Missouri Overview

Abbreviated as MO, Missouri is named for the Native Americans the Missouris (people of the large canoes) who inhabited the fertile lands around the tributaries of the Mississippi and Missour rivers. Federal state of the United States. The capital is the city of Jefferson.

It limits the north with Iowa; to the east, bordering the Mississippi River, with Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee; to the south with Arkansas; and to the west with Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska (both bordering the Missouri River).


The French founding of Sainte Geneviève, in 1735, marked the first European settlement in the Missouri region, which was then a part of the French territory of Louisiana. The second European settlement in the state was Saint Louis, established as a commercial factory in 1764; a year later, the French ceded Louisiana to Spain. Louisiana was returned to France in 1800 and sold to the United States three years later. In 1812, the Missouri Territory was created.

Beginning in 1815, immigration grew rapidly and was favored when, in 1816, the first steamboat reached Saint Louis. On August 10, 1821, Missouri was admitted to the Union as a slave state, under the terms of the Missouri Compromise.

In the early years of the 19th century, although a slave owner, Missouri was not an ardent defender of slavery, so the controversy on this topic was very wide. When Abraham Lincoln won the presidential election, the state government called a convention to reconsider its relationship with the Union; in the vote, the secessionist delegates were defeated and it was declared that there was no cause to break with the Union.

Natural resources

Karst, fountains and caves in Missouri

Karst is a landscape characterized by the presence of caves, springs, wells and streams. Due to this karst topography, Missouri is home not only to great rivers and beautiful streams, there are abundant underground water resources. Fifty-nine percent of the state is supported by units of thick, carbonate rocks that harbor a wide variety of karst features. There are more than 6,000 known caves in Missouri.

A spring database maintained by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources currently has more than 3,000 sources in the state. The Greene County reports more than 2,500, and Perry County reports more than 7,000. Flows from losing surface currents have not been inventoried across the state, but there are hundreds of miles of lost recorded sections, and probably twice as much as that which is not recorded.

Missouri History


North of the Missouri River, the northern plains extend to Iowa, Nebraska and Kansas, where there are gentle ridges created by a glacier that once extended north to the Missouri River.

The Ozark Plateau begins south of the river and goes into Arkansas and Oklahoma. The city of Springfield is located on the Ozark Plateau. Southern Missouri is home to the Ozark Mountains and extends into Arkansas.

In the southeastern part of the state we find the bootheel, part of the Mississippi floodplain. This region is the lowest, flat and humid zone of the state. It is also the most fertile and where rice and cotton are produced.

Major cities

  • Kansas city
  • Louis
  • Springfield
  • Independence
  • Columbia
  • Lee’s Summit
  • O’Fallon
  • Joseph
  • Charles


Colleges and universities

The postsecondary education system in Missouri is comprised of 13 public junior colleges and universities (four years), one public junior college (two years), 25 private colleges and universities, and 120 privately owned schools. exclusive that teach university studies to more than 360,000 students.

Mississippi, Missouri… rivers of legend

The fabulous rivers that have inspired so many novels bathe and surround the city. Other lesser-known ones also do it, such as the Meramec and des Peres rivers, which also irrigate the county of Sant Louis. The Mississippi crosses the longest stretch and is the natural border of St Louis with East St. Louis, in the neighboring State of Illinois. The Eads Bridge, the first highway and the first railroad bridge to cross the Mississippi River, dating back to 1874, is still standing. Its most important tributary is the MissouriRiver, which flows into it to the north of the city, leaving it aside but going through many of the small towns that surround it.

The river des Peres is like the Spanish river Guadiana, which appears and disappears. Much of its route is underground, on the southwest edge of the city, and its course has been modified so that, through artificial canals, it functions as part of the St. Louis sewersystem. The Meramec travels through the south of the city without entering it, after passing through the high lands of the Ozark, from the Meramec fall and before discharging its waters in the Mississippi.

Mississippi River

  • Length: 3,734 km
  • Hydrographic basin: 2,981,076 km²
  • Flow: 16,790 m³ / s
  • Source: Lake Itasca
  • Mouth: Gulf of Mexico
  • Country: United States
  • Bridges: Eads Bridge, Chain of Rocks Bridge, More

Missouri River

  • Length: 3,767 km
  • Flow: 2,445 m³ / s
  • Mouth: Mississippi River
  • Birth: Brower’s Spring
  • Country: United States
  • Cities: Great Falls
  • Bridges: Meridian Highway Bridge, Plattsmouth Bridge