Breckenridge, Missouri

Haun's Mill

One of the early events of historical significance to this area was the Massacre at Haun's Mill. Jacob Hauns built the mill on Shoal Creek about ten miles south of Breckenridge in 1836. At the time of the attack there was a mill, black smith shop, and perhaps a half dozen houses. About twenty families were living there, either in cabins, tents or wagons, some having recently arrived being in transit to Far West, a large Mormon town about thirty miles further to the west.

Governor Boggs had given the order for all Mormons to be driven from the state. After having camped about three miles to the north of Breckenridge, the Livingston County Militia led by Col. Wm. O. Jennings attacked the Mormons at Haun's Mill on the afternoon of October 30, 1838. In the ensuing attack all able-bodied men were either killed or driven off, as were the women and children. Seventeen men and boys were killed and twelve were wounded. The following morning the survivors returned and placed the dead in a partially finished well located near the mill and then departed for Far West.

In 1888, a son of one of the men killed during the attack, returned to look for the grave. He located the rock ledge on Shoal Creek and knew that it was part of the mill pond dam. He walked north easterly from the ledge of rock 13 steps and started digging. He soon hit clay and knew that he had found the well used for the gravesite. He placed the mill stone in an upright position over the well to use as a grave marker.

Around 1900 the millstone was found in the creek bed where it had apparently been washed into the creek. In 1925, some of the townspeople retrieved the millstone from the creek bed and placed it in the Breckenridge City Park. The original marker was donated by the Breckenridge P.E.O. Chapter AJ. The millstone is the only remaining relic of this event which occurred over 150 years ago. In May of 2001, the Breckenridge City Park Board and the Missouri Mormon Frontier Foundation placed an interpretive marker at the site.

For more information contact: Craig at , he is our resident historian and has access to lots of photos and memorabilia or visit their Haun's Mill web site.

Thanks to Joe and Tonya for submitting this photo and this article.

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