The Marshall Plan was an American initiative passed in 1948 to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $12 billion in economic assistance to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II. Replacing the previous Morgenthau Plan, it operated for four years beginning on April 3, 1948; the goals of the United States were to rebuild war-torn regions, remove trade barriers, modernize industry, improve European prosperity, prevent the spread of Communism. The Marshall Plan required a lessening of interstate barriers, a dropping of many regulations, encouraged an increase in productivity, as well as the adoption of modern business procedures; the Marshall Plan aid was divided amongst the participant states on a per capita basis. A larger amount was given to the major industrial powers, as the prevailing opinion was that their resuscitation was essential for general European revival. Somewhat more aid per capita was directed towards the Allied nations, with less for those, part of the Axis or remained neutral.
The largest recipient of Marshall Plan money was the United Kingdom, followed by France and West Germany. Some eighteen European countries received Plan benefits. Although offered participation, the Soviet Union refused Plan benefits, blocked benefits to Eastern Bloc countries, such as Hungary and Poland; the United States provided similar aid programs in Asia, but they were not part of the Marshall Plan. Its role in the rapid recovery has been debated. Most reject the idea that it alone miraculously revived Europe, since the evidence shows that a general recovery was under way; the Marshall Plan's accounting reflects that aid accounted for less than 3% of the combined national income of the recipient countries between 1948 and 1951, which means an increase in GDP growth of only 0.3%. After World War II, in 1947, industrialist Lewis H. Brown wrote at the request of General Lucius D. Clay, A Report on Germany, which served as a detailed recommendation for the reconstruction of post-war Germany, served as a basis for the Marshall Plan.
The initiative was named after United States Secretary of State George Marshall. The plan had bipartisan support in Washington, where the Republicans controlled Congress and the Democrats controlled the White House with Harry S. Truman as President; the Plan was the creation of State Department officials William L. Clayton and George F. Kennan, with help from the Brookings Institution, as requested by Senator Arthur H. Vandenberg, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. Marshall spoke of an urgent need to help the European recovery in his address at Harvard University in June 1947; the purpose of the Marshall Plan was to aid in the economic recovery of nations after WWII and to reduce the influence of Communist parties within them. To combat the effects of the Marshall Plan, the USSR developed its own economic plan, known as the Molotov Plan, in spite of the fact that large amounts of resources from the Eastern Bloc countries to the USSR were paid as reparations, for countries participating in the Axis Power during the war.
The phrase "equivalent of the Marshall Plan" is used to describe a proposed large-scale economic rescue program. The reconstruction plan, developed at a meeting of the participating European states, was drafted on June 5, 1947, it offered the same aid to the Soviet Union and its allies, but they refused to accept it, as doing so would allow a degree of US control over the communist economies. In fact, the Soviet Union prevented its satellite states from accepting. Secretary Marshall became convinced Stalin had no interest in helping restore economic health in Western Europe. President Harry Truman signed the Marshall Plan on April 3, 1948, granting $5 billion in aid to 16 European nations. During the four years the plan was in effect, the United States donated $17 billion in economic and technical assistance to help the recovery of the European countries that joined the Organisation for European Economic Co-operation; the $17 billion was in the context of a US GDP of $258 billion in 1948, on top of $17 billion in American aid to Europe between the end of the war and the start of the Plan, counted separately from the Marshall Plan.
The Marshall Plan was replaced by the Mutual Security Plan at the end of 1951. The ERP addressed each of the obstacles to postwar recovery; the plan did not focus on the destruction caused by the war. Much more important were efforts to modernize European industrial and business practices using high-efficiency American models, reducing artificial trade barriers, instilling a sense of hope and self-reliance. By 1952, as the funding ended, the economy of every participant state had surpassed pre-war levels. Over the next two decades, Western Europe enjoyed unprecedented growth and prosperity, but economists are not sure what proportion was due directly to the ERP, what proportion indirectly, how much would have happened without it. A common American interpretation of the program's role in European recovery was expressed by Paul Hoffman, head of the Economic Cooperation Administration, in 1949, when he told Congress Marshall aid had provided the "critical margin" on which other investment needed for European recovery depended.
