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State gets $300,000 to restore 19th century court records

KWMU Photo
During the Civil War, many cases were heard at the Old Courthouse in downtown St. Louis.

By Kevin Lavery, KWMU

St. Louis, MO – The National Endowment for the Humanities grant helps the state continue a seven-year effort to restore 4,000,000 pages worth of St. Louis Circuit Court records.

During the Civil War, Missouri was a border state full of mixed loyalties.

State archivist Ken Winn says after the war, residents once fearful of retribution felt safe enough to reclaim their rights.

"Some of the best views of what's going on in the war are from cases where people feel safe enough to sue five years later," Winn says.

The documents will be available online as they are restored. The entire project is expected to take about three years to complete.


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