. 774 - "GEORGE THOMAS LANGSTON
"Is the oldest of four children of the late Jacob and Cornelia (Northcutt) Langston, and was born March 1, 1830, in Bourbon county, KY. His father moved to Boone county MO, in 1835 or 1836, and settled on a farm about seven miles northeast of Columbia on the old Columbia and St. Charles road, on Little Cedar creek. George was educated at the country schools in the neighborhood and has always lived upon the old place. In 1861, when the country was arming for the great civil war, he espoused the cause of the South and went out with the old State Guards from Boonville, in Shanks’ regiment, Company K. Was in the battles of Lone Jack and Independence. Being sent by Col. Thompson to gather up recruits that were in hiding in the brush in the vicinity of his father’s farm, he was captured by Col. Frank Russell and Captain Williams and taken to St. Louis and confined in prison for ten months, when he was tried as a spy and sentenced to be shot. Was under sentence of death for three months. He was granted a new trial and was tried by a military commission and sentenced to the military prison at Alton, IL, at hard labor. Was released in the fall of 1864, after being in prison over a year. He then came back to the farm and has lived at his present home ever since. His is a good farm, containing 280 acres of good land, well timbered and watered, the Little Cedar running through the place. His father died February 20, 1851, and his mother December 17, 1878, at the age of 69. They are buried at Cedar Creek church, Callaway county, MO. Only himself and brother, James F., are living of the children. Joseph W. was wounded at the battle of Pea Ridge, in 1862, and died from the effects of the wound. Nancy H., his only sister, died some time since. Our subject, George T., is a Mason, in good standing in the lodge, and is regarded by all as an upright, honest citizen. He deals almost exclusively in stock, only having thirty acres in cultivation for grain, all the rest in grass."
"Dr. Laws, president of the Missouri State University, is a descendant of one of two brothers, who came over from England in 1672, and settled in Maryland. He is a native of the Old Dominion where he received the rudiments of an education in the ‘Oldfield school.’ He afterwards entered Miami University, where he graduated valedictorian of his class. Entering Princeton Seminary, he there pursued his theological studies for three years, completing the course and receiving the first honors of his class. He began his ministerial career in St. Louis, but was soon called to the church in Lexington, Missouri, but before accepting this charge, he was elected president of Westminster College, Fulton, Missouri, and at once assumed the duties and responsibilities of that position. His administration was prosperous and highly satisfactory to the patrons of that institution. When the late civil war broke out he resigned, and applied himself to the quiet and congenial task of translating Aristotle. While in the midst of his labors, he was arrested, and taken to prison by the Union authorities, on account of his Southern proclivities. After being confined in several prisons, and suffering great hardships, he was finally released on parole, to remain in the loyal States, Canada and Europe, which latter country he visited, remained some time, principally at Paris, availing himself of this opportunity of acquiring a thorough knowledge of the French language. He returned to the United States while the war was yet in progress, landing in New York, where he had relatives in business. He was there made vice-president of the Gold Exchange, which office he filled very acceptably. The institution prospered so remarkably under his management that the directory presented him with a handsome testimonial, and a certificate of membership, a compliment never conferred upon another. After resigning his office at the Gold Exchange, Dr. Laws perfected an instrument for telegraphing the variations in the prices of gold and stocks, which is now extensively used at home and abroad. By this invention ten thousand instruments can be simultaneously operated, and the value of coin and stocks communicated at the same moment to each business house in the city where used. During his stay in New York City, he availed himself of the opportunities there offered for scientific and literary research, at the same time, pursuing courses of professional study, graduating in both law and medicine. He is at present a member of the New York bar. His medical thesis attracted no little attention, and became the theme of much favorable comment. Dr. Laws is a man of medium height, solidly built, and is in the prime of fresh, vigorous manhood. The nervous, sanguine temperament predominates in his disposition, but is well blended with the bilious and phlegmatic, giving him great vitality of action and thought. This combination of forces has given Dr. Laws a mind thoroughly poised, which avoids harshness in judgment, and extremes in