BIOGRAPHY FOUND IN: HISTORY OF NORTHEAST MISSOURI
AUTHOR/COMPILER: WALTER WILLIAMS - PUBLISHED IN 1913
Judge Charles S. Yancey, the father of Stephen B., was born in Albemarle County, in Virginia, in the early part of the year 1800. The family had been long established in Virginia, and was one of considerable prominence and power in that state. The judge, be it said, was a self-made man. He studied law under Judge Todd at Columbia, was admitted to the bar and located in Springfield in 1833, where he gained considerable distinction in the legal fraternity. He was a man of strong magnetic power, with a pleasing personality, and came to be one of the leading attorneys of the state of Missouri. He became circuit judge of his district in 1842-3, and was the first man south of the Missouri River to sentence a man to the gallows. The prisoner, when asked if he had anything to say, replied: "Nothing, Judge, only that you have been fair and merciful to me." He was a man of sterling integrity, clearheaded and of acknowledged ability in the law, and always fair and honorable in his rulings. When yet a young man Governor Boggs., in 1836, appointed him colonel of the state militia, Find with a regiment of soldiers removed the Indians from Southwest -Missouri to their reservation in the Indian Territory. So skillfully was his task accomplished that the governor openly expressed his pleasure ', Find the Indians ever after regarded him as their best friend. Judge Yancey, was one of the most prominent public speakers in Missouri, and one of the leading statesmen of the commonwealth, and as such bad been recognized for many years prior to his death. He was serving his third term as judge and had often been solicited to stand for congress. Had he lived his friends say he would have been governor of the state. He died in 1856, in the very prime of his manhood when he was about forty-six years of age. He married Mary Bedford, the daughter of one of the finest families of Boone county, Missouri, and a woman of superior intellect and character. A notable event of this wedding is that Mary Todd, afterward the wife of President Abraham Lincoln, acted as bridesmaid for Mary Bedford. Mrs. Yancey's father was Stephen Bedford, one of the pioneers and most prominent men of his section of the state for many years. When the judge died he left three children: Anna Rozelle, Stephen B., of this review, and Robert, who served as a soldier in the Confederate army under General Price and died soon after peace was declared, being but sixteen years old at the time of his death. The wife and mother died one year previous to the passing of the judge, and from her death he never seemed able to recover. Judge Yancey was ever the champion of the people, and he maintained their enduring faith and love to the last. When he died the populace, felt that they had lost a friend, and if was indeed go, and for years after his friends recounted his many virtues and dwelt upon his loyal and unswerving friendship.