In Northwest Missouri

 History of Worth County

Worth County was organized in February of 1861 and was the last of Missouri's 114 counties to be formed. It encompasses 267 square miles and is the state's smallest county.

What is now Worth County formed the extreme Northwest corner of Missouri with the annexation of the Platte Indian Purchase Territory in 1837. The county was first settled by Henry Lott in 1840 and was named for New York General William Jenkins Worth who served in the Florida and Mexican wars. Worth County was roamed by Indians into the 1850's and was a strong Union county during the Civil War.

Through Worth County, a fertile grain and livestock farming area, flows the Platte and three main forks of the Grand River. Mineral springs at the towns of Denver, platted in 1849, and Allendale in 1855, were utilized as health spas in the 1880's. The first county seat was located in Smithton and was moved in Grant City in 1864. Among other communities are Oxford, laid out in 1856, Isadora in 1864, Irena in 1882 and Worth in 1899. Sheridan was founded when the Great Western Railroad was built through the western part of Worth County in 1887.

Worth County Courthouse
The County Courthouse in Grant City is a prominent landmark. Work started on what was the third courthouse in the spring of 1889, and the building was completed in late winter of 1899 for a total cost of $25,226.10. A centennial celebration was held in the fall of 1998.
A granite monument honoring Glen Miller and John Mosbarger is located on the S.E. corner of the Courthouse lawn. Glen Miller received and learned to play his first horn from his employer and band leader, Mr. Mosbarger, while living in Grant City during the years 1915 to 1918.


Recreational Areas

Denver Access - Located south of Denver at old Soward's Ford. The access is a recreation and primitive camping area, maintained by the Missouri State Conservation Commission.



 Emmet & Leah Seat Memorial Conservation Area - Located in Worth and Gentry Counties, 11 miles north of Albany on Route C and four miles east of Denver on Route M. Total acreage of the area is 3,164. More than 300 acres of native warm-season grasses have been established and pasture-to-timber conversion is being carried out on 200+ acres. Other habitat management includes tree, shrub and grass plantings and forest management. The area's diverse habitat provides food and shelter for a wide range of game and non-game wildlife species. In cooperation with agricultural agencies, the Conservation Department has developed a demonstration farm on a portion of the area. Educational field days open to the public are held annually and interested groups can tour the farm throughout the year.


 Worth County Lake - Located in the southwest portion of the county, the lake occupies approximately 21 acres. The Worth County Lake offers fishing by pole and line only and is stocked with bass, bluegills, crappie and channel cat. There is a boat ramp available for boats using trolling motors only.


 Grant City Recreational Complex - Located in the northeast corner of town. The complex includes a golf course, Scout cabin, roller skating rink and baseball diamond. The Grant City Park features a swimming pool, sand volleyball court, shelter house and modern playground equipment. The Worth County Fairgrounds is located across the street west from the complex.


Sheridan Burr Stone
The Sheridan Park displays this stone burr from a gristmill that the original village was built around on the Platte River. The stone burr crushed grain in that mill. The original village was called Defiance but it's location and identity was changed to Sheridan with advent of the railroad.



Denver Concrete Block Buildings
Long before the advent of mass-produced blocks, commercially manufactured concrete blocks, builders were using concrete blocks as building materials. One Denver resident, Louis Powanz, made quite a mark on this little community overseeing the construction of several concrete block business buildings, the bandstand, and some stone fences (1904-1912) which are still standing today. The old individually molded blocks were much heavier than their modern counterparts. Usually, the side of the block visible on the outside was not of smooth surface but had a distinctive design. A builder could be recognized by the block design. Historic preservationists consider these buildings to be one of the most outstanding early-day block construction displays in Missouri.


 1950's Canvas Advertising Mural
A beautiful large canvas mural advertising piece from the 1950's is located in the community hall in Worth, MO.

 Denver Schoolhouse Museum
In 1870 a large and commodious, good substantial frame school building was erected at a cost of $2800 and a graded school instituted (the first in the county). The application to the National Historic Registry is being worked on at this time and restoration is continuing on this building. The Museum is open by appointment and for special events.




Iron Markers Dividing Missouri from Iowa
On October 2, 1989 a bronze plaque on a stone of Missouri red granite was dedicated by the Virginia Daughters Chapter of the D.A.R. at the location of the original Northwest corner of Missouri, located four miles northeast of Sheridan. The plaque was placed beside the old cast iron post boundary marker, remnant of the Honey War, placed there in 1950 marking the boundary as determined by the Sullivan Survey in 1816. The iron post was placed due north of Kansas City, but because of the Platte Purchase in 1836, the boundary was later extended west to the Missouri River.


 Isadora Church of Christ
The congregation of the Church of Christ in Isadora was established in December of 1900. Arrangements were made to purchase and move the church building erected in the Pleasant Ridge neighborhood(located approximately 3-4 miles northeast of Isadora) in 1872 to the present location. The building was divided into at least two sections to prepare for the move that would be completed in June of 1901. The building as it appears today is much the same with only a few changes. The small but faithful congregation of present day strongly reflects the family heritages of the original members.

Gar Memorial
The memorial was erected in 1896 to honor those Union soldiers who had given their lives in the Civil War. Mr. Del Eighmy, Sr. was commissioned by the local unit of the G.A.R. to sculpt an appropriate monument to be placed in the Grant City Cemetery. The stone was ordered from a quarry in Bedford, Indiana and when the rough square stone arrived in Grant City, it was the heaviest single object which had come into town on the railroad. The stone was 3 feet square, 11 feet, 5 inches long and weighed in excess of 8 tons. The stone came into Grant City in April, 1896. By Memorial Day the work was finished and had been placed on a heavy base at the cemetery. On Memorial Day, 1896, a crowd estimated at 6,000 gathered in the cemetery for the dedication ceremony.



Clive Rickabaugh Art Works
Two of the works of the nationally recognized artist and sculptor, the late Clive Rickabaugh, can be seen in the town of Sheridan. A mural depicting the beginnings of the town as Defiance on the bank of the Platte River, and then as the town of Sheridan some little distance to the west, covers a wall in the Farmers State Bank Building. Carvings of The Last Supper and other religious figures are located in the Christian Church in Sheridan.









Annual 4th of July Breakfast (July)
Flea Market (July)
Allendale Rodeo August

Grant City
Worth County R-III Alumni Reunion June
Rotary Golf Tournament June
4th of July Picnic Celebration July
Worth County Fair July/August
Glen Miller Days September
Craft Show at the High School November
Christmas on the Square December

Sheridan Alumni Reunion May
Old Defiance Days June

Worth School Reunion June


For more information call the Worth County Economic Developer at 660-564-3776.

This webpage is available in the form of a brochure, the brochure is a project of the Worth County Progress Organization Marketing/Tourism Committee.