Pettis County was organized in 1833. The county seat is Sedalia. The collections listed below deal in some manner with Pettis County. This list is not comprehensive, so be sure to browse collection descriptions by subject.
*Collections marked with DIGITIZED MATERIALS have additional digitized items available.
Agriculture Stabilization and Conservation Service Aerial Photographs, (P0335)
107.5 linear feet
Missouri county aerial photographs produced by the Agriculture Stabilization and Conservation Service.
American Revolution Bicentennial, Missouri Committee for Agriculture, Papers, 1974-1976 (C4276)
1.2 cubic feet (42 folders), 1 audio tape
The papers of the committee contain correspondence, newsletters, reports, updates, events awards programs, lists of elected members, historical information on "Centennial Farms," and "Liberty Trees," meeting minutes, announcements, newspaper clippings, and audio-visual material for a slide presentation entitled "The Spirit of 76."
Behrens, E.T., Papers, 1896-1947, (C2413)
0.9 linear feet
The papers of E.T. Behrens contain photographs, financial records, scrapbooks, correspondence, bills, receipts, and tax forms of Sedalia cigar-maker. Accounting records relate to Sedalia Independent Company and Behrens Cigar Manufacturers. Scrapbooks are collection of information preparing for 1921 Missouri centennial.
Beveridge, John L., Special Orders, 1865, (C2197)
The collection contains positive photostats of Special Orders No. 144 to investigate complaints of Dresden, Pettis County, MO, citizens against Captain Devohue and the Pettis County Volunteers Militia for alleged interference with citizens (rebels who had taken the oath) and their property.
Bishop, Rev. Maury Whipple, Photograph Collection, (P0660)
Photos of Bishop family members, Ben and Alice Dixon, dedication ceremonies for General Pershing's Home (1960, Laclede) and Liberty Memorial (1961, Kansas City), the 1949 Missouri State Fair, Longview Farm (Lee's Summit), and fountains in Forest Park (St. Louis). Postcards of Independence.
Bradley, T. T., Letter, 1859, (C2388)
The papers contain a letter to the parents of a Negro slave on behalf of their son; letter to the parents about their son; and letter to Bradley's cousins describing his return trip from Missouri to Texas after purchasing slaves.
Coombs, Kenneth E., Papers, (CA5865)
5 linear feet
Project files of a Kansas City architect related to historic restoration projects in Missouri. Includes correspondence, photographs, survey material, planning documents, financial records, and architectural drawings, 1960s-1970s.
Coontz, Joanne, Photographs, (P0283)
Photographs include: wreck of train, Engine #313 Missouri Pacific; the Gehlken Mill in Morgan County; the Curry Farm and farmhouse in Morgan County; the Gehlken Store in Pettis County, and the Gehlken and Penning families.
Culp, Henry C. (1844- ), Diary, 1874-1879, (C3736)
The collection contains a copy of a diary of a West Virginia man who came to Missouri with his family in the 1870s and settled in Webster and then Pettis Counties. The diary is primarily an account of Culp's travels from West Virginia to Missouri and Kansas, with some record of daily events over a span of five years. Also included are financial accounts, prices for food and supplies, family history, some home remedies, and three hand-drawn maps of a small section of Webster County.
Cunningham, Mr. and Mrs. Joe, Collection, (P0195)
Two real photo postcard views of train wreck near Sedalia, MO 1908 (August 21, 1986) and postcards of mid-Missouri. Photo of El Dorado Springs.
Davidson, William Lusk, Papers, 1854-2005, (C4124)
1 cubic foot
The William Lusk Davidson papers contain records regarding Davidson's education, including primary, military academy, and college, as well as papers regarding his career as a civil engineer with the railroad. There are several records pertaining to Davidson genealogy and business information, as well as papers concerning the John Wilbourn Hobbs and Myrene Houchin Hobbs Civic Award.
Dunlap, Chuck and Dianne, Postcard Collection, (P0028)
Postcards of Missouri cities, including Kansas City parks, streets, and buildings; Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City, bird's-eye view of Sedalia, Cortez Motor Court in Springfield, and St. Louis: Ead's Bridge, Shaw's Garden, and Smith Bros. Cottage and Hotel.
