Throwback Thursday-Fresh Bivalves and Robber Barons


Missour Pacific Railroad Depot in Rich Hill by moonlight

The Missouri Pacific Railroad Depot in Rich Hill by moonlight. Date unknown.


Courtesy of the Eddie Herrman Archives

January 8

1871-An ad in the Bates County Record states “Fresh bivalves (clams) served any hour, day or night” at the Pickett Hotel dining room.

1874-Mr. Rose moves his mill from on the Miami Creek to the Marais des Cygnes River 2 miles south of Bell’s Mill.

1885-The Confederate Vet Association of Bates County meets in the courthouse, P. Hackett, president.

1920-Lloyd Graves is the new manager of the Western Union Telegraph office  in Butler.

1937-About 7 a.m. several railroad cars are derailed south of Rich Hill, near Arthur, delaying trains into Rich Hill.

1973-The first baby born in the Bates County Memorial Hospital in 1973, is Cathrine Leslie Scott to Mr. & Mrs. John Scott of Adrian.  Attending physician is Dr. Curtis W. Long of Butler.

The Fraternal Inn building also know as the Hotel Pennell and the Inn Building circa 1920.

The Fraternal Inn building also know as the Hotel Pennell and the Inn Building circa 1920.

January 9

1882-Financier and railroad magnate, Jay Gould, passes through Butler at 1:30 p.m. on his special train of five coaches.  He’s one of the owner of the Missouri Pacific railroad.

1896-Manager Sanders of the Rich Hill Opera House announces the opening day will be the 23rd with The Hoyt Comedy Troupe.  It had burned on October 14, 1895.

1908-Rudolph Talbott opens a tailor shop in the west basement of the Hotel Pennell.

1922-In the past year of 1921, there were 42 divorces granted in Bates County.

1949Bates County is under a coating of ice and traffic is treacherous.

Interior shot of a Chautauqua being held in the Rich Hill Opera House.  Date unknown.

Interior shot of a Chautauqua being held in the Rich Hill Opera House. Date unknown.





Throwback Thursday-Christmas Edition

Christmas Postcard to James Bell from his Aunt Dora 1911


From the Eddie Herrman Archives

December 24

1862-At 3 PM, a man named Slater, who was captured by Major White and his troops while foraging along the Grand River in northern Bates County, is executed with 6 bullets in his heart, in front of I. N. Davidson’s store, on the west side of the Butler square.

1874-Butler jeweler John Duff presents the editors of the Bates County Record and Bates County Democrat newspapers with gold toothpicks.

1879-A shooting match is held at Stumptown, winners getting turkeys.

1883-The Rich Hill City Council authorizes Mr. Raeder to purchase an electric fire alarm for the city.

1890-The community wide Christmas celebration at Amoret is a huge success.

1920-Gratz M. Scott, Field Director of Jerfferson Barracks, writes to the Junior Red Cross in Butler, thanking them for the parcels of canned fruit and jellies sent to the Post Hospital.

1934-Judge P. A. Bruce sees a meteor flash across the sky from his window at the Southern Hotel.  He find it the next morning on South Fulton Street. It weighed 7 pounds.

Original Calico Ball Invitation printed on calico fabric.


December 25

1873-The Grand Calico Ball is held in the Courthouse.  The invitations are printed on white with green stripe calico.

1875-People on the square notice business signs have been switched around.

1879- A notice around Butler, “On Christmas day and after I shall give free lunch and hot coffee to my farm trade, at the old Regulator, right South of the Courthouse. Filar Sackett. ”

1907-Mr. and Mrs. E. M. Pennell host a party for the young people of Butler, at the Hotel Pennell.

1916-Mrs. W. E. Walton of Butler receives a Grand Knabe Piano as a Christmas gift from her husband, W. E.

Christmas poem date unknown


For more information on the Slater execution;








Throwback Thursday-Suffered By Beast and Man

Whizzo the Clown


Courtesy of the Eddie Herrman Archives

December 18

1861-Confederate troops move toward Butler and another toward Papinville as Union troops march from Johnstown.

1879-Advertised in the Bates Co Democrat newspaper “Aaron Hart, of Levy & Company, is prepared to sell dry goods.” East side of the Butler square.

1882-William E Walton has purchased the hotel property of Dr. Lansdown, just west of the new Opera House, and expects to enlarge it. Laclede Hotel.

1899-The Bates County courthouse is condemned and the occupants begin removing equipment as the walls seem ready to fall.

1902-In the Mound items in the Butler paper; Our new mail man is punctual even when the roads are horrid. A minstrel troupe is selling patent medicine and is doing well at Passaic. AND is Mount Olive church going to have a Christmas tree? Passaic is having one.

1915-The annual meeting of the Border Protective Association is held at the Hume Opera House, J. Gasaway, president.

1955-The first sermon is preached in the new church building of the Amsterdam Baptist Church, James A York, pastor.  Materials from the old church building and old school building were used.

