State Facts 欧博娱乐& History

发布时间:2024-06-11 10:09

Map of Missouri

Map of Missouri


Often called the “Gateway to the West,” Missouri played a leading role in American expansion west of the Mississippi River. St. Joseph was the eastern starting point of the Pony Express, while the much-traveled Santa Fe and Oregon trails began in Independence. In addition, the Missouri River joins with the Mississippi at St. Louis, while the Ohio River joins the Mississippi further south on the Missouri border, creating a vibrant commercial river passage to New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. The culture of these mighty rivers continues to play an important role for the people and the economy of Missouri.

Missouri Geography

Lying near the geographic center of the 48 contiguous states, Missouri shares a border with Iowa on the north, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma on the west, Arkansas on the south, and Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee on the east. Almost the entire eastern border is the Mississippi River, one of the world’s great river systems.

The state can be divided into four distinct geographic regions: the Central Dissected Till Plains, the Osage Plains, the Ozark Plateau, and the Mississippi Alluvial Plain. Located north of the Missouri River, the Till Plains provide fertile soil and ample rainfall for productive agriculture. To the west and south of the Till Plains, the Osage Plains are mostly flat and dotted with small hills. These plains were once home to tallgrass prairies, but throughout the 1800s and early 1900s, settlers claimed the land that they called the “Great American Desert” for farms.

By far the largest region of the state, the Ozark Plateau includes the St. Francois Mountains that were formed by volcanic eruptions more than one billion years ago. Missouri’s highest point, Taum Sauk Mountain (1772 ft, 540.11 m) is located in these mountains. Springs, lakes, and rivers dot the Ozark Plateau.[1]

Precipitation patterns vary greatly across the state. In general, the Central Dissected Till Plains receive about 35 inches (88.9 centimeters), while the Mississippi Alluvial Plain receives an average of 55 inches (139.7 cm) per year. Because of the importance of agriculture in the state, the state’s economy is particularly susceptible to extreme variations in rainfall. For example, a drought in 2012 cost the state millions of dollars in lost agricultural revenues.[2]

Average annual temperatures also vary widely across the state, with those in the north being 10°F (12.22°C) below those in the southern part of the state.

Missouri People and Population

Demographically, the population of Missouri is predominantly white alone, not Hispanic or Latino (78.7%); Black or African American (11.8%); other race (5.38%); Hispanic or Latino (4.2%); two or more races (2.6%); Asian alone (2.2%); Native American and Alaska Native alone (0.6%); and Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander alone (0.02%).[3]

Missouri has a diverse age distribution with the largest age group being those aged 18-64 (60.0%, 2022). Senior citizens aged 65 and over make up around 17.6% (2022) of the population, while the population under 18 years old constitutes 22.4% (2022), with the median age being 38.3 years (2023)[4, 5].

The state has above national averages for educational attainment. In 2022, approximately 30.7% of the population aged 25 and over had a bachelor's degree or higher. Around 91,0% of the population aged 25 and over had at least a high school diploma.[6]

Christianity is the most common religion in Missouri with a significant proportion of the population identifying as Protestant (58%) and Roman Catholic (16%). There are also significant numbers of people who identify as non-religious (20%). Other religions represented in the state include Judaism, Buddhism, Islam, and Hinduism.[7]

Compared to other states, Missouri does not have a large immigrant population. In 2021, 4.1% of Missourians were foreign-born. The largest number of immigrants in the state come from Mexico, India, China, Vietnam, and the Philippines.[8]

Female Missourians outnumber their male counterparts 50.9% to 49.1%.

Missouri Government

Like all state governments, Missouri’s government is organized into three branches — executive, legislative, and judicial — mirroring the structure of the federal government. Missouri’s chief executive is the governor who is elected to a 4-year term and is responsible for overseeing many of the state agencies and departments.

