Boone County and the River

Presentation by Matt Fetterly, Boone County Historian

Matt Fetterly explores the relationship between humans living in Boone County and the Missouri River from prehistory to the present time.

Published: February 13, 2024

Presentation by local historian Matt Fetterly

Original presentation took place on February 13th, 2024 in Rocheport, MO

  • Click here to view or download Matt’s presentation as a PDF

Boone County historian Matt Fetterly took us on a journey through the past to get a bird’s eye view of local history, exploring the relationship between humans and the Missouri River from prehistory to the present time. Matt discussed natural history as a foundation to understand local prehistoric indigenous peoples, before moving on to historic interactions between indigenous people with newcomers of European and African decent, and concluding with the settlement of towns such as Stonesport, now long lost to the waters of the Big Muddy.

Matt was born in Columbia, Missouri and is an 8th generation Boone Countian. He is an alumnus of Hickman High School and the University of Missouri. A lifelong love of Columbia inspired him to preserve a growing collection of over 170 books about Columbia and Boone County. Matt specializes in Columbia, Boone County, and Missouri history: particularly natural history, black history, indigenous history, LGBT history, and cultural history more generally (especially architecture, music, art, theater, and cemeteries). When not playing music or writing about local history, he enjoys hiking, caving, camping, and floating, in the forest and prairies of Mid-Missouri.

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The Big Muddy Speaker Series in Rocheport

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Special thanks to Les Bourgeois Vineyards for giving us the opportunity to use their beautiful space overlooking the Missouri River. All speakers are presenting for free! Thank you all for sharing your knowledge with us!

The Big Muddy Speaker Series also takes place in St. Charles.


The views and opinions expressed by our presenters do not necessarily reflect the view or policies of Missouri River Relief, the Big Muddy Speaker Series or any of the partners that support this public forum. The Big Muddy Speaker Series believes that hearing diverse perspectives is a crucial building block for an informed public.


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