Jefferson City has a very unique distinction. Back in 1821, the Missouri state legislature appointed a commission, which decided to create the City of Jefferson specifically to serve as the state capital. However, it wasn’t until 1826 the general assembly moved there, as they waited for our capitol building to be constructed. Unfortunately, it was destroyed by a fire just one year later. A second capitol was built and construction was finished in 1840. But, once again it was destroyed by a fire in 1911 after being struck by lightning. The current capitol was built around 1915.
There are several organizations, and programs the city has to help maintain and preserve our history. The Historic City of Jefferson, is one organization striving to preserve our historic resources. Founded in 1983, their goal is to share our history and work together to educate, advocate, and strive to prevent the loss of historical buildings.
One program they started in 2008, called the Golden Hammer Award, has been very successful in restoring our historic structures. The award recognizes those in our community who are restoring their homes and buildings. One property winner from last year is the president’s residence at Lincoln University located at 601 Jackson Street. The home has been well cared for and preserved by Lincoln University for over 100 years!
Another great way we are preserving our history is through Old Town incentives. This program encourages residents to buy properties in the “Old Town District”. The program offers down payment assistance for buyers purchasing a home in Old Town. More incentives include, preferred bank loans, residential tax reimbursement, and the adaptive reuse program.
The City of Jefferson has many, many historic homes and buildings that show our past. It’s important we embrace our history and do everything we can to restore and maintain the real estate in our city.