By W.W. Watson
Barry Adage, October 1, 1903
Barry Depot 1951
Contributed by Delaine Donaldson
Historical Sketch of one of Pike's Pioneer Towns
An Article Regarding the Entry Settlement of Barry Township
It's First Inhabitants and When they Settled Here.
The organization of the Pike County Historical Society in Barry last year had for its foundation the compilation and publication at a later date of a history of the county, and in line with this movement and at the urgent solicitation of Col. Matthews, president of the society, Mr. W. W. Watson, of our city, prepared and read before the society Pittsfield Thursday, September 24, 1903, the following article on “Barry: Its History and People”, which we are permitted to publish by courtesy of the writer:
It was with much reluctance that I consented to furnish this article. The preparation of the historical story of the settlement and development of Barry township at this date, four-fifths of a century removed, without recorded facts or data and dependent upon the recollections of a few venerable citizens, is not the most agreeable undertaking; but realizing the importance of the movement and being in hearty sympathy with it, and further, from the prominence that the township and its people have occupied, not only in the early history of the county, but ever since, I feel that it is due not only to the present generation, but to posterity that these facts be perpetuated. I have endeavored to obtain all the accurate and reliable information possible at this time from the resources at hand, and with the valuable assistance received from many citizens, but especially from Joseph Greene and Burton T. Gray, who are probably more familiar with the past than any others, I feel that at least a small chapter has been added to history and that the efforts have not been entirely in vain.
Barry township is located in the north tier of townships in the west half of Pike county, Illinois, and is bounded on the north by Richfield, in Adams county, on the east by Hadley, on the south by Pleasant Vale, and on the west by Kinderhook townships. It consists of thirty-six sections, and about twenty-four thousand acres of land. The soil is for the most part rich and fertile and is well adapted to grain raising, grass and fruit. It is well supplied with springs, and two creeks, Hadley and Beebe, course through the township. The land is principally rolling, although level tracts are occasionally to be found along the creek bottoms. In natural resources the township is not surpassed in Pike county. The agricultural interests are carefully guarded and are well advanced. The land is divided into farms of medium size, generally from forty to one hundred and sixty acres. Few farms contain a half section or more. The staple crops are corn, wheat, oats, rye, and timothy and clover hay, although the soil is adapted to almost all crops known. All kinds of fruit can be raised here, and of late years large apple orchards have been introduced.
Nature was exceedingly kind to Barry township. It gave her hills and valleys, plateaus and timbered lands, creeks and springs and babbling brooks in profusion. Romance was indeed pictured at every hand. What an inspiring scene was presented to the first white settlers, Rev. David Edwards and Mr. Hadley, when in 1824 they cast their fortunes here. Nature was in all her glory. The axe and plow were unknown to her. Not a tree had been felled by a white man, nor a furrow turned. Wild game abounded. The rude wigwam of the Indian alone indicated habitation. But this condition of affairs was not permitted to continue. Other pilgrims appeared. Among the first were Rev. Wm. Blair and his sons John N., Harry, Samuel, Montgomery and Wm. Blair, Hezekiah McAtee and family, Alfred Grubb and family, all of whom figured in the history of the country at a later period. Then came Wm. Mayes and family, John Kruse and family, Moses Decker, Jesse Kinder, John Millhizer, Levi and Squire Askew, Ira Shelley and family, Wm. Gates and family, James Gates and family, Wm. Baker and family, Daniel Boulware, James Pulliam and family, Wm. Likes, Mr. Bureh, James Hull and family, Michael Gard, John Dewell, Jesse Mason and family, James Badgely, John Roberts, Morris Hammond, Benj. Barney, Mr. Hinch and others.
In 1836 came David Greene and family, Orlando Babcock, Henry Whitmore, Levi McDaniel and family, Tyre Jennings and family, Daniel Bary, J. E. Birdsong, Geo. Bartlett, John Cowan, Wm. Croftman and family, Robert Fletcher, and Wm., Joseph, Jacob and John McIntire.
In 1837 came Dr. A. C. Baker, John Gorton and family, Josiah and Wm. Lippincott, Daniel G. Hull and wife, Lauristan Brown, Mr. Linnville, Stephen R. Gray, Mr. Peabody, Albert Talcott and wife, Louis Triplett, Joel Hart.
In 1838 came Burton T. Gray, L. N. Ferris and mother, sister and aunt, Nelson Gray, Leonard Walker and wife, Nathaniel, Page and David Hart, Isaac Ware and wife, Nathaniel Smith, Geo. McClaskey, C. E. Mason.
In 1839 came John DeHaven, Daniel Emerson, Joshua Crandall and family, Thomas T. Gray and wife and mother, B. D. Brown and wife, Elisha Hurt and family, Josiah and Abner Rush, John T. Brown and family, James Likes.
Then came Benjamin Brownell and family, Wm. Blake and family, C. E. Bower, Orlando Watson and family, Denton Hull, Curt Davis, Simeon Fitch, Ephram Woodward and family, John Farmer, Alden, Arthur and Mahlon Bill, Leander Blake, Wm. Shields, J. P. Grubb, the Wikes – George, Joseph, David, and John, Richard St. John, L. Angle, Wm. Mitchell and family, Jas. R. Williams, Andrew Booth and family, Joseph Klein and wife, Mathias Widby, John H. Mallery, Alex. Liggett, A. G. Chamberlain, Wm. Hoyt, Wm. Myers, Wm. Guss, Thos. Nicholls, John George and others. It is impossible to learn all who came in those days.
The early pioneers were not idle. Gradually they subdued nature. Cabins were erected, land cleared and the virgin soil broken. The new settlement was a happy one. All were on an equality and sociability, generosity and neighborly kindness reigned supreme.
The first settlements were invariably made near the edge of a piece of timber and within easy reach of a spring, many of which were found in the township. Some fields were cleared and plowed, generally with yokes of oxen, and occasionally with teams of horses. This work was hard as the soil was tough or the ground stumpy. No extensive farming was attempted. Corn and wheat in small quantities were raised, some flax, oats, etc., and occasionally some settler who had come from a southern state would undertake to raise cotton, but it was not considered a success and was soon abandoned. Sheep were raised for the wool, which was found a necessary article. Farming was not as easily done in those days as now. Instead of the riding plow of to-day the early settler was content to use the old “bar-share” plow of rude structure and deficient mechanism, with its wooden mod-board as nature had fashioned it. Seed was sown or rather brushed in by dragging a sapling with bushy top over the ground. Grain was harvested with the sickle or cradle, and threshing was done with a flail, or the grain was trodden out by horses or oxen instead of with the modern appliances.
