Listed in Bible record as Alpheus T. Nelson. Thomas Alpheus Nelson
(Transcribed by Jim Thoma)
Thomas Alpheus Nelson, is one of the oldest of the native born pioneers of Cooper County, now living, retired, in Bunceton, Mo., and owner of "Eminence Stock Farm," situated a few miles northeast of Bunceton. Mr. Nelson was born Aug. 23, 1848, on a farm four miles northeast of Bunceton, and resided for 70 years within sight of his birthplace. He is a son of James 0. Nelson, one of the early pioneers of this section of Missouri.
James 0. Nelson was born in Virginia in 1802 and died in Cooper County, Mo., in 1861. He immigrated to Cooper County in about 1833, entered government land and improved a farm, upon which he reared his family of 11 children, as follows: A. M. Nelson, Boonville, Mo; E. D., deceased; Mrs. T. B. Stephens, deceased; Mrs. Nora Reavis, deceased; John Albert, and T. A. Nelson, twins, the former deceased; Addie died at the age of 21 years; two children, Henrietta and Maryetta, died young; James 0. Nelson resides in Bunceton. The mother of these children was Mary E. (Hirst) Nelson, who was born in 1809 and departed this life Dec. 25, 1891.
In the beginning there were seven Nelson brothers who located in Cooper County in pioneer days. Of these, Thomas W. Nelson became a merchant in Boonville. James 0. and John B. Nelson were farmers, the former becoming a large land owner. Henry and Addison Nelson were bachelors. Alexander Nelson located in California, Mo., and George Nelson.
Thomas A. Nelson was married Dec. 24, 1868, to Sarah A. Tucker, who bare him children as follows: Walter died in infancy; Louis 0. Nelson lives in Bunceton, Mo; W. L. Nelson is the present member of Congress from this district and resides in Columbia, Mo; Albert J. and Alpheus J. are farmers in Cooper County; Edgar C, editor and publisher of the Bunceton Eagle; Clyde T. Nelson is managing "Eminence Stock Farm.
The mother of the foregoing children was born in Cooper County, April 6, 1849, within sight of "Eminence Stock Farm." She is a daughter of Thomas and Mary B. (Taliaferro) Tucker, natives of Virginia and Kentucky, respectively. Mrs. Mary B. Tucker was a daughter of William and Nancy Taliaferro, who came From Kentucky to Cooper County, Mo.,
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in 1834. Thomas Tucker was a son of Josephus and Sarah Tucker. He was born in 1812 and died in 1893. He came to Cooper County in 1841, was married in 1847 and built up a splendid farm. He was father of the following children: Mrs. Sarah A. Nelson, of this review; W. J. Tucker of Kansas City, Mo; John R. Tucker of Oklahoma City, Okla; Mrs. Mary Bohling, Medford, Ore. William and Nancy Taliaferro were parents of six children: James, Robert, Johnson, Lucy, wife of James H. Baker, and Elizabeth, who attained the great age of 90 years. Thomas Tucker was one of the best known of the pioneer citizens of Cooper county.
When Mr. and Mrs. Thomas A. Nelson began their wedded life, they purchased a tract of undeveloped prairie land which adjoined the old Tucker homestead. In order to fence this tract, Mr. Nelson hauled rails with ox teams from Moniteau. Every tree, shrub, vine, and plant which now adorns the grounds of their fine estate was planted by Mr. and Mrs. Nelson. "Eminence Stock Farm" consisted of 364 acres, well improved with a large, handsome residence, good farm buildings, and is devoted to the breeding and raising of fine live stock. Mr. Nelson has always been an extensive feeder and producer of live stock. In 1882, Mrs. Nelson began breeding and raising fine poultry, mostly Barred Rocks and other varieties. She was the first woman to make a specialty of producing poultry of the better breeds and of pure strain. Mr. Nelson achieved a great reputation as a breeder of Duroc Jersey swine.
Dec. 24, 1918, Thomas A, and Sarah A. Nelson celebrated their golden wedding anniversary. When Mr. Nelson was purchasing live stock for the State Institutions same years ago, Mrs. Nelson managed the farm during his frequent periods of absence and weighed the corn and did a man's work on the place. They are bath members of the Baptist Church, as are all of their children. Mr. Nelson has been a deacon in the Baptist Church for 40 years and his son Louis 0. Nelson is also a deacon. They are among the most highly respected and best loved pioneer couples in Cooper County, and Mrs. Nelson is the source of authority in her neighborhood for facts concerning family history and is the last recourse for information concerning the early history of the Bunceton neighborhood. In September of 1918, Mr. and Mrs. Nelson made their first move in a half century. They came to Bunceton, after turning over the home farm to their son, Clyde Nelson, who is now managing it. Now, in the eventide of a long and useful life, they are enjoying well earned repose, serene in the consciousness that theirs has been a life well spent.1 Thomas
was born on 23 August 1848. He was the son of James O'Bannon Nelson
and Mary Elizabeth Hirst
. He married Sarah Ann Tucker
on 24 December 1864. Thomas died on 21 March 1921 at Bunceton, Mo., at age 72.