Marblehead is a small village south of Quincy along Mill Creek. Michael Mast, John Coffman, and Stephen Thomas platted the village in 1835. John Thomas was apparently the first European to move in, perhaps when it was known as Millville.
One of the early businesses was a ferry across the Mississippi River to Marion City, Missouri; Woodford Lawrence started it up around 1836. It was little more than a flat platform that rested atop two canoes that were tethered together; a rail around the platform kept the animals and passengers from falling into the river. It didn’t have a lot of capacity. Its first assignment was to carry three horses across the river, but it could only handle one at a time.
Ebenezer Harkness ran a tavern near the ferry landing, which was probably a good business decision. The village also had a couple of limestone kilns and a station for the Quincy, Alton and St. Louis Railroad. When Marblehead got a post office in 1878, fewer than a hundred people lived there. The village was built along Mill Creek in the flood plain, so it’s no surprise that it has gotten wet many times. The last major flood was in 2008.
Heading downriver? Check out Levee Township.
Heading upriver? Check out Quincy.
© Dean Klinkenberg, 2016