H.R. Moffet's column:
George Penyx, a well known colored
man of Monmouth, died at his home on South Eighth Street, March 5, 1906, of
dropsy and a complication of diseases. He had been confined to his home for
some three months and growing worse all the time.
Mr. Penyx had been a resident in
Monmouth since 1862, coming here soon after the battle of Fort Donelson. He
was born a slave in Missouri in April of 1835, and when ten years old was sold
to Dion Markabee of Dover, Tenn. After he grew up he was sold to a Mr. Penyx,
also of Tennessee, and from that time he was known as George Penyx. During the
first years of the Civil War he was a foreman on a boat on the Mississippi
River, and when the vessel was taken by the Unionists he came north with John
Thomas (also colored) and took up his residence here. He was married to Miss
Harriet Rice, who a few years before his death was adjudged insane and was in
the hospital when his end came. The couple never had any children.
Some twenty years before his death Mr. Penyx was
made a policeman in Monmouth, and served several years in that capacity, at
one time being assistant city marshal. Later he was elected a constable, and
was repeatedly re-elected, serving in that office at the time of his death. He
and his wife were for some time members of the Second United Presbyterian
Church. His funeral was held at his home and conducted by Dr. W.
T. Campbell, and Dr. J. J. Phillips, with
burial in the Monmouth Cemetery.
The Census of 1880 lists him
as a laundryman, born in Tennessee; his wife Harriet was two years older. The
more accurate Census of 1900 gives his birth date as April of 1836, his birth as
Missouri, his father's as Virginia and mother's as unknown; he was a machinist
at the time. Harriet was born in May of 1840.