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Show Me Missouri: The Significance of 200 years

August 02, 2021

Missouri is celebrating 200 years this year and to honor that, OzarksFirst is taking a look at the past 200 years and what has made Missouri significant all this time.

OzarksFirst Political Analyst Dr. Brian Calfano met with a former history teacher turned Missouri’s Senior Senator, Roy Blunt. Blunt has a master’s degree in history and taught history at Marshfield High School before moving to politics.

“There are a lot of Missourians that have led the way in so many different fields. You know, politicians from Harry Truman to Phyllis Schlafly. Innovators from Walt Disney to Rush Limbaugh, who really decided there were different ways to do things than anybody else have ever done them before,” says Sen. Blunt.

Blunt adds, to understand the history of America, you need to understand the history of Missouri. Missouri has served as a prime transportation hub and has the biggest piece of contiguous agricultural ground globally for being in the middle of the Mississippi River Valley.

“Missouri is right in the center of that. It has its own built-in transportation system, which created that focus on St. Louis and then later Westport, and Independence, and Kansas City. The gateway to the West and, more than that, a state where reaching out was always important. You know, originally a place where traders and trappers, merchants, would congregate, but not necessarily to do business there but to do business other places. So our westward expansion was important. The trade with Mexico, the Santa Fe Trail, that all was generated by Missourians out of Missouri,” says Blunt.

Blunt also talks about the importance Missouri had in sports.

“You have the Negro Leagues that bring that element not only into sports but also into the transition into the Kansas City Monarchs, the home team of Jackie Robinson and Satchel Paige, and many others: Buck O’Neil,” says Blunt.

To read the article online, click here.

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