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February 22, 2015

Jones Brothers Mule Barn - Cassingham's History Warrensburg MO

NPS Form No. 10-900 OMB 1024-001 (Expires 5/31/2012)
United States Department of the Interior National Park Service
National Register of Historic Places Continuation Sheet Section Number 8 Page 6
Jones Brothers Mule Barn Johnson County, Missouri
Link Historic Sites
Jones Brothers Mule Barn
Warrensburg, MO
Summary: The Jones Brothers Mule Barn, at 101 N. College (Miller) Street in Warrensburg, Missouri is locally significant in the National Register Criterion A for significance in the areas of Agriculture and Commerce. It was built in 1912, Walter and Perry Jones, and served as the Jones Brothers Mule Barn Until 1932  it Then Became Cassingham & Son Hardware Store, and served in That capacity Until in 2008. 
Cassingham's & Son, Warrensburg, MO
Jones Brothers Mule Barn

About 1918, Horses From Warrensburg Shipped to the World War Front in Germany
In the early 20th century, a strong regional mule Market and the child's proximity to the Missouri Pacific Railroad helped the Jones Brothers build one of the better known mule dealerships in the state. Business peaked During World War I, When The firm is said to have shipped hundreds of mules a month.2 In the days before motorized transportation Became ubiquitous, mules were an invaluable part of military operations. Missouri-bred mules were Considered Among the Best in the World in the early decades of the 20th century, duck's of Thousands were shipped overseas During the World War I. The mule business Declined With the popularity of horse power, and the collapse of land prices Associated With the Great Depression point to a foreclosure on the children's property in 1932. Ironically, the next occupant of the building, Cassingham & Son Hardware, included a dealership and service center for the Sami kind of machinery That had hastened the decline of the mule business --farm trucks and tractors. The change in function was Accompanied by Modifications to the building That included the addition of front display windows and a recessed outdoor space. Those 1930s changes were The Last Alterations of note the building has seen, and It provides an intact link with agricultural commerce in Warrensburg. 
Cassingham's Warrensburg, MO
Jones Brothers Mule Barn
The period of Significance for the property begins with construction of the Mule Barn, 1912 and ends at 1960, the arbitrary fifty year cut-off point. Elaboration: Warrensburg is the seat of Johnson County, Which was established in 1834. The county was described in 1904 as "one of the great multi-interest counties of Missouri." 3 Those "interests" included sandstone quarries, the resort town of Pertle Springs and education.4 The educational focus came from the existence of the State Normal School for the Second District in Warrensburg, Which at the time had an enrollment of 1,000. That school later Became Central Missouri State University, and is now the UCM. 
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College Street, Which runs in front of the children, is named for That school. The 1904 description noted That Warrensburg had an important connection to farming as well as the Normal School. In praising the farms of Johnson County withtheir "ascending-rich agricultural acreage," the authors called them "second only to schools" In Their Influence. Livestock topped the list of agricultural products, with 1.3 million head of cattle and "horses and mules a little in advance of cattle." 5 Warrensburg gained a link to the National Transportation Networks in 1864, When The tracks of the Missouri Pacific Reached the town. Rail construction slowed due to the Civil War, and Warrensburg served as the western terminus Until construction resumed a year later. That rail corridor is still in use. A large sandstone depot built for the Missouri Pacific Railroad Currently does double duty as the depot for the Amtrak Railroad and the headquarters for the Greater Warrensburg Area Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center.6 Ready access to rail services and the rich agricultural land of the surrounding Countryside Helped transform Warrensburg into a regional shipping center for livestock and other farm products. By 1907, a stockyard had been established next to the tracks just east of the depot, and Several pilots on the northside of the tracks contained livery stables and feedlots thatcould accommodate stock waiting to be shipped out by rail. The 1907 Sanborn map of the  area shows That the block of Pine Street Directly located north of the stockyard had four large livery or livery and feed operations, as well as two blacksmith shops and a wool and hide warehouse.
1907 Sanborn Insurance Map, Warrensburg, MO
Jones Brothers Mule Barn at the corner of
N. Miller (College) and E. Depot, topside

