"Oliver Anderson was born Feb. 15, 1794, in Nicholasville, Ky....by the age of 16 or 17, had already established an extensive trade with New Orleans by means of flat boats, returning to Kentucky on foot."
Though a youth at the time, Oliver Anderson was a member of Capt. Patrick Gray's Company of Kentucky Volunteers in the War of 1812 and helped build Fort Defiance in Ohio. He was also wounded and made a prisoner at Frenchtown on the River Raisin, but made his escape from the British forces. [Source]
Around 1850, Oliver Anderson moved to Lexington, Missouri; his wife, Mary, had died in 1847.
In the fall of 1861, the war came into Anderson's home. The Union army, which had occupied the Masonic College in Lexington and surrounded it with defenses, now claimed Anderson's house for use as a field hospital.