Stephen Chapman Biography


Connect With Others
Look-Up Volunteers
Family Outlines
Vital Records
Pictures & Postcards

Stephen Chapman, Son of Mary Evaline (Lindsay) and William Chapman
January 13, 1846 - June, 1914

Stephen Chapman, at present secretary of the State Board of Equalization, Jefferson City, was born in Dubuque, Iowa, January 13, 1846, and is the son of William and Mary E. (Lindsay) Chapman. The father was a native of the town of Newmarket, Canada, and the mother a native of Huntsville, Ala. The paternal grandfather, Stephen Chapman, was born in West Chester, Chester Co., Penn., and emigrated to Canada before the War of 1812. He remained there until after the so-called Canadian Rebellion in 1837. He then immigrated to Ogle County, Ill., where he regained his citizenship. He was a master-builder or contractor, and was a practical mechanic. William Chapman was reared in Canada, and was about twenty-one years of age when he came to the United States. He served in the Canadian army, and after coming to this country settled at Mount Carroll, Ill., where he was married in 1843, and shortly afterward removed to Dubuque, Iowa. From that place he removed to Rockville, in the same State, where he resided until 1849, when he returned to Illinois, settling in Ogle County, residing there until 1857, when he removed to St. Louis, Mo., and from thence to Washington County, in the same State, where he remained until 1862, when he returned to St. Louis, and from there removed in the same year to Clinton County, Ill., where he remained until 1869, when he removed to Patoka, Ill., where he resided until his death, September 30, 1879. The mother died in Clinton County, Ill., in 1868. They were the parents of six children, three now living: Stephen, Julia A. (wife of W.A. Hall) and Douglass. The father was a mill wright by trade, which occupation he followed in early life. He afterward studied medicine, and began to practice in 1860, and continued to do so until his death, in 1879. Stephen Chapman was about two years of age when he left Dubuque with his parents. He attended both public and private schools at Potosi and Caledonia, Mo., but the most of his education was picked up at leisure moments while at home, and he may be called a self-educated man. In his youth he learned the miller's trade, which occupation he followed for three years in his father's mill, near Caledonia, Mo. He then started to learn the trade of car-builder in the Ohio & Mississippi shops, but quit to enter the army. During the war he served in the Twenty-sixth Missouri Infantry Volunteers, United States army, and participated in all the principal battles in which his command was engaged, including the famous campaign against Atlanta, the march to the sea and through the Carolinas. He was mustered out in August, 1865, at Benton Barracks, St. Louis. He then went to his father's, in Clinton County, Ill., where he remained, and was engaged in farming until November 1866, when he went south, and was engaged about a year in the States of Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas, putting up telegraph lines. Returning home he remained at his father's house until November, 1867, when he came to Stoddard County, Mo., where he has since resided. He was variously employed in saw-milling, farming and school-teaching. In 1870 he was elected a justice of the peace in Pike Township, and county superintendent of public schools, which latter position he held for four years. During this time he held, by appointment, the office of probate clerk, and filled the unexpired term of R.M. Fraker (who was removed), as county collector. He afterward engaged in the mercantile business for about three years at Bloomfield, where he has resided since 1871. Retiring from business in 1876 he was appointed deputy clerk of the county court, and in 1878 was elected to that office and re-elected in 1882, holding the office for eight successive years. On retiring from this office in 1887, he was a candidate before the Democratic caucus for chief clerk of the House of Representatives of Missouri, but withdrew on the second ballot. He was appointed by the chief clerk, foreman of the Smooth Journal force, on his staff. This position he held during the regular session of the Thirty-fourth General Assembly. An April 19, 1887, he was elected secretary of the State Board of Equalization, and re-elected February 29, 1888, which office he now fills. He has been town councilman nearly ever since he has lived in Bloomfield, and secretary of the school board for several years. He has also been town clerk. December 24, 1868, he married Miss Nancy J. Pirtle, of Stoddard County, and to them were born five children, four now living: Clarence L., Olive V., Donald R. and Nellie M. Mary Eva is deceased. Mr and Mrs. Chapman are members of the Missionary Baptist church, and he is also member of the four bodies of York Rite Masonry, Blue Lodge, Royal Arch Chapter, Council of Royal and Select Masters, and Commandery of Knights Templar. He is also a member of the subordinate lodge of I.O.O.F. He has passed all the chairs of this order, and has been representative of the Grand Lodge, of Washington Territory, near the Grand Lodge of Missouri. He has served for many years as District Deputy Grand Master in both orders, and has taken great interest in their work.