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Biographical Material
The Black Book
John Jay Johns Journal
Notes on Families:
Orrick Johns
Pen of John Jay Johns
Pioneer Families of MO
St. Charles, MO
Tax Records

Carl Friedrich Gauss Page
Wilhelm Ahrens Speech
Scan of Letter from Gauss
G. Waldo Dunnington Article

Chambless, Sanderson, Simmons

Disclaimer:The opinions on these pages are those of the writers and don't necessarily reflect my own views. More...


Apr. 8, 1876 Saturday.
This has been a fine spring-like day.  Old Aunt Patsy rakes up and carried off a great many leaves from the yard.  Expect Arthur up this evening.  Heard from my daughter, Mary, that Mrs. Ben Pearce died at Neosho this week.

Apr. 9, 1876. Sabbath.
Captain John Shaw's dwelling house burned last night about ten o'clock.

Apr. 11, 1876.
I sowed about 1/2 gal. of Silesian oats in lower part of orchard.  They were sent to me by Judge Buckner from Washington.

Apr. 14, 1876.
Presbytery of St. Louis met in our church today.  Rev. Dr. Brank and Rev. T. C. Smith are stopping with us.

Apr. 15, 1876.
Presbytery is large and meeting very interesting.

Apr. 16, 1876, Sabbath.
Rev. Dr. Farris, our old pastor, preached for us this morning.  Communion in morning.  A blessed and high day for us.  Bright and cool in afternoon.

Apr. 17, 1876.
Presbytery still in session.

Apr. 18, 1876.
Presbytery adjourned last night at 10 o'clock.  Samuel Watson, son of Rev. Thomas Watson of Dardenne, was licensed to preach.  He is a very promising young man.

Apr. 22, 1876.
I went to the country today.  The wheat crops look good.  The Mississippi River is spread out over the prairie to the railroad above the Elm Point.

Apr. 30, 1876.
Minnie Strother and her husband, Mr. Goss, are here on the way to Fort Smith, Ark.

May 17, 1876.
My daughter Mattie returned from Philadelphia today after an absence of 20 months.

May 18, 1876.
Mrs. Orrick, formerly Mrs. Rhodes was buried today.

May 22, 1876.
Annie left this morning for Boonville.  We are delighted with her.  She is a lovely woman and Fred has been singularly fortunate in getting such a wife.

May 27, 1876.
I went to Mrs. Durfee's farm today.

June 4, 1876, Sabbath.
Rev. Samuel B. Alderson preached for us today.

June 9, 1876.
Mrs. Durfee started this morning for Sedalia.  Ellen Cowen came.

June 10, 1876.
Attended as pallbearer at Mrs. Otey's funeral.

June 20, 1876.
I went to the country this afternoon.  One of my tenants (Cruse) finished harvesting Friday (16th) of last week, and the other (Raker) yesterday, Monday the 19th.  The wheat is very fine.  They are plowing corn the third time.  It looks fine.  Mrs. Durfee's tenant commenced harvesting yesterday, and will be at it for nearly a week.

June 25, 1876.
Rev. W. W. Hall of Fulton preached in our church on a particular Providence.  What a precious doctrine.

June 28, 1876.
Today I went to attend the Democratic National Convention. St. Louis is literally crowded with strangers.  Tremendous excitement.  Tilden and anti-Tilden New Yorkers.  The Exchange Hall, where the convention meets, is a grand affair. They adopted the platform in afternoon while I was in.  Later Tilden was nominated on second ballot.  It is estimated that there are 30,000 people (strangers) in St. Louis.

July 2, 1876.
George Gaty, an old citizen, died yesterday.

July 4, 1876.
This is the 100th year of our nation's independence.  It will be celebrated all over the land with great demonstrations.  The streets of town are decorated with flags and branches of trees and banners.  Grand procession.  Mrs. Nannie Lee, my niece from Clarksville, Texas, is with us now.

July 8, 1876.
My niece, Mrs. Nannie Lee, after spending a week with us, left this evening for Baltimore.

July 14, 1876.
Mrs. John Pourie was buried day before yesterday.

