JOHN J. COLLARD, scholar, politician, county official, school teacher and more or less public scribe for the Bay Creek country in the days when many of the settlers could not write their own names, was also a soldier on the side of the Union in the War of the Rebellion. He left Pittsfield late in 1859 or early in 1860, several years after the conclusion of his second term as county clerk. He then went to Pleasant Hill with his family. This was shortly after the birth of his ninth child, William Webb Collard, who was born in Pittsfield July 27, 1859.
During the Civil War, John J. Collard went over into Missouri and enlisted with a group of his old comrades of the early Missouri border. He became first sergeant of Company C, 10th Regiment of Missouri Volunteers. During the war, his services as a scribe were much in demand. He it was who penned numerous of the letters sent back by his comrades to loved ones at home.
Mrs. A. Wall of Nebo, whose first husband was John J. Collard's son, Elijah Barton Collard, recalls it being said that John J. did so much writing, largely with a goose quill pen, that he had to wear a stall on the little finger of his pen hand to keep it from being worn away.
John J. Collard enlisted in the Union army in 1863, following conclusion of a term of school in Calhoun county, in which county he taught after his removal from Pittsfield.
Mr. Collard continued in public life after his return from the war. In 1873, the year before his death, we find him a commissioned notary public in Pleasant Hill. His commission was signed by Governor John L. Beveridge, who was elected Illinois lieutenant governor in 1872 and who became governor in 1873 when Governor Richard J. Oglesby resigned for a seat in the United States Senate.
John J. and Mary Elizabeth (Barton) Collard had 11 children, namely: Lydia Rebecca, Eliza Jane, Elijah Barton, Mary Elizabeth, Lucretia, Daniel D., Harvey Gilmer, John Ray, William Webb, Ora Emma and Laura Ann Collard.
Lydia Rebecca, first born of the children, was named for her paternal and maternal grandmothers, Lydia (Cannon) Collard and Rebecca (Holland ) Barton. She was born in Fairfield (now Pleasant Hill), September 21, 1841. She lived only a little over a year, her death occurring April 12, 1843. She was buried in the old Jackie Sapp burial row, atop the high bluff on what is now the Elza Barton place, east of Stockland. This cemetery was abandoned 65 years ago, when the last burial was made therein. The first burial of record was made at this spot in 1830. Not a stone is left standing intact in this burial place where so many of the early Bay Creek settlement were interred.
Eliza Jane Collard, second of the children, was born in Fairfield February 27, 1843, shortly before the death of Lydia Rebecca. On December 15, 1872 she married Martin H. Hulshult, with Justice John Mills officiating. He was born July 9, 1849 in Ohio, a son of Henry and Mary Hulshult, both natives of Germany.
The Hulshults had no children of their own, but Mrs. Hulshult's niece, Ora Emma Collard Waugh, daughter of Daniel D. Collard, made her home with them much of the time following her own mother's death.
Martin H. Hulshult died June 13, 1921 at Pleasant Hill, aged 71 years, ten months and three days. His wife reached the age of 87, being active until shortly before her death. Mrs. Alvin T. Brant relates that Mrs. Hulshult, when 82, was still an excellent quilter and that she continued her tatting until she was 87. She died May 5, 1930, aged 87 years, two months and eight days. She was buried beside her husband in Crescent Heights cemetery at Pleasant Hill.
Elijah Barton Collard, third child and first son of John J. Collard and Mary Elizabeth Barton, was born at Bayville (early village on Bay Creek), October 16, 1844. He became a merchant at Strout and was also a station agent for the Chicago & Alton railroad at that Pike county point.
On November 25, 1877 E. B. Collard married Emma Harpole, the ceremony being performed by Justice A. Glyn. She was a daughter of Lycurgus and Sarah Jane (Martin) Harpole and a sister of former County Clerk John D. Harpole of Pittsfield. Two sons were born to Elijah B. and Emma (Harpole) Collard, namely, Arthur Barton and Clyde Oscar Collard.
