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Cole Camp, in Benton County, Missouri, is known for its annual street fair in September, Maifest in May, Oktoberfest in October, and Christbaumfest in late November, all of which highlight the town’s German heritage. Cole Camp is located along what was known as the Military Road. Ezekiel Williams, who settled along what became Williams Creek about four miles west of the current town site in 1829 or 1830, surveyed a section of the Military Road to include the part that would later become Benton County. He opened a trading post and way station for stage coaches and travelers, and then established a post office named for his home parish of Cole Camp in Kentucky. Other settlers moved in during the early 1830s, Dr. Hosea Powers being early among them. The town is centered upon the junction of four main roads: the old Military Road which became the Butterfield Trail, the Duroc Road that runs from the south to cross the Osage River, the Jefferson City Road that led east to Jefferson City, and the Boonville Road that came in from the north. After 1835, an influx of immigrants from Germany came to occupy much of the farm land north, south and east of town, soon becoming the predominant demographic. This became a problem during the American Civil War, as the German population of Cole Camp were Unionists while the remainder of the population were most Southern in their sympathies. One of the first battled of the Civil War took place in Cole Camp on June 19, 1861, and the community suffered greatly throughout the war and in the years to follow from bushwackers and guerrillas, as well as from Union and Confederate armies moving back and forth through Cole Camp. Cole Camp is northwest of Crockerville and southwest of Lake Creek.

 

 

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