Missouri’s Utopian Communities at Canton Public Library

January 18, 2023

The story of odd and unusual social communities in nineteenth-century Missouri will be the topic of a presentation at 6 p.m. Tuesday evening, January 31, at the Canton Public Library.

From religious communes to socialist experiments, Missouri was dotted with alternative communities during much of its history. The ideas and personalities who made up these communities provide a rich addition to the history of the state. Although their neighbors sometimes considered these “utopians” odd or eccentric, they were often within the mainstream of progressive social thinking of the time.

The program’s presenter, Dr. Steve Wiegenstein, is a former professor at Culver-Stockton College who has written three historical novels involving a fictional utopian community in southern Missouri. As part of his research on the novels, he researched Midwestern alternative communities and found experimental communities in every corner of the state.

The presentation, “Missouri’s Utopian Communities,” is part of the Missouri Speaker’s Bureau program, sponsored by the Missouri Humanities Council. The talk is free and open to the public.

The library is located at 403 Lewis Street in Canton. It is open Tuesday - Friday 9 AM to 6 PM and Saturdays 10 AM to 2 PM. Visit the library at www.cantonmopubliclibrary.org, on Facebook at Your Canton Library, or call 573-288-5279.