SHSMO Explores Origins of the American Dream

The American Dream holds a powerful place in our imagination. When did this idea come about, how did it change over time, and how have we come to define it? These questions and more will be probed by author and “celebrity historian” Raffi Andonian, who will be the featured speaker at the State Historical Society of Missouri’s History on Elm program, Tuesday, April 9, noon- 1 p.m. at the Center for Missouri Studies, 605 Elm St., Columbia.

From the early theological ideals of the Puritans and the public-private partnership of the Virginia Company to commemoration of overlooked historical figures on the money in our pocket today, our disagreements on public policy are often rooted in different understandings and experiences about this country's promise. Andonian will take us on a journey of the American Dream, an ethos that continues to inspire U.S.

Andonian has made over 150 television appearances on network stations across the country and is the author of multiple books on American history. He is the producer and host of Clio The Muse television show on Apple TV, and teaches history at Harris Stowe State University in St. Louis. He has worked as a park ranger at the Gettysburg Battlefield and other National Park Service sites and as a former educator at the birthplace of the atomic bomb for the Los Alamos Historical Society. He has also guided visitors at the birth home and childhood neighborhood of the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in Atlanta. 

The State Historical Society’s History on Elm series explores a variety of topics on the second Tuesday of the month at noon, ranging from Missouri art and authors to unique and interesting collections at the State Historical Society. The series is free to the public and registration is not required. For more information, visit