Edwards, John Newman (1839-1889), Letters, 1882-1885, (C1531)
The collection contains letters to Frank [James], giving him information and advice about public opinion, reward for his capture, and negotiations for his surrender to Governor Crittenden.
Fike, Henry C., (1832-1919), Diaries, 1851-1919, (C2215)
0.1 linear feet, 43 volumes
Diaries written by Fike while a student in McKendree College, IL; while a soldier in the Civil War; and about his migration to and life in Warrensburg, MO, and his work in Kansas City, MO, and various cities in the West.
Frazee, Douglas R. (1925-2014), Photographs, ca. 1880-1985, (P0072)
0.25 linear feet
Photographs of the Missouri River and life on the towboat Brownville, 1963-1985 by Frazee, an engineer on the vessel. Photos of Marshall, MO, 1948-1950, and Marthasville, MO, area in the early 1900s. Aerial photographs of Saline County, Marshall, Brookfield, and Pettis County, 1946-1949. Aerial photographs of farms and buildings along Highways 20, 24, 41 in Saline and Lafayette Counties, ca. 1947. Also include a variety of images of Missouri scenes and Missourians.
Fritts, Stella, Papers, n.d., (C3528)
A native of Sedalia, MO, Mrs. Fritts tells about her family and gives her views on politics and religion.
Gold, Samuel C. (1840-1925), Papers, 1862-1868, 1900, 1925, (C3653)
The papers contain Civil War correspondence, military forms, photographs, and newspaper clippings regarding Samuel C. Gold, Union officer, commissioner of the Freedman's Bureau, and prominent citizen of Sedalia, Missouri. Certificates of appointment, discharge papers, letter written during the siege of Corinth, Mississippi, in 1862, obituaries, and copy of manual of military science are included.
Grand Army of the Republic, Department of Missouri, Smithton Post No. 417, Records, 1889-1904, (C3739)
The collection contains photocopies of minutes, membership and attendance lists, an account book, and miscellaneous items of a Pettis County, MO, post of the Grand Army of the Republic founded in 1889.
Guitar, Sarah (1892-1963), Collection, n.d., (C3391)
1.5 cubic feet, 5 card boxes
Card file compiled by Sarah Guitar, reference librarian of the State Historical Society of Missouri, as a guide to county boundaries of Missouri, 1812-1929; Missouri congressional district boundaries, 1845-1933; Missouri senatorial districts, 1820-1931; and Missouri judicial circuits, 1815-1915.
Ingram, Nellie Allen, Scrapbooks, 1872-1946, (C2488)
News clippings and memorabilia about Nellie A. Ingram, who was well known in Sedalia in the 1880s as an elocutionist and young lady, and clippings about her father, Benton H. Ingram, a prominent Mason.
James, David A. (1937- ) Papers, 1790-2008, (C4126)
5 cubic feet
The research material of a hotel management instructor whose work resulted in the publication Historic Hotels of Missouri: Hotels, Inns, and Taverns of 19th Century Missouri.
Krause, Henrietta Park Collection, (P0171)
0.38 linear feet, 1 volume
A series of photographs from the daughter of Governor Guy B. Park, this collection includes numerous photographs of Gov. Park, a 1933 Century of Progress photo album featuring views of the Missouri Commission exhibit, a series of images on the Huckleberry Finn Streamliner dedication in Hannibal, National Governor's Conventions, the Missouri State Fair, Camp Clark in Nevada, MO, Church Prison Farm near Jefferson City, Governor Forrest Smith's Inaugeration, Mark Twain Memorial Bridge dedication, notable Missourians, elected officials, and state government staff.
Lake Creek United Methodist Church, Pettis County, Missouri, Records, 1844-1976, (C3698)
1 folder and 4 volumes on microfilm
The records of the Lake Creek United Methodist Church contain histories, minutes and membership, baptism, marriage, and funeral lists of the Versailles Mission; Florence District; later Lake Creek District; and the Lake Creek Church, Pettis County, of the Methodist Episcopal, later United Methodist, Church, founded in 1843. Volumes 1 and 2 are in German and volume 3 is partially in German.
