New Madrid County. Three years later, Lawrence County was established, which included all of southern Missouri west of the St. Francis River as well as a portion of northern Arkansas...The administrative configuration of southern Missouri changed again in 1818 with the creation of Wayne County. This massive county included nearly one-fifth of the area lying within the Missouri Territory, of which Greenville became the county seat.
In 1833 the General Assembly established Ripley County from a portion of Wayne County. At its creation, the county included the area comprising present-day Ripley, Carter, Shannon, Oregon, and Howell Counties, with Van Buren as the county seat. Over the next 26 years, Ripley County's boundaries decreased as new counties were formed...
Because most of the population was in the southern half of the county, voters decided to move the county seat to the newly platted Doniphan, nearer to the center of population and a wooden courthouse was built. This building served the county until Union troops burned it, and most of Doniphan, in 1864. Fortunately, William Russell, a county official, had earlier removed the county's record books from the courthouse and placed them in a cave south of town. They remained hidden until they were retrieved by the county clerk in 1867.
Carter, Butler, Oregon and Arkansas Counties Randolph and Clay.