1914 Sanborn Insurance Map
 It was just east of That Block That the Jones brothers built Their New Sale Barn in 1912. (See Figure 4.) They took full advantage of the location. They routinely used rail service to ship mules and horses That had been sold at the child or to bring in stock for pending sales. One local history even described the Jones Brothers Mule Barn as the "Largest shipper of draft stock on the Missouri Pacific system." 7 The construction of the mule child was not the brothers' first venture into the mule business. By The Time They built the mule kids on College Street They had just over a decade of experience breeding and showing mules. Walter L. and Perry A. Jones started breeding and selling mules around the turn of the  century, and by 1911 were being called "the most Extensive and Widely known shippers of mules between St. Louis and Kansas City. "8 A 1980s interview withtheir nephew, Keith Jones, Provides firsthand insight to how The Brothers ran their business; he worked at the children as a youth and was later a partner with Walter Jones. 9 Keith Jones recalled That Walter took care of the shows and ran the Sale Barn while Perry lived on the farms. (The plural is intentional; The Brothers owned some 2,000 acres of land at one point.) The recollection is confirmed by the population census records. In 1910, for example Perry was living on a farm in the Post Oak Township of southern Johnson County, and Walter was living in Warrensburg. Perry's business was described as "General farms," ​​while Walter's was Listed as "horses and mules" .10 The house Perry lived in near Cornelia was still standing in 1986, albeit long-vacant and in poor condition. The Same Property Also contained the foundation for a large mule stable distressed by the Jones Brothers.11 Walter L. Jones Showed mules at the St. Louis World's Fair in 1904. He did quite well at that event. While at the fair, he got what was then the highest price ever paid for mules on the St. Louis Commercial Alley, $ 250 per head.12 that price compares favorably to what was then the statewide average of $ 77.44 per head.13 He finns came home with a number of prize ribbons, Which he later described as' the biggest thrill of his life. "14 Walter Jones HAS even been given Indirect credit for helping to launch the use of the term" Missouri mule, "Which came into widespread use During The St. Louis World's Fair. According To An early history of mule breeding in Missouri: It was The Magnificent Exhibition of Missouri broad-and-reared mules at St. Louis in 1904 That Proved to the world the supremacy of Missouri mules in competition with animals from all parts. The teams were splendid, and the climax was Reached With The four and six-mule teams.  The six-in-hand were a sight worth seeing. Walter Jones of Warrensburg drove his team with Such skill as to take the crowd by storm, and the spectators yelled Their unstinted admiration for the intrepid power, and the well-mated beautiful six. It was at St. Louis on this occasion That the phrase 'the Missouri Mule' originated, or at least Became International. "15 That Same description noted That the Jones Brothers were one of two exhibitors of helpfull mules that" Created Such a furore [sic] on That occasion. "16 The favorable response to the Missouri mules exhibited at the St. Louis World's Fair Reflected decades of mule breeding in the state. Mules are the product of specific cross-breeding between jackasses and horses. A female horse must be broad to a male ass (jack) to produce a mule. The Product of a female ass (jennet) and a male horse is a Hinny, Which HAS Many of the characteristics of a horse.17 Mules, on the other hand, are distinct from horses Above and Beyond Their trademark longears. They are stronger and hardier That most horses, and said to pray more intelligently. Unlike horses, They are Unlikely to be overworked and will not overeat or drink. As one description noted "a horse can be worked to death; not a mule, it wont stop. If overloaded, the mule stopped; hence the unfair characterization of stubbornness. "18 Mules overpriced differrent from horses in That They are Generally sterile, Which required largescale mule breeders to work with jacks, jennets, horses and mules. Mule breeding and trading in Missouri had its genesis in the opening of the Santa Fe Trail in the early 1820s, When traders brought mules, jacks and jennets back from Their trips to Mexico. In 1832, They Returned withsome four hundred Such animals, and by the early 1830s, 1,300 mules were traded in a single season.19 Jacks In particular were prized in early trading, since horses were Already available and a single jack Could be broad to Numerous mares. Missouri Farmers enthusiastically took to breeding the hardy animals and the state developed into a center for mule breeding over the last half of the 19th century. The number of mules in the state rose from 60,988 in 1867 to 245.273 in 1890. When the Missouri had the Largest mule population in the nation.  
By the time the Jones Brothers built the Sale Barn in Warrensburg in 1912, there were 333,000 mules in the state and the "Missouri Mule" had developed an international reputation for quality.21 Mule breeders developed different types and sizes of mules to suit a variety of uses. Sugar mules, the most common type wide in Missouri, werewolf Among the Largest of Four mule types described in a 1921 article titled "The Mule as Ideal Farm Power." 22 Sugar mules were defined as standing about 16 hands and weighing from 1,000 to 1,300 pounds. The author noted that "this type Sells highest and is much sought after." Other formulation types described were draft mules, whichwere overpriced large, and well-suited for heavy work, and cotton mules, whichwere a little smaller. Cotton mules were 14.2 to 15.2 hands in size, and used for farming, especially in the cotton belt of the South. The fourth type was the mine mule, Which Could be any size of draft mule, as long as it was rugged enough for heavy work and well-broken and gentle enough to be used in the confines of a mine. It is likely That All Of Those mule types were sold by the Jones Brothers over the years. Perry Jones' daughter Dale remembered the brothers selling small pack mules and cotton mules, and overpriced recalled getting sugar cane from buyers That visited the children in the fall, presumably to buy cleaner mules.23 The Jones Brothers even had rare white mules That They Bought In Utah in 1920 and kept on Their farm.24 By the time the Jones Brothers Began construction of the Mule Barn on College Street, They had developed a solid regional base of customers. An article about Them That appeared in the Johnson County Star in 1911 noted That They were selling up to 100 mules a month by then and That the "Jones Brothers are known over a wide territory as Experts in Their Line and Who Are Square and liberal in Their Dealing with the large number of farmers with Whom they come into contact. "25 Their contacts were not limited to Johnson County however. Keith Jones recalled That while most of the mules They sold were "from around here in the country" his uncle Walter Jones overpriced traveled out of   state Mule sales and shows. 
Jones Brothers Mules, West Pine Street, Warrensburg, MO
Maybe heading for the train?
He recalled That Walter Jones thwart Went to Denver for sales and "also, he bought a lot of mules in Omaha. That was quite a mule market. "26 With that type of experience and an established business, Walter and Perry were able to erect an impressive and efficient sales baby on the lot north of Depot Street. The large brick child was oriented with its sloped roof perpendicular to the street, Which allowed for the use of pine stepped parapets on the end walls That Make The children look more like a commercial building than a Common Stock child. The formality of the façade was enhanced by the corbelled brick cornices and the large keyhole entrance doors. The hung windows and sandstone accents of the façade are overpriced more typical of commercial than agricultural architecture. (See Figure 5.) The efficiency of the building Appears to havebeen as Carefully Considered as its appearance. As experienced stock breeders, The Brothers wouldhave been quite familiar with the Functional Requirements for a Sales children, And they were probably up to date on the latest trends in children's construction as well. A comparison of the barn layout with horse kids plan published at the time it was built Shows That They paid attention to the most common Requirements Listed for a horse children: Good access to stalls, ventilation and a way to store and distribute feed for the animals . Although no original plan havebeen found, the existence of two large arched openings on the façade indicate That the barn was built with at least two wide interior Aisles, Which wouldhave allowed multiple rows of stalls and easy access to the animals. That easy access was needed for feeding as well as the Bringing Them into and out of the child. The Brothers Often sold more than 200 mules and horses per month and it wouldhave been important to be able to move them in and out Efficiently. Hundreds of mules would overpriced Require A lot of food and Generate a lot of body heat, making food storage and ventilation important features. The open loft and monitor roof of the Jones children provided bothering ventilation and convenient food storage, features Identified as requisite by the authors of children's pattern books of the day.27 As One book advised: "Before starting to build, put a little time in on the study of ventilation. "28 Several contemporary children's guides recommended louvered cupolas or some means of venting" the heated foul air "  common to stables.29 (See Figure 3.) The large number of pivoting windows used in the monitoring and along the sidewalls of the children wouldhave allowed almost infinite variations in the amount of air That Could be exhausted up and out of the loft. The loft also provided the ideal storage space for hay and feed, Which was overpriced recommended in children's publications. The massive pulley brackets along the edge of the loft opening made ​​it easy to move feed and hay from the ground floor to attic storage, and the wide front doorways allowed wagons to pull right into the barn to pray Unloaded. The loft retains Party of feed bins on the East End, as well as at least one feed chute. (See photo in Figure 3.) According To Keith Jones, The Brothers Grew Some of the feed They used on Their Farms and They were overpriced "one of the biggest buyers of feed around." 