State park and historic site day-use areas, lodging, campgrounds, boat ramps and trails continue to operate under normal off-season hours. Missouri State Parks has implemented a number of measures designed to maintain required social distancing and protect visitors, volunteers and staff, including the closure of visitor centers, nature centers, offices and museums. The latest information from Missouri State Parks on COVID-19 can be found here. A full list of temporary closures can be found here.
Paintings, photos, exhibits, items of interest and a free 30-minute presentation of the life of Gen. Pershing and World War I are available for you to view in the site office and orientation center, which is located at 1100 Pershing Dr. in Laclede, next to the Pershing Boyhood Home. Tours originate from here. Souvenirs are also available for purchase, including the book "Until the Last Trumpet Sounds" by Gene Smith, a biography about Gen. Pershing.
General John J. Pershing Boyhood Home Tours
Walking tours originate at the visitor contact point and depart for the boyhood home, which is located nearby. You will be taken inside the two-story house that has been furnished to reflect its appearance when Pershing was growing up here from 1866 to 1882. The house has had extensive restoration work completed in 2001. The home is not air-conditioned and you may experience a 19th-century interior environment when you visit.
Group tours of Gen. Pershing’s Boyhood Home State Historic Site are available at a discounted rate for groups of 15 or more that are scheduled at least two weeks in advance.
Site staff can tailor the tour to specific age groups and areas of interest; please indicate if your group is an elementary, high school or college class, club, organization or family outing. Call the historic site at 660-963-2525 to schedule a group tour.
When Planning a Group Visit
Plan on spending 30-45 minutes on the tour of the boyhood home itself. In addition, there is an optional 30-minute orientation film that focuses on Pershing and World War I. The exhibits in the Prairie Mounds School Museum also focus on Pershing’s life. Since the museum is a self-guided tour, an individual or group may take as little or as much time as they wish there.
For Teacher/Group Leaders
Coordinate your visit with classroom activities, or build a study unit around the museum/site experience. Discuss the visit before hand, and let your students know the purpose of the visit and what they may expect to see. Chaperones are required for student groups, and we suggest one adult chaperone per every 10 students.
Please arrive on time for your tour and remind members of your group that food, beverages and smoking are not allowed in the museum exhibit areas. We also ask that no items in the Pershing Boyhood Home be touched by visitors, as several of the artifacts are irreplaceable.
Public restrooms are handicap accessible and are located in the Prairie Mound School Museum.
Fees include tax. Qualified tax-exempt organizations MUST provide a copy of a tax exempt certificate at the time of payment.
Adults (18 and older): $4
Youth (Ages 6-17): $3
Child (Ages 0-5): Free*
Adults (18 and older): $3.50
Youth (Ages 6-17): $2.50
Child (Ages 0-5): Free*
*Children under the age of 6 are admitted free with a paid adult.
John Pershing taught in this one-room school before departing Missouri for West Point in 1882. The school was originally located about 15 miles from Laclede but was relocated to protect it and has been renovated into a museum. Themes in the museum reflect the doorways that Gen. Pershing passed through in his lifetime. From the doorway of the Prairie Mound School as a young adult, to the doorway of Walter Reed Hospital in Washington D.C., where he passed away on July 15, 1948 at age 87. The museum is open to the public for self-guided tours at no charge.
If you are unable to visit the site, please consider scheduling an off-site visit or program by site staff. Please call the site office at 660-963-2525 to arrange for an off-site program.