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The Show Me State on Flickr

So The Legal Genealogist is headed out to Missouri today for “Liars, Laws and Brick Walls” — the Annual Conference of the Missouri State Genealogical Association (MoSGA).

It gets underway tomorrow morning with a pre-conference workshop on the Missouri First Families program and then we’re really going to have some fun — talking and learning about those “Liars, Laws and Brick Walls” in our family history.

So you might be wondering why — on a day when I’m headed to Missouri — I’m going to feature a set of images made available, entirely in the public domain — by the British Library.

Yes, that British Library — “the national library of the United Kingdom and one of the world’s greatest libraries. It holds over 13 million books, 920,000 journal and newspaper titles, 57 million patents, 3 million sound recordings, and much, much more.”1

Which, in December 2013, released more than one million images onto its Flickr photostream, entirely free of copyright restrictions of all kinds, available for anyone to use, re-use, change, modify, adapt, republish.

Including “maps, geological diagrams, beautiful illustrations, comical satire, illuminated and decorative letters, colourful illustrations, landscapes, wall-paintings and so much more that even (the librarians themselves) are not aware of.”2

Obviously, these aren’t newly-released images; they’re just new to me, and they’re so much fun I want to make sure that anyone else who missed them can get caught up too.

And among them … these images … of Missouri


“St. Louis University,” from An Illustrated History of Missouri.3


“Bird’s-Eye View of the Kansas City Exposition Grounds,” from The History of Jackson County, Missouri … Illustrated.4


“Kansas City Union Depot,” from The History of Jackson County, Missouri … Illustrated.5

Because you never know where something relevant to your research is going to show up.

It may be in a library half a world away.

Or, if we’re lucky, in that library’s Flickr photostream


  1. Kay Kremerskothen, “Welcome the British Library to The Commons!,” Flickr blog, posted 16 Dec 2013 ( : accessed 5 Aug 2015).
  2. Ben O’Steen, “A million first steps,” British Library Digital scholarship blog, posted 12 Dec 2013 ( : accessed 5 Aug 2013).
  3. Walter Bickford Davis and Daniel Steele Durrie, An Illustrated History of Missouri (St. Louis: A. J. Hall & Co., 1876), 427; digital image, British Library Flickr photostream ( : accessed 5 Aug 2015).
  4. The History of Jackson County, Missouri … Illustrated (Kansas City, Mo. : Birdsall, Williams & Co., 1881), 423; digital image, British Library Flickr photostream ( : accessed 5 Aug 2015).
  5. Ibid., at 410.
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