Gallatin Township Land Grants, Now Staley Farms

Updated: May 17


The history of Staley Farms began with John Horace Staley. Born in 1873 in Willard, Greene County, Missouri Mr. Staley had been involved in banking in Springfield prior to moving to Carthage where he became mayor. While living in Carthage, he became interested in the milling business as he continued in banking. Arriving in Kansas City in 1924, he began his feed business and dry corn milling the following year. He developed livestock and poultry feed and maintained his large farm where he raised pure bred Aberdeen-Angus cattle.

The Staley Milling Company made a number of feeds such as “Pig Kisses,” Chick Atoms” and “Karmels.” In 1956 after 33 years in operation, the firm was sold to Spencer Kellogg & Sons with whom the company had done business with for 30 years. At the time of the sale, Mr. Staley had plants here and in St. Louis with an annual capacity of 200,000 tons of feed and a corn mill producing two million bushels of grain a year. Not chicken feed, pun intended. The company served feed stores in 2,000 towns where he established warehouses.

At the time the Staley Milling company was sold in 1958, it was, “one of the largest independent livestock and poultry feed manufactures and dry corn millers in the country,” according to the Weekly Star Farmer. The company continued as a division of Kellogg & Sons with Mr. Staley’s son, Thomas as president. The Staley farm was not included in this sale. Mr. Staley died at the age of 86 in 1959.

Staley Farms homesites were first sold beginning in 2002 while the golf course was created, following the natural contours of the land, prior to homesites being made available. Staley Farms encompasses a four-square mile area that had a history prior to Mr. Stanley’s substantial industry, even prior to the establishment of Clay County in 1822.

Gallatin Township outlined Original land patents (grants) for this area, in the Gallatin township, were held by a number of early Clay County settlers such as Joseph Gash. Joseph moved to Missouri in 1832 and acquired his land grant in 1838. He not only farmed but served as justice of the peace for several years. His farming was likely made easier by his family; he had seven children.

The Staley Behind Staley Farm

The history of Staley Farms began with John Horace Staley. Born in 1873 in Willard, Greene County, Missouri Mr. Staley had been involved in banking in Springfield prior to moving to Carthage where he became mayor. While living in Carthage, he became interested in the milling business as he continued in banking. Arriving in Kansas City in 1924, he began his feed business and dry corn milling the following year. He developed livestock and poultry feed and maintained his large farm where he raised pure bred Aberdeen-Angus cattle.

The Staley Milling Company made a number of feeds such as “Pig Kisses,” Chick Atoms” and “Karmels.” In 1956 after 33 years in operation, the firm was sold to Spencer Kellogg & Sons with whom the company had done business with for 30 years. At the time of the sale, Mr. Staley had plants here and in St. Louis with an annual capacity of 200,000 tons of feed and a corn mill producing two million bushels of grain a year. Not chicken feed, pun intended. The company served feed stores in 2,000 towns where he established warehouses.

At the time the Staley Milling company was sold in 1958, it was, “one of the largest independent livestock and poultry feed manufactures and dry corn millers in the country,” according to the Weekly Star Farmer. The company continued as a division of Kellogg & Sons with Mr. Staley’s son, Thomas as president. The Staley farm was not included in this sale. Mr. Staley died at the age of 86 in 1959.

Staley Farms homesites were first sold beginning in 2002 while the golf course was created, following the natural contours of the land, prior to homesites being made available. Staley Farms encompasses a four-square mile area that had a history prior to Mr. Stanley’s substantial industry, even prior to the establishment of Clay County in 1822.



Original land patents (grants) for this area, in the Gallatin township, were held by a number of early Clay County settlers such as Joseph Gash. Joseph moved to Missouri in 1832 and acquired his land grant in 1838. He not only farmed but served as justice of the peace for several years. His farming was likely made easier by his family; he had seven children.

In 1821 another pioneer of the county, Clayton Tillery was awarded his land grant from the federal government. He continued to add to his property in 1828, 1833 and 1836, sometimes partnering with neighbor, James McDaniel. In addition to farming, Mr. Tillery was a magistrate for the Gallatin township for twenty years. During the Civil War he was a drill master of a company of militia and rose to the rank of Captain.

Major John Dougherty was a large landowner in the area, with his first land grant in 1839. He farmed as well as raised buffalos and stock on his plantation, Multnomah. The Multnomah mansion was situated on a hill in roughly he vicinity of the Staley Farms golf club and the Staley High School. Major Dougherty continued to acquire property in the county, leaving it to his sons on his death.

The land, once possessing rolling hills of farmland, turned to the cattle industry then into the neighborhoods we walk today.

By Chery Carr Holtman, Clay County Museum (information curtesy of the Clay County Archives, Liberty.)In 1821 another pioneer of the county, Clayton Tillery was awarded his land grant from the federal government. He continued to add to his property in 1828, 1833 and 1836, sometimes partnering with neighbor, James McDaniel. In addition to farming, Mr. Tillery was a magistrate for the Gallatin township for twenty years. During the Civil War he was a drill master of a company of militia and rose to the rank of Captain.

Major John Dougherty was a large landowner in the area, with his first land grant in 1839. He farmed as well as raised buffalos and stock on his plantation, Multnomah. The Multnomah mansion was situated on a hill in roughly he vicinity of the Staley Farms golf club and the Staley High School. Major Dougherty continued to acquire property in the county, leaving it to his sons on his death.

The land, once possessing rolling hills of farmland, turned to the cattle industry then into the neighborhoods we walk today.

By Chery Carr Holtman, Clay County Museum (information curtesy of the Clay County Archives, Liberty.)

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