July 1, 1885 - September 30, 1885

July 1, 1885 - September 30, 1885

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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. 3, 1885.
Some war in Central America led by Barrios, a rebellion in British America. The French War in China causing great excitement in France -- change of ministry. A threatened war between Russia and England in Afghanistan and the English war in Egypt. Shirley had easter egg party today, the Parks, Martin children, Ed Irwin's and Rob Bruere.

Apr. 5, 1885. Sabbath.
This is called Easter Sunday. Though there is no Bible authority for its observance, yet is strictly observed by all Catholics and Episcopalians. It certainly celebrates a glorious event, the resurrection of our Savior on which rests our whole christian system.

Apr. 8, 1885.
Postal from Mary Pearce saying she expects to come down with Mary Morgan tomorrow. Eleanor came out. Called at Mrs. Frayser's this afternoon.

Apr. 10, 1885.
A postal from John Pearce saying his mother was sick and could not come. Settled with August Cruse for last year rent today. In afternoon rode with Robt Pourie out to Garvin's and then to Mrs. Durfee's farm and by John Lindsay's the wheat on Mrs. Durfee's farm - lower field is about half a stand and in spots. Talk of war between England and Russia. Grain up.

Apr. 12, 1885.
Attended the funeral of old Mrs. Allen, Jimmy Stewart's mother-in-law.

Apr. 16, 1885.
Went up to Troy Tuesday to Presbytery and returned today. The meeting of Presbytery was not full, Farris and Watson absent. We had a very pleasant meeting and dispatched business very rapidly. Troy has improved since the railroad was built. The church there has prospered under the ministry of Mr. Fansteal. I stayed at the LaClede Hotel with Mr. Campbell of Dardenne. Mr. Buswell is the Proprietor and keeps a good house, his wife is a pleasant lady. Reverend T. C. Barnet and his elder, Mr. Edmonds, stopped and took dinner with me.

Apr. 18, 1885.
Received letters from Arthur, Mattie and Minnie. Saw a fire extinguisher tried downtown today. A big fire was started in full blaze and was put out instantly by it.

Apr. 21, 1885.
Mrs. Custer and Mattie Watkins called in afternoon. Laura Watkins was married yesterday to Captain Ball. Old John commenced making fence behind the stable.

Apr. 23, 1885.
Mells Kersman ran the line between Mr. Gauss and me. I wrote to Drs. Quarles and Charles about a situation for Eleanor Martin as Art Teacher. Mary Pearce, Kate and Mary Morgan came down this morning. Mary has been sick for the last two months. I called in Dr. Johnson this evening to see her, she is very weak, no appetite.

Apr. 24, 1885.
Received a letter from my old friend Niles Saunders of Kentucky today. He speaks in the highest terms of Reverend Mr. Tate as a preacher and pastor. Old John finished the fence around the stable. Called on Mrs. Waters and Charlesworth.

Apr. 26, 1885. Sabbath.
George and Minnie came on early train, look well, they seem delighted with their housekeeping. Sank killed a big cat last night. Reverend Mr. Baldsin preached for us today.

Apr. 27, 1885.
Put a new plank cover on shed over cistern. John commenced fence between Mr. Gauss and me.

Apr. 29, 1885.
Old John finished the back fence between Mr. Gauss and me. The Lindell Hotel in St. Louis was injured by fire last night. The war cloud darkens between England and Russia. I still have my neuralgia and my wife is a good deal troubled with rheumatism, Eleanor M. came in afternoon.

May 1, 1885.
Met Bro. Wm Parks today, he will preach for us Sunday Deus Vohn. He proposed that we invite ReverandMr. Beale of Potosi Presbytery to preach for us Sunday week. Mary and the children returned home this evening. She has wonderfully improved in health since she came down.

May 7, 1885.
Went to St. Louis early Tuesday (5th) as grand juror in the U. S. District Court, stayed all night with George and Minnie that night. They have a good house, comfortably furnished and pleasantly situated on Compton Avenue. Wednesday morning called at Dr. Joe Moon's massage establishment on Olive Street. Stayed with my old friend Dr. Farris last night. He and his wife are alone. Dr. Dick Farris is practicing medicine in Illinois, Daisy is there visiting and Ed is in Boonville. My wife, Mrs. Glenday and Shirley went to St. Louis this morning and I met them at noon at Mrs. Deneny's (Milliner). They expect to stay tonight with George. Came home on early train, after supper went to the parsonage to see Mr. Taylor Martin who came last night. He will remain and preach for us Sunday. I have to return to St. Louis in the morning.

