Review: Joplin (Postcard History)


5-10-2013 7-38-56 PM

Title: Joplin (Postcard History Series)

Author: Leslie Simpson

Genre: History

Publisher: Arcadia Publishing

Publication Date: September 2011

Description: After the discovery of lead along Joplin Creek in southwest Missouri, a rowdy boomtown sprang up overnight. Named after the creek, it paid homage to itinerant minister Harris Joplin, who had settled there briefly in the 1840s. Two rival towns developed: Murphysburg, west of the creek, and Joplin to the east. They merged and incorporated as Joplin in 1873. The town swelled from a mining camp into a thriving city, populated by American and European fortune seekers. Construction of trolley and rail lines furthered the economic growth of Joplin, the zinc and lead capital of the world. The city later gained fame as a stop on historic Route 66. During World War II, Joplin provided an oasis for soldiers in training at Camp Crowder, 20 miles south of town. The post-World War II years ushered in the construction of Interstate 44, suburbanization, and the commercial development of Range Line Road.


This is a short (128 pages) but interesting book that contains a lot of historical information and black and white photos. The last couple of pages contain an epilogue about the Joplin tornado in May of 2011 and it shows pictures of St. John’s Regional Medical Center and Joplin High School after the tornado. Having lived in Joplin for over 30 years, I found the facts interesting and the added information about the tornado makes it up-to-date. 

Available at Sleepygirl’s Used Books.


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