of Pulaski County Missouri with Mike Weber
web site designed by Robin Weber Hoffman
Hi, My name is Mike Weber. My
wife Paula and I have lived in Pulaski County, Missouri all our lives.
As I began our search many months ago for our ancestors, I soon discovered
that we were related to many of the Pioneers of Pulaski County. As my research
continued I was amazed how so many of the pioneer families inter-married
into many of the same families, and now have became one large family.
I began to compile information
to put into various books, pertaining to our ancestors. I soon discovered
that many of these books contained the same people. So I decided to start
a project, in which I would begin writing a series of books titled, " The
Pioneer Families of Pulaski County, Missouri."
I have presently completed several
volumes of the Pioneer Families of Pulaski County, MO. There are fifteen
volumes completed, which include the names of some 50,000 Pioneers and
their family members and approx eighteen more to go. The books I have available
are listed on another page. It is my hope that as I continue to publish
these books, that it will help, not only the families of Pulaski County
Pioneers, but anyone that may have ties to Pulaski County, Missouri. Please
join me as I take you back through "Moments in Time."
Here in Missouri's central Ozarks,
Pulaski County was organized in 1833, and was named for Revolutionary War
General, Polish Count Casimir Pulaski. Once roamed by Indians and French
trappers, the county is part of land ceded by the Osage Indians in 1808.
Southern pioneers were early settlers, attracted by fine springs, wooded
hills, honeycombed by caves, and the Gasconade and Big Piney Rivers.
The first settlement in the territory
now embraced in Pulaski County was made by three men, Johnson, Cullen,
and Dulle. They immigrated from Mississippi with their families and located
near the Gasconade River, at the noted "Nitre Cave', which was about five
miles west of Waynesville. After they discovered a superior quality saltpeter
there, they commenced to manufacture gun powder, for which they quickly
found a ready market among the trappers and hunters of the area.
One morning during the year of
1817, Mr. Cullen started out with a load of gun powder, loaded on his wagon.
He was never heard from again. It was never known whether he was ambushed
by hostile Indians, or what, because there was never a trace of him or
his wagon found. Being concerned for their safety, Mr. Johnson and Dulle,
decided to pull up camp and move to another part of the county, up river
from where they were located. They found a large spring running into the
Gasconade River, about 2 miles up river from where Waynesville later was
located. Here they built a large mill, used to grind wheat and other grains.
This mill was later sold to Solomon Bartlett, my great great uncle, and
it was named the Bartlett Springs Mill.
Also during 1817, James Ballew,
William Gillapsy, and Henry Anderson, of North Carolina, accompanied by
their families, settled on the Gasconade River about twelve miles southwest
of the site of Waynesville, near the Laclede County line. Josiah Turpin,
of Kentucky, also located there the same year. Soon after, Elijah and Elisha
Christeson settled on the land in the vicinity of the site where Waynesville
is now located. Cyrus Colley, settled in a "hollow", which was later named
after him. Later that year, Jeptha West, Jesse A. Rayl, Sr. and Thomas
Starke settled near the Christesons.
The Territorial Legislature, December
15, 1818, created a county, to be named Pulaski, in honor of Count Pulaski.
Its boundaries were never specifically defined though it included much
of the territory that two years later became Gasconade County. In 1859,
the boundaries of Pulaski County were defined as they are now. The first
county court met at the home of Jesse Ballew. In 1843, the Legislature
passed an act to locate the county seat, which was Waynesville. Josiah
Christeson and William Moore donated the land, which is now where Waynesville
is located. Early in 1844, a crude courthouse was built. It was used until
1873, despite being damaged during the Civil War, when a brick courthouse
Waynesville, in the scenic
Roubidoux Creek Valley, was named for the Revolutionary War General, "Mad"
Anthony Wayne. The town was a stage stop on the "St. Louis to Springfield
Road." This road was also called the "Old Wire Road," because it was the
same route the telegraph line traveled, strung by the Union Army. The Cherokee
Indians also camped here on their 1837, "Trail of Tears" as they were removed
to Oklahoma. During the Civil War, the Confederate flag was raised at the
courthouse in the spring of 1861, however in June of 1862, the Union Army,
under the command of Col. Albert Sigel, built a fort overlooking the Waynesville
The small garrison of troops were
responsible for protection of the settlers and wagon trains on their way
westward. The first railroad to be started in Pulaski County was surveyed
by the Southern Pacific in 1861. It run through south central Pulaski County,
but was abandoned because of rough terrain. Another route was later surveyed
and the route of the present railroad was complete in 1869. This railroad
opened up a new way of life for Pulaski Countians. The towns of Dixon,
Hancock, Crocker, Swedeborg and Richland, came into existence.
