Religion Research Guide

Articles from Missouri Historical Review and Missouri Times


The State Historical Society of Missouri manuscript collections contain various papers and records related to religion and religious activities in the state. The papers of clergy and active laypersons, missionaries, and circuit riders; materials concerning religious experiences, including the occult; writings on religious subjects; and denominational and individual church records and histories can all be found within the collections. Examples include the Reverend Marguerite Shirley Kenney Papers, the Raymond Bennett Bragg Papers, and the Church Women United in Missouri, Columbia Unit, Records.

View All Religion Manuscript Collections


Religious publications are of special interest to both genealogists and historians. Many Protestant denominations, including Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Cumberland Presbyterian, Lutheran, and Church of God, are represented by publications in the collection. Mormon, Catholic, and Jewish papers are also available. Publications in the collection date from the 1840s to the present.

Genealogists may find that these newspapers provide notices of otherwise undiscovered life events. Baptisms, marriages, and deaths are often reported. The information presented varies from informative obituaries to lists of names and local church affiliations, to beautiful eulogies that contain little family information beyond the name of the spouse and the number of children. Whether or not these papers carry information about the general membership, they almost always include obituaries or death notices for members of the clergy. Because these periodicals were often the official statewide organ of a denomination, the lists or notices were usually printed several weeks after the event.

These papers contain much information regarding church viewpoints and reactions to national and local events that will interest historians. Disagreements between various factions within churches have resulted in many provocative letters to the papers, followed by further commentary or rebuttals. These present insights into the feelings and reactions of members as well as church officials.

For a list of all digitized newspapers, visit the Missouri Digital Newspaper Project.

For a list of newspapers on microfilm at The State Historical Society of Missouri, visit the newspaper catalog.

CountyCityTitleAvailable OnDate Range
BooneCentraliaCentralia Christian WorkerMicrofilm1894-1895
BooneCentraliaCentralia Methodist FlashMicrofilm1894-1895
Boone Missouri MethodistMicrofilm1969-1973
BuchananSt. JosephThe Catholic Tribune And Conception StarMicrofilm1896-1942
ColeJefferson CityCatholic MissourianMicrofilm1957-current
ColeJefferson CityJefferson City PresbyterianMicrofilm2002-2003
ColeJefferson CityJefferson City PresbyterianewsMicrofilm1985-1999
DadeEvertonGeneral BaptistMicrofilm1903-1905
FranklinNew HavenChristian NewsMicrofilm1968-current
JacksonKansas CityCatholic KeyMicrofilm1970-current
JacksonKansas CityCatholic RegisterMicrofilm1903-1905
JacksonKansas CityCatholic ReporterMicrofilm1903-1905
JacksonKansas CityNational Catholic ReporterMicrofilm1903-1905
 Kansas CityKansas City Deaconess 1908-1943
Jefferson Missouri MethodistMicrofilm1961-1968
LawrenceAuroraChristian HeraldMicrofilm1903-1903
LivingstonChillicotheChristian PioneerMicrofilm1869-1870
MarionHannibalThe Baptist BulletinMicrofilm1898
PettisSedaliaSedalia Weekly Conservator 1903-1908
PlatteParkvilleParkville The Christian WorkerMicrofilm1883
Randolph Missouri MethodistMicrofilm1953-1954
Saline Saline County PresbyterianMicrofilm1893
Shelby Missouri MethodistMicrofilm1955-1957
St. Louis Herald of Religious LibertyMicrofilm1846
St. Louis Missouri United MethodistMicrofilm1973
St. Louis Missouri United Methodist ReporterMicrofilm1975-1981
St. Louis St. Louis United Methodist ReporterMicrofilm1978-1995
St. LouisBallwinUnited Methodist ReviewMicrofilm1995-2004
St. Louis East United Methodist ReporterMicrofilm1981-1983, 1986-1995
St. Louis Catholic News LetterMicrofilm1845-1846
St. Louis Church Progress and Catholic WorldMicrofilm1903-1911
St. Louis Church ProgressMicrofilm1911-1929
St. Louis Central Christian AdvocateMicrofilm1853, 1865-1866, 1873, 1876, 1886-1900
St. Louis ChristianMicrofilm1876
St. Louis St. Louis Christian AdvocateMicrofilm1850-1931
St. Louis St. Louis Christian NewsMicrofilm1876
St. Louis Missouri PresbyterianMicrofilm1866-1870
St. Louis Old School PresbyterianMicrofilm1870-1872, 1874
St. Louis Saint Louis PresbyterianMicrofilm1851, 1856-1858, 1874
St. Louis Saint Louis Presbyterian and The Memphis PresbyterianMicrofilm1874-1878
St. Louis St. Louis PresbyterianMicrofilm1884, 1887, 1890, 1893
St. Louis American BaptistMicrofilm1893
St. Louis Central BaptistMicrofilm1876, 1898-1912
St. Louis Lutheran Witness ReporterMicrofilm1965-1975
St. Louis St. Louis LutheranMicrofilm1948-1960, 1975-2003
St. Louis St. Louis EvangelistMicrofilm1875-1877, 1883-1887
St. Louis St. Louis Evangelist and The Mid-ContinentMicrofilm1887