Jonathan Fairbanks and Clyde Edwin Tuck

Past and Present of Greene County, Missouri

Early and Recent History and Genealogical Records
of Many of the Representative Citizens


JOHN BAKER GLASS. For a period of nearly forty years the late John Baker Glass was regarded by his wide acquaintance as one of the representative citizens of Greene county. He was a man, whom to know was to admire and respect, for he was the possessor of that peculiar combination of attributes which results in the attainment of much that is worth while in this world. He aimed to be progressive in what he did, was always in sympathy with enterprises having for their object the common good, and his influence was invariably exerted on the right side of every moral issue. Like all men of positive ideas he sought to know the truth at all times and to apply it in his every day affairs, and thus he was spoken of as one who "stood four-square to every wind that blew."

Mr. Glass was born in Stark county Ohio, March 6, 1845. He was a son of John and Sarah (Baker) Glass, the father dying on March 3, 1845, just three days before our subject was born. (See sketch of Albert M. Glass.) To these parents one other son was born, Albert Glass, who is now living near Bois D' Arc, Greene county, Missouri. The father was a native of Ohio, where he grew to manhood, established his home in Stark county, where he engaged in farming, and operated a large saw mill also.

John B. Glass spent his boyhood in his native state and attended the common schools. He served during the latter part of the Civil war, enlisting in 1865 in Company G, One Hundred and Sixty-second Ohio Volunteer Infantry. He was in the service about four months and did guard duty mostly in Covington, Kentucky, and other points. After the war he returned to Stark county and attended Mt. Union College for two years, receiving an excellent education. He then began his career as teacher, which he followed successfully until in May, 1870, when he came to Springfield, Missouri, and here engaged in the grist and saw mill business, under the firm name of Glass & Creighton. Later Mr. Creighton sold his interest to a Mr. Mishler and the firm name was changed to Mishler & Glass. The business was continued for many years by our subject, who met with continuous success and accumulated a competency and considerable valuable property. His health failing, he gave up active work and spent some time away from Springfield in an effort to regain his health. Upon his return be lived in retirement, merely looking after his property.

Mr. Glass was married near Springfield on January 20, 1880, to Martha I. Witherspoon, a daughter of William E. and Mary Jane (Watts) Witherspoon. Mr. Witherspoon came to Greene county in 1858 and purchased eighty acres, later bought another eighty adjoining, and here became a successful farmer. He was one of eight children. He was a native of Tennessee and was a small child when his father died. Mrs. Glass was one of ten children, seven of whom are still living, five sons and two daughters, all making their homes in Greene county but one. They are Mrs. Elizabeth Cornell, who lives in Ottawa, Kansas; Martha L., who married Mr. Glass, of this memoir; Mrs. Nancy A. Votaw, Mrs. Mary J. Morris; William J. is farming; Mrs. Margaret S. Stiver; Edward M. is farming; John M., the eldest son, died in 1880; two children died in infancy, unnamed. The father of the above named children died on the old homestead on April 16, 1883. His widow still survives and is making her home with her son, Edward M. Witherspoon, who lives on a farm near Springfield.

The union of Mr. and Mrs. Glass was without issue.

Politically, Mr. Glass was a Republican. He was a member of the Congregational church, in which he was for some time a deacon. He was also superintendent of the Sunday school twice, and was active in church and Sunday school work. He was twice honored by being chosen president of the Greene County Sunday School Association, and was also treasurer of the same. He was one of the most influential and earnest men in this line of work in the county for many years. He was a member of John Matthews Post, Grand Army of the Republic, Springfield. Mrs. Glass belongs to the Ladies' Circle of the Grand Army of the Republic. She is also a member of the Congregational church. She has a pleasant home on North Jefferson street.

Mr. Glass was summoned to his reward in the silent land on December 20, 1909. He was greatly missed from the circles in which he moved, all conceding that a good, broad-minded and useful man had gone.

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