Arthur Barton Collard, born December 30, 1878, resides in Louisiana, Missouri, and is employed as a telegrapher for the Chicago & Alton railroad at Bowling Green, Missouri. He is unmarried.
Clyde Oscar Collard, born July 8, 1881, married first, Lillian B. Spicher of Louisville, Kentucky. They had two children, Frances and Norman Collard.
Frances Collard, on July 3, 1932, married John William Robinson of Pittsfield, a school teacher and a son of R. Keys and Minnie (Gheen) Robinson, with the Reverend W. H. Cannon of the Christian church performing the ceremony. They reside at Alsey, Illinois, and have two children, John William, Jr. and David Collard Robinson.
Norman Collard married Laverne Darter of Pinckneyville, Illinois. They reside in Boston, Massachusetts, where he is a chemical engineer with Badger & Company.
Clyde O. Collard's second wife was Maude Bradburn. Mr. and Mrs. Collard reside in Nebo.
Elijah Barton Collard died at Strout December 2, 1890, aged 46. He is buried in Crescent Heights.
Mr. Collard's widow, Emma (Harpole) Collard, later married A. Wall of Nebo. She and her husband reside in Nebo near the residence of her son, Clyde O. Collard.
Mary Elizabeth Collard, fourth child and third daughter of John J. Collard, was born at Bayville June 6, 1847. On December 29, 1864 she married John Hancock Brant. The Reverend Fred Priestley, 1858 English settler near Pleasant Hill, said the ceremony.
John Hancock Brant was a son of John L. and Catherine (Doman) Brant. He was born in Franklin county, Missouri, September 18, 1836. His father was born in Oldton, Allegheny county, Maryland, February 11, 1802. His mother was born in Mill Run, Hampshire county, Virginia, July 16, 1806. The parents were married in Hampshire county, Virginia, January 13, 1825, by the Reverend John Arnold. They moved from Virginia to Missouri the same year, leaving Hampshire county on April 19, 1825. They settled in Pickney, Montgomery county, Missouri, May 16, 1830, moving later to Franklin county, Missouri.
Brothers and sisters of John Hancock Brant were Jacob L., born July 20, 1827; William C., born November 13, 1830; Susan Jane, born January 6, 1833; James R., born July 27, 1835; Sarah Ann, born October 19, 183-; Riley, born May 21, 1842; and Hester D. Brant, born August 18, 1844.
Several members of this family have a place in Pike county history. Jacob L. Brant, on September 16, 1847, in Franklin county, Missouri, married Susan Fetchum. Their children were Gilpin, Carrie, Jennie Brant Gudgell, John Brant and Maggie Brant Miller. Jacob L. Brant, uncle of Alvin T. Brant of Pittsfield and Mrs. Lucretia Brant Gresham and Mrs. Jennie Brant Yokem of Pleasant Hill, was a hero of two wars, Mexican and Civil. He was a member of Tindall Post No. 29, Grand Army of the Republic, December of Missouri. He died in Chillicothe, Missouri, March 12, 1900.
Susan J. Brant married James M. Ferres February 11, 1851, in St. Louis, Missouri, with the Reverend R. Duglas performing the ceremony.
William C. Brant married Christena Turnbaugh, in Pike county, August 5, 1852, with Justice Samuel H. Galloway officiating.
Sarah Ann Brant was the first wife of Augustus L. Galloway, pioneer in Pleasant Hill township and son of James and Ursula (Lewis) Galloway. She married A. L. (Dick) Galloway in Pike county, November 24, 1859. They had five children, three of whom reached maturity, namely, Lyman H., Ann P. and Minnie L. Galloway.
