This is something I've been thinking about for a while now. There are two different pronunciations of our lovely state: Missour-ee and Missouri-uh. I myself have always pronounced it Missour-ee. Almost every politician I hear pronounces it Missour-uh. If they don't switch back and forth from one to the other.

My maternal grandmother pronounced it Missour-uh*, but my mother pronounced it Missour-ee. Sometimes I've even heard it as more like "Muzz-er-uh".

I'm not sure how it got started, but according to Sarah Wheton:

Scholars believe the name Missouri — however it is pronounced — comes from a word the Illinois Indians used to describe a neighboring tribe: “one who has a canoe.” But historical reasons for the split have been a matter of considerable debate among linguists and historians.

Some believe it started as an east-west split, with St. Louis favoring “ee” and Kansas City “uh.” Popular belief holds that the southern half of the state is “Missourah,” with Highway 70 serving as a sort of Mason-Dixon line, and still others contend that “Missouree” is city, “Missouruh” is country.

So... yeah.  Like everything else in Sedalia, we're all different on this issue. So, which one do you prefer?

Ee-ingly yours,



*But then, she also insisted that correct way to pronounce Hawaii was "Huh-why-uh".

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