File submitted for USGenWeb/MOGenWeb Lincoln County Missouri History Page by Betty Lavy Krieg, 1 December 2001.  Link change or update: 26 Jan 2002

County Officers to 1888
Last updated: 19 Jan 2002

History of Lincoln County, Chicago: Goodspeed Publishing Company, 1888



The following is a list of officers of Lincoln County from its organization down to the present year, 1888.


State Senators


Of those who lived in the county and represented the Senatorial District in the Legislature: Carry K. DUNCAN was elected in 1824; Hans SMITH, 1834; Henry WATTS, 1838; James FINLEY, 1840; M. H. McFARLAND, 1856; Thomas G. HUTT, 1880. All of these served four years, except Henry WATTS, who died in office, and James FINLEY, who filled the unexpired term.




Christopher CLARK, 1818-20; Morgan WRIGHT, 1820-22; Philip SITTON, 1822-24; John RULAND, 1824-26; Philip SITTON, 1826-28; Elijah COLLARD, 1828-30; Hans SMITH, 1830-34; Henry WATTS and John S. BESSER, 1834-36; Henry WATTS and Richard H. WOOLFOLK, 1836-38; George W. HUTSON and Enoch EMERSON, 1838-40; Hans SMITH and Carty WELLS, 1840-42; George W. HUTSON, 1842-44; James FINLEY, 1844-46; David STEWART, 1846-48; Richard WOMMACK, 1848-50; Charles U. PORTER and Alexander REED, 1850-51 *The latter died during the session of the Legislature and January 27, 1851, Tully R. CORNICK was elected to fill the vacancy; Charles U. PORTER and Tully R. CORNICK, 1851-52; James H. BRITTON and Increase ADAMS, 1852-54; James H. BRITTON and M. H. McFARLAND, 1854-56; Richard WOMMACK and John SNETHEN, 1856-58; Richard WOMMACK 1858-60; James W. WELCH, 1860-62; Richard WOMMACK, 1862-64; Joseph W. SITTON, 1864-66; Richard WOMMACK, 1866-68; Richard GLADNEY, 1868-70; Thomas G. HUTT, 1870-72; E. B. HULL, 1872-74; William H. PRIEST, 1874-76; W. E. BROWN, 1876-78; Alexander MUDD, 1878-80; Howard S. PARKER, 1880-84; George T. DUNN, 1884-88.


Members of Constitutional Conventions




Malcolm HENRY, Sr., in 1820, when the original constitution, on the admission of the state into the Federal Union, was prepared and adopted; 1845 Thomas W. HUTT of Lincoln County and Edwin D. BEVITT, of St. Charles, Democrats, ran against Charles WHEELER, of Lincoln, and J. D. COALTER, of St. Charles, Whigs. The latter gentlemen were elected, but the constitution they helped to frame, was, on submission to the people, rejected; 1864, Alexander H. MARTIN; 1875, A. V. McKEE. The constitution then framed was ratified by the people, and has since been the organic law of the State.


Representatives in Congress


Prior to 1848 the representatives in Congress for the State of Missouri were elected at large. The first elections for congressmen by districts were held in 1848, and since that time Lincoln County has been represented in Congress, as follows: William V. N. BAY, 1848-50; Gilchrist PORTER, 1850-52; Alfred W. LAMB, 1852-54; Gilchrist PORTER, 1854-56; James S. ROLLINS, 1860-64; George W. ANDERSON, 1864; David P. DYER, 1868-70; Andrew KING, 1870-72; Aylett N. BUCKNER, 1872-84; J. E. HUTTON, present incumbent, 1884-88.


Circuit Court Clerks


John RULAND, 1819-20; Bennett PALMER, first half of 1821 to his death in August; Francis PARKER, 1821-48; Thomas G. HUTT, 1848-54; Alexander H. MARTIN, 1854 to his resignation in 1869; William COLBERT, 1869-87; Benjamin F. REED, present incumbent, elected in 1886.


County Court Clerks


Bennett PALMER, from organization of the court January 15, 1821 to his death in August following; Francis PARKER, 1821-54; N. H. MERIWETHER, 1854 to his death in March 1857; James A. WARD, 1857-58; Francis C. CAKE, 1858-75; William A. WOODSON; 1875-87; Jesse J. SHAW, the present incumbent, elected in 1886.