action; works calmly and systematically, and is capable of great excitement, on supreme occasions. He has all those qualities that thoroughly individualize a man, and is a most decided type of himself. While ambitious of distinction and approval, he is far too manly a man to desire them at the expense of his own convictions of right and truth, and is capable of the most heroic self-sacrifice for an opinion, which has the sanction of his own deliberate judgment. He is one of the best informed men of the age, having accumulated vast stores of information in all departments of knowledge, and is ever ready with facts and dates, no matter what the subject under consideration, his memory being simply prodigious. As a general scholar, President Laws has no superior in the West, and this is the more notable as his habit of exhaustive study makes every so-called general topic special. His travels in Europe gave him the advantage of intercourse with the ripest scholarship of that continent, and he always availed himself of every opportunity to verify his facts and statements by undisputed authority. As a metaphysician, Dr. Laws stands in the front rank of American minds; his rare attainments and exceptional talents are universally conceded; his features express great executive ability and as acquaintance ripens the conviction deepens that, as the head of some great corporation, or as chairman of a committee on home or foreign affairs, he would have acquitted himself with no less distinction than in his present most honorable and responsible office. His position at the head of our State University is, without controversy, the most important position in the commonwealth, and Missouri is to be congratulated that here, where the largest measures of ability, scholarship and executive talent are demanded, they are so eminently combined. Before the Missouri legislature, in 1877, Dr. Laws pointed out the fact, which was long lost sight of, that the University was an integral part of the public school organization, established by law and imbedded in the successive constitutions of the State. It was one of the fundamental conditions of Missouri’s admission to the Union, that her general assembly should take measures for the improvement of public lands for the support of a university. For this service to the State, Dr. Laws merits the thanks of all lovers of a generous system of education. Strength and gentleness are by no means disassociated in President Laws. He is a thorough gentleman in all the relations of life, and one every way worthy to be intrusted with the formation of manners as well as mind. His personal example and influence cannot but be advantageous to those who enjoy the benefit of association with him, for by no means the least of his gifts is the transcendent power of personal quality. The firmness and candor displayed by Dr. Laws in the late controversy growing out of his address delivered before the Press Association, at St. Joseph, Missouri, is not only characteristic of the man, but creditable to his judgment and manhood. Standing upon constitutional grounds and speaking for the millions he represented, and of a people whom it had become popular and convenient to malign and ridicule, he but uttered a truth as old as the constitution itself. He simply affirmed that, prior to the civil war, according to the compact entered into by the several States composing the Federal Union, the question of secession was an open one, having two sides; that in fighting for the sovereignty of the States, as guaranteed to him and his people in the fundamental law of the land, Gen. Lee was no more a traitor in the eyes of law and justice than was Gen. Washington, the hero of American independence. This address, which was simply a philosophical, dispassionate review of the question of State’s rights, called down upon the devoted head of Dr. Laws the fiercest wrath of those who snuff treason at the bare mention of State’s rights. They have railed at the president for months, showing by their zealous rage that the address was all the doctor intended it to be – a masterly defense of the by no means obsolete doctrine of State’s rights. Not content, however, with vulgar abuse, some of his critics misstate the facts in the grossest, most indecent manner. There being nothing in the address upon which to base a bill of indictment against President Laws, his traducers are driven to the desperate alternative of manufacturing a man of straw, at which to hurl their bitter invectives. They declare that Dr. Laws justified the rebellion, when not a word was uttered in justification thereof. They are careful to withhold such language as would convey the real idea expressed, as in reference to the results of the war, the doctor declared that one result of that struggle was to settle for all time the question of secession. The seceded States, having suffered defeat in the struggle growing out of secession, the principle involved had been practically settled by the sword, and for all time to come."
