Research Guides & Resources

Guides for Missouri Research

These guides are provided to connect researchers with manuscript, newspaper, photograph, reference, and other resources to begin investigating Missouri cultural, political, and genealogical history.

Children and the Cape Girardeau Steamboat African American Experience in Missouri
The story of the African American experience in Missouri is told through the personal papers of individuals and families as well as the records of black organizations and churches. Civil War pensions shed light on the aftermath of the war, while photographs, letters, scrapbooks, writings, and newspapers provide insight into the daily life of African Americans living in the state. The State Historical Society of Missouri is pleased to make available online these rich resources that document their lives as Missourians.
Battle of Wilson's Creek American Civil War in Missouri
The American Civil War in Missouri collection includes letters and diaries offering valuable insight into how Missourians, both civilians and those in the military, experienced the Civil War.
Genealogy Guides Genealogy Guides
Researchers at the State Historical Society of Missouri will find a wide variety of published and unpublished sources to help them discover their family history. The collection offers 4,500 newspapers from every Missouri county; over 250,000 books on state, local, and family history; thousands of manuscripts that include family and personal papers, oral histories, organizational and business records; maps; photographs; and an impressive art collection.
Jewish American Experience in Missouri Jewish American Experience in Missouri
Explore the experience of Jewish Americans in Missouri through the articles, newspapers, and manuscripts found in the holdings of the State Historical Society of Missouri.
Militia Research Guide Missouri Militias and National Guard
Research Missouri militias from pre- and early statehood through the Spanish-American War and the Missouri National Guard that followed in the early 20th century.
National Women and Media Collection
National Women and Media Collection
The National Women and Media Collection documents the roles women have played and are playing in media fields, both as media employees and as objects of coverage, how those roles have altered over time, and how attitudes of and towards women have changed.
World War I World War I
Collection of letters, diaries, and photographs exploring Missourians serving in the war and Missourians at home during the war.
World War II World War II
The World War II research guide is a collection of newspapers, letters, diaries, records, photographs, and memoirs written during or about wartime military service.These records help us to understand the effects the war had on Missourians fighting overseas as well as those providing strength on the home front.

Other Resources

Historic Missourians Historic Missourians
This biography resource for students creates a virtual research experience of primary source material. The name has also changed, from Famous Missourians, to reflect a focus on historically significant individuals rather than celebrities.
The Missouri Digital Newspaper Project Missouri Digital Newspaper Project
The Missouri Digital Newspaper Project is a growing collection of digitized historic newspapers published in Missouri from the eighteen hundreds through the early 1920s.
Missouri Newspapers on Microfilm Missouri Newspapers on Microfilm
Catalog lists by county of newspapers on microfilm. Microfilm reels can be viewed at all SHSMO research centers upon request and are also available through Interlibrary Loan.
Online Catalog Online Catalog
Information about SHSMO's reference and newspaper holdings is available through the online catalog.
Missouri Soicety Directory Directory of Local Historical Societies, Museums, and Genealogical Societies in Missouri
There are many historical and genealogical societies throughout the state that work to document the history of a particular town or region. Often the resources held by local and regional institutions are not available anywhere else making these institutions a valuable source for research. The Directory of Local Historical Societies, Museums, and Genealogical Societies in Missouri provides researchers the opportunity to locate or search the online resources of these institutions.
Missouri Place Names Missouri Place Names
The Place Names File compiled Professor Robert L. Ramsay during the first half of the twentieth century. The place name file includes all 114 Missouri Counties, and Kansas City.
Midwest Disc Sports Collection Midwest Disc Sports Collection
Since 1997 the Midwest Disc Sports Collection has preserved and made available primary resources documenting the history of the flying disc (Frisbee) and development of disc sports.
Midwest Disc Sports Collection Ike Skelton Collection
The papers of Democratic congressman Ike Skelton, who represented Missouri's 4th District from 1977 to 2011, consist of 270 boxes of materials including correspondence, appointment books, Congressional Research Service files, election files, photographs, and speeches.