David BAILEY, 1819-23; Jonathan RIGGS, 1823-27; Robert STEWART, 1827-31; Henry WATTS, 1831-35; Valentine J. PEERS, 1835-39; William SITTON, 1839-43; Richard WOMMACK, 1843-47; Henry T. MUDD, 1847-49; Joel BLANKS, 1849-53; Richard WOMMACK, 1853-57; Joel BLANKS , 1857-59; Peachy G. SHELTON, 1859-61; Elias NORTON, 1861-63; John R. KNOX, 1863-67; Shapleigh R. WOOLFOLK, 1867-71; Frederick WING, 1871-73; Thomas M. CARTER, 1873-77; James C. ELMORE, 1877-81; A. C. SNETHEN, 1881-85, Beverly DUEY, present incumbent, elected in 1884, and re-elected in 1886.




David BAILEY, 1819-23; Daniel DRAPER, 1823-25; William HAMMOCK, 1825-26; Austin C. WOOLFOLK, 1826-27; Daniel DRAPER, 1827-29; Walter WRIGHT, 1829-32; H. WATTS, 1832-34; Freeland W. ROSE, 1834-35; Benjamin FORD, 1835-39; William SITTON, 1839-42; John A. WOOLFOLK, 1842-43. From the latter date until 1873, the sheriffs of the county were ex-officio collectors of the revenues thereof. In 1872 the separate office of collector was established, and the following is a list of the collectors from that date: William W. SHAW, 1873-75; Peachy G. SHELTON, 1875-79; William B. THORNHILL, 1879-83; Peachy G. SHELTON, 1883-87; William MOORE, present incumbent, elected in 1886. During the first three years of the existence of the county, Sheriff BAILEY collected the revenues, and from that time up to 1843 the taxes were collected part of the time by the sheriffs, and part of the time by collectors other than sheriffs.




Daniel DRAPER, 1825-26; Henry WATTS, 1826-27; Francis PARKER, 1827-33; R. H. WOOLFOLK, 1833-35; Charles WHEELER, 1835-42; William YOUNG, 1842-46; James H. BRITTON, 1846-52; Charles WHEELER, 1852-58; S. R. WOOLFOLK, 1858-66; Frederick WING; 1866-68, James D. SHELTON, 1868-70; James K. CANNON, 1870-72; John McDONALD, 1872-78; Thomas J. NALLEY, 1878-84; William S. BRAGG, 1884 till March, 1888 when he resigned, and was succeeded by H. W. PERKINS, the present incumbent, who was appointed to fill the vacancy.


Assessors of Revenue


Philip SITTON, 1831-32; Austin C. WOOLFOLK, 1832-33; Robert SHELTON, 1833-34; John M. HOPKINS, 1834-35; James REID, 1835-39; Richard WOMMACK, 1839-41; William JAMESON, 1841-42; Henry T. MUDD, 1842-46; Edward J. PEERS, 1846-48; Morgan WRIGHT, 1850-52; Alex. H. MARTIN, 1852-53; Richard WELLS, 1853-54; John M. REED, 1854-58. In 1858 the county was divided into four assessors’ districts, and William MILLER, William T. WILSON, William H. MARTIN, and Richard WOMMACK were appointed by the county court as assessors. Joseph S. GEAR, 1860-62; David B. SMILEY, 1862-66; James K. CANNON, 1866-68; Norman PORTER, 1868-70; Elijah MYERS, 1870-74; John WILSON, 1874-77; David C. DOWNING, 1877-80; Thomas H. HAMMOND, 1880-84; R. S. GILILLAND, 1884-86; William R. CLARK, present incumbent, elected in 1886.