The governor of Missouri is currently Mike Parson, who was elected in 2018 and reelected in 2022.[9] Governor Parson cannot run for reelection because no person can serve more than two terms as governor. Other elected executive branch officials include the following:

Lt. Governor: Mike Kehoe (R)

Attorney General: Andrew Bailey (R)

Auditor: Scott Fitzpatrick (R)

Secretary of State: John R. Ashcroft (R)

Treasurer: Vivek Malek (R)

The legislative branch is composed of the Missouri General Assembly, which is made up of a 34-member Senate and a 163-member House of Representatives. Currently, Missouri has what is called a Republican trifecta where the Republican Party controls the governorship and both houses of the General Assembly.[10] In 2023, the Senate included 24 Republican legislators and 10 Democrats, while the House of Representatives included 111 Republicans and 61 Democrats.[11]

The Missouri General Assembly is responsible for passing state laws and overseeing the state’s budget. Members of the Senate are elected to four-year terms and are limited to two terms, while members of the House of Representatives are elected to two-year terms and may serve for four terms.[12] The General Assembly meets annually in the state capitol in Jefferson City, with regular sessions beginning in January and ending in May.

The judicial branch is headed by the Missouri Supreme Court, which is responsible for interpreting the state’s laws and constitution and which has seven justices. The judicial branch also includes three appellate courts as well as local courts. To fill vacancies on the courts, a judicial commission recommends three qualified candidates to the governor, who selects one. The Senate then confirms the selection. The people, however, also have a voice in the process. After a judge has served for at least one year, a retention election at the next general election is held to determine whether the judge can continue serving.[13]

Missouri is also home to a variety of publicly funded state universities. These include 13 public 4-year universities and 14 public 2-year colleges. Of these, the largest is the University of Missouri, with campuses in Columbia, Kansas City, and St. Louis. The state is also home to a variety of private schools that provide access to higher education for students from around the world.[14]

Missouri Economy

Missouri’s economy as measured by gross domestic product by state (GSP) grew to $295.73 billion in 2021, for an increase of 4.6 percent from 2020-2021. The state ranked 22nd among all states.[15] The state’s diverse economy, which includes industries, such as manufacturing and agriculture, has helped it weather economic downturns in the past and is expected to do so in the future.

Missouri’s manufacturing industry remains a significant driver of economic development in the state, employing about 10% of the workforce. Major sectors include aerospace, transportation equipment, processed food, fabricated metals and machinery, chemicals, plastics, and rubber. Most manufacturing is centered in urban areas of the state, including St. Louis, Joplin, Springfield, Kansas City, St. Joseph, and Columbia.[16] The state is also home to several major manufacturers, including Boeing and General Motors, which have invested heavily in the state in recent years.

Tourism also plays an increasing role in the state’s economy. The Gateway Arch in St. Louis and Branson in the Ozarks draw millions of visitors to the state each year. Another important service sector of Missouri’s economy is health care with major providers concentrated in the state’s urban areas. The importance of health care is expected to continue rising as the population ages and more senior services are needed.

Missouri’s agriculture industry continues to play a significant role in the state’s economy. Agriculture, forestry, and related industries contribute more than $90 billion and more than 450,000 jobs. to the state’s economy each year.[17] The state is a major producer of soybeans, corn, and cattle and is home to several major agricultural companies, including Monsanto and Tyson Foods.

Overall, Missouri’s economy is expected to continue its steady growth, driven by a diverse range of industries. While there may be challenges ahead, such as the ongoing trade war with China, the state’s strong economic foundation and diverse industry base should help it weather any economic storms that may come its way.

Missouri Interesting Facts

The Show Me State has a diverse cultural landscape shaped by its history, geography, and diverse population. From its music to its cuisine, Missouri’s culture is a unique blend of influences from across the country and around the world.

Music Is King

One of the most distinctive cultural elements of Missouri is its music. The state has a rich tradition of blues, jazz, and country music, with famous musicians, such as Chuck Berry, Eminem, Michael McDonald, Sheryl Crow, and Sara Evans, all hailing from the Show Me State.[18] The city of St. Louis is particularly known for its blues music, with the annual St. Louis Blues Festival drawing thousands of visitors each year.

But perhaps the most famous musical venue is the southwestern Missouri town of Branson, which hosts millions of tourists each year. From a modest start when the Chamber of Commerce created the first theater in Branson in 1952, the town grew to include more than 50,000 seats in 40 theaters that showcase both local and national talent. The town has become such a popular destination that the CBS News program 60 Minutes proclaimed Branson the “country-music capital of the universe.” Today, Branson boasts more theater seats than Broadway in Manhattan.[19]

Literature and Art

Legendary author Mark Twain is perhaps Missouri’s most famous literary figure (although the author spent much of his adult life in Connecticut). His tales of life along the Mississippi and in the town of Hannibal remain giants of American literature. Poet T.S. Eliot spent his early years in St. Louis.