The Marshall Plan was one of the first elements of European integration, as it erased trade barriers and set up institutions to co
First inauguration of Harry S. Truman
The first inauguration of Harry S. Truman as the 33rd President of the United States was held at 7:00 pm on Thursday, April 12, 1945, in the Cabinet Room at the White House in Washington, D. C. following the death of President Franklin D. Roosevelt earlier that day; the inauguration marked the commencement of the first term of Harry S. Truman as President. Truman had just adjourned a session of the United States Senate and was on his way to share a drink with Sam Rayburn, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, when he was summoned to the White House. Upon his arrival, he was met by Eleanor Roosevelt, who informed him that President Roosevelt was dead. Shocked, Truman asked Mrs. Roosevelt, "Is there anything I can do for you?", to which she replied: "Is there anything we can do for you? For you are the one in trouble now."Chief Justice of the United States Harlan Fiske Stone administered the presidential oath of office. Among witnesses of this ceremony were Truman's wife Bess Truman, daughter Margaret Truman, Mrs. Roosevelt, Speaker Rayburn, members of the cabinet.
This was the second presidential inauguration in 1945, after the scheduled inauguration for Roosevelt's fourth term earlier on January 20. Presidency of Harry S. Truman Second inauguration of Harry S. Truman Newsreel coverage of Truman's first inauguration from C-SPAN Robert J. Donovan and Crisis; the Presidency of Harry S. Truman, 1945-1948. University of Missouri Press, 1996ISBN 0-8262-1066-X, 9780826210661
President of the United States
The president of the United States is the head of state and head of government of the United States of America. The president directs the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces. In contemporary times, the president is looked upon as one of the world's most powerful political figures as the leader of the only remaining global superpower; the role includes responsibility for the world's most expensive military, which has the second largest nuclear arsenal. The president leads the nation with the largest economy by nominal GDP; the president possesses international hard and soft power. Article II of the Constitution establishes the executive branch of the federal government, it vests the executive power of the United States in the president. The power includes the execution and enforcement of federal law, alongside the responsibility of appointing federal executive, diplomatic and judicial officers, concluding treaties with foreign powers with the advice and consent of the Senate.
The president is further empowered to grant federal pardons and reprieves, to convene and adjourn either or both houses of Congress under extraordinary circumstances. The president directs the foreign and domestic policies of the United States, takes an active role in promoting his policy priorities to members of Congress. In addition, as part of the system of checks and balances, Article I, Section 7 of the Constitution gives the president the power to sign or veto federal legislation; the power of the presidency has grown since its formation, as has the power of the federal government as a whole. Through the Electoral College, registered voters indirectly elect the president and vice president to a four-year term; this is the only federal election in the United States, not decided by popular vote. Nine vice presidents became president by virtue of a president's intra-term resignation. Article II, Section 1, Clause 5 sets three qualifications for holding the presidency: natural-born U. S. citizenship.
The Twenty-second Amendment precludes any person from being elected president to a third term. In all, 44 individuals have served 45 presidencies spanning 57 full four-year terms. Grover Cleveland served two non-consecutive terms, so he is counted twice, as both the 22nd and 24th president. Donald Trump of New York is the current president of the United States, he assumed office on January 20, 2017. In July 1776, during the American Revolutionary War, the Thirteen Colonies, acting jointly through the Second Continental Congress, declared themselves to be 13 independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. Recognizing the necessity of coordinating their efforts against the British, the Continental Congress began the process of drafting a constitution that would bind the states together. There were long debates on a number of issues, including representation and voting, the exact powers to be given the central government. Congress finished work on the Articles of Confederation to establish a perpetual union between the states in November 1777 and sent it to the states for ratification.
Under the Articles, which took effect on March 1, 1781, the Congress of the Confederation was a central political authority without any legislative power. It could make its own resolutions and regulations, but not any laws, could not impose any taxes or enforce local commercial regulations upon its citizens; this institutional design reflected how Americans believed the deposed British system of Crown and Parliament ought to have functioned with respect to the royal dominion: a superintending body for matters that concerned the entire empire. The states were out from under any monarchy and assigned some royal prerogatives to Congress; the members of Congress elected a President of the United States in Congress Assembled to preside over its deliberation as a neutral discussion moderator. Unrelated to and quite dissimilar from the office of President of the United States, it was a ceremonial position without much influence. In 1783, the Treaty of Paris secured independence for each of the former colonies.
