Before We Begin
Prior to 1803, what is now Jackson County, Missouri was mostly the territory of Osage Indians--that is until one fateful day in 1803 when French Fur Trappers on the Missouri River made contact with the Natives. The rest is (recorded) history.
What Is It?
The Jackson County Historical Society is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to preserving the written, oral, and physical legacy of this county. We do this by maintaining physical collections and promoting the study, appreciation, and interpretation of local and regional history.
The History of Celebrating History
Our roots can be traced to 1909 when a group of citizens interested in history first started meeting. In 1940 the group formally organized and in 1958 officially incorporated as The Jackson County Historical Society to celebrate our rich, unique story.
More Than a "Society"
Our physical archives, research library, and bookstore are located in the Truman Courthouse on the Independence Square. The Jackson County Historical Society also maintains the 1859 Jail and Marshal's Home Museum where Frank James was incarcerated.
Who is Involved?
With the cooperation of the Executive Director, The Jackson County Historical Society Board of Directors guides the successful operation of the organization to bring history to life and assist researchers and historians of all sorts for generations to come.
Much of our success is attributed to the dedication of volunteers and members. A significant portion of our funding comes from membership dues, gifts, donations, and grants. With these generous contributions we are able to offer a variety of products, services and programs at the sites and around the county.
JCHS files an annual IRS Form 990 shows its income and expenses. These are reviewed annually by the board of directors. Public inspection copies for three most recent years are below.
More organizational and financial information are available through our GuideStar profile.
The historical society has been led over the years by many talented and committed volunteers. See a list of past JCHS presidents.
JCHS has recognized the achievements of individuals, organizations and institutions that have help preserve, interpret and share the history of Jackson County. See a list of past winners.