GFWC MO Sophomore Pilgrimage
Purpose: To give recognition to students in the Sophomore class of high school who exemplify high standards of Honor, Courage, Citizenship, Scholarship, Leadership, and Service.
Sophomore Pilgrimage students on the grand staircase in the Capitol Rotunda. Matthew Skaggs, Valle High School, is the first student in the second row from the Top. Taylor Werner, Ste. Genevieve High School, is the third student from the left in the fourth row. Representatives Paul Fitzwater, left and Kent Hampton, right, are on the first row.
Sophomore Pilgrimage students in the House of Representatives. Representative Kevin Engler is at the top with Taylor Werner, Ste. Genevieve High School, second row, third from Rep. Engler. Representative Kent Hampton is on the bottom row left with Matthew Skaggs, Valley High School, third student on that row. Representative Paul Fitzwater is on the far right in the photo.
The words of Mrs. Mary Hinton of Hannibal, taken from a 1934 yearbook, summarize the purpose of the project: The crying need of today is for more discreet, considerate, intelligent and loyal citizenship. We have chosen for our watchword “Missouri...our responsibility.” The future of our state and nation lies in the hands of our children. What they are taught, what they think and believe should be our greatest concern.
The first pilgrimage was made on March 5, 1935, with 104 sophomores in attendance. The annual date was later moved to the first Tuesday in April and then to the second Tuesday in April, its current scheduled date. The Pilgrimage is a gift of the General Federation of Women’s Clubs of Missouri, Inc. to all selected sophomores. Sponsoring clubs pay for the luncheon and provide transportation.
This project helps to promote good citizenship and enables the students to see our state government in action. Students tour the Capitol, Governor’s Mansion, Supreme Court and Jefferson Landing. They meet the Missouri State elected officials and the GFWC of Missouri, Inc. Executive Committee at a luncheon. A Certificate of Merit in Citizenship is presented to each Sophomore making the Pilgrimage.
From the two Federated Clubs in Jefferson City:
GFWC Capital City Women’s Club
GFWC Dianas Club
During the May 2009 State Convention, the Missouri State flag that was flown over the State Capitol on April 14, 2009 (the 75th Sophomore Pilgrimage) was presented to GFWC of Missouri by the State Legislature, represented by State Representative Deeken, who was a Sophomore Pilgrim in 1955. The flag has been framed with the accompanying certificate and was displayed at each District Fall 2009 Convention. It will now hang in the library at Missouri Girls Town.