A Directory of Towns, Villages, and Hamlets
Past and Present
of Holt County, Missouri
Compiled by Arthur Paul Moser
Anselment's Mill, in the northeast quarter of Section 17, Township 60, Range 37, Nodaway Township, stood at the confluence of a small tributary with Nickol's Creek, which here flows north into Hickory Township. It was near the center of the north boundary line of the quarter section, which was owned by Joseph Anselment...(--History of Holt & Atchison Counties, p. 441.)
See Durbin's Station.
Bigelow (Bigelow Township, elevation 860 feet)
Bigelow...is located on the K. C. ST. J. & C. B. R. R., in the center of Section 10, Township 61, Range 39, thirty-eight miles from St. Joseph and one hundred and six miles from Kansas City. The town of Bigelow took its start in November, 1868, at which period Capt. H. L. Williams opened in the place the first store in the limits of the township...
Dr. J. P. Jackson opened in 1870 the first store in Bigelow. In 1875 Holt Bros. started a drug store...The first blacksmith was C. H. Graves, who settled there and opened his shop in 1869...The first postmaster was H. C. Haines, appointed in 1869...(--History of Holt & Atchison Counties, p. 195, 196.)
It is situated at Sec. 10, Twp. 61 N, R. 39 W, at the junction of 118 & P. (--General Highway Map of Holt County, issued by The Missouri State Highway Department, 11-1-66. Unless otherwise noted, all map locations are from this map.)
Brown's Curve is situated at Sec. 35, 36, Twp. 62 N, R. 38 W, at the junction of 59 & D.
Mail via Mound City; no population shown. (--Standard Ref. Guide of Mo., 1974, Rand, McNally.)
Campbell Corner was situated at Sec. 5, Twp. 61 N, R. 37 W, and Sec. 32, 33, Twp. 62 N, same range at the junction of B and 113.
It is no longer listed.
Clay Center (Liberty Township)
Clay Center was located in the northeast corner of Liberty Township. (--Map of Missouri, 1925, Rand, McNally.)
It is no longer listed.
Corning (elevation 875 feet)
This town is the most nothern of Holt County, and lies less than one mile south of the line of Atchison County, was laid out in the fall of 1868. Its original site occupies the northwest quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 30, Township 63, Range 40...
The first to sell goods in the town was Conrad Grab (see Hemme's Landing), who had been driven from the bank of the Missouri, by the encroachments of that stream. This was in 1868. Shortly after Sanders Bros. opened a stock of goods in the place. The first blacksmith was William Bertram. Ferris & Drake, in the same year, started the first lumberyard...The first postmaster was Conrad Grab, who was appointed in 1868... (--History of Holt & Atchison Counties, pp. 287, 288.)
It is situated at Sec. 19 & 30, Twp. 63 N, R. 40 W, at the junction of W & 111.
It is a rural branch of Craig post-office. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
Craig (Union Township, elevation 870 feet)
It occupies the southeast corner of Section 11, and the northeast corner of Section 14, in Township 62, Range 40, on the main line of the Kansas City, St. Joseph & Council Bluffs R. R., which was completed to this point in the summer of 1868...
The town of Craig was laid out early in the fall of 1868, by the original proprietors Robert W. Frame, Christ Shults, and Samuel Ensworth. Its 1882 population was between 600 and 700.
The first to sell goods in the place was A. W. Hawley. He began in the fall of 1868. Immediately after, Shults & Frame, who were selling goods and keeping a post-office called Tarkio, in a house one and three quarter miles northeast of the site of the town, moved their stock of goods to the new town and commenced business. This Tarkio was nearly a mile below the noted watering place, one half mile east of Craig and is still (1882) known as Big Spring. It is at the foot of the bluff, and was a regular halting place over the route from St. Joseph over the hills via Savannah, Fillmore and Hollister's Mill to North Point, afterwards Mound City...The trading point of Tarkio remained at this point, on the Little Tarkio, till the growing importance of the new town of Craig absorbed its business...
