Missouri State Nickname

The Show Me State

Missouri is commonly referred to as the "Show-Me State." The origin of this nickname dates back to the late 19th century, with the phrase attributed to a U.S. Congressman named Willard Vandiver. In a speech delivered in 1899, Vandiver declared, "I come from a state that raises corn and cotton and cockleburs and Democrats, and frothy eloquence neither convinces nor satisfies me. I am from Missouri. You have got to show me." The phrase "Show Me" became associated with the state's residents and their reputation for being practical, skeptical, and requiring evidence before accepting something. The state officially adopted the nickname over the years, and it remains a symbol of Missouri's independent and discerning nature.