Barnabas THORNHILL, 1820-22; Jehu L. SITTON, 1822-24; John PARKINSON, 1824-26; John CHANDLER, 1826-28; Thomas ARMSTRONG, 1828-30; Bluford STONE, 1830-32; John B. STONE, 1832-36; Joseph B. KELSICK, 1836-38; Barnabas THORNHILL, 1838-40; Alexander WILSON, 1840-42; Baldwin D. TALLIAFERO, 1842-46; William MURPHY, 1846-48; William A. SALLEE, 1848-50; Samuel BARKER, 1850-52; Jordan S. SALLEE, 1852-54; Joseph CHANDLER, 1854-56; J. B. CAMPBELL, 1856-60; J. W. THURMAN, 1860-66; J. B. CAMPBELL, 1866-70; R. A. NURNELLY, 1870-74; George W. ELDER, 1874-76; Robert L. ROBINSON, 1876-82; Talbot N. BRAGG, 1884-86; Charles D. AVERY, 1886-88.


Public Administrators


Elective since 1858: Eugene N. BONFILS, 1858-62; Samuel HOWELL, 1862-64; Robert H. HUDSON, 1864-66; J. B. ALLEN, 1866-68; Elbridge G. SITTON, 1868-72; Josiah CREECH, 1872-76; Jeptha WELLS, 1876-80. H. AVERY, 1880-84; Josiah CREECH, 1884-88.


School Commissioners


William YOUNG, 1853; A. V. McKEE, 1854; Francis C. CAKE, 1857; John R. KNOX, 1860; Francis C. CAKE, 1861; James M. McLELLAN, 1866; William S. PENNINGTON, 1871; John WILSON, 1873; James M. McLELLAN, 1875; Thomas P. DYER, 1879; Horace ROSE, 1881 to his death in 1885; W. T. BAKER, 1885, present incumbent.




Joseph COTTLE, 1819; William HERBERT, 1828-30; James FINLEY, 1830-38; James REID, 1838-40; Nixon PALMER, 1840-46; J. J. PRITCHETT, 1846-51; James REID, 1851-55; A. R. FINLEY, 1855-57; G. G. WILSON____; John C. DOWNING, 1867-72; John F. WILSON, 1872-88.




The office of recorder, in Lincoln County, was never separated from that of the circuit court clerk until 1886, when J. H. ALEXANDER, the present incumbent, was elected recorder. He assumed the duties of his office January 1, 1887. The following is a list of the judges of the circuit court and also of the justices and judges of the county court. Of the latter the time that each individual officer actually served, as shown by the records is given, and may not in all cases cover the whole time during which they held office. The county court was sometimes composed of several officers, only two or three of whom met to hold the sessions. The list has been obtained by an actual and careful search of the records of the proceedings of the court.


Circuit Court Judges


David TODD, 1819-21; Rufus PETTIBONE, 1821-23; Nathaniel Beverly TUCKER, 1823-30; Priestly H. McBRIDE, 1830-36; Ezra HUNT, 1836-49; Carty WELLS, 1849-57; Aylett H. BUCKNER, 1857-62; Thomas J. C. FAGG, 1862-67; Gilchrist PORTER, 1867-72; W. W. EDWARDS, 1872-81; Elijah ROBINSON, 1881-87; Elliott M. HUGHES, present incumbent, elected in 1886, and assumed the duties of his office in 1887.


County Court Justices


Ira COTTLE, 1821-24; Jonathan RIGGS, 1821-22; John GEIGER, 1821-23, Benjamin COTTLE, 1822-25; James DUNCAN, 1823-25; John Lindsey, 1825-28; Thompson BLANTON, Philip SITTON, Daniel DRAPER, Benajah ENGLISH, William HAMMOCK, Barnabas THORNHILL, and Jonathan COTTLE, 1825-26; Samuel SMILEY, 1825-27; Gabriel P. NASH, 1826-28; William W. WOOLBRIDGE, John LOVE and Ira COTTLE, 1826-27; Caleb McFARLAND, 1827-46; James DUNCAN, 1827-31; Joseph H. ALLEN and Henry WATTS, 1828-30; Charles WHEELER, 1830-31; John S. Besser, 1831-34; George W. ZIMMERMAN, 1831-35; William YOUNG, 1834-39; Price W. HAMMOCK, 1835-54; Lewis CASTLEMAN, 1839-42; Solomon R. MOXLEY, 1842-44; Thomas W. HUTT, 1844-46; Charles FERRY and Solomon R. MOXLEY, 1846-50; M. A. SHELTON, 1850-54; James WILSON, 1850-58; Horatio N. BASKETT and Charles W. MARTIN, 1854-58; Solomon R. MOXLEY, 1858-64; John SOUTH, 1858-60; Milton L. LOVELL, 1858-70; William W. SHAW, 1860-61; Samuel T. INGRAM, 1862-73; James WILSON, 1864-67; Solomon R. MOXLEY and James K. CANNON, 1867-69; Norman PORTER, 1867-70; Alexander K. WILSON, 1869-75; John C. DOWNING, 1869-70; Levi BICKEL, 1870-71; Charles W. MARTIN, 1870-77; Henry T. MUDD and N. H. BASKETT, 1875-79; Nathan D. PRESCOTT, 1877-79. District No. 1.—Gion G. WILSON, 1879-83; Jerome B. SITTON, 1883-84; John T. GILMORE, 1884-86; Wilson W. REID, 1886-88. District No. 2—B. B. HARVEY, 1879-80; Lawrence B. SITTON, 1880-83; A. Y. BROWN, 1883-88. Presiding justices—Charles U. PORTER, 1879-83; G. G. WILSON, 1883-88.


