A Directory of Towns, Villages, and Hamlets
Past and Present
of Chariton County, Missouri

Compiled by Arthur Paul Moser



Aholt was located in the southern part of the county near Howard-Saline County line. (--The State of Missouri in 1904, (--Williams, p. 357.)

It was situated on Sec. 35, Twp. 52 N, R. 18 W on an unmarked county road south of WW. (--Gen. Highway Map of Chariton Co., issued by the Missouri State Highway Dept. 11-16-61. Unless otherwise noted all map locations are from this map.)

Brunswick (elevation 650 feet)

Brunswick was established in 1836 by James Keyte, the same man who founded Keytesville...He named it for his home town, Brunswick, England...John Basey was the first hotel keeper...Dr. Edwin Price, brother of Sterling Price, was an early physician. John N. Davis was the first school teacher. He was afterwards county judge and opened his first school in 1840, a subscription school...The M. E. Church was the first church built. The first house in Brunswick was a log house erected by James Keytes. It was a residence and general merchandise store combined. He also owned and operated the first saw mill and was the first postmaster which position he held until his death in 1844... (--(--Gehrig, pp. 238, 239.)

It is situated in Sec. 2 & 3, Twp. 53 N, R. 20 W at the junction of 24 & Y east of 11.

See, also, Wetmore's Gazetteer of the State of MO., 1837, p. 273; Gazetteer of MO., 1874, Campbell, p. 134; Ency. of the Hist. of MO., 1901, Conard, Vol. 1, p. 407.


It is a post-office 16 miles north northeast of Keytesville. (--Campbell, p. 134.)

Bynumville, about 14 miles north of Salisbury, was laid out in 1878, but had an existence many years previous. The town is named for Dr. Joseph Bynum, an early settler. The little town was a splendid inland trading point. It had a bank, and several stores, a Union Church, and a newly erected Holiness tabernacle. (--(--Gehrig, p. 247.)

It is situated in Sec. 35, Twp. 56 N, R. 17 W on 129 south of the junction with P.

It is a rural branch of Salisbury post-office. Population 40. (--Standard Ref. Guide of MO., 1974, Rand McNally.)


Cazzell was in the southwest corner of the county north of Aholt. (--(--Map of MO., 1917, Rand McNally.)


The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (Location unknown.) (--Gen. Scheme of MO., 1905, (--Taft, p. 22; for the use of Railway Mail Clerks.)



The first circuit court that convened in Chariton County met February 26, 1821, in the town of Chariton. It was presided over by Judge David Todd who was commissoioned as Judge of the First Judicial Circuit by A. McNair, first governor of Missouri...The town of Chariton had such an auspicious beginning and roseate looking future that a businessman in St. Louis, Wm. Cabeen by name sold his holdings in the latter city a block near the court house for $3,000 and invested in Chariton. The St. Louis property is worth hundreds of thousands today (1923) while Chariton is a thing of the past.

The first Sunday School west of St. Louis was organized at Chariton, Chariton County, Mo., in the spring of 1820, by Rev. Jno. M. Peck, D. D....In 1825 the fortunes of the town of Chariton began to wane, caused by unhealthful conditions. The river overflowed and malaria came next and brought many deaths. In 1833 the county seat was moved to Keytesville and by 1840 the town was abandoned. Many people left without selling their property and in few instances leaving half-finished houses to rot and fall to the ground.

In 1831 an attempt was made to locate another town in the vicinity of Chariton, Monticello one mile east. Dr. Jno. Graves was the founder and after erecting a business building was engaged on a dwelling when he was drowned getting sand out of the river.

The town never made much growth although it was beautifully and healthfully located. In 1833 the town of Thorntonburg was founded at the mouth of the Chariton by R. B. Thornton. Capt. Thos. Joyce, of Louisville, Kentucky, had a part interest in the land on which the town sat, and after some litigation renamed it Louisville on the Missouri. It soon became a town of the past. (--(--Gehrig, pp. 215, 216; See, also, Conard, Vol. 1, p. 564, 565.)

G. Compton was postmaster in 1837. (--Wetmore, p. 273.)

Chariton is no longer listed in Chariton Co.; there is a Chariton in Putnam Co. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))


Chraneville was south of Guthridge Mills. (--(--Map of MO., 1911, Rand McNally, (--Gehrig, p. 248.)


Collinwood was between Triplett and Cunningham. (--The State of MO., in 1904, Walter (--Williams, p. 357.)


See Sumner.



