James W. Goodrich Graduate Research Assistantship in Missouri History

In Memoriam

James W. "Jim" Goodrich
(1939–2007)

Executive Director, 1985-2004

James W. Goodrich

The State Historical Society of Missouri
James W. Goodrich Graduate Research Assistantship in Missouri History

Public service was the hallmark of Jim Goodrich's leadership of the State Historical Society of Missouri, and community engagement characterized his life as a citizen. His dry wit and acerbic sense of humor entertained friends and colleagues. Love of family dominated his personal life. Jim died October 24, 2007.

At the Society's 2007 annual meeting, former president Bruce Beckett eulogized, "Jim was one of those rare individuals who could always make you feel that he was glad to see you, whatever the occasion and wherever it took place....You always left his company feeling better than you did when you first got there."

University of Missouri President James Olson and his wife Vera
University of Missouri President James Olson
and his wife Vera
Representative Francis 'Bud' Barnes
Representative Francis "Bud" Barnes
Avis Tucker
Avis Tucker

A student of Lewis Atherton, University of Missouri-Columbia professor and historian of American westward expansion, Jim compared history to a road map. "If we don't know where we've been, we may not know where we're going." He helped scholars, students, and citizens document, describe, and understand the journey.

Lawrence Christensen
Lawrence Christensen

Jim was a voracious reader, unrelenting researcher, and "an absolutely superb editor who always improved the manuscript," remembered Lawrence Christensen, University of Missouri-Rolla professor emeritus, Society trustee, and friend. Jim was also an avid duck hunter with a legendary decoy collection.

Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh Sr., Robert Smith, Rush H. Limbaugh Sr.
Judge Stephen N. Limbaugh Sr.,
Robert Smith, Rush H. Limbaugh Sr.
Hank Waters
Hank Waters

Collaboration, collegiality, and a passion for history marked Jim's 37-year Society career. With staff, fellow historians, and historical and preservation agency colleagues, he expanded the collection, preservation, and publication of historical records. He edited four books and 37 volumes of the Missouri Historical Review. He wrote dozens of articles and gave hundreds of talks. He strengthened the Society's nationally significant art collection. He initiated an oral history program. He enthusiastically supported the Society's vital sponsorship of History Day in Missouri.

Councilman Jim Goodrich
Columbia City Council

Jim served his local community as an active volunteer and Columbia City Council member with "an uncanny ability to bridge the gap between the business community and the university," according to Bob Pugh, CEO of MBS Textbook Exchange and former Columbia mayor.

Councilman Jim Goodrich
Columbia City Council
Jill and Riley Bock
Jill and Riley Bock
Avis Tucker, Claire Shane Lohnes, daughter of artist Fred Shane, Sidney Larson, Robert Smith
Avis Tucker, Claire Shane Lohnes, daughter of
artist Fred Shane, Sidney Larson, Robert Smith

Jim's family chose the Society's James W. Goodrich Fund to receive memorials. Created when Jim retired, the Goodrich Fund supports a graduate research assistantship in Missouri history. It is a fitting tribute, as Jim began his four-decade relationship with the Society and the University as a graduate research assistant in the Joint Collection of Western Historical Manuscripts and State Historical Society of Missouri Manuscripts.

The Society invites gifts to the The James W. Goodrich Graduate Research Assistantship. For more information, contact Gary Kremer, Executive Director, at 573.882.7083.

"If we don’t know where we’ve been, we may not know where we’re going." — Jim Goodrich
"If we don’t know where we’ve been, we may not know where we’re going." — Jim Goodrich

The State Historical Society of Missouri