Search This Blog

Saturday, October 20, 2012

My Ancestors of Old Linn Creek

For generations Linn Creek, Missouri, was a thriving town in Camden County.

Now referred to as Old Linn Creek, it had a few doctors over the years, including my great-great grandfather Dr. Joel C. Crouch (1825-1873), who was the town physician from 1860 to 1873.

He was commissioned as a Civil War surgeon on May 20, 1863, for the 47th Regiment, Missouri Militia. I'm sure he saw his share of carnage under the most dire circumstances.

I wish I had a photo of Joel. But I haven't given up!

I spent the past day and a half in "new" Linn Creek, built in the 1930s, doing research on the Crouch side of my ancestral family.

It was established shortly after the Bagnell Dam was built in 1931 and the valley below was flooded to become the Lake of the Ozarks.

At the Camden County Museum in Linn Creek, housed in a former school, there is a wonderful group of research staff and volunteers who provided additional information for me about the Crouches. They said what occasionally has become music to my ears during my genealogy research: "We have a file on that family."

They provided some additional biographical and U.S. Census information.

And then they directed me to the Old Linn Creek Memorial Cemetery, which was relocated to a bluff overlooking the Lake of the Ozarks prior to the valley being flooded.

I drove to the cemetery this morning.

The Crouch family gravesite at the cemetery (note the lake in the background). I got emotional when I found them.

Dr. Joel C. Crouch's grave is broken. I went back to the historical museum afterwards and asked if there is a monument company that might repair it and was told that it's on the list of improvements, subject to funding. I made a healthy donation.

Note the Freemasons symbol at the top of the headstone. One of the next things on my to-do list is to contact the local Masonic Lodge to ask if they have information about him.

His wife, my great-great grandmother, was Ellen V. Jarboe Crouch (1823-1878).

Their children were Charles Edward Crouch (1847-1872)

William M. Crouch (1853-1891)

Eliza Rebecca Crouch Shubert (1860-1883)

Eliza was married and had an infant son when she died at the young age of 22.

Note the sweet image of the baby's hand under the parents'. Eliza's husband Charles Hudson Shubert and their son son Lesley are not buried at this cemetery and I haven't yet figured out what happened to them (but I will!).

And May Ellen Crouch Easley (1865-1932), who was my great-grandmother.

May is not buried at the Old Linn Creek Memorial Cemetery because she married Edward Merritt Easley (she was 16, he was 34!) and moved to Lebanon, Missouri, a few counties over. She is buried at the Lebanon City Cemetery.

I'm still on the hunt for the backstories about many of the Crouches. I want to make a trip to Kentucky sometime, where Joel, Ellen, Charles and William were born. Thankfully I have the flexibility of time now that I'm retired!

Here are a couple of additional photos from today, just for fun.

I spent some time today at the Camden County Library, which has this sign on the front door (that's the Ozarks for you!):

When I hit the road for the three-hour drive back to Bella Vista, Arkansas, the sun was setting fast and the sky was full of colors to rival the changing leaves in the Ozark Mountains:

 I'll be home in Pasadena late tomorrow evening.

The photographs of the Crouches are from my own family collection.


  1. The children of your Great, Great grandparents the Crouch's lived shorter lives then their parents. Do u know why they died relatively young (disease, war, etc?)

    Btw, it's good to know that library back there doesn't want you to conceal any of your weapons.

    Welcome Home!

    1. Mike, I ran out of time on this visit, but hopefully next spring I can poke around the old Camden County courthouse and try to find death records. I have no idea why they were so short-lived.

  2. This post gives the light in which we can observe the reality.This is very nice one and gives indepth information.Thanks for sharing this nice

  3. looks like Mike from Georgia wants your bones

  4. What a fun trip to Linn Creek. I made a documentary movie, Whispering Waters, about Old Linn Creek some years back, If you haven't seen it you can borrow it from the County Library or order the DVD on eBay. It contains many
    interviews with folks who actually remembered OLC. The movie was mostly made in the 1990s.

    You spoke of finding records in the Old Court House, the old Camden Count court house which was in OLC was destroyed along with the rest of the town in 1928. The cemetery you visited was never relocated. It is the original Old Linn Creek cemetery, built on a hill high above the town of Linn Creek becausewhose residents were concerned about occasional flooding of the Osage River. Prior to the town of Old Linn Creek, the town was called Erie, Old Erie was moved up the river a mile further from the river to a new location and re-named Linn Creek after the creek than ran through the town. The Old Erie Cemetery still exists and is not far from the Old Linn Creek Cemetery.

    When the Lake was created OLC was destroyed and burned, a few houses moved. Some of the residents moved up the little creek 3 miles to form a new town but this time they kept the name of Linn Creek. A larger group from OLC moved a bit further and created a new town which they named Camdenton.

    Hope this was Helpful. You might also find OLC info. at the Morgan County Museum.

    Hope this was helpful.

  5. Hello!

    You mentioned wanting to see a picture of Joel Crouch. Apparently, this is a picture of him:

    Good luck!

  6. My mother-in-law, Lena Bland (maiden name) lived in old Linn Creek, as a girl and her father, Andrew Bland had a heat stroke at a young age which left him in a wheelchair. Her mother, Nancy, washed clothes for others to earn a living. They had to move when the Lake took Linn Creek, but she told me many stories of her childhood there. Thank you for the information!

  7. Loved reading your story on searching for family. My roots to back to Old Linn Creek and then on to New Linn Creek where my Dad grew up. I recognize some of the family names you've menturned as I was lucky to spend time in Linn Creek at my Grandma Gertrude Evaline Ford Caltons. I, too have great grandparents and other family buried at the Old Linn Creek Memorial Cemetery. Reading these comments I've noted the one from John Wilson mentioning an Old Erie Cemetery which I need to check into as I'm still searching where Eleanor Spencer Ford and Jesse Ford rest in peace. Also wondered if John might be related to Oran Wilson? I have wonderful memories of Oran.

  8. My Grandfather JD Ragan operated a blacksmith shop in Linn Creek in 1910. I have a postcard with him and two others in front of the shop. I am looking for any information about JD Ragan or any Ragan's who may have lived in the area.