National Register Listing in
Putnam County, Missouri

The town of Hermann, Missouri, is known for its wineries and German heritage. It was founded in 1837 by a group of German immigrants and is home to the annual Hermann Maifest, a celebration of German culture and traditions.
Putnam County, Missouri, located in the northeastern part of the state, has a rich history dating back to prehistoric times. The region was originally inhabited by Native American tribes such as the Sac and Fox, Iowa, and Kickapoo, who relied on hunting and gathering for sustenance. European settlement began in the early 19th century, with immigration from states like Kentucky, Tennessee, and Virginia.

In 1841, Putnam County was officially established and named after Israel Putnam, a hero of the American Revolutionary War. The county quickly became an agricultural center, with corn and wheat being the primary crops. The construction of the Hannibal and St. Joseph Railroad in the 1850s provided a significant boost to the local economy, facilitating transportation and trade.

During the Civil War, Putnam County was predominantly pro-Union, with many residents enlisting in the Union Army. However, the county also experienced skirmishes and raids by Confederate soldiers, as it was located near the border between Union and Confederate territories. After the war, the county saw an influx of settlers and experienced economic growth with the expansion of farming and the arrival of new businesses.

In the 20th century, Putnam County faced its fair share of challenges. The Great Depression hit the area hard, leading to a decline in agricultural production and a loss of population. However, efforts to diversify the economy and attract industries helped the county recover, and today, Putnam County remains a predominantly rural area known for its scenic landscapes and friendly community.

This timeline provides a concise overview of the key events in the history of Putnam County, Missouri.

  • 1821: Putnam County is established as a county in Missouri.
  • 1837: The town of Unionville is laid out as the county seat.
  • 1851: The Battle of Ash Hollow takes place during the Mormon War.
  • 1861: The American Civil War begins, and many Putnam County residents join the Union Army.
  • 1872: The Chicago, Burlington and Quincy Railroad is completed through Putnam County.
  • 1925: The Missouri State Highway Department is created, improving transportation infrastructure in the county.
  • 1930s: The Great Depression affects Putnam County, leading to economic hardships.
  • 1967: The Unionville Dam and Lake is constructed, providing recreational opportunities for residents.
  • 1993: The Putnam County Historical Society is formed to preserve and promote the county's history.
  • 2008: The Putnam County Courthouse, built in 1894, is restored to its original glory.