30 There are overpriced two large wooden barrels still in The building That Appear to havebeen used for moving items to the loft. Each of the barrels is fitted with a metal handle That is similar to the handle of a bucket. The handles can be locked in place while being raised to the second floor, then unlocked to swivel, Which Allows the contents to pour out while the hot tub is still suspended. It is likely That Those barrels were used to haul loose grain and other small items up to the loft. The pulley brackets also provided for an unusual type of mule training. Keith Jones recalled a common assignment That he and his cousin were given When They worked in the Sale Barn as youths. And then on Saturdays, we'd workwith These mules. They'd tie 'em on an alley and we'd have a pulley up on a rafter; And they put a big belt around us and Tie These mules close together on an alley and we'd walk back and forth, gettin '' em gentle and used to people bein 'around' em, and we were just suspended in the air there withthis pulley.31 The auctions themeselves were held in the street in front of the children. According To Keith Jones, "they'd block the main street right in front of the kids and sell 'em there."
Keith Jones, Warrensburg, MO
32 There Was Also An article in the Warrensburg Star Journal in 1919 That described a sale held in front of the children as "one of the Largest That HAS ever been held in this part of the state and would compare with any in the state." The author of That article noted That the street was  covered with sawdust just before the auctioneer went to work and That it took hours for the sale to ask completed.33 Many Of Those buyers were from out of the state. They shipped the animals They Purchased through the nearby railroad depot. An article on the Jones Brothers Mule Barn That appeared in the Bulletin of the Johnson County Historical Society described the shipping process Followed by the Jones Brothers: When the auction was over and the day's receipts were being counted, the mules and horses were Returned to Their nity. At 10 o'clock at night a house pony would lead the mules down docilely Railroad Street hill to the off track loading west of the depot ... .they would go to states like Georgia, Illinois, New York, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas. Some, Mainly the 'Sugar', even went to foreign countries ... 34 Many of the mules destined for foreign countries were Purchased by military buyers. Mules had been Extremely Useful to British forces During the Boer War between the British and the Dutch in the first years of the 20th century. Tens of thou sands of the mules and horses used in That conflict came from a Missouri town less than 100 miles from Warrensburg. The tiny town of Lathrop, Missouri just north of Kansas City was home to Guyton and Harrington, a Firm That shipped more than 75,000 mules and an equal number of horses for service in the Boer War.35 The Firm overpriced secured a contract with the British to supply mules During World War I, and the soldier to the military of other countries as well During That conflict. At Their height, They had facilities thatcould handle 17,000 horses and mules on a daily basis.36 That massive volume of mule trading naturally created a regional market, and did much to advance the reputation of the Missouri mule with military buyers from home and abroad . Mules were especially Suitable for military maneuvers, and were prized in the days before motorized transportation. Smaller mules were Useful for  hauling smaller pieces of equipment Such as machine gun carts, while the larger animals were used for artillery and munitions trains. They came to be valued by the American military for intelligence as well as strength and endurance. A "World Tribute to The Mule," written by the Quartermaster General of the United States War Department was included in the 1921 Annual Report of the Missouri State Board of Agriculture. That account praised the "powerful, upstanding" mules of the Midwest and noted that "while there was as much hee-hawing, kicking, balking, biting and other mulish tricks as might be expected, the army mule lived up to his reputation for Enduring , sacrificing and dying like a soldier. "37 
Another source noted That some 10,000 mules were killed on the battlefields of World War I.38 Like most Missouri mule-dealers, The Jones Brothers enjoyed a high demand for mules throughout World War I. Dale Jones remembered that "a lot of our mules were sold Directly to the US government right before World War I. "39 In 1915-1916 alone, the Jones Brothers are said to have shipped 6,500 mules and horses out of Johnson County. 40 Walter Jones traveled extensively During That time period. An article about him that was written in 1931 noted That he "has gained fame all over the United States and overseas as a mule dealer, HE HAS solar mules in nearly every state in the Union and in Spain as well." 41 The brisk business The Jones Brothers enjoyed During the war point to an expansion of the company, Which included an addition to the sale children and the construction of new buildings on the back lots to the east. They bought additional pilot east of the children in 1920, and by 1924 They had added the large rear ell to the original children, and constructed a complex of frame support buildings behind that.42 (See Figure 5.) The new buildings included a long hay storage shed, a blacksmith shop and a smaller group that was called the "hospital" Which was used for sick animals.43 The late 1920s brought a notable decline in the mule market. The end of the war Meant a sharp drop in the military market and at the sametime, trucks and tractors were becoming a significant source of power on the farm. 
An interview with Perry Jones' daughter Dale noted That after the war, "we still shipped out about three train car loads a week, but it just was not the Sami. Instead of the buyers coming to us, we went to the buyers. "44 She noted overpriced That as tractors Became popular, the mule business Declined evenmore. "People just started buying tractors." 45 That observation is backed up by a census figures. The United States Census of Agriculture shows That while the number of mules on farms throughout the countryside Declined More than 27% between 1920 and 1930, the numbers of trucks and tractors on farms Increased by a staggering 450%. (See Figure 8.) The trend Continued Into the middle part of the century. Between 1920 and 1950 the number of mules on farms in Missouri dropped from 295.778 to just 63.237. (See Figure 8.) Matters were made worse by rapidly deflating things land values. Farmers That had mortgaged land to gain operating capital found themeselves holding loans on property that was no longer worth the amount of the loan. The Jones Brothers werewolf Among That group, and Their nephew Keith Jones Wrong That the loss of land value had more impact on the Jones Brothers' mule business than a declining market for the animals: "Everybody thought They lost money on mules; but where They Lost Their money was on the country. They'd have mortgaged land for $ 100 an acre and it was worth $ 30. "46 Deed records show That the brothers mortgaged the children's property in 1930 for $ 12,000, possibly to help offset declining values ​​of Their farmland. (They had paid $ 26,000 to build the children in 1912.) They were apparently unable-to keep up with Those payments. The mortgage went into default, and the property was sold in a foreclosure sale in 1932.47 That sale did not completely end the mule sales by the Jones Brothers, however. They Continued to operate the sale business from the smaller frame behind the main children's children, and were still using That space When the property was mapped by the Sanborn Company 
in 1945.48 (See Figure 7.) Walter Jones went into business with his nephew Keith Jones after the big baby was sold, And they operated out of the back child Until Walter died in 1939. Keith Jones stayed on Until the 1940s, When he sold the business and  joined the Army. None of the frame buildings he and his uncle used have survived to modern times. The large brick Sale Barn took on a new function in 1933, When a forms the clerk of the Jones Brothers bought it and converted it to a hardware store. An article announcing the sale in the local paper was Subtitled "Building Widely Known in Central Missouri As a Result of Mule Sales Will Be Remodeled." 49 The remodeling project converted the building into a hardware store. The storefronts and retail showrooms were added to the northwest corner, and the southwest corner was modified for the vehicle displays and access. That work was done for Edwin W. Cassingham, who bought the property on May 11, 1932.50 Cassingham bought Only The pilots That Contained The Brick Sale Barn. The lots to the east That The Jones Brothers occupied in the 1930s and 40s were not a party of That purchase.51 The article about the sale shows That the child had've become a local landmark. IT CLAIMED That the "Jones children is probably one of the most Widely known buildings in Central Missouri." 52 Mr. Cassingham was interviewed for the article, Which noted That he had served as a clerk for sales at the children in years past. Cassingham was quoted as saying That Some Of Those sales had brought in more than $ 100,000 in a single day. Edwin Cassingham probably served as a clerk for the SalesOnly occasionally; he had a solid background in the hardware business When he took over the sale children. He had owned a hardware store with Estill least since at least 1910, and Mr. Stone May havebeen Involved With The Great When It opened in the new location as well.53 By 1940, the business was known as Cassingham & Son, after Edwin and his son, Chester Snider Cassingham. The business Retained That name Into the 1980s, although it was overpriced Commonly Referred to as Cassingham's. 

