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22, September 2016

Navigating Race: Route 66 and the Green Book

The words welcoming and friendly are often used when describing Route 66, but for African American travelers, cruising Route 66 could be an ordeal. They were regularly turned down when requesting a place to sleep, eat, fix their cars, or answer nature’s call. Families heading out on Route 66 would pack food, toilet paper, jugs of water, and car-repair tools, because chances were good they’d find themselves on their own even in the middle of a town. Read more »

12, September 2016

How Charles Clement Holt Captured STL

Following is an excerpt from our newest book, Capturing the City: Photographs from the Streets of St. Louis, 1900–1930, written by Joseph Heathcott and Angela Dietz. You can pick up a copy online or in the Museum Shop. You can also view a selection of these images in the accompanying exhibit in the Museum's Atrium.
9, September 2016

Welcome Back, Motel St. Louis!

The Motel St. Louis—or at least its sign—is back home. Fifty years after being removed from its location on Route 66 near Lambert Airport, the motel sign has returned to St. Louis for the exhibit Route 66: Main Street Through St. Louis, open through July 16, 2017. Read more »

2, February 2016

Spies, Traitors, Saboteurs: Fear and Freedom in America

Today, it seems like we can’t go to any of our favorite news sites without seeing at least one story about terrorism and sabotage. The threat of terrorism is a part of every news cycle, a part of the conversations that Americans from New York to Los Angeles are having with their family and friends. All this talk of terrorism and internal threats makes it seem like we’ve entered a new era in American history. In some ways this isn’t wrong. The word "terrorism" is fairly new; it wasn’t used widely until the 1970s although it was originally coined during the French Revolution in the 1790s. Read more »

12, January 2016

Where Did You Go To High School?

This question is a common one in St. Louis, where an alma mater is a high school, not a college, and where using high school as an identifier is an often accepted ritual. But can the answer to that question really sum up all of the experiences of high school? Read more »

16, November 2015

St. Louis's French Connection and Coffee

 

Most coffee historians are amazed to find out that coffee played such a big part in St. Louis’s history. Because the city is in “flyover country,” without easy access to a coastal shipping port, many people don’t realize that, historically, St. Louis was at the center of a major trade route. Many factors came into play to create something of a “perfect storm” for the coffee industry to boom in St. Louis. Read more »

12, November 2015

Do You Still Have the Buffalo Head? and Other Burning Questions

As though they are inquiring about an old acquaintance, visitors to the Missouri History Museum occasionally ask about a particular artifact. Some objects, such as Charles Lindbergh’s trophies, Veiled Prophet Court gowns, and World War I weapons, have been gone from view for some time. But I’ve managed to locate some requested items in the Currents and Reflections galleries, and I’ve marveled at the reactions that followed. Read more »

15, October 2015

A Most-Happy Surprise: Coffee Exhibit Delights Future Groom

A few weeks before the premiere of Coffee: The World in Your Cup & St. Louis in Your Cup, a visitor asked me a question about offerings in the Museum Shop. She was planning her son’s wedding rehearsal dinner at Bixby’s (the Museum’s restaurant), and because he is so fond of coffee she had chosen to use it as a theme. Boy, was she shocked to learn about the Coffee exhibit right here in the Museum! We chatted about her ideas for table favors and decorations, and I said to her, “Before you go to the gift shop, I’d like to show you something.” Read more »

22, September 2015

Gallery Glimpse: The Art of Coffee

What has approximately 260,000 coffee beans and requires the help of more than 40 MHM staff and volunteers? It's a five-panel mosaic composed of six shades of coffee beans, each one glued by hand onto the panels. When complete, the five panels will be hung together to form an 8 by 20 foot view of the St. Louis skyline, which will be on display in Coffee: The World in Your Cup & St. Louis in Your Cup, opening October 3. Read more »