State Representative McGirl Says Happy 300th Birthday to Old Mines

(Old Mines) A major milestone is being celebrated this year in Washington County.

State Representative Mike McGirl of Potosi is proud of a neighboring community that has reached not one hundred, not two hundred, but three centuries old here in 2023.

The City of Ste. Genevieve usually gets all the glory when it comes to the oldest community in Missouri.

It’s known as the Oldest Permanent European Settlement West of the Mississippi River.

Some historians say Ste. Gen was founded in 1735, some say 1740 while others say it was 1750.

However, none of those dates go back as far as Old Mines and it’s founding date of 1723.

Representative McGirl puts Ste. Genevieve even a few years younger than the 1750 founding date.

It seems Old Mines doesn’t get all the praise it probably deserves.

Much larger Ste. Genevieve receives most of the historic glory because it became a full-fledged city.

Old Mines never made it above unincorporated village status.

According to, some historians believe the first structure built in Old Mines could date all the way back to 1719.

That’s when says a French lead miner constructed some cabins.

On Sunday, March 19th, the Washington County Expo will take place at St. Joachim Catholic Church In Old Mines.

The annual French Heritage Seminar is the first weekend in April.

The weekend of May 20th and 21st, the Spring Rendezvous will take place in Old Mines.

Several other special events will take place for the remainder of the year.