Early Mayfield Settlers of Missouri
By Phil Norfleet
First Mayfield settlers of Pulaski and Laclede Counties, Missouri
The first known Mayfield to settle in Pulaski County, Missouri
was James Mayfield, formerly of Casey County, Kentucky. He probably arrived in
about the year 1838. In Pulaski County, he surveyed and/or patented several
tracts of land as follows:
The following is an extract from "The History of Laclede County, Missouri" (published 1979) by Lois Roper Beard, page 397:
James Mayfield and family emigrated from Casey County, Kentucky in 1828 [sic], and settled on a Gasconade River bottom farm about two miles northwest of Hazel Green. There were seven children born of this marriage - Lucy who married John Mosier; Nancy (Susie) who married Will Wair; Annie who married Bert Wisdom; Frankie who married Wilson; John E. who married Mary Hendrix; James B. whom married twice but their names are not known and William Randolph married Sarah Amanda Davis.
Based upon my own independent research, I believe
that there are several errors in the above account. James Mayfield and family
arrived in MO in about 1838 not 1828. Also, James and his wife had eight
children; in addition to the seven children named above, there was one
additional child - Sarah Mayfield. According to the 1850 Federal Census for
Laclede County MO, Sarah was born in1826; she apparently died unmarried before
The second company of settlers that came to this section was made up of George W. and Robert Davis, W. H. Smith, Elisha Northrip, F. B. Fugate, Joseph Lane, James Mayfield, John Paradise, John Mizer, J. W. Harrison, A. Story, F. W. Pearcy, H. W. Traylor and others, who settled in the rich valley of Bear Creek.
3) The following is an extract from the "History of Laclede, Camden, Dallas, Webster, Wright, Texas, Pulaski, Phelps and Dent Counties," published in 1889 by The Goodspeed Publishing Co., page 734:
William R, Mayfield, a retired farmer, was born in Casey County, Ky., April 2, 1834, and is the son of James and Mary (Johnson) Mayfield, natives of Kentucky and Tennessee, respectively. The father was a farmer by occupation, was a soldier in the Mexican War [sic], and he and his wife were earnest workers in the Christian Church. They moved from Kentucky to Illinois, and later to Missouri, locating in Gasconade Township, Laclede County. Here the mother died, and here the father followed her to the grave in 1853 [sic]. They were the parents of eight children, all of whom lived to be grown ...
I seriously doubt that James served in the Mexican War of 1846-1848. However, James did serve in the War of 1812 as a Private in Captain Jesse Coffee's Company of Kentucky Mounted Volunteer Militia , in the regiment commanded by Lieutenant-Colonel Richard Davenport. [Source - Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort KY, Microfilm Box 1140].
Also, the 1853 date of death for James is in
error; he died in 1849, I obtained this information from the 1850 Federal
Mortality Census for Missouri. Per the census: James is cited as being a widower
who died in August 1849 at the age of 58. Thus his year of birth would be 1791.
The Mortality Census cites James's place of birth as being in Virginia. I presume this information
was provided by one of his children, most probably by his eldest son, James B.
Mayfield. I have often wondered if the place of birth is correct. I am virtually
certain that James Mayfield Sr.'s father was Randolph Mayfield of Casey County
KY and Lincoln County TN, The 1790 census for SC indicates that Randolph was
then living in Greenville County SC. The next firm information I have is that
Randolph was living in Lincoln County KY by 1797. - KY having been made a state
separate from Virginia in 1796. If James was born in 1791, as indicated by the
Mortality Census, then he more probably was born in South Carolina.