The first town in Cunningham Township was Cunningham founded by Eziah McLilly in 1870. The first business house erected was a saloon...Cunningham grew to be quite a town, but the coming of the Burlington Railroad and the starting of the new town of Sumner spelled its doom and today--1923--there is little sign of a town left. (--(--Gehrig, p. 232.)

It is 18 miles north of Brunswick and had 1 church, a few business houses and had about 200 inhabitants in 1874. (--Campbell, p. 134.)

It is situated at Sec. 27, Twp. 56 N, R. 21 W on Highway 139 at the junction with E.

Mail via Sumner; population 40. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))

Dalton (elevation 645 feet)

Dalton, at Sec. 13, Twp. 52 N, R. 19 W, on Highway J south of 24, on the St. L. K. C. & N. R. W., four miles west of Keytesville, had several stores...Population about 300 (1874). (--Campbell, p. 134.)

The town of Dalton was founded in 1867. The town site was the home of William Dalton, after whom the village was named, many years before it was laid out. It is located in Bowling Green Township twelve miles west of Salisbury and eight miles east of Brunswick...

Veach & Myers was the first business firm. Other early merchants were Beck, Tisdale, Tocent, Price and Buddenberg. The first postmaster bore the name Beamer.

Many of the first buildings in Dalton were built of lumber taken from a steam boat which sank in the Missouri River not far distant... (--(--Gehrig, pp. 243, 244.)

Dean Lake (Snyder Post-Office)

It is situated in the southwest corner of the county near Carroll at Sec. 2, 3, Twp. 54 N, R. 21 W, on the Santa Fe Railroad.

Dean Lake is the railroad name for Snyder.(--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))


Diledo was located in the northeast corner of Cunningham Township. (--(--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)

Doxey's Fork

Doxey's Fork was named for John Doxey. (--How MO. Counties, Towns and Streams were Named, 2nd Article, p. 274, Eaton.) (Location is unknown.)



Eccles was north of Salisbury and four and three-quarters miles south of Musselfork. (--(--Williams, p. 357.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--(--Taft, p. 22.)


Echo was south of Bynumville. (--(--Williams, p. 357.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--(--Taft, p. 22.)

Elk Spring

Elk Spring was located in Sec. 34, Twp. 56 N, R. 20 W, Cunningham Township. (--New Atlas of MO., Map 18.)

Forest Green

Forest Green, a new town on the Keokuk and Kansas City R. R., 7 miles west of Salisbury, promised to do well. (--Campbell, p. 134.)

Forest Green in Chariton Township was founded in 1873 by John G. Forest. M. Guerin built the first house in 1873 for a general store. Covey Heryford was the first postmaster and F. Weisenhern was the pioneer blacksmith. D. Gochey was the first carpenter, L. P. Nichols was the first school principal. (--(--Gehrig, p. 247.)

It is situated in Sec. 16, Twp. 52 N, R. 17 W in the southeast corner of the county at the junction of 5 & T.

It is a rural branch of Salisbury Post Office. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))


Glee was located in the northeast corner of the county south of Macon County line. (--(--Williams, p. 357.)

It was west of Wien. (--(--Map of MO., 1910, The Kenyon Company, Des Moines.)

Guthridge Mills

Guthridge Mills was a small town founded in Musselfork Township in 1838. At one time it had as many as 17 business houses, but today--1923--it is no more a town. (--(--Gehrig, p. 233.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--(--Taft, p. 22.)


It was on Brush Creek northeast of Keytesville. (--(--Map of MO., 1910, Kenyon Co.)

Hamden (Bee Branch Township)

Hamden is situated at Sec. 35, Twp. 56 N, R. 17 W on Highway 129 north of D.

Mail via Bynumville; no population is shown. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))


Hess was located in Salt Creek Township at Sec. 24, Twp. 54 N, R. 18 W. (--(--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)

Indian Grove

Indian Grove is situated at Sec. 3, 4, 9 & 10, Twp. 54 N, R. 19 W on Highway F south of C.

Mail via Brunswick; population 25. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))

Keytesville (elevation 645 feet)

Keytesville...174 miles from St. Louis...was settled in 1832, and named in honor of John Keytes of England. It contained 2 hotels, 1 first-class flouring-mill, 2 wagon, plow and agricultural implement manufactories, 2 tobacco factories, 1 bank, 2 churches, and a public school... (--Campbell, p. 134.)

