Zoë Akins portrait

Zoë Byrd Akins was born on October 30, 1886, in Humansville, Missouri, the second of three children of Thomas…

The Ben Bolt Theatre. [Courtesy of Danny Knouse]

The Ben Bolt Theatre was a spectacular building that stood for half a century as a notable…

Kenneth Brown Billups Sr. [National Association of Negro Musicians]

Kenneth Brown Billups Sr. was born in St. Louis, Missouri, on April 14, 1918, the son of…

Kate Chopin portrait

Kate Chopin began and ended her life in St. Louis, with an interlude as a young wife and mother in New…

W. C. Handy playing at the fifth annual American Negro Music Festival in St. Louis’s Sportsman’s Park in 1944. [State Historical Society of Missouri, Arthur Witman 120mm Photograph Collection (S0732), 732.31462]

Although William Christopher Handy spent relatively little of his long life in Missouri,…

Patricia and Fredrick McKissack

Patricia C. McKissack dedicated her career as a writer to showcasing black voices through children’s books and…