Missouri State Teachers Association Building
Present day site
Date marker located to the left of the entrance
This marker commerates the former location of Columbia college. It reads:
On this site stood Columbia College. An institution of higher education for men first proposed in 1831, chartered by general assembly in 1833. Began its work in 1834. First session of University of Missouri was held here in 1841. This college has been called the seed from which grew the University of Missouri.
This marker was erected by the State Society Daughters of the American Colonists and the John Corbin Chapter. June 28th 1933.
Mrs. Edward Thurman Smith, State Regent
Mrs. BJ Dangerfield Chapter Regent
Article originally published In Columbia Tribune on April 8, 1990
Whatever Happened to the MTSA Building?
By Francis Pike of the Tribune Staff and Midge Crawford of the Boone County Historical Society
The Missouri State Teachers Association, the first state teachers organization in the United States to build its own headquarters structure. It is located at 407 S. Sixth St.
It was on this site that the infant University of Missouri took over a building that housed Columbia College from 1834 until 1843.
Frank Stephen in his History of the University of Missouri writes: "The academic year of 1843 completed the transition period from Columbia College to the University of Missouri. The first term commencing in January was still under the auspices of the college, while the second term, commencing in July, was the initial term under the university. The academic year closed late in November
Actually, the transition took two years to complete, as is shown in the statement on a marker that stands to the right of the walk leading to the MSTA building: "On this site stood Columbia, College, an institution of higher education for men first proposed in 1831. Began its work in 1834. First session of the University of Missouri was held here in 1841. This college has been called the seed from which grew the University of Missouri."institution
The MSTA site was a part of the acreage bought by the Smithton Land Company in 1818 from Franklin government land office. Thirty-five Pioneer Boone Countians bought the land for the purpose of locating the county seat of a new county.
Charles Hardin , father of Gov. Charles H. Hardin, bought the site from the Smithton Company. When he died on April 30, 1832, his widow, Hanna Hardin, and William Jewell, executrix and executor of the Charles Hardin estate, conveyed by deed to Warren Woodson a part of the land containing 5.8 acres to be "held in trust for the use and benefit of an institution of learning to be called and known by the name of Columbia College," and that should the General Assembly "subscribe to an institution of learning," the title to the land would be conveyed to the higher education state trustees.
Woodson, one of the Columbia College trustees, conveyed the land to the college trustees and the college was then chartered at a meeting of fourteen citizens at the Boone County courthouse on Aug. 9 1831. The college's two--story brick building was completed Aug. 29, 1832, and opened for classwork.
on June 10, 1839, the trustees donated the college and its 5.8 acres to the state of Missouri as part of the site for the new state university, "provided its located in Boone County."
the cornerstone of University Building, or Academic Hall as it was more commonly known, was laid on July 4, 1840, "with appropriate ceremonies." Most of the classes were moved from Columbia College building to the new hall in 1841. This was the main building of the university until the fire of 1892, when classes were held temporarily at the Columbia College building.
After Columbia College closed its doors, the building remained in the hands of the university with James Rollins as supervisor of the property. J. Orear lived there a short time, followed by the Rev. Thomas Elston. The university then sold the property on Oct. 2, 1902, to Robert Smith, who then sold it to Robert Babb.
The building was razed on Aug. 30, 1910, and the site was sold to missouri State Teachers Association for their new permanent headquarters structure, which was built inn 1927.
Reproduced with permission from The Columbia Tribune