Although the nature of the business Conducted in the building changed When Cassingham's moved in, it is likely thatmany of Cassingham's customers had been there When The Jones Brothers occupied it. The hardware store catered to area farmers. An ad for the store that was published in the local paper in 1940 Declared that "Whether it's a camping trip or a neighborly chat  between farmers, the conversation will turn to Cassingham's. "54 (See Figure 10.) The offerings of the hardware store Reflected the growing popularity of trucks and tractors on area farms. Although They sold harnesses and some equine equipment When They first opened, They Also sold and serviced International fire trucks. According To Nat Cassingham, the recessed area and garage door That were added to the southwest corner werewolf Designed Specifically to accommodate Those trucks, Which he Referred to as farm trucks.55 He recalled overpriced That the harness line was closed out and the remaining stock was auctioned off Relatively early in the store's history. Other early advertisements for Cassingham's Show That They catered to truck and tractor owners at least through the 1950s. A 1939 ad announces a sale on John Deere implements, and in 1950, They had a big sale on Seiberling tractor and truck tires and tubes. 56 The building was home to Cassingham's Hardware Store, For more than half a century. The Cassingham family sold the business in the late 20th century, but Retained ownership of the building. The hardware store closed in the early 2000s, and Nat Cassingham sold the building to the current owner, Jason Elkins, in 2008. This nomination is the first step in a planned rehabilitation of the property. 