The first blacksmith to open a shop in Craig, was J. A. Orange, who, in September, 1868, erected the first building in the town and opened it as the Grant & Sherman House. He sold it in 1873...The first postmaster was Christian Shults...in April, 1881, the town of Craig was chartered as a city of the fourth class...(--History of Holt County, pp. 453, 454, 458.)
It is situated at the junction of 59 & 111.
It was on the C. B. & Q. R. R., northwest of Forbes. (--Map of Missouri, 1917, Rand, McNally.)
It was situated at Sec. 15, Twp. 59 N, R. 38 W on T.
It is no longer listed.
Dallas (Forbes Township)
The first attempt to start a town within the limits of what is now Forbes Township, occurred April 17, 1843, when Abraham Brown laid out the town of Dallas, on the northeast quarter of Section 28, Township 59, Range 37, one mile above the mouth of the Nodaway River. This never in its best days amounted to much of a town... A hemp press and several large warehouses for years stood on the site of this prospective town...The only attempt to sell goods in the place was made by James Whitehead, who kept a small store at the landing for about a year... (--History of Holt County, p. 245.)
Dallas not longer listed in Holt County. Dallas in Jackson County is a part of Kansas City. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
Durbin's Station (Union Township)
This was a station on the Stage line, and as early as 1841, a man by the name of Daniel Durbin...kept a store there.
It was located in the southeast quarter of Section 34, Township 63, Range 40, on the road leading from Ellington's Ferry to Council Bluffs...Mr. Durbin also kept a ferry there across the Tarkio before the bridge was built...This ferry was also known as Army Ford. (--History of Holt County, p. 452.)
It is no longer listed.
Ellington's Ferry (Nodaway Township)
Ellington's Ferry, one of the oldest crossings of the Nodaway River, was established as early as 1841, near the northeast corner of Section 11, Township 60, Range 37. On the establishment of Hollister's Mill (q.v.) about a half mile lower down, it was moved to that point. This was about 1843...(--History of Holt County, p. 440.)
Finley (later Oregon, elevation 1094 feet)
June 23, 1841, the commission appointed to select a permanent county seat of Holt County selected the following quarter section of land, lying in Range 38, Township 60 and the east half of the southeast quarter of Section 27, and the west half of the southwest quarter of Section 27, which seat of justice is to be known and called "Finley"...(--History of Holt County, p. 105.)
Forbes (Foster Township, elevation 858 feet)
Forbes was laid out in 1869, by Levi Devorss on the southwest quarter of the northwest quarter of Section 29, Township 59, Range 37...As early as 1839, Jonathan Keney pre-empted the quarter on which the town stands...The idea of locating a town at this point was prompted by the presence of the Kansas City, St. Joseph & Council Bluffs R. R., which was completed to this point in the summer of 1868...The depot at this point is nineteen miles north by west of St. Joseph, and the elevation of its site is eight hundred and sixty-seven and nearly one-half feet above sea level. The original house of the town was the farm residence of Levi Dorss, at the foot of the bluff at the north extremity of the village.
The first building erected after the laying out of the town was a small store erected by Wm. Herron...In 1876, Shirley & Taylor put up the first steam flouring mill ever built in the township...E. B. Bumps, in 1870, opened the first drug store in Forbes...
The first postmaster of Forbes, or as the office (is) (sic) styled, Elm Grove, was Levi Dorss, the father of the town. He was appointed August 28, 1868... (--History of Holt County, pp. 246, 247.)
It is situated at Sec. 29, Twp. 59 N, R. 37 W at the junction of T & O.
Forest City (elevation 858 feet)
Forest City was laid out ca. May 15, 1857, on Sections 28, 30, 31, 32, Township 60, Range 38, and occupied a surface of 877 feet above sea level. As early as 1857 Nave & Turner & Co., started a grocery store...