Lyman H. married Laura Fisher, who died leaving one child, Bertie, who married Newton Shinn, a resident of Carrollton, Missouri. Lyman again married, his second wife being Clara C. Dodge, a daughter of Clinton Dodge and granddaughter of Dr. Hezekiah Dodge of early Bayville. They had two children, Scott Galloway, who married a daughter of Dr. J. Smith Thomas, and Beatrice, who married Harry Bush of Nebo. Lyman Galloway died March 3, 1903.
Ann P. Galloway was the first wife of James Curtis Yokem of Pleasant Hill and at her death in 1893 left one child, Fay Yokem, who married, first, Sidney LaDow, and second, Elmer Martin of Pleasant Hill.
Minnie L. Galloway married James DeCamp and at her death left a daughter, Lora DeCamp.
Sarah Ann (Brant) Galloway died in 1874 and in 1875 A. L. Galloway married again, his second wife being Maria E. McConnell of Calhoun county. By this marriage there were four children, Clara Myrtle (who died in infancy), Milo E. (now deceased), Carrie Lenora (wife of Alvin T. Brant of Pittsfield) and Mayo L. Galloway of Pleasant Hill.
John L. Brant was three times married. His second wife was Nancy Cain, whom he married in Pike county April 10, 1853, with Justice Alex Hemphill officiating. She died December 10, 1863 at the age of 39 years, six months and 18 days. She is buried in the old Sapp cemetery, near Stockland.
On June 5, 1864, John L. Brant married Mrs. Mary E. Gregory, the ceremony being said by the Reverend Fred Priestly of Pleasant Hill. She was the mother of Della Brant who, in Calhoun county, on July 5, 1887, married Perry W. Thatcher. They were married by Justice S. J. (Uncle Sam) Merida. They had one daughter, Clemma Thatcher. Following Mr. Thatcher's death, Della married a Mr. Alexander of Chicago.
Other children of John L. Brant by his later marriage were Hardin Brant, who married Ruth Voshall and died in Fresno, California, and Fred Brant, who married Nellie Blackston.
John Hancock Brant, a native of Franklin county, Missouri, lived in that county until 1849, in which year he moved with his parents to St. Louis. In 1852 the family set out up river from St. Louis by steamboat and landed at Clarksville, this being one of the earliest landings made at that point by an up-river boat to let off passengers.
From Clarksville the Brant, crossing the Mississippi river, wended their way inland to Pleasant Hill, then but a small cluster of houses up on the hill. They settled on the hill, where they took their first meals with the Emerts, grandparents of Harry Craigmiles, whose mother was Sarah A. (Emert) Craigmiles, wife of Peter V. Craigmiles. Harry Craigmiles later became the husband of John H. Brant's daughter, Nola Brant.
In the village of Pleasant Hill, young John H. Brant learned the blacksmith trade from his father and assisted him in the shop, also, a little later, engaging in farming. Learning the blacksmithing trade when he was 16, he followed that trade 45 years, in Pleasant Hill, Independence and Pittsfield.
In June, 1861, while plowing corn in a field that later became a part of the Albert Venable farm, south of Pleasant Hill, he suddenly decided to give himself to the cause of the Union in the civil conflict then raging. The corn he was tending was a partnership crop between himself and William Emert. He told Emert that if he would take care of the crop he would enlist in the war. Emert agreed. Brant dropped his team's traces and left them standing in the field. Hurrying to Clarkaville, he caught a downriver boat to St. Louis. Arriving at St. Louis, he enlisted as a private soldier in Company A, 8th Regiment of Missouri Volunteer Infantry. He took part in some of the fiercest fighting of the Civil War. He was at both Shiloh and Vicksburg and was a member of the 15th Division under General Sherman in the advance upon Atlanta. At Shiloh he was in the division command by General Lew Wallace. He was often called upon for blacksmithing service while in the field with the Union army.
He was honorably discharged from the U. S. service on July 1, 1864. He then returned to Pleasant Hill where on December 29, 1864 he married Mary Elizabeth Collard, daughter of John J. and Mary Elizabeth (Barton) Collard.