Missouri Genealogy | Iron County Missouri Genealogy
| Reynolds County Missouri Genealogy
Genealogy Information, Resources and Links
Southeast Missouri Genealogy and History
your family history in Missouri is often very challenging. Although
this site focuses on Iron County, MO and Reynolds County,
MO in Southeast Missouri, we are also providing early Missouri
history and information in hopes of making things easier for
anyone researching Missouri Genealogy. Being aware of
specific dates and timelines in Missouri history will enable
you, the genealogist, to establish guidelines for your genealogy
research, saving both time and effort.
Missouri Genealogy - Important Dates in Missouri
It is believed by many historians that De Soto explored
our region while pursuing his dream to find a northern passageway
to China back in 1541. After "discovering the Mississippi
River", he crossed from Kaskaskia (Illinois) into our
region, meeting five different tribes of Native Americans
along his trek through what is now Southern Missouri
continuing on into Arkansas. If you are interested in
reading more, please see this article: Missouri
Native American History
Missouri is "Discovered"
It was not until 1673, when Father Jacques Marquette and Louis
Joliet (who are most often credited with the discovery of
Missouri) sailed down the Mississippi River in canoes along
the area that would later become Missouri. The two established
that the Mississippi River ran all the way to the sea.
Missouri becomes part of the "Upper
Louisiana Territory in 1682
In 1682, Robert de LaSalle claimed the Louisiana Territory
for France ("New France" or Louisiana,
was named to honor Louis XIV). In addition to present
day Missouri, the territory included all or part of present-day
Louisiana, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota,
North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, Montana, Colorado, Idaho.
Soon French settlers were establishing trading posts and forts
in the new territory. During the early years of French occupation,
trade with the Indians was the only major industry.
and settlement begins in considerable numbers in 1720
As early as 1720, immigrants were settling in the region of
"Upper Louisiana" in considerable numbers, both
by way of the Great Lakes and the mouth of the Mississippi.
In the same year, the Frenchman Phillippe François
Renault brought the first black slaves (from Haiti) to Missouri
to work in lead mining. William Henry Pulsifer, in his book
"Notes for a History of Lead", published in 1888,
indicated that the French, in search of silver, began
lead mining as early as 1723 in Mine La Motte, and in Potosi
First white settlers found Ste.
Genevieve in 1750
In 1750, the first white settlers founded nearby Ste. Genevieve
as the first permanent white settlement in "upper Louisiana"
(although there are some reports that Ste. Genevieve was founded
as early as 1732-1734). It was a confusing time for these
early settlers because in 1762, Spain gained control of the
Louisiana Territory in the Treaty of Fontainebleau, but did
not "officially assume control of the territory until
The Louisiana Territory is sold
to the United States in 1803
maintained control until 1800 when France was able to briefly
regain some of their former possessions in North America from
the Spanish. After a 20-day interlude of French control of
Louisiana, Napoleon abandoned his dreams of creating a North
American empire after his troops were defeated in Saint-Domingue
(now Haiti). The treaty between Spain and France was
kept secret and Louisiana remained under Spanish control until
a transfer of power to France in 1803. Almost miraculously,
the entire Louisiana territory was sold to the United States
for $15,000,000 in May of 1803.
and Clark set out from St. Louis in 1804
One of Missouri’s nicknames is "Gateway to the
West". In 1804 Lewis and Clark set out from St. Louis
not only to map this new region, but to also evaluate the
potential of westward expansion at the behest of President
Thomas Jefferson, an advocate of western expansion. The expedition
led all the way to the Pacific Ocean. The California Gold
Rush began in 1848 and Missouri once again became the departure
point for those heading to California, earning Missouri its
Louisiana Territory is renamed the Missouri Territory in 1812
After Louisiana became a state in 1812,
the remaining Upper Louisiana Territory was renamed the Missouri
Territory and was divided in to five original counties.
Our present Iron and Reynolds counties
were considered a part of the new county of Ste.Genevieve
in the new Missouri Territory.
Missouri is admitted as the 24th
state in the Union in 1821
In 1818 the first Missouri Constitution was drafted and in
the same year, a request was made for admittance to the Union
as a slave state. After a national controversy due to the
delicate balance between free and slave states, Missouri was
admitted as the 24th state in the Union in 1821.
Missouri becomes embroiled in the
Civil War in 1861
The five slave-holding border states—Missouri,
Kentucky, Maryland, West Virginia and Delaware—belonged
to the Union, but their citizens were divided in allegiance.
Missouri was a friend to both sides,
sending men and supplies to both the Confederate and Union
forces, it had a star on both flags and state governments
on each side as well. More Civil War battles
or engagements were fought in Missouri than in any other state
besides Virginia and Tennessee. In 1861, the year the
war started, 45 percent of all battles and all casualties
were in Missouri. More Civil War generals are buried
at St. Louis than at Arlington or West Point.
Watch the movie about our beautiful Iron and Reynolds Counties in Missouri
See footprints of the past left by the early settlers to our region and the beauty
that surrounded them.
Iron County Missouri and Reynolds County Missouri are in the beautiful
Arcadia Valley Region and Black River Recreation Area of Missouri
only 80 miles from St. Louis
Take a Family History Vacation to our beautiful area!
information about our region visit www.missouri-vacations.com