Benjamin Emmons

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Benjamin Emmons (May 11, 1777 – March 8, 1843) was a businessman and civic leader in Vermont and Missouri in the early 1800s. He served as a member of Vermont's state house, as the State Auditor, and in both houses of the Missouri Legislature.


One of numerous family members across several generations to carry the name, Benjamin Emmons was born in Woodstock, Vermont on May 11, 1777. He was often called Benjamin Emmons, Jr. to distinguish him from his father. His father, also named Benjamin Emmons, was often referred to as Benjamin Emmons, Sr., or Deacon Benjamin Emmons. The senior Emmons was born in Brookfield, Massachusetts in 1737 and died in Hartford, Vermont in 1811. Deacon Benjamin Emmons was a veteran of the American Revolution and a founder of Woodstock. He served in the Vermont House of Representatives for eleven years, as a Selectman in Woodstock, and in other offices. He was also active in Woodstock's Congregational church [1][2] and later in its Universalist Church.[3]

Benjamin Emmons, Jr. became a tavern keeper and was active in other business ventures in Woodstock. He also followed his father into Woodstock's civic life, including service as a member of the Board of Selectmen.[4]

From 1801 to 1806 he served as Vermont's Auditor of Accounts.[5]

Benjamin Emmons was a veteran of the War of 1812, having served as an Adjutant with the rank of Major.[6][7]

In 1814 or 1815 Benjamin Emmons, Jr., several of his brothers and their families moved to St. Charles County, Missouri.[8]

Emmons was a delegate to the constitutional convention that led to Missouri statehood, and was prominent as the only Delegate who publicly opposed slavery.[9] He also served in local offices including Justice of the Peace, and was a member of both the Missouri House of Representatives and Missouri Senate.[10][11][12][13]

Emmons died in St. Charles, Missouri on March 8, 1843.[14]

Emmons' descendants included Benjamin Emmons (1815-1885), who served as a Colonel in the Missouri Militia and in other offices, and Benjamin Linton Emmons (1861-1942), an expert on the history of early Missouri.[15]


  1. ^ Records of the Governor and Council of the State of Vermont, published by E.P. Walton, Volume 1, 1873, pages 239 to 240
  2. ^ Early History of Vermont, by LaFayette Wilbur, Volume 2, 1900, pages 373 to 374
  3. ^ History of Woodstock, Vermont, by Henry Swan Dana
  4. ^ History of Woodstock, Vermont, by Henry Swan Dana, page 582
  5. ^ Early History of Vermont, by LaFayette Wilbur, Volume 3, 1902, page 381
  6. ^ A History of Northeast Missouri, edited by Walter Williams, Volume 1, 1913, pages 566 to 567
  7. ^ History of St. Charles County, Missouri (1765-1885), Paul K. Hollrah, 1885, Chapter 6, pages 186 to 204
  8. ^ Missouri, Mother of the West, by Walter Williams and Floyd Calvin Shoemaker, published by American Historical Society, Inc., Volume 5, 1930, page 66
  9. ^ St. Louis Enquirer, May 10, 1820
  10. ^ A History of the Pioneer Families of Missouri, by William Smith Bryan, Robert Rose, William Wilson Elwang, 1876, page 149
  11. ^ Encyclopedia of the History of Missouri, edited by Howard Louis Conard, 1901, page 424
  12. ^ Missouri the Center State: 1821-1915, by Walter Barlow Stevens, 1915, page xxxi
  13. ^ Missouri Historical Review, by State Historical Society of Missouri, Volume 15, 1921, page 250
  14. ^ Portrait and Biographical Record of St. Charles, Lincoln and Warren Counties, Missouri, published by Chapman Publishing, Chicago, 1895, page 176
  15. ^ St. Charles Daily Banner-News, March 23, 1942
Political offices
Preceded by
Seth Storrs
Vermont Auditor of Accounts
Succeeded by
Alex Hutchinson