January 1880 - June 1880

January 1880 - June 1880

Home ] Statement Of Business,  March 1846 ] Recollection Of The Departed  --  In Memory of Catherine Woodruff Johns ] A Short History of My Life ]

The Journal of John Jay Johns ]

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...

July 1, 1879.
Now that Lizzie and her children are here we are all together once more.

July 17, 1879.
Lizzie and her children left for Sedalia.  A Scotchman by name of Monteith who has been a priest in the Catholic Church is at Reid's in the neighborhood.  He has renounced the Catholic faith and is seeking to enter the ministry in the Protestant Church.  Mrs. Behrens, an old citizen, died last night.

July 22, 1879.
Last night about three o'clock we had a heavy thunderstorm and the lightning struck an elm tree in my meadow very near to Mr. Gauss' stable and tore it from top to bottom; tore the bark off and set fire to Mr. Gauss' fence.

July 23, 1879.
My wife got a new Singer sewing machine from St. Louis.

July 27, 1879.  Sabbath.
Communion in our church today.  What a sweet privilege it is for Christian people to meet around the table of our Lord and celebrate His dying love.  The gracious Lord has provided these feasts to refresh his weary people in their journey Heavenward.

July 28, 1879.  Monday.
Arthur left for St. Louis this morning.  He starts tomorrow night on a trip to Kansas for his house, Alkire & Co., to be gone a month.  This is a new enterprise for him and his house.

July 29, 1879.
Old Mrs. Sheppard spent the day with us, 80 years old.

July 31, 1879.
this afternoon Mrs. Durfee, Mrs. Glenday, George and the two Shirleys went out to the country in a spring wagon.

Aug. 1, 1879.
My wife and I went out to Mrs. Watson's after supper.  What a lonely life, plenty of money, fine house, beautiful surroundings, but no one to live with her.

Aug. 3, 1879.  Sabbath.
Dr. Samuel Overall, an old doctor and citizen, died last night very suddenly of heart disease.  he has been a very successful doctor for 30 years and a prominent man in the community and a prominent member of the Methodist Church.

Aug. 4, 1879.
Received a letter from Arthur at Lawrence, Kansas.  Attended Dr. Samuel Overall's funeral this afternoon.  It was the largest funeral I ever saw in this place.

Aug. 7, 1879.
This is the day of the Walnut Grove picnic.

Aug. 8, 1879.
Rode up beyond Mallinchrodt's nursery in afternoon.

Aug. 9, 1879.
Went to see William Parks.

Aug. 14, 1879.
Mattie and Shirley Borden left this afternoon for Philadelphia.  They have been with us about seven weeks.  Mattie looks better and is in better health than for a long time past.  What a changing scene is human life.  We come and go, have pleasant times together for a time and then long separation.  joy and sorrow alternately come. Those we love most we see but seldom.  Oh! that we may all be so happy as finally to meet in that "Sweet Home" above when we shall part no more.

Aug. 15, 1879.
Mary Kuhlman (servant) left today.

Aug. 18, 1879.
Mr. Monteith, the former priest in the Catholic Church, is here today.

Aug. 20, 1879.
Mr. Francis Yosti, an old citizen upwards of 80 years old, of French and Italian extraction and who has lived most of his long life in this place and been a prominent and influential man, died yesterday evening.

Aug. 21, 1879.
Mr. Monteith, who recently left his priesthood in the Catholic Church, is sick at Mr. Alderson's.  His system seems to be very much shattered by his sufferings, mental and physical, inflicted on him by the Jesuits.

Aug. 22, 1879.
Attended Mr. Francis Yosti's funeral as pallbearer.  He was about 82 years old and two of the pallbearers, Colonel Thomas W. Cunningham and Dr. McIlnenny, the same age.

Aug. 23, 1879.  saturday.
Our yard looks as green and fresh as in Spring.  Arthur came this evening.  He has been travelling in southern Kansas.

Aug. 26, 1879.
Clear and cool in morning, heavy dews.  The late pastures will be fine.

Aug. 27, 1879.
Glover with the Military Company went to Dog Prairie to a picnic.

Aug. 28, 1879.
Glover and George went up to O'Fallon today to temperance picnic.

Aug. 29, 1879.
Ed Ferguson's funeral today.  Met Dr. Brookes of St. Louis Today on a visit to Lindenwood.

Aug. 31, 1879.  Sabbath.
Cloudy and warm.  George went over to the camp meeting in St. Louis County.  Mr. Martin preached a very able sermon today on the doctrine of election.

Sept. 7, 1879.
Old Mrs. Sheppard, 80 years old, fell down the stairs in church and bruised herself a good deal, but not seriously.

Sept. 8, 1879.
This afternoon George left for Princeton College, his senior year.  This evening I gathered about 3 pecks of white cling soft peaches to make marmalade.

