Samual Christopher McCall (1833-1922)
Samual Christopher McCall was born on 18 Jan 1833 in Franklin County, Virginia as the third child of Peter Holland McCall and Zilpha Hodges. He was born on his mother’s 26th birthday. Sam had six siblings, namely: John William, Robert Henry, Nancy Ann, Thomas Alexander, Mary Mildred, and James Franklin.
When Sam was about six years old, Peter and Zilpha moved their family from Virginia to Auxvasse Township, Callaway County, Missouri. So, Sam did most of his growing up in the relative wilderness of Missouri. A lot of the extended McCall family had also made the move to Callaway County from Virginia, so there were many relatives in the area.
When he was 27, Sam married Elizabeth A. Linville, daughter of Archilles James Linville and Martha Jane Wren, on 13 Dec 1860 in Callaway County, Missouri.
Samual Christopher McCall and Elizabeth A. Linville had the following children:
- Anna C. McCall was born in Dec 1861 in Missouri, USA.
- Zelpha Lou McCall was born in Jul 1866 in Missouri, USA. She married John Thomas Estes on 27 Dec 1883 in Portland, Callaway, Missouri, USA. She died in 1900 in Gallatin, Daviess, Missouri.
- Mary Mildred McCall was born on 04 Mar 1868 in Missouri. She died on 06 Apr 1911 in Fulton, Callaway, Missouri.
- James M. McCall was born in 1871 in Missouri.
Sam and Betsy, as she was called, lived in a volatile time in American History. A few months after they married, the Civil War broke out. It raged from 12 April 1861 until 9 May 1865. Missouri was a border state sending men and supplies to both the Union and the Confederacy. The McCall family had roots in Virginia and their sympathies were with the south. Sam volunteered and helped the south, supposedly by hauling stuff. He claimed to have been involved in the Battle of Boonville which was a minor skirmish that happened at Boonville, Cooper County, Missouri on 17 June 1861. There were not many casualties, but the battle was won by the Union Army allowing them to take control of the Missouri River and helping to prevent Missouri from formally entering the Confederacy.
The war ended and the family went on with their life in Callaway County. Sam was a farmer, but he didn’t own any real estate. These were not wealthy people. In the 1870 Federal Census, Sam was listed as a tenant farmer with no real estate and a personal estate of only $300 which would probably be the equivalent of a little over $5,000 today. Their neighbors were not much better off, with most other families in Auxvasse Township not owning any real estate either and having personal estates ranging from $50 to $500. There was one merchant in town with $9,000 real estate and $15,000 personal estate, and a handful of others with sizable estates, but they were the exceptions.
In addition to farming, Sam and his brothers were involved in buying, cutting and hauling railroad ties. They cut them and then hauled them about 40 miles to Portland, Missouri. They got ten cents apiece for the ties. They usually hauled ten to a load and once in awhile they would throw on eleven. That would get them an extra dime. It was said that at least Sam’s brother, Jim, would use that extra dime for a pint of whiskey.
Sadly, sometime between the birth of their last child in 1871 and the year 1876, Betsy died. Sam was left to care for four children.
When he was 43, he married Sarah Janava McClellan, daughter of James W. McClellan and Elizabeth Grant, on 04 Jan 1877 in Missouri.
Samual Christopher McCall and Sarah Janava McClellan had one son:
- Samual Christopher McCall was born on 22 Apr 1876 in Portland, Callaway, Missouri. He was called, “Pomp.” He married Eliza Jane Boyce on 23 Oct 1910 in Portland, Callaway, Missouri. He died on 20 May 1962 in Onawa, Monona, Iowa.
Sarah had previously been married to Henry Cartmill who died before 1876. Sarah and Henry had four children, Jane Ellen, James Henry, William Robert, and Delilia Elizabeth Cartmill. So, between the two, they had a total of nine children; four were his, four were hers, and one was theirs.
At the time of the 1880 Census, Sam’s widowed mother, Zilpha, was living with Sam and Sarah’s blended family in Callaway, County. In 1895, Sam and Sarah and grown children Mary Mildred and Samual were living in Jordan, Monona County, Iowa. Sam’s brother, James Franklin and his family, were living there as well. Sam may have worked as a wagon master / scout for a time, helping people move from Missouri to Iowa. In 1900, 1910, and 1920, Sam was back in Callaway County, Missouri when the censuses were taken.
Drinking was known to be a pastime and problem for Sam. One story passed down told that Sam once passed out in a snow bank after having too much to drink. When he was found, his hair had frozen to the snow and had to be cut to get him out of the snow bank.
Though he tried, Sam was never able to secure a pension based on his Civil War service. He could never prove that he had actually participated. For the last ten years of his life, he corresponded back and forth with the government, unsuccessfully trying to get a pension.
Sam’s second wife, Sarah, died 3 Nov 1909 in Callaway County, leaving Sam a widower once again. His daughter, Mary Mildred, who lived with Sam her whole life, died 6 Apr 1911 and his youngest son and namesake had settled in Iowa, so Sam was alone in Missouri. By 1921, he was an old man. He was blind and unable to work. The county judge committed him to the county poor house.
Samual Christopher McCall died on 03 Mar 1922 in Ham’s Prairie, Callaway, Missouri. He was 89-years old at the time of his death. He was buried somewhere in Callaway County.
Where is he in the tree?