Jefferson County Historical Society

Home - Biographies Menu


Capt. William J. Buxton, farmer, of Big River Township, was born in Manchester,
England, in 1832, and is the elder of two sons born to John and Elizabeth
(Ravenscroft) Buxton, natives of England, born in 1811 and 1812, respectively.
[For further particulars of parents see sketch of John Buxton.] William J.
was educated in the Manchester schools, and at the age of twenty came to St.
Louis, but in 1854, just two years later, returned and married Miss Mary Jane
Dillon, daughter of Patrick and Ellen Dillon. Twelve children were born to this
union, eleven of whom are now living. The year after his marriage Capt. Buxton
returned to Jefferson County, in 1855, locating in Meramec Township, and
in 1861 purchased the farm upon which he is now living. This consists of 500
acres of fine land, and is situated nine miles northwest of Hillsboro. At the
breaking out of the late war he took a firm stand for the Union, and in 1862 organized
Company E, Eightieth Enrolled Missouri Militia, which he commanded for
about two years, when he joined the United States service in command of Company
B, Forty-seventh Missouri Volunteer Infantry, and operated along the line
of the St. Louis, Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, and at Pilot Knob during
the invasion of Gen. Price. In 1864 he went with A. J. Smith and operated
from Nashville to the Alabama line. He remained in service until March 29,
1863, when he was mustered out at Benton Barracks, Mo. About the time he
was ordered to Tennessee he was notified of his election to the office of collector
of Jefferson County, in 1864, but having already been chosen captain of his company,
in which capacity he was then serving, he chose to remain in the service
of his country. Since the war he has devoted his time exclusively to agricultural
pursuits, at which he has been quite successful. He is a stanch Republican, and
his first presidential vote was cast for A. Lincoln, in 1860. He is commander of
the John B. Rahye Post, No. 314. at Cedar Hill. He was the founder of the Germania
Council, Union League of America, in 1863. The family are members of
the Catholic Church.