Spring in St. Louis
13, March 2015

WWI Artifacts and Memories—Gas Warfare

The First World War debuted ruinous tools of warfare that wreaked havoc on the warring armies. Among these were the machine gun, the armored tank, aircraft, and chemical warfare. All of these technologies had seen limited service around the world in the years prior, but until World War I they had not been utilized to such a devastating degree. Read more »

5, March 2015

The Louisiana Purchase and the Haitian Revolution

What makes the Louisiana Purchase such a defining moment in American history is the very fact that many of us couldn’t imagine our nation without it. Just think about it for a second: How different would the history of the United States be if the nation’s western boundary stopped at the Mississippi River? It would change the very fabric of how Americans imagine themselves, how the economy of the country works, and how the nation was shaped. Indeed, many of you reading this right now might not have even been Americans if not for the Louisiana Purchase. Read more »

5, March 2015

Artifact Madness 2015 Starts on March 9!

In April 2016, an exciting new exhibit will open at the Museum—Little Black Dress: From Mourning to Night will feature more than 60 dresses from the Missouri History Museum's world-renowned textile collection. This fun but thought-provoking exhibit will explore the subject of mourning, as well as the transition of black from a symbol of grief to a symbol of high fashion.  Read more »

2, March 2015

Civil War Love Letters: After the War

After an extraordinary life that included immigrating to the United States from Ireland, traveling to Australia and living there for four years, and then surviving four years of war, James Love married Molly Wilson on May 2, 1865, and then had an ordinary, presumably happy, life. Unfortunately, he did not leave behind any correspondence, diaries, or other papers to document the rest of his life, but city directories, the census, and other sources at least provide information on where he lived and his occupation. Read more »

25, February 2015

Digging Deeper into Immigration

As part of the award-winning program Teens Make History, we, the Teens Make History Players, research, write, and perform plays throughout the Missouri History Museum. Our shows enhance both traveling and permanent exhibits by sharing stories and bringing to life historical moments. Our most recent play, Emigrant/Immigrant, is based on the experiences of immigrants to St. Louis and was written to go along with two of the Museum’s current exhibitions—Utopia and The Missouri Immigrant Experience. Read more »

24, February 2015

Clark Terry, 1920–2015

Famed jazz trumpeter and St. Louisan Clark Terry passed away this weekend at age 94. Terry was so passionate about music as a child that he fashioned a trumpet out of a funnel attached to a garden hose (the unpleasant noise drove his neighbors to eventually buy him a trumpet from a pawn shop). He performed with the Count Basie Orchestra and the Duke Ellington band, eventually playing, and popularizing, the flugelhorn. In 1960 he became the first African American staff musician on the Tonight Show. Read more »

23, February 2015

WWI Artifacts and Memories—From the Mexican Border to Northern France

For many Missourians military service did not start with World War I. Rather, it began on the Mexican border after the Mexican Revolution in 1910. American soldiers stationed on the Mexican border would clash with Mexican rebels over several years, culminating in the 1916 Punitive Expedition, during which General John J. Pershing pursued Pancho Villa into Mexico. The events on the Mexican border resulted in the mobilization of National Guard regiments across the country, including the Missouri National Guard. Read more »

13, February 2015

Uncovering an Unsung Hero: Mary Taussig Hall

In today’s world of empowered women and increased focus on gender equality, we are not shocked by stories of fearless women dedicated to making lasting change in their communities. But looking through the archives of the Library and Research Center of the Missouri History Museum, I came across the story of a woman out of place for her context in history. Read more »

12, February 2015

WWI Artifacts and Memories: Service Flags

The First World War saw the largest mobilization of United States armed forces since the Civil War. Soldiers, sailors, and marines were drawn from the National Guard, volunteers, and conscription. By the war's end the armed forces had swelled to a staggering three million personnel. Patriotic fervor also swelled, and a desire to outwardly display support of the military led to the creation of the service flag, also known as a “son in service flag” or “blue star flag,” which is still used today. Read more »

9, February 2015

Civil War Love Letters: The Journey Home

Last week, we printed the very last letter that Captain James Love wrote to his beloved Molly during his time in the Civil War. But that wasn't the end of the story, in the next several weeks, we'll be providing an epilogue of his and Molly's life, beginning with James's journey home after the war. Read more »