Grundy County, Missouri – Brief History

State of Missouri with Grundy County highlighted.Brief History of Grundy County, Missouri

~ as it applies to Coffman/Livingston & Hansman research

16 Nov 1820
Until that date, the territory now embraced by Grundy County formed a part of Howard County.3
2 Jan 1833 After 16 Nov 1820, Grundy became a part of Ray County until this date when it was attached to the newly organized Carroll County.3
1833 The first settlers in Grundy County were General W.P. Thompson and his family.1
1834 Levi Moore and his family arrived and the area soon became known as “Moore’s Settlement”.1
The settlement became known as “the Bluffs” and in 1908 was called Lomax’s Store.5, p.20
Winter, 1835-1836 The first school on record in the county was taught by Miss Louisa Berry in Madison township in the winter of 1835 & 1836. It was located about a mile north of what is now Edinburg. The first schools were usually taught in private houses.5, p.143Birdsall & Dean states that the first school ever taught in the county was in 1838 by an Englishman named Moore. The house was a rough log cabin on the present site [1881] of the old cemetery.6, p. 379
6 Apr 1837 The first wedding in Madison township and is also believed to be the first in Grundy County was between Milton L. Moore and Miss Louisa Perry, daughter of George Perry.6, p. 559
1838/39 Wilson township was settled in this general time frame. The majority of the settlers in that area came from Kentucky.2In 1838 the first store opened nearby in what was then called Lomax.1
1839/40 Grundy County first consisted of Sugar Creek and Muddy Creek Townships under the jurisdiction of the Livingston County Court, and while under that jurisdiction seven townships were established in 1839-40. They were Washington, Jefferson, Madison, Franklin, Morgan, Marion and Lafayette.3
3 Jan 1841 The first marriage of record in the county: This is to certify that on the third day of January last, I did join John B. Howard and Rebecca Williams in the marriage covenant. Given under my hand this 27th day of march, in the year of our Lord, 1841. ~ Signed by Thomas Thompson, P.G.6, p. 156
29 Jan 1841 Organized from Livingston County and named for Felix Grundy, Tennessee senator and United States attorney general under President Jackson. Grundy died almost exactly a year before the county honored his name.3
18 Mar 1841 The First Deed of Record in the county was between George Perry and wife Jane and Milton L. Moore for 80 acres of land. Total paid was $100. The Justice of the Peace was William Renfro.5, pp. 53-55 or 6 p. 201
Apr 1841 The first court was held in a log house in Trenton (known then as Lomax store). Judge James A. Clarke of Monticello, Chariton county presided. The judicial court at that time was composed of Chariton, Ray, Daviess, Livingston, Macon, Inn, and Grundy counties.6, p. 378
18 Apr 1841 The first court met this date. As the county was too young to have many civil and criminal cases, the first cases involved betting and card playing on Sunday.3
19 Jun 1841 By this date, four more townships were organized. They were Monticello, Clark, Scott and Trenton.3
1842/45 Eleven townships existed during these years. In 1845, Mercer County was organized and the number of townships in Grundy County reduced to the old number of seven — but not the same seven. The townships now stood: Washington, Franklin, Liberty, Marion, Trenton, Jefferson and Madison, the five townships of Monticello, Clark, Morgan, Lafayette and Scott disappearing completely and Liberty appearing.3
1851 The first newspaper published in the county was the Trenton Pioneer. David T. Wright was its founder.5, p.157
By 1857 Lomax was known as Trenton.1 And Trenton was also known as Bluff Grove.3
20 Oct 1861
to March 1862
Grundy County Battalion State Militia Infantry was organized at Trenton, Grundy County, for six months October 20, 1861. Scouting and duty at Chillicothe Mo., until March, 1862. Mustered out March 4, 1862.4
1881 The development of the county was aided by the coming of Quincy, Missouri & Pacific railway. The city of Galt was founded because of the railway.5, p.92
26 Jun 1881 The first marriage license issued to Wm. A. Brock and Sarah F. Atkinson. Actually issued on a Sunday which was the first day the law for such went into effect in the state. A second license was also issued the same day to Wm. C. Urton and Maggie A. Events. The marriage license law was the first license law in the state. The licenses were issued from the recorder’s office of Grundy County.6, p.251
1883 A severe storm in Grundy county unroofed or destroyed a number of houses as well as doing much damage to orchards. The approximate loss for Trenton was $75,000.5, p.92
1887 Another railway, Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul, came to the county. The railway ‘made’ the town of Laredo but ‘killed’ the village of Alpha.5, p.92, 94
20 Apr 1880 That Sunday a violent rain and hail storm went through the northern part of the county. Window glass was broken in the townships of Taylor, Harrison and Washington. Half Rock Church in Washington township was moved off its foundations. Cattle in Washington and Taylor townships were severe injured. The hail stones were various sizes. Some smooth stones measured five and a half inches in circumference; the rough stones were even larger.6, p.249
4 Jul 1909 That evening a ‘remarkably heavy rain’ began which extended from the central to the western part of North Missouri and Southern Iowa. Before the storm ended, that part of the state suffered its worst flood in history. The next evening a ‘sudden and tremendous downpour’ caused all the streams to rise rapidly overflowing their banks. All crops on the river and creek bottoms were ruined. Miles of fencing were gone. Stock worth thousands of dollars was destroyed. The water rose so rapidly, owners had little or no chance to save property. Some people had to climb trees and wait for 24 hours for rescue.5, p.861


List of places in Grundy County that are on the National Register of Historic Places.