Lamine School and Community Club, Records, (CA6438)
0.6 cubic feet, 3 volumes
Records of the Lamine School in Cooper and Pettis Counties. The school was consolidated into the Smithton School District in 1952, at which point the community purchased the building and it became a community center. The records include minutes of the Lamine Community Club.
Lamm, Henry, Papers, 1904-1916 (C0128)
0.7 linear feet
Letters of congratulation on election as justice of the Missouri Supreme Court, 1904, and Republican nomination for governor, 1916; articles; addresses; and reminiscences entitled Flatsam, Jetsam, and Ligan, stories involving a number of Missouri law cases.
Lee, Richard L. (1925-2011), County Courthouse Photographs, ca. 1955, (P0003)
The collection includes photographs of county courthouses for the state of Missouri, taken in the mid-twentieth century by Richard L. Lee.
Matthews, Sherman, Papers, 1923-1930, (C4275)
0.4 cubic feet (16 folders)
Kansas City Bridge Company business correspondence of Sherman Matthews and H.M. Jopling. Also Jopling's Nelson High School Physics Experiment workbooks and a standard two-week time book to calculate wages owed, 1923-1930.
McCormick, Mamie J., Papers, 1818-1952, (C2094)
Genealogical material gathered by McCormick concerning the McCormick and other related families who settled in Pettis County, MO. Includes photocopy of pension application of Revolutionary War veteran George McCormick; will of George McCormick; deposition of Massina Moreau McCormick, an early Missouri settler; and lists of those buried in family cemeteries in Pettis County and from family Bibles.
Missouri Department of Transportation, Photographs, (P0453)
0.5 linear feet
Photos of State Highway Commision members, Ronald Reagan speaking at the Missouri State Fair, the Missouri State Highway Takeover program, and Missouri bridges, businesses, and historic sites.
Missouri Extension Homemakers Association, Inc., "Sacred Stones and Stained Glass Windows," Project, 1977-1980, (C3723)
7.1 cubic feet
Statewide documentation of local churches by county. Includes cultural arts reports, church histories, floor plans, architectural details, clippings, slides, photographs, and miscellany.
Missouri Trust Company, Sedalia, Missouri, Debenture, 1891, (C1600)
Debenture for fifty pounds to Lionel Fitzgerald Kirwan, Collin, Castle Douglas, Great Britain, from the Missouri Trust Company.
Missouri, Boone County, Records, 1821-1914, (C3041)
Early minutes of the Boone County Court, 1821-1822, 1830-1839. Deposition and will of Ira Nash in early court case, 1844. Minutes and premium book of the Boone County Agricultural and Mechanical Society, 1852-1874, Registration books for physicians, surgeons, dentists and osteopaths, 1874-1914. Books listing marks and brands and dog registrations for Boone County.
Missouri. Circuit Court, 6th, Pettis County, Record Book, 1870-1875, (C1202)
Record book of court cases, containing synopsis of each case, listing witnesses, and giving the outcome.
Missouri, Pettis County. School Sub-District No. 4, Township No. 47, Range No. 23, Record Book, 1870-1873, (C1203)
Record of expenses incurred by the local directors. Receipts and expenditures.
Missouri, Sedalia, Credit Record Book, 1873-1881, (C1248)
The records contain credit records of individuals and businesses in Sedalia. Includes newspaper clippings of business transactions or any items of information affecting the financial status of the businessmen.
Mitchell, Ewing Young, Jr. (1873-1954), Papers, 1840-1949 (C1041)
0.4 linear feet
Papers of a Springfield, Missouri, lawyer active in Democratic Party politics, who served as assistant secretary of commerce in Franklin Roosevelt's first administration. Material concerns family affairs, law practice with emphasis on county indebtedness, Ozark land speculation, and Democratic politics on the state and national levels.
Morrow, Lynn, Collection, 1982-ca. 2010, (R1000)
296 folders, 7 cubic feet
These are the correspondence and research files of a Missouri historian. Topics include history, personages, architecture, culture, and folklore, particularly of the Ozarks region of Missouri, but also areas in the central and northern parts of the state. The papers include wide-ranging correspondence concerning research into and publication of the 19th century historical writings of Theodore P. Russell of Iron County and Silas C. Turnbo of southwest Missouri. The collection also includes a large selection of promotional publications and ephemera associated with late 20th century tourism in Missouri and Arkansas.
