Hamilton, MO

Town in Caldwell County, MO

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Sponsors of Hamilton, MO

Since the founding of our communities, organizations, businesses and citizens have stepped forward to build and serve their community. Click on any of the logos below to learn about those who made this website possible! If you would like to learn about becoming a sponsor CLICK HERE!

About Hamilton, MO

Hamilton, Missouri owes its existence largely to the Hannibal & St. Joseph Railroad. Prior to 1854 the area around Hamilton was unsettled prairie land belonging to the U.S. Government. With the coming of the railroad, the Hamilton Town Company was formed to develop a tract of land along the rails.

At first the name Prairie City was intended for the new community. However Albert Gallatin Davis, a key member of the Town Company, chose Hamilton instead, in honor two early Americans, Founding Father and first Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, as well as Joseph Hamilton, a notable early American lawyer and military leader killed at the Battle of the Thames during the War of 1812.

The first house in Hamilton, fittingly, was built by Mr. Davis in the summer of 1855 as well as the first business, a general store, in 1857. The store would serve as Hamilton’s first Post Office and Davis the first Postmaster in 1858. The Hannibal & St. Joseph was finally completed on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1859 and it proved a sweet day indeed for Hamilton as the first train arrived that day as well. A railroad depot was constructed by Fall, 1859 with Albert Gallatin Davis appointed the first railroad and express agent.

By the outbreak of the American Civil War, Hamilton consisted of about 25 homes and businesses. The town saw little involvement in the war, despite northwest and north central Missouri being a hotbed of guerrilla warfare. The majority of the town’s residents held strong pro-Union sympathies, with the few pro-Confederates among the populace forced to take an oath of allegiance. Being on the rail line made Hamilton a tempting target for Confederate “bushwhackers”, so beginning in Fall, 1861 a company of the 50th Illinois Infantry arrived to help the local Home Guard unit defend the town.

Once the war ended Hamilton experienced a period of rapid growth and was finally incorporated in 1868. At that time several new sections of land had been annexed into the original town plat and the population grew to several hundred. After a brief slowdown caused by the Panic of 1873 growth resumed and by the mid-1880s Hamilton featured two newspapers—the Hamiltonian and the News-Graphic—as well as two banks, two hotels, flour mills, grain elevators, and numerous other businesses supported by a population of around 1,800. Coal mining became of some importance to the towns economy in the early 1880s. The Hamilton Coal Company was organized in spring, 1882 and began mining operations the following year about two miles outside of the town. A railroad spur line was constructed to connect the coal field to the Hannibal & St. Joseph main line.

A Quilter’s Destination

Missouri Star Quilt Company has recently made Hamilton a tourist destination for quilters. The company, founded by the Doan family, has helped to transform the small town into a veritable quilter’s paradise, with 12 new quilt shops, a sewing center for quilting retreats, new restaurants and a bakery. In seven short years, Missouri Star has become the largest employer in Caldwell County, with over 200 employees. Because of this, they won both the Missouri Small Business of the Year award and the National Small Business of the Year in 2015.

Businesses of Hamilton, MO

The businesses of our towns are truly the lifeblood of each community, click on any businesses below to learn about them, to learn how to add your business to your town and county page CLICK HERE!

Caldwell County, MO

Visit our county page and you will find information about our town and county's points of interest, festivals/events and faith community. You also will learn about the community organizations that have built and continue to build strong communities (chambers, community groups, and departments, etc) and much more when you visit the Caldwell County, MO page.