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Named for the city by that name in Ohio, Canton, Missouri is in Lewis County. The city was founded in 1830, three years before the county, and Isaac Bland, Robert Sinclair, and Edward White are credited as its founders, with White building the first home in the community in 1830, a building that also served as a tavern. The founding of Canton is related to the village of Tully, which was about one mile north of Canton, with a slightly better area for steamboats to anchor, a fact that slowed the growth of Canton during its first two decades, until Tully was mostly destroyed by a series of floods, and finally put underwater with the construction of Lock and Dam Number 20. On higher ground, Canton took the place of Tully, and was incorporated as a town in 1851. Ferry service operated in the area since 1844, patronized by local travelers and those headed westward. Prior to the Civil War, a stage line ran from Canton to Kirksville. Christian University was established din Canton in 1853, now known as Culver-Stockton College. As a strategic river port, Canton was significantly involved in the Civil War, with both the Union and Confederates recruiting locally. Canton’s college was closed during the war, and Union troops occupied the town in 1861, while Canton was attacked by Confederate troops in August of 1862. Canton is situated on the western banks of the Mississippi River in northeastern Missouri, and accessed primarily from US Highway 61 and Missouri Highways 81 and 16. La Grange is south of Canton, and Monticello is to the west, with the Mississippi River forming the border of Missouri and Illinois.



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