Missouri artists were also prominent. Both George Caleb Bingham and Thomas Hart Benton portrayed the American Midwest, while Eero Saarinen’s spectacular arch has become a symbol for the state. And local crafts, such as pottery, woodworking, and quilting, have experienced a renaissance of sorts across the state as people realize the artistic significance of these art forms.[20]

The Gateway Arch

Finally, Missouri’s history and architecture are also important cultural elements of the state. The state is home to several historic sites, including the Gateway Arch in St. Louis, which commemorates the westward expansion of the United States. Designed by Finnish-American architect Eero Saarinen, the Arch is 630 feet (39.62 m) high and 630 feet (39.62 m) wide at its base. The arch is meant to conceptualize Thomas Jefferson’s vision of building a nation that would span from the Atlantic Ocean on the east to the Pacific Ocean on the west. The Arch is also meant to commemorate Missouri’s role in serving as the launch point for settlers moving further west. Today the Arch itself and the 91 acres (36.83 hectares) surrounding it is a part of the National Park Service.[21]

Missouri History

The Show Me State has a rich history that dates back to the pre-Columbian era, when various Native American tribes inhabited the region. Over the centuries, Missouri has been shaped by a variety of factors, including its geography, economy, and politics. This section provides a brief overview of the history of Missouri, highlighting some of the key events and developments that have shaped the state over time.

Pre-Colonial History

Much of what is today the state of Missouri was a part of the Mississippian culture (ca. 800-1350).[22] The cultural hub of Mississippian society was Cahokia which sits a few miles northeast of modern-day St. Louis. It represented the largest settlement in North America north of the Aztec Empire. Scholars estimate that at its height, Cahokia was home to between 10,000 and 20,000 residents, a similar population to those of European cities of its time.

The first inhabitants of Missouri are often classified into two major groups: The Northeast Native Americans and the Plains Native Americans. The former settled in small towns and villages in the eastern parts of what is today Missouri. Their agricultural society was based on growing corn. They were also skilled hunters and gatherers. One of the prominent groups — the Missouri — gave their name to the current state. The Plains Native Americans lived in the western part of what is today Missouri and had a culture very similar to their northeastern brethern. These cultures included the Osage and Quapaw.[23]

Among the first Europeans to visit the area was Hernando de Soto who led an expedition in the region in 1541. But it was not until Sieur de la Salle travelled down the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico in 1682 that France claimed the entire region as its territory.

Pre-Civil War History

French fur traders established Ste. Genevieve in 1735, and St. Louis was first settled in 1764. By that time, France had ceded the entire Louisiana Territory to Spain in the 1762 Treaty of Fontainebleau. The Spanish, hoping to expand settlements in the vast territory, granted American Daniel Boone a considerable amount of cash to bring Americans to the region. But those efforts were short-lived because the Spanish transferred ownership back to France in 1800. Shortly thereafter, in 1803, the United States purchased the entire territory.[24] The price? About $.04 per acre ($.10 per hectare).[25]

As the nation continued to expand, Missouri applied to be a state. What should have been a fairly straightforward process, however, was anything but. In fact, the application sparked a constitutional crisis. Missouri’s application threatened to upset the delicate balance between slave and free states. Missouri was applying as a slave state. If granted, slave states would outnumber free states. After extended debate, Congress passed the Missouri Compromise of 1820 that allowed Missouri to enter the Union as a slave state and Maine as a free state, maintaining the balance of free and slave states in the Senate. It also established a line at 36°30'N, with slavery prohibited north of the line and allowed south of it.[26] This compromise temporarily eased tensions between pro-slavery and anti-slavery factions, but it ultimately failed to prevent the Civil War.

Throughout the pre-Civil War period and during the war, Missourians were sharply divided in their opinions about slavery and in their allegiances, supplying both Union and Confederate forces with troops. However, the state itself remained in the Union. The state was the site of several major battles, including the Battle of Wilson's Creek and the Battle of Lexington.