The first store building in the place was put up by Tootles, Fairleigh & Co...The first postmaster was appointed in 1857. He was Daniel Zook...The first blacksmith in Forest City was John W. Moody, formerly of Independence, Mo. He removed from Oregon, Mo., to Forest City, where he opened his shop in the summer of 1857.
Forest City, from the period of its foundation till the summer of 1868, when the Missouri River suddenly turned westward and left the town two and a half miles inland, was a shipping point and it early became the port from which all kinds of produce was shipped...(--History of Holt County, pp. 346, 347.)
It is situated at Secs. 29, 30, 31 & 32, Twp. 60 N, R. 38 W at the junction of 111 & T.
Fortescue (elevation 865 feet)
It is east of the Missouri River, on the C. B. & Q. R. R. line to Rulo, Nebraska. (--Map of Mo., 1917, Rand, McNally.)
It is situated at Secs. 32 & 33, Twp. 61 N, R. 39 W at the junction of 159 & P.
Mail via Forest City. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
See New Point.
See, also, Grant in St. Louis Co.; Grant City, Worth Co. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
Helwig was east of Oregon, in Nodaway Township. (--Map of Missouri, 1925, Rand, McNally.)
The post-office was discontinued in 1905. (--General Scheme, 1905, Taft, p. 45; for the use of Railway Mail Clerks.)
Helwig is no longer listed.
Hemme's Landing (Lincoln Township)
Hemmes Landing is the first attempt to start a town in this part of the county. It was inaugurated by Henry Hemme, another Hanoverian, who settled in the county in 1844. This settlement, which was known as Hemme's Landing, was about two miles west of the present (1882) site of Corning. This site is now (1882) within the limits of the State of Nebraska, and the Missouri River flows within three-fourths of a mile of Corning, and considerably to the eastward of the spot where the old town stood. Hemme's Landing was one of the most important trading points between St. Joseph and Council Bluffs. The first merchant who sold goods at the landing was David Greer, who commenced business there in 1845.
(Several transactions later, Conrad Grab became by purchase the owner of the store--in 1864 or 1865.) By this time the encroachments of the river threatened the entire destruction and obliteration of the place. Most of the inhabitants left, taking with them their buildings...Grab, however...hung on till almost the last moment, and finally, in the fall of 1868, moved eastward to the site of what is now the town of Corning. (--History of Holt County, p. 287.)
Hemme's Landing is no longer listed.
Hollister's Mill (Nodaway Township)
One of the oldest flouring mills was located within the present limits of Nodaway Township. This was known as Hollister's Mill. It was built on Section 17, Township 60, Range 37. A. G. Hollister, who owned the mill, was a member of the State Legislature from 1862 to 1866. (--History of Holt County, p. 440.)
See Jeffrey's Point.
Jackson's Point (Benton Township)
In 1840, a man by the name of Thomas Ferguson settled at the mouth of the south fork of Davis Creek...on the northeast quarter of Section 6, Township 61, Range 30. He built at the foot of the bluff at this point a double log cabin, in which he entertained the traveling public. Ferguson had purchased the claim from a man by the name of Davis, after whom Davis Creek was named. About 1844 or 1845, Ferguson sold the place to Andrew F. Jackson. This was, for many years after, called Jackson's Point, and was at one time, one of the widest known localities of the Platte Purchase...
The first post-office established in what is now Benton Township was located here and was called Jackson's Point Post Office. This was in a very early day (about 1844). A. P. Jackson was the first postmster. In 1855, this post-office was moved across Davis Creek to the single store which then stood on the site of what is now Mound City. This was kept by a man by the name of Galen Crow, and the name of the post-office was changed to North Point... (--History of Holt County, pp. 129, 130.)
Jeffrey's Point (also known as Iowa Point)
This was on a quarter section of land, on which a mulatto, by the name of Jeffrey Dorway, had squatted. William Banks and John E. McIntosh purchased the pre-emption from the squatter...Mr. Banks spoke of the mulatto as a person of unusual intelligence; he spoke fluently English, French and five Indian languages...It appears that "Dorway" was a corruption of his original name, Dorwine. The spot where Banks settled was called from this Jeffrey's Point. It was a projection included in the southwest quarter of Section 15, Township 59, Range 30.
