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JEFFERSON CITY, MO, DEC. 29, 2023 – Forty pictures hang on the wall at the gas chamber within the Missouri State Penitentiary. Among the photos of condemned people, with expressions of sadness, pleading or defiance, the portrait of Claud McGee consistently stands out. The man’s eyes are piercing, menacing and yet strangely vacant, frequently prompting the question, “Is that man crazy?”

Claude McGee inmate photo

Join the team at Jefferson Landing State Historic Site Wednesday, Jan. 4 at 7 p.m., as they travel back in time to present Landing After Hours: The Story of Claud McGee. The educational program will provide an in-depth look at McGee’s life and death.

In this presentation, Missouri State Penitentiary history guide, former radio newsman and “Show Me Murder” podcast host Michael Lear presents the story of Claud McGee. Lear spent 19 years in news radio, including as Missourinet news director, and for the past 12 years has been a tour guide at the iconic Missouri State Penitentiary. Now as the host and creator of “Show Me Murder,” he takes a deep dive into some of the crimes that left a mark on Missouri history.

In the 1930s, McGee and his partner, John Manor, killed a man while robbing a home. While in prison, McGee’s death sentence was commuted to life in prison. He later killed his partner, who was a fellow inmate, over a $20 debt. McGee was tried and sentenced to death for his crime, making him the only Missouri State Penitentiary inmate to be executed for a crime committed while in prison.

The Missouri State Museum’s Landing After Hours program takes place at the Lohman Building, located at 100 Jefferson St. in Jefferson City, Missouri. Parking is available in the lot next to the building. In addition to being held in-person, this program will also be livestreamed on the Missouri State Museum’s Facebook page.  

For more information on state parks and historic sites, visit Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

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