Sept. 11, 1879.
Monteith, the converted Catholic priest, is still at Mr. Alderson's.  He suffers a great deal with his head.  I think he is honest and trying to do right.  Called on Mrs. Watson in afternoon.  She has a lonely life, every earthly comfort, but few enjoyments.  Called on old Mrs. Sheppard.  she is up and quite recovered from her fall.  Plenty of money but a discontented mind.

Sept. 13, 1879.
This is a year of great abundance in crops in this country, but all Europe is scarce of breadstuffs.

Sept. 14, 1879.
Mr. Monteith, the converted priest, told us today that he had changed his mind on the subject of baptism, believes that immersion is the scriptural mode and is determined to join the Baptist Church.  I believe he is honest, and a Christian, with some eccentricities of character.

Sept. 15, 1879.
Monteith left this morning for St. Louis.

Sept. 17, 1879.
Mrs. Durfee reset her strawberry bed.

Sept. 21, 1879.  Sabbath.
Arthur came up today from St. Louis in a buggy with Mr. Jerry Fisher, his room-mate.  He says St. Louis is quite overrun with business.

Sept. 23, 1979.
Rev. Rutherford Douglas is here on a visit.  He was raised here, but after studying theology, settled in Kentucky some years ago.

Sept. 24, 1879.
Met Rutherford Douglas today.  Looks very well, but little changed in 20 years, only stouter.  He gave us a fine lecture at prayer meeting tonight, on obedience to God's law as an evidence of our faith in Christ.

Sept. 25, 1879.
Went this morning with William Parks and Rev. Rutherford Douglas over to meeting of Presbytery in the Mizpah Church, in St. Louis County.  Spent a delightful day with the Brethren and heard one of the grandest sermons I ever heard from Rev. Thomas Watson of Dardenne, on the text, Titus II, 11, 12, 13, "The grace of God that brings salvation".  We returned home in the evening.

Sept. 26, 1879.
Called with Rutherford Douglas on Mrs. Watson.  Got bbl. of sugar from St. Louis.

Sept. 27, 1879.
Spent the evening and took Tea at Col. Cunningham's with Rutherford Douglas.  Glover went to St. Louis in morning to the Exposition.

Sept. 28, 1879.  Sabbath.
Rutherford Douglas preached for us today.  It was a very good sermon delivered with great earnestness and force, "Whosoever will be my disciple must take up his cross and follow me".  The great duty of the Christian of self-denial and cross-bearing.

Sept. 29, 1879.
Rutherford Douglas dined with us.

Oct. 1, 1879.
Fred and Dr. Johnson commenced their partnership in the practice of medicine today in Dr. Overall's old office.

Oct. 6, 1879.
Called on a Mr. Lemon and wife, strangers.  He is working at car shops.  Have seen them at church occasionally.  He was raised a Presbyterian in Pennsylvania and she in Montgomery County, this state.  Were married by Reverend Thomas C. Smith, High Hill.  Strangers need attention from christian people.  Also called on Mrs. Rufus Robbins to urge her to come to church and send her children to Sunday School.

Oct. 7, 1879.
Fred and Glover went to St. Louis in Buggy in the afternoon to witness the grand exhibition of the Veiled Prophet.

Oct. 8, 1879.
Went to St. Louis Fair today.  Henry Gauss came in last night.

Oct. 9, 1879.
It is the healthiest summer and fall for 40 years.  I expect to leave for Sedalia tomorrow and from there next week to Synod at Boonville.

Oct. 22, 1879.
Returned from Boonville where Synod met, last night.  The excessive hot weather continued up to 16th this month, the day on which Synod met; I spent from Friday till the next Thursday in Sedalia at my son-in-law's Henry Gauss.  Lizzie has a fine baby three weeks old.  Sedalia is a railroad town.  It has poor streets and plank pavements, the want of rock and brick to make better.  Boonville is a beautiful town, well-built, fine streets and fine heights around it.  We had a full Synod, very harmonious, delightful Christian intercourse, glorious preaching and large audiences.

Oct. 23, 1879.
Our young dog Sano has disappeared.  I am afraid he is stolen.

Oct. 25, 1879.
There was a balloon ascension in town today by Nel Brayton.  It was a very large balloon, started about 12:30 o'clock and went over toward the north and up very high.  The town was crowded with people.

Oct. 26, 1879.
My wife and Shirley after an absence of seven weeks at Sedalia returned last night to the great joy of us all.

Oct. 27, 1879.
Got about 20 bushels of Jenniton apples.

Oct. 30, 1879.
Glover and others went to Perugue fishing today.

Nov. 2, 1879 Sabbath.
Allie Watson died last night of consumption.

