Brashear, Missouri

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Brashear is a city in Salt River Township, Adair County, Missouri, United States. The population was 280 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Kirksville Micropolitan Statistical Area.



Brashear is located at 40°8′52″N 92°22′39″W / 40.14778°N 92.3775°W / 40.14778; -92.3775 (40.147868, -92.377565)[3]. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 0.3 square miles (0.9 km²), all of it land.


The town of Brashear was laid out in 1872, named for Richard Matson Brashear, a prominent farmer and businessman, the son of William G. Brashear. William is said to have been one of the first white settlers in the area, in 1842.[4] The Brashear community dates back prior to 1872 by several years however. Approximately one mile north of the current location, there once stood a prosperous small village named Paulville, also known as Paultown, established around 1855 by Walker Paul. Paulville served as a trading hub for the farms of eastern Adair County, with several businesses, including a grist mill. Sometime during the Civil War, the grist mill was put to the torch to prevent Confederate recruits from getting resupplied.[5] The coming of the Quincy, Missouri & Pacific Railroad in 1872 saw a wholesale population shift. The building of a rail depot at the newly-platted town of Brashear caused a very large portion of Paulville's population and business to migrate the short distance south. Through the latter half of the 19th century and first few decades of the 20th, Brashears business district ebbed and flowed as many farm communities are wont to do. Similarly, the Great Depression and post-World War Two mobility of the American public led to many changes. In 1950 Brashear had a population of only 152, however that number has been on a slight rise ever since. A few business concerns remain today, but most residents travel west to Kirksville or east to Edina for their shopping and employment.


Brashear has a history of quality in both the classroom and in athletic competition. Like many small rural towns, Adair County R-2 school is often the focus of community activity. The first school building was established in Brashear in 1857. By 1917 three years of high school credit could be obtained, and by 1922 Brashear was an accredited four-year high school. In 1925 the first Brashear High School was destroyed by fire, but quickly rebuilt. By January 1965 all surrounding rural schools had been consolidated into the current R-2 District.

Not long after the destruction of the first high school, a northern Missouri legend was born: the annual Brashear Basketball Tournament. The year 1918 saw the birth of organized school basketball at Brashear, and by 1927 the first tournament was held. Through good times and bad the tournament has persevered to become one of the oldest in Missouri. The Brashear Lady Tigers won back-to-back Missouri Class 1A state basketball titles in 2003 and 2004.[6] On June 3, 2010 the Brashear Tigers baseball team competed in the Missouri Class 1A baseball championship game, taking second place.[7] Brashear ia a charter member of the Tri-County Conference in athletics, academics, and music. A series of bond issues in recent decades has led to construction of some of the newest school facilities in northeast Missouri.

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