Missouri Reform School for Boys

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Missouri Reform School for Boys
Opened 1887
Current Status Active
Building Style Cottage Plan
Location Boonville, MO
Alternate Names


The Missouri State Training School for Boys at Boonville was founded in 1887 as a facility for wayward juvenile males. Over the years the school offered educational, vocational, and recreational opportunities supplemented by social service, psychology, medical attention and religious opportunities. In 1938 the Missouri Reform School for Boys at Boonville, which held as many as 650 youth at a time, was labeled one of the worst juvenile correctional institutions in the nation. In 1969 a federal report condemned Boonville as severely substandard in its efforts to rehabilitate and educate youth. In the 1970s, Missouri officials began to mandate fundamental reform, emphasizing rehabilitation over punishment. The facility was transferred to the Missouri Department of Corrections in 1983 as a medium security center for adult males.


To date 23 people have been identified from Missouri Online Death Records but only one tombstone has been inscribed.