January 26, 1945

An era ended on this date when “Boss” Tom Pendergast died. With his Kansas City Democrat machine he controlled Missouri politics for years. Six years before his death he was convicted of income tax evasion. Tom Pendergast was so powerful that the state capital building in Jefferson City was known as “Uncle Tomís Cabin.”

This post was contributed by Ross Malone. A historian and a retired school teacher, Ross has authored many books about Missouri’s history, weird facts, and folk tales. He has also written children’s historical fiction. Visit his website, and buy his books in the Missouri Life store.