With peace at hand, the states each turned toward their own internal affairs. By 1786, Americans found their continental borders besieged and weak and their respective economies in crises as neighboring states agitated trade rivalries with one another, they witnessed their hard currency pouring into foreign markets to pay for imports, their Mediterranean commerce preyed upon by North African pirates, their foreign-financed Revolutionary War debts unpaid and accruing interest. Civil and political unrest loomed. Following the successful resolution of commercial and fishing disputes between Virginia and Maryland at the Mount Vernon Conference in 1785, Virginia called for a trade conference between all the states, set for September 1786 in Annapolis, with an aim toward resolving further-reaching interstate commercial antagonisms; when the convention failed for lack of attendance due to suspicions among most of the other states, Alexander Hamilton led the Annapolis delegates in a call for a convention to offer revisions to the Articles, to be held the next spring in Philadelphia.
Prospects for the next convention appeared bleak until James Madison and Edmund Randolph succeeded in securing George Washington's attendance to Philadelphia as a delegate for Virginia. When the Constitutional Convention convened in May 1787, the 12 state delegations in attendance (Rh
Mary Margaret Truman Daniel known as Margaret Truman or Margaret Daniel, was an American classical soprano, journalist and television personality and New York socialite. The only child of President Harry S Truman and First Lady Bess Truman, she was "a witty, hard-working Midwestern girl with singing talent, neither pretty nor plain."After graduating from George Washington University in 1946, she embarked on a career as a coloratura soprano beginning with a concert appearance with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra in 1947. She appeared in concerts with orchestras throughout the United States and in recitals throughout the U. S. through 1956. While she did perform opera arias in concert, she never appeared in staged operas and focused her career on performing works from the concert soprano and art song repertoires, she made recordings with R. C. A. Victor and made television appearances on programs like What’s My Line? and The Bell Telephone Hour. In 1957 Truman abandoned her singing career to pursue a career as a journalist and radio personality when she became the co-host of the program Weekday with Mike Wallace.
She wrote articles as an independent journalist as well for a variety of publications in the 1960s and 1970s. She became the successful author of a series of murder mysteries and a number of works on U. S. First Ladies and First Families, including biographies of her father, President Harry S. Truman and mother Bess Truman, she was married to managing editor of The New York Times. The couple were prominent New York socialites who hosted events for the New York elite. Mary Margaret was born in Independence, Missouri, on February 17, 1924, was christened Mary Margaret Truman but was called Margaret from early childhood, she attended school in Independence until her father's 1934 election to the United States Senate, after which her education was split between schools in Washington, D. C. and Independence. In 1942, she matriculated at George Washington University, where she was a member of Pi Beta Phi and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in History in 1946. In June 1944, she christened the battleship USS Missouri at Brooklyn Navy Yard, spoke again in 1986 at the ship's recommissioning.
After classical vocal training, Truman's singing career began with a debut radio recital in March 1947 followed shortly thereafter with her professional concert debut with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. She sang professionally for the next decade, appearing with major American orchestras and giving several national concert tours; some of her credits include concert appearances with the Los Angeles Philharmonic at the Hollywood Bowl, the National Symphony Orchestra, the NBC Symphony Orchestra, the Pittsburg Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Saint Louis Symphony among others. While she never performed in staged operas, she did perform opera arias in concert, her performances were of both sacred and secular art songs and works from the concert soprano repertoire. In 1951 she recorded an album of American Art Songs for RCA Victor, she made recordings of German lieder for NBC. A 1951 Time Magazine cover featured Truman with a single musical note floating by her head, she performed on stage and television through 1956.
At the beginning of her career, critical reviews of Truman’s singing were positive or diplomatic in tone, with one reviewer speculating that negative opinions were held back out of deference for her father as a current sitting United States President. This practice was broken in 1950 when Washington Post music critic Paul Hume wrote that Truman was "extremely attractive on the stage... cannot sing well. She is flat a good deal of the time, and still cannot sing with anything approaching professional finish." The review angered President Truman. When that happens you'll need a new nose, a lot of beefsteak for black eyes, a supporter below!" His response was published by The Washington Post and drew international headlines, becoming a minor scandal for the Truman administration. Reviewers after that felt more free to be honest in their reviews of her performances, with mixed criticism for her singing thereafter. Truman's professional acting debut occurred April 26, 1951, she co-starred with James Stewart in the "Jackpot" episode of Screen Directors Playhouse on NBC radio.