"Robert Lemon, the subject of this sketch, is the son of Robert Lemon, Sr., a native of Virginia. The maiden name of his mother was Mary McCown. The elder Lemon was born October 6, 1752, and died July 12, 1848, at the advanced age of ninety-six. His father was a native of Ireland. Robert Lemon, Sr., emigrated to Lexington, Kentucky, in 1792. He was the youngest of nine children, eight sons and one daughter. He served in the revolutionary army, as did four of his brothers. Was under Washington and Lafayette at the surrender of Lord Cornwallis. He came to Boone county in the fall of 1824, bringing with him his wife and a numerous family of children, and settled on ‘Coon creek, three and one half miles northwest of Columbia, where he built a log cabin and commenced farming. He lived on this place till his death, which occurred as before stated. Mr. Lemon was a tailor, and followed the business previous to coming to Missouri. Mrs. Mary (McCown) Lemon died February 16, 1837, aged sixty-six years. Both the father and mother of Robert Jr., are buried at the family burying ground on the old homestead, northwest of Columbia. The subject of this sketch was born in Scott county, Kentucky, June 15, 1811. Was educated principally in Kentucky, under the care of Beverly A. Hicks, one of the most noted teachers of Scott county. He completed his education in the common schools of this county. His father settled the old homestead on Coon creek, three and one-half miles northwest of Columbia, in the fall of 1824. January 22, 1838, Robert Lemon, Jr., was married to Miss Amanda, daughter of Samuel and Mary (Baker) Marsh. By this union they had ten children, five sons and five daughters, six of whom are now living. Mrs. Lemon died January 2, 1857. October 12, 1858, he was again married to Mrs. Harriet Price, daughter of John and Ann Riley. Mrs. Price was born in Philadelphia, May, 1810. There are no children by this marriage. From 1840 up to the beginning of the late civil war, Mr. Lemon was quite an extensive mule trader. He furnished the government with a great many mules during the war with Mexico. Has always been a farmer. Lived for many years on the old farm settled by his father, northwest of Columbia. In 1850 moved to the farm he now occupies, one mile west of Columbia, on the Rocheport and Columbia gravel road. He has a good farm of 400 acres, well watered and timbered. Mr. and Mrs. Lemon are members of the Christian church, at Columbia. Mr. Lemon had one son, Robert L., killed in the late war. He was a Confederate soldier, and fell at the battle of Grand Gulf in 1863. Another son, Dr. W. T. is practicing his profession at Ashland, Missouri. His fourth son, William C., is living at home with his parents. Mr. Lemon has in his possession an interesting relic, their old family Bible, published one hundred years ago."
"Mr. Lenoir is a son of Walter R. and Sarah E. (Bouchelle) Lenoir, and was born in Wilkes county, North Carolina, October 27, 1833. He was brought by his parents to this county (Boone) when scarcely a year old, and here grew to manhood and was educated. He finished his educational career at the State university of Columbia, and soon thereafter, in 1850, made an overland trip ‘across the plains’ to California. He went with a train of ox-teams under charge of his brother-in-law, Col. F. D. Russell. He remained in California till January following, and then returned by water, via the Isthmus of Panama, arriving in Boone county, March 15, 1851. Thirteen years later, April 21, 1864, Mr. Lenoir was married to Margaret A., daughter of Austin and Lavinia Bradford, of Culpepper county, Virginia. He has always been engaged in farming, and up until 1877, continued to live on the old homestead settled by his father, three miles northeast of Columbia. At this writing he owns and resides on a fine farm of 427 acres, three miles southeast of Columbia, on the gravel road to Ashland. This place is finely improved, with residence, barn and other buildings to correspond. Mr. Lenoir is of a fine old family of Southern people, a worthy citizen and member of the Christian church at Columbia."
"Dr. Lewis was born near Glasgow, in Howard county, Missouri, July 24, 1846. He is the second of three sons of John L. and Mary E. Lewis, who moved to a place near Rocheport, in Boone county, in 1851, and located in Rocheport in 1853. In that town Malcom D. was reared, and acquired the rudiments of his education. His education was completed at the University at Columbia, and he began life for himself by clerking in the dry goods house of Clayton & Wilcox, in Rocheport. In 1865 the firm moved to Omaha, Dr. Lewis going with them. He soon, however, returned to Rocheport on account of ill health. Subsequently he went to St. Louis, and was employed in the notion house of Gill & Murphy. Returning to Boone county in 1867, he clerked for two different houses in Columbia, which was about all the business he did till he began to study for his profession. In 1872, he commenced to read medicine under Dr. A. W. McAlester, Professor of Surgery, etc., in the University. Entering the medical department of that school he applied himself closely to his studies, and graduated with the degree of M.D., in June, 1875. He first located for the practice at Woodlandville, this county, where he remained till 1880, when he removed to Rocheport and established himself there. In 1882, Dr. E. T. Bramlett became associated with Dr. Lewis, and they have a good and growing practice in several counties whose boundaries approach near Rocheport. Dr. Lewis is a member of Boone lodge, No. 121, I.O.O.F., of Rocheport."
