US Postage Stamps // Philatelic Project // The Federal States


Missouri // Jefferson City, MO // Southern Region // Central Time
(The Show Me State)
Territory established: June 4, 1812
Statehood granted: August 10, 1821 // 24thstate
Lousiana was formed out of land from the Louisiana Purchase.
[View maps of Louisiana Purchase]
Provisional CSA accsession on August 19, 1861,
but Missouri was never under effective control of the Confederacy.

#4301 // August 6, 2009
(self-adhesive coil definitive)
Flags of Our Nation Series
Missouri State Flag
and steer wheel steamboat
#1977 // April 14, 1982
(ex pane of 50 different stamps)
State Bird & Flower of
Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis)
and Red Hawthorn
#1656 // February 23, 1976
(ex pane of 50 different stamps)
American Bicentennial Series
Missouri State Flag

#994 // June 3, 1950 // Kansas City, MO
Missouri Statehood

Rustic scene of 1850 Westport as well as
the modern 1950s skyline of Kansas City

#1426 // May 8, 1971 // Independence, MO
Missouri Statehood

Pawnee Indian with a peace pipe
and fearful Anglo-American pioneers
The stamp depicts an image detail from the mural "Independence and the Opening of the West"
painted June 1958/April 1961 by Missouri-born artist Thomas Hart Benton (* 1889, † 1975).

The mural adorns the main lobby of the Harry S. Truman Museum and Library, Independence, MO.
The museum and library is named after the Missouri-born 33rd US President
Harry S. Truman (* 1884, † 1972, in office 1945-1953).
[View more details and an analysis of the mural]


Mark Twain
[Samuel Langhorne Clemens]

Samuel Langhorne Clemens (* 1835, † 1910) , pen name Mark Twain, was an American fiction writer, illustrator, and widely considered America's greatest humorist. He was born in Florida, MO, but his family soon settled in the town of Hannibal, MO, located on the west bank of the mighty Mississippi River. In that town Clemens developed a love for the river that would stay with him his entire life. As a young man, he met a steamboat pilot named Horace Bixby, who had significant influence on Clemens' decision to learn the craft, becoming one of the best pilots on the Mississippi River.
During the American Civil War (1861-1865), when most business travel stopped along the Mississippi River during these years, Clemens began his writing career in 1863, choosing a riverboat pilot term as his pen name. The phrase "mark twain" meant the depth of the water had been measured and it is deep enough ["two fathoms"] for a safe navigation.
Mark Twain recorded the experiences of his youth in the two world-renowned novels "Adventures of Tom Sawyer" (published in 1876) and its sequel, "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" (published in 1885), the latter often called "The Great American Novel".
"Life on the Mississippi" (published in 1883) is a memoir of his days as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi River before the American Civil War, and also a travel book, recounting his trip along the Mississippi River downstream from St. Louis, MO, to New Orleans, LA, many years after the war.
In 2010, the first volume of Twain's autobiography was published. It was his wish that it not be released until 100 years after his death so that he might speak his "whole frank mind". The volume offers a glimpse into the real Samuel Clemens - a man with strong political and social views who nevertheless entertained millions of people with riveting tales of life on the Mississippi River.

#863 // February 13, 1940 // Hannibal, MO
Famous American Issues
American Authors

Portrait of Samuel L. Clemens,
pen name "Mark Twain"

#4545 // April 4, 2002 // Hannibal, MO
Literary Arts Series
Mark Twain

Portrait in oil paints,
and Mississippi steamboat

#1470 // October 13, 1972 // Hannibal, MO
American Folklore Series
Tom Sawyer

Character in the novel
"Adventures of Tom Sawyer"
written by Mark Twain, published in 1876

The stamp image depicts the painting
"Whitewashing the Fence", 1936
by Norman Rockwell (* 1894, † 1978),
American painter and illustrator
of everyday American culture
#2787 // October 23, 1993 // Louisville, KY
(ex se-tenant block/strip of 4 different stamps)
Children's Classic Books Issue
Huckleberry Finn

