Mark Twain, one of America's most beloved authors, was born in Florida, Missouri, in 1835. He later moved to Hannibal, Missouri, where he set many of his famous stories, including "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn".
Crawford County, Missouri has a rich history that dates back to prehistoric times. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, particularly the Osage and Delaware tribes. European settlement began in the late 18th century when French trappers and fur traders established trading posts in the region. In 1808, Crawford County was officially formed and named after William H. Crawford, a prominent politician of the time.

During the 19th century, the county experienced significant growth and development. The construction of the Osage River navigation channel in the 1830s provided a boost to the local economy, making it a key transportation hub. The arrival of the railroad in the late 1800s further enhanced accessibility and fuelled economic expansion. The county's geography, with its rolling hills and fertile land, made it an ideal location for agriculture, and farming became a dominant industry in the area.

Crawford County also played a significant role in the American Civil War. Being located on the border of the Confederacy, it was a strategic area of contention. Battle of Pilot Knob in 1864 was a defining moment in the county's history, as Union forces successfully defended the region against Confederate troops. The war brought destruction and turmoil to the county, leaving lasting impacts on the local population.

In the 20th century, Crawford County continued to develop economically and socially. The county became known for its mining industry, particularly lead and zinc mining. This led to the establishment of several mining towns, such as Cuba and Steelville, which thrived until the mid-20th century. Today, Crawford County is known for its natural beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and its rich historical heritage.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Crawford County, Missouri.

  • 1808 - Crawford County is established as a county in Missouri.
  • 1827 - The first permanent settlement is established in the area.
  • 1857 - The county seat is moved from Bourbon to Steelville.
  • 1861-1865 - During the American Civil War, Crawford County is heavily affected by guerrilla warfare.
  • 1880s - The introduction of the railroad leads to increased economic development in the county.
  • 1900 - The population of Crawford County exceeds 20,000.
  • 1930s - The Great Depression impacts the county, leading to economic hardship.
  • 1950 - The county courthouse is destroyed by fire and subsequently rebuilt.
  • 1960s-1970s - The construction of Interstate 44 through the county further enhances transportation and commerce.
  • 2000 - The population of Crawford County reaches over 23,000.