The resources of the early settler were very limited. They were all poor and in debt and everything was bought on credit. When money was borrowed it was at an exorbitant rate of interest. Corn sold at 10 cents a bushel and wheat at 37 ½ to 40 cents for the best grade, and it was on credit. All kinds of merchandise was high, calico selling at 50 cents a yard and common domestic at 25 cents.
Parched corn, ground hickory nuts and walnuts were used in place of coffee. Taxes were paid in coon skins, or anything the farmer or trapper could spare. The mode of travel in those days was principally on horseback, except short distances of a few miles, which were made on foot. Teaming was done with oxen and wooden wagons. Horse wagons and buggies were few. Wearing apparel was of home manufacture. Men wore buckskin pantaloons and coats, coonskin caps, and moccasins or rudely mad shoes for the feet, itinerant shoemakers visiting the homes of the settlers to supply the footwear. The women wove and made up the material for their wear.
The living consisted principally of wild game, pork meat and corn dodgers. Wild honey was plenty, also wild fruits, but vegetables were a rarity. The habitations were log cabins. They were built of rough logs, with mud plastered between the cracks to keep out the winter’s cold. The cabin consisted of one room, in which was combined the sitting-room, parlor, bedroom and kitchen. The floor was of puncheon and on one side was a large fire-place with a blackened crane for cooking purposes. Overhead from the rude rafters hung rows of well-cured hams and around the chimney were long strings of red pepper pods and dried pumpkins. The furniture consisted of a puncheon table, a clumsy cupboard, a couple of bedsteads made by driving stakes in the floor, in which were placed the uprights to support clapboards on which the beds rested, the wall furnishing the other support; some blocks for seats, a spinning wheel, a well-kept gun and the family dog. The cooking was done in iron vessels on and around the log fire. If the weather was cold, the family large or company present, which frequently happened, the wood was piled on so as to raise the heat and cause “all hands to set back and give the cooks a chance.”
The earliest settlers, those who came prior to 1830, were subjected to considerable trouble in obtaining legal title to their farms. Before that year the general government did not offer the land for sale, and all the titles they held were “claims.” By agreement among themselves each man was permitted to “claim” as much timber land as he might need, generally not over a quarter section, upon which he might build his cabin and make other improvements, and woe unto the speculator or new comer who attempted to jump a “claim” occupied by a bonafide settler.
Most of the land in Barry township was taken by those claimants before the land came into the market. These claims were bought and sold, the purchaser coming in to possession of the improvements, together with whatever might be considered as pertaining thereto. Many quarrels and much contention resulted from this state of affairs, as might naturally be expected. Another proceeding that would in this day be considered as high-handed took place when the land sales were held at Vandalia in October, 1829. The pioneers gathered there in numbers, and when the lands of the township were offered for sale no speculator was permitted to purchase until all the settlers had made their selections.
St. Louis was the market for the earliest settlers, but in a few years Louisiana bid for their trade, and later Hannibal and Quincy furnished the markets for them. In reality, the farmers of those days had little to sell, and owing to their limited means were light buyers and only purchased such articles as were absolutely needed. Not until the advent of the Hannibal & Naples railway (now part of the main line of the Wabash railroad system) in 1869 did farming become general in our community. Since then it has bee conducted profitably and extensively.
A troublesome problem for the pioneers was the absence of flour mills. They could raise the grain, but the primitive style of converting it into a palatable food was more difficult. The first year or two after the settlement the grain was pounded in a mortar or grated in a tin grater. Then came the hominy mill, which in turn was followed by the band mill. Flour was occasionally secured from St. Louis. In 1830 a flour mill was built at Rockport, and that place at once took on more than usual importance.
On going to the horse mills the settlers would have to take their turn in having “grist” ground and frequently would have to wait days before they could be waited on. A horse mill was operated near the Wm. Farmer residence, in the north part of town, in 1837. Later the burrs were removed to a sawmill which Bartlett & Birdsong had built at the foot of what is now known as Diamond Hill. This mill was sold to Brown & Owens and burned in 1840, not long after they took possession.
John Burdan built a water mill on Hadley creek, near the Hadley township line, about 1842. It was not a success and soon quit business. In 1843 or 1844 Isaac G. Israel came here from Jacksonville and built what has since been known as the Little St. Louis mill on section 26 of this township, which was then a wilderness. This proved a great convenience and was hailed with delight by the residents. Israel operated mostly on credit (having also embarked in pork packing and merchandising) and after about three years failed. The mill then fell into the hands of Joseph Klein, an attorney, by whom it was sold in 1855 to B. D. Brown and John McTucker, who conducted the mill until the breaking out of the war, when it was purchased by Hancock Brothers. After that it was conducted by Hill & Bruns, Bruns & Earnst, Bright & Carter, W. F. White & Co. and N. S. Gunnells. The old building still stands, but was abandoned for milling purposes years ago. Another flour mill was built by Wm. Shields in 1853. He also built a second mill in the same vicinity at a later date, which was afterwards purchased by Wike & Perry and remodeled, but the venture was not successful, and the mill went in to disuse. With the introduction of the railroad C. & S. Davis built a mill near the Wabash station in Barry and a few years later it fell to Calvin Davis, who in turn sold the property some years later to the Barry milling Co., a corporation organized by Eugene Smith, M. Strubinger, M. G. Patterson and Bartholomew & Coe. The latter company rebuilt the mill and has since operated it on an extensive scare, providing our latter day farmers an excellent market.
Another very important industry established in our township by Jesse Mason was a combined corn mill, saw mill and carding mill, which later was secured by George Wike and was the foundation of the woolen mill so long known. In 1842 George, David, Joseph and John Wike and J. P. Grubb, all practical woolen mill employees, under the firm of Wikes & Grubb, fitted out the mill with looms and other machinery for making cloth. There were nine employees, with George Wike as superintendent, which office he held for years. The business gradually increased and a brick addition was added to the frame. In 1849 George Wike became the sole owner and he operated it until 1851, when the mill was leased to J. P. Grubb and O. H. Perry, who operated it five or six years. There was a reorganization in 1863 and a firm known as the Barry Woolen Mills was organized with Geo. Wike, J. P. Grubb, O. H. Perry, D. W. Greene and E. A. Crandall as stockholders. Soon after this Jordan Freeman was taken in as a partner and a tobacco factory was added, but that venture not paying it was soon discarded. In 1868 J. H. Wike and W. G. Hubbard bought O. H. Perry’s interest in the mill. The mill some years later was sold to the American Woolen Co., an eastern company, which made a failure of it, and it then went into W. W. Bartholomew’s hands, but after a short trial he also quit the business. He still owns the building, but has disposed of the machinery, and the once prosperous settlement has gone into decay. It was here that Hon. Scott Wike passed his boyhood days. Just back of the woolen mills is a large cave through which courses water from a spring. It has been explored several hundred feet and years ago attracted widespread attention.
