In May lawmakers selected the State Historical Society of Missouri to lead the plans for the bicentennial celebration of Missouri’s statehood. Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh Jr. of Cape Girardeau, SHSMO president, said SHSMO takes the responsibility seriously, and although the celebration is eight years away, a committee has already started meeting to plan for the festivities.
“As the premier center for Missouri studies, we are a natural fit to help plan this event 200 years in the making,” Limbaugh said. “We look forward to taking on this exciting project at the behest of the legislature and will devote the necessary resources to ensure there will be a grand celebration of Missouri’s rich history and heritage.”
According to Brent Schondelmeyer of Independence, a SHSMO vice president and chair of the bicentennial planning committee, the goal is to celebrate this milestone by telling the stories of the people of Missouri in informative, engaging ways that are accessible to all ages and interest groups.
“SHSMO exists to help Missourians explore their place in history, and this is not one person’s story,” Schondelmeyer said. “This is an important opportunity to celebrate Missouri’s vibrant past while looking ahead to the next hundred years.”
Collecting Missourians’ stories has been a big part of SHSMO’s mission since 1898, and the organization is eager to collaborate with individuals and other groups to ensure the spirit of the resolution is carried out in “a statewide effort to promote and celebrate the State of Missouri’s rich and complex history.”
“The celebration can include a wide range of activities focusing on Missouri’s rich history, its culture, and its future,” Schondelmeyer said. “We will propose a plan to take advantage of new ideas and technology to share our stories. A lot has changed since our centennial was observed in 1921.”