Augusta seniors will again sponsor a series of summer history-telling programs for the public on the first Sunday afternoon of the month, beginning May 4.

The history series, “Augusta and How It Grew,” will be presented at the Augusta Vistors Center, 5577 Walnut St., from 2 to 3 p.m. by the Friends of Historic Augusta (FHA).

May 4, ‘Founding’ Program

Bob and Ellen Knoernschild’s May 4 presentation, “Before the Germans: Spanish Land Grants and the Founding of Augusta,” begins with the 1790s.

Early settler families from Kentucky and Virginia arrive at the “Mount Pleasant Landing;” Leonard Harold founds Mount Pleasant (later Augusta) and marries into one of the pioneer families.

After Missouri became a state in 1821, Harold purchased property from the federal government and sold lots in his town. Early town residents were all of English descent.

By the 1840s, Augusta was a thriving settlement, and Harold was one of the wealthiest men in the country. However, after marrying a fortune hunter, he reached old age in poverty.

Program Series

The history themes presented later by other FHA members will include the beginning of the organized Augusta wine industry with a visit to the Historic Wine Hall), June 1, presented by Kathryn Frazier;

Reporting of early Augusta news by George Grumke, July 6, presented by Paul Kemner;

Initial riverfront businesses and their locations, Aug. 3, presented by Anita Mallinckrodt;

Development of brick to frame architecture, described during guided tour of the Walnut Street Architectural District, Sept. 7, presented by Carol Clover; and

Expansion of settlement westward to Mount Pleasant and the Sehrt House (museum, with a visit to its traditional kitchen), Oct. 5, presented by Clarence Sehrt, Jeanette Sehrt and Sally Heining.

On the days of these FHA programs at the Visitors Center, the Historic Museum at Webster/High streets will be open to the public from 1 to 4 p.m.

For additional information, people can call 636-228-4821 or 636-482-4558.