McDonald Territory Story Map

For this week’s assignment, I worked on the story map while Jonas worked on the time line. Here is a link to the story map on our site:

McDonald Story Map

Story Map JS was not to difficult to use. I watched an 8 minute tutorial and was using it just fine afterwards. The pictures I used were from a book I found in Truman’s Special Collections and from newspaper microfilms from the 1960s. I tried to go in as linear of a story progression as I could. I mentioned the rerouting of highway 71, which angered many of Noel’s residents before the vacation land map was even released. I then had the story progress from Jefferson City releasing the map without Noel, to Noel as they seceded and formed their own militia, to the potential deals with Arkansas and the Cherokee tribe, to Jefferson City as the State Congress rejected the secessionist movement.

Yes California

The Yes California movement holds two core beliefs: 1. California exerts a positive influence on the rest of the world, and 2. California could do more good as an independent country than it is able to do as just a U.S. state. The introduction also states that California has the sixth largest economy in the world and a larger population than Poland. These are just a few of the reasons for which the Yes California movement is pushing for a citizen’s initiative for the 2018 ballot, which if passed, means that California citizens will have the ability to vote to secede from the Union by the Spring of 2019. Yes California cites the United Kingdom’s secession from the European Union as a similar situation and believes they have just as much of a right to secede from the United States as the U.K. had to leave the EU. Personally, I think that the United Kingdom situation is quite different. The United Kingdom has been its own entity for over 300 years, California was an unrecognized state for about 25 days in 1846 and has been a part of the United states ever since.
The Yes California movement has 9 key points as to why they believe it would be best to secede: 1. Peace and Security, 2. Elections and Government, 3. Trade and Regulation, 4. Debt and Taxes, 5. Immigration, 6. Natural Resources, 7. The Environment, 8. Health and Medicine, and 9. Education. After reading through their description of the 9 points, I can see why many Californians have such a strong desire to leave the United States. Where as before looking into their reasons, I thought it ridiculous for them to want to secede. The biggest points that stood out to me were the trade and regulation, debt and taxes, natural resources, and education. As Yes California puts it, The United States government currently holds a “burdensome trade system” that hurts their economy because trade is made difficult and expensive for Californian businesses. As for the debt and taxes, California has been subsidizing the other states at a cost of 10s to 100s of billions of dollars every fiscal year, forcing them to raise taxes in order to support the other states.
Natural resources are quite important to self sustainability, and currently the U.S. government and its agencies hold 46% of California and are using the natural resources to pay of its debt. Yes California wants to take that 46% and use the resources to help their own independent country. California does have some of the best Universities, yet as Yes California claims, their public school system is in shambles. As an independent country, they would be able to have more control over their school system, and hopefully improve it exponentially.
Despite these valid points, I highly doubt that California will be allowed to secede from the Union. I can’t see the United States government stand by while they lose one of the biggest economies in the nation. They may believe they are doing everything legally, which they very well may be doing. Yet if the U.S. government does not want California to secede, it would not be very difficult to step in and stop them. Of course, this is assuming that the vote to secede even passes.

Kodey Springate and Jonas Chang’s Contract 1st Draft

Kodey Springate and Jonas Chang

Divided Houses Project Contract

February 11, 2017

Project Site:


Mission Statement


  • The goal of this project is to make the cultural, political, and economic aspects of Territory of McDonald secessionist movement, a little known part of Missouri history, accessible in a user-friendly site. Because there are very few resources available concerning this movement, particularly scholarly sources, we would like to make this site publicly oriented accessible. In this way, the site would be available for anyone to use, but still provide resources useful for other researchers.
  • The structure of our site will be this: there will be a homepage that will include a picture of some of the secessionists, a brief summary of the site, and the content of the site. A timeline may be included on this page. The picture will run along the top of the site, edged on the bottom of the picture will be links to the other pages. The other pages will include The Decade Before, which will discuss economic, political, and cultural tensions within the county before the secession; The Family Vacationland Crisis, Secession, and Reconciliation. Each page will include text information and photographs. Each page may also include videos of oral history, though a separate page may contain the oral histories of the movement.
  • General elements will include newspaper articles from the time period under study. We may also include videos or transcripts from news shows as well. Tentatively, we hope to include oral histories acquired by us from people who lived through the secessionist movement, which will either have their own page or be dispersed throughout the website where relevant.


Tools We Plan to Use


  • As of now, we do not know which WordPress theme we will be using and, as such, we do not know what plugins or layouts we will be using.
  • If we include a timeline on the main page we will be using a timeline tool, perhaps JSTimeline.
  • We do not know which tools we will be using, but we will need tools to work with images,videos, and potentially audio files, possibly Camtasia Studio.


Schedule of Milestones

February 17- Kodey will have scheduled a meeting with Janet Romine by this point.

March 13-17- Jonas will go to the McDonald County Historical Society to visit the archives and record oral histories

-Kodey will go to Jefferson City to check out the Missouri State Archives


March 31- Have first draft of website ready to go


Who Will Do What



  • Schedule a meeting with Janet Romine to look through the Truman archives to see if there are any documents easily accessible.
  • Get into contact with and visit the Missouri State Archives in Jefferson City



  • Visit the archives at the McDonald County Historical Society
  • Attempt to schedule, lead, and record oral histories from McDonald County citizens who lived through the secessionist movement

Steven Ozment’s Protestants: The Birth of a Revolution

In this excerpt of Protestants: The Birth of a Revolution, Steven Ozment discusses the reasoning behind the reformation movement in the 1520s, why lay people were angry with the Roman church, why they converted to Protestantism, and why German magistrates and princes picked up the movement and made it successful.

Many Germans were angry with the Catholic church for the corruption that ran so rampantly throughout the clergy. Some of the common complaints include:

  • The papacy was conducting frequent lawsuits against lay people with the threat of excommunication
  • High church positions were being sold by the Pope to the highest bidder
  • The Pope reserved high sins and crimes. Meaning they could only be absolved if one would go to Rome and pay in gold; thus ensuring that the poor were stuck with sins while the rich could do whatever they wanted and get away with it
  • The clergy were sworn to celibacy, yet many lived with women and fathered children (This complaint was controversial, as some despised the priests and women while others believed it humanized the priests and made them more relatable)
  • The largest complaint was the sale of indulgences, where one would pay to absolve sins after death so that they would not be stuck in purgatory.

Ozment claims that the protestant movement was as political as it was spiritual. He goes on to tell us that there were two opposing forces, the emerging territorial states of Europe, and the small, self-governing towns and villages. The reason the reformation gained its initial popularity was because the lay people in these small self-governing communes saw the protestant movement as a way to remain free and independent from the rising powers around them. Those who were strong opponents of government authority advocated for the reformation, such as the printers’ guild, who printed much of the protestant propaganda.

The major reformers knew that their movement was political as well as spiritual, yet they did not support the lay peoples’ actions such as the peasant revolt of 1525. Rather, they knew that in order for their movement to be successful, they would have to win over the hearts of the magistrates and princes. Many of which soon converted to Protestantism because they believed the reforms would strengthen their power and ensure their independence from other authorities. With the support of the princes and magistrates, the protestant reformation began to appear in the political ordinances of the 1530s and 1540s: Service was done in the vernacular, people read the new testament in their own homes, the clergy could marry, people were not to venerate saints in public, and indulgences were no longer sold.