A distillery was built and operated near Hadley creek by Wm. Lippincott in an early day. Whisky sold at 12 Â½ cents at the still and it was a popular beverage, but with the scarcity of grain and low price of the product it was not found profitable enough to continue. One of his buildings was afterwards converted into a flour mill by Wm. Shields and another into a porkhouse.
A tanyard was operated on the Wright place, west of town, by a man named Burch prior to 1836, at which all kinds of leather was made. Wm. Hosier afterward operated the yard. They did only a small business.
Pork packing has also long been a favorite business in Barry. Since the town was in its infancy down to the present day it has been successfully carried on here. Probably the first to engage in the business was Henry Whitmore, then followed in succession Theo. Digby, Isaac G. Israel, Angle & Brown, C. & S. Davis, L. Angle, Sweet & Mallery, Hammond & Blades and W. F. White & Bro. and for the past few years the Hartford Provision Co., whose dominating force is W. W. Bartholomew, of Hartford, Conn., which firm does an extensive business not only in handling hogs, but also in cattle, sheep and poultry. A notable change in the manner of handling the business is also apparent. In olden times the farmers did the slaughtering principally and brought their hogs to market prepared for the cleaver’s block; then later the hogs were driven to the packing-house “on foot”, and now the animals are conveyed on wagons to the place of their destruction. The shipping facilities of to-day are also in marked contrast to those of the early days, when the only means of transportation was by team (ox or horse) to Cincinnati landing, a landing on the Mississippi river 12 miles southwest of here, where the product, such as sidemeat, shoulders, bacon, etc., would be piled along the river bank in the winter time to await the early spring boats for shipment to St. Louis. Now there are daily shipments in refrigerator cars.
The cooper business was another industry that was carried on extensively while the country was new and timber plenty. Nelson Gray had the first shop where the city building now stands. J. E. Birdsong worked for him, but later took the formanship in Isaac Israel’s shop in 1844. Levi Askew, Joseph McIntire, Fred. Frike, J. C. Frike, J. W. White and C. F. Kenning also had shops at a later day. Among the coopers were Andy Arnett, Squire Askew, James Bond, Arnold Woodward and Alpheus Baker. The barrels were used by the pork-packers and the distillers hereabouts and at Quincy.
Brick-making was first introduced by a man named Racey in 1845 at Little St. Louis. Wm. Lynch had a yard in the east part of town soon after, and in the early fifties Abram Badgley made the brick in the northwest part of town for the present Methodist church, and Ephraim Woodward had the brick for the Baptist church made at his farm, 1 Â½ miles north of Barry. In 1860 Ed Churchill and Jeff Tabor had a yard in the north part of town, and later Mr. Churchill had a yard J. Bodine was another manufacturer of that day. Harrman Plassmyer had a yard near the woolen mills in the sixties, selling out after a few years to W. T. Mitchell and J. B. Allen. In 1869 N. P. Hart established a yard at his place, one mile west of town, and he was succeeded by J. C. Chilton, who started the yard in the west part of town which is now conducted by his son, C. H. Chilton. The Chiltons also made tile.
Stone quarries have abounded in the township for many years, and lime kilns have at various times been operated.
Charcoal was burned in an early day by Wm. Boyles. David Rippey also burned a kiln or two.
The mail facilities of the early settlers were quite limited, and carrying the mail was attended with hardship and danger. It was done principally on horseback. The principal route the first few years was from Quincy to Carollton, Ill. These trips were made once a week on horseback. Residents of Barry township sent a carrier, also by horseback, to meet the through carrier at Pleasant Vale post-office, near what is now New Canton, where the small outgoing mail was exchanged for the incoming mail, after which the carrier returned and delivered the letters (there were few papers sent) to the settlers. Dan Gray and Wm. Smith had that work in charge for several years. In 1839 a post-office was established at Barry, with Stephen R. Gray as the first postmaster, who had his office first at what is now the Hazen place, in the east part of town, and later at the old Ross corner of block 38. The postage on each letter was 25 cents, which had to be paid by the receiver. Little writing was done, as the settlers could not spare the money necessary for frequent postage. Each letter or package of letters sent had to have a way bill accompanying it. Often letters sent collect were refused by the one directed to. In 1853 the first daily mail was established between Naples and Hannibal, via Barry, and afterward the mail went to Quincy. It was carried by stage from 1853 to 1869, when the railroad car succeeded the stage coach. The present postmaster is C. H. Hurt.
In its early history Barry was joined with Hadley in an election precinct. The voting was done in Barry, when each elector would go before the judges, announce whom he desired to vote for and have his vote recorded. This plan was continued until the adoption o the new constitution in 1849, when each township was made a separate precinct. Elections were slow in those days and after a general election it was several months before the result was known.
Mr. Hadley built the first cabin in the township and made the first improvements on Section 21. Hadley creek was named for him.
The first wedding was that of Samuel Blair and Miss Lucy Brewster, which was performed in 1829 by Rev. Samuel Stone at his home, and their daughter Louisa born in March 15, 1839, was the first white child born in the township.
The first death was that of Mrs. Amanda Davis in 1831. She was the mother of Calvin and Samuel Davis.
Rev. Wm. Blair preached the first sermon in his own log house, on section 30, in 1829. He also taught the first school in a log building on section 28 in 1830.
There are two dark pages in Barry’s history which we would gladly avoid. The first relates to the period of horse stealing and vigilance committee. It was in 1858 that this sort of crime was rife. The country was overrun with thieves, who did not confine their efforts to horse stealing alone, but purloined everything else they could lay their hands on. Our citizens became excited and determined to put a stop to their ravages. A vigilance committee composed of leading citizens was organized and the work of extermination followed. It was very effective, if not in keeping with good morals. One man, named Lock, was shot as he was taking a horse from Squire Dutcher’s barn, one mile east of Barry, and he died in a few days after, but while he yet lingered a cousin of his, also named Lock, was captured and taken to a tree on the L. N. Ferris place, adjoining town, and hung. These acts aroused much public indignation and excitement, but they accomplished their purpose and thieving abated in short order.
