Historical Markers in
Franklin County, Missouri

1865 Missouri Pacific Railroad Depot 1891 St. Francis Borgia School Building 1935 St. Francis Borgia School Building Anna Bell Chapel Bank of Washington Bassora Cemetery Beckmann Building Bernard Wiese House Bertelsmann Building Bethel Methodist Church Bleckman Building Bleckman Furniture & Undertaker Church, Rectory, and Jesuit Hall Colter's Escape from the Blackfeet Commercial Hotel Commercial Hotel Addition Dickbrader Hardware Disabled Veterans Memorial Droege's Mercantile Food Store Edward G. Busch Building Francis Becker Building Frank Joerden Building Franklin County Vietnam Memorial From the Mountains to Missouri G. Henry Herweck Building George Phillips George Washington Gerald Depot Gravesite of Washington's Founder Head's Store Henry A. Hartbauer Henry Herkstroeter Building Hero Nation! Hibbeler Building Historic Log House Historic New Haven Honor Roll Honor Roll In Grateful Memory International Shoe Company Building Jesse James Hideout John C. S. Foss Building John Clayton Inn John Schwegmann House Kohmueller House Korean War Memorial Korean War Memorial Lucinda Owens Memorial Marie Krog House Mense Building Miller's Landing Missouri Botanical Garden Arboretum and Nature Reserve Missouri Meerschaum Company Missouri Pacific Passenger Depot Missouri Pacific Railway Station New Haven Newport Notre Dame Hall Pacific Honor Roll Pacific House Pacific Railroad Depot Panhorst Feed Store POW & MIA Memorial Private John Colter Private John Colter Private John Colter Robert Frazer Roettger Inn Russell A. Schmitt VFW Post 3987 Veterans Memorial Saltpeter Cave Schmidt Jewelry Store Schnier Building Schuenemeyer Saloon Schwegmann House Scouting and Hunting on Shore Shawnee Town Ford Southern Presbyterian Church Spc. Jeffrey L. White Jr. St. Francis Borgia Church St. Francis Borgia Convent & School St. Francis Borgia Rectory St. John's A.M.E. Church Tamm Building The Battle of Pacific The Civil War Comes to Washington The Civil War Comes to Washington The Downtown Washington Historic District The Grothaus Building The Iron Horse Arrives The Lewis and Clark Expedition The Lewis and Clark Expedition Across Missouri The Lewis and Clark Expedition Across Missouri The Theatre Verein The Tibbe Historic District The "Welcome to Washington" Mural This Rest Area is maintained through an Extended Employment Sheltered Workshop Thurmon Park Tibbe Power Company Tibbe Power Company Unnerstall Flag Plaza Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Veterans Memorial Benches Veterans Memorial Wall Vietnam Veterans Memorial Vitt's Mill Voss Bazaar War on the Pacific Railroad Washington Washington Bakery Washington Monument Washington's Railroad History Waterworks Building Wir Sind Freunde - We Are Friends Wolf Hotel World War II Veterans Memorial Worlds Fair, St. Louis, Missouri Zachariah Foss House "Boeuf Creek" "The Mighty Missouri"
The first ever drive-thru restaurant in the world was opened in Springfield, Missouri in 1947 by a man named Red Chaney. The restaurant, called Red's Giant Hamburg, was known for its signature "Giant Hamburgers" and became a popular fast food chain in the Midwest.
Franklin County, Missouri boasts a rich and diverse history that spans over two centuries. Settlement in the area began in the late 18th century, with the arrival of French fur trappers and traders. These early pioneers were soon followed by German immigrants, who established farms and brought with them a strong agricultural tradition that continues to this day.

The county was officially created in 1818 and named in honor of Benjamin Franklin, one of America's Founding Fathers. Located along the picturesque banks of the Missouri River, Franklin County quickly became an important transportation hub, with riverboats playing a crucial role in the county's economic development. The arrival of the railroad in the late 19th century further solidified Franklin County's importance as a center of commerce and trade.

Like many areas in Missouri, Franklin County played a significant role in the American Civil War. The Battle of Boeuf River occurred in 1861, a skirmish that resulted in a Union victory and helped solidify control of the region. The county saw its fair share of skirmishes and struggles during the war, leaving a lasting impact on the local community.

In the years following the Civil War, Franklin County experienced rapid growth and development. The county's agricultural economy flourished, with the production of tobacco, livestock, and dairy products playing a pivotal role. The county also saw the emergence of mining as a vital industry, as rich iron deposits were discovered in the region. This led to the establishment of numerous iron and steel foundries, providing employment opportunities and contributing to the county's prosperity.

Today, Franklin County continues to thrive as a vibrant community. It embraces its historic roots, with many preserved buildings and landmarks reflecting its past. While the county has seen modernization and advancements, it remains deeply connected to its agricultural heritage and maintains its welcoming small-town charm.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Franklin County, Missouri.

  • 1818: Franklin County is established as one of the original five counties in the Missouri Territory.
  • 1827: The town of Union is founded as the county seat of Franklin County.
  • 1835: Construction of the first railroad, the Pacific Railroad, begins in Franklin County.
  • 1850: The population of Franklin County reaches over 11,000.
  • 1861-1865: Franklin County residents actively participate in the American Civil War, with some supporting the Union and others supporting the Confederacy.
  • 1875: The Washington Manufacturing Company is established, bringing industrialization to Franklin County.
  • 1930s: The Great Depression causes economic hardship in Franklin County, with many residents struggling to find work.
  • 1950s: Franklin County experiences a period of rapid growth and development, with new infrastructure and industries being established.
  • 1982: The Great Flood of '82 devastates Franklin County, causing widespread damage and loss of life.
  • 2000s: Franklin County becomes a popular tourist destination, known for its scenic beauty and historical sites.