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Missouri Governors Records, 1836-1897


The collection includes official records of 19th century Missouri governors. Missouri’s sixth governor, Lilburn Williams Boggs is the first for which the Missouri State Archives holds gubernatorial records.

Missouri governors from the19th century coped with tensions surrounding the expulsion of Mormons, slavery, violence along the Kansas border, guerilla bands, vigilantes and the outbreak of the Civil War. Other topics in the collection include emancipation, the ousting of elected officials, voter disenfranchisement, civil unrest, outlaws, veterans’ issues, inflation, economic worries, labor unrest, railroad construction and massive debts.

Records of governors currently on-line include those for the years 1837-1885. Forthcoming additions to the collection include the years 1885-1897. The Missouri State Archives does not hold records for governors in office from 1821-1836.

Governors Records in This Collection

Meredith Miles Marmaduke, 1844

Records of Meredith Miles Marmaduke, including correspondence relating to the annexation of Texas, the Missouri border dispute with Iowa, the Bank of Missouri, the Bureau of Statistics, U.S. Congressional interference in state disputes, and the repudiation of state debts.

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Sterling Price, 1853-1857

Records of Sterling Price, including correspondence primarily relating to circuit court matters, slavery, and commerce; as well as petitions, proclamations, and writs of election.

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Hancock Lee Jackson, 1857

Records of Hancock Lee Jackson, including correspondence and petitions related to appointments, criminal cases, elections, extraditions, pardons, railroads, and swamp lands.

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Robert Marcellus Stewart, 1857 - 1860

Records of Governor Robert Marcellus Stewart, including appointments, correspondence, petitions, and swamp land records. The collection also includes military files regarding the Missouri-Kansas border conflict.

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Claiborne Fox Jackson, 1861

Records of Governor Claiborne Fox Jackson consist of four items of correspondence. Jackson aligned with the Confederacy during the 1861 state convention to determine whether Missouri would secede from the Union. He was subsequently removed from office.

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Hamilton Rowan Gamble, 1861 – 1864

Records of Hamilton Rowan Gamble, who was named provisional governor after Claiborne Fox Jackson was removed from office. His chief concern was keeping Missouri in the Union while at the same time resisting federal control. His records reflect the political upheaval suffered by Missouri during the Civil War.

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Willard Preble Hall, 1864 – 1865

Records of Willard Preble Hall, including commissions, correspondence, and petitions. When the state convention of July 1861 vacated statewide offices, Hall was chosen to serve as lieutenant governor. Governor Gamble died in office on January 31,1864, and Lieutenant Governor Hall became governor.

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Thomas Clement Fletcher, 1865-1869

Records of Thomas Clement Fletcher, the first native Missourian to serve as governor. He dealt with amnesty for Confederate soldiers and sympathizers, emancipation of Missouri slaves, railroad bond defaults, and the reorganization of the public education system.

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Joseph Washington McClurg, 1869-1871

Records of Governor Joseph Washington McClurg. During his administration, the state debt was cut by half, the School of Mines and Metallurgy was established at Rolla, and the college of agriculture at the University of Missouri was created.

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Benjamin Gratz Brown, 1871-1873

Records of Benjamin Gratz Brown, primarily consisting of subject correspondence covering a wide range of issues facing Missouri during Reconstruction.

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Silas B. Woodson, 1873-1875

Records of Silas B. Woodson. During his administration, Woodson reduced the state debt, lowered the tax levy, and signed an act to authorize a popular vote for a Constitutional Convention.

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Thomas Theodore Crittenden, 1881-1885

Records of Governor Thomas Theodore Crittenden, consisting primarily of resignations and requests for appointments, as well as some supporting petitions.

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Albert Pickett Morehouse, 1887-1889

Records of Governor Albert Pickett Morehouse, including correspondence pertaining to appointments, pardons, petitions, and resignations. The collection also includes reports.

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Rights and Reproductions

Copyright is in the public domain. Please see each individual finding aid for the appropriate citation. Preferred Citation: [Item description], [date]; [Name of governor and dates of office]; Office of Governor, Record Group [number]; Missouri State Archives, Jefferson City.

How to Use This Collection

The official title lists dates of service from inauguration to end of term. Records refer to the date range of materials included within the collection. The records have been digitized in their entirety. All images are the best available.

Additional Resources

Additional materials from the administration of each governor are noted within each individual finding aid.

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