Stephen McCollum of North Salem Township
Linn County, Missouri
Stephen W. McCollum is a native of Clay county, Kentucky, born on August 10, 1827. His parents, David and Rachel (Morris) McCollum were born and reared in South Carolina, and moved from that state to Kentucky early in their married life. The father was a blacksmith, and worked at this trade in his native state and that of his first adoption. In 1840 he brought his family to this state , and in 1843 to Linn County, and here the father continued at this trade. both parents died in Linn county. They had 12 children, all of whom also are dead but their son, Stephen W. and he is now nearly eighty-five years old. He was 14 years old when the family moved to Missouri.
As soon as he was large and strong enough he began learning his trade as a blacksmith under the instruction of his father. On July 24, 1861, he enlisted in Company A, 18th Missouri Volunteer Infantry, in defense of the Union, and he served actively and to his cost until he was honorably discharged from the army. On February 6, 1865, at Marks Mill he was taken prisoner and during the next ten months he suffered all the horrors of one of the awful prison pens of the Confederacy. This experience was far worse in his estimate than the 14 big battles in which he took part, including the engagements at Prairie Grove, Arkansas. He was wounded twice, once in the neck and once in the head. After his discharge from the army he returned to his home and resumed work at his trade.
Mr. McCollum was married on February 11, 1848, to Elizabeth Bolling, a native of Missouri. They had 5 children: Benjamin F., William M., Mary, Robert, and Shannon D. Mother of these children died September 27, 1874, and the fatehr took as second wife, Mrs. Margaret Bunch, a widow who is still living. They have lived long and lived serviceably here and the people around them are proud of the high examples they have given of true and faithful American manhood and womanhood. Mr. McCollum's grandfather, David McCollum, was a native of South Carolina, a blacksmith by occupation, an excellent citizen, like all the other members of the family. he died in Indiana.
Second account of Stephen W. McCollum
(A lot of it was a repeat of the above--I deleted the repetition)
A veteran of the Civil War, and since the close of that momentous sectional conflict, which so nearly rent our country asunder, for years an industrious and thrifty mechanic, and ever since a progressive and prosperous farmer, Stephen W. McCollum, of North Salem township has a record of usefulness and fidelity to duty which would be creditable to any man. In times of peace he has forged the implements of useful and productive industry; and times of war he has shown that he knew how to handle the implements of aggressive and defensive warfare.
Almost all educational advantages as furnished by schools were denied him but nature was his teacher and she imbued him with a spirit of independence and self-reliance which the addtional lessons of experience, always thorough but sometimes severe, intensified and made practical.