Nodaway County is one of the most interesting counties in Missouri. It is located in the northwestern part of the state and is named after the Nodaway River which flows through it. There are many fascinating facts about the history of this county, and here are seven of them.
1. Pony Express in Maryville
Maryville, the county seat of Nodaway, was one of the stops of the famous Pony Express. The Pony Express, which operated from 1860 to 1861, was a mail delivery service that covered a distance of 1,800 miles from St. Joseph, Missouri, to Sacramento, California. The riders carried the mail in a leather pouch, and the service was renowned for its speed and efficiency.
2. First Missouri Governor Statue
The statue of Lilburn Boggs, the sixth governor of Missouri, was the first to be erected in the state. This statue stands on the campus of Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville. Boggs was a lieutenant governor under Daniel Dunklin, and he became the governor in 1836. He is remembered for signing an order that expelled the Mormons from Missouri.
3. Massacre site of the Grattan massacre
The Grattan massacre was an incident that happened in the eastern part of the county in 1854. The US Army captain, James L. Grattan, was dispatched to apprehend a group of Sioux Indians who had stolen a cow from a visiting Euro-American. Grattan and his team were overpowered and killed by the Sioux, which led to a series of retaliatory attacks and counter-attacks.
4. County Name is a Native American name
The name Nodaway is derived from the language of the Native American tribes who originally inhabited the region. The word means "placid water" or "peaceful valley." The Nodaway River, which gave the county its name, was an important waterway for the Native Americans, early settlers, and traders.
5. Maryville's connection to Ramses II
Several artifacts from Egypt's ancient history are housed at the Horace Mann museum at Northwest Missouri State University. The museum is home to a statue of Ramses II, a pharaoh who reigned from 1279 to 1213 BC. The statue was a gift from the Egyptian government to honor the relationship between Maryville and its sister city, Amarna in Egypt.
6. Nodaway county thrived early on
Nodaway County was established in 1845, and by 1850, it had a population of 3,200 people. By 1860, the population had grown to 14,500, and it continued to increase, reaching over 20,000 by 1900. The county's prosperity was due to its rich farmland, thriving trade and commerce, and the arrival of the railroad in the mid-1800s.
7. Northwest Missouri State University historic campus
The campus of Northwest Missouri State University is one of the most beautiful in the region. The campus features several historic buildings, including the Administration Building, constructed in 1908, and Colden Hall, constructed in 1907. The campus is also home to the Olive DeLuce Fine Arts Building, which houses the famous Rose Theater, a venue for theatrical and musical performances.
In conclusion, there are many interesting facts about Nodaway County in Missouri history, from its connection to the Pony Express to its thriving early years and the tragic Grattan massacre. The county's rich history, which includes Native American tribes, early pioneers, and settlers, has left an indelible mark on this part of Missouri.
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