Spring in St. Louis
6, June 2014

Reliving D-Day through St. Louis Soldiers' Stories

June 6, 1944: D-Day. The day when more than 160,000 American and Allied forces landed on the beaches of Normandy in an effort to overtake the German advances in France.

Many St. Louis soldiers heroically battled German forces, whether at sea, on the ground, or in the air. Scrapbooks housed in the Missouri History Museum Library collection chronicle the events of D-Day (and World War II in general), focusing on St. Louisans who were there. Read more »

6, June 2014

Civil War Love Letters: June 6–22, 1864

At the end of this letter, there is a note from Molly’s brother William C. Wilson, dated June 22, 1864. William forwarded this letter and others to Molly, who was presumably visiting her family and friends in Illinois at the time. In 1864, William owned a steam bakery, Wilson & Atwell, in St. Louis.

Camp Oglethorpe
Macon Ga.
June 6th 1864

Molly Dear

I understand a mail will leave to day so I hasten to im­prove the opportunity. We hope to hear from St. Louis soon. We get news from our armies every day, but none from home for over a month. Read more »

3, June 2014

St. Louis and the Plan for a Midwestern Disneyland

It’s the eve of my family’s annual summer vacation, and this time it’s the big one. You know, that magical place in Orlando. I’ve spent weeks planning this trip to Disney World, poring over a seemingly endless fount of information: where to dine, where to stay, how to get from here to there, which apps I need, and which attractions to see. Read more »

2, June 2014

Civil War Love Letters: June 2, 1864

In this letter, James again mentions Molly’s “grand fair,” a reference to St. Louis’s Mississippi Valley Sanitary Fair, which raised money for the Western Sanitary Commission to buy hospital supplies for sick and wounded soldiers. The fair opened on May 17, 1864, closed a few weeks later, and raised over $550,000. Molly and her sister Sallie were in the Floral Department.

Camp Oglethorpe
Macon Georgia
June 2d 1864

Molly Dear Read more »

30, May 2014

Maya Angelou, 1928–2014

With Maya Angelou’s passing on May 28, the world lost a prolific poet and author. In her lifetime, Angelou was awarded more than 30 honorary degrees, received three Grammy Awards for spoken word recordings, and was given the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Obama, just to list a few of her many honors.

Photo at left by Adria Richards, 2009. Wikimedia Commons. Read more »

27, May 2014

They Don't Make 'Em Like They Used To: A Look at Old Commercials and Outdated Technology

The Missouri History Museum has the largest regional media archive in the country. According to Klara Foeller, curator of Moving Image and Sound at the Museum, one of the collections we are currently preparing to digitize is the Epsilon Dalzell Premier (Premier Studios) collection. The bulk of the collection is composed of television commercials for St. Louis companies such as Purina, Anheuser-Busch, Monarch Knapp, and Brown Shoe. These commercials were broadcast to a regional audience, including those in Missouri, Georgia, Nebraska, Arkansas, and Ohio. Read more »

23, May 2014

Meet Me at the Tivoli, Tivoli

On Saturday, May 24 the Tivoli Theatre in University City's Delmar Loop will celebrate 90 years since it first opened. According to the Tivoli's website, when it debuted on May 24, 1924, St. Louis mayor Henry Kiel gave a speech, as did University City mayor Warren Flynn. The evening's entertainment included a showing of the silent film The Confidence Man and vaudeville acts. Read more »

18, May 2014

Civil War Love Letters: May 18, 1864

Macon Georgia
Military Prison
May 18th 1864

Dear Mollie

We were moved from “Danville” on the 12th inst. and arrived here yesterday after a most unpleasant ride and a short march in mud and rain. We are camped inside what was the fair grounds, in rather warm quarters, and exposed to the weather, but we expect to build sheds in a day or two and then I will much prefer it for the summer and fall to Libby. We have no longer any hopes of immediate Exchg. unless all our friends in the North unite to bring pressure to bear on our Government. Read more »

16, May 2014

Community Leader to Receive Honorary Degree at University of Missouri–St. Louis

We are pleased to learn that Elizabeth Gentry Sayad will receive an honorary degree at the University of Missouri–St. Louis commencement ceremonies on May 17. Sayad, an author, accomplished musician, fundraiser, and community leader, has dedicated most of her life to preserving the region’s French history and culture. After the flood of 1993, Sayad worked with the French Heritage Relief Committee to rescue the 1792 Beauvais-Amoureux House in Ste. Genevieve. Read more »

15, May 2014

Time in a Bottle: A 250 in 250 Object

While I feel like it changes every other day, my current favorite artifact in 250 in 250 is the “saloon in a bottle.” Carl Worner, its creator, had to be an interesting character. He would ramble from bar to bar, calling for a large bottle, cigar boxes, scrap wood, a hatpin, and glue. From those he would produce a vibrant miniature scene in a bottle, in exchange for food and drink at the bar. His creations are wonderful bits of folk art. One of my favorite things about this particular saloon in a bottle is that he misspelled “whisky” with two H’s on the barrel. Read more »