The California House, built ca
1856 and operated by Bennett and Sarah Musgrave The Civil War brought about
fierce division among people of Pulaski County. Neighbor against neighbor,
brother against brother and even members of the same household disagreed.
In 1861, the Confederate flag flew above the court yard. In May 1861, the
Union soldiers came to town, and on June 7, 1862 the flag bearing the stars
and bars were cut down. The end of the Civil War found our county in chaos.
Bushwackers were running rampant.
Prejudices and hatred was laid
aside and reconstruction began. After the Civil War, immigrants began to
come to this part of the state, and most of those that settled were from
Southeast Kentucky, Tennessee, and east and West Virginia. Some of the
pioneer families settling in Pulaski County during that time were Rayl,
Routh, Brittain, Colley, Tilley, Bartlett, Morgan, Mitchell, Christeson,
York, Hammock, Layman, Laughlin, Turpin, Dodd, Trower, Storie, Bailey,
and many more.
As the years passed many small
communities sprung up all over the county. These communities were mainly
made up of various families, that many times were the only neighbors for
miles. The community of Big Piney, located at the southern edge of the
county, was made up families by the name of Dye, Page, Welch, and others.
Just north and west of Big Piney, a couple other small communities were
started, Bloodland, and Tribune. Bloodland had the Laughlins, Yorks, Longs,
Woods, and others. Tribune was a post office that served the communities,
and was run by the Bailey family.
During the time when the railroad
was being built, many of the farmers cut ties between the crop season,
and that was mainly the source of income for many families. They were bought
on sight by the tie buyers, and many times floated to an assembly point
on the river, at Jerome, where they were loaded on railroad cars. On November
14, 1940, an announcement was made, that changed the lifestyle of Pulaski
The United States government
announced that they would be building a military base in Pulaski County.
As the Army acquired control over the proposed 65,000 acres, several small
communities such as Bloodland, and Cookville were phased out of existence.
The families settling in the small communities located on the land purchased,
soon moved and relocated to other parts of the county. Now the only trace
of the families on the original homesteads is the family cemeteries, that
have been proctected by the goverment. Construction began soon thereafter
and it was estimated that it would take some 15,000 construction workers
to build the camp. The post was named Ft. Leonard Wood, and since now has
become the largest engineer training center in United States. Pulaski County
as we know it today, is a triving,growing community of people from all
over the world.
The small communities of Bloodland,
Moab, Bellefonte, Cookville, Pleasant Hope are long gone. However, the
towns of Crocker, Richland, Dixon, Swedeborg, Devils Elbow, Hancock, St.
Robert, and Waynesville, still continue to grow and prosper. In the last
150 years Pulaski County, has seen many changes and as we get ready to
start a new century, we look forward to the future, however we never want
to forget the ancestors that have brought us through, "Moments in Time."
may find some of the pages aren't working - someone got into our files
and deleted them. We are working as quickly as possible to get them back
online. We do appreciate your patience!!
Please sign the
Moments In Time Guestbook!
Or Write to:
101 Summitt Dr.
Our First Award! From Plant Your
We've won another award!
here to go to Charlotte's Geneaolgy Page...THANKS for the award!
Silver Tree....Our latest award! Thank You!!!