"The gentleman whose name heads this sketch was born in Nashville, Tennessee, October 22, 1815. His parents were William and Mary Lientz, who came to this State and county in November, 1819, and settled four miles northeast of Rocheport, where Montgomery was raised. He continued to reside with his parents after coming of age, and when they became old and infirm, he took the entire management of the farm, and thus eased them of their burden, caring for them till their death like a true and faithful son. The father died in 1849, aged seventy-five and the mother in 1859, at the same advanced age. Mr. Lientz has been three times married. First, in 1844, he married Miss Calphurnia Wetmore, of St. Louis. This lady died in 1849, and two years later, he was wedded to Miss Olivia W. McClure, daughter of Dr. William McClure, of Thrall’s prairie. She died in 1856. Mr. Lientz’s present wife was a widow lady – Mrs. Ann E. Whittaker, of Virginia. He has four children. William A. Lientz, who graduated for the University of Missouri in the class of 1868, is a son of his first wife. Annie O. wife of D. W. McQuitty, is a child of the second marriage. Ella R., wife of Harry McCullough, of Howard county, and Blanche S. (unmarried), are the other two. Mr. Lientz was in the Mormon war, and served under Capt. John Ellis. In May 1846, he enlisted for the Mexican war in Company F, First regiment Missouri volunteers, and served during the war under Capt. Parsons and Col. A. W. Doniphan. Returning home at the close of that war, he continued to pursue the arts of peace, and enjoy pastoral life on the old homestead till 1881, when he moved into Howard county. His father’s old home was for many years a stopping place for travellers, and many weary tourists there enjoyed the hospitalities of this genuine Southern family. Among the celebrities who stopped at this place, were Col. Thos. H. Benton, Washington Irving, Gov. John Miller and Supreme Judges M. McGirk and George Tompkins, the latter of whom married into the Lientz family. Mr. L., belongs to the Presbyterian church, and his wife to the Mount Zion Baptist church in Howard county. He is a ruling elder in his church, and labors to advance the cause of Christ’s kingdom on earth."
"Is the son of Montgomery P. Lientz, and is the oldest child and only son. He was born on the old homestead, four miles from Rocheport, March 30th, 1848. He was reared at his birth place, and continued to live with his parents till he was twenty-two years old. The foundations of his education were laid in the country schools, he attending in early boyhood at Walnut Grove Academy. Subsequently, he attended Union Academy, in Pennsylvania. He completed his course, however at the State University at Columbia, graduating from that institution in the class of 1868. He carried off two honors at that time, having been chosen by his class to deliver the salutatory in Latin, and also winning the Stephens prize-medal as the best orator in the contest for that medal. (See history of the University). In 1869, he began reading law in Columbia, under Col. J.R. Sheilds, but the condition of his health forced him to abandon the law. October 27th, 1870, he married Miss Margaret S., daughter of John L. Hickman, Sr., of Boone county. She had graduated in Stephens college, Columbia, in the class of 1869. Soon after his marriage, Mr. Lientz, thinking an agricultural life would be conducive to his good health, moved on to a farm that he had purchased five miles west of Columbia. He lived on that place till 1880, when he sold out and bought the farm where he resides at this writing, three miles northeast of Rocheport. The place contains two hundred and sixteen acres, and is chiefly devoted to stock raising especially that of sheep. Mr. Lientz has four children, named John M., William A., Jr., Beverly Price, and Roger H. Himself and wife both belong to the Presbyterian church of Columbia."
"This gentleman was born October 24, 1814 in Spartanburg district, South Carolina. He is the son of John and Elizabeth (Warford) Lindsay. His parents being poor hired him out to the neighbors to help carry on their farms. He grew to manhood in the neighborhood of his birth, and is without text-book education. When he was twenty years of age he left home and learned the tanner’s trade. Then he came to Boone county, Missouri, in 1834 and has resided here ever since. He located in the vicinity of Union settlement, near Union church on the Perche. He lived there a year and then moved to where he now lives or in close proximity to his farm. He is a farmer, but has carried on the business of milling for about seventeen of the twenty-three years since he moved to the old homestead. He was married June 4, 1837, to Miss Adeline A. V. Edwards, in this county. She was the daughter of Presley and Mary J. Edwards, who had moved to Missouri from Tennessee some years before. He is the father of twelve children, five of whom are dead. Mary E. (deceased), born April 18, 1839; Eliza J., born March 1, 1841; Sarah Margaret, born December 18, 1842; Zerelda A., born January 1, 1845; Jezreel, born September 28, 1847; Jasper, born April 22, 1849; Cassy C.P. (deceased), born February 23, 1853; Newton born February 15, 1856; Frances Ellen (deceased), born August 2, 1858; Adeline Lenora, born January 23, 1861; Leasel and James, twins (deceased), born April 1, 1864. He is a Mason – member of the lodge at Ashland. Both he and his wife are members of the Baptist church. He is a good citizen, enjoying the esteem and confidence of his neighbors, as an evidence of which, he has been a justice of the peace for six years."
