Friday, November 1, 2013

The Founding of the Homeplace Summer 1843, Progress Report Part 3 of 4

The Founding of the Homeplace
Summer 1843, Progress Report
Part 3 of 4

"The Founding of the Homeplace" stories will continue here on every other Friday during August and September. This is a serial presentation of the story, beginning in 1833, when four families decided to settle the land, the valley, that would become the setting of the first two books in the The Homeplace Saga: "Back to the Homeplace" and "The Homeplace Revisited" and subsequent series stories, set in 1987 and 1996, to date. The underlying premise of this series is the desire of the family matriarch to retain the family farm in the southern Missouri Ozarks in whole and in the family. 

Characters in this series become actively involved in the study of their family history and snippets of that research appear, from time to time through the series (one example). This serial presentation begins to share that ‘research’ in Story Form, and, some of the Stories represent 'writings of the family' that were ‘discovered’ in the process of that research. Each Story is an essay or report of the activities of the initial four families and their descendants that settled the Homeplace – the farm and the surrounding valley.

Summer 1843, Progress Report

In this episode, we share "Part 3 of 4"

During his travels out of the valley in connection with the County and Township formation discussions, two separate interests wanting to locate very different ‘businesses’ near the General Store had approached Jake Patton.  One was an individual by the name of Ace Donagan who had just sold his tavern operation in Eminence and offered to build a new one near Patton’s General Store if he could get a long-term lease. It would include four rooms for rent on a second floor for visitors and travelers passing through and provide limited meals along with drinks on the main floor.  The second interest group wanted a church or community building, south of the General Store, for community meetings when the weather was not good and for occasional church services when circuit riders came through town, which they continued to do on an irregular basis. Early in the fall of 1841, Jake and Kate Patton decided to meet each of these needs at the same time. They entered into a lease agreement with Donagan for a piece of land just north of the General Store for a tavern, facing west as well, with a second floor with four rental rooms upstairs and a kitchen and bar downstairs. They also arranged a building contract for Donagan. Before winter arrived, they also built a modest ‘meeting hall’ just to the south of the General Store, with community help and donations, to be made available for community activities.
Earlier in the year of 1843 it was learned that the country to the west, including the lumber camps, had been established as Ashley County. The increasing population along the road in that direction had continued to contribute to the development of improvements in that road.  Most of the new families in the valley had come along that road.

What had been a trail, along Oak Creek to the southeast, was now developing into a road as well, toward the county seat of Eminence. A road to the north was developing about a quarter of mile west of the mill, through the Baldridge place. A few farmers several miles to the north were bringing their grains through the woods to be milled here in the valley.

[ be continued... on Nov 15, 2013, with Part 4 of Summer 1843 Progress Report]

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