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30, April 2017

How Did Route 66 Get Its Number?

The black-and-white Route 66 shield is an internationally recognized symbol of America, on par with the Golden Gate Bridge, Gateway Arch, and Statue of Liberty. The road itself is a 2,400-mile icon of America’s collective memory. Even for those of us who weren’t around to drive it during its heyday, the number 66 is mythical. But what if that number had been different, like 60, 62, or even 60N? Read more »

25, April 2017

How the Spanish-American War Met the Society Pages

It’s probably been a while since a St. Louis Post-Dispatch editor has penned several hundred exasperated words about the tango.

 
13, April 2017

Jordan Chambers: The Negro Mayor of St. Louis

In 1931 the St. Louis Post-Dispatch referred to Jordan Chambers, who held no official political office, as the Negro Mayor of St. Louis. Chambers was larger than life, a political power broker whose influence was far reaching. It was said that little happened in St. Louis politics—or in the black community in general—that Chambers didn’t somehow have a hand in. Read more »

10, April 2017

66 Through St. Louis: Crestwood Bowl

This is the seventh in a series of posts highlighting Route 66 stops of interest through St. Louis. We encourage you to learn more about their history and then check them out in person. Even better, snap some photos and share them with us on Twitter and Instagram by using #ShowMe66 and tagging @mohistorymuseum.  Read more »

30, March 2017

A Fate of Flames

St. Louis was once home to one of the largest hotels in all the world—until the unthinkable happened. Read more »

24, March 2017

Meet the Potters

St. Louis has a long tradition of cultivating both artists and avenues for delivering their work to receptive audiences. River Styx magazine, for one, has been a vessel for poetry, art, fiction, and nonfiction since 1975, presenting work from Pulitzer Prize winners, poets laureate, and novices alike. Read more »

22, March 2017

Rock 'n' Roll's Founding Father: Chuck Berry

Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry was born in a three-room cottage at 2520 Goode Avenue (now Annie Malone Drive) in the Ville, the heart of St. Louis’s black community during an era of deep-seated segregation and intense racism. In the all-black, self-contained neighborhood, Berry attended Sumner High School and sang at Antioch Baptist Church. Read more »

17, March 2017

How the Irish Found Gold in St. Louis

Unlike the experiences of Irish immigrants in nearly every other major U.S. city, the Irish who settled in St. Louis in the mid-1800s were embraced—and they thrived. The following is adapted from Rev. William Barnaby Faherty’s 2001 book The St. Louis Irish: An Unmatched Celtic Community, published by the Missouri Historical Society Press. Read more »

9, March 2017

Phoebe Couzins: Blazing the Way for Women

A leading figure in the suffragist movement, Phoebe Couzins has a legacy that shouldn’t be forgotten. The question is, what are we more likely to remember her for?

Couzins was born in St. Louis on September 8, 1842, to John E. D. and Adeline Couzins, both of her whom were tireless public servants. Witnessing their work as chief of police and battlefield nurse, respectively, likely inspired Couzins’s interest in social causes. Her cause of choice? The empowerment of women. Read more »

3, March 2017

The Highs and Lows of Gov. James Wilkinson

Occasionally there are figures who weave in and out of history, connecting seemingly disparate people and events. It’s like when an infamous recurring character’s name pops up in the credits of a television show: You just know things are about to get messy.  

James Wilkinson was one such person. Throughout his lifetime he had been called a conspirator, drunkard, slanderer, traitor, insurgent, perjurer—and the Louisiana Territory’s first governor. Read more »