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

C. L. RHODES. Life is pleasant to live when we know how to make the most of it. Some people start on their careers as if they had weights on their souls, or were afraid to make the necessary effort to live up to a high standard. Others, by not making a proper study of the conditions of existence, or by not having the best of trainers--good parents--are side-tracked at the outset and never seem thereafter to be able to get back again on the main track. C. L. Rhodes, well-known produce man of Springfield, seems to have been fortunate in being reared under the superb influences of a good old Southern home and, having gotten a proper start on the highway of life, has succeeded admirably.

Mr. Rhodes was born in the northern part of Georgia, April 19, 1853. He is a son of Wesley and Nancy (Stewart) Rhodes, both natives of North Carolina, in which state they grew to maturity, received limited educations and were married, removing in an early day across South Carolina into northern Georgia where they established the future home of the family on a farm which they purchased, and there they spent the rest of their lives, the mother dying in 1881 and the father in 1891. During the war between the states Wesley Rhodes enlisted in the Confederate army under Captain Stewart, in Tennessee, but served only six months. His family consisted of seven children, namely: C. L. of this sketch is the eldest; John is engaged in farming in Georgia; Mrs. Sarah Freeman and husband live on a farm in Lawrence county, Missouri; Nancy has remained single and lives in Alabama; William N. lives in Billings, Christian county, Missouri; James and Emanuel are both deceased.

C. L. Rhodes grew to manhood on the home farm in Georgia and he received his early education in the public schools of his home district. He spent his early life in general farming and also operated a country store for awhile or until he removed to Christian county, Missouri, in 1886. There he engaged in farming four years, then moved to the town of Billings where he engaged in the produce and mercantile business, general trading, etc. Continuing there two years he returned to the farm for awhile, and in 1891 moved to Springfield and at once opened up a produce business which he has conducted with every growing success to the present time, or for a period of twenty-three years, during which he has become one of the most widely known dealers in produce in southwestern Missouri. However, he has had other business interests the meantime. His place of business has remained in the same block on South Campbell street ever since coming to this city and he is widely known to the rural visitors from Christian, Taney and other counties who come to Springfield to trade. He buys and ships all kinds of produce in carload lots, doing mostly a jobbing business, handling chickens, turkeys, ducks, geese, eggs, furs, hides, roots, etc.

Mr. Rhodes was married in August, 1874, at Blairsville, Georgia, to Sarah Bishop, who was born in Georgia in 1858, and there she grew to womanhood and was educated in the common schools. She was a daughter of Alfred and Mary (England) Bishop an old Georgian family, Mr. Bishop having been a successful planter in that state many years. Mr. Rhodes' first wife died on August 2, 1911. To this first union twelve children were born, namely: Mary is deceased.; Bettie is deceased; William S. lives in Springfield, and is engaged in business with his father; Mrs. Ida Bowman lives in this city; James and John, twins, both live in Springfield; Lou and Gertrude, twins, are both deceased; Hershel and Ernest, twins, the former deceased, the latter living in this city; Minnie, died in early life; Jessie also died when young.

On September 12, 1912, C. L. Rhodes married Frances Little, in Aurora, Missouri; she was born in the same vicinity in northern Georgia of which our subject was a native, but was brought to Christian county, Missouri, when young by her parents and there grew to womanhood and attended school. She is a daughter of William and Louise Jane (Cobb) Little. Her mother was born in North Carolina, February 14, 1837, and her death occurred in Billings, Missouri, in 1908. The father of Mrs. Rhodes was born December 31, 1836, in North Carolina and his death occurred at Billings, Missouri, June 26, 1892.

Mr. Rhodes has been very successful in a business way and owns considerable valuable property in Springfield, including a substantial modern residence on Phillips street. Politically, he is a Republican. Fraternally, he belongs to the Woodmen of the World and the Modern Woodmen of America. He and his family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church, South, in which he is a trustee and a liberal supporter.


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