1965-Whizzo, the clown, of Kansas City television, appears at King Arthur’s Bargain Barn in Butler.

December 19

1848-Southeastern Bates County is reeling from the six weeks of continuous sleet and the conditions with it.  Cattle are dying and many broken bones have been suffered by beast and man

1859-Jim, in the care of Harvey G. Hicklin, in Northwest Vernon County, slips away a during the night goes to John Brown’s fort, just west of Bates County’s Spy Mound, in Kansas. He tells Brown the slaves in his neighborhood were soon to be taken to Texas for sale and implores Brown to intervene.

1869-Daniel Cowan Jacking, owner/proprietor of the general mercantile business in Hudson City, dies in his sleep. (Hudson City was located in the northeast portion of section two in Hudson township)

1873-Someone puts arsenic in feed at the Crayton Owen farm, near Altona, poisoning 110 head of cattle and horses. Several die.

1883-Mrs. Ella Leabo, formerly Miss Ella Yoakum, apparently drowns herself in the family well near Foster. (See last week’s post for more details regarding this case.)

1890-One of the Cheverton Bros. Meat Market turkeys sails through one of their heavy plate glass windows this morning.  The Brothers say “this proves their meat is fresh.”

1896-When the Butler Masons enter their hall tonight, they find two gasoline chandeliers have been installed by Brother Morrison of Rich Hill, at a cost of $15 each. It is much brighter.

1932-Butler Mayor Frank Holland calls on the Butler banks to close for 30 days to readjust their distressed condition.  The Farmers Bank, Peoples Bank, and Duvall Trust Company do it.


The Farmers Bank on the east side of the Butler Square.  It was built in 1888 and torn down in 1919.  The Catterlin house can be seen on the left of the bank.  Security Bank is presently in this location.

The Farmers Bank on the east side of the Butler Square. It was built in 1888 and torn down in 1919. The Catterlin house can be seen on the left of the bank. Security Bank is presently in this location.









Throwback Thursday-The Coercive Influence of the Law

One of two original Jefferson Highway signs in the Bates County Museum collection.

One of two original Jefferson Highway signs in the Bates County Museum collection.

From the Eddie Herrman Archives

December 10

1877-Charles Robinson, who was injured November 26 at the Powers Saw Mill, dies of lockjaw. At his deathbed he confessed his real name was Richard Tuttle and he had run away from his Vernon County home several years ago.

1879-J.C. Clark, take collector, say that unless the delinquent taxes are paid by the 1st of January, “the coercive influence of the law will be brought into requisition”.

1883-Newlyweds, Mr. and Mrs. John Leabo, of the Foster community by a $2,100 life insurance policy on each other. (The body of Mrs. Leabo would later be found in a well.  John Leabo would  go on trial for the death of his wife and be acquitted on a technicality by the Supreme Court.)

1917-The Hume School building is partially consumed by fire.

1934-Highway representatives from 5 states assemble at Joplin.  They are suggesting a 4 lane highway from Canada to New Orleans, using Highway 71 from Kansas City to Arkansas.

1908-Tramps and vagrants are blamed in the fire that destroys the large club house at Athol, owned by a group of Kansas City hunters.

December 11

1861-In a nighttime raid by Kansas jayhawkers, Parkersville, founded in  1857 by Wiley Parker, is utterly destroyed. (South of Burdette in East Boone township)

1869-Theophilus Freeman, convicted murderer of James Westbrook, escapes from the Bates County jail.  He was to be hung the 17th.

1871-A mass meeting is held in the new courthouse to squelch rumors that Bates County is to be divided.

1882-Professors Johnson and Epstein open a music conservatory at the new Walton Opera House, southwest corner of the Butler square.

1883-J. C. Brook cannot make bond of $500, as he is charged with the shooting of Mr. Condre, Postmaster at Cornland, a short time ago.

1907-Rich Hill votes wet in the local option election, 415 wet, 270 dry.

2004-Kansas City Royals Hall of Famer Frank White is the Grand Marshall of Butler’s Christmas Parade.






Throwback Thursday-Tramp in the Henhouse


Bates County Courthouse built 1870

Courtesy of the Eddie Herrman Archives

December 4

1882-Gentlemen appointed ushers for the opening of Walton’s Opera House are; Sam Levy, Henry Levy, Joe Meyer, Ed Carnes, William Pyle, C. F. Burns, Robert Grierson, and Tom Petty. Butler.

1905-Major Falloon is erecting a massive hennery at his Mound township ranch, Southwest of Adrian. (Major Falloon’s home would later become known as “Young’s Mansion”.)

1915-Mrs. George Fresh, of Hume, apprehends a tramp trying to steal some eggs from her henhouse.

1934-Mrs. Susan Shannon & Mr. John Barrows, both of Rich Hill, present to the Bates County Court, a picture of Freeman Barrows, first county officer, unanimously elected County Clerk, Recorder, and Treasurer in 1840, serving until 1853.