May 10, 1885. Sabbath.
Reverend S. Taylor Martin preached for us morning and evening. He is a very fine preacher. In the morning his text was "Cast the burden on the Lord and he will sustain thee" a most comforting sermon to christian and at night "If ye believe not Moses and the Prophets, neither will ye believe the one rose from the deat. It isn't the want of evidence, but the want of inclinatioin that leads men to reject Christ". Rev. Taylor Martin, Douglas, Eleanor and Daisy came to tea.

May 15, 1885.
I called at Robert Parks' in afternoon. Sold some books of Mr. Martin's to McCluer and his sister, Mrs. McCarty.

May 16, 1885.
Called on Reverend Mr. Boale at Wm Parks. Called with him on Taylor Martin at the Parsonage. Martin has concluded to remain another week so as to be in St. Louis tomorrow (Sunday) week. Mr. Boale took dinner with us. Shirley went with a fishing party. Parker and Garvin, to Lake on Prairie.

May 19, 1885.
Attended a religioos meeting at Mrs. Watson's at night, a consecration of the new house to God.

May 22, 1885.
The Reverend Mr. Tate of Kentucky came this morning, I called on him at Mr. Alexander's, in afternoon and rode with him around town. He is a pleasant man, He preached last night, his manner is poor but sermon good. We had a letter from Lizzie and Mary today.

May 24, 1885. Sabbath.
We had communion in our church today. Eight girls from 12 to 16 years old joined our church today. They all belong to the families of the church and all belong to Eleanor Martin's Sunday School class. Mr. Tate preached a very fine sermon. Attended Mrs. Franzs' funeral in afternoon.

May 25, 1885.
Mr. Tate stayed with us all night. I feel drawn to him as a warm-hearted, earnest consecrated man. I made several calls with him today. He leaves tonight for his uncle's in Callaway County, Col. Isaac Tate's.

May 28, 1885.
We called at the Parsonage after Tea. Eleanor has some very pretty paintings of her own for the Art Exhibition at Lindenwood. Letter from Mary saying the wheat is nearly all dead, that is generally the case -- such a failure of wheat was never known before in this country.

May 30, 1885.
Went out with my wife and Mrs. Glenday to the Art Exhibition at Lindenwood, some fine pictures. Eleanor Martin has done some fine work in drawing and painting. WE went to Lindenwood again this evening to the Art Exhibition and an entertainment of the Junior Class, a burlesque of the senior class. Met George and Minnie there, quite a large crowd.

May 31, 1885. Sabbath.
We had no preaching in our church today. The Baccalaureate sermon by Dr. Irwin is to be preached today in the Jefferson Street Church. George and Minnie took dinner with us and tea, too. I went over to McDearmon's in evening. Heard Reverend Joe Pritchett in the Methodist Chruch at night.

June 2, 1885.
Attended the funeral of old Mrs. Isaac Moore in afternoon. Eleanor Martin came and took tea with us. Attended one of the Lindenwood meetings at the church tonight to hear the address of Reverend George Martin of St. Louis on the origin and development of free thought -- on the subject of religion, science and civil liberty -- Rennaisance.

June 3, 1885.
Lindenwood commencement, great crowd and many from St. Louis -- 13 graduates.

June 4, 1885.
Attended an exhibition of the St. Charles College students at the opera house last night. The boys did very well. Secretary Bayard was in St. Louis yesterday on his way to Columbia State University commencement and thence to Kansas. Shirley and I expect to go to Wentzville today.

June 5, 1885.
Went up to Wentzville yesterday. Found Mary's family all well. She still complains a good deal. Their crops are bad but Tom has managed it miserably, oats look well. I am greatly discouraged about them. They have so little thrift and management. Saw Dr. Brooks and Mr. Bridal on train returning from Fulton in the interest of Westminster College. Elected Mr. Findley professor of Moral Philosophy.

