Named after Benjamin Franklin, Franklin County was organized in 1818 and includes 931 square miles of area to the west/southwest of St Louis, Missouri. Franklin County is the third-largest county in the state of Missouri based upon area. Bordered by the Missouri River to the north (except for portions of Augusta which, thanks to the Missouri river changing course over time, is now on the north side of the Missouri River. Franklin County also has the Bourbeuse River running through it (for over 100 miles) as well as the Meramec River.
Franklin County's early residents included many German immigrants who later started vineyards within the county and, prior to Prohibition, helped make Missouri the second-largest wine-producing state in the nation. Prohibition put an end to most of the mine production in Missouri however, since about the 1960s there has been significant growth in wine production in Missouri, including within Franklin County. In fact, included in Franklin County is the Hermann American Viticultural Area (AVA).
The county seat for Franklin County is Union, Missouri.
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