Post-Civil War History

In 1865, Missouri wrote and adopted a new constitution that prohibited slavery. Then in 1867, the state was the 17th to ratify the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution that dealt with universal citizenship rights and equal protection under the law.[27]

Throughout the remainder of the 1800s Missouri continued to grow and develop. The state became a major center of agriculture, with crops like corn, soybeans, and wheat becoming major exports. The state also became a hub of transportation, with the Missouri River and the railroads providing easy access to other parts of the country.

In the early 20th century, Missouri experienced a period of industrialization and urbanization, with cities such as St. Louis and Kansas City becoming major centers of commerce and industry.[28] The state also played a significant role in World War I, with over 156,000 Missourians serving in the armed forces.[29]

Missouri was hit hard by the economic downturn of the Great Depression. A devastating drought in the early 1930s crippled what had been a thriving agriculture industry. The slump in both agriculture and industry led to massive unemployment. For example, in 1933, the unemployment rate in St, Lous topped 30%.[30]

It was only with the American entry into World War II in 1941 that Missouri emerged from the Depression.[50] More than 450,000 Missourians served in the armed forces. And the war affected almost all aspects of life at home, with rationing and air-raid drills commonplace. Missouians grew victory gardens and volunteered for service organizations. So acute was the need for workers for defense industries that the state experienced a labor shortage. Tragically, by the end of the war, more than 8,000 Missourians had been killed.[31]

Modern History

Since 1945, Missouri has undergone significant economic, political, and societal changes. The state has transitioned from a primarily agricultural economy to a diverse economy that includes manufacturing, health care, and transportation industries. The political landscape has also shifted, with the state becoming more Republican.

One of the most significant economic changes in Missouri has been the growth of manufacturing. Companies, such as Ford, General Motors, and Boeing, have established manufacturing facilities in the state, providing jobs and boosting the economy. In recent years, the health care industry has also become a major contributor to the state's economy, with companies such as Express Scripts and Centene Corporation headquartered in the state.

The importance of agriculture to the state's economy has declined since 1945. While agriculture remains an important industry, it now accounts for a smaller percentage of the state's GDP than it did in the past. This is due in part to the growth of other industries, as well as changes in farming practices and technology. Today, however, the largest component of the state’s GDP is manufacturing which accounts for 12.3% of the total.[32]

Politically, Missouri has undergone significant changes. The state was traditionally a Democratic stronghold. Republicans began winning more offices in the late 1960s, and by the 2020s Republicans controlled all statewide offices. The state's political divisions have also become more pronounced, with rural areas becoming more conservative and urban areas becoming more liberal.[33]

Missouri has also undergone a shift in demographics, with a growing population of African Americans and Hispanics. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the African American population in Missouri increased from 4.6% in 1950 to 11.8% in 2022, while the Hispanic population grew from 0.2% in 1950 to 4.2% in 2022.[34]

People Also Ask...

That’s everything you need to know about Missouri, but how well do you know the other U.S. states and their histories? For the ultimate test, try out this challenge in which you answer questions about characteristics of the state: Infoplease's U.S. States Quiz.

People are also asking the following three questions about Missouri.

What is Missouri Known for?

Say “Missouri”and many people think of barbecue. Although the state boasts many variations, the top two are St. Louis barbecue and Kansas City barbecue. The former has thicker sauce because it does not include vinegar.[35] Both, however, are very popular. In fact, a 2022 study gave St. Louis the coveted prize of best barbecue in America. Kansas City came in second.[36]

Missouri is also known for its vibrant agricultural industry. Farms cover two-thirds of the state’s land area. The state’s 95,000 farms place it second in the U.S. behind Texas.[37]

Is Missouri a Good Place to Live?

Missouri has a lot of things going for it. For starters, compared to most other states, the cost of living is much lower. With the money you save on the essentials, you can take advantage of the thriving arts and music scene. From museums to concerts, the state has something to match all tastes.

The state also includes plenty of outdoor recreational activities. The rugged Ozark Mountains offer plenty of camping and hiking opportunities, And the state’s park system allows both Missourians and visitors to take in the natural beauty of their surroundings.[38]

What Did the French Call Missouri?

The French rarely used the term "Missouri", referring to what is today Missouri as part of the Illinois Country, which included what is today Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana. Sometimes they called the area Upper Louisiana. Most French settlers of the time were fur traders.[39]

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Encyclopedia: Geography
Encyclopedia: Economy
Encyclopedia: Government
Encyclopedia: History
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