Mr. Keyte, the town's founder and for whom the town was named, erected a log cabin in 1831 near Musselfork which was the first building in Keytesville. Soon after this he erected a small business house in the corner of his yard, which was used as a store and post-office and presided over by his siter, Miss Sarah Keet (sic), who sometimes in addition to her other duties carried the mail between Old Chariton and Keytesville. J. W. Redding ranks as the pioneer hotel keeper. Dr. David Pettigrew was the first physician...Peter Lassen, a native of Denmark, was the original blacksmith... (--(--Gehrig, p. 236.)

The town was laid out in 1832 on land donated to the county by James Keyte on condition that the place be made a permanent county seat. The same year the county records and offices were removed from the old town of Chariton...September 20, 1864, a force of Confederate soldiers raided the town and burned the court house and killed the sheriff... (--Ency. of the Hist. of MO., 1901, Conard, Vol. 3, p. 533.)


Keytesville Landing

Keytesville Landing, Bowling Green Township, was never laid out as a town, but was a business point from 1832 to 1864. It was on the Missouri River and served as a landing for goods shipped by river to Keytesville, about six miles distant. This was an excellent steam boat landing until the river began to change its bed and now it is far from the river. There was at one time a tobacco warehouse and a general merchandise store there. In 1869 the landing was entirely abandoned. (--(--Gehrig, pp. 230, 231.)

It was a point of much importance during the early days of steam boating on the Missouri River. The town is now abandoned. For a number of years it was the home of General Sterling Price. The river has changed its course and is about one and a half miles from the original site of the town, which is now covered by a lake. (--Conard, Vol. 3, p. 533.)

La Gonda (Bee Branch Township)

La Gonda was in the northeast corner of Sec. 18, Twp. 55 N, R. 16 W on Highway P south of Macon County line.

It was north of Wien. (--(--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)

Lewis Mill

Lewis Mill was located in the southeast corner of the county on Howard County line. (--(--Map of MO., 1917, Rand McNally.)

There is a Lewis in Henry County. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))

Lewis Mill was in the southeast corner of Chariton Township. (--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)


Malcolm was located in the northest corner of Yellow Creek Township. (--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)

Mendon (elevation 685 feet)

Mendon, south of Silver Lake in the western section of the county, is ten miles north of Brunswick. It had one store (1874). (--Campbell, p. 135.)

Mendon, not the present town, but a settlement one and a quarter miles of the present site was laid out in 1871 by Christopher Shupe. This became a good business center. The fact had been so since 1865, before the town was laid out. The survey of the A. T. & S. F. Railroad made this town uneasy for it was missed by over a mile. The dirt work for the railroad was done in 1886, and it then became an assured fact that there would be a new Mendon on the railroad. The rails were laid out in 1887 and 1888 and the new town became a reality...


The town site originally belonged to William and Charles Felt. Frank Newcomer started a lumberyard and hardware store. Later Eli Ward embarked in the implement business, and the business interests of Old Mendon began to move to the new town. The old town is a town no longer, only a few dwellings close up together is all that remains as a semblance of a town...(--Gehrig, pp. 247, 243.)

...It was known when first settled as Salt Creek. It had a church, public school, a bank, two hotels, a newspaper, The Citizen, and about twenty other businesses, both large and small, including shops and stores. Population 1899 (estimated) 350. (--Conard, Vol., p. 324.)

It is situated at Sec. 10, Twp. 55 N, R. 20 W at the junction of 11 & C.

Mike (Musselfork Township)

Mike is situated at Sec. 5, 6, 7 & 8, Twp. 53 N, R. 18 W at the junction of D & 5 north of C.

Mail via Marceline--rural; no population is shown. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))

The post office was discontinued pre 1905. (--Taft, p. 22.)

Muscle Fork (Mussel Fork)

It was a post-office 12 miles north of Keytesville. (--Campbell, p. 134.)

Musselfork receives mail via Keytesville and has no population. (--(--Rand McNally, 1974.))

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--Taft, p. 22.)


Namrash was south of Dalton. (--Williams, p. 357.)

It was located in Missouri Township, north of Cozzell. (--Map of MO., 1894, Rand, McNally.)

New Comer

New Comer was west of Indian Grove. (--Williams, p. 357.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--Taft, p. 22.)



Newhall is east of Mendon. (--Williams, p. 357.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--Taft, p. 22.)

Mail now via Mendon--rural; no population. (--Rand McNally, 1974.)

Pee Dee

Pee Dee was in Mussell Fork Township and was commenced in 1877, the first building being erected by the Grangers. It was a good inland trading point. It had a Union Church. (--Chariton Co., p. 247.)

