Guide to Civil War Resources at the Missouri State Archives

Civil War Centennial Commission of Missouri

In a July 1958 proclamation, Governor James T. Blair created the Civil War Centennial Commission to give recognition to Civil War events in Missouri and commemorate them to emphasize the importance of "the preservation of the American Union as an instrumentality of freedom." The ten-member commission included a chairman, and served with no pay and two General Assembly appropriations from 1958 to approximately 1967; the last official actions of the commission appear to have been during 1965.

Record Group 403: Civil War Centennial Commission of Missouri, Correspondence, 1958-1967; arranged chronologically.

This series includes incoming and outgoing correspondence from Commission member James R. Fuchs, of the Truman Library, and Commission chairman Dr. Bert E. Maybee concerning commission meetings, the National Civil War Centennial Commission, lecture presentations, commemorative events, appropriations, and the American Landmarks Celebration. Correspondence also covers plan for the commemoration of the battles of Wilson's Creek, Lexington, Carthage, Pilot Knob, Westport, and Athens, as well as the marking of Camp Jackson. The men also corresponded about plans for a plaque at Wilson's Creek, the dedication of the Lone Jack Battlefield Museum, and preservation of the Cannonball House in Athens. Correspondents include Harry Truman among others.

Record Group 403: Civil War Centennial Commission of Missouri, Reference Files, undated; arranged topically, then chronologically within the topic.

This series includes various compilations of Civil War battles and events in Missouri, bibliographies, pamphlets, maps, and announcements. There is material concerning the commemorations of the battles of Wilson's Creek and Lexington. Additional material consists of Civil War centennial items from other states and miscellaneous photographs, as well as information from the National Civil War Centennial Commission.

Record Group 403: Civil War Centennial Commission of Missouri, Newspaper Clippings Files, undated; arranged topically.

This series contains newspaper clippings concerning the Commission, specific commemorative events in Missouri, and general historical articles. The largest group of articles relate many aspects of the Civil War era, including soldiers' lives, descriptions of specific battles, analyses of the war, and particular war figures, including Confederate General Robert E. Lee.