Advertisement for MHM's "#1 in Civil Rights" exhibit
Past St. Louis Cardinals baseball players
Advertisement for MHM's "Show Me 66" documentary
Images of rain in St. Louis
10, May 2010

Lena Horne, 1917–2010

Lena Horne, the first African American performer to win a long-term contract from a major Hollywood studio, died on May 9, 2010, at the age of 92. She is best known for the movie Stormy Weather, which also featured dancer and East St. Louisan Katherine Dunham. Musician Cab Calloway was also a big influence on Horne’s success, having appeared in films and musical revues with her. Calloway was the godfather of MHM author Gail Milissa Grant, and when Horne visited St. Read more »

10, May 2010

Unveiling the Vatican's Splendors

On May 6, members of the St. Louis media were given a sneak peek at three artifacts from the upcoming exhibition, Vatican Splendors: A Journey through Faith and Art, which opens on Saturday, May 15, at the Missouri History Museum.

Following a brief overview of the exhibit by Dr. Robert R. Archibald, president of the Missouri History Museum, Vatican curator Robert Zagnoli, through an interpreter, discussed each artifact that would be unveiled, including two that had never been shown outside of the Vatican. Read more »

4, May 2010

The Saint Louis Zoo: If Not Forest Park, Where?

Editor’s note: This is the first in a series of articles exploring the history of the Saint Louis Zoo as it celebrates its centennial. The History Museum has partnered with the Zoo to develop an exhibit chronicling its first 100 years. Zootennial will open May 15 and will be located on the Zoo grounds in the 1917 Elephant House, now Peabody Hall. Read more »

4, May 2010

Vatican Splendors Come to St. Louis after 106 Years

You probably have heard the exciting news that the exhibit Vatican Splendors: A Journey through Faith and Art is opening at the Missouri History Museum on May 15, 2010. But did you know that other treasures from the Vatican have been displayed in St. Louis before? In 1904 at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (LPE), or St. Louis World’s Fair, many works of art were featured in the Vatican Exhibit in the Anthropology Building. The Fair’s president, David R. Read more »

29, April 2010

After the Final Curtain

How do you safely store a fragile, 60-year-old historic backdrop that measures 22 feet high by 39 feet long? That was the challenge for the staff at the Missouri History Museum when they prepared to take down the Katherine Dunham: Beyond the Dance exhibit that closed its run in March. The backdrop, made of canvas, netting, and appliquéd materials, is from Dunham’s show Rites de Passage and depicts a jungle scene. Prior to MHM receiving the backdrop in 1991, it had been stored, tightly folded, in a wicker basket for many years. Read more »

23, April 2010

Dorothy I. Height, Civil Rights Leader, 1912–2010

Civil rights pioneer Dorothy I. Height died on April 20, 2010, at the age of 98. Height was best known as the president of the National Council of Negro Women for 40 years. For a lifetime of working for the rights of African Americans, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor, in 1994. Read more »

21, April 2010

Sibling Revelry: St. Louis Celebrates 50 Years with Sister City of Stuttgart, Germany

St. Louis is celebrating its oldest sister this year, and the Missouri History Museum has been honored to be part of the festivities. In 1960, St. Louis entered into its first sister city relationship. The 50-year bond between St. Louis and Stuttgart, Germany, is being celebrated this year with a number of events and cultural exchanges.

The biggest event took place this weekend as St. Louisans welcomed Lord Mayor Wolfgang Schuster, mayor of Stuttgart since 1997. Read more »

21, April 2010

Here Art Thou Romeo and Juliet

The curtain recently opened on the New Jewish Theatre’s production of Romeo and Juliet, currently playing in the Lee Auditorium at the Missouri History Museum until May 2, 2010. Robin Weatherall has adapted William Shakespeare’s tale of star-crossed lovers, setting the story in the British Mandate of Palestine in 1947, during the war for Israeli independence. Instead of families feuding in Verona, Italy, Arabs and Jews are warring in Jerusalem, with the British mediating. Read more »

20, April 2010

Of Canaries and Coal Mines

Almost 165 years ago, my great-great-great-grandfather's home was located precisely where the Flight Cage (aviary) in the Saint Louis Zoo is today. Read more »

20, April 2010

Army Life

Army Life: From a Soldier’s Journal—Incidents, Sketches and Record of a Union Soldier’s Army Life, in Camp and Field, 1861–1864, by Albert O. Marshall. Edited and annotated by Robert G. Schultz (Fayetteville: University of Arkansas Press, 2009).

Reviewed by William C. Winter

Albert O. Read more »