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Situated sixty miles south of St. Louis in the Lead Belt region of Missouri, the city of Farmington is the county seat of St. Francois County. The community has its start in 1798, when William Murphy and three of his sons traveled from Tennessee up the Mississippi River to claim unsettled land west of Saint Genevieve, which was under Spanish rule at the time. They staked four land claims, one each, in the area that was to become Farmington. They then returned home for their families, but Murphy died during the return trip. His three sons settled the area along with their families, and other members of the family arrived during the next few years, including Sarah Barton Murphy, the widow of William Murphy, who established the first Sunday School and Protestant church west of the Mississippi. Initially, the area was known as Murphy’s Settlement. When Missouri became a state in 1821, David Murphy contributed fifty-two acres to St. Francois County for the establishment of a county seat, and Farmington was incorporated as a town in 1822, a village in 1856, a fourth-class city in 1879, and a third-class city in 1981. Farmington is northeast of Rock Springs, south of Ogborn, and northwest of Libertyville.


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