The State of Washington has its many attractions, but Missouri remains my breeding ground. No matter how long I live in Washington, Missouri is still my home and the place that shaped me as a child. This remains the deciding factor in choosing things to see while I travel to other states. That’s why I made a decision about how to present my birth state. While Washington has its charms, Missouri has its strengths too. Branson and Lake of the Ozarks are definite attractions in this state, but when it comes to what to see while in Missouri, individual attractions rule. What follows are the 9 greatest things to see, in my opinion, in the Show Me State.
Kansas City has many things to appreciate, but my favorite among its places to visit is The Arabia. The Missouri River has definitely been a part of this state’s history. In 1856, a steamboat called The Arabia went down so fast into this river that a pioneer museum was born. Aboard this ship headed upriver were the personal belongings of all aboard. They had no time to save their possessions before the ship disappeared under the water in the river. About 130 years passed before this ship was located in a field near Parkville, Missouri. All the artifacts aboard it–shoes, china, bottled fruit, and medicines–were slowly recovered and put into a museum for all to see what was on its way to a new home somewhere on the frontier. All that was aboard this sinking ship was recovered and moved to this living museum. Now all can see what was on this ship that sank.
Not too far from this great museum is all of the Truman memorabilia in Independence. Missouri’s only President becomes a much admired icon as one tours his home in Missouri and his Presidential Library with its re-creation of the Oval Office where he was President after World War II.
Not too far from the Missouri city of Columbia is Westminster College in the town of Fulton. It was here that Winston Churchill delivered his passionate Iron Curtain speech in 1946. His personal possessions are on display in a museum that is part of a memorial dedicated to Churchill for all to see and appreciate. A portion of the Berlin Wall is also part of this remembrance. This is living history at its best.
St. Louis is a city rich in the story of the United States. The Arch and the Old Courthouse where the Dred Scott decision was rendered are both downtown and part of the Gateway Arch National Park. The courthouse is soon to be fully restored. It is already part of the rich complex that includes the Old Cathedral and records the history of this entire area. This complex of historic buildings has become part of the National Park Service and is a treasured monument to this city’s place in this country’s troubled background. Both can easily be toured in one visit and should be. While in St. Louis, a visit to its botanical garden near Tower Grove Park is also a must. All 3 attractions and more are available to be seen not too far from each other. My blog has recorded all that there is to do in this historic city in The American Midwest. Check it out for clarity and ideas,
The final must-dos in Missouri are visits to the State Capitol in one of the 3 Jefferson Cities in the United States and checking out the unique museum devoted to chess in St. Louis’ Central West End. This chess museum encompasses the World Chess Hall of Fame that has relocated in this Midwestern city of increasing note.