Probate Judges


In 1825 Gabriel P. NASH was appointed for four years by the Governor. Before the organization of the county court in 1821, the circuit court exercised probate jurisdiction, and from that time forward, excepting the administration of Judge NASH, the county court exercised probate jurisdiction until 1870, when the probate court, as it now exists, was created by law. Since then the judges have been Solomon R. MOXLEY, 1870-74; E. N. BONFILS, 1874-78; Benjamin W. WHEELER, 1878; re-elected in 1882 and again in 1886—present incumbent.


Prosecuting Attorneys


Benjamin W. WHEELER, 1872-74; Josiah CREECH, 1874-76; George T. DUNN, 1876-78; Robert WALTON, 1878-82; Jeptha WELLS, 1882-84; Howard S. Parker, 1884, to his death January 3, 1886; Nat. C. DRYDEN, 1886—present incumbent.


Brief Sketches of County Officers


Following are brief biographical sketches of many of the county officers, as given by Dr. MUDD in the county atlas, together with necessary changes and additions to make them complete at this time:

Increase ADAMS came from Maine. He conducted a mercantile business several years in Louisville, and left this county in 1860, to reside in Mexico, Audrain County, where he died June 5, 1874, aged about sixty-five years.

Joseph Benson ALLEN was born in Truxton, this county, December 12, 1841; commenced the practice of law in 1860; served in the Eighth Illinois Volunteers during the war. Now resides in Troy and is president of the Temperance Benevolent Association.

Thomas ARMSTRONG was a pioneer settler and preacher. He went to Texas many years ago.

Joel BLANKS was born in Pittsylvania County, Va., February 27, 1800. Married Miss Nancy COMPTON, January 4, 1827, came to this county in 1831, and settled on Big Creek. He died in Monroe Township at the residence of his daughter, Mrs. WITCHER, February 25, 1875.

Eugene N. BONFILS was born in Tuscaloosa, Ala., October 13, 1820; moved to St. Louis, July, 1841; to Lexington, Ky., in 1846; graduated at Transylvania University, July, 1849; came the following month to St. Louis County, where he taught school; came to Troy in May, 1852, and commenced the practice of law. Besides offices named above, was probate clerk for four years preceding his election as judge, and held other positions of trust.

James H. BITTON was born in Page County, Va., July 11, 1817. His early training was in the mercantile business. He married in 1838, came to Troy in 1840, and commenced business. Besides the offices named, he was for a time postmaster of Troy; in 1848 he was secretary of the State Senate, and during the session of 1856-57 was chief clerk of the House of Representatives. In 1857, he was appointed cashier of the Southern Bank of St. Louis, and moved to that city; in 1864 he was elected its president. He held several other positions of trust, among them the office of president of the Life Association of America, and that of treasurer of the Illinois & St. Louis Bridge Company.

Warner Edward BROWN was born in Union County, Ark., February 6, 1847; came to Wentzville in 1856; served in the Confederate Army the latter part of the war. He graduated in medicine at Washington University, Baltimore, February 22, 1870, and located at Chain of Rocks. He abandoned the practice of medicine years ago and engaged in farming. He was commissioner of the Chain of Rocks bridge, and principal originator of the project.

