in Pettis County before the Civil War. To Mr. and Mrs. O'Daniels have been born seven children, as follows: Opal H., who was educated in the Sedalia High School and the State Normal School at Warrensburg, is now one of Pettis County's successful teachers; Leo M., who was educated in Sedalia and Green Ridge, is also successfully engaged in teaching in this county; Mildred, Edna M., Jewell H., Hugh H., and Dennis E.

Mr. O'Daniels is a member of the Modern Woodmen of America and is a Republican. He is one of Pettis County's well-known and substantial citizens and the O'Daniels family are widely known and highly respected.