This home was built for George Barnard and his wife Attella Jackson circa 1869.
This home was built for George Barnard and his wife Attella in 1869. It was constructed on land that Attella had been given by her father, Julius C. Jackson. She was the eldest daughter of Julius and Harriet McCreary Jackson, born May 28, 1820 in Kentucky. George Barnard was born on November 27, 1814 in Albany, NY to parents Joseph and Tirzah Stebbins Barnard. He married Attella on July 16, 1840. He amassed a fairly significant wealth by working as a steamboat captain. His estate was worth approximately $150,000 when he died 1 which would be close to $3 million in 2021.
At the time of construction, this home was just outside of the city limits of Louisiana. It is made of brick and has a main section with six rooms and an ell of six rooms. It features a combination of Greek Revival and Federal architectural styles. It has a large colonnade on the front of the house with Doric columns. The cost to build the home was approximately $12,000. It was one of the finest residences of the time along with his brother -in-law James Carstarphen’s home that was completed around the same time. 2
Obituary for George Barnard – Louisiana Press Journal – July 8, 1890
“George Barnard was born on the 27th of November, 1814, in Albany, New York. He was the fifth son on Joseph Barnard and Tirzah Stebbins Barnard, both of Deerfield, Mass. While yet an infant his parents moved to Philadelphia, Penn., where his father engaged for several years in the manufacturer of plows, edge tools, etc. on the corner of Arch and Eleventh Streets. He was raised and educated in Philadelphia. he quit school, however, at the age of 14 years and began clerking in the dry goods house of John Johnston at No. 14 North Second Street, and remained there three and a half years then clerked for other parties, viz., Isaac G. Turner on Market Street and with Chas. Barnard, his brother, a short time, then went into the dry goods business on his own account. Having a little capital he soon found it would not pay, closed out the stock, and at the age of 19, in the fall of 1835, he left Philadelphia for St. Louis, then looked upon as “the wilderness of the west.” Two older brothers, Charles and John, had preceded him in the spring; and Charles wife and two children now accompanied him west. These brothers established one of the first drug stores in St. Louis, and his brother, John H. Barnard, continued the drug business until his death in 1875.
When asked on leaving home when he would return, he replied, “not forever.” He landed at the foot of Front Street, St. Louis, after a four week trip from Philadelphia. The water in the Ohio River being very low at that season, on a dark and rainy September night, stumbling over the narrow, uneven sidewalks, lighted only by a few lard oil lamps, hitting cellar doors and hitching posts, he made his way home six squares to Mrs. Turpin’s boarding house. After two weeks stay, finding nothing to do, no business, everything dull, and as he said “it being a case of bread and butter with him,” hearing that Mr. Thos. William of Hannibal, Mo., of the firm of Williams & Shropshire wanted a clerk, he went to Hannibal and engaged for a year in a general county store consisting of dry goods, groceries, hardware, etc., at a salary of $100 a year and board. Before the year was up Mr. Williams proposed to raise his salary; but he refused to accept a raise, saying that he would work for the stipulated price as long as he remained with him. At the end of fifteen months service in Mr. Williams employ he made arrangements to go on the river. In January, 1837 he shipped as clerk on the “Envoy”, a boat running on the lower Mississippi River and on the Red River trade running to Natchez. At the end of eleven month’s service as clerk on the “Envoy” he resigned his position, came to St. Louis and embarked as clerk on the “Astoria”, a boat on the Missouri and lower Mississippi River trade running up the Mississippi river as far as Keokuk, and up the Missouri River as far as Weston. At the end of six months he resigned this position and hired as clerk on the “H. L. Kinney,” a boat running from New Orleans to Cincinnati, Ohio. He staid on her ‘till she sunk at Devil’s Island, between Cairo and St. Louis, early in 1838. In this boat he held a small interest, in company with his brother-in-law, Thos. Fithian. He and Capt. Fithian bought the old “St. Peters” a mountain boat bought by the American Fur Company, and ran it up the Missouri and Yellowstone Rivers in the fur business.
In 1839 they took her to St. Louis and ran in the upper Mississippi trade from St. Louis to Keokuk and Galena. The boat was owned and commanded by himself and Capt. Fithian, they acted as captain and clerk on alternating trips. They ran it this way for over a year. They then put the machinery of the old St. Peters into the Boreas, which he and Capt. F. had built in the winter of 1840 and 1841 at Elizabethtown, Pa., near Pittsburgh, on the Monongahela River. They ran the Boreas in the St. Louis and Keokuk trade and carried the United States mail for the first time by river from St. Louis to Keokuk. Theirs was the first contract ever made by the government for carrying the United States mail by water from St. Louis to Keokuk. They made two trips a week in 1840 and ‘41. They ran the Boreas until 1844 or ‘45 when they sold her out of this trade; the business requiring a better boat. They built Boreas No. 2 at Elizabethtown, he and Fithian superintending her construction. She was built for a fast boat, but finding she drew too much for the Mississippi river trade they changed her to the Missouri and Ohio river trade and ran from New Orleans to Cincinnati or western Missouri, as the stage of the water suited, and sometimes ran her up the Illinois River to the head of navigation; he still commanding and clerking alternately until she burnt on the Missouri about a half mile below the town Herman, in 1847. He then embarked in the iron business in St. Louis in 1848 and built the Boreas No. 3 the same year. This boat he ran in the lower Mississippi, Missouri and Ohio river trade as high as Cincinnati. Boreas No. 3 was burned in the great fire at St. Louis on the night of July 4th, 1849, when a score of boats went up in smoke and when the cholera was raging at it’s worst. During the same month, he lost a little boy, Julius, three years old, of cholera. After the fire, while Capt. Fithian and he were still in the iron business, Capt. Fithian said to him one day, “George, we must have another boat.” So they built the Pacific expressly for the New Orleans trade to St. Louis.
