Jefferson County Historical Society

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C. M. Kerckhoff, an extensive breeder of thoroughbred Alderney cattle,
and dairyman and farmer of Joachim Township, was born in Prussia in 
1818, and is the son of Peter and Mary (Hosseach) Kerckhoff, who came 
to the United States in 1846, to St. Louis, and soon after to Jefferson
County.  The father went to Cape Girardeau, where he died soon after.
He was a wheelwright by trade.  The mother died in Jefferson County. 
The subject of this sketch received a good common school education, and
at the age of sixteen learned his father's trade.  In 1838 he married
Miss Louisa Rige, who bore him twelve children.  In 1845 he came to the
United States and spent three years in St. Louis in a foundry at that
place, where he lost his left arm.  In 1848 he came to Jefferson County
and here his wife died in 1867.  He was afterward married to Louisa
Teber, and to this union was born one child.  The second wife dying in 
1869, he then married Miss Louisa Stading, who bore him seven children.
When he first came to Jefferson County Mr. Kerckhoff purchased 1,200
acres, about six miles west of Pevely, but three years later he sold 
this property and settled on his present farm, which consists of 485
acres of as good land as is to be found in the county.  For many years
he has been quite extensively engaged in breeding Alderney cattle, and
has now about eighty head in one of the finest herds in the county. In
1866 he erected a large flourmill on Franklin Avenue, St. Louis, which 
he operated for four years.  The mill was then burned; another was
erected, which he operated one year and then broke up, losing $60,000.
He is a man of good business ability, energetic and persevering, and is
a money making man.  He ships butter to St. Louis, on an average from 
300 to 600 pounds per week, churning by horse power in winter and by an
engine in summer, and has the modern process of seperating the cream
from the milk, making very extensive and complete works.  He prepares
the feed for his cattle all by machinery, and has an engine for cutting
his hay as well as one for operating his churn.