Francis C. CAKE was born in Deerfield, Cumerland County, N.J., November 9, 1820, came to Troy October 16, 1840 and engaged in mercantile business until 1849. April 12 of that year he started to California by way of the plains, prospected from Nelson Creek in the northern mines of Sonora in the southern; was in Sacramento before there was a frame house erected in the city. He returned to Troy by way of Panama and New York. In 1857 he was appointed on the staff of Gov. Robert M. Stewart with the rank of colonel. He is now deceased.

Elijah COLLARD, one of the early pioneers, came from Kentucky. He was a ranger in the War of 1812. He went to Texas many years ago.

Enoch EMERSON was a native of Maryland. He was a merchant, and went to California in 1849 or 1850.

Andrew R. FINLEY came from Kentucky, and from here he went to California about the year 1870.

James FINLEY also came from Kentucky, and died years ago in this county.

Richard GLADNEY was a native of South Carolina, and came to this county with his parents when quite young. He went to California in 1870, and shortly afterward died.

George Webb HUSTON was born April 18, 1810, in New Market, Shenandoah County, Va. He came to Troy in 1834, was elected State registrar of lands in 1856, and held the office four years. He died in April, 1862.

Thomas G. HUTT was born in Westmoreland County, Va., May 21, 1817, came to this county in 1837, and has ever since resided here.

Thomas W. HUTT was born in Westmoreland County, Va., September, 1798 and came to this county in the fall of 1832.

John R. KNOX was born in this county September 16, 1836, was admitted to the practice of law in 1859. He traveled for his health about three years prior to his death, which occurred in Austin, Tex., May 3, 1876.

Charles William MARTIN was born in Campbell County, Va., September 29, 1810. He came to this county in 1838. He died at his home near Troy, July 14, 1888, in his seventy-eighth year.

Nixon PALMER came from Garrard County, Ky. He died in 1845.

Francis PARKER was born in Windsor, Vt., April 27, 1797. His grandfather, William PARKER, came from the county of Londonderry, Ireland, about the year 1750, settled at Londonderry, N.H., and served throughout the entire war of the Revolution. His maternal grandfather, Tyler SPAFFORD, of English descent, also served throughout the war. His father, Henry PARKER, died in 1814; and in 1817 he came to Jonesboro, Union County, Ill., where he held several important county offices, and where he married, in 1819, Miss Catharine CLAPP, by whom he had eight children. He came to this county in 1821, and married his second wife, Miss Sarah COCHRAN, of this county in 1833. By reference to the list of county officers, it will be seen that he was county clerk for thirty-two years and circuit clerk for twenty-six years. He died September 4, 1868. He was greatly esteemed as an honest, industrious and capable officer, and a sincere and earnest Christian.

John PARKINSON was a native of England. He left this county many years ago, and died at Galena, Ill.

Edward J. PEERS came from Kentucky; he was a graduate of West Point and a major of militia. He died in Troy, September 9, 1862.

Valentine J. PEERS was a brother of the preceding; he married a daughter of Maj. Christopher CLARK, and died some years ago in St. Louis.

J. J. PRITCHETT was a native of Pennsylvania; he left this county about 1856 or 1857.

Alexander REID came from Kentucky; he died at Jefferson City while in office, as stated elsewhere.

James REID was a native of Kentucky, and long a resident of this county, where he was widely known and greatly respected; he died in 1870.

Jonathan RIGGS was a native of Campbell County, Ky., and the son of Rev. Bethuel RIGGS, the first Baptist preacher of this county. He came to this county in 1812, and made an honorable record during the war. He married Miss Jane SHAW, by whom he had eleven children. After the war, he settled north of the Cuivre, on the Troy and Auburn road, where he died in 1834. He was a brigadier-general of militia.

James David SHELTON was born in Pittsylvania County, Va., June 11, 1816; came to this county in November, 1829.

Philip SITTON was born in North Carolina about the year 1772 and came with his father, Joseph SITTON, and several of his brothers, to this county in 1818. He was very prominent in public affairs, and died in this county in 1862 or 1863.

Jehu L. SITTON, a brother of the preceding, came to this county at the same time. He died about 1868, in Pike County, Ill.