On March 17, 1952, Truman was guest soloist on The Railroad Hour in a presentation of Sari. Truman performed on the NBC Radio program The Big Show. There she met writer Goodman Ace, she became part of the team of NBC Radio's Weekday show that premiered in 1955, shortly after its Monitor program made its debut. Paired with Mike Wallace, she presented news and interviews aimed at a female listening audience, she appeared several times as a panelist on the game show What's My Line? and guest-starred more than once on NBC's The Martha Raye Show. In 1957, she sang and played piano on The Gisele MacKenzie Show Truman's full-length biography of her father, published shortly before his death, was critically acclaimed, she wrote a personal biography of her mother and histories of the White House and its inhabitants. A series of murder mysteries, the Capital Crimes series, set in and around Washington, D. C. were published under her name. After Harrington's apparent suicide, a self-written obituary was found in which he re
The White House is the official residence and workplace of the President of the United States. It is located at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW in Washington, D. C. and has been the residence of every U. S. President since John Adams in 1800; the term "White House" is used as a metonym for the president and his advisers. The residence was designed by Irish-born architect James Hoban in the neoclassical style. Hoban modelled the building on Leinster House in Dublin, a building which today houses the Oireachtas, the Irish legislature. Construction took place between 1800 using Aquia Creek sandstone painted white; when Thomas Jefferson moved into the house in 1801, he added low colonnades on each wing that concealed stables and storage. In 1814, during the War of 1812, the mansion was set ablaze by the British Army in the Burning of Washington, destroying the interior and charring much of the exterior. Reconstruction began immediately, President James Monroe moved into the reconstructed Executive Residence in October 1817.
Exterior construction continued with the addition of the semi-circular South portico in 1824 and the North portico in 1829. Because of crowding within the executive mansion itself, President Theodore Roosevelt had all work offices relocated to the newly constructed West Wing in 1901. Eight years in 1909, President William Howard Taft expanded the West Wing and created the first Oval Office, moved as the section was expanded. In the main mansion, the third-floor attic was converted to living quarters in 1927 by augmenting the existing hip roof with long shed dormers. A newly constructed East Wing was used as a reception area for social events. East Wing alterations were completed in 1946. By 1948, the residence's load-bearing exterior walls and internal wood beams were found to be close to failure. Under Harry S. Truman, the interior rooms were dismantled and a new internal load-bearing steel frame constructed inside the walls. Once this work was completed, the interior rooms were rebuilt; the modern-day White House complex includes the Executive Residence, West Wing, East Wing, the Eisenhower Executive Office Building—the former State Department, which now houses offices for the President's staff and the Vice President—and Blair House, a guest residence.
The Executive Residence is made up of six stories—the Ground Floor, State Floor, Second Floor, Third Floor, as well as a two-story basement. The property is a National Heritage Site owned by the National Park Service and is part of the President's Park. In 2007, it was ranked second on the American Institute of Architects list of "America's Favorite Architecture". Following his April 1789 inauguration, President George Washington occupied two executive mansions in New York City: the Samuel Osgood House at 3 Cherry Street, the Alexander Macomb House at 39–41 Broadway. In May 1790, New York began construction of Government House for his official residence, but he never occupied it; the national capital moved to Philadelphia in December 1790. The July 1790 Residence Act named Philadelphia, Pennsylvania the temporary national capital for a 10-year period while the Federal City was under construction; the City of Philadelphia rented Robert Morris's city house at 190 High Street for Washington's presidential residence.
The first U. S. President occupied the Market Street mansion from November 1790 to March 1797 and altered it in ways that may have influenced the design of the White House; as part of a futile effort to have Philadelphia named the permanent national capital, Pennsylvania built a much grander presidential mansion several blocks away, but Washington declined to occupy it. President John Adams occupied the Market Street mansion from March 1797 to May 1800. On Saturday, November 1, 1800, he became the first president to occupy the White House; the President's House in Philadelphia became a hotel and was demolished in 1832, while the unused presidential mansion became home to the University of Pennsylvania. The President's House was a major feature of Pierre Charles L'Enfant's' plan for the newly established federal city, Washington, D. C.. The architect of the White House was chosen in a design competition which received nine proposals, including one submitted anonymously by Thomas Jefferson. President Washington visited Charleston, South Carolina in May 1791 on his "Southern Tour", saw the under-construction Charleston County Courthouse designed by Irish architect James Hoban.
