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Comprehensively captures the robust history of the state of Missouri, from the pre-Columbian period to the present

Combining a chronological overview with topical development, this book by a team of esteemed historians presents the rich and varied history of Missouri, a state that has played a pivotal role in the history of the nation.

In a clear, engaging style that all students of Missouri history are certain to enjoy, the authors of Missouri: The Heart of the Nation explore such topics as Missouri’s indigenous population, French and Spanish colonialism, territorial growth, statehood, slavery, the Civil War and Reconstruction, railroads, modernization, two world wars, constitutional change, Civil Rights, political realignments, and the difficult choices that Missourians face in the 21st century. Featuring chapter revisions as well as new maps, photographs, reading lists, a preface, and index, this latest edition of this beloved survey textbook will continue to engage all those celebrating Missouri’s bicentennial. A companion website features a student study guide.

  • Published to commemorate the bicentennial of Missouri statehood in 2021
  • Features fully updated chapters that bring the historical narrative up to the present
  • Presents numerous images and maps that enrich the coverage of key events
  • Provides suggestions for further reading

Missouri: The Heart of the Nation is an excellent book for colleges and universities offering survey courses on state history or state government. It also will appeal to all lovers of American history and to those who call Missouri home.

Author Biography

WILLIAM E. PARRISH is Professor of History Emeritus at Mississippi State University.

LAWRENCE O. CHRISTENSEN was Professor of History at Missouri University S&T.

BRAD D. LOOKINGBILL is Professor of History at Columbia College of Missouri.

Table of Contents

Preface to the Fourth Edition ix

About the Companion Website xiii

1 Native Ground 1

2 A Confluence of Empires 23

3 The Missouri Borderlands 43

4 Statehood and Beyond 63

5 The Age of Benton 85

6 Slavery in Missouri 109

7 A Developing State 129

8 Turmoil on the Border 149

9 The Civil War 171

10 Radical Rule 195

11 The Gilded Age 219

12 Angry Farmers and Urban Reformers 241

13 Missouriana 261

14 Out of the Mud 283

15 The Pendergast Era 305

16 Better Government in Missouri 327

17 A Bellwether State 351

18 Into the New Millennium 373

Appendix 395

List of Illustrations 399

Index 405

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