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Jesse James Brings Hollywood to the Ozarks

In 1938, the Hollywood movie “Jesse James” was filmed in the Missouri Ozarks. The movie, produced by Twentieth Century Fox and starring Tyrone Power, Henry Fonda, and Nancy Kelly, was primarily filmed in McDonald County, and many of its citizens took part in the movie as extras. The film, which was a box office success, was Missouri’s first major contribution to Hollywood filmmaking history. And every August the city of Pineville continues to commemorate its role in the film with its annual “Jesse James Days” celebration.

You can view the Jesse James Movie collection, or browse the entire Missouri Digital Heritage website.

The Jesse James Movie collection includes photographs and memorabilia from the 1938 shooting of the film. These items document the arrival of Hollywood stars and production teams, the filming of the movie in Pineville and elsewhere in McDonald County, and involvement of locals. Included are on- and off-set candid shots of the movie stars.

The Missouri Digital Heritage site (formally “Virtually Missouri”) has more than 6.8 million records, including the collections of the Missouri State Archives, the Missouri State Library and more than 50 institutions from across the state. There’s a wealth of fascinating photographs, maps, state records and other historical documents. We are very pleased to be a part of this excellent resource!

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