Banks & McIntosh, on taking possession of the claim, called it Iowa Point. Here they proceeded to erect their store house of hewed logs, thirty-six by twenty feet...and proceeded to stock it with goods they had brought with them...Theirs was the second mercantile business started in the county...
In 1844 Mr. Banks started a ferry business at Iowa Point...This was the only ferry on the Missouri River above Roubidoux Landing, (St. Joseph).
Nearly all if not all the original tract, including Iowa Point, has been engulfed in the waters of the Missouri...
By permission of Mr. Banks, the point in Kansas, opposite the original Iowa Point, Missouri, was so named by John Pemberton and Harvey Foreman. (--History of Holt County, pp. 312, 313.)
Jones' Point was in West Lewis Township on the Missouri River. (--New Atlas of Missouri, 1874, Map 16.)
It is no longer listed.
King's Grove (not a town)
King's Grove, northwest of Whig Valley, was so called from its first occupant, John B. King. (--Campbell, p. 235.)
Konoko was a post-office in King's Grove, fourteen miles east, northeast of Craig. (--Campbell, p. 235.)
It is no longer listed.
Lewisville (Union Township)
The earliest attempt to start a town in the present limits of Union Township, was inaugurated by the Lewises. Lewisville was laid out on Section 19, Township 62, Range 40, by Joseph G. and Elizabeth Lewis, March 6, 1850. The site of this town has long since crumbled into the Missouri River. (--History of Holt County, pp. 451, 452.)
Lowell was in the northwest corner of Lincoln Township, on the Missouri River, west of Corning. (--New Atlas of Missouri, Map 16.)
It is no longer listed.
Maitland (elevation 900 feet)
On the 12th day of May, 1880, the plat of the town of Maitland, in Clay Township was filed in the Recorder's office of Holt County, by J. F. Bernard, of St. Joseph, Missouri, who was the owner of the land on which the town was located. The original town site occupies the south half of the southeast quarter of Section 4, and the west half of the northeast quarter of Section 9, Township 62, Range 37.
The pioneer building of the town was put up in June, 1880, by J. M. Wensch & Co., of St. Joseph, Missouri, for a lumberyard. The second house was moved from Whig Valley (q.v.), by E. F. Weller...for a store. Mr. Weller was the first postmaster. The first business house erected in the town was the hardware store of C. D. Messenger, who was from St. Joseph... (--History of Holt County, pp. 206, 207.)
It is in the northeast corner of the county at the junction of 43, A & C.
Marietta was laid out in 1854 on Section 20, Township 62, Range 40, by Barlow Lewis. The site of the village has long since been crumbled into the Missouri River. (--History of Holt County, p. 452.)
Minton was on the Missouri River north of Forest City. (--Map of Missouri, 1925, Rand, McNally.)
It is no longer listed.
Mound City (elevation 875 feet)
As early as 1852 there stood on the east boundary of the present town of Mound City, a log cabin in which was run a blacksmith shop by E. Porter Forbes. This was the first house to stand on the site of the town, which was laid out four years later...
The town of Mound City is located in the southern part of Section 31, Township 62, Range 38 and in the northern part of Section 6, Township 61, Range 38, on the waters of Davis Creek...
In 1855 Galen Crow put up a building in which he opened a stock of goods...Crow, who had purchased Jackson Point (q.v.), then moved the post-office across the creek to his recently established store and called the post-office North Point. The post-office continued to be so called until April 1, 1872, when the name was changed to Mound City...
The first residence erected on the town site after it was laid out, was a small frame building on State Street...this was in 1857...In the same fall, Absolum Hoover was induced to erect, in the east part of the townsite, a steam saw mill. This was the first mill put up within the limits of Benton Township...
At the period of the breaking out of the Civil War the place did not contain above a dozen houses, and there seemed little prospect of its ever becoming what it is today (1882), the commercial as well as geographical center of Holt County...(--History of Holt County, pp. 131, 132, 133.)
