The Historic Daniel Boone Home and surrounding property in Defiance is on the verge of becoming a St. Charles County park with a donation from Lindenwood University.
Lindenwood, which has owned the home and property since 1998, is gifting nearly 300 acres to the people of St. Charles County. An agreement was approved by the County Council on April 25, and the transaction is expected to be complete by mid-May. The property will be named Lindenwood Park.
Julie Mueller, Lindenwood vice president and COO, Dr. Michael Shonrock, Lindenwood system president; St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann; and Bettie Yahn-Kramer, St. Charles County parks director, at a ceremony announcing the university’s donation of the Historic Daniel Boone Home and surrounding property to St. Charles County.
“I am grateful the heritage of the Boone home will continue,” said Lindenwood President Michael Shonrock. “We appreciate the partnership of the county and are excited the area will be preserved as a county park.”
Ehlmann said the county already is assessing opportunities for expanding current programming on the property, which currently includes tours, events and educational programs.
“My enthusiasm for this donation is two-fold,” Ehlmann said. “First, it enables us to expand our county park system to provide more green space for outdoor activities, and second, I am thrilled that we will be part of sharing this rich history of our region with others.”
The nearly 300-acre site includes the Historic Daniel Boone Home, adjoining 66-acre Boonesfield Village historic site, and more than 200 acres of surrounding property. The county will continue to operate the Village complex, including the Boone home, as a tourist site.
The university holds a variety of academic activities at the site, including field biology, archaeology, history, and recreation leadership classes and activities, and will continue to do so under the agreement.
Lindenwood acquired the Boone home in 1998 from a private owner and purchased the additional property over the next several years. The home itself, a four-story Georgian-style structure, was built by Boone’s son Nathan with Boone’s help. Boone spent his final years in the home and died there in 1820. Boonesfield Village consists of more than 20 additional historic structures, all of which were relocated to the property over the course of several years.
Experience Missouri’s Frontier at Daniel Boone Home
DEFIANCE, MO, (SLFP.com) – Step back in time to experience the Missouri frontier of the early 1800s at the historic Daniel Boone Home, in the Femme Osage Valley at Defiance, MO. Visitors can see museum pieces including explorer and statesman Boone’s writing desk, “Long Rifles,” family dishes and period furniture in a special guided tour.
The four-story Georgian-style structure was hand-built with quarried Missouri limestone and black walnut by the Boone family over seven years. The house resembles Daniel’s birthplace in Pennsylvania and ancestral residences in Devon, England. The house was home to Daniel, his wife Rebecca and their ten children.
“Our goal is to preserve our Early American heritage and make it real for children,” said Barb Stum, who is a period hearth cook. Stum delights in explaining how families lived in the early 1800s to school children
“We want people to get the feel of the way things were back then,” she noted. “When you talk history with dates, places and people, it can get very boring. However, when children can some in and see first hand someone spinning or making candles, it really makes an impression.” The Boonesfield Village features seven buildings including a one-room school house, a chairmaker’s shop, chapel and a wealthy merchant’s home.
Strum related a story that Daniel traded his bridle, saddle and horse for 650 acres of land. In 1813, when Daniel was 80, he sent his youngest son, Nathan, to New Orleans to register the property to serve as a “living will.” New Orleans was the seat of government at the time for the Louisiana territory. “So that is why the house is referred to as the Nathan Boone home even though Daniel lived in this house longer than any other home and help build it.”
The house features a private apartment for Daniel and Rebecca so they could have peace and quite, noted Stum. She added that when the house was put back together in the early sixties as a touring home, many of the original family furniture pieces were donated by Boone’s family. Recently, the historic home and village was merged with Lindenwood University. Funds will be used to continue the restoration of the Boone Home, maintain the gardens, restore and put up more old buildings in the village.
The hour and one half tour includes a 25-minute movie, Daniel Boone in Missouri, filmed on location with re-enactors and volunteers. This historical site is located on Highway F, 35 miles west of St. Louis. For directions, group tour rates or information on wedding chapel bookings, call (636) 798-2005.