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Missouri State Flag Missouri

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The Geography of Missouri

Click here  for a few definitions.

Longitude / Latitude Longitude: 89° 6'W to 95° 42'W
Latitude: 36°N to 40° 35'N
Missouri map
Missouri base and elevation maps
Length x Width Missouri is about 300 miles long and 240 miles wide.  
Geographic Center
Explanation
The geographic center of Missouri is located in Miller County, 20 miles SW of Jefferson City.
Longitude: 92° 37.9'W
Latitude: 32° 48.9'N
 
Borders Missouri is bordered by Iowa on the north and by Arkansas and Tennessee on the south. Illinois, Kentucky, and Tennessee border Missouri on the east and Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma border Missouri on the west.
Total Area Missouri covers 69,709 square miles, making it the 21st largest of the 50 states.
Land Area 68,898 square miles of Missouri are land areas.
Water Area 811 square miles of Missouri are covered by water.
Highest Point The highest point in Missouri is Taum Sauk Mountain at 1,772 feet above sea level.
Lowest Point The lowest point in Missouri is the St. Francis River at 230 feet above sea level.
Mean Elevation The Mean Elevation of the state of Missouri is 800 feet above sea level.
Major Rivers Current River, Mississippi River, Missouri River, Osage River, St. Francis River
Major Lakes Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Clearwater Lake, Lake Wappapello

The Land

North of the Missouri River, the state is composed of Dissected Till Plains. This area is covered with rich soil that is particularly good for growing corn. This well-watered prairie is criss-crossed by many slow-moving rivers and streams.

The Osage Plains cover western Missouri. This area is mostly flat but some hills are evident. The soil in this region is not as rich as in the Dissected Till Plains. Corn and other grain crops are grown in the Osage Plains region.

The largest land area in Missouri, the Ozark Plateau, is a place of beauty covered with forested hills and low mountains. Under foot are many caves. The area is also known for its large springs, lakes, and clear rivers. In the southwestern corner of Missouri, the high tableland makes for great gardens and great strawberries. The St. Francois Mountains are in the southeast. This area is the highest and most rugged section of the state. Taum Sauk Mountain, the highest point in Missouri, is located in the St. Francois Mountains.

The southern part of Missouri is covered by the Mississippi Alluvial Plain. This land, once swampy, has been drained to form a rich farmland suitable for growing cotton, soybeans, and rice. The southern portion of Missouri that juts into Arkansas, is called the Boot Heel because of its shape.

( Missouri Close-up )

Climate (All temperatures Fahrenheit)
Highest Temperature The highest temperature recorded in Missouri is 118°, Fahrenheit. This record high was recorded on July 15, 1936 at Clinton, on July 18, 1936 at Lamar, and on July 14, 1954 at Warsaw and Union.
Lowest Temperature The lowest temperature in Missouri, -40°, was recorded on February 13, 1905 at Warsaw.
Average Temperature Monthly average temperatures range from a high of 90.5 degrees to a low of 19.4 degrees.
Climate Average yearly precipitation for Missouri, from 1971 to 2000, is shown on this chart from Oregon State University.
Sources:
The World Almanac of the U.S.A. by Allan Carpenter and Carl Provorse, Copyright © 1998
Dale Robert Martin and Stephen Kneeshaw, "Missouri," World Book Online Americas Edition, http://www.worldbookonline.com/wbol/wbPage/na/ar/co/364800, August 15, 2001.
The United States Geological Survey Website
Maps.com http://www.maps.com
To Mississippi geography. To Montana geography.

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