It is situated at Section 31, Township 62, Range 38, and Section 6, Township 61, same range at the junction of 118, 59 & T.
Napier was located at the junction of the C. B. & Q. R. R. with the branch line to Rulo, Nebraska. (--Map of Missouri, 1917, Rand, McNally.)
The town is located near the west side of the northwest quarter of Section 33, Township 61, Range 37. A portion of the village lies in the east part of the northwest quarter of the same, the half section passing along the center of the principal street. The south limits of the village extend to the waters of Nichol's Creek...The town was first started by L. D. Barnes, the founder of the town, and the pioneer merchant of the place who commenced selling goods there in a building which he had erected for that purpose in 1869. In 1875, in consequence of another of the same name having been previously established, the name of the town and post-office, which had been called Grant was changed, and the present style, New Point, was substituted therefore. About the same period, Jerry Stulz started a blacksmith shop, the first in the town...
In 1871, B. F. Wilson...established the first...drug store in the town...In 1874, John P. Ruhl started a millinery establishment in the place. During the following year, he added, in an adjoining room, a stock of general merchandise...(--History of Holt County, pp. 265, 266.)
It is situated in the eastern part of the county, at the junction of B & 120, near Andrew County line.
Nickol's Grove (a settlement, Hickory Township)
Nickol's Grove, in the immediate vicinity of the village of North Point, lies along the water of Nickol's Creek...
Robert Nickols...induced his brothers Frank and John, his mother and brother-in-law J. Kelley, to move in and settle in this section of the county...Others moved in from time to time...The first school house built in the limits of Hickory Township...was erected in the year 1846. It stood on the southeast quarter of Section 29, Township 61, Range 37...
Later a physician, Dr. Dozier, located in the Grove in about 1845.
The first mill in Hickory Township was a small concern built by John Blair, for Robert Nickols about the year 1838 or 1839, and stood on the northwest quarter of Section 34, Township 61, Range 37, about one-half mile east of the site of the present village of New Point... (--History of Holt County, pp. 262, 263, 264.)
Oregon (elevation 1094 feet)
We have seen in a former chapter that Finley (now Oregon), the county seat of Holt County, was laid out the 21st day of June, 1841, by John A. Williams, Edward Smith and Travis Finley, the commissioners who were appointed for that purpose by the legislature.
On October 22, 1841, the original name of the county seat, Finley, was changed, and it was "ordered that the county seat of Holt County be called and known by the name of Oregon, and known by the name of Oregon, and which name is hereby given to said county seat."
In the fall of 1841, David Zook, Sr., emigrated from Ohio, and settled in Holt County, in the neighborhood of what was afterward the town of Oregon...
He brought with him a small stock of merchandise, and although not regularly engaged in the business, is said to have sold a few goods that fall...
Daniel Zook, Sr., and his son, William, built in Oregon, the first house in the place...
Edward Poor, in partnership with a man by the name of Ross, started in the fall of 1842, the first blacksmith shop in the place...The first physician to settle in the town was Dr. J. C. Norman...
In 1873, a new public school building was erected. A tower ninety-six feet in height was erected above the main front of the edifice. From the belfry in this tower a wide view was afforded. Highland, White Cloud, Iowa Point, Troy and other towns in Kansas, as well as Rulo, Nebraska, were distinctly visible... (--History of Holt County, pp. 320, 322, 323, 325, 338.)
Letter to the pastor at the Christian Church and the reply:
"According to Encyclopedia of the History of Missouri, 1901, Conard, Vol. 5, p. 280, your church has, hanging in the steeple, the bell from the steam-boat 'Watosa', which was sunk in the Nodaway River, in 1865. Do you know if that bell still hangs in the steeple?"
" 'The church bell now in use at the Christian Church is the same bell used at the old brick church built by the Baptists in Oregon. It was salvaged from the steamboat 'Wautossa' which sank and was abandoned near the mouth of the Nodaway River, prior to 1858.'
