Pulaski County History Crawl- J.B. King

By J.B. King
Author of “The Tilley Treasure” and “Justice”

My father was a World War II and Korean War veteran who retired from the U.S. Army after 22 years of service. Dad settled our family in Salem, Missouri, and as a result I am a 1965 graduate of Salem Senior High. I attended the School of the Ozarks at Pt. Lookout, Missouri and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology in August 1969. I entered the Missouri State Highway Patrol Academy immediately after college on Sept. 16, 1969. Upon graduation from the MSHP academy I was assigned to the Waynesville/Ft. Wood Zone of Troop I in December of 1969. Pulaski County has been my home since then. My career with the Patrol resulted in many commendations and I am one of a very small group of Troopers who have been awarded the Medal of Valor by the Missouri State Highway Patrol. I retired as the local zone sergeant in June of 2001. Shortly after retiring I became a reserve officer for the Waynesville City Police.

In 2004, I ran for the elected office of Sheriff of Pulaski County. (Be careful what you run for, you may be elected.) I won the first race and I was reelected for a second four year term in 2008. The eight years I spent as Sheriff of Pulaski County presented me with more challenges and difficulty than I had ever faced before. I like to think I did a good job in office especially in view of the problems I faced. I retired as Sheriff on 12-31-2012. The following week I became a deputy serving under our new sheriff. I am currently assigned to the detective division as a reserve (read no pay) officer who specializes in cases of financial exploitation against older adults. In 2016, I will start my 46th year in active law enforcement.

JB King

J.B. King will be a featured presenter during Pulaski County History Crawl. Photo courtesy of the author.

I am married to the former Cheryl Ann Moore of Dixon, Missouri and I have one son, Taylor. I am a past president of the Old Stagecoach Stop Foundation. I have written two books about the American civil war in Missouri. These books are The Tilley Treasure and Justice. They both contain material on Pulaski County history. I am generally regarded as one of the best experts on Pulaski County history and have written many newspaper articles on local history along with other special Missouri based publications.

At present I am considering third book and am struggling to understand the world of online book publishing and online sales efforts. I now have some time to continue my lifelong interest with the events of World War II and other military history in general.

This article first appeared in “Dispatches”- the quarterly publication of the Military Writers Society of America. To view the issue in its entirety please visit http://www.mwsadispatches.com/dispatches/2016/1/17/winter-2016

Military Writers Society of America is hosting “Pulaski County Missouri History Crawl” September 30th through October 2nd, 2016 in Saint Robert, Missouri. This event will especially appeal to authors, historians, researchers, photographers, journalists, bloggers, and educators. Learn more at http://slate.adobe.com/cp/EDCUA. History Crawl spaces are limited, make your reservation today by contacting Pat Avery at patavery@gmail.com.

Mr. King will be a featured presenter during the Pulaski County History Crawl. You can purchase his books through Pulaski County Tourism Bureau.

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The Pulaski County (MO) History Crawl

by Laura Huffman
Pulaski County Tourism Bureau

 The Ozark Mountains hold an almost mysterious allure that can be traced back to the earliest days of westward expansion. In Pulaski County, in the heart of the Ozarks, place names like Devils Elbow, Bloodland, Colley Holler, the California House, Wildcat Hollow, Poor Farm, Bear Ridge, and Boiling Spring pique the interest of the curious. Route 66 quickens the pulse of those with an interest in Americana, cars, and highways. The now silent whistles of the Frisco Railroad tempt those who yearn for days when railroads cut their swath across the United States and travel was both an event and an adventure. Civil War buffs seek out Pulaski County for its Old Stagecoach Stop and its strategic importance on the Old Wire Road. Military historians visit the archives at the three U.S. Army branch museums (Chemical, Military Police, and Engineer) on Fort Leonard Wood. Ghost towns such as Big Piney, Humboldt, Hancock,  Helm, and nearby Arlington call to the lovers of the abandoned and forgotten. The Big Spring on the Roubidoux River in downtown Waynesville and Portuguese Point on the Gasconade River have drawn artists and photographers for as long as can be remembered. Inspirational locations are around every corner.

Josh Massey Edits Resized

Overlooking Devils Elbow bridge. Photo by Julie Ann Capps.

Pulaski County has had many events that defined the area. The Civil War is still visible in the area when looking at what is now the BNSF Railroad. Before the “War of Northern Aggression” the railroad was scheduled to be laid in the southern part of the county. After the war it was rerouted to follow troop tails that were pioneered across the northern part of the county. Interestingly, this led to the more rugged southern part of the county to be less populated- which opened the door to the building of the Seventh Corps Training Area, now known as Fort Leonard Wood. World War II is still visible on Fort Leonard Wood as well. The open air museum includes barracks and churches from the earliest days of the training installation. Beautiful stonework still adorns culverts and other areas on the military base- these were created with the labor of prisoners of war during the Second World War.

Pulaski County Poor Farm Cemetery

Pulaski County, Missouri Poor Farm Cemetery. Photo by Pat McGrath Avery.

Pulaski County is the perfect place to meet and develop your next main character. The gentleman at Starbucks could very well be a soldier who recently returned from the Middle East. The bartender  serving up an ice cold beer at the local watering hole could very well be a retired U.S. Navy Seabee. Everyday heroes walk amongst us every day in Pulaski County. Our history pages unveil characters as well- the tie-rafters on the Big Piney at the turn of the 20th century, the Swedish immigrants who took a chance on a wide spot on the railroad to make their fortune, the Italian immigrants who took that same chance on a nearby wide spot and became the first to develop the grape and wine culture in Missouri. We have stores and farms with stories to be told. The H.E. Warren Store in Richland has served its clientele continuously since it first opened its doors in 1869.  Three businesses in Crocker have their beginnings established over a 100 years ago. 18 farms have been recognized as Missouri Century Farms- including one with the second oldest ranch brand in the country.

