Sunday, April 10, 2011
Jerico Springs, Missouri
While searching, I learned that my great great-grandfather Brandon Lafayette Brasher and his wife Sydney moved to Jerico Springs, Missouri where he worked in a bank. When the bank closed, he took his family (including my great-grandfather Claude Brasher) to Joplin where he worked on the railroad. Makes sense since Joplin was a busy, booming area at the time. However, it was all news to me since I thought all my “people” were from Kansas and Oklahoma. When I came to live in the Joplin area, I had no idea I already had such Missouri roots.
So I wanted to see Jerico Springs which is an hour, give or take, from here. We saw the town sign with a population of 259 as we approached a hilltop. The verdant area was gorgeous, and spread away from this knob was farm land that must have been dotted with wagons, barns, and draft horses in the 1800’s. Turning into the town, I saw only a berg of neglected homes and businesses. What must have been a thriving little frontier town at some point, was now very forlorn looking. Homes in disrepair, cars up on blocks, shattered and boarded windows, a flea market that had long been silent, and a bleak looking business center all contributed to the looks of a ghost town. There was a little city park and a lame looking post office that suggested hidden folks somewhere still called this place home.
It was sad and someday maybe I will go back and check again. I did not find the cemetery, and I would like to look there. We drove on through other small places in the road on our ride: Arcola, Plew, Red Oak, Avilla, and Irwin. It was sad to see all those towns and the stories they held fading away, returning to Mother Earth.