Freaky Friday’s #26 ~ It Happened In My Hometown

freakyfridayI was born in a small town in rural Missouri many, many moons ago. I was 11 months old when we moved from Lexington, Lafayette County to Arizona. To say I don’t remember much about it would be an understatement. We did move back for about 3 months when I was 11 years old so I do have a few fond memories of the town. I have returned for numerous visits over the years and I love the historic nature of the community. Once I began researching my family history, I discovered that Lexington played a very large role in a lot of family happenings over the last 120 years. Some good and some bad, but they are all part of my history.

Until I began writing blogs 7 years ago, I was not aware of the rich Lexington-courthousehistory of this town. One of the events happened during the Civil War. There was a 3-day battle. “The Siege of Lexington” fought in the town in September 1861. Although the State of Missouri was considered a Union State, the rural folks who lived in the State sided with the Confederates. This battle, fought between the Union soldiers and the Pro-Confederate Missouri State Guard was considered a minor one, but there was a lot of damage, and lives were lost. There is still a cannonball stuck in a pillar of the courthouse to this day!

The war ended on May 8, 1865. It was hard for those who fought against each other to go back to the way it was before. The “winners” felt superior and the “losers” were angry. All across the State families and good friends had been separated by the stances they took during this time. So it is no surprise that less than two months after the end of the war when the county was trying to get back to “normal” that there were some objections and threats issued when it was announced that there would be a 4th of July celebration that year. The following is an announcement about the upcoming event.

lexington 4th of July 1865

R.W.P . Mooney was a 1st Lieutenant in Company D Ozarks 14th Militia. After the war, he returned to Lexington and became part of the County Cavalry Unit at the command post. As the sign said there were those who wanted to have the celebration separated from their former adversaries. I like what this man did, he called a meeting to get it straightened out before there was a “problem”. I discovered that this meeting did take place and they did have a peaceful 4th of July celebration that year.

I find it “freaky” that I am now what I call older-than-dirt and I am just now learning about my hometown.


I am a professional genealogist, writer, photographer, wife, mother, and grandma. I have two books available on Your Family History: Doing It Right the First Time and Planning Your Genealogy Research Trip. You can also connect with me via Facebook or Twitter.