July 23, 1876.
During the night it got very cold and today is cold enough for fire.  I wore an overcoat to church.  Today Miss Ann Williams, an old maid, over 80 years old, and long resident in this town, died.

Aug. 3, 1876.
Mrs. Durfee returned last night from Sedalia and Boonville.

Aug. 7 1876.
George returned today on the steamer "Belle of St. Louis" from Boonville.

Aug. 25, 1876.
Went to Wentzville to attend Democratic county meeting to appoint delegates to convention to meet in St. Louis on the 4th September to nominate candidates for the judgeships of Court of Appeals.  Our delegates instructed to vote for H. A. Cunningham of this county.

Aug. 30, 1876.
Miss Ada Pearce came this morning from St. Louis.

Aug. 31, 1876.
Arthur goes back to St. Louis to board today.

Sept. 1, 1876.
Glover and George left this morning for Philadelphia.  They will spend a week at the Centennial and then George goes to Princeton College and Glover returns home.

Sept. 9, 1876.
Had a picnic for the Sunday School children in Dr. Bruere's grove this afternoon.

Sept. 17, 1876.  Sabbath.
Clear, cool, pleasant.  Arthur came up last night from St. Louis.  He looks well.  Glover returned from Philadelphia Saturday by way of Niagara.  He was greatly delighted with the Centennial.

Sept. 18, 1876.
Glover went down to his school today.  I went with him.  The farmers are busy preparing to sow wheat.

Sept. 19, 1876.
Miss Jennie Hudson came in evening and spent the night.  We received a letter from George at Princeton saying he had passed the examination and entered the Freshman class.

Sept. 22, 1876.
W. A. Holliday of St. Louis to dinner.

Sept. 28, 1876.
This is Mr. and Mrs. S. S. Watson's Golden Wedding and we all went to it.  Mrs. Durfee, James Lindsay and Mrs. Frances Yosti were at the wedding fifty years ago.

Oct. 3, 1876.
Got Mr. Morton's horse and buggy to keep till his return from East.  Attended Mrs. Daugherty's funeral today.  Have known her for 30 years.

Oct. 5, 1876.
Went up to Wentzville yesterday to see Mr. Ben Pearce.

Oct. 9, 1876.
Mr. Martin left for Virginia this morning after Mrs. Martin.

Oct. 16, 1876.
Left home on 11th October for meeting of Synod at Fulton.  Had a delightful trip.  Saw a good many old friends.  Returned today.  The subject of great interest was Westminster College, there being a debt on it of $11,000.00 which greatly cripples it.  It is very flourishing otherwise, 115 students present now.

Oct. 19, 1876.
The papers today say that war between Russia and Turkey has commenced.  This will and has had the effect of raising the price of grain in this country.

Oct. 22, 1876.  Sabbath.
Reverend Mr. Shotwell preached for us today, good, sound preacher.

Oct. 27, 1876.
Yesterday I went over to Mispah Church in St. Louis County for an adjourned meeting of Presbytery.  Weather delightful.  The object of the meeting was to ordain and install Mr. Grover over that church and to attend to the case of Dr. Brookes and the walnut Street Church.

Oct. 31, 1876.
Went to St. Louis to attend meeting of committees of the two Synods on co-operation in support of Westminster College.  Took dinner with Dr. Farris.

Nov. 2, 1876.
Last night my daughter Lizzie Gauss came very unexpectedly from Sedalia.

Nov. 3, 1876.
Mrs. Maggie Borden and son arrived last night from Philadelphia.  The children are having a jolly time together with a donkey.

Nov. 4, 1876.
Yesterday the Democrats had a grand time and last night they had the largest torch-light procession ever known in town.  Weather fine.  Hockaday, Kern, Broadhead and Brockmeyer made speeches.  Great enthusiasm.

Nov. 5, 1876, Sabbath.
Mr. Martin returned from Virginia Friday and preached today.

Nov. 7, 1876.
This is one of the great days in this country, which comes every four years, the election of President of United States.  Great excitement through the whole land.  Tilden and Hendricks, Democratic nominees.  Cool, fine day.  Glover bought a black mare today of the Gipsies at $35.

