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    National Expansion Memorial Missouri

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Donald Dosch Papers

Read the full version of the finding aid. (PDF) Finding Aid by Evette Miller

March 1989, Revised August 1992

This collection was created as Donald F. Dosch, National Park Service Historian, was researching the history of St. Louis' Old Courthouse. In 1969 he wrote a brief history of the building, which would later be enlarged and published as The Old Courthouse in 1979.

In the three chapters of the book Dosch examines first the history of the building itself, that is, the construction and architectural significance of the Old Courthouse. Secondly, he delves into the historical figures and events which are associated with the Old Courthouse. As Dosch stated in the prologue, the Old Courthouse "served as a public forum as well as a temple of justice. The gatherings held here not only dealt with matters of local importance, but also reflected many of the great movements and events in the nation's history." The third and final chapter is devoted to the actual business of the various courts.

In preparation for writing, Dosch took notes on many aspects of the Old Courthouse. These notes from primary and secondary sources make up the first series. Series 2 contains notes about historical buildings and sites in St. Louis. Series 3 and 4 contain the photographs and manuscripts which would eventually be published as The Old Courthouse.

Researchers are advised that before records, photographs, or any other unpublished materials from this collection can be published or exhibited, permission from the National Park Service must be obtained in writing.

If you have questions regarding archives holdings, contact Archivist Jennifer Clark at the JNEM Archives at (voice) 314-655-1600. Appointments are encouraged, if possible.


Did You Know?

Cast iron fence outside the Old Courthouse, part of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial

During the 19th Century St. Louis was the premier ironwork city. After the great fire, many of its buildings were made using iron framework topped off by beautiful iron ornamentation. Jefferson National Expansion Memorial showcases St. Louis architecture in the Old Courthouse. More...