Mark Twain, one of America's most beloved authors, was born in Florida, Missouri, in 1835. He later moved to Hannibal, Missouri, where he set many of his famous stories, including "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn".
Nodaway County, Missouri has a rich history dating back to its establishment in 1845. The area was originally inhabited by Native American tribes, particularly the Sac and Fox tribes, who lived off the land and utilized the Nodaway River as a vital water source. The first European settlers arrived in the early 1830s, attracted by the fertile land and abundant wildlife.

The county's name, Nodaway, is derived from the Native American word meaning "placid" or "peaceful." The earliest settlements were primarily agricultural, with the cultivation of crops like corn and wheat playing a vital role in the county's economy. The county seat, Maryville, was established in 1845 and named after Mary Graham, the daughter of the town's founder.

The mid to late 19th century brought significant growth and development to Nodaway County. The arrival of the Hannibal and St. Joseph Railroad in the 1850s spurred economic growth and further land settlement. As more settlers moved to the area, towns and communities were established, and schools and churches were built to serve the growing population.

In the 20th century, Nodaway County experienced various changes and advancements. The county saw the rise of manufacturing industries, particularly in Maryville, which became a hub for manufacturing and trade. Education also became a prominent feature, with the establishment of Northwest Missouri State University in 1905, which brought more opportunities for students and further economic development.

Today, Nodaway County continues to thrive as a strong agricultural community, known for its fertile soil and rich farming traditions. It also remains an educational center, with Northwest Missouri State University being a major contributor to the county's economy. Nodaway County's history, blending Native American roots, pioneer spirit, and modern growth, has shaped it into the vibrant community it is today.

This timeline provides a condensed summary of the historical journey of Nodaway County, Missouri.

  • 1838 - Nodaway County established by Missouri Legislature.
  • 1845 - First county courthouse built in Maryville.
  • 1850 - Population reaches 2,580.
  • 1860 - The Civil War begins, impacting the county.
  • 1881 - Maryville College (now Northwest Missouri State University) founded.
  • 1889 - The county courthouse burns down, a new one is built in its place.
  • 1913 - First automobile dealership opens in Maryville.
  • 1957 - The city of Maryville constructs Mozingo Lake as a water source.
  • 1960 - Population reaches 22,808.
  • 1980 - Maryville Municipal Airport opens.
  • 1995 - Nodaway County Historical Society Museum established.