The other period of lawlessness was during the war of the rebellion when our country was invaded by gangs of reckless and murderous criminals from Missouri, who were known as “bushwhackers.” Many acts of depredation were committed by them and citizens were abused on every hand. This state of affairs culminated with the murder of Francisco Gard, who was assassinated by one Crowe on the evening of March 2, 1864, while leaving his sick wife. Public Indignation was aroused to a high pitch over this atrocious crime and armed organizations were effected and the marauders were soon driven from this locality and, in fact from the county. Crowe was arrested for the crime, but while awaiting trial broke out of the Pittsfield jail. He was again captured a few days later in Greene county, Ill., and in resisting arrest was shot by the officers and died at the home of a farmer near the scene of his second capture. The county experienced the usual early day street fights and during the grading for the railroad in 1858 public morals were occasionally transgressed, yet the two periods above referred to were the most serious.
Barry was organized as a township in April, 1850, as the result of an election held over the county the previous November. Montgomery Blair was our first supervisor. The township was designated by N. R. Davis, supervisor; S. B. Day, town clerk; Douglas Myers, assessor; M. W. McIntire, collector; Wm. Borthwick, Jr.; and S. P. Hornback, justices of the peace; Thomas Fitzpatrick and G. B. Hall, constables; and A. O. Hart, Levi McCarl, Robert Bonifield, highway commissioners.
CITY OF BARRY
It was during the days when the speculative fever first swept over Illinois that the village of Worcester came into existence. After harvest in July, 1836, in the midst of wheat stubble, two men named Geo. Bartlett and John E. Birdsong, agents for Calvin R. Stone, of the firm of stone, field * Marks, of St. Louis, Mo., made the surveys and the plat of the future village. Mr. Stone was killed the same fall by the explosion of a steamboat on the Ohio river at Cincinnati. About the same time that Worcester was conceived, a rival company laid out another town about one mile east of Worcester on land that afterward was owned by John McTucker and B. D. Brown, which they named Reedfield. This latter movement failed and the town never materialized.
Six weeks after the surveyors completed their work Worcester received its first inhabitants, David Greene and family, consisting of husband, wife and seven children, of whom Joseph Greene, now living, was one, and Orlando Babcock, natives of New York. They took up their abode in the one cabin in the place, which had previously been vacated by a man named Holcomb. This cabin stood at what is now the intersection of Bainbridge and Mortimer streets. Soon other residents began to arrive and other cabins were built. J. E. Birdsong, George Bartlett, Henry Whitmore, Daniel Bary, John Cowan and Wm. Croften and family were among the first. Then came Dr. A. C. Baker, Josiah and Wm. Lippincott, Stephen R. Gray, Mr. Peabody, Lauristan Brown, Albert Tolcott and wife, Nelson Gray, Barton T. Gray, L. N. Ferris, D. W. Greene, I. G. Howe, Jas. B. Allen, F. M. Dabney, Calvin Jackson, John B. Hazen, Fred Frike, J. C. Frike, Lewis Angle, Coester R. Churchill, R. W. Howlett, Jon Watson, Chauncey Metcalf, Jas. Yancy, P. E. Howland, Andrew Booth, C. S. Allen, David Shields, Albert Blake, C. S. Allen, Alex Early, Wm. Eddingfield, Wm. Bright, Allan Robinson, R. B. Robinson, Jesse Chandler, John A. Hall, M. Lane, the Jones Hollembeaks, Kidwells, and others.
The Greenes, soon after arriving, in 1836, moved to a log house on lots 1 and 2 block 8 (the Schuyler Gray place), which was built for them and was the first cabin built after the village was laid out. This building still stands as the only representative dwelling of those pioneer days.
As newcomers appeared a boarding house became a necessity, and David Greene thus became the first to establish one. With only one small room their accommodations were merger, yet as high as twenty persons at a time received accommodations. While one table full (seven or eight persons) were fed, the rest of the boarders loafed around on the outside of the building. Sleeping room was obtained in the cabin, smokehouse, etc. Board cost $1.25 a week. The next boarding house was kept by a Mr. Owe, a tailor, who had his shop and residence in a dwelling built by John Blair in block 38 in 1838. That same year the village was honored with a hotel, which was established by John De Haven on block 19, which has ever since been occupied by a hotel and is now the site of the Hotel Doras.
The new village had barely begun its career before complications arose over mail matters, and it was discovered that another postoffice by the same name existed in the state. The general government when petitioned to establish a postoffice at Worcester required that a new name be take for the place, hence in 1839 the village name changed from Worcester to Barry upon the petition of the citizens. The honor or renaming the place fell to Mrs. B. D. Brown, who was a native of Barre, Vt., and she suggested that name. But by some means the name was misspelled and instead of “Barre” it was given as “Barry,” which was permitted to stand as the title.
Merchandising was introduced in the village by Bartlett & Birdsong, two men employed in laying out the place, who conducted for a few months a small store in a log building which they erected in the spring of 1836 on block 12, in nearly the northwest part of town. Mr. Birdsong sold out to David Greene and the firm name became Bartlett & Greene, who built a store building at the Blair corner (lot 5 block 23) and removed there. This store burned in 1837 and the firm quit business. Daniel Bary started a blacksmith shop in 1836 in the vicinity of the first store.
In 1838 Whitmore & Peabody opened a store in a building that had been built on the Wendorff lot in block 35, there being no store here then. Mr. Peabody died in 1840 and his surviving partner, Henry Whitmore, then built a small store building at the south-east corner of the park, now the J. H. Mallery property, and continued the business there, packing pork in the cellar of the store. Whitmore was succeeded by Theodore Digby, who met with business reverses and sold the store to his brother, James Digby. The firm also became Digby & Sears. Nathaniel Smith and Nathan Hadsell also kept store there.
Wm Hart opened a harness shop on lot 5, block 8, in 1837, and the next year Gardner Mayes secured the building for a grocery store. Nelson Gray at a later period conducted the business there. Another merchant of that time was a M. Scott, who had his store on a lot 2, block 23, now the Mayes & Son location.
About 1844, Isaac G. Israel came and engaged in business at the former Whitmore & Peabody stand. He was a speculator, and not only had a store, but packed pork, build a flour mill and established the village of Little St. Louis, one mile west of Barry, where he built several houses, besides the mill, cooper shop, etc. The place bid fair to out-rival Barry in its day, but Israel did not prove a successful manager, and upon his failure in 1847 the down-fall of Little St. Louis began.
Lewis Angle came over from Hannibal in 1845 and opened a store in a 12 x 14 room on lot 6, block 20, and the next spring he went into partnership with George or David Shields at the corner of lot 4, block 23 – now the Hollembeak corner. They were succeeded by Shields & Lillis in 1853. Morris Hammond and J. B. Chamberlin were the next occupants of the room, and at the end of a year this firm changed to Hammond & Greene, and later to Greene & Richards, who retired a the breaking out of the war, Mr. Richards enlisting in the army.
