The August 23, 1925 issue of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat covered the counties of Southeast Missouri in its “Travelog” series of the state. Included in the article is a substantial article about Bollinger County and William Mayfield, who the Globe described as “the County’s leading citizen” and “after many hearbreaking experiences and tribulations finally succeeded in founding the Will Mayfield College there.”
The Globe, in its coverage of the counted also painted a picture of what it was like to live in the county during the Civil War.
Cletis Ellinghouse, wrote in his book “Old Wayne”:
“Southeast Missouri’s renowned and railroader, Louis Houck, in his memoirs noted Judge Jackson at the outbreak of the war raised the U.S. flag at the courthouse at Greenville, in defiance of popular sentiment, which strongly favored the Confederacy. It created what Houck called, “a local war.”
It may be significant to note that the Bollinger County Light Horse Cavalry was the first Confederate unit organized in this neighborhood, in mid-March of 1861, which was nearly a month before the South attacked Fort Sumter in South Carolina on April 12, 1861. It attracted a good number from Wayne [County] including Rufus and Christopher Holmes, respectively a sergeant and second lieutenant, sons of long-time Justice of the Peace John B. Holmes, as well as their cousins in Bollinger County, Joseph and Henry Bennett, privates, sons of Alexander Bennett and his first wife the former Debby Dennis , believed the eldest daughter of early settler John Dennis Sr.”
Glenn Dedmondt in his book “Flags of Civil War Missouri” writes:
“One unusual flag captured by the Freemont Rangers in the fall of 1861, the ensign of a company of the 1’st Cavalry Battalion of General M. Jeff Thompson’s 1’st Division, was made of black silk with a red cross on it.”
Apparently gold was discovered in Marble Hill, Missouri. The source of the news comes from the May 26, 1866 Charleston Daily News (Charleston, S.C.) and at the time Marble Hill was called “Dallas”.
According to the paper a rock which served as part of the foundation of a house that had been burned during the Civil War. The paper states that when the rock was ground up $60 worth of gold was refined from it. The paper also reported that the rock came from a local quarry just outside of town.
This is the first time this writer has ever heard of gold being discovered in the Southeast Missouri Ozark Foothills of Bollinger County, Missouri and as far as I know this was the only time gold was ever discovered here.