Much like Tilley’s Treasure, many of Pulaski County’s greatest stories are still waiting to be discovered and told. They are waiting for your voice, your pen, and your vision.

This article first appeared in “Dispatches”- the quarterly publication of the Military Writers Society of America. To view the issue in its entirety please visit www.mwsadispatches.com/dispatches/2016/1/17/winter-2016

Military Writers Society of America is hosting “Pulaski County Missouri History Crawl” September 30th through October 2nd, 2016 in Saint Robert, Missouri. This event will especially appeal to authors, historians, researchers, photographers, journalists, bloggers, and educators. Learn more at http://slate.adobe.com/cp/EDCUA. History Crawl spaces are limited, make your reservation today by contacting Pat Avery at patavery@gmail.com. 

The Old Stagecoach Stop

by Pat McGrath Avery
Military Writers Society of America

A lot can be learned from old historic buildings and the Old Stagecoach Stop is a prime example. From architectural style to owners and purposes, a building speaks for itself.

Located on the square in Waynesville, off Interstate 44, the building is the oldest remaining building in Pulaski County, Missouri, and has a long and varied history.

William Walton McDonald purchased the land in 1854 with the intent of building a hotel for the St. Louis to Springfield stagecoach route. Built in sections, the building became a double pen log structure.

Starting as a single pen- a one-room log cabin with a door in front and an exterior chimney on one side- the building then became a double pen structure when another pen was added next to it. Over the years, owners added a second story and an extension.

During the Civil War, Union troops built a fort on a hill above Waynesville and commandeered the stagecoach hotel for a hospital.

The Old Stagecoach Stop in Waynesville, MO has a lot of stories to tell!

The Old Stagecoach Stop in Waynesville, MO has a lot of stories to tell! Photo by Laura Huffman

After the war, the railroad came to the Ozarks serving other towns nearby. Waynesville lost its importance as a stopover when the stagecoach disappeared. However, a string of owners kept the hotel open over the years.

Saved by the building of Route 66, the area once again became a travel stopover. The hotel remained open and at one point, part of the building housed a dentist office. Then in 1941 and the building of Ft. Leonard Wood, the hotel became home to construction workers and army personnel.

Old Stagecoach Stop in Waynesville, MO is an Ingress portal. Photo by Terry Primas.

Old Stagecoach Stop in Waynesville, Missouri. Photo by Terry Primas.

The hotel remained open until the 1960’s. After twenty years of abandonment, the city of Waynesville condemned the structure, but thanks to caring citizens, the building was purchased and restored.

Today it serves as a museum where Pulaski County volunteers treat it with loving care and will gladly share its story with anyone gifted with curiosity or a love of history.

This article first appeared in “Dispatches”- the quarterly publication of the Military Writers Society of America. To view the issue in its entirety please visit www.mwsadispatches.com/dispatches/2016/1/17/winter-2016

Military Writers Society of America is hosting “Pulaski County Missouri History Crawl” September 30th through October 2nd, 2016 in Saint Robert, Missouri. This event will especially appeal to authors, historians, researchers, photographers, journalists, bloggers, and educators. Learn more at http://slate.adobe.com/cp/EDCUA. History Crawl spaces are limited, make your reservation today by contacting Pat Avery at patavery@gmail.com. 

 To learn more about the Old Stagecoach Stop Museum & Foundation please visit www.oldstagecoachstop.org and follow them on Facebook at: www.facebook.com/oldstagecoachstop

Pulaski County USA Hosts Outdoor Communicator Conference

Pulaski County, Missouri in Autumn. Photo by Dwayne Hicks

Pulaski County, Missouri in Autumn. Photo by Dwayne Hicks

Beth Wiles, Executive Director and Karen Hood, Marketing Relations Manager of Pulaski County Tourism Bureau recently announced that Pulaski County has been selected as the location for the annual conference of the Missouri Outdoor Communicators in September 2016.

Recently approved at a Board of Directors meeting, the Pulaski County Tourism Bureau made an impression on organizers during the 2014 MOC Conference in Columbia this fall when presenting their destination as a possible site for a future conference.

The Missouri Outdoor Communicator’s Executive Director, The Beenders Walker Group, wrote “Pulaski County will be a ‘perfect destination’ for our 2016 MOC Annual Conference. Your ability to provide such a beautiful Ozarks outdoor destination with a wide variety of activities and sightseeing opportunities made this an easy decision. We definitely look forward to visiting your area on a site visit to brainstorm.”

The dates for the conference are September 9-11, 2016.

Chartered in 1994, the Missouri Outdoor Communicators’ mission is to advance knowledge of natural resources and related recreational pursuits, to improve MOC members’ communication skills, to promote outdoor communications, to encourage appropriate use and conservation of natural resources and to mentor the next generation of outdoor communicators.

To learn more about Pulaski County, Missouri please visit: http://www.PulaskiCountyUSA.com
Follow Pulaski County USA on Twitter at @PulCoUSA
Follow Beth Wiles on Twitter at @BWPulCo
Follow Karen Hood on Twitter at @KHPulCo
To learn more about Missouri Outdoor Communicators please visit: http://missourioutdoorcommunicators.org