He is reputed to have met with Hoban then. The following year, he summoned the architect to Philadelphia and met with him in June 1792. On July 16, 1792, the President met with the commissioners of the federal city to make his judgment in the architectural competition, his review is recorded as being brief, he selected Hoban's submission. The building has classical inspiration sources, that could be found directly or indirectly in the Roman architect Vitruvius or in Andrea Palladio styles; the building Hoban designed is verifiably influenced by the upper floors of Leinster House, in Dublin, which became the seat of the Oireachtas. Several other Georgian-era Irish country houses have been suggested as sources of inspiration for the overall floor plan, details like the bow-fronted south front, interior details like the former niches in the present Blue Room; these influences, though undocumented, are cited in the official White House guide, in White
The Conestoga wagon is a heavy covered wagon, used extensively during the late eighteenth century, the nineteenth century, in the eastern United States and Canada. It was large enough to transport loads up to 6 tons, was drawn by horses, mules, or oxen, it was designed to help keep its contents from moving about when in motion and to aid it in crossing rivers and streams, though it sometimes leaked unless caulked. The term Conestoga wagon refers to this type of vehicle; the wagons used in the westward expansion of the United States were, for the most part, ordinary farm wagons fitted with canvas covers. A true Conestoga wagon was too heavy for use on the prairies; the first known, specific mention of "Conestoga wagon" was by James Logan on December 31, 1717 in his accounting log after purchasing it from James Hendricks. It was named after the Conestoga River or Conestoga Township in Lancaster County, is thought to have been introduced by German settlers. In colonial times the Conestoga wagon was popular for migration southward through the Great Appalachian Valley along the Great Wagon Road.
After the American Revolution it was used to open up commerce to Ohio. In 1820 rates charged were one dollar per 100 pounds per 100 miles, with speeds about 15 mi per day; the Conestoga in long wagon trains, was the primary overland cargo vehicle over the Appalachian Mountains until the development of the railroad. The wagon was pulled by a team of up to eight horses or a dozen oxen. In Canada, the Conestoga wagons were used by Pennsylvania German migrants who left the United States for Southern Ontario, settling various communities in Niagara Region, Kitchener-Waterloo area and York Region; the Conestoga wagon was built with its floor curved upward to prevent the contents from tipping and shifting. Including its tongue, the average Conestoga wagon was 18 feet long, 11 feet high, 4 feet in width, it could carry up to 12,000 pounds of cargo. The seams in the body of the wagon were caulked with tar to protect them from leaking while crossing rivers. For protection against bad weather, stretched across the wagon was a tough white canvas cover.
The frame and suspension were made of wood, the wheels were iron rimmed for greater durability. Water barrels were built on the side of the wagon, toolboxes held tools needed for repair, a feed box on the back of the wagon was used to feed the horses; the early freight wagon was not intended to be ridden upon. The wagon had a brake handle on the left side between the two wheels and a teamster either walked beside the wagon or could ride standing on a pull-out board, called a lazy board, that provided access to the brake handle; the left horse near the wagon was sometimes ridden. The Conestoga wagon began the custom of "driving" on the right-hand side of the road. For pulling the heavy freight wagons the Conestoga horse, a special breed of medium to heavy draft horses was developed; the Conestoga was never an established breed, they could be of several different colors. The beginnings were from the same Conestoga Valley as the wagon being Lancaster County; the horses were not bred by necessity. Samuel Gist, a prominent landowner, slave owner, banker, as well as a partner with George Washington, contributed to the eventual breeding of what became known as the Conestoga.
Gist became famous by founding the Gist settlements, including one southwest of Leesburg and freeing his slaves through his will after dying. The lineage of the Conestoga is not clear and there is more than one possibility. In 1774 there were 30 mares imported into Virginia; these either came from the Darley Arabian, or the Godolphin Arabian. Gist imported a Darley Arabian stud named Bulle Rock from England in 1732. Breeding this horse and descendants with Virginia mares led to larger size horses; these mares, bred with studs of Flemish ancestry, were brought to the United States by William Penn, but this has been asserted as lore. The demise of the Conestoga was predicted in 1864, relegated to oblivion by "modern inventions and recent innovations", through a Congressional printing and historical contribution by John Strohm. A few miles south of Conestoga, in Martic, Pennsylvania, a John Eshelman owned a sleek solid black Conestoga pictured as plate XXIV in the publication. "Conestoga Wagon Time-Lapse".