Montgomery Blair went in to the business at the corner of lot 5, block 23, about 1847 and operated on a cash basis – a startling departure for those days. He was succeeded by M. Blair & Co.; they by C. & S. Davis, and this firm by S. Davis & Sons, all of whom conducted general stores and packed pork. Blair & Co. also sold lumber.
An incident occurred at the Blair store in 1849 that is still fresh in the minds of our older citizens. There were several men in the store at the time who were discussing the qualities of a rifle. Geo. Kimball was examining it when the weapon was accidentally discharged, the ball passing through the side of the store building and through the arm of Joshua Bond, who was standing just outside talking to a friend. The affair created quite an excitement but did not terminate seriously.
In 1849 Angle & Brown opened a store at the corner of lot 1, block 22. They were succeeded by Angle & Crandall, who in turn were succeeded by Widby, Frike & Sweet, who after two years’ experience sold the stock to L. Angle, and he transferred it in 1862 to Sweet & Mallery. Mr. J. L. Sweet retired later and the firm became John H. Mallery & Co., who only a year or two ago quit business.
J. B. Chamberlin began the clothing business in 1858 in a building that had been removed here from Little St. Louis. He afterwards bought lot 8, block 21, and built a store building which he occupied for years, or until it was replaced by a modern brick structure. Mr. Chamberlin is still in business, being the senior member of the firm of J. B. & A. J. Chamberlin.
Other merchants and business firms of early days and up to the sixties were: Elisha Hurt, Gray & Huntley, Gorton & Dutton, Jon Watson, L. D. White, W. F. White & Co., Hammond & Blades, Hammond, Blades & Dutcher, E. W. Blades, T. A. Gorton, William Bright, Mr. Cleveland, M. Lane, Lane & Bernard, Jones & Hollembeak.
Calvin Jackson had a daguerreotype gallery here in 1854.
A Dr. Shepherd had a drug store in a room on lot 1, block 22, as early as 1850. He sold to Jasper & Sons; Cromwell & Whittaker succeeded them; then came Dr. Washburn and later A. T. Kinne, who was succeeded by Ferguson & Weiss. D. K. Weiss, of the latter firm is still in the business. Josiah Rowand opened a drug store in 1856. The firm afterwards became J. S. Rowand & Son, and is now B. H. Rowand. Another drug store at a later date was one kept by Dr. G. H. Long.
Business the first few years of Barry’s history was very light. The money in circulation was principally Mexican dollars. Small change was scarce and currency was a rarity.
The school advantages of the children of pioneer days and even years later were very limited. Up to about 1850 the schools were all private; any person who cared to and could secure the scholars was permitted to teach. It was all on the tuition plan, the teacher receiving pay directly from the parents and “boarding around” among the residents of the neighborhood. In 1837, Miss Alma Jones, sister of Mrs. J. H. Mallery, conducted the first school in the village in a small building on block 18. She had about a dozen pupils. The next school was in the M. E. church of that day, which was located on Church square. It was taught by Mr. Mason. Next a building was built on College square for school purposes, and in 1851 the first school supported by taxation was held in the two story building erected for the purpose on Merchant’s square, and was used until 1874, when a new and larger building was necessary and the present handsome edifice was erected at a cost of $12,000. W. T. Mitchell was the contractor.
The following are some of the teachers of years ago in Barry and vicinity: Rev. Wm. Blair, Alma Jones, Mr. Mason, Martha Ferris, L. N. Ferris, Wm. Thompson, Miss Tarbell, Mary Quarles, Miss Swetland, Jon Watson, Jon Shastid, C. E. Bunce, Joseph Gill, Miss Litterbrand (Mrs. Sewall), Cina Babcock (Mrs. Calvin Davis), Saman Jones (Mrs. J. H. Mallery), Synthia T. Spink (Mrs. Joseph Greene), W. T. Mitchell, Antoinette Brown, Kate Harvey (Mrs. G. W. Chrysup), Anna Jones, Lizzie Phillips.
To-day there is an attendance of 375 pupils in the Barry school and the following is the corps of teachers: Prof. E. H. Calhoun, superintendent; Mary E. Goff, principal; Herbert Hendricks, assistant; T. C. Moore, grammar; Nettie Shewe, No. 6; Jennie Mitchell, No. 5; Bessie Fitzpatrick, No. 4; Lettie Hubbard, No. 3; Ella Thompson, No. 2; ----Walters, No. 1.
There has always been a healthy religious sentiment in Barry. As early as 1838 the Methodists organized a society and built the first house of worship on what is known as Church square, but it was not until 1847 that the little band of worshipers became strong enough to command recognition from conference. In that year Barry circuit was established with Revs. L. C. Packard and H. S. Shaw as “circuit riders.” The present church edifice, a very neat and commodious structure, was built in 1851 on block 26. Rev. M. Shunk being the minister then in charge. Barry station was established in 1870; Rev. J. W. Sinnock was assigned to the charge. At this time Rev. W. M. Hailey is the pastor.
The Baptist church was first organized in June, 1829, at Atlas, by Elders Jacob Bowers and Jesse Sutton. Eight persons constituted the roster of membership. Meetings were held at the homes of the brethren in various parts of Pleasant Vale township until the year 1836, when it was decided to build a house of worship near the Mayes spring, about a mile west of Barry. Afterward the church rescinded that action and a committee consisting of James Gates and Tyre Jennings was appointed to solicit funds to build a church in Worcester, now Barry. A small frame church was finally secured in 1840 to 1841; it was located in block 1, Brown’s addition. In 1842 the Sunday school, under the superintendency of Charles Mason, was added. The church now occupied by the society was built in 1853 and was dedicated on Feb. 22, 1854, S. F. Holt pastor. Rev. H. H. Hurley is the minister now in charge.
In 1843 the Christian church was organized, and this society, like others, held their meetings in school-houses and private residences, until 1848, where the brick church on block 5, Brown’s second addition, was erected. In 1867 their Sunday school was organized with J. H. Mallery as superintendent. The society had a great religious awakening in 1896, as a result of the efforts of Elder Morgan Morgans, and imbued with a spirit of enterprise they set about and secured funds for an elegant new church which was completed in 1898. Rev. E. B. Richey is pastor of the church at this time.
The above are the only active churches of to-day, although in years past other denominations existed here.
The Congregationalists had a church at one time, but the society was never strong and deaths and removals nearly obliterated it. The church building was finally sold and removed. A dwelling now occupies its site or block 49.
Another sect that flourished here was the Universalists, which claimed some of our most prominent citizens of its day. In 1858 they undertook the erection of a church and parsonage. Both buildings were made of grout and were of unique and striking character. Before the buildings were completed dissension arose in the church which culminated in disbandment. The church building was used many years afterward as a town hall and was finally sold and dismantled, as was also the parsonage building.
