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Canton City

Canton City Hall is located at 106 North 5th Street, Canton, MO 63435; phone: 573-288-4413.

Beginnings [1]

Established about 1830, Canton is the oldest town in Lewis County. It was named for Canton, Ohio, the previous home of a number of the early settlers. The town extends from the bottomland along the Mississippi River to the bluffs on the west. Here was the home of Jesse W. Barrett (1822-1886), Methodist preacher and educator who established (in 1862) the Canton Press, a Democratic weekly. In 1864 Barrett was made Grand Master of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, and 3 years later he assisted in the organization of the Missouri Press Association, of which he was president from 1867 to 1870.

Culver-Stockton College, chartered in 1853 and launched in 1855, was the first co-educational college west of the Mississippi River. The college's first president was James Shannon who had formerly served as president of the University of Missouri. College facilities were used as a Union Headquarters during the Civil War, and as a training camp during World War I.

  1. Federal Writers Project, Works Progress Administration, Missouri: A Guide to the "Show Me" State, American Guide Series, 1941, Missouri State Highway Department
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