Significance of the Jones Brothers Mule Barn The Jones Brothers Mule Barn is a local landmark in Warrensburg. It played a Widely-recognized role in local history, and brought hundreds of visitors to the city in the early decades of the 20th century. The Jones Brothers sale business is Widely credited with giving Warrensburg a regional reputation as a "Mule Capital," thanks to the Thousands of mules That passed through its doors while it was a sale barn.57 eventhough mules Gradually faded from prominence in area agriculture , the community is still aware of the mule child's role in area history. A Cassingham's ad published more than 30 years after the hardware store moved into the building directed customers to "The Ole Mule Barn on College Avenue." 58 Nearly Twenty Years After That, The Doors of the distinctive keyhole entryway gained a new handpainted sign That featured A large mule's head and the words "Through These portals passed the meanest mules on earth. CMSU Mules. "That association HAS Continued to the present. The building is featured in a modern promotional brochure published by the Chamber of Commerce, with the note that "Warrensburg was Considered the" Missouri Mule Capital 'Because of The Horse and Mule Barn operated by the Jones Brothers. "59 The University of Central Missouri HAS overpriced long-recognized the connection. As noted in The Missouri Mule: His Origin and Times: "So great is the mule heritage of this city That its college athletic teams are named 'Mules' and 'Jennie'." 60 The University team inspired the paintings on the front doors into the 1980s. In 2008, the significance of the property was overpriced Recognized by outside sources. A Cultural Resource Survey of the historic core of Warrensburg Completed That year Identified this building as one of just 20 properties That 57 The city is Referred to in Several local publications as the "Missouri Mule Capital." (See "Our Heritage: Warrensburg, Missouri "Warrensburg Chamber of Commerce, Warrensburg, no date, p. 1.) While the statewide title May be hard to support, it is clear That mules were an important part of the City's history, thanks to the Jones Brothers. The Building has seen no changes of note since it was converted to a hardware store by Edwin Cassingham, and it looks much as it had for the past century. The original shape and footprint of the building remains intact, and most original windows and exterior doors overpriced survive. It is Clearly recognizable as The Jones Brothers facility, and it presents an intact link to 20th century agricultural commerce in Warrensburg. 

