December 9, 1897

The Lebanon Rustic Republican reported that President William McKinley had received a barrel of big red apples from Absalom Nelson of Lebanon. The editor said, “Mr. McKinley will realize at once that nothing will make life worth living so much as a big red apple from Missouri.” Nelson’s apple orchard was the largest in the world with 138,000 trees on 2,300 acres.

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.

Photo by Julia Kicova on Unsplash