Nelson, Arthur T., Collection, n.d., (C3745)
The records contain 26 photographs of the Missouri State Fair in Sedalia, taken by A.B. Duncan of Springfield, Missouri. Views include architecture and livestock exhibitions. Photos were apparently taken in the early years of the fair.
Nolen, Rose M. (1935-2015), Papers, 1873-2004, (C4227)
1 cubic foot (41 folders)
The papers of Rose Nolen contain clippings, research materials, and manuscript drafts of a Sedalia, Missouri, journalist. Topics include the Katy Depot in Sedalia, the Methodist Inner City Church in Kansas City, Black Panthers and the Black Power Movement, Bothwell Regional Medical Center, and Sedalia history.
Petefish, David W., Commission, 1871, (C1625)
Commission as public administrator for Pettis County, MO, to complete unexpired term of James S. Porter. Signed by B. Gratz Brown.
Presbytery of Missouri, Minutes, 1920-1943, (C1353)
0.2 linear feet
The records contain official copies of minutes of the Presbytery of Missouri. Minutes for 1920-1939 are bound; others are in pamphlet form.
Presbytery of Missouri Records, 1817-1920, (C1354)
1.4 linear feet, 6 oversize volumes
The records of the Presbytery of Missouri contain minutes, reports, and other records of an organization composed of ministers and representative elders of Presbyterian churches in Missouri. Volumes 1-6 have been microfilmed. Volume 7 is available onsite. See also collection C1353.
Ramsay Place Names File 1928-1945, (C2366)
12 cubic feet
Card file of origins of Missouri place names, compiled by students of Robert L. Ramsay, University of Missouri professor of English.
Raut, Irwin, Papers, 1871-1927, (C2410)
8 folders, 1 volume
The papers of Irwin Raut contain miscellaneous material, including price lists for trunks (1874-1879), railway schedules, information on Sedalia and St. Louis, and a scrapbook of poetry.
Rice, Mr. and Mrs. Harry, Postcard Collection, (P0497)
Postcards of Missouri scenes: St. Joseph, Gallatin, Lebanon, Slater, Maryville, Branson, Jefferson City, Sedalia, St. Louis, and Kansas City.
Sampson, Francis Asbury (1842-1918), Collection, 1796-1958, (C3813)
12.9 linear feet
This collection, compiled by Sampson, includes Democratic and Republican party campaign literature for national and Missouri elections, 1838-1958; speeches and pamphlets concerning national and state political issues; materials concerning the history of Boone, Schuyler, Pettis, and Ste. Genevieve counties and Sedalia; papers of Garland C. Broadhead and William Switzler; and speeches, notes, bibliographies, and personal papers of Sampson.
Sedalia Board of Trade, Sedalia, Missouri, Proceedings, 1872-1888, (C1247)
The collection contains the minutes of a group of businessmen organized to promote Sedalia.
Sedalia Commercial Club, Sedalia, Missouri, Guest Book, 1889-1895, (C1250)
The collection contains a register of club visitors.
Sedalia Library Association, Sedalia, Missouri, Minute Book, 1871-1874, (C1249)
The records contain minutes, roll of members and subscribers, constitution, and articles of association. Also some Pettis County historical data.
Smithton United Methodist Church, Smithton, Missouri, Records, 1865-1954, (C3704)
19 volumes on 2 microfilm reels
The records of the Smithton United Methodist Church contain church membership records and minutes for the Ladies Aid Society, the Woman's Foreign Missionary Society, and the Woman's Society of Christian Service, of the English and German churches which united in 1924 to form the Smithton United Methodist Church of Smithton, Pettis County, MO.
State of Missouri Collection, (P0018)
Over 400 original photos created for the 1904 publication on Missouri at the time of the World's Fair by Walter Williams; shows all aspects and counties in Missouri.
Sterett, Smith A. ( -1887), Papers, 1861-1899, (C2074)
The papers of Smith A. Sterett contain letters from business associates, friends, and family; business papers; Sterett's Confederate Army discharge; and an elementary spelling book. Sterett was a Montana Territory prospector, Helena, MT, merchant, and Nevada, MO, hardware merchant.
