Biography of Francis Dudley Hardesty (1830-1916)
Portrait and Biographical Record:  St. Charles, Lincoln, and Warren Counties, Missouri. (Chapman Publishing Company, 1895), pp. 489-490.

FRANCIS DUDLEY HARDESTY. The Bank of Winfield was founded June 11, 1894, with the following officers: President, F.D. HARDESTY; Vice-President, William BECKERMEYER; and Cashier, John M. BARTON. The Directors are Henry ELSTROTH, Dr. HEWITT, Samuel MARKS, John MILLER and D.T. KILLAM. After the incorporation of Winfield, Mr. HARDESTY was chosen the first Chairman of the Town Board, and has since been closely associated with the management of the offices. He has frequently been Assessor, and his name is always at the head of every movement for the advancement of the place. For eighteen years he served as administrator of the estate of John ELSTON which was valued at $30,000. He was appointed to the position, and afterward was personally commended by the Probate Court for the manner in which he conducted the business.

Mr. HARDESTY was born in Bourbon County, Ky., November 8, 1830, and is the youngest of ten children comprising the family of Capt. William H. and Jane (NOE) HARDESTY. Six of the household are still living. Mrs. Drucilla HENDRICKS, the oldest who is more than eighty-five years of age, is remarkably well-preserved, and has never worn spectacles. George W. is nearly eighty-four years old. Mrs. Martha Ann KNIGHT is seventy, Mrs. Elizabeth ALLEN sixty-eight, and Mrs. Margaret N. MONEY sixty-six.

Capt. William H. HARDESTY was born in Maryland, March 21, 1777, and when he was a child of five years went with his parents to Kentucky. He learned the carpenter's trade, and one of the buildings which he constructed, a home built of blue ash logs, is still standing in a good state of preservation, though erected over ninety years ago. It is now one of the old landmarks of Bourbon County. When thirty years of age he embarked in farming, and continued in that vocation until his declining years, in the mean time having given each of his children a good start in life. His last years were passed with them, his death occurring in March 1858, in his eightieth year. His father, Benjamin HARDESTY, removed to Kentucky in 1762, with the families of CLAY and OFFITT, who built the fort at Bryants Station, Fayette County.

In the public schools of the neighborhood our subject received a fair education. He remained with his parents until he was twenty years of age, and in November, 1850, came to Missouri, renting a place of ground, on which he raised a crop of tobacco. This venture proving successful, he continued to give his attention to that occupation in connection with general farm work. October 12, 1852, he married Miss Mary M., daughter of William and Elizabeth (CRENSHAW) OVERALL, natives of Kentucky. Shortly after his marriage his father-in-law gave him an eighty acre tract on which he and his wife commenced housekeeping. In 1856 he bought an addition tract of eighty acres, and this place he continued to cultivate until 1880. He then rented his farm and moved to Winfield, where he engaged in the hardware business in partnership with D. T. KILLAM. Later our subject bought out the other member of the firm and from that time until 1892 conducted the business alone.

The first wife of Mr. HARDESTY died November 15, 1886. February 6, 1888, he married Angeline (DORSEY) DAWKINS, widow of G.W. DAWKINS, and their wedded life has been an unusually happy one. Since selling out his business Mr. Hardesty has devoted his energies to many fields of financial activity, and in nearly every instance has met with success. He affiliates with the Democatric party, but has never been an aspirant for office. An active member of the Baptist Church, he has filled the office of Clerk and Deacon for the past thirty-four years, and is always to be found participating in charitable work and benevolent enterprise.

File submitted to HERITAGE PAGES of LINCOLN COUNTY, MISSOURI by Patricia SummersSmith, 20 September 1998.  Link change or update: 23 May 2000

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