Along in 1882 a society known as Christadelphians, and latterly known as Christian Brethren, was organized here by Elder L. T. Nicholls, an itinerant preacher hailing from Oregon. Quite a number of persons were induced to come here and locate. They built a church and good homes, were well supplied with this world’s goods, and seemed a happy flock. Only a few Barry citizens embraced the religion. In 1901 Rev. Nicholls conceived the idea of building a mission ship to ply the Mississippi river for the purpose of spreading the gospel as taught by him. The plan was carried out and the entire membership of the society sold their church and homes here and began their mission work, which they still continue, being at present on the lower river.
Camp meetings were a favorite form of religious worship in the early days. They were quite common and often attracted the residents for miles around. These meetings were usually held at what was known as Liggett’s spring, now C. E. Greene’s spring, which it located one mile west of Barry.
Barry has always been quite a place for secret societies, and many of them have at various times flourished within her borders. Probably the oldest society is Barry Masonic lodge, which was organized in 1845. Then it had the Washingtonians, the Good Templers and others. To-day it has three lodges of Masonry, three of Odd Fellows, one of Ancient Order of United Workmen, Modern Woodmen of America, Court of Honor, Mutual Protective League, Grand Army of the Republic, Women’s Relief Corps, Fraternal Army of America and Loyal Americans, and all with large membership and apparently flourishing.
The newspaper history of Barry dates back many years. The first paper was a small sheet with an office in the second story of the old Wendorff building. Next the Barry Enterprise George W. Smith publisher, appeared in 1857, but soon suspended. It was followed by the Weekly Dispatch, by Shaffner & Goldsmith, which also retired, after a short existence. L. L. Burke started the Barry Observer about 1869, but it lasted less than a year. In 1871 J. H. Cobb established the Barry Weekly Adage, which was bought by S. E. Colegrove in 1878; then by Cobb & Watson, and then for twenty-years was conducted by W. W. Watson. Since 1898 A. E. Hess has been the publisher.
The Unicorn Greenback was started in 1877 by Simeon Fitch and lived ten years. W. T. Lakin published the Sun for a few months in 22889, and G. G. Curnut published the Press for three months that same year. The Breeze, started in 1895, is now published by G. E. Davison.
The electric light system was installed in 1893. It is of the incandescent style, a light being placed at each street intersection.
Banking began here by the organization of the Exchange Bank of Barry in 1872. It was a private bank and the firm was known as C. & S. Davis & Angle, Eugene Smith, cashier. It is still under Mr. Smith’s management and the firm is now known as Smith, Crandall & Co. The First National bank was organized in 1901, with T. A. Retallic president and O. Williamson cashier.
The Barry Public Library and Reading Room was founded in 1876 as a private corporation, and in 1884 was donated to the city. A new and handsome structure is now building at the southwest corner of the park to accommodate the library. It will be a handsome edifice and an ornament to the city. Mrs. B. D. Brown at her death left the funds to pay for the property.
The first Fourth of July celebration in Barry took place in 1838, when a liberty pole ninety feet high was raised in the park. The celebration was in the form of a barbecue. A pit was dug in the park in which a rude oven was made and a beef roasted. Tables 100 feet long (50 feet each side of the pole) were built, which were covered with slabs and brush for shade. There were no trees there then. Probably 200 of 300 persons stood and partook of the meat. Very few chairs were used. The forenoon was devoted to games, foot races and visiting, and after dinner speaking took place in a dwelling Mr. Peabody was building and which was partially finished. This dwelling was located on the lot on which W. F. White’s dwelling is located. Among the speakers were Dr. A. C. Baker, Wm. A. Grimshaw and Col. Wm. Ross. There was no music. A large crowd for that early day was present and the event was a most notable one.
The first animal show or circus that visited Barry was the VanAmburg wagon show, which exhibited in the public park in 1852 or 1853. In those days the shows stopped at the edge of town and formed for their parade, instead of the modern style, and on the occasion alluded to they came in from the east. A witness of the parade avers that fully five thousand people gathered from miles around to see the parade formed. One of the features of the show was the elephant named Hannibal, which so long attracted public attention in after years. Most of the leading shows have visited Barry since that date.
Twice in her history Barry made efforts to secure the county seat of Pike county. In 1842 or 1844 a proposition was made to divide the county, making our city the capital of the west half of the county. At that time Hon. Wm. Blair was a member of the house of representatives and he introduced the bill. A period of excitement followed. Petitions and remonstrances poured in on members of the legislature, and the bill was finally beaten. The effort was renewed in 1846, but again suffered defeat. In 1893 another movement was started looking to the removal of the county seat. When in that year the old courthouse was condemned, our citizens at once pledged themselves to donate to the county a $50,000 courthouse upon condition that the county seat would be changed to Barry. Petitions were liberally signed over the county, asking for an election, which was ordered to be held November 14, 1893. At this election Pittsfield was victorious. The campaign proved a most interesting one and the election was warmly contested. Defeat left no scars on our citizens.
The first physician of Barry was Dr. A. C. Baker, who came in 1837. He traversed the country for miles in each direction on horseback to attend to the needs of his patients. As soon as he could afford it he purchased a buggy, a very expensive thing in those days, and for twenty years he could boast of having the only vehicle of the kind in the region. Dr. Baker always occupied a prominent position in the community. He was for years the only physician.
About 1841 Dr. N. Cromwell located in Barry, and afterward came Dr. Barron, Dr. Adams, Dr. Johnson, Dr. S. C. Hatch, Dr. Gregory, Dr. Parker, Dr. Parish, Dr. Callaway, Dr. Long and others.
Alfred Grubb was the first justice of the peace, and he was afterward elected county judge. He and Joseph Klein were the attorneys-at-law. Afterward came E. D. Tingle, Thomas Stafford, A. C. Laing, J. L. Underwood and others. W. I. Klein is the only attorney here now.
The first regular lumber yard was established by Angle & Greene in 1867. Mr. Blair & Co. sold lumber in a small way some years before that.
The first livery stable was owned by Morris Hammond in 1850. After that Myron Sweet, Hollembeak & Jones and others went into the business. About 1869 Dan Lewton started a livery and bought two new open buggies. They were much sought by the young men of that day, and to secure them for a Sunday ride it was necessary to engage them two or three weeks ahead.
Chauncey Metcalf was the first wagon maker; I. G. Howe also worked at the business. In the blacksmith line old-timers were Mr. Woods, Yancy & Dabney, James Yancy, McConnell & Phenneger, Jackson Goodale, B. McConnell, J. S. Phenneger.
