Peach Blossoms Campbell, The Peach Capital of Missouri
 
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Old City Hall, 1940's        The City of Campbell has roots dating back to before the Civil War. It was founded with the arrival of the railroad in 1880-1881.
        Less than two miles northwest of the present city is the former settlement of Four Mile, so named because it was situated four miles from the St. Francis River ferry at Chalk Bluff, and four miles from various other important local points.
        During the 1850's the inhabitants of this little settlement petitioned for a post office, which was granted. The town consisted of a drug store, two or three general stores, several practicing physicians and a more than adequate number of saloons.
        During the Civil War, the little town saw many skirmishes of Union and Confederate troops, climaxing with a battle at Chalk Bluff in 1863. Following the war, the town settled down to its former quiet life. A Baptist Church and a Masonic Lodge (Four Mile Lodge No. 212), both now in Campbell, were chartered that same year.
Campbell High School, 1935 photo         Life was peaceful in Four Mile until the area was startled with news of a railroad coming. The line was built in 1880-1881, running two miles south of Four Mile. Merchants were quick to set up little branch stores to do business with the railroad work crews.
        Campbell started with the railroad and Four Mile was doomed. Within two years, every business there had moved to Campbell.
        Campbell flourished and during the 1890's it grew into a timber center. Sawmills and lumber companies dotted the town and one owner made a million dollars within a few years. Campbell was the most thriving town in Dunklin County until the timber was gone, about 1908.
        Following the disappearance of good timber, the community settled down as an agricultural town. Growth over the years has been relatively slow, but it has been steady. During the past three decades, while other Missouri towns of its size were losing population, Campbell continued its steady growth.
        The City of Campbell continues to look forward to the future. With its famous peaches, cotton and other agriculture, it has progressed to its current population of 1,883.
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Historical photos by L.P. Oliver,
courtesy of Hartwick Photography.
Revised May 13, 2001