Jefferson County Historical Society

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Capt. Charles B. Tilden, of one of the Missouri River Government improvement 
boats, with headquarters at St. Louis, was born in Kent County, Md., in 1835, 
and educated at Washington College, at Chestershire, Md., after which he spent 
about three years on Chesapeake Bay.  In 1853 he came to St. Louis, where he 
accepted a position as civil engineer in preliminary survey of the St. Louis, 
Iron Mountain & Southern Railroad, which position he held for about four years, 
or until the road was completed to Pevely.  He then went on the Missouri River 
as a pilot, remaining there until the outbreak of the late Civil War, when he 
and J. W. Kenneth raised a company of volunteers, in Jefferson County, for the 
Confederate army, and joined Gen. Thompson.  After about two months Mr. Tilden 
resigned, and joined Gen. Price's army as a private, but was soon after promoted 
to the rank of first lieutenant of Gorham's Battery of artillery of the Missouri 
State Guards.  About a year later he was transferred to the Confederate service, 
and was made captain of Tilden's Missouri Battery.  Prior to his raid through 
Southeast Missouri, Gen. Price recalled him, to follow him and take charge of 
the captured artillery, if there should be any.  After the war the Captain 
returned to the river, where he was pilot, and commanded a great number of 
different boats, until 1884, since which time he has been in the Government 
service, as above stated, on the Missouri River, and has resided in Jefferson 
County.  He was married in 1867 to Miss Mary Albertine, daughter of James L. 
and Cassandra A. Dunklin, and granddaughter of ex-Gov. Daniel Dunklin, one of 
the pioneer governors of Missouri.  Mr. Dunklin was born in Washington County, 
but spent many years in Jefferson County as a well-to-do farmer and influential 
citizen.  He moved to Mississippi in 1887, and intends making that his future 
home.  Three sons and one daughter were born to Capt. Tilden's marriage, viz.: 
Mary S., Harry D., Alfonso J. and Charles B., Jr.  He was reared a Whig, and 
cast his first vote for Filmore in 1856, since which time he has been a stanch 
Democrat.  He is also a member of the Masonic fraternity.  His parents, Hon. 
Charles B. and Elizabeth (Stewart) Tilden, were natives of Maryland, where they 
spent their entire lives, as did several generations before them, so far as is 
known. The father was a farmer, and spent several terms in the State Legislature.