MISSOURIANS ABROAD 545
MISSOURIANS ABROAD—NO. 15
JAMES CASH PENNEY
BY C. P. DORSEY
Among its important contributions to American commerce
and business, Missouri has in the person of James Cash Penney,
furnished the head of the world's greatest chain of retail dry
goods stores, and a projector of noteworthy agricultural
Rising from obscurity and poverty, Mr. Penney has in
the brief space of 25 years achieved notable success, and with
him in his upward climb has brought hundreds of men throughout his organization.
It was on a farm two and a half miles east of Hamilton,
Caldwell county, that James Cash Penney was born, September
His father, Rev. James C. Penney, a minister in the Old
School Baptist church, was also a Missourian by birth, his
paternal ancestor, Rev. Eli Penney, having been one of the
early settlers in the vicinity of Mirabile, Caldwell County.
He, too, was a Baptist minister, and of Kentucky lineage.
Mary Frances Penney, mother of the younger James C.
Penney, also was a Kentuckian.
A pretty romance attaches to the circumstances which
led to the marriage of Mary Francis Penney to the son of
a Missouri pioneer, who chanced to be her cousin; a romance
of the old days prior to the Civil war.
A KENTUCKY ROMANCE
In Anderson county, Kentucky, eight miles from Frankfort, on a southern estate, resided in the antebellum days two
sisters, Polly and Mildred Burris. The former became the
wife of Eli Penney, afterward the Baptist preacher at Mirabile,
and from their union came the elder James C. Penney.
The other sister, Mildred, married Richard Paxton, afterward colonel of a Kentucky regiment in the Confederate