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Situated on the southern banks of the Missouri River, the city of Sedalia is the county seat of Pettis County, Missouri, and the host of the Missouri State Fair and the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival. US Highways 50 and 65 intersect in Sedalia. The town was founded by General George Rappeen Smith, who is also credited with founding the nearby town of Smithton. The town was platted in 1857, and originally named Sedville. It was incorporated as Sedalia in October of 1860, six months before the beginning of the American Civil War. During the American Civil War, the city was occupied by Union troops, although its citizens were evenly divided between those who sympathized with the North, those whose loyalties were with the South, and those who would rather remain neutral during the conflict. No major battles were fought in Sedalia, although there were local conflicts and skirmishes, usually involving bushwackers. Surrounding communities include Dresden, Georgetown, Smithton, and Spring Fork.

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