W. H. Kavanaugh, ex-sheriff and collector of Morgan County, Mo., was born in Moniteau County, Mo., in 1844, and has been a resident of Morgan County, Mo., since 1870. His parents, Charles W. and Elizabeth (Briscoe) Kavanaugh, wore born in Kentucky and Tennessee, respectively, and were among the pioneer settlers of Moniteau County, whither they came about 1834. The father was an extensive farmer and stock-dealer, and is still living, a resident of Chariton County, Mo. His wife died in 1862, at the age of forty-two years; both were members of the Baptist Church. Their children's names are: Susan W. (wife of C. Pulley, of Cooper County), W. H., Mary (wife of Jacob Landers, of Dade County), Charles B. (a merchant of Ray County, Mo.), Elizabeth W. (wife of Z. T. Clifton, the present postmaster of Syracuse. Mo.) and Ellen (wife of Simpson Oldham). W. H. Kavanaugh attended the common schools until he was fifteen years of age, and in tho first year of the Rebellion enlisted in the Missouri State Guard, but after serving six months enlisted in the Second Missouri Confederate Infantry, Company D, and served until the close of the war, participating in the battles of Lexington, Pea Ridge, Farmington, Iuka, Corinth (where he was wounded by a gunshot in the right arm), Grand Gulf, Baker's Creek, siege of Vicksburg, the Georgia campaign, Dalton, Resaca, New Hope Church, Kenesaw Mountain, Marietta, Peach Tree Creek, siege of Atlanta, Hood's raid in Tennessee, Franklin (where he was captured, and taken to Chicago, where he was retained three months. and then exchanged at Richmond, Va), Spanish Fort and Fort Blakely (where he was again captured, on the 9th day of April, with all of his command, and confined on Ship Island for two weeks, being discharged May 10, 1865, at Jackson, Miss). He then returned to his home, in June of that year, and worked as a farm hand until 1867, when he was married, December 29, to Arminda Chaney, who was born in Morgan County, a daughter of Henry Chaney, a pioneer of the county. To their union were born six children: Leonidas (who died at the age of nine years), Edwin F., Stella, Charles W., Orsino and Minnie M. After their marriage they were engaged in farming in Moniteau County for two years, and then moved to Morgan County, where he bought a small farm, on which he lived until the spring of 1884, when he was elected sheriff and collector of Morgan County for two years, and was reelected in 1886. His office of collector expired March 1, 1889. He is a Democrat in politics, and belongs to the A. O. U. W.
History of Cole, Moniteau, Morgan, Benton, Miller, Maries and Osage Counties, Missouri, Goodspeed Publishing Co., 1889.