Nov. 9, 1879.   Sabbath.
Arthur came last night.  About 8:30 o'clock last night a terrible calamity befell our bridge.  One whole span in the middle of it gave away with a train of 18 cars loaded with cattle and hogs on it.  They all fell into the stream below, a distance of 80 feet.  Seven men went down with it; four were killed, two seriously injured and one escaped.  The engine and two cars had passed on the next span and escaped with the engineer and conductor.  This is a great calamity in the loss of life as well as the pecuniary loss to the company of four or five hundred dollars, besides the interruption of business and travel.

Nov. 10, 1879.   Monday.
Arthur went to St. Louis this morning.  They have to cross the river on the ferry-boat and take the cars on the other side as they did before the bridge was built.

Nov. 11, 1879.
The bridge is the all absorbing topic of conversation.  The almost universal feeling is a want of faith in the bridge as constructed, that the remainder will fall too.  Another of the injured men died today.

Nov. 15, 1879.
This afternoon my wife, Shirley and I rode out to Mrs. Watson's, J. H. Alexander's and down to see the fallen bridge.  A steamboat, several barges and a great many men are at work on the wreck.

Nov. 19, 1879.
Called at Mr. Robert Parks this afternoon.  Strong west wind blowing.  Wind blew so strong that at prayer meeting the room got so full of smoke and gas that Mr. Martin had to dismiss the meeting.

Nov. 21, 1879.
Our millers and wheat merchants shipping by boat to St. Louis.

Nov. 23, 1879,   Sabbath.
Susie Walton Buried today.

Nov. 26, 1879.
Saw Judge Bucknew, our Congressman, today on his way to Washington.  He thinks the prospects of the Democrats net very good.  The Republican administration claims the credit of the returning prosperity of the country.  Southern Democrats have been saying and doing some imprudent things.  A "Solid South" is unpopular at the North.  He says Tilden is on the shelf, too old and feeble.  Thinks Grant will get 2 or 3 Southern States if he runs, Florida and South and North Carolina.

Nov. 27, 1879.   Thanksgiving Day.
Fannie Alderson and Dr. Durell married this evening.

Nov. 30, 1879, Sabbath.
Very Fine day.  Fred and Annie took dinner with us and Fred went to St. Louis to see Cely's son Henry who is very sick.

Dec. 7, 1879,  Sabbath.
Children's Missionary meeting in afternoon and Mr. Martin went to the Prairie to preach.

Dec. 9, 1879.
The new wooden span (temporary) was completed today and trains commenced crossing today.  I think it a great risk.  They propose to make some changes for safety, the floor is to be stronger, so that cars can't jump the track, and the cast iron cords to be changed for wrought iron.

Dec. 11, 1879.
Killed my hogs today (3) only bout 9 months old and weigh about 200 lbs.

Dec. 13, 1879.
Called with my wife on the Whitneys and Edwards in their new home.  Mrs. William Whitney from Mexico, Mo., is there.

Dec. 17, 1879.
Glover went to Warrenton to attend court as witness.

Dec. 18, 1879.
Mr. Martin dined with us today.  Glover returned at night from Warrenton.

Dec. 20, 1879.
Our town full of wagons, and people today preparing for Christmas.  The stores are full of Christmas toys. How many children will be made happy for a little while on Christmas by these toys!  It sweetens domestic life.  The toy business has grown wonderfully in a few years.   It is a source of money-making and pleasure-giving.  It gives employment to many poor people.  When I was a boy, toys were rare things.  Now they abound.

Dec. 24, 1879.
Arthur came tonight.  He sent us a box of good things, - oranges, candies, nuts.  What joyful excitement in cities, towns and country by parents and children over Christmas.  How many happy family gatherings there will be tomorrow.

Dec. 25, 1879.
Christmas Day.  Though incorrectly celebrated as the birthday of our Saviour (of which we know nothing) yet the event is nevertheless the most glorious in the world's history.  Jesus, the Saviour of Sinners, the God-man, once the Infant in a manger.  The most earnest prayer of my heart is that my wife and children and myself may be united to this precious Saviour.  We had a delightful, most delightful time today, a family dinner.  Fred and Annie and Arthur were with us.  All gave and received pleasure by Christmas gifts from one to the other.  Though not very costly, yet they sweeten life as tokens of love.  Shirley was too happy, he got so many little gifts.  How sweet is domestic life where love and concord dwell.  The man who has a good wife and so many good children as I have is blessed indeed.

Dec. 27, 1879.
Mrs. Durfee received a beautiful picture of Anne D. Gauss in a beautiful frame from Sedalia.

Dec. 31, 1879.
It is now past 9 o'clock and the old year 1879 is nearly gone.  Time is measured by seasons and man's journey from infancy to old age.  Eternity will have no measure, one eternal present of joy or sorrow.


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 16:36:02 MST