This was the later part of 1848 or early in 1850. He commanded her and his brother James Barnard, was clerk. He then left Capt. Fithian in command and made his brother James a partner and a clerk, and he left the river and as he said, “went ashore.” She sunk three or four years later near Natchez. On leaving the river by the advice of Dr. Pallen, his family physician, he rented out his residence on Morgan Street between Tenth and Eleventh Streets and moved to the Shurl’s place, a fine fruit farm, four miles below St. Louis. Here he resided with his family two years. He then bought a farm near Louisiana, Mo., of Cortez Jackson and removed from St. Louis County to that farm in order to benefit his wife’s health in 1864, and soon afterward went out of the iron business. All his boats were insured, but not for over two-thirds their cost and hence he lost heavily each time. He was the father of eight children, two of whom survive him, viz: Mrs. Dr. C. [Clayton] Keith of this city [Louisiana, Mo.] and Mrs. Julia Chadwick of San Francisco. The other six children all died in infancy, aged from a few months to four years each.”
“Mrs. Attella J. Barnard, oldest child of Julius C. Jackson, born May 28, 1820, in Kentucky, died May 25, 1896 at her home in Louisiana, Mo. Married Capt. George Barnard of St. Louis, July 16, 1840, at Louisiana, Mo. Spent ten years of her married life in St. Louis while her husband was actively engaged steam boating on the Mississippi; the last forty years at her home in Louisiana, Mo., where she enjoyed the love and affection of her devoted husband, children and grand children.
She was a woman of rare culture and refinement; blending the simplicity of the child with the learning of the scholar. She was a woman of decided convictions on all matters religious, moral and social. She was constantly abreast of the age on all the current topics of the day, whether in literature, science or art.
Her minister said, “She was a wise woman, and it gave her pleasure to converse with her. Her benevolences were always wisely chose. No words of mine can picture the faith in a living loving Providence that made her life sublime.” Her charities were never known to the public and yet they were many. A lady that had known her intimately for forty years said: “Mrs. Barnard was the most refined person I ever knew. I never heard an insinuation of coarseness from her in my life.”
On her golden wedding day, July 16, 1890, in the quiet of her home, alone with God and her two little grandsons, she penned the following: ;Fifty years! Can it be! What years to prepare! Have they spent in caring for this or the next life? Have your sorrows chastened and by the grace of God, drawn you nearer the great Father? Where are those with whom this afternoon fifty years ago was spent? Have you hope of meeting them with the beloved Companion of nearly fifty years? Surely such devotion as his has from Him who giveth all good. O, God help me to look in faith and cheerful hope to the life beyond.”
These reflections are reproduced that others may judge what an influence the religion of Christ had on her heart for more than fifty years. Her opportunities for acquiring general knowledge during her married life were most favorable. Each day her husband usually spent an hour or more reading to her from some favorite author or magazine while she “enjoyed absolute rest,” as she expressed it, “free from care.”
She was the mother of eight children, six of whom passed away in early childhood. The other two, Mary [Barnard] and Julia [Barnard] are still living. Julia [Barnard] the youngest child married Frank R. Chadwick and lives in Oakland, California. Mary [Barnard], born in 1850 married Clayton Keith and lives at the old homestead at Louisiana, Mo. She is the mother of four children, viz: Dr. Barnard C.[Keith] and Dr. William F. [Keith] of St. Louis; Leon G. [Keith] of East St. Louis and Attella J. [Keith].
The writer desires to place himself on record that no man ever had a kinder, more considerate or thoughtful mother-in-law’ than she.
In 1872, I met Mr. Hindman of Keokuk, Iowa, on a R.R. train out of St. Louis. He inquired if I knew Capt. Barnard and family of Louisiana, Mo. I said I did. He said: “His family and that of his brother, Charles Barnard, and my family were all very intimate while we lived in St. Louis, as intimate as if we were kinsfolk. I remember ‘that Mr. and Mrs. Barnard lost several beautiful children in infancy and childhood. I think there were five or six of them, three girls and three boys. All little children are sweet but these were exceptionally beautiful, I remember their faces as well as if they were my own children. We are Methodists, the Barnards are Christians, but we both share the same belief in reference to the fate of those little innocents, the sentiment so well expressed by Mrs. Hemans, ‘Tis sweet in childhood to give back the spirit to it’s Maker, ‘ere sin has placed the stamp of guilt upon the soul.’ And we rejoice that each little innocent has escaped a world of temptation and evil, Their names were as follows:
Anna [Baranard], aged 1 year, months and 10 days.
Julius [Barnard], aged 3 years and 10 months.
Maria [Barnard], aged 3 years, 4 months and 27 days.
Harriet [Barnard], aged 17 days.
Thos. Fithian [Barnard], aged 5 months and 8 days
A son, aged 3 hours.
Five of their little bodies rest beneath the spreading oak in the Jackson cemetery near Louisiana, the sixth sleeps in the Barnard lot in Bellefontaine cemetery near St. Louis, awaiting the resurrection morn.” 3