Archery is a method of shooting a projectile point secured to the tip of a shaft propelled by a bow: the age-old “bow and arrow.” Archery dates back tens of thousands of years, and its uses range from hunting and warfare to target shooting. In Missouri, archery took on special significance when in 1966 Kansas City resident Holless W. Allen submitted a patent for the compound bow, which was approved in 1969. Allen’s invention revolutionized archery because his pulley design created a mechanical advantage that allowed a person to draw more pounds of force than otherwise capable.

Other Missouri archery connections include the Archery Hall of Fame & Museum in Springfield; the Missouri National Archery in the Schools Program run by the Department of Conservation, which teaches target archery to students in grades 4 through 12; and, the Grayson Archery Collection and Library at the University of Missouri Museum of Anthropology, one of the largest and most comprehensive collections in the world containing over 5,500 pieces representing six continents.


Revised Statutes of Missouri (RSMo)

§10.245. Archery, official state sport. – Archery is selected for and shall be known as the official state sport. Archery was revolutionized by Missourian Holless Wilbur Allen in 1966 with his invention of the compound bow. Participation in the sport can span all ages, sizes, and abilities.

approved 01 July 2022
effective 28 August 2022


Photo Gallery:

Click on an image below to enlarge and read a caption. This will open a new window in the Missouri State Symbols Flickr album.

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Additional Resources:

Allen’s original patent titled “Archery Bow with Draw Force Multiplying Attachments,” submitted 06/23/1966, approved 12/30/1969, patent no. 3,486,495:

Archery Hall of Fame & Museum, Inc.:

Grayson Archery Collection: Click the collection and sign in as Guest. 

Missouri National Archery in the Schools Program (MONASP):


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