Nov. 8, 1876.
The probability is that Tilden is elected President.

Nov. 12, 1876.  Sabbath.
Warm.  Arthur came from St. Louis last night.  The country is in awful suspense about the Presidential election.  Tilden only lacks one vote and Louisiana, Florida and South Carolina uncertain.  The Democrats claim each of them but as they are under the control of Republican governors they fear foul play.

Nov. 16, 1876.
Nothing settled about the Presidential election yet.

Nov. 24, 1876.
Yesterday I went to St. Louis to attend a convention of elders in Dr. Brank's Church (Central).  Read an essay on the Nature and Duties of the Eldership.  Returned this evening.  Cloudy and drizzling.

Nov. 26, 1876.  Sabbath.
Cloudy and damp.  My brother-in-law, Mr. E. P. Borden of Philadelphia, came last night.  Arthur came.

Nov. 27, 1876.
Mr. Borden went to the city today.

Nov. 29, 1876.
The Bordens left yesterday for Philadelphia.  Fine day, cool.

Nov. 30, 1876.  Thanksgiving Day.
Though it is not so appropriate as a day of fasting would be in view of the unhappy condition of the country.

Dec. 1, 1876.
Mercury nearly down to zero this morning.  Glover went down to his school.  The Presidential election is still undecided.  The radical politicians have the control of Florida, Louisiana and South Carolina, and are managing so as to throw out votes enough to give them to Hayes.  It is a sad state of things in this country.  The executive of the nation is using the military to control the elections in those unhappy states.  Tilden is certainly elected by 300,000 as well as by the electoral vote.

Dec. 7, 1876.
Miss Jennie Hudson and Belle Martin spent evening with us.  Yesterday was the day when all the electors met in the states and cast their votes for President and Vice-President.  The three states of Louisiana, Florida and South Carolina cast their votes for Hayes, when it is certain that the Tilden electors were elected by from 5,000 to 7,000 majority.  This was accomplished by fraud on the part of their radical, carpet-bag canvassing boards.  The news from Oregon is that the governor has given a certificate to a Tilden elector which will elect Tilden.  We are passing through a fearful crisis as a nation.

Dec. 10, 1876.  Sabbath.
Yesterday was Mr. J. H. Alexander's silver wedding and we had a very delightful party at his house last night.

Dec. 21, 1876.
Henry Gauss came last night.

Dec. 25, 1876.
Another Christmas Day, cloudy, not very cold.  A light snow on the ground.  We are having a very marry time.  So many of the children with us.  We had a happy time over the Christmas gifts this morning.  Everybody got presents.  These family reunions on these occasions are very pleasant and these gifts, no matter how little, of affection very gratifying.  As people get older their happiness is very much bound up in their children and grandchildren.  Our children give us a great deal of comfort and the great desire of our hearts is that they be christians.  Some of them are absent today, but they are fondly remembered by us.  What a blessed thing in this world of sin and sorrow is a Christian family, - where the influences of religion pervade and control the sympathies and affections of our nature.  George is at Princeton College and Fred is at Boonville, Mo. Louisa is at Carrollton, Mo., and Mary at Windsor, Henry County, Mo.  Four absent and six here with us, and three are in the Father's House.

Dec. 27, 1876.
Henry Gauss and Lizzie and children dined with us today and expect to leave tomorrow morning for their home in Sedalia.  The excitement about the Presidential election still continues, though the indications are more favorable for Tilden's inauguration.

Dec. 28, 1876.
Henry Gauss and family and Mattie Johns and Virginia Gauss left this morning for Sedalia.

Dec. 31, 1876.
This is the last day and the last Sabbath of 1876.  The Centennial year of American Independence.  During the past year, as a family, we have been greatly blessed with health as a general thing, while the Lord in his mysterious providence took our dear Annie from earth to Heaven as we humbly hope.  I pray that the Lord may sanctify to us, not only our afflictions, but our blessing.


Source: Location of handwritten original unknown.  Transcription and excerption by Florence Johns in 1960s.  Transcribed to softcopy by Susan D. Chambless, 1999.

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Last modified:Sunday, 09-Nov-2003 16:35:52 MST