What Are Some Important Events in Missouri's History?


Quick Answer

Missouri was made a state on Aug. 10, 1821, Jefferson City became the first state capital in 1826 and the Gateway Arch in St. Louis finished construction in 1965. The state's official borders did not finalize until the annexation of the Platte Purchase area on March 28, 1837.

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Full Answer

Following the Louisiana Purchase of 1803, the Louisiana Territory included the area that would become Missouri. On June 4, 1812, the Territory of Missouri became its own separate territory. Over the next six years, the territory's general assembly met and the first circuit court opened. On Jan. 8, 1818, the territory officially petitioned Congress through the office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives for statehood.

Following statehood and solidification of its borders, Missouri opened the University of Missouri on April 14, 1841, becoming the first college west of the Mississippi River. In 1847, the state was connected to the East Coast by telegraph line. The state then supported departing California gold rush explorers, taking on the nickname "Gateway to the West."

Harry S. Truman, heralding from Independence, Missouri, became president in 1945 following the death of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Truman won re-election in 1948. Although the state celebrated the opening of the Gateway Arch, just three years later in 1968, race riots broke out in Kansas City following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.

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