Research unveils curious history of Callaway County seat swapping

This is the location believed to be that of Brite’s Tavern.

This is the location believed to be that of Brite’s Tavern. (Contributed photo)

In early spring, 1821, several of Callaway County’s most prominent, early residents met to discharge the duty specifically delegated to them by Missouri’s legislature to create and locate the county’s first “seat of justice.” After meeting for days, this commission formally issued its report, founding the county seat of Elizabeth — a town where no one ever lived, where only one building was ever erected, and whose location is no longer even known. Yet, before the town of Elizabeth literally fell off the map, its history changed the story of Callaway County for good.

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