Buena Vista Township lies in the most
southeastern part of Clayton County, on the banks of
the Mississippi River. The surface is undulating, and
the soil a deep, rich black loam, which is mostly
under cultivation. The village of Buena Vista was
laid out in 1851, but prior to that time there had
been several hundred men engaged in mining in this
vicinity, who had their furnaces here, where they
melted their lead, as early as 1848.
The first settler in the
township was Syrus Henderson, and he was followed by
Robert Bunker (now deceased), Joseph Heinrich and
William Foster, who still reside in Clayton County. The
first school house in the township was built by
George Cleaveland for a dwelling, but was purchased
by the district for school purposes. Miss Mary
Shipton was the first teacher. She is now deceased.
In 1879 a fine brick school-house was erected at a
cost of $1,800. There are two other buildings, one a
frame, the other a log structure, the total value of
the three being $2,800. The number of pupils enrolled
in the year 1881 ws ninety-five. The present School
Directors are: R. Meuth, Herman Albart and John
Laern; the present Secretary is E. Merkle, and the
Treasurer, Charles Cook.
The first marriage
solemnized in the township was that of Charles
Hoffman and Cordelia Anthonly. The first death was
that of Mr. Cook. The first Justice of the Peace was
Joseph Reynolds, who served most acceptably several
years. Barry White preached the first sermon.
The present township
officers are as follows: W. C. Stoddard, Justice of
the Peace; R. Meuth, Clerk; R. Meuth, Henry Kmamm and
Henry Hinkle, Trustees; A. Voggenthaler, Assessor.
Among the principal business
interests of Buena Vista is the firm of R. & E.
Meuth, general merchants. They embarked in their
present business here in 1857, and in 1860 erected a
fine large store, which they now occupy. It is 34x100
feet, and three stories in height. They carry a
complete stock of goods, valued at $6,000. They
formerly dealt extensively in grain, but of late
years have carried on the mercantile business
exclusively. R. Meuth is the present Postmaster at
Buena Vista, and the first also acts as express
agents at the station.
The Buena Vista Cemetery is
located in the upper portion of the township.