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Elmer, Missouri - Early History
Orloff William Howe
(Reprinted from the History of Macon County, 1910)
Although he has been for only fourteen years a resident of Missouri and for that length of time directly connected with its industries and a contributor to its progress and development, Orloff W. Howe of Walnut township, Macon county, has been all his life a resident of the great Middle West of this country, as it is still called, and is thoroughly representative of the spirit and enterprise of that portion of the Union and the characterictics and tendencies of its people.
Mr. Howe was born in the state of Illinois in 1865, and is a son of William and Mary (Hill) Howe, the former a native of New York state, and the latter of Illinois. He therefore inherited from his parents the shrewdness, adaptability to circumstances and resourcefulness of New England and the all-daring sweep of enterprise characteristic of the Mississippi valley region, and in his career he has employed all the traits of both sections with great advantage to himself and pronounced benefit to the communities in which he has lived and operated. The parents came to Missouri in 1898 and took up their residence in Macon county, where they were actively engaged in farming and raising stock for a number of years. They are now living in Macon retired from active pursuits, but mingling serviceably in the social, intellectual and public life of the city, and highly esteemed by all classes of its people. Of the five children born to them four are living, Edward A., Orloff W., Charles L. and Ma Nettie, the wife of B. V. James of Decatur, Illinois.
Orloff W. Howe grew to manhood on his father's farm in Illinois and secured his academic training at the district schools in the neighborhood. After leaving school he passed five years working at the carpenter trade, then turned his attention to farming in his native state. He cultivated the rich prairie soil of that great state with success and profit until 1896, when the vast domain across the Mississippi from his former home attracted him beyond the power of resistance, and he became a resident of Missouri and Macon county. Here he has continued his activity and his success as a farmer and has risen to the first rank in his business in this county. He now owns 390 acres of first rate land and carries on an extensive and profitable business in raising stock for the markets. All of his land that is not required for grazing purposes for his large and valuable herds of cattle and other live stock, is under advanced cultivation and yielding abundantly to the faith, industry and skill he bestows upon it. He is a progressive farmer and studies the needs of his business in this line, as he does also in his stock industry, and applies the results of his reading, observation and reflection intelligently to every step of every department of his work, aiming in all to secure the best results attainable, and succeeding in doing this by keeping at all times the command of the situation.
Mr. Howe is also one of the leading stockholders in the Elmer Creamery Company, and is connected with other enterprises of value to the county and its people. In their welfare he has always been deeply interested from his arrival in the county, and to the promotion of it he has devoted both intelligence in council and great energy in action. In political faith he adheres to the Re]3ublican party with loyal and unwavering devotion and is ever ready to serve his party along wholesome lines of development with his utmost ability and best judgment. He has rendered the people excellent service as a member of the school board for a number of years. In fraternal life he is allied with the Order of Modern Woodmen of America and in religious connection with the Missionary Baptist church. Both his lodge and his church feel the force of his influence for good and liis active assistance, and his membership is highly appreciated in each.
In 1891 Mr. Howe was united in marriage with Miss Alice M. Alexander, a native of Illinois. Of the ten children born to them five died in infancy. Those living are Harry O., Nellie, Myrl W., Forest E. and Opal M. an infant, all of whom are still living at home and adding brightness and cheer to the family circle. The home is a favorite resort for the hosts of friends of the family, who find it a center of refined and gracious hospitality and of all the courtesies and amenities of life. The parents are held in the highest esteem wherever they are known, and regarded throughout the county as fine exemplars of all that is strong, useful and worthy in American citizenship.