Character in the novel
"Adventures of Huckleberry Finn"
written by Mark Twain, published in 1885
as a sequel to Tom Sawyer's adventures


Missouri River

#3093 // August 22, 1996 // Orlando, FL
(ex s/a vertical strip of 5 from pane of 20 stamps)
Riverboat Issues
Missouri River

"Far West"
Missouri River sternwheeler steamboat
launched 1870, sank in 1883 after hitting
a snag seven miles from St. Charles, MO
The "Far West" carried the fifty-two wounded survivors of "Custer's Last Stand" at Little Bighorn, MT to St. Louis, MO. On June 25/26, 1876, combined Native American Indian forces of the Lakota, Northern Cheyenne and Arapaho tribes led by Sitting Bull (* c. 1831, † 1890 shot by Indian Police) and Crazy Horse, (* c. 1840, † 1877 by bayonet wound) severely defeated the 7th US Cavalry Regiment commanded by Lieutenant Colonel George Amstrong Custer (* 1839, † 1876 at Little Bighorn) in a bloody battle near southern Montana's Little Bighorn River.

The Jefferson River, primary headstream of the Missouri River, originates (Hell Roaring Creek Red Rock Beaverhead Big Hole Jefferson) near Brower's Spring at 9,100 ft [2.774 m] above sea level, in Montana's Centennial Mountains. The second and third headwaters of the Missouri River are rising in Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park. The Madison River originates (Firehole Gibbon Madison) at Madison Lake, at 8,215 ft [2.504 m] above sea level, and the Gallatin River rises out of Gallatin Lake. Both rivers then flow to the north and northwest into Montana.
The Missouri River officially starts in Missouri Headwaters State Park, where its headwaters the Jefferson, Madison, and Gallatin Rivers converge near Three Forks, Gallatine County, MT, at 4,045 ft [1.233 m] above sea level. From there the stream flows northward to the Great Falls and then eastward, southward, and again to the east for 2,341 miles [3.768 km] through Montana, North Dakota, and South Dakota, forms part of the boundaries of Nebraska, Kansas, and Iowa, before crossing Missouri and entering the Mississippi River at the village area of Spanish Lake CDP, c. 17 miles [27,4 km] north of St. Louis, MO.
With a total length of c. 2,565 miles [4.130 km], including its Jefferson-Beaverhead-Red Rock headstream, the Missouri River is the longest stream in North America, the principal tributary of the Mississippi River, and a major waterway of the Central United States, navigable from Sioux City, IA, 760 miles [1.223 km] downstream.
The Missouri River is named after the Missouri Indian tribe, meaning "people with wooden canoes". Nicknames of the river are Big Muddy, Mighty MO.
confluence and/or renaming of river(s)

#3585 // April 4, 2002
(ex pane of 50 stamps, one for each state)
Greetings from Missouri

Illustration of contemporary postcard
in the style of the 1930s/1940s

View Missouri state quarter
View Missouri state map
View Missouri clock

The name of the state and the river originates from the state's Sioux Indians
called "Missouris", which means "people with wooden canoes".
Land Area
rounded mi2 [km2]
68,886 [178.414]
ranked 18th
(census 2010)
ranked 18th
Population Density
per mi2 [km2] of land area
87 [34]
ranked 29th
The State of Missouri has 114 counties and one independent city, St. Louis.
Historic Route 66 leads 317 miles (510 km) through Missouri.

The ZIP code turned 50 in 2013

Stamped Cards 

#UX97 // October 14, 1982 // St. Louis, MO
Stamped Postal Card
Historic Preservation Series
Old Post Office and Custom House,
815 Olive Street, St. Louis, MO 63101

Built in 1872/1884 in French Second Empire architectural style.

#UX177 // September 3, 1994 // St. Louis, MO
Stamped Postal Card
Centennial of St. Louis Union Station,
1820 Market St, St Louis, MO 63103

Former passenger train terminal
built in 1892/1894 in Romanesque Revival architectural style
of the Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis,
long-distance train operations abandoned in 1978


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