Cassingham's & Son, Warrensburg, MO
61 Sally Schwenk Associates, "Final Survey Report: Cultural Resources Survey-Phases I & II Warrensburg, MO" (Report on file with the Missouri State Historic Preservation Office, Jefferson City, MO, 2008), pp. 97-98. NPS Form No. 10-900 OMB 1024-001 (Expires 05/31/2012) United States Department of the Interior National Park Service National Register of Historic Places Continuation Sheet Section Number 9 Page 20 Jones Brothers Mule Barn Johnson County, Missouri SOURCES Ashton, John. "History of Jack Stock and Mules in Missouri," Agricultural History Series, Volume XXII, Number VIII. 1924. Bell, Wilson, Secretary of State, Official Manual of the State of Missouri. Jefferson City: MidState Printing Co., 1946. Billings, Josh. "Essay On The Mule," The Bulletin of the Johnson County Historical Society, Inc., Vol. 39, No. 2, September 1993, p 1. Bradley, Melvin, and Duane Dudley. "Recollections of Missouri Mules," Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Extension, 1991. (Transcripts of an Oral History Project.) Bradley, Melvin. The Missouri Mule: His Origin and Times, Vols. I and II. Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Extension Division, with the Missouri Muleskinners Society, 1993. Breeder's Gazette. Farm Buildings. Chicago: Sanders Publishing Company, 1911. Cassingham, Nat. "A Short History of the Mule," The Bulletin of the Johnson County Historical Society, Inc., Vol. No. XXXIX 2, September 1993, pp. 3, 6.. "The Jones Brothers' Mule Barn," The Bulletin of the Johnson County Historical Society, Inc., Vol. No. XXXIX 2, September, 1993, pp.4, 6. Chilhowee News. Oct. 19, 1906. Chilhowee News. Dec. 20, 1907. Christopher, Tom. "Cassingham's True Value Hardware Store, # 4." Historic Inventory Form, 1986. On file with the State Historic Preservation Office, Jefferson City, MO. Cockrell, Ewing. History of Johnson County, Missouri. Topeka, Cleveland: Historical Publishing Company, 1919. "EW Cassingham Buys Jones Children." Warrensburg Star-Journal. April 27, 1933. (Clipping on file with the Johnson County Historical Society.) Eli, Shirley. "Backward Glances." Warrensburg Star-Journal. Jan. 29. 1980. (Clipping on file with the Johnson County Historical Society.) Greater Warrensburg Chamber of Commerce. "Our Heritage: Warrensburg, Missouri," Warrensburg, no date. Hargis, Amanda, Commissioner, 1929-30 Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Jefferson City, MO: Hugh Stevens Publishing, in 1931.
NPS Form No. 10-900 OMB 1024-001 (Expires 5/31/2012)
United States Department of the Interior National Park Service
National Register of Historic Places Continuation Sheet Section Number 9 Page 21 Jones Brothers Mule Barn Johnson County, Missouri
Hiller, JCA, Commissioner, Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' 1910 Red Book ", Jefferson City, MO: Hugh Stevens Publishing, 1911. Hopkins, Alfred. Modern Farm Buildings. New York: Robert McBride and Company, 1920., Commissioner, Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics' 1907 Red Book ", Jefferson City, MO: Hugh Stevens Publishing, 1908. Johnson County Historical Society, Vertical Files of various subjects, including Several undated newspaper clippings. Lewis, Wm. H. Commissioner, Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Jefferson City, MO: Hugh Stevens Publishing, 1921. Maserang, Roger. "Jones Brothers Mule Stable # 157" and "Jones House # 158." Historic Inventory Forms, 1986. On file with the State Historic Preservation Office, Jefferson City, MO. Missouri State Board of Agriculture. The Missouri Yearbook of Agriculture 1921 Jefferson City: Hugh Stephens, 1921. The Missouri State Board of Agriculture. Annual Report, 1896. Jefferson City: Tribune Printing Co., 1897. "Missouri Mules and Horses in War Time: How a Small Town Missouri became a chief factor in the Settlement of the Late Boer War," Profitable Framing and Rural Life. St. Joseph, MO Vol. XII, No. 16, October 1, 1912. "Mule Team Brings $ 1,175 At Big Sale." Warrensburg Star-Journal. Aug. 20, 1919. Radford, William A. Radford's Practical Child Plans. Chicago and New York: Radford Architectural Company, 1909. Renner, GK "The Mule in Missouri Agriculture 1821-1950." Missouri Historical Review Vol. 74, No. 4, July 1980, pp. 433-457. Rozelle, Arthur, Commissioner, Report of the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Jefferson City, MO, 1897. Sally Schwenk Associates. "Final Survey Report: Cultural Resources Survey-Phases I & II Warrensburg, MO." Report on file with the Missouri State Historic Preservation Office, Jefferson City, MO, 2008. Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps of Warrensburg, 1907, 1914, 1924, 1945 . Smiser, Mary Miller. The Golden Years: 50th Anniversary Jonson County Historical Society. Clinton, MO: The Printery, in 1970.
NPS Form No. 10-900 OMB 1024-001 (Expires 5/31/2012)
United States Department of the Interior National Park Service
National Register of Historic Places Continuation Sheet Section Number 9 Page 22 Jones Brothers Mule Barn Johnson County, Missouri moaning, Ralph.