Porche's Prairie (Triplett)

It was located on the Omaha Branch Railroad, seven miles northwest of Brunswick and had three stores and one tobacco factory. (--Campbell, p. 135.)

Prairie Hill

Prairie Hill in Wayland Township, an inland town nine miles northeast of Salisbury, was established as a post-office in the late 1870's. About 1875 L. T. Fawks built a big tobacco barn about three-quarters of a mile east of the present town site. The tobacco industry was a thriving one then and hogsheads of tobacco here were shipped to all parts of the United States and Europe.

James Foster was the pioneer merchant in this village and he began business here in 1878. James Farris built the next business and dwelling house. The town was never incorporated. In 1900 an academy was built here and under the wise administration of Hon. V. S. Hall, later of Columbia, Mo., students were drawn from all parts of the State and neighboring states...

There was a bank here--Farmer's & Merchants. There were three churches. The town is also the home of an inventor, Ben Hicken, whose inventive genius gave to the world the Sodtorlite iron, a soldering iron heated by acetyline gas and whose point is ever hot. The iron was manufactured at Prairie Hill...A lumber yard had been recently established at Prairie Hill. (--Chariton County, p. 215; Campbell, p. 135.)

It is situated at Secs. 5 & 6, Twp. 54 N, R. 16 W at the junction of H & W, near the Randolph County line.

Mail via Salisbury. Population 69. (--Rand McNally, 1974.)



Rockford was in the southern part of the county, north of Namrash. (--Map of MO., 1917, Rand McNally.)

It was four and one-half miles west of Shannondale. (--Williams, p. 357.)

Salisbury (elevation 730 feet)

Salisbury was founded April 1, 1867, by L. Salisbury (after whom it is named), G. W. Williams and O. W. Lusher. The land where Salisbury now stands once belonged to one Prior Bibo, 320 acres was granted to him, by the Federal Government for service rendered in the War of 1812. Bibo sold to John Bull, who in turn sold to James Bennett, and Bennett sold the half section to Judge L. Salisbury in 1856...for $400 in gold, or a dollar and a quarter per acre.

Judge Salisbury moved onto his recently acquired land in 1858, and built a box house for his temporary residence until a frame building of two rooms could be completed...The post-office was established several years before the town was laid out and John Hutchinson was the first postmaster.

In 1872, Salisbury was swept by a tornado...In 1877...and again in 1882, Salisbury was visited by destructive fires... (--Gehrig, pp. 241, 242.)

It was laid out in 1860, by Judge Lucius Salisbury, but did not grow any until the close of the (Civil) War, so its founding practically dates from 1866. In 1868 it was first incorporated... (--Conard, Vol. 5, p. 477.)

It contained 2 hotels, 3 tobacco factories, 1 saw mill, a first class flouring mill, 3 wagon, plow and agricultural implement manufactories, 1 cooper shop, 2 lumber yards, 4 churches, a public school, a public library of 500 volumes, the general offices of the K. & K. C. R. R., 1 newspaper...and about 40 stores and business houses... (--Campbell, p. 135.)

It is situated at Secs. 3 & 10, Twp. 53 N, R. 17 W at the junction of 129, 24 & H.

Salt Creek

See Mendon.


It was situated at Sec. 32, Twp. 53 N, R. 17 W on Highway 5, south of 24.

Shannon, on the K. & K. C. R. R., five miles south of Salisbury, had 1 store. (--Campbell, p. 135.)

It was in Salisbury Township. (--Gehrig, p. 229.)


The post-office was discontinued July 31, 1917. Thereafter mail was via Salisbury. (--MO. Manual, 1917, 1918, p. 644.)

Rothville (elevation 695 feet, Yellow Creek Township)

It is a post-office 17 miles north of Brunswick. (--Campbell, p. 135.)

Rothville in Yellow Creek Township came into being about 1868, although the town plat was not filed until 1883. A man by the name of Bristol erected the first business house and John Roth for whom the town was named commenced a business in one end of his dwelling house the same year. Bristol was the first postmaster and H. K. Custer was an early merchant... (--Gehrig, p. 244.)

It is situated at Sec. 19, 20, Twp. 56 N, R. 19 W on Highway E east of A.


Snapp was located southwest of Eccles, in Keystone Township, in Section 12. Sectional (--Map of MO., 1894, Rand McNally.)

Snyder (Railroad name Dean Lake)

It is located in the southwest corner of the county on Santa Fe Railroad. (--Williams, p. 357.)

Snyder Post-Office or Dean Lake, so named was on Sectional (--Map of MO., 1894.) In Triplett Township.

