A Vogt Family Biography:

This biography was transcribed from the book "One Hundred Years of MEMORIES, Our "Monett Times", 1887-1987" pages 318-320.

Any errors that may occur in this biography have not been corrected. This biography was transcribed exactly as it was written.

Robert (Bob) Vogt Family History

Engilbert and Emily DeRuntz Vogt bought land on Kings Prairie about 1884 when Monett was known as Plymouth Junction. This unimproved land sold for $1.25 an acre and was known as railroad land. They had eight children of which Robert was the oldest and only step-son of Emily. Robert's mother Anastasia Vogt died when he was one year old. He was born in France in the community of Goldberg, Upper Rhine in 1872, coming to America when he was a baby. The family came to Carondelet, a French suburb of St. Louis, Mo.

Before moving to Kings Prairie they purchased a new Springfield wagon in St. Louis and used it to transport their household furnishings. The trip was difficult as the wagon was too large for the ruts in the wagon trail. This large wagon was used for a hearse on the Prairie in times of funerals.

When the home was finished on Kings Prairie, Mrs. Vogt and children came by train to Verona for that was as far as the railroad went at that time.

Robert left the farm at the age of 17 to return to St. Louis to seek employment in the steam fitter's trade. He quickly worked his way up in the Peter Echler Heating and Engineers Co., culminating as superintendent of heating installations in the Union Station, St. Louis, Adolphus Hotel in Dallas, Tex. and Missouri Peniteniary in Jefferson City, Mo. On the Rolla School of Mines job he met Rosemary Trenkel and they were married August 22, 1915 in Dallas, Texas.

Several years later they decided to open a plumbing business in Monett, in the spring of 1918 and in a store building owned by C.I. Williams and located about where the Monett Times Building is today. They lived in the back of the business for about a year. In 1919 they bought 5 lots and a house at 811 Lincoln Avenue and Mrs. Vogt's mother, Minnie Trenkel, came to live with them and to help care for her three granddaughters.

It wasn't long before they added wallpaper and pain and built their own store across the street at 514 Broadway. They were very happy to get away from Kelley Creek at their back door. About this time they discontinued the plumbing business. For forty years the Vogt's continued the store in Monett with Mrs. Vogt closing out the business in 1958 -- two years after Robert passed away.

Mrs. Vogt was a valuable co-owner and business woman. Her ability as an artist enabled her to assist and advise customers on pleasing and compatable colors to choose when they were re-decorating. Many satisfied customers returned again and again from the Monett trade area to buy their wallpaper and paint. They also carried a full line of artist supplies of which Mayor Floyd Stewart, a faithful customer can verify. For years they provided a gift shop of ceramics and pottery that was popular.

During the great depression it wasn't unusual for the Vogts to take farm produce and once even a hand embroidered pillow in exchange for a room of wallpaper from a customer who was financially unable to pay, but who badly needed to paper some rooms in the spring after cooking and heating with coal or wood the past winter. Some people repapered their kitchens every spring because coal was a dirty fuel.

Mrs. Vogt was called upon by Mayor Russell to supervise the landscape plantings in the Monett City Part and Casino area. She was one of the first 4-H Club leaders in Barry County in 1928. Her artistic ability was cultivated by the many lessons she took from renowned painting teachers. She especially enjoyed oil, watercolor and china painting. She was also an accomplished pianist, giving lessons when she was younger and accompanying on the piano the silent movies in theaters. Mrs. Vogt passed away January 1986 at 99 1/2 years of age.

Mr. Vogt was a charter member of the Kiwanis Club and of the Chamber of Commerce, serving as director for many years. He was very active in the Crippled Children's committee and made many trips to Jefferson City, Mo. to obtain Barry County's first County Agent. He was also a member of the Anti-Horse Thief Association, Sportsman League, Knights of Columbus, St. Lawrence Catholic Church, Holy Name Society and was the secretary of the Woodmen of the World for 25 years.

He helped promote the Easter Egg Hunt at the city park, using the store building at night to sack barrels of candy eggs in small paper sacks with a merchant's name printed on the sack. These sacks then could be redeemed by the finder the next day for one penny a sack from the designated merchant. Oh, what traffic and clamor there was in Broadway the following Monday with children collecting their pennies.

Bob and a plumber installed the playground equipment at the Kiwanis playground in the city park, much of which is still in use today. He was in many home talent plays at the city hall and was an after dinner speaker many times.

After Mr. Vogts' death, Mr. Meuser of the Monett Times wrote, "Bob Vogt lived with a twinkle in his eye, was already with a chuckle and liked to visit. He was unhurried, affable and seemed to take life in it's stride from one day to the next. I have never heard a person say an unkind word about him. He was loved and admired by a large number of friends. When you extended him a favor, he was quick to express his appreciation in a complimentary way that you knew it was sincere. Bob had a full life of happiness and Monett and Barry County is a better community for his having lived here."

Mr. and Mrs. Vogt were the parents of three daughters, Roberta Roberson of Northern California, Angela McGee of New Mexico, Selina Craig of Monett and ten grandchildren. Selina has continued to stay in Monett and has three sons, Walker Craig III and James and Robert Breeden. In May 1986 she completed 40 years of teaching, of which 36 years were in the Monett School System. Her husband Walker Craig, Jr. is also a teacher in Monett and is completing his 30th year of teaching.

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