The early-day undertakes were Schuyler Gray, Burton Gray and Lewis Harvey, Smith & Bulger and Henry Hilderbrand, all of whom made the coffins used.
Tradesmen who did the early day building were Mr. Bridges (the first carpenter to arrive), Burton T. Gray, Schuyler gray, Lauriston Brown, Solomon Phenneger, Thomas McIntire, John Spencer, Wm. Rositer, D. D. Gray, Alex Liggett, John Piper, Mr. Terpine W. T. Mitchell, George W. Clark, J. L. Terry and George D. Mayes.
Plasterers – James Badgley, Wm. Ware, Wm. Eddingfield, John Booth, Ed Churchill, James B. Allen.
Stone Masons – S. C. Brown, Abiah Wright, John Higgins and Jas. Eagan.
Up to 1838 there had been few frame houses erected, not to exceed ten. The old Buckeye House, which so long stood on the west side of the park and was kept by Louis Harvey, was built in 1837, and was the first two-story building built here. It finally gave way to a more modern structure and to-day stands on a back lot and is used as a blacksmith shop.
Most of the surveying about Barry was done by A. G. Chamberlain, who took up the work in 1849. He secured his field notes from the land agency at Quincy. He replatted the several parks that were given over to residence purposes, and all the additions to Barry were platted by him. He is still with us in fairly good health.
Matthew W. McIntire, born August 18, 1837, son of Thomas McIntire, and still living, was the first white child born after the village was established. Ann Bradshaw, born in 1838, was the first girl baby.
The city of Barry to-day is a thriving and enterprising city of the smaller class. It has a population of about 2,000, and at the recent census was found to have made a greater gain than any other town in the county in the past decade. Located in the extreme eastern part of Barry township on an eminence, it is given a striking and handsome appearance. The city proper consists of fifty-one originally laid out blocks and ten parks, which were afterward by an act of the legislature sold for residence purposes. LaFayette park was the only one retained. Additions to the city have been added as follows: Angle’s subdivision, Walker’s addition, Brown’s second addition, Brown’s outlots, Hamilton’s addition, Pinger’s addition, Fitch’s addition, Moon’s addition, Greene’s sub-division and Booth’s sub-division.
The city has paved streets in the business center, a waterworks system fed by an artesian well 2,510 feet deep, an electric light system, a telephone exchange, a public library, a city building, a volunteer fire company, and other public enterprises. It has nine blocks of business houses mostly brick, three brick churches and many handsome and attractive residences. The business interests at present are as follows:
Banks – Exchange Bank of Barry, First National.
Dry Goods – L. F. Bright, Davis Bros., Haines, Rupert & Co.
Clothing, Etc. – J. B. & A. J. Chamberlin, J. Sessel & Co., W. H. Odiorne, Akers & McClain, C. W. Goodale.
Boots and Shoes – E. C. Hake.
Groceries – Wendorff & Co., Penny & Sun, G. D. Mayes & Son, C. A. Wyatt, W. H. Miller, Boyd & Thornton, M. E. Huffington.
Hardware – J. B. Watson, N. R. Davis.
Drugs – B. H. Rowand, D. K. Weiss.
Farm Implements, Etc. – W. F. White & Co., N. R. Davis, C. M. Holmes, J. I. Parker, Weber & Day.
Harness – L. S. Wagy, P. P. Johnson.
Jewelry – E. L. Penner, M. Hays & Co.
Stationery, Etc. – C. H. Ware, G. B. Orton.
Bakeries, Restaurants and Confectionery – G. H. Ellers, J. J. Robb, F. Stevens, J. A. Breeden, G. W. Mayberry.
Millinery – Mrs. Ray Lewis, Mrs. Ella Blades, S. Sessel.
Hotels – Blair, Mrs. S. B. Gaines, proprietor; and Doran, F. Conway, proprietor.
Butchers – S. Kirtright, Spann & Sons, J. H. Richardson.
Blacksmiths – B. McConnell, C. M. Holmes, J. S. Phenneger, Chas. Sederwall, Louis Barnett.
Marble Shop – T. A. Retallic & Co.
Lumber Yard 0 Jones Bros.
Livery – W. H. Stroheker, Arch Campbell, Dwire Bros.
Newspaper – Adage, A. E. Hess, publisher; Breeze, G. E. Davison, publisher.
Brick and Tile Yard – C. H. Chilton.
Dentists – Geo. B. McKinney, W. H. Wilson, F. G. Varney.
Physicians – John G. McKinney, R. H. Main, W. H. Johnson, T. D. Kaylor, C. E. Beavers, Mrs. Metta V. Collins.
Veterinary Surgeons – J. M. Kaylor, J. M. Doran.
Photographers – E. R. & E. L. Burnham, E. L. McClain.
Barbers – VanHoesen & Cunningham, Johnson & Raffety, McKee & Phebus, Harry McAtee.
Contractors – S. F. Furniss, Sid Carr, Clingingsmith & Conway.
Telephone Exchange – Weber & Ware.
Opera House – Ware & McNeal.
Commission Co. – Ogden-Christie Co.
Flour Mill, Elevators and Cooper Shop – Barry Milling Co.
Feed Mill – Weber & Day.
Real Estate, Loans and Insurance – J. E. Crawford, W. W. Watson, J. W. Mitchell, G. H. Wike, W. I. Klein.
R.R. Agent – Mort Smith.
Express Agent – C. H. Ware.
Tailor – W. J. Kraus.
Coal Dealers – Mill Co., E. L. Penner.
Broom Factory – Mitchell Bros.
Cigar Factory – W. B. Powell, Carl A. Berry.
Chinese Laundry – S. F. Joe.
Undertakers - Borthwick & Hazen.
Packing House – Hartford Provision Company.
Poultry – Morris & Co., W. A. Roddy.
Junk Dealer – W. A. Roddy.
Bus Line – M. Morey.
Drays – Theo. Doran, Thos. Fitzpatrick, Nate Hays.
Painters and Paper Hangers – O. R. Emerson, G. B. Orton, Dan Davis, J. B. Hall, Harry Grubb, Al Pape.
Carpenters – B. T. Gray, M. W. McIntire, W. H. Hall, John Early, S. B. Day, Ernest Glueck, Finley Hays, C. F. Richardson, Chas. Wells, M. Clingingsmith, N. M. Stevens, Ed Conway, Ed Darke.
Stone Masons – Theo. Sederwall, Hasting McDaniel, Joe VanCamp, Jay Emerson, Lon Emerson.
House Mover – Francis Woodward.