The above from the History of the Christian Church in Oregon. There is no inscription or date on the bell. It rings every Lord's Day morning to call the church to worship.
(Signed) Millie Walkup
Mrs. Wm. C. Walkup
100 Barbour Street
Oregon, Missouri 64473"
Oregon is situated at the junction of 59 & 111 west of I-29. (--Map of Missouri, 1974, Rand, McNally.)
Its site extends from the southwest corner of the northwest quarter to the northwest corner of the southwest quarter of Section 27, Township 60, Range 37. It was laid out in 1860, by Thomas Templeton, a son of the pioneer. A son-in-law of Templeton, a man by the name of Gregg, was the first to sell goods in the place...
In its best days, Richville contained but five families, and it never enjoyed the convenience of a post-office. (--History of Holt County, p. 441.)
The area is east of T and north of 59. No population.
Mail via Oregon; Richville is in Douglas County. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
Ross' Grove (not a town)
Ross' Grove, five miles north of Mound City, was settled by Robert K. Ross, the pioneer of that part of the county. (--Campbell, p. 235.)
Rush Bottom was south and east of Marietta. (--New Atlas of Missouri, 1874, Campbell, Map 16.)
It is no longer listed.
Rush Bottom Landing
Rush Bottom Landing was in the southwest corner of Bigelow Township, across the Missouri River from Rulo, Nebraska. There was a ferry at this point. (--New Atlas of Missouri, 1874, Campbell, Map 16.)
It is no longer listed.
Sharpe's Grove (not a town)
Sharpe's Grove, commencing two and one-half miles east from Corning, extending eastward about four miles northeast to the county line and south to the vicinity of Craig, was named for the brothers Sharpe... (--Campbell, p. 235.)
There is a Tarkio in Atchison County. (--Rand, McNally, 1974.)
Thorpe's Mill (Lewis Township)
The first post-office established in Holt County was located in Lewis Township. Judge R. H. Russell was the first postmaster appointed. This was in 1839. He kept the office which was known by the name and style of "Thorpe's Mill", in a hewed log house, which he had erected on his farm in Section 12...Russell was also the contractor for carrying the mail to Savannah, in Andrew County. This he did once a week. The mail bag was never weighty. Four letters were considered a heavy mail; newspapers were unheard of. Postage in those days was twenty-five cents a letter. The post-office continued to be maintained here until the town of Oregon was started in 1842, when Judge Russell appointed William Zook, Sr., who had just opened the first store in that town as his deputy, and without any other warrant or authority, the office was moved to Oregon. (--History of Holt County, p. 311.)
It is no longer listed.
Toole's (or Barkhurst Ferry)
The rapids of the Nodaway River, extend across, from the southwest quarter of Section 24, Range 31. Toole's, or Barkhurst's Ferry was located here...This was the first ferry established, by law, in Holt County, and license to keep it was granted to Richard M. Barkhurst, by the county court at its first session, March 24, 1841. (--History of Holt County, p. 441.)
West Union (Forbes Township)
On the 12th day of April, 1844, Henry Utt, and E. M. Samsel laid out the town. Its location was between Dallas and the mouth of the Nodaway River. Corner lots could not be given away, and while the friends of the would-be founders gloried in the enterprise of these...rivals of Dallas...they almost universally condemned their judgment. West Union fell still born, and few now (1882) living in or out of the county have any recollection of the prospective existence of such a place. (--History of Holt County, pp. 245, 246.)
Whig Valley was the name of the post-office and a town was laid out in the fall of 1876, and a store was built (sic). The first store in Whig Valley was established in 1870 (sic) by E. A. Burnett & Bro., and stood on Section 9, of Township 62, Range 37. This was purchased by E. F. Wells, who, in 1876 built the present (1882) store on the town site of Whig Valley. Whig Valley was abandoned when Maitland was laid out, its business houses and their proprietors all moving to the new town. (--History of Holt County, p. 206.)
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