- SPECIAL REPORTS
- THE MAGAZINE
On the north bank of the Missouri River at its confluence with Bonne Femme Creek a mile north of Easley, a surveyor by the name of Ira Nash laid out two Spanish land grants. It was 1804, and the claims had been granted by the Spanish government before it sold the territory to France in 1802 and before the Louisiana Purchase by the United States from France in 1804. One claim was for Louis Delisle Jr., and the other was for Nash himself.
Nash was a physician, an accomplished surveyor and an eccentric born in Virginia. After his 1804 surveying, he returned to Virginia and resumed his life there until he came back in 1816 to live on his land. Here, Nash was a farmer, livestock dealer and owner of a fine stallion, and he had an interest in a steamboat.
The town of Nashville was laid out in 1819. The sale of lots began in 1820. In the first year, Nashville had a tobacco warehouse operated by James Harris and Abraham Williams, a post office and several stores and homes. Nashville was an important port until Rocheport was established in 1825. Rocheport had a better boat landing and richer farming hinterlands. Nashville managed to survive for 24 years.
- Warren Dalton
Sources: "A History of Columbia and Boone County" by John C. Crighton; Columbiatribune.com, September 30, 2007.