Guest Author - Amanda Masoner
Did you know that Missouri has been one of the nationís leading trade centers since the Santa Fe Trail brought wagons across its terrain? I didnít either! When I think of Missouri I think of the arch and the river and the artsy cities. But I havenít ever thought of it as a trade capital! Follow along with me and weíll learn a little bit more about the Show Me State!
Beating St. Louis, by almost 100,000 residents, Kansas City takes the prize for the largest population with a total of 441, 545 residents!
On the other end of the spectrum, in Laclede County, is tiny Phillipsburg with the smallest population coming in at 201 residents.
Overall the Show Me State ranks 17th in the nation (as far as population is concerned) with an estimated 5,672,579 folks.
I already gave you the nickname but youíre still awaiting the name of the capital. Wait no longer-itís Jefferson City.
Missouri has its own waltz as the state song: the Missouri Waltz. I wonder if there is anyone who still knows the steps to it.
Those lucky Missourians get to claim the bluebird as their state bird.
And the busy honeybee is there state insect.
Their state insect is a fortunate one because they get to work hand-in-hand with the state flower, which is the White Hawthorn blossom-yum!
One of my favorite trees gets high ranking in Missouri as the state tree. Few trees can compete with the Flowering Dogwood in the spring!
Believe it or not, the three top producing agricultural products are sorghum, soybeans, and rice! That third one threw me for a loop. How about you?
Now for some fun historyÖ
The original immigrants to the fine state of Missouri were French fur traders and missionaries. They swooped in around the early 18th century. Spain sent a few gents over but most of the inhabitants came from Eastern United States.
By the mid-1700s St. Genevieve, the first permanent settlement in Missouri, was shipping out everything from fur, to lead, to bear, to feathers! I canít say as I want to be the one harvesting that third shipment!
The Santa Fe Trail, the Oregon Trail, steamboats, and trains all greatly aided in the exportation of all Missouriís goods. Today it remains very diverse in its services and products, but the main two are automobile and aerospace manufacturing.
For those of you seeking something to do this summerÖ
If you are in the mood for some theater St. Louis and Kansas City tout the stateís most notorious theaters. The theaters found in these cities are home to Broadway musicals and plays.
There is always Branson if you are in the mood for a different kind of theater!
Symphony orchestras are found across the state sprinkled in St. Louis, Springfield, Independence, and Columbia, to name a few.
Now that you are armed with a greater knowledge of the history and the background of the Show Me State, try and make it over there and let me know what else you dig up!