Welcome to Missouri’s historic capital city! Jefferson City is the heart of the Amtrak Missouri River Runner route with the station’s location ideal for those planning a trip to explore downtown Jefferson City’s attractions on foot. Here are historic staples you can’t miss.


Lohman Building

Visitors arriving will immediately be greeted by the Jefferson Landing State Historic Site, comprised of the city’s oldest buildings – the Lohman Building, the Maus House, and the Union Hotel. Depicting an 1850s general store and warehouse, the Lohman Building is open to the public March-December.


Missouri State Capitol

Walking up Jefferson Street and taking a right will make for a beautiful sight of the Missouri State Capitol in all her glory. Visitors will come across the Lewis and Clark Trailhead Plaza before circling the seat of state government. On the north side of the Capitol are memorials to commemorate Missouri’s veterans and law enforcement.


Missouri Supreme Court Building

The three-quarters point of the loop around the Capitol can either take visitors to the main southside entrance of the building or lead to High Street, lined with the Missouri Supreme Court Building, tasty restaurants, and quaint shopping boutiques. Guided tours of the Capitol are offered year-round; however, the public can also walk around to admire the stunning murals and intriguing Missouri State Museum located on the first floor.


Carnahan Memorial Garden

Heading east on Capitol Avenue, visitors will come across the Carnahan Memorial Garden and the Missouri Governor’s Mansion. What was once considered a public eyesore below the Mansion, First Lady Donnelly took the horticultural initiative to supervise the transformation of the space into a beautiful garden encompassing a sunken pool, terraces, walkways, and a pergola. The Mansion, occupied since 1872, is one of the oldest governors’ homes in the United States and one of few executive residences open to the public. Located on 10 acres overlooking the Missouri River and the Missouri State Capitol, the Mansion is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Reservations to tour the residence need to be made in advance.


Missouri State Penitentiary

Walking further east on Capitol Avenue and taking a left on Lafayette Street will lead visitors to the main entrance of the decommissioned Missouri State Penitentiary. Built in 1836 to secure Jefferson City as the state capital, it was the oldest continually operating prison west of the Mississippi River before closing its doors in 2004. History tours began in 2009 and have grown in popularity over the years. History tours are offered by day, and ghost tours/paranormal investigations are offered by night. The former prison has been featured on many television shows and independent film projects, putting Jefferson City in the national spotlight.


Marmaduke House

Before or after a tour, visitors are encouraged to explore the Missouri State Penitentiary Museum located beneath the Convention and Visitors Bureau at 700 E Capitol Ave. The museum and visitor’s bureau are housed inside the Col. Darwin Marmaduke House, the former warden’s home built in 1888. Here you’ll learn additional historical information about the famous prison that operated for 168 years. The museum houses MSP memorabilia and a replica cell that demonstrates the living conditions at the prison.


MO River Runner

For additional stops and things to do along the rail, visit MoRiverRunner.com.

Mentioned In This Story

Missouri State Capitol

  • 201 W. Capitol Ave.
  • (573) 751-2854

Completed in 1917, the Capitol covers three acres in downtown Jefferson City. Inside the Capitol you…

Missouri State Museum

  • 201 W. Capitol Ave.
  • (573) 751-2854

The Missouri State Museum is located on the first floor of the Missouri State Capitol Building and…

Carnahan Memorial Garden

  • 101 Jefferson St.

A striking complement to the Capitol Complex, the Garden, located next to the Governor's Mansion…

Missouri Governor's Mansion

  • 100 Madison St.
  • (573) 751-4141

Inside the walls of the Missouri Governor’s Mansion, guests will have the opportunity to step back…

Missouri State Penitentiary

  • 115 Lafayette St.
  • (866) 998-6998

Decommissioned in 2004, the Missouri State Penitentiary was the oldest continually operating prison…