"Henry Brougham Lonsdale was born in Leicester, England, November 13, 1832. He came to America at an early age and settled first in Wisconsin. In 1853 he went to St. Louis, and the year following came to Columbia. He learned the tailoring business in boyhood and has followed it ever since. At present he is engaged in the merchant tailoring business and dealing in sewing machines. Mr. Lonsdale was married April 2, 1860, to Miss Meron G. Mayhew, of Grundy county, Missouri, a descendant of the Mayhew family of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, where Mrs. Lonsdale was born. They have had six children, one of whom is dead. The living are: Frank, Kate, Harvey, May H., and Elston Holmes. The dead child was named Maggie D. The two first named are graduates of the State University – Frank in 1881, and Kate in 1882. Mr. and Mrs. Lonsdale are members of the Christian Church. He is also a member of the I.O.G.T. He has been a member of the school board, and is now clerk of the board of the town trustees. He has a nice home in Columbia, the result of his own labors. He is an exemplary member of society and is highly appreciated by all who know him."
"William C. Lovejoy was born at Hanesville, Illinois, February 19, 1853. His father, William Lovejoy, kept a hotel at Hanesville, where he died in 1857, when the subject of this sketch was but four years old. Young Lovejoy was educated in the common schools, and was especially trained in penmanship, in which art he became quite proficient. After quitting school, he taught writing and drawing for nine years. Was employed for five years in the first buttery and creamery established in Wisconsin, where he commanded the highest salary paid by the company. He spent several years teaching in Nevada, and found it very profitable. Came to this county in 1881, and settled in the place where he now lives. He opened a green-house in Centralia in the spring of 1882, and has now one of the finest collections west of St. Louis. He will soon have a large stock of small fruits of every variety known to our soil and climate. Mr. Lovejoy is an enterprising gentleman, and has already done much to advance the local interests of the community in which he lives."
"Hon. Francis Marion Lowrey, farmer and stock raiser, is the eldest of the tree living sons of James S. and Nancy Lowrey, old pioneer settlers of Boone county, who came to Missouri in 1818 and settled on a farm near Walnut Grove church, in 1819. In 1826 they settled the old Lowrey homestead, five and one half miles east of Rocheport, on the old Columbia and Rocheport road, where the subject of this sketch was born, October 20, 1827. There were no public schools in his neighborhood during his minority, hence he was compelled to educate himself by hard study and close application. He remained with his parents until he was twenty-one years old, when he commenced working for himself. In 1849 he went to California, where he worked successfully in the mines until 1851. In 1853 he returned to that State in company with his brothers, James H. and Benjamin F., taking out a drove of stock which they disposed of at Stockton and San Francisco, where he and his brother Benjamin remained and dealt in stock until 1855, when they returned together and rented the old homestead where they farmed until 1857, when he purchased a stock farm in Johnson county, Missouri, which he cultivated until the breaking out of the war, in 1861. Mr. Lowrey enlisted in McCown’s company and regiment, Confederate army, where he served for six months. For the next four months he served in Capt. Branaugh’s company. In the spring of 1862 he was elected captain by Company F, of the 16th Regiment of Missouri Infantry, serving until the fall of 1862, when he resigned and returned to Missouri for the purpose of recruiting a cavalry regiment. In the month of December following, while recruiting, he was captured by the Federal soldiers and imprisoned for a few weeks in the State University at Columbia. From there he was taken to St. Louis and placed in the Gratiot Street prison until July 1863, when he was sent to Alton, Illinois, where he remained a prisoner until the spring of 1865. The Alton prison was vacated soon after the assassination of President Lincoln, and he was once more taken to the Gratiot Street prison, St. Louis, where he remained until July, 1865, when he was released on taking the oath. He came home and spent the next year in Boone and Lafayette, going by steamboat and stage to Diamond City, Montana, in 1866. He followed mining until 1870, when he was elected a member of the Montana legislature from Jefferson county. In 1872 he returned to Boone county and purchased the farm on which he now resides. This farm contains 240 acres. Mr Lowrey has up to this date (1882) remained a bachelor. He is a member of the Rocheport Lodge, A.F. and A.M., and a member of Columbia Chapter No. 18, R.A.M."
