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Wentzville City

Wentzville City Hall is located at 310 Pearce Boulevard, Wentzville, MO 63386; phone: 636-327-5101.

Beginnings [1]

Wentzville, Missouri is located in the northwestern part of St. Charles County, 32 miles west of St. Charles, the county seat, and 42 miles west of St. Louis. William M. Allen, a local farmer, merchant and extensive landholder in the area founded the town in 1855, the same year the North-Missouri Railroad connected Wentzville to markets in St. Charles and St. Louis. Allen's donation of land and money was instrumental in building the North-Missouri Railroad through Wentzville; he built the first depot and accepted the appointment of station agent. As a result of the railroad, the town began to prosper with the establishment of a hotel, restaurant, banks and stores, built principally to serve the railroad.

During the mid-19th century the cultivation of tobacco emerged as an important agricultural pursuit in Missouri, placing the state third in national production by 1873. Nearly every county in the state produced some leaf, while certain counties developed as major growers. A strip of land on the western side of St. Charles County stretching from the Missouri River on the south to Eagle Fork (now Big Creek), a branch of the Cuivre River, on the north, was one of Missouri's banner tobacco-growing regions. Included in this land was the Wentzville area where almost every farmer had a tobacco barn and many of the St. Louis tobacco manufacturing giants got their start, including. George S. Myers, co-founder of Liggett & Myers Tobacco Co.; Paul Brown, of Brown Tobacco Co.; James T. Drummond of Drummond Tobacco Co.; and Caleb Dula, President of Liggett & Myers Tobacco Co. after the court degree of 1911.

In addition to growing tobacco, Wentzville area residents also began manufacturing at an early date; in 1865 it was reported that three tobacco factories (all demolished) were in operation there. Moreover, the tobacco district of St. Charles County, along with Pike County, is credited with having been the cradle of invention of plug chewing tobacco, which was the most widely-used form of tobacco in America until the World War I era.

  1. Barb Eisenbath Mittelbuscher, Wentzville Community Historical Society, Wentzville Tobacco Company Factory, St. Charles County, MO, nomination document, 1990, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.
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