William SITTON, a brother of the preceding, was born April 26, 1778. He was a captain in the army during the War of 1812, and was at the battle of New Orleans. He died in 1865. The last vote he cast was for John C. BRECKINRIDGE, for president.

Joseph Winston SITTON, son of the preceding, was born in 1806, in Tennessee.

Hans SMITH was a native of Pennsylvania, and came to this county in the summer of 1828, just two years before he was elected to the Legislature. He was a brilliant orator and a very popular man. He went to Arkansas in 1846 or 1847 and was shortly afterward elected to the State Senate. He finally went to Texas, engaged in mercantile business in Austin, and was drugged, robbed and murdered.

John SNETHEN was born in Estill County, Ky., and came with his father to Montgomery County in 1808. During the War of 1812, he was in the forts in Howard County, and went to school with Kit CARSON. He married Miss Euphemia WELLS, sister of Judge Carty WELLS, by whom he had six children. He was a merchant of Troy for thirty-seven years.

David STEWART was born in Montgomery County, Ky., January 24, 1798; came to this State and settled near Palmyra in 1829, and came to this county the following year. He was a brigadier-general of the militia. He and his wife were both killed by a runaway horse attached to a buggy, while on their way to church at Louisville, on Sunday, June 11, 1871. He was a prosperous farmer, and enjoyed, to the day of his death, the confidence and esteem of all who knew him; he was a sincere Christian gentleman.

Robert STEWART came from North Carolina, and was an early settler; he accumulated considerable property and died in this county.

Henry WATTS was born in Kentucky, and at an early age came to this county. He was colonel of militia, and was under marching orders with his regiment in Gen. Johathan RIGGS’ brigade for the Black Hawk War, in 1832. He died in 1840.

Charles WHEELER was born in Hanover County, N.H., April 1, 1794; moved to New Castle, Henry Co., Ky., in 1820; had charge of New Castle Academy nine months; went next year to Bedford County, and taught school. He came to Alexandria, in this county in 1825; went to Jefferson County, Ky., in 1828, taught school one year and returned in 1829 to Troy, where he lived until his death, January 21, 1873. He was brother of Capt. Otis WHEELER. He held the office of justice of the peace from July 31, 1829, to within a week of his death, when he resigned it—a period of forty-four years. He was a graduate of Dartmouth College, both in law and literature, in the class of 1818.

John WILSON was born in Muirkirk, Prince George’s Co., Md., and came with his parents to this county about 1856. He served in the Confederate army during the late war, and lost an arm in battle. He was a brother of Maj. James WILSON of the Federal Army, who was killed at Pilot Knob. He died in June, 1877 of consumption.

Richard WOMMACK was born in Halifax County, Va., January 10, 1804, and departed this life at his residence in Lincoln County, March 25, 1880. He moved with his parents to Tennessee, where his father died, and from there moved with his mother to this county in October, 1823. He was married three times; first to Miss Cynthia SMILEY; in 1831 to Mrs. Harriet GILMORE, and in 1873 to Mrs. Mary MORRIS; had 10 children. He held prominent positions in public affairs; was a liberal and public-spirited citizen, and lived an exemplary life. He held the office of assessor two terms, that of sheriff four terms, and that of representative in the Legislature four terms. Of him it can truthfully be said to all the world, with all that the language can imply, "This was a man."

William Anderson WOODSON was born in Monroe Township in this county. For years he followed merchandising in Troy, where he now resides.

Richard Henry WOOLFOLK was born in Jefferson County, Ky., in October, 1803; studied medicine in his native state, and came to Troy in 1825; established and maintained a good practice in this and St. Charles Counties for about twenty-five years. In May, 1828, he married Miss Helen B. WELLS, sister of Judge Carty WELLS. He died in this county.

Morgan WRIGHT was born in Bourbon County, Ky., and came at an early day to this county; he was brother to the late Edward Thomas J. WRIGHT; he married a daughter of Judge James DUNCAN, of this county, and died at his home in Clark Township about the year 1852.

File submitted for USGenWeb/MOGenWeb Lincoln County Missouri History Page by Betty Lavy Krieg, 1 December 2001.  Link change or update: 26 Jan 2002

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