I don't know how it is in MO, but I just recently helped a friend fill out the paperwork to acquire a NC title to a vehicle that had come from TN with no title, in a nutshell (all this started Jan 18, 2005 and ended May 16, 2005), here's what we did:
1. Had to get & fill out forms from NCDMV listing the make, year, model, VIN and my friend's name, address, etc.
2. Submitted said paperwork to NCDMV and to the local NC State Police Station so both could perform routine checks & tracers to see if and who the vehicle had been registered to previously. Found out the vehicle had been registered to a now divorced couple from TN.
3. Filled out & filed more paperwork with the same info mentioned above plus newly discovered names & addresses to notary public, DMV, NCSP, and local court house to lay claim to vehicle.
4. After waiting the mandatory period to which the original owners had to respond to the NC government-sent registered mail giving them the option of re-claiming the vehicle (they did not respond), my friend was finally awarded a NC title, and is now enjoying the ride in his vehicle.
It took a bit of time for all the paperwork and the system to go full circle, but it was worth it. He got a very nice truck for a song. It cost him about $50 in fees for all the tracers, etc, plus the normal title & licensing costs after he was awarded ownership.
Hope this helps!
~(G)Q Arduously Avoiding Assimilation