"The subject of this sketch is the second of three living sons of James Simpson and Nancy Lowrey, who came to Missouri in 1819, settling in what was then known as Howard county, near Walnut Grove church, and afterwards permanently on a farm located on the State road between Rocheport and Columbia, five and one-half miles from the later place. It was on this farm that James H. Lowrey was born, October 14, 1829. He remained with his parents until he attained his majority. In 1850 he made an overland journey to California, where he followed freighting from Stockton to various mines, continuing this business until the spring of 1853, when he returned home by way of Panama and New Orleans. He returned to California the same year, taking a drove of stock to Stockton, which he sold, returning overland to his home in 1854. In the fall of that year he purchased a farm in Johnson county, where he resided until 1861. He was married March 1, 1855, to Miss Mary J., daughter of John and Jane Maxwell, of Boone county. In 1861 he enlisted in Capt. Harvey McKinney’s company and regiment in which he served until 1862, when he returned home and brought his family to Boone county. While here he was arrested by Federal soldiers and imprisoned in Columbia for several months. Having taken the oath of allegiance and given bond, he was set at liberty and allowed to remain at his home in this county. In 1864 he went to Texas, where he again joined the Confederate army and was made second Lieutenant of Company K, Col. William’s regiment, Shelby’s brigade, remaining with this command until the close of the war, June 16, 1865, when he returned to Boone county and resumed farming. In 1867 he sold his farm in Johnson county and removed to Boone, buying the farm upon which he now resides containing 430 acres. In 1879 he went to Montana Territory, taking with him a car load of stock which he sold to good advantages. Mr. Lowrey has eleven children, eight daughters and three sons, all of whom are living. He is a member of the Rocheport lodge of A.F. and A.M."
"Milton Huff Lowrey, son of Milton and Martha A. (Hurst) Lowrey, was born in Missouri township, near the old Hunt farm, March 11, 1847. In early life he attended the public schools, finishing his education at the Missouri State University. His father died when he was an infant. He remained on the farm with his mother until he was sixteen years old, when he began to work for himself. He made an overland trip to California where he remained for four years, spending most of the time farming. In 1868 he returned to Boone county and purchased a farm near his birthplace. He worked this place until 1871, when he purchased the farm upon which he now lives, containing 160 acres, situated near Midway. May 26, 1874, he married Miss Luella Bedford, of near Midway, by whom he has four sons: Claude, Bedford, Lenious and an infant not yet named."
Professor of Civil Engineering, Dean of Engineering Faculty, and Secretary of University Faculty, Missouri State University, Columbia, Missouri.
"Prof. Lowry, the present able dean of the engineering school of the ‘University of the State of Missouri,’ is a descendant of one of two brothers who came over from Scotland in 1747 and settled in Philadelphia. He is a native of Randolph county Missouri, and was born November 29, 1850. His paternal grandfather was Dr. John J. Lowry, of Howard county, Missouri; his father, Dr. W T. Lowry, was a physician of eminence and a man of extraordinary ability; his mother is a native of Randolph county, Missouri, and a daughter of Judge Joseph Turner, who was a native of Tennessee, whose parents were from North Carolina, and whose ancestors were Irish.
"The Christian culture and training from his mother he prizes above all the wisdom of the philosophers; and ‘the inflexible, Roman-like character of his grandfathers is the best part of the family inheritance.’
"In early boyhood, studious and thoughtful beyond his years, his parents determined to give him a thorough education, that he might attain to that distinction and usefulness of which he seemed to give promise. His home culture and early school training were all that could be desired at the hands of fond parents and able teachers. He entered McGee College, Missouri, in the fall of 1866, standing at the head of his classes in the sciences and the mathematics. His mathematical instructor here, Prof. W. J. Patton, said of him: ‘In the class-room I feared Lowry, for I felt that he was more than a match for me, with his wonderful mathematical genius; and many times I found the teacher taught by the learning learner.’ Desiring to pursue a more thorough course in the physical sciences and the mathematics than McGee College offered, he entered the junior class of the Missouri State University at Columbia, in the fall of 1868; he graduated from the University in June, 1870, and was awarded the first honor in the scientific department, and also, in a competitive examination on international and constitutional law, won the ‘law prize,’ receiving the degrees of bachelor of science and normal graduate. President Read testified to the accurate learning and marked ability of young Lowry in pursuing the subleties of the law. He said to the senior class: ‘Gentlemen, when Lowry speaks, it makes me think;’ and turning to young Lowry, he added: ‘Lowry, that is the highest compliment that I could pay you.’