December 5

1861-George Thomas, of Lone Oak township, is kidnapped by outlaws. Never heard of again.

1879-McReynolds & Schwenk, boot and shoe makers, are now in their new building on the North side of the Butler square.

1881-The new arc lights on top of the Bates County Courthouse, in Butler, are drawing huge crowds each night.

1913-Lorand O. Tabler is Altona’s new postmaster.

1934-The Grover Gilbert Chevrolet Company, on West Ohio street, displays the death car of Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow.  Noted criminologist, C. Wiley Stanley lectures of the couple’s demise.


Freeman Barrows



Throwback Thursday-A Deadly Charivari

Inside Levy's Store


Courtesy of the Eddie Herrman Archives

1851-A convocation of Master Masons is held at Balltown, Bates Co. and organize Osage Lodge #303, AF & AM.

1858-At the charivari for newlyweds John Hamilton and Emmaline Gibson, John McWilliams is accidently shot and killed at the McWilliams place, which later became the town of Amoret.

1861-Hundreds of robbers from Kansas flood into Bates County, robbing Butler and Johnstown and everything in between,  taking hostages, horses, livestock and plunder.

1880-Samuel Levy moves his dry goods from the North side of the Butler square to the Edwards Building, on the East side, to be ready for opening on Monday morning.

1920-A large crowd attends the pie supper at the Virginia school, west of Butler, and enjoy the play “Out in the Street”.  $32.18 from the crowd goes to buying a large bell.  Charlie LeFever lit the school house with free Delco lights.

1934-The City Oil & Gas Co., of Butler, has installed the latest in gas pumps. This one measures fractions of gasoline pumped. The uptown station only.

1942-Edward Larkey celebrates his 99th birthday at his home near Merwin.  He is thought to be the last Civil War veteran in Bates County.




Throwback Thursday-Set a Standard Time Already!



Southwest Corner of Butler Square showing Walton Opera House, E


From the Eddie Herrman Archives

1862-A battle between Bushwackers and Northern exponents occurs near Coleville, section 25 of Deer Creek township. (Northeast of present Adrian)

1880-This issue of the Bates County Record newspaper says, “Butler needs a standard time.  Right now the schools, the mills, and the railroads each have their own times.”

1883- Two young men named Medley & Couples are fined $5 each for running their horses on a public road, near Butler.

1890-Mr Wilson and family arrives in Amoret, to be the landlord of the new Stratford Inn, and pledges to have it open by the 18th.

1902-It is rumored that Lon Stanley will shortly open up the Laclede hotel.  Lon will make a first-class landlord.

1915-The workers at the Ideal Coal Mine, near Hume, are spooked by a crazy man who jumps from a train, claiming somebody is trying to murder him.  Constable Taylor takes him to safety, where no one can get to him. (the calaboose)

1944-Floyd Payne is in Amsterdam, on furlough from O’Reilly Hospital in Springfield, MO., wearing a Purple Heart.


Stratford Inn Amoret Mo postcard

Throwback Thursday-Landslides and Rip Van Winkle

Courtesy of the Eddie Herrman Archives

David Albaugh DeArmond

David Albaugh DeArmond



1870-The nearly completed bridge over the Marais Des Cygnes river, Southwest of Butler, goes into the river because of a landslide.

1884-Robert McWade as Rip Van Winkle, at the Walton Opera House is superb.

1900-In the general election in the 6th district, David A DeArmond defeats Samuel W Jurden and W O Atkenson. DeArmond is from Butler.

1919-Indexed with the Rand-McNally Missouri map is the town of Culver, with a population of two.

1928-Lucetta P Cobb is elected Bates County Superintendent of Schools.

1945-The Butler City Council signs a contract with Grover Gilbert for a parcel of land, on North US 71, for a future airport.



SOS: Save Our Steinway Committee presents pianist Mr. Blair Penney


The Save Our Steinway Committee invites the public to attend a free concert performance and fundraising campaign progress report to be held on Sunday afternoon, November 16th at 3:00 pm at the Butler Presbyterian Church, 301 N. Fulton, Butler, Missouri.  Mr. Blair Penney, Piano Specialist with Schmitt Music of Overland Park, Kansas will present a performance on the church’s Steinway grand piano.

Following a mini-concert, Blair will detail the in depth approach used by Steinway as they carefully disassemble, examine, restore and rebuild the instrument.  His knowledge of these processes will give attendees an inside understanding of the excellence the company is renowned for.

Following the presentation, Blair Penney and the SOS Committee will be available for questions and conversation as a lovely dessert buffet will be open for guests to enjoy.  This event is free and open to the public. Anyone interested in serving on a variety of sub-committees is encouraged to attend the afternoon program or to contact Peggy Buhr at the Bates County Museum (660-679-0134).