April 21, 1955

The first polio vaccine arrives in Missouri. Like nearly every state in the 1950s, Missouri was facing the viral scourge of polio that for decades had left its victims with crippling deformities, paralyzed, or even dead. The first Missouri shipment of the “miracle cure,” discovered by Dr. Jonas Salk, arrived via Trans World Airlines at Wheeler Airport in Kansas City and via drains in downtown St. Louis.

Based upon content from the book Missouri 365: This Day in Missouri History by John W. Brown, broadcaster and Missouri historian. Get your copy at Reedy Press.

Photo—Tobias Arhelger