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Its Area-Water Courses-Old Settlers-Residents of the Township in 1848-Benton - Its History - Business Directory

Loutre was one of the original townships of the county; its area, however, was considerably reduced by taking from it a portion of the territory which forms Linn township. It contains fifty-four square miles and is watered by Loutre creek, with one or two of its tributaries, and by one of the affluents of Salt river.


Frederick Vaughan was a soldier of the Revolution and resided in Henry country, Virginia. He married Nancy Boulware, and they had Catherine, Polly, Nancy, Fannie, Patsey, Robertson, Frederick and Martin, all of whom settled in Shelby county, Kentucky. Martin, Frederick, Polly, Fannie and Patsey came to Missouri with their parents. Martin was married three times: first, to Rebecca Taylor, second, to Susan Proffit, and third to Caroline Wilborn. He had only three children, and was still living in Audrain county in 1874.
George Douglass, whose parents were Scotch, settled first in Amherst county, Virginia, and removed from there to Bedford county. He married Mary Tucker, and they had Lucinda, David, John, Murphy, William, Polly, Susannah and Sally. Lucinda, John, Polly and Susannah remained in Virginia, where they married and raised large families. Murphy married and settled in the northern part of Alabama. William married and settled in Byron county, Kentucky. Sally married John Coward, who settled in Shelby county. David was a soldier in the War of 1812. He married Sally White, a daughter of Jacob White and Rebecca Hollaway, by whom he had Nancy, Elizabeth, William B., Louisa, Edward H., Mary A., Martha, Lumira, Sarah, Edith, Robert H., Edna and Keran. William B., who is a minister, settled in Missouri in 1830. He was married in 1832 to Lucy Chick, the ceremony being performed by Esquire Enoch Fruite. They had six sons and two daughters. Mr. Douglass taught school for some time after he came to Missouri, and he had a great many grown pupils who did not know their letters. It was the fashion then to study out loud in the schoolroom, and each one would try to get his lessons in a loader tone than the others, and sometimes the noise would be so great that it could be heard half a mile. After Mr. Douglass began to preach he was frequently called upon to marry people. On one occasion he went seven miles to marry a couple, through a drenching rain, swimming several creeks that lay in his route, and returned the same day, for which he received the magnificent sum of fifty cents. He then had to go thirteen miles on a cold rainy day and pay that fifty cents to have the marriage recorded. Such were the trials of pioneer preachers. Edward H. Douglass settled in Audrain county in 1837. He married Mary J. Ogden, of Virginia, by whom he had two sons. He died in 1838. Sarah Douglass married her cousin, Robert Douglass, and settled in Johnson county, Missouri.
William Hall, of England, settled in Pennsylvania, and was killed by the Indians. His son John married Magdalene Smith, and they had John, William, Matthew, Jesse, Hezekiah, Elisha, Tabitha and Keziah. Elisha married Sarah Bent, and they. had ten, children. Two of their sons, John and Banks B., settled in Missouri in 1832. John married Elizabeth Moon. She is dead, but he is still living.
Coulbourn Brown, of Pennsylvania, was killed in the Revolutionary War. He had a son named Solomon, who settled in Bourbon County, Kentucky, when he was a boy. He married after he was grown, and had two sons, William and Coulbourn. The former lived and died in Kentucky. Coulbourn married Jane Taylor, who was of Irish descent, and they had William, Samuel, Alexander, Clarissa, George, Laban I. T., Coulbourn, Jr., Jane, Milton. and Elijah, all of whom, except Alexander and Eliza, settled in Missouri.
Daniel Clark and his wife, who was a Miss Shelton, were natives of Scotland. They emigrated to America and settled first in Lancaster county, Virginia, from whence they removed to Culpeper county, where they both died about 1799. They had six children William, John, George, Robert, Elizabeth and Polly. William married Elizabeth Hudnall, and settled in Mason county, Virginia, where his wife died December 14, 1816, and he died at the same place July 4, 1826. Their children were John H., Frances S., Jemima J., Elizabeth, Nancy, William M., and Polly A. . William M. married Elizabeth H. McMullin, and settled in Audrain county in 1839. Mr. Clark is a good neighbor and citizen, hospitable, industrious and persevering. He has a remarkable memory in regard to dates, and can remember the date of nearly every event that has occurred during his life.
The following persons were residing in Loutre township in 1848: R. P. Adams, J. D. Lorton, Jas. H. Claughton, Lewis Young, L. R. Turner, C. M. hall, Wesley B. Smith, Matthew H. Smith, J. W. Barry, Thomas Lorton, John Hasler, Spencer Davis, Henry J. Williams, Hugh A. Todd, John W. Kemp, James Nichols, John Lorton, Spencer B. Anderson, Alexander Thomas, Alexander Reed, Thomas J. Crane, Shelby Clark, Mastin Vaughan, Joseph Howard, Banks B. Hall, A. M. Petty, George Cail, George W. Brown, William N. Clark, David J. Fort, D. J. Cail.


Some time (probably a year) previous to the building of the C. & A. R. R. to Mexico, there was talk by the company of running said road through Benton up to Clinton, in Callaway county; accordingly, one A. G. Mason, from the East, bought 1,300 acres of land where Benton now stands, and on one-half section laid out a handsome town, with a view of inducing the C. & A. to come through here, but failing in this the enterprise was abandoned. Soon after this Samuel Barker moved from Lincoln county, Missouri, and built the first business house here, which was occupied by himself and son, Theodore, as general store up to 1874, when he rented this building and built another business house, both houses still standing. In June, 1881, Maj. J. S. Rollins, of Columbia, had the town resurveyed and platted and plat recorded. The town embraces about 50 acres.
The first blacksmith shop was started by B. F. Griggs, about the year 1870.
There are three general stores, to wit: Messrs. Whiteside & Orr, Messrs. Barker & Brett, and Charles Gray. The latter is also express agent and postmaster. There is a grain elevator, owned by Hisey & James, of Mexico; also another grain house owned by Whiteside & Orr; a hotel and boarding-house, owned by H. N. Neely; a black-smith and wagon shop, owned and run by J. A. Lanig ; a neat little school-house, built two years ago. The Presbyterians will build a church next year. The Presbyterians are the only organized denomination in the town.


John Cail, hotel proprietor; C. B. Clark, hotel proprietor; G. R. Romans, druggist; E. R. Douglass, physician; J. W. Douglass & Co., general store; Gantt & Fish, general store; Rev. W. T. Henson; O. Kreiger & Co., grocers; T. J. Lowder, grocer; Rev. T. J. Marlow; Andrew Pihala, hardware; James Murry, hay press; J. S. Muster, undertaker; Miss Ida Overbagh, milliner; S. V. Overbagh, postmaster; Louis Winters, shoe-maker; T. D. Owen, lumber yard; M. Rogers & Co., milliners; C. E. Burchard, railroad and express agent; A. W. Tappscott, justice of the peace; Wm. F. Taylor, physician; J. B. Torreyson, blacksmith; Frank Soil, blacksmith; John Weischouse, blacksmith; N. F. Aubrey, saddler; Geo. W. Ousley, livery stable.