Cigar Makers – John Powell, Dan Dudley, Lorey Underwood, Grant Dudley, Paul A. Nobis, George Berry, Tom Berry
Coopers – C. C. Briggs, Ab Booth, J. R. Booth, Wm. Booth, Sam Bradney, Chas. Smith, Geo. Casterline.
Tinners – C. R. Hollembeak, E. W. Berry, Thos. O’Brien.
Harness Makers – J. W. Hudson, Thos. Fitzpatrick, Harry Ware.
Plasterers and Brick Layers – Ed Churchill, Joe VanCamp, Ed Abies, M. Shehan, Geo. Hooper.
Shoe makers - A. Wendorff, E. C. Hake, B. Weisenburger.
Printers – C. A. Hess, W. W. Seehorn, M. Widby, Berl Wike.
Business is on a solid foundation, and failures have been so few in years past that it is difficult to recall that any have occurred. The writer attributed this largely to the wisdom and foresight of the early residents and business men, of whom might be mentioned Montgomery Blair, B. D. Brown, Lewis Angle, Alfred Grubb, Calvin and Samuel Davis, Stephen R. Gray, John B. Chamberlin, Josiah Rowand, Edwin A. Crandall, Henry Wendorff, Eugene Smith, A. C. Hollembeak, and others – all strong and representative men in their day and generation.
Barry has never experienced a “boom.” Its growth has always been slow and steady, yet substantial. It has had its seasons of prosperity and adversity. For many years its principal draw-back was the absence of water, which was supposed to be almost impossible to obtain at a reasonable depth. Three separate attempts were made in early days to sink wells in the public park, and on one of these wells $500 was spent in a futile effort at securing water supply. In the recollection of the write the water hauler was an important personage in Barry. As many as a half-dozen were engaged in the business. Water was obtained at Hart’s spring, about a mile southwest of town and delivered in wagons to the citizens. In the very dry seasons the haulers were taxed to the utmost. All this was changed in 1879, when the city council had dug in the park an artesian well 2,510 feet deep, which supplies water for all city purposes. Later other wells were sunk at a depth of 60 to 80 feet and to-day there are many such wells and Barry is a well-watered city, thus exploding the old theory of a very dry place.
After the advent of the Hannibal & Naples railroad, now part of the main line of the Wabash railroad, in 1869, the city experienced probably more building and commercial activity than at any other period of its history. The north part of the town made a rapid stride. C. & S. Davis built their flour mill and packing house; L. Angle built his pork house; W. F. White & Bro. erected theirs, and the Angle & Greene lumber yard and planning mill was removed convenient to the railroad. It was about that time that Hamilton’s addition was platted. Chas. Pinger established a lumber yard and planning mill and a store there, and Kenning & Greene had their potter works there in the early 70’s, besides several dwellings.
On the morning of March 30, 1894, a calamity overtook the city, fire sweeping away fully one-half of the business houses and a few residences. The flames originated in the Hollembeak opera house after a dance and in less than two hours thirty-odd buildings were reduced to ashes. Not daunted by their misfortune, however, the citizens set to work rebuilding the devastated district and within a few months the last vestige of the conflagration had disappeared and new and handsome buildings adorned the places vacated for the most part by wooden structures.
From its primitive days to this date Barry has always been peopled with peace-loving, law-abiding citizens, whose thrift and enterprise are proverbial. Caste is now and always has been unknown here. Respectability was ever at a premium. The citizens for the most part own and occupy their own home and are happy and contented.
Our citizens have also always been loyal to their country and patriotic. Never were the inhabitants of Barry appeared to in vain when the nation or state was in peril. In the Black Hawk war Col. Barney, afterward a resident of our city, with others from our county, responded and did valiant service. Eight of our citizens: Alfred Blair, R. W. Howlett, B. T. Gray, Calvin Davis, N. P. Hart, Jack Jennings, John Arnett and Jacob Seybold participated in the war with Mexico. In the War of the Rebellion a whole company (Co. D of the 99th Ill) was composed of Barry’s sons, besides many others who joined other companies; and in the Spanish-American war several of our youth responded to their country’s call.
The railroad facilities of Barry are first-class. We have only one but it is a large and powerful corporation and gives an excellent train service. The Wabash, as now known, has been operated under several names from time to time. It is the off-spring of the first line of road projected in Illinois, then known as the Northern Cross railroad, extending from Danville to Quincy. It was chartered in 1837, and upon it the first locomotive was placed in the winter of 1838-29, running from Meredosia, on the Illinois river, to Jacksonville. In 1842 the road was completed from Jacksonville to Springfield, and three trips were made per week. The track was of the old flat rail style, which was made by nailing thin strips of iron on two parallel lines of timber placed at the proper distance apart, and running lengthways of the road. The engine and road became so impaired that the engine had to be abandoned and mules substituted as the motive power.
The Hannibal and Naples branch of the Wabash was completed in 1869, and Barry station was opened for business. The grading and trestles for this branch were done in 1858, but owing to financial complications the work was suspended. Finally, ten years later, new hands took charge of affairs and pushed the work to completion. Thos. T. Gray was the first agent and he held the office five years. The first depot was a poor building, and it was destroyed by fire. An office was located in the section house, and later the neat depot we now have was built. Barry is one of the most important stations on this branch.
Barry was incorporated as a town in 1856, as the result of an election that was held Jan. 24 of that year. Ninety-two votes were cast and all for the proposition. The new trustees selected were Jon Watson, Alfred Grubb, Dr. N. Cromwell, F. M. Dabney and C. S. Allen, who held their first meeting Jan. 31, 1856. Jon Watson was elected president, and Jon Shastid, clerk.
In 1872, Barry was organized as a city. The petition to change from a town to a city was filed by C. S. Allen, Jas. Holmes, A. C. Hollembeak, Lewis Angle and forty-six others, and as a result the election was ordered which took place Sept. 16, 1872. Little interest was taken and only sixty votes cast, none against the movement. The officers elected about that time were E. R. Burnham, mayor; J. R. Rowand, John Weber, N. R. Davis, Jas. S. Watson, Selah Moore and Mat Peterson, aldermen; C. C. Roasa, clerk; W. I. Klein, attorney; J. C. Brown, treasurer; John Whittleton, marshal; and J. F. Haines, street commissioner.
At this date (1903) the city administration consists of: W. W. Watson, mayor; M. T. Stauffer, L. G. McIntire, Jacob Tolson, W. A. Roddy, J. C. VanHoesen and W. H. Luster, aldermen; Ralph Smith, clerk; W. H. Stroheker, treasurer; W. I. Klein, attorney; J. W. Mitchell, police magistrate; John Winner, marshal.
Barry, Ill., Sept. 24, 1903