Dexter and the surrounding area are rich in history from the early 1800’s to the present. There are two museums in Dexter with six or seven more in surrounding areas.
If you are searching for your ancestors who lived in one of the 60 plus towns which once dotted Stoddard County, or went to one of the old country schools, or who were buried in one of the old cemetery’s from the mid 1800’s, assistance is available.
From the 1850’s till the 1960’s, the Evans family created the world famous Evans Pottery and eventually the Dessert Sands Pottery from clay native to this area.
Prior to the Civil War the pro-Confederate State Militia, First Division, Missouri State Guard later known as the “Swamp Fox Brigade” was formed just south of Dexter. Although the county stayed neutral, a lot of war activity took place in this area. A Confederate Cemetery, with markers of 150 soldiers indicating who they were and how they died is located north of Dexter near Bloomfield.
Just north of Dexter lies the county seat, Bloomfield, home of the first Stars & Stripes newspaper published by Union Soldiers in 1861. Between Dexter and Bloomfield is the Stars & Stripes Museum/Library, which houses information and artifacts from the Civil War to present including the original first issue of The Stars & Stripes newspaper.
Totaling over 35 thousand acres, the area is home to seven State Wildlife Conservation areas. All are open to the public for hunting, fishing, wildlife viewing, hiking, camping, or just getting away from it all.