National Museum of American History. YouTube
Lexington is a city in Lafayette County, United States. The population was 4,726 at the 2010 census, it is the county seat of Lafayette County. Located in western Missouri, Lexington lies 40 miles east of Kansas City and is part of the Greater Kansas City Metropolitan Area, it is the home of the Battle of Lexington State Historic Site, of the former Wentworth Military Academy and College, the second-oldest military school west of the Mississippi River, opened in 1880. Lexington is located at 39°10′59″N 93°52′30″W. 342343456489705439. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 5.38 square miles, of which 5.15 square miles is land and 0.23 square miles is water. As of the census of 2010, there were 4,726 people, 1,867 households, 1,201 families residing in the city; the population density was 917.7 inhabitants per square mile. There were 2,127 housing units at an average density of 413.0 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 87.3% White, 6.1% African American, 0.5% Native American, 0.9% Asian, 0.7% Pacific Islander, 1.2% from other races, 3.4% from two or more races.
Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.7% of the population. There were 1,867 households of which 32.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.5% were married couples living together, 13.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 5.5% had a male householder with no wife present, 35.7% were non-families. 31.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 13.5% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.38 and the average family size was 2.94. The median age in the city was 39.6 years. 23.8% of residents were under the age of 18. The gender makeup of the city was 48.9% male and 51.1% female. As of the census of 2000, there were 4,453 people, 1,815 households, 1,210 families residing in the city; the population density was 1,279.7 people per square mile. There were 2,015 housing units at an average density of 579.1 per square mile. The racial makeup of the city was 91.02% White, 6.04% African American, 0.18% Native American, 0.49% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 1.06% from other races, 1.17% from two or more races.
Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.18% of the population. There were 1,815 households out of which 31.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 13.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 33.3% were non-families. 30.0% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.0% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.90. In the city, the population was spread out with 25.2% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 26.0% from 25 to 44, 22.7% from 45 to 64, 18.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 89.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 85.7 males. The median income for a household in the city was $32,759, the median income for a family was $39,583. Males had a median income of $31,672 versus $21,646 for females; the per capita income for the city was $17,879. About 12.8% of families and 14.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.1% of those under age 18 and 11.5% of those age 65 or over.
Lexington, located on the bluffs of the Missouri River, was platted in 1822, near William Jack's Ferry, established three years earlier on the south bank of the river. It was named in commemoration of the Battle of Lexington; the first ferry was established in 1819 by Gilead Rupe. In 1823, Lexington grew rapidly. John Aull opened a mercantile store in 1822, he was soon joined by his brothers James and Robert; the Aull Brothers firm soon had a frontier chain operating stores in Independence and Liberty. Other merchants came, as did farmers and planters who specialized in hemp and cattle. With the emphasis on trade and agriculture and Lafayette County had one of the largest slave populations in the state. Many homes in town still have the old slave quarters behind them. Lexington was a bustling and prosperous city, the largest city west of St. Louis in the 1830s and 1840s. During that period, it was the major center for merchants and outfitters as trappers and emigrants prepared to travel westward on the Santa Fe Trail, California Trail, Oregon Trail, the Mormon Trail to Utah.
Goods sent west from Lexington were valued at $450,000 in 1843. Rope walks, slaughter houses, a foundry and a furniture factory were among other early Lexington industries. In the 1840s, Russell and Waddell, the largest trading firm in the West, established its headquarters on Main Street. In the 1850s, these three men had 3500 wagons carrying goods from Missouri to Sacramento and other points, in 1860, they would found the Pony Express; the steamboat trade on the river became a hugely profitable investment, the wharf was a center of commerce. In 1852, one of the worst steamboat accidents in Missouri history occurred at Lexington; the side-wheeler Saluda was carrying 250 Mormons en route to Salt Lake City when its boilers exploded, killing over 150 people. Many children orphaned by the blast were adopted by Lexingtonians. Productive coal mines, among the first in the state, were dug into the surrounding river bluffs to provide fuel for river steamers. Lexington was noted for its architecture in its public buildi