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