Winner of the 2005 Fred Kniffen Book Award Winner of the 2006 Missouri Endowment for the Humanities' Governor's Book Award
Matthews: The Historic Adventures of a Pioneer Family is the first full-length biography of the Matthews family in Southeast Missouri, which brings to life the individuals whose ambitions and perseverance have made an indelible mark on the region.
Spanning more than two hundred years and eight generations, the story of the Matthews family is an account of the birth of a nation, the settlement of the Louisiana Territory, and the subsequent growth and development of Southeast Missouri. Described in detail are events that have taken place in the lives of Matthews family members, capturing their personalities, their public achievements, and their private tragedies.
At the heart of the story is C.D. Matthews. Born a poor farm boy in the 1840s, he risked his life supplying corn and wheat to the South during the Civil War and went on to amass a fortune in banking, lumber, railroads, and land. As his holdings and his family grew, so did the region and nation around him, all part of the same expanding story—the good times and bad, the wild days, the tame, and the unforeseen.