1847: A Beautiful Village
1851-1870: Fulton: Boom & Bust
1956: Volunteer Services
1851 was a banner year for Fultonians. Observing the construction of three new institutions--the Lunatic Asylum, Westminster College, and the Missouri State Institution for the Deaf and Dumb--other new businesses quickly sprouted downtown, reflecting a prevailing optimism about the future. But as the onset of war in 1861 demonstrated so clearly, the success of the community was intimately tied to the success of its three new institutions.
"Eighteen months ago, Fulton was one of the most thrifty and enterprising inland towns in the state...Then our Deaf and Dumb Asylum was full of students; then our Insane Asylum was crowded with patients. Now these benevolent and charitable institutions are closed, or rather used as quarters for troops, the inmates—unfortunate and helpless as they are--have been thrown out—driven from a home where they were well cared for and have to seek what protection and care they can from the cold charity of strangers."
Missouri Telegraph, 25 April 1862
Row of houses in Fulton, Missouri, c 1890.
Missouri State Archives