|Birth: ||Feb. 6, 1780|
|Death: ||Jul. 7, 1859|
From "Old Families of Randolph County, Missouri, A Peoples History" 1976.
May Burton by Clayton Smith Hopper
To give the history of the Burton family in Randolph County would be to write much of the history of the County. Representatives of this family were among the early settlers of the county and its members have been identified with agriculture, business, and public affairs here from pioneer days.
May Burton was born in Orange County, Virginia, February 6, 1780. His parents, Ambrose Burton and Ann Wisdom Burton, became pioneer settlers of Kentucky in 1786. May Burton grew up in Kentucky and married Nancy Woolfolk of Shelby County, Kentucky October 21, 1805. He served as a private in the war of 1812 in Captain William M. Rice's company of infantry in a mounted regiment, Kentucy volunteers commanded by Col. Richard Merton Johnson. The company payroll shows that May Burton's total pay was $64.13 which included 40 cents a day for his horse. He was in the battle of the Thames in which the Indian Chief Tecumseh was killed. In 1819, he came to Missouri and settled in the southern part of what is now Randolph County. He went to work with a brave heart and willing hands and developed a large holding. He became one of the wealthy and prominent farmers of the county and one of its leading citizens. He had a family of five children who grew to maturity. In 1832, he served in the Black Hawk War under Captain Abraham Gooding. After the death of his first wife in 1836, he married Agnes Woolfolk, a sister of his first wife. He died July 7, 1859 respected and esteemed by all. He is buried in the Burton Cemetery southeast of Higbee. Two sons, Joseph Wisdom Burton and May Medley Burton spent their lives in Randolph County. Two of his brothers, Elijah and James, also came to the county.
May Medley Burton was born December 14, 1822, about a mile southwest of the present site of Higbee, Missouri. His father, May Burton, was born in Orange County, Virginia, though his parents Ambrose and Ann Wisdom Burton became pioneer settlers of Mercer County, Kentucky in 1786. May Burton grew up in Kentucy and married Nancy Woolfolk. In 1819, he came to Missouri and settled in the southern part of what is now Randolph County. May Medley Burton was one of the earliest native born residents of the county. He was reared on his father's farm. His father being a man in good circumstances provided his son a good education. He received part of his education from his brother Ambrose who was a county and government surveyor. As a young man, he started teaching school which he followed for several years. On December 5, 1845, he was married to Minerva Brooks, a daughter of William H. and Susan Pyle Brooks. After he married he settled down and engaged in farming. He secured an extensive tract of land near his father's homestead on which he resided and continued farming and stock raising until 1870. In 1856, he was elected to the legislature over George Settle by a large majority. He rode horseback to Jefferson City for the legislative sessions. May Medley Burton and his wife had two sons, Ambrose Chiles, September 23, 1846 and William Henry, December 20, 1848.
The War between the States brought problems and decisions. Missouri was a border state. May M. Burton was a slave-holder with southern sympathy. He bought slaves but never sold one. In the fall of 1864, with his two teenage sons, he left Randolph County to join the confederate army. They were sworn in at Lexington, Missouri and left Missouri following General Sterling Price's raid in 1864. They surrendered in Louisiana and were returned to St. Louis where they took the oath of allegiance.
In 1870, he was elected a member of the county court. He was re-elected from time to time until he served 8 years. He retired from the farm in 1870 and engaged in the mercantile business in Higbee, Missouri. He moved to Sweet Springs, Missouri for his wife's health in 1878, returning to the farm in 1881. Judge Burton's first wife died in April 1881. After the death of his wife, he moved to Huntsville. In 1883, the judge was married to Mrs. Sarah Lassiter Gilman, the widow of Robert G. Gilman. Her first husband was for many years treasurer of the county. Judge Burton lived for many years in Huntsville until failing eye sight and old age made him decide to spend his remaining years with his sons in and near Higbee. He died February 6, 1916 at the age of 93, the oldest native-born citizen of Randolph County.
Joseph Wisdom Burton, a brother of Judge May Medley Burton, was born in Shelby County, Kentucky, June 1, 1816. He was brought to the southern part of what is now Randolph county by his father, May Burton, in 1819. He grew to manhood in the county and spent most of his life farming on 416 acres of the original homestead with the exception of a short stay in California, to which state he went by land as Captain of a band of teamsters, returning by way of New Orleans and a brief experience in the Confederate army during the last year of the war as a teamster. On November 22, 1828, he married Orpha Jane Brooks, a sister of Minerva Brooks who married his brother May Medley Burton. They were the parents of seven children of which two died young. His first wife died May 3, 1852. He married Sarah Ann Pyle about six weeks later. They were the parents of eleven children.
The first house on the home place was a log cabin of several rooms. The second house stood over 100 years and was the center of activity for the community as well as a growing family.
Joseph W. Burton died January 5, 1911 at the age of 94, leaving many descendants who still reside in the county.
From "Death Records from Missouri Newspapers, Jan 1854 - Dec 1860, ""Randolph Citizen 7-8-1859" MO State Archives.
May Burton 7 July of inflammation of the lungs in 81st year. Resident of Randolph County more than 30 years.
Agnes Woolfolk Burton (1789 - 1879)
Nancy Woolfolk Burton (1786 - 1836)*
Infant Son Burton*
Ambrose Waller Burton (1812 - 1851)*
Joseph Wisdom Burton (1816 - 1911)*
William Woolfolk Burton (1820 - ____)*
May Medley Burton (1822 - 1916)*
John C Burton (1827 - 1847)*
Burton Rennolds Cemetery
Maintained by: Tom Waters
Originally Created by: Nancy Meadows
Record added: Mar 11, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 66790363
My fifth great grandfather|
Added: Jun. 28, 2012