"Jones Brothers Mules," CMSU Mule Skinner. (Clipping on file at the Johnson County Historical Society.) The United States Census Records. Census Indexes and Population Schedules for Jonson County County, 1900-1930. "Warrensburg Mules Famous," Newspaper clipping from the Johnson County Historical Society, dated Dec. 7, 1965. "WL Jones Has a Birthday." Sept. 27, 1930. (Newspaper clipping on file with the Johnson County Historical Society.) "Walter Jones & Bro," Johnson County Star. June 23, 1911. (Newspaper clipping on file with the Johnson County Historical Society.) Williams, Walter. The State of Missouri: An Autobiography. Columbia, MO: EW Stephens, 1904. Interview. Nat Cassingham, grandson of the original hardware store owner, Edwin W. Cassingham. (Phone interview by Debbie Sheals 23.07.2010.)

The Missouri Mule

As Stubborn as a Missouri mule

Of according to, a "mule" is defined as "the sterile offspring of a female horse (mare) and a male donkey (jack)"; the cross between a male horse (stallion) and a female donkey (jenny) is called a "Hinny". The mule HAS long been valued as a hard-working animal, having strong muscles, a body shaped like a horse, and long donkey-like ears. While mules are Commonly Associated with stubbornness, They Typically only display this trait in times of confusion or anxiety; ordinarily mules exhibit a calm and obedient disposition. Male mules (horse mules or johns) and female mules (mare mule or molly) inherit the best traits from bothering Their sire and dam. For example, mules goat Their athletic portability from the horse, whereas strength and intelligence come from the donkey. Because of this exceptional inheritance, mules Became the perfect animal to serve in Several helpful capacities During military combat.
Photograph of soldiers working with a mule at Camp Clark, Nevada, Missouri. 1984.72.75

Lathrop, Missouri: The Shapes Mule Capital of the World

Photograph of Soldier Attempting to ride a mule.
Although the Union and Confederacy heavily utilized mules During the American Civil War, the industry was greatly diminished and took the Majority of the Reconstruction era to be reorganized. The Firm of Guyton and Harrington played a large role in reorganizing the Missouri mule industry. Well before World War I, Guyton and Harrington, located in Lathrop, Missouri, Began selling equine to the British During the Boer War (1898-1901). They provided Approximately 55,000 mules to the British. Because of the quality animals provided by Guyton and Harrington in the 1890's, the British Requested another staggering number of Missouri mules During World War I, James A. Burkhart and Eugene F. Schmidtlein state In Their book  Mules, Jackasses and Other Misconceptions , "The British prized the mule's military capability so much That They bought over 300,000 mules and horses from the Guyton and Harrington Company in Lathrop, Missouri. The English soldiers praised Their mules - 'Those bloody creatures so hard-hearted under fire.' "

Healthy as a mule ...

In the shipping animals by rail and by ocean transports, the British soon learned That mules were hardier than horses. In his memoir,  Horses, Mules and Remounts , veterinarian John J. Riordan discusses the questionable conditions endured by animals During transportation. "Some of the animals were running Temperatures of 106 [degrees] or more, and incredibly were friendlyness in open corrals subject to inclement weather and rain, Which of course resulted in many of the animals Developing pneumonia." In  Shavetails & Bell Sharp , Emmett M. Essin discusses how the catarrhal or lobular strain of pneumonia, frequently Referred to as "shipping fever", was Often Accompanied by pleurisy and Proved Particularly damaging to horses. He states, "[The strain] was especially fatal to horses Whose death rate was thirty-to-one Compared to That of mules."

