Friday, April 1, 2011

The James Farm

Frank and Jesse James were born and raised outside of Kearney Missouri. The James Farm is a wonderful historic place that has witnessed some amazing events, including the Union Militia raid in 1863 and the Pinkerton attack in 1875. Visitors to the farm have included William Quantrill, Bloody Bill Anderson, and members of the James-Younger gang. Few places are steeped in both Civil War and western outlaw history. The James Farm was also the life home of Zerelda Cole Samuel (1824-1911) and her son Frank James (1842-1915). The First grave of Jesse James (1847-1882) was located on the James Farm, Jesse’s remains were later moved to the Mt Olivet Cemetery in Kearney, MO in 1902.
Until 1978, the James Farm was owned by the descendents of Frank and Jesse James. By then, the elements had just about claimed the farm. It was in ruins. Clay County purchased the home from Jesse's grandchildren and the restoration work began. By the next summer, visitors were once again going through the farm. Many visitors expressed an interest in how they could help with the restoration of the farm. As a direct response to these requests, an organization called "The Friends of the James Farm" formed and its board of directors would like to invite you to become a member. As a "Friend" your annual membership dues ($20 and Up) will help finance the continued restoration of the farm as well as help sponsor historical research to help future generations know more about the lives and times of the James family.
The Friends of the James Farm also sponsors Frontier Revolver Shoots. I covered one of these a few weeks ago in this blog. The amount and variety of old guns and replicas seen at these events are amazing.
Milton F. Perry Research Library is located at the Jesse James Farm & Museum and is available to the public Monday – Friday from 9-4 p.m. Please call to make an appointment. 816-736-8500. Historian and genealogist Liz Murphy is available to assist researchers, please make an appointment in advance.
Adults: $7.50, Seniors (62 and over): $6.50, Children (8-15): $4.00
Children (Under 8): Free, Discounts available for groups of 15 or more.
James Farm Website :

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