"For his proficiency in mathematics (ranking first in his class), he was recommended by the University for an appointment as an officer in the United States coast survey, which he received October, 1870. He read medicine in his father’s office in 1865 and ‘66, and during the summer and fall of 1870 attended lectures at St. Louis Medical College, but gave up his medical studies in order to devote his time to the more congenial pursuits – surveying and engineering on the United States coast survey. From 1870 to 1877 he was on the Atlantic, gulf and Pacific coasts, actively engaged on the United States coast survey, in the following classes of field-work: Hydrography, topography, primary triangulation, magnetics, reconnoissance for primary triangulation, latitudes, azimuths, and also chronometer and telegraphic longitudes. During these active and arduous labors he found time to exercise his inventive genius in bringing order out of chaos in the science and art of hydrographic surveying. His discovery of new and improved methods in hydrographic surveying, and his invention of sextants and protractors more perfectly adapted to the wants of the hydrographer, and whereby one officer is enabled to make the measurement previously made by three, have introduced him to the hydrographers of all civilized nations.
"The sextant, as it came from the brain of Sir Isaac Newton, was imperfectly adapted to the wants of the hydrographer, failing to measure angles between 140 and 180 degrees, and also failing to measure two angles at the same instant. The hydrographers of England, Germany, France and the United States had studied for a half century to remedy these defects, but with only partial success. Young Lowry invented the following sextants which perfectly solved these and other problems: --
I. A sextant to measure any angle from 0 to 180 degrees without inverting the instrument, and while reflecting but one object.
II. A sextant capable of measuring two angles, one to the right and the other to the left of the central object, at the same instant; either angle being any size, from 0 to 140 degrees.
III. A sextant capable of measuring two angles in quick succession, without previously estimating their relative magnitudes, or inverting the sextant, or lengthening its arc.
IV. A sextant capable of measuring two angles in quick succession, and an interrange at the same instant.
V. The protracting sextant, which enables one observer to measure and plot two angles with a facility, ease and accuracy not now attained with two ordinary sextants, and one protractor in the hands of two observers and one plotter.
"He is the author of several new methods of hydrographic surveying.
"Some of the above are described in Volume XIV of the American Cylopedia, and all are described in the proceedings of the California Academy of Science, the ANALYST, the MINING AND SCIENTIFIC PRESS, of San Francisco, and the NAUTICAL GAZETTE, of New York.
"In 1874, Prof. Lowry was elected a member of the California Academy of Science, at San Francisco, and was an active and productive member, as the academy reports of 1874-5-6 will show. In August, 1877, he was elected a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. In 1878 he was elected a member of the Engineers’ Club of St. Louis. In June, 1873, the degree of master of science was conferred on him by his alma mater.
"In June, 1877, Prof. Lowry was elected professor of civil engineering in the University of the State of Missouri. The University, in June, 1878, conferred upon him the honorary degree of civil engineer, created the engineering department, and elected him professor of civil engineering and dean of the engineering faculty. Prof. Lowry was a delegate from Columbia to the Missouri river improvement convention, held in St. Joseph, Missouri, November 29 and 30, 1881. In September, 1878, Prof. Lowry was elected secretary of the University faculty for the school year of 1878-9, and was re-elected to the same important and responsible position for the sessions of 1879-80, 1880-1, 1881-2, 1882-3. ‘He faithfully and efficiently performed the duties of this position during the four years of his alma mater’s greatest prosperity, from October, 1878, to October, 1882; and then, though re-elected for session 1882-3, resigned the secretaryship in order to devote his undivided energies to the growing demands of the tree planted by his own hands – the engineering department of the University of the State of Missouri."
"In 1877, the engineering limb was engrafted on the academic trunk of the University tree; it grew from the first and flourished. As to the fruit it has borne, we quote from the report of he board of curators to the XXXI General Assembly of Missouri: ‘Young men have already gone out and are still going out from the engineering department of the Missouri University, thoroughly educated and trained from efficient service upon the great works of internal improvement and foreign commerce. Conscious of their individual strength in their profession, they have asserted their rights and assumed their places on road and railroad engineering parties, and on the surveys and improvements of the Missouri and Mississippi rivers, and which positions they now hold and adorn with honor and distinction.’ President Laws said, in a public lecture: ‘This school of engineering is a pillar of strength to this University, and an honor of the University and to the State of Missouri.’
"Professor Lowry’s great aim, never lost sight of, in this school has been to prepare young engineers to meet fully the demands of their profession in this the last quarter of the nineteenth century. To this end, drawing-room and field work are made to bear a large proportion to the theoretical instruction of the class-room, so as to unite manipulative skill with theoretical instruction, thus avoiding the fatal blunder of so many of our engineering schools, viz: attempting to teach the surveying and engineering arts without putting them into practice.