Switzler, William Franklin, (1819-1906), Scrapbooks, n.d., (C1444)
Miscellaneous newspaper clippings attributed to William F. Switzler. Volume 3 contains a handwritten description of Sedalia, MO, around 1865 with pictures of Sedalia buildings and countryside.
Tayloe Family, Papers, 1879-1942, (C2510)
4 linear feet
The papers of the Tayloe Family contain personal letters and business papers of the John R. Tayloe family of Bem and Owensville, MO. The collection includes correspondence to John R. Tayloe, his sons John L. and William L. Tayloe, and his wife Lizzie Miller Tayloe from relatives and friends concerning family affairs, farming, and teaching. Some business papers are also included.
The Missouri Collection, (C3982)
The Missouri Collection is an artificial collection combining miscellaneous small acquisitions related to Missouri places, individuals, organizations, and events.
Tolson, Fannie Marie (1911-2005), Papers, 1890s-2005, (C1704)
2.3 linear feet, 3 audio cassettes, 2 video cassettes, 1 dvd
Fannie Marie Tolson was the first African-American educator to teach in the desegregated schools of Fayette, Missouri. Her papers include family correspondence and photographs, memorabilia from Lincoln University, Jefferson City, Missouri, teaching aids, documents concerning St. Paul's Methodist Church in Fayette, and recordings of two interviews conducted with Tolson.
Troxell, Belle Alexander, Collection, 1857-1951, (C3460)
Programs, clippings, photographs, postcards and miscellaneous items, collected by a Columbia, MO, resident and member of several women's organizations.
U.S. Post Office, Sedalia, Missouri, Records, 1879-1916, (CA3175)
4 linear feet
Letter books containing correspondence between the U.S. Post Office at Sedalia, Missouri, and the Post Office and U.S. Treasury Departments in Washington, D.C. Also policy circulars, directives, vouchers, and check letters.
U.S. Selective Service System, Missouri, Records, 1917-1918, (C2681)
445 folders negative Photostats, 8.7 cubic feet
Lists of persons by county and district selective service boards whose cards were held by those boards. Arranged alphabetically by county.
U.S. Work Projects Administration, "Church Bibliography, Baptist Bodies of Missouri, Associational Minutes," 1941, (C1312)
The collection contains a list of the various Baptist associations in Missouri and the dates for which their records are in existence.
U.S. Work Projects Administration, Historical Records Survey, Missouri, 1935-1942, (C3551)
302 linear feet; also available on 817 rolls of microfilm
Correspondence, records, and working files. Originally designed to survey and inventory all county government records, the survey finally included inventories of church records, manuscript collections, vital statistics, American imprints, and federal archives. Incorporates records of the Federal Writers Project for Missouri.
University of Missouri, Agricultural Extension Service, Records, 1908-1963, (C2513)
1.5 linear feet
The records of the University of Missouri Agricultural Extension Service contain histories, letters, reports, memoranda, speeches, maps, publications, newspaper articles, and pictures concerning Missouri Agricultural Extension Service and U.S. Department of Agriculture policies; agricultural, home economics, and 4-H extension work; and the College of Agriculture.
Wallace, C.T., Album, (P0309)
64 black and white matte photographs, mostly 5x7, showing views of mainly Pettis, Lafayette and Saline counties. Includes images relating to the Methodist church, cats, farming, the Missouri Pacific Railroad, rivers and creeks.
Whiteman Air Force Base Dedication Collection, 1955, (K0338)
0.01 cubic feet
Correspondence and clippings regarding the invitation of guests to the Whiteman Air Force Base Dedication. There are also newspaper articles referencing the event and the presence of B-47 bombers at the base at that time.
Williams, C.C., Papers, 1897, (C1530)
The papers contain a quitclaim deed to Williams of Pettis County, MO, from the Equitable Fire and Marine Insurance Company and the Merchants Insurance Company, under the name of Rhode Island Underwriters Association.
Williams, Roy D. (1881-1972), Papers, 1853-1972, (C3769)
2 linear feet
Papers of Judge Roy D. Williams of Boonville, Missouri, containing speeches (primarily on local and regional history), historical notes, clippings, correspondence, photographs, and miscellany.