It is situated at Sec. 3, Twp. 54 N, R. 21 W near Carroll County line.


Stanley was located at the junction of the Burlington and St. Louis, Kansas City & Northern Railroad. (--New Atlas of MO., Map 18.)


When the Burlington Railroad made a survey running through Chariton County and within a mile of the thriving town of Cunningham, that town could not or would not raise sufficient bonus to induce the new road to come her way. Consequently the railroad company started a new town and called it Sumner in 1882. The first building was erected by J. M. Vance; a man by the name of Willett built the Commerical Hotel.

The birth of Sumner meant the death of Cunningham on the south for the Wabash transferred its station to Sumner from Cunningham. Business interests began to move to the town. Churches migrated and after a while about that Cunningham had was the school house.


Until the last few years (from 1923) the youth of Sumner had to trudge down to Cunningham to school but now--1923--they have an elegant new brick school building located in Sumner. The rivalry between the two towns was very bitter...

Sumner is not far distant from Laclede and many of its older citizens knew Gen. Pershing well, and Prairie Mount School, now a part of Consolidated District No. 3 of Linn County, claims the distinction of his having taught a term of school there. (--Gehrig, pp. 246, 247.)

It is situated in the northwest corner of Section 22, Twp. 55 N, R. 21 W at the junction of E & 139 west of YY.

Sumner is a village at the junction of the Chicago, Burlington & Kansas City and Wabash Railroads. It is thirty miles northeast of Keytesville and was formerly called Crossland. (--Conard, Vol. 6, p. 126.)


Trade was located between Echo and Mike. (--Map of MO., 1911, Rand McNally.)

The post-office was discontinued pre 1905. (--Taft, p. 22.)


See Porche's Prairie. (--Campbell, p. 135.)

Triplett came into being in 1870. The railroad, the Brunswick & Chillicothe R. R., now the Wabash High Line, put it on the map because it needed a station there...

The land on which the city of Triplett was laid out belonged to Alex Hooper and John E. M. Triplett and it was the latter who built the first house in the town and for whom the town was named...

J. Hignite was the first school teacher and the school house was in the south part of town. Johnson Reed was the town's first postmaster. William Asher was the village blacksmith and Geo. Blake was the first carpenter...Triplett was not incorporated until 1881. (--Gehrig, pp. 245, 246.)

It is situated in the southwest corner of the county at Sec. 18, Twp. 54 N, R. 20 W on Highway M.

It is an incorporated village, seventeen miles northwest of Keytesville. The place was formerly called Porche's Prairie. It had not over a half a dozen houses until the building of the Wabash Railroad... (--Conard, Vol. 6, p. 318.)



Westville, seventee miles north of Keytesville, in the northeast portion of the county...is an older and much more settled place than its fellows on the railroad. It had 3 stores, 1 tobacco factory, a steam flouring mill and other business houses. Population about 125--1874. (--Campbell, p. 135.)

Westville, in Clark Township, was laid out in 1857 by Dr. W. S. West, for whom it is named. The first business house was erected by Smith & Hagler. (--Gehrig, p. 247.)

Westville, a hamlet was one of the oldest places settled in the county. It was a prosperous town until the construction of the Santa Fe Railroad built up the rival town of Mardeline in Linn County. It now (1899) has a population of 100. (--Conard, Vol. 6, p. 451.)

It is situated at Sec. 25, Twp. 56 N, R. 22, south of Linn County.

Mail via Marceline. No population is shown. (--Rand McNally, 1974.)

White Oak Grove

White Oak Grove was located in Salt Creek Township. No other information is available. (--Gehrig, p. 235.)


Whitham was located in Sec. 30, Twp. 55 N, R. 20 W, south of Swan Lake National Refuge.


Wien, in Bee Branch Township, was laid out in 1877. It is a German Catholic Community, a splendidly equipped Catholic Church being the biggest feature in town. (--Gehrig, p. 247.)

The post-office was discontinued October 31, 1919. Thereafter mail via New Cambria, Macon County. (--MO. Manual, 1919-20, p. 732.)

It is situated at Sec. 14, Twp. 56 N, R. 17 W on 129 south of Macon County line.

Population 40. (--Rand McNally, 1974.)

It is a hamlet in the northeastern part of the county, with a population of about 200--1899. It was the seat of a Franciscan Monastery (Mount St. Mary's), around which the town was built. This monastery was established in 1877. (--Conard, Vol. 6, p. 465.)

It was named for Wien (Vienna) Austria, Hungary, 1877. (--Ramsay, p. 33.)

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