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The city of Branson, Missouri, is known as the "live music show capital of the world". It has more than 100 live shows and attracts millions of visitors each year.
Howell County, located in the southern part of Missouri, has a rich history that dates back thousands of years. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, such as the Osage and Delaware, who relied on the vast natural resources for their survival. European explorers began to settle in the region in the late 18th century, with the Spanish being the first to establish a presence.

In the early 19th century, as the United States expanded westward, Howell County saw an influx of settlers from other parts of the country. The county was officially established in 1851 and named after Josiah Howell, a Missouri state legislator. The county's economy initially relied on agriculture, especially tobacco and corn farming, as well as livestock raising.

During the American Civil War, Howell County was heavily divided, with some residents supporting the Confederacy and others remaining loyal to the Union. The county experienced several skirmishes and raids, leaving a lasting impact on the local communities. After the war, Howell County began to recover and grow, with the expansion of railroad lines and the establishment of industries such as timber and logging.

In the 20th century, Howell County continued to evolve and adapt. The construction of highways and improved infrastructure led to further growth and development. Today, the county boasts a diverse economy that includes agriculture, manufacturing, healthcare, and tourism. With its scenic beauty, outdoor recreational opportunities, and thriving communities, Howell County remains a vibrant and historically significant part of Missouri.

This timeline provides a glimpse into the major events and milestones that have shaped the history of Howell County, Missouri.

  • 1818 - Howell County, MO is established as part of the Missouri Territory.
  • 1851 - The first settlement is established in the area.
  • 1857 - The county is officially organized and named after Howell Valley.
  • 1861-1865 - Howell County is heavily impacted by the American Civil War.
  • 1872 - West Plains becomes the county seat.
  • 1883 - The Kansas City, Fort Scott and Memphis Railroad is completed, improving transportation in the county.
  • 1928 - The Missouri State Fruit Experiment Station is established in Mountain Grove.
  • 1962 - The West Plains Civic Center is constructed.
  • 1974 - A tornado strikes West Plains, causing significant damage.
  • 1997 - The West Plains High School is constructed.