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Picturing history: Missouri River, Jackson County, Mo.

Published: Wednesday, Sept. 26 2012 5:00 a.m. MDT

For many, the river was a way to get to Jackson County, journeying against the current as they traveled west from St. Louis.

Kenneth Mays

When members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints began arriving in Jackson County, Mo., in 1831, the Missouri River served as its northern boundary. For many, the river was a way to get to Jackson County, journeying against the current as they traveled west from St. Louis.

The Colesville Saints, for example, made their move from Thompson, Ohio, to Independence, Mo., traveling mostly by water on the Ohio, Mississippi and Missouri rivers.

When the group arrived at Independence on July 26, 1831, the Prophet Joseph was there to welcome them at the landing.

When the Saints were driven from Jackson County in late 1833, many went north across the river, a formidable barrier, to Clay County.

Over the years, the course of the river has moved sufficiently that it is now about a half mile from the official boundary of Jackson and Clay counties, while at one time it was the boundary.

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