Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

St. Louis Regional history comes alive in this joint production by KDHX and the Missouri Historical Society. Stories of our past are connected with the present in these well researched and entertaining short presentations about the people, places, and events that have shaped who we are and who we are becoming. 

Jul 12, 2022

Everyone is a part of history, no matter how the history books are written. Sometimes, there's a figure you'd think should be all over the history books based upon their accomplishments, but they only stand at the edge of written history book. William Taussig was such a person. Just Press play to hear the whole story. ------

Click on search links to see if there are episodes with related content:  Amanda Clark, Architecture, Engineering, Health and Wellness, Medical, Civil War, People of Note, Politics and Government, Civil Rights, 

Podcast Transcript: I’m Amanda Clark, with the Missouri Historical Society, and this is Here’s History on eighty eight one, KDHX. ——— 

Some of the biggest stories in St. Louis history – the 1849 cholera epidemic, the Eads Bridge and Tunnel, the Civil War, the building of Union Station, and more, involve a man named Dr. William Taussig, a name unfamiliar to most. Taussig is one of those who stand just at the edge of the historic record, their extraordinary life stories hidden between the lines of other’s biographies. But Taussig’s story is one of bravery, strong leadership, and dedication to St. Louis that few can match. ———

Born in Prague, William Taussig arrived in St. Louis in 1847, working first as a chemist and then a physician.  During the 1849 cholera epidemic, he worked directly with sick patients at the city’s quarantine station. Two years later, he would be named the first mayor of Carondelet and was an outspoken abolitionist. In 1855, Taussig was aboard a train full of local dignitaries when a bridge collapse caused the cars to plunge into the Gasconade River. The horrific crash would kill over 30 people, including Taussig’s brother-in-law, who had been seated next to him. Despite his own injuries, he was able to quickly begin rescuing others, treating the wounded, and help coordinate recovery efforts. ———

During the Civil War, as threats to the city increased, Taussig personally raised the funds to provide for two local regiments when the city could not, and when Confederate marauders attacked the state asylum, Taussig immediately organized a daring rescue mission through enemy territory without military transport, bringing the patients safely back to St. Louis. ———

But Taussig’s biggest contribution to St. Louis history would begin when James B. Eads named him chairman of his bold bridge-building project – a role that would require herculean political and financial effort. Taussig devoted the rest of his career to the railroad industry, including the building of the magnificent Union Station in 1892. ———

Here’s history is a joint production of the Missouri History Museum and KDHX.  I’m Amanda Clark and this is 88.1 KDHX St. Louis. ———