Portal:Missouri

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Missouri (/mɪˈzʊəri/ (About this sound listen) or /mɪˈzʊərə/) is a U.S. state located in the Midwestern United States, bordered by Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska. With a 2009 estimated population of 5,987,580, Missouri is the 18th most populous state in the nation and the fifth most populous in the Midwest. It comprises 114 counties and one independent city. Missouri's capital is Jefferson City. The four largest urban areas are St. Louis, Kansas City, Springfield, and Columbia. Missouri was originally acquired from France as part of the Louisiana Purchase and became defined as the Missouri Territory. Part of the Missouri Territory was admitted into the union as the 24th state on August 10, 1821.

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Missouri mirrors the demographic, economic and political makeup of the nation with a mix of urban and rural culture. It has long been considered a political bellwether state. With the exceptions of 1956 and 2008, Missouri's results in U.S. presidential elections have accurately predicted the next President of the United States in every election since 1904. It has both Midwestern and Southern cultural influences, reflecting its history as a border state. It is also a transition between the Eastern and Western United States, as St. Louis is often called the "western-most Eastern city" and Kansas City the "eastern-most Western city." Missouri's geography is highly varied. The northern part of the state lies in dissected till plains while the southern part lies in the Ozark Mountains (a dissected plateau), with the Missouri River dividing the two. The confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers is located near St. Louis.

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The history of St. Louis begins with the settlement of the St. Louis area by Native American Mound Builders who lived as part of the Mississippian culture from the 800s to the 1400s, followed by other migrating tribal groups. Starting in the late 1600s, French explorers arrived, and after the French and Indian War, a French trading company led by Pierre Laclède and Auguste Chouteau established the settlement of St. Louis in February 1764. The city grew in population due to its location as a trading post on the Mississippi River, and the city played a small role in the American Revolutionary War. In 1803, the city and the region were transferred to the United States in the Louisiana Purchase.

After the transfer, St. Louis was an entrepôt of trade with the American West. In the late 1840s, it became a destination for German and Irish immigrants; in response, some residents adopted nativist sentiments. The city's proximity to free states caused it to become a center for the filing of freedom suits, such as the Dred Scott case, the outcome of which was among the causes of the American Civil War. During the Civil War, St. Louis had a small skirmish on its outskirts, but the city remained under Union control.

Both its railroad connections and industrial activity increased after the war, and it had a concurrent rise in pollution. During the early 1870s, the Eads Bridge was constructed over the Mississippi River, and the city established several large parks, including Forest Park. Due to local political and economic disputes, the city separated from St. Louis County in 1876 and became an independent city. During the late 19th century, St. Louis became home to two Major League Baseball teams, while both ragtime and blues music flourished in the city. It also hosted the 1904 World's Fair and the 1904 Summer Olympics. After the World's Fair, St. Louis continued to develop commercially, but during the Great Depression, St. Louis suffered from high unemployment. With the advent of World War II, however, the city became home to war industries that employed thousands of workers.

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Wikinews Missouri portal
  • US government to investigate paramilitary policing
  • Wikinews interviews former Matilda's player Sarah Walsh about Australian women's soccer
  • Wikinews interviews American zoologists about pirate perches' chemical camouflage
  • Supreme Court of the United States contemplates same-sex marriage
  • United States re-elects Barack Obama
  • Singer Andy Williams dies at 84
  • Pressure mounts on US Senate candidate Todd Akin to withdraw after controversial rape comments
  • Albert Pujols ends his worst homerun drought
  • St. Louis storm uproots tent; one dead, several injured
  • Deadly tornadoes blast U.S. Midwest leaving 39 dead

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Charles Edward Anderson "Chuck" Berry (born October 18, 1926) is an American guitarist, singer and songwriter, and one of the pioneers of rock and roll music. With songs such as "Maybellene" (1955), "Roll Over Beethoven" (1956), "Rock and Roll Music" (1957) and "Johnny B. Goode" (1958), Chuck Berry refined and developed rhythm and blues into the major elements that made rock and roll distinctive, with lyrics focusing on teen life and consumerism and utilizing guitar solos and showmanship that would be a major influence on subsequent rock music.

Born into a middle class family in St. Louis, Missouri, Berry had an interest in music from an early age and gave his first public performance at Sumner High School. While still a high school student he served a prison sentence for armed robbery between 1944 and 1947. On his release, Berry settled into married life and worked at an automobile assembly plant. By early 1953, influenced by the guitar riffs and showmanship techniques of blues player T-Bone Walker, he was performing in the evenings with the Johnnie Johnson Trio. His break came when he traveled to Chicago in May 1955, and met Muddy Waters, who suggested he contact Leonard Chess of Chess Records. With Chess he recorded "Maybellene"—Berry's adaptation of the country song "Ida Red"—which sold over a million copies, reaching #1 on Billboard's Rhythm and Blues chart. By the end of the 1950s, Berry was an established star with several hit records and film appearances to his name as well as a lucrative touring career. He had also established his own St. Louis-based nightclub, called Berry's Club Bandstand.

Berry was among the first musicians to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on its opening in 1986, with the comment that he "laid the groundwork for not only a rock and roll sound but a rock and roll stance." Berry is included in several Rolling Stone "Greatest of All Time" lists, including being ranked fifth on their 2004 list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll included three of Chuck Berry's songs: "Johnny B. Goode", "Maybellene", and "Rock and Roll Music". Today – at the age of 91 – Berry continues to play live.

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