Missouri and Ozarks History

Information and comments about historical people and events of Missouri, the Ozarks region, and surrounding area.

My Photo
Location: Missouri

I'm a freelance writer specializing in the history of the Ozarks and surrounding region. I've written sixteen nonfiction books, two historical novels, and numerous articles. My latest books are Wicked Women of Missouri, Yanked Into Eternity: Lynchings and Hangings in Missouri, and Show-Me Atrocities: Infamous Incidents in Missouri History.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Boise City

Over the years, Arkansas's Prohibition laws have given rise to communities or settlements just across the border in Missouri that were established for the sole purpose of circumventing those laws (i.e. giving Arkansas residents a relatively close place where they could legally buy alcohol). I assume the community of Ridgedale on U.S. Highway 65 south of Branson just on the Missouri side of the state line was such a place. I don't know the actual history of the place, but I do know that for many years, about the only businesses located there were liquor stores or later convenience stores that sold liquor. Also, I think there used to be a sign on the southbound side of Highway 65 telling motorists, as they approached the Arkansas border, that Ridgedale was their last opportunity to purchase beer, etc. This, of course, was because Boone County, Arkansas, was a dry county, and it still is at least partially dry, I believe.
Another place that was established in response to Arkansas's restrictive liquor laws was Boise City, a community that sprang up in southern Oregon County, Missouri, just across the state line from Mammoth Spring, Arkansas in the mid-1880s during the building of a railroad to the booming mineral-water town. Boise City, or Spring City as it was called at first, was reportedly established by a local man who simply moved across the state line and started a saloon. Soon the place sported several drinking establishments, and the place was a lively little community for at least a short while (at least until the railroad was completed and the workers constructing it went home). Exactly how long the boom lasted I'm not sure, but I do know that by the 1930s or so, Boise City had ceased to exist as a separate town and was considered an addition to Mammoth Spring. Perhaps the larger town annexed the smaller one as way of controlling the flow of liquor, but exactly when that annexation took place is unknown.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home

hit counter
web hosting providers