Thanks to Becky Imhauser, Sedalia’s Downtown History is Complete

Dr. Rebecca Imhauser has just published her third book on Downtown Sedalia, Missouri, titled All Around Downtown: Volume 2. This publication includes the West side of Ohio Street from Main to the Scott Joplin Memorial Highway (Broadway).

I have previously written about the abundance of books about Sedalia and Pettis County, Missouri, (see TST February 2020, p. 18.) This volume adds to one of the most thorough local history accounts of any community large or small in the country. In fact, it is no surprise that Dr. Imhauser has been named Missouri’s best local author for the past five years in a row.

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Her two other major volumes are, All Along Ohio Street 1856-1970 (2006), and All Around Downtown, Vol. 1 (2011). The trilogy details an occupancy chronology for every property in the downtown area including the primary thoroughfare, Ohio Street from Main to Broadway and for two city blocks east on the numbered streets. This includes Main Street.

Like the other two volumes, this book is literally packed with images appropriate for the addresses, most are from Dr. Imhauser’s own extensive collection of Sedalia photographs and ephemera. The book is attractively composed, and the pages are filled with information without being cluttered. The complete index adds further value for researchers.

Alongside Dr. Edward Berlin’s major biography of Scott Joplin (The King of Ragtime; Oxford University Press, 2nd Ed.; 2016), ragtime and popular culture researchers now have valuable resources for the study of Joplin in Sedalia and the city’s long musical heritage.


Dr. Becky Imhauser is a prominent Missouri educator and conference leader. She has authored 19 books, with 11 about Sedalia or Pettis County. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English and holds a master’s and doctor’s degrees in Education. Her family roots are in Pettis County and she has lived much of her life in Sedalia.

To purchase her books, go to Dr. Imhauser’s website, The cost for each of her above-mentioned books is US $37.50 including postage and handling.

Larry Melton was a founder of the Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival in 1974 and the Sedalia Ragtime Archive in 1976. He was a Sedalia Chamber of Commerce manager before moving on to Union, Missouri where he is currently helping to conserve the Ragtime collection of the Sedalia Heritage Foundation. Write him at [email protected].

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