"A critic says, ‘Prof Lowry is never guilty of speaking or writing on a subject which he has not thoroughly investigated. He is a fluent and forcible writer, treats every subject he touches with clearness, frankness, and ability; is a learned and scientific educator, and a vigorous, clear, logical and comprehensive thinker practically in the department of education.’ For five years he has wielded his able pen in setting forth the merits of his alma mater, in popularizing science and scientific pursuits, and in persuading the young men of the West to seek educations for a purpose. In these efforts he has been untiring; seed-thoughts, looking to a useful and steady development of the American mind, keeping pace with the march of science and philosophy, have been sown broadcast through lectures, pamphlets, and the daily press, and cannot cease to vivify, though the source may be lost sight of. He has never failed to command the close attention and hearty approval of the thinking public. As an indication of the spirit with which the productions of his pen are received, we quote a written opinion by the lamented J.K. Rogers, LL. D.: ‘I have read Prof. Lowry’s lecture on ‘The Professional School in the American University’ through and through with interest and pleasure, and it has my hearty endorsement and approval. It is a live, wide-awake lecture, full of enthusiasm and vim, abreast of the times, and with its face set in the right direction. It is an admirable plea for the particular department its author represents, and cannot fail to do good for the University and make reputation for its author. As a plea for the sciences and for professional education it is unanswerable, and no one ought to want to answer it. I must congratulate Prof. Lowry upon the success of this lecture, and upon the success of the engineering department.; Another critic says: ‘Prof. Lowry is a man of great ability, unquestioned genius, wonderful energy, throughly up in his profession, fostered under the administrtion of that most powerful intellect of this or any other age, Dr. S.S. Laws.’
"Prof. Lowry is a man of not quite medium height, nervous-sanguine temperament, dark auburn hair, grayish brown eyes, with determination written on every feature, and is in the prime of a fresh and vigorous young manhood. He has all those qualities which thoroughly individualize a man and is a most decided type of himself. He is a Missourian to the manner born – with him it is ‘Missouri first – the world afterwards.’ We close this sketch with the closing paragraph of a lecture he delivered on ‘Engineering in Missouri:’ ‘My heart is in this cause. My soul is in this work. My life and energies are consectrated to building up the cause of the exact arts in Missouri. I owe my all to this University, and I want no more glory while I live, no more glorious heritage when I come to pass over the great river, no more lasting monument, no prouder epitaph than that I was instrumental in building up the exact arts, in this my alma mater in this, my native state.’"
"Was born at Rochester, New York, in the month of April, 1817. When he was two years old, his father moved with his family to a farm two miles from Rochester, and Robert was reared to agricultural pursuits. His education was acquired in the common schools and at Monroe High School at Henrietta in Monroe county, New York. He began teaching in the public schools at nineteen years old, and later in life worked at the carpenter’s trade, which was his father’s vocation, in addition to farming. In 1840 he came to Boone county, Missouri, and began teaching in the public schools, following it for some six or seven years. He was first married December 27, 1842, to Miss Emilia M. Bishop, of Thrall’s Prairie. She died at Harrisburg, this county, February 9, 1875, having borne five children. Two of these, Alice G., wife of James A. Chambers, of Rocheport, and Robert L., of Marshall, Missouri, still survive. He was a second time married May 9, 1876, to Mrs. Mary J. Rawlings, of Rocheport. In the spring of 1849, Mr. Lyell went to California, and with four comrades, kept a boarding ‘ranche,’ and also worked the mines on Deer Creek, near the forks of Yuba River. On his return from California he settled in Rocheport, where he resided till 1871, when he and family moved to Harrisburg, where he was engaged for some time in merchandising, and was also fortunate. He was twice commissioned a notary public for Boone county by the Governor. In 1877 he moved back to Rocheport, where he resides at this writing. From 1858 to ‘79, he occasionally worked at the carpenter’s trade and as an undertaker, working at times, after the war, as many as from fix to nine men. In May, 1862, Mr. Lyell enlisted in the sixty-first regiment E.M.M., Col. Douglas commanding. Soon after he was commissioned quartermaster, with rank of captain, by Gov. Gamble. He served in that capacity till the fall of 1862, when part of his regiment was annexed to parts of other regiments and formed into the First Provisional Regiment of M.M., in which he served till the officers and men were relieved from duty by order of the Governor, in 1864. In August, 1864, he was commissioned Brigade Q.M., with rank of major, under Gen. J.B. Douglass, and thus continued till his final discharge from service by order of Acting Governor Hall. Mr. Lyell has served as magistrate of Missouri township, both by appointment and election, and is at this writing deputy post-master at Rocheport, having been appointed in 1881, by Mrs. Susan M. Slade, post-mistress."