A Brief History of a Pioneer Family that settled in Bollinger County, Missouri
Compiled by Eula Talley Statler and Truman B. Statler
OUR STATLER FAMILY
In 1797, George Frederick Bollinger, a native of North Carolina of Swiss descent, came and selected a location on Whitewater River, where Don Louis Lorimier (Spanish Commandant of Cape Girardeau, Mo.) promised Bollinger a large tract of land on condition that he bring a number of settlers to this District.
In fulfillment of this agreement, Bollinger went back to North Carolina and on his return brought 20 families, numbering about 150 people including slaves. Among them were about 20 members that carried the Statler name. There were: Adam, Conrad, and Peter Statler with their families, and two young teenagers, Christian and Joseph Statler, twin brothers, in the caravan. Due to exposure and cold weather, Joseph contracted pneumonia and died soon after crossing the raging Mississippi River. He was buried on Granny's Hill at Ste. Genevieve, where they landed on New year's Day, January 1, 1800.
They built their own rafts, making them strong for the mighty waters and with long poles, guided these across the river. It has been related that one Statler family did not cross the river, but remained and settled near Herrin, Illinois.
Coming to this country from Germany, through Switzerland, to Spain, before they were able to get transportation by boat to the shores of America, must have been an endurance test. They settled for a time in North Carolina and with their mixed foreign language background, they spoke with an accent, thus called "Th N.C. Dutch."
Our forefathers left behind them a heritage, were claimed industrious and considered wealthy. Presuming, all direct heirs dead, an Estate was settled at one time, when all communications ceased. However, most important, we hear about their religious zeal, they left with us, a rich heritage of a continuing faith in God that sustained them, and now, knowing their strong faith in the Holy Spirit that brought victory over their many fears, how can we value our heritage. (to be continued).