June 9, 1885.
Received a letter from Lizzie today. Mary and Bonnie were there on a visit to Percy. Mrs. Orrick called this afternoon. I attended the wedding of Bettie Akin and Reverend Mr. Tucker at Methodist Church this afternoon. I was at the marriage of her father and mother 30 years ago.

June 10, 1885.
Got 4 pigs from John Lindsay today about 6 or 8 weeks old. Called at Wm. Parks in afternoon.

June 12, 1885.
Eleanor Martin got a telegram from Dr. Quarles today saying she was elected principal of the Preparatory Department in the Elizabeth Aule Seminary at $450 per annum. She is anxious to continue her art studies at Lindenwood another year and I went out to see Dr. Irwin about it and he will give her emplyment half day in teaching so that whe can go on.

June 14, 1885. Sabbath.
George and Minnie came to dinner and spent all afternoon. She is feeble, they are perplexed as to whether to give up their house for the summer and Minnie remain up here. No wervant and her health poor. No preaching in our church today, attended Jefferson St. Church. Wrote Dr. Quarles.

June 23, 1885.
Received a letter from Mattie saying she would leave Philadelphia on Thursday and be here on Saturday. I have just finished reading the life of Oliver Cromwell by DiAubigne. What a wonderful man he was, he was a great warrior, a great statesman and an earnest Christian. He was specially raised up by Providence to do a great work for civil and religious liberty in England. I am now reading a life of Phillip Henny by his son, Mathew Henny, the commentator. What a holy, useful life was his -- a bright shining light in his day -- 1650.

June 24, 1885.
A postal from Elden Cowan tells of Jacob Brown's death last Sunday. George and Minnie went to housekeeping again in St. Louis today. Eleanor Martin came out this afternoon.

June 26, 1885.
The two Presbyterian churches here have been considering the plan of employing one pastor and worshiping alternately in the two churches. They are both so weakened as not to be able to support a pastor alone. Some in each church are averse to it but the postion of Mr. J. E. Stonebraker in our church is so decided against it saying he will leave and go to the Methodist Church if it is carried out. This is a big responsibility to assume as it will defeat it. The prospects look dark.

June 27, 1885.
This day marks another milepost in the journey of my life -- 66 years old today and here I raise a memorial and say hitherto hath the Lord helped me. I have so many reasons to praise my God for His great Goodness to me and mine. Mattie and Shirley Borden came this morning. Both look well.

June 28, 1885.
Mr. Garvin told me at Sunday School he would remove to Fulton, Missouri. This greatly weakens our church. We are in great straits what to do about a pastor. We are not able to support a man and family. I pray the Lord to lead us out of this trouble. Attended the Jefferson Street church today.

June 29, 1885.
Rode down to Frenchtown to Mary Schumpe to get her for George and Minnie.

June 30, 1885.
I rode with Mr. Alderson to Maria Croche and by Mrs. Durfee's farm. Harvesting wheat.


  • Eleanor Martin was engaged to JJJ's son Glover at the time of his death..
  • George and Minnie -- George Sibley Johns and Minnehaha McDearmon Johns. George was JJJ's son, Minnie, George's wife, the McDearmon's are her parents.
  • Lindenwood -- A Presbyterian women's college in St. Charles.
  • Shirley was JJJ's son.
  • Mary was JJJ's daughter by Catherine Woodruff, his first wife. Her husband was Tom Pearce.
  • Lizzie was JJJ's daughter by his second wife, Jane Amanda Durfee. Her husband was Charles Henry Gauss. They were my great grandparents.
  • Percy was JJJ's nephew. Mary was Percy's sister and Bonnie was Mary's daughter.
  • Mattie and Shirley... Mattie Johns was JJJ's daughter. This Shirley was his nephew Shirley Borden, son of Jane Durfee's sister Margaret. She died while he was quite young, and Mattie went to Philadelphia to care for him.
  • Mrs. Durfee was JJJ's mother-in-law, Anne Glenday Durfee.


Source: Location of handwritten original unknown.  Transcription and excerption by Florence Johns.   Transcribed to softcopy by Susan D. Chambless, April 21, 2001.

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Last modified:Sunday, 09-Nov-2003 16:36:32 MST