While mules were Generally healthier than horses, mules Entered combat with at least one major fault, its unique bray. Mules had the propensity to bray at inopportune times, revealing the location or movement of his troops to the enemy. During World War I, some say veterinarians Performed corrective surgery on the mule's tail to preventable The uncontrollable braying.
Photograph of soldiers "putting a gas mask on a mule." 1981.16.65
American Army Mules

When the United States joined World War I in 1917, plenty of mules had been reserved for the American war effort. According To Essin, "At the time of America's entry into the war, the army possessed 27.624 draft and pack mules. Within six months, it had Purchased and trained 7.444 more for Duty in the AEF. By September 1917, 35.068 trained mules were awaiting shipment, yet a total of only 29.910 mules were shipped to France throughout the Remainder of the war. "

The First American Army mules arrived in France in July 1917 In the same convoy with the troops of the Sami outfit. However, Because of the high demand of American material aid by the French, the practice of sending animals withtheir soldiers prematurely halted. Alternatively, the French Offered to supply animals for the American Expeditionary Force in order to free space for the Requested Aid. When It Became apparent that the change would not be able to supply the Necessary Number of Animals, American Quarter Master sought and Acquired mules from across Europe.

While quarterback masters were not enamored with the foreign mules Because of the notable differences in size and strength, They Purchased more than 9,000 French mules, 6,000 American mules from Britain, and nearly 13,000 Spanish mules. In  Shavetails & Bell Sharp , Essin quotes QMG Henry G. Sharpe in saying, "there was no comparison between the small, poorly nourished mule secured in Spain and Those Purchased in Southern France and the powerful upstanding, mealy-nosed Product of the Middle West . "While the smaller mules were not as Desirable as Their bulkier counter-party, They were morethan Capable of hauling machine-gun carts, reliving the sturdier animals for heavier work in artillery and munitions trains.

By April 1918 the American Army had resumed shipping Missouri mules from the United States. According To Burkhart and Schmidtlein, another prominent Missourian owed a small part of his success as a military officer to the mule. "Harry S. Truman Achieved his officer status as an artillery officer Partially Because of his farm-learned skills into action mules and horses. In addition, Truman had learned the Effective art of cursing from his mule act background. "

Mechanization Vs. Mules
Photograph of a four mule teams pulling a load of supplies.
The Army used mules and trucks in similar capacities During World War I, Trucks, Preferred Only When mules were not available, needed Excessive maintenance from the rough terrain, thwart Became stuck in muddy conditions, and required large Amounts of Fuel for power. Because of These characteristics, soldiers still relied heavily on mules to move munitions and meals. Despite mules Proving Their advantage over motorized vehicles, the power and speed of trucks Replaced animal-power During later wars. In  Shavetails and Bell Sharp , Essin states that "by 1938 horses and mules had been replaced by motor transportation in most military units, including infantry. By 1940 the army maintained only two horse cavalry division, two animal-drawn artillery regiments, and two mixed animal and motor transport regiments, with an Authorized animal strength of 20,300, That is, 16,800 horses, and 3,500 mules. "By the time the United States Became Involved in Vietnam, the mule had retired from the American military service.


1980.47. National World War I Museum, Kansas City, MO.

Burkhart, James A. and Euegene F. Schmidtlein.  Mules, Jackasses and Other Misconceptions . Columbia, MO: Stephens College, 1995. 

Essin, Emmett M.  Shavetails and Bell Sharp: The History of the US Army Mule . Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2000. 

Guyton and Harrington Mule Company Collection. 2007,205. National World War I Museum, Kansas City, MO.

Riordan, John J. and John F. Riordan.  Horses, mules, and Remounts: The Memoirs of a World War I Veterinary Officer . Glendale, CA JF Riordan, 1983rd 

Signal Corps. Catalogue of Official AEF Photographs. 1981.16. National World War I Museum, Kansas City, MO.

Smith, Richard T. Collection. 1984.72. National World War I Museum, Kansas City, MO.

Nancy Jane Basham 
(February 18, 1920 - January 29, 2009) 

Nancy Jane Basham

Nancy Jane Basham, 88, of Bella Vista, Arkansas died Thursday, January 29, 2009 at her home in Bella Vista. She was born on February 18, 1920 in Warrensburg, Missouri to Chester Cassingham and Muriel Whitman Cassingham.
She was very active with the Girl Scouts When she was younger. She sang in the Community Choir in Warrensburg, Missouri. She moved to Bella Vista in 1988 from Warrensburg, Missouri. She was a member of the Christian Science Church of Rogers. She did in home nursing through her church.
She was preceded in death by her husband, David Ellis Basham, Jr. on June 3, 2000 and the son Richard Wallace Basham.
She is survived by two daughters, Judith Roberts of Warrensburg, Missouri, Paula Clifton of Colorado Springs, Colorado; one sister, Emily Cook of Zephyrhills, Florida; five grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild.

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