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Howell County, Missouri
Howell County MO Courthouse 20151021-023.jpg
Howell County Courthouse in West Plains
Map of Missouri highlighting Howell County
Location in the state of Missouri
Map of the U.S. highlighting Missouri
Missouri's location in the U.S.
Founded March 2, 1857
Named for Josiah Howell, pioneer settler
Seat West Plains
Largest city West Plains
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

928 sq mi (2,404 km²)
927 sq mi (2,401 km²)
1.1 sq mi (3 km²), 0.1
Population
 - (2020)
 - Density

39,750
Congressional district 8th
Time zone Central: UTC-6/-5
Website www.howellcounty.net

Howell County is a county located in the southern portion of Missouri. As of the 2020 census, the population was 39,750.[1] The largest city and county seat is West Plains.[2] The county was officially organized on March 2, 1851, and is named after Josiah Howell, a pioneer settler in the Howell Valley.

Howell County comprises the West Plains, MO Micropolitan Statistical Area.

History[]

Howell County was organized on March 2, 1857, from Oregon County, and is named for Josiah Howell, who made the first settlement in Howell Valley.

The first Circuit Court met in a log cabin one mile east of West Plains, according to an 1876 account. A small, wooden courthouse was built on the square in West Plains in 1859. It was damaged during the Civil War in 1862. The county was reorganized three years later, but all of the county records were destroyed in an 1866 fire. A second courthouse was built in West Plains in 1869. It was a small, three-room, frame building, about 24 by 30 feet.

Geography[]

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 928 square miles (2,400 km2), of which 927 square miles (2,400 km2) is land and 1.1 square miles (2.8 km2) (0.1%) is water.[3] It is the third-largest county in Missouri by land area and fourth-largest by total area.

Adjacent counties[]

Major highways[]

  • US 60.svg U.S. Route 60
  • US 63.svg U.S. Route 63
  • US 160.svg U.S. Route 160
  • MO-14.svg Route 14
  • MO-17.svg Route 17
  • MO-76.svg Route 76
  • MO-142.svg Route 142

National protected area[]

  • Mark Twain National Forest (part)

Demographics[]

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1860 3,169
1870 4,218 33.1%
1880 8,814 109.0%
1890 18,618 111.2%
1900 21,834 17.3%
1910 21,065 −3.5%
1920 21,102 0.2%
1930 19,672 −6.8%
1940 22,270 13.2%
1950 22,725 2.0%
1960 22,027 −3.1%
1970 23,521 6.8%
1980 28,807 22.5%
1990 31,447 9.2%
2000 37,238 18.4%
2010 40,400 8.5%
U.S. Decennial Census[4]
1790-1960[5] 1900-1990[6]
1990-2000[7] 2010-2020[1]

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 37,238 people, 14,762 households, and 10,613 families residing in the county. The population density was 40 people per square mile (16/km2). There were 16,340 housing units at an average density of 18 per square mile (7/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 96.41% White, 0.31% Black or African American, 0.97% Native American, 0.36% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 0.28% from other races, and 1.63% from two or more races. Approximately 1.21% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. Among the major first ancestries reported in Howell County were 28.3% American, 16.4% German, 12.2% Irish, and 12.1% English.

There were 14,762 households, out of which 32.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.8% were married couples living together, 9.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.10% were non-families. 25.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 12.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the county, the population consisted of 26.0% under the age of 18, 7.8% from 18 to 24, 26.2% from 25 to 44, 23.30% from 45 to 64, and 16.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 93.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.5 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $31,761, and the median income for a family was $38,047. Males had a median income of $22,960 versus $16,968 for females. The per capita income for the county was $17,184. About 14.00% of families and 18.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 26.3% of those under age 18 and 14.0% of those age 65 or over.

Religion[]

According to the Association of Religion Data Archives County Membership Report (2000), Howell County is a part of the Bible Belt with evangelical Protestantism being the majority religion. The most predominant denominations among residents in Howell County who adhere to a religion are Southern Baptists (47.70%), Churches of Christ (8.81%), and Roman Catholics (6.99%).

Education[]

Of adults 25 years of age and older in Howell County, 73.4% possesses a high school diploma or higher while 10.9% holds a bachelor's degree or higher as their highest educational attainment.

Public schools[]

Private schools[]

Alternative and vocational schools[]

  • Ozark Horizon State School - West Plains - (K-12) - A school for handicapped students and those with other special needs.
  • South Central Career Center - West Plains - (09-12) - Vocational/technical

Colleges and universities[]

Public libraries[]

  • Mountain View Public Library[9]
  • West Plains Public Library[10]
  • Willow Springs Public Library[11]

Politics[]

Template:Outdated

Local[]

Howell County, Missouri
Elected countywide officials
Assessor Daniel Franks Republican
Circuit Clerk Cindy Weeks Republican
County Clerk Dennis K. Von Allmen Republican
Collector Larry Spence Republican
Commissioner
(Presiding)
Mark B. Collins Republican
Commissioner
(District 1)
Bill Lovelace Republican
Commissioner
(District 2)
Billy D. Sexton Republican
Coroner James T. "Tim" Cherry Republican
Prosecuting Attorney Michael P. Hutchings Republican
Public Administrator Charm L. Eagleman Republican
Recorder Sharon Trowbridge Republican
Sheriff James M. "Mike" Shannon Republican
Surveyor Ralph Riggs Republican
Treasurer Ernestine Doss Republican

The Republican Party predominantly controls politics at the local level in Howell County. Republicans hold all elected positions in the county. District 2 (Southern) Commissioner Billy Sexton took office as a Democrat but announced in 2014 he was changing parties and sought re-election as a Republican.[12]

State[]

Past Gubernatorial Elections Results
Year Republican Democratic Third Parties
2016 70.65% 12,266 25.68% 4,459 3.67% 637
2012 54.23% 8,849 42.59% 6,950 3.19% 520
2008 45.33% 7,659 52.11% 8,804 2.56% 432
2004 64.89% 10,595 33.48% 5,466 1.63% 267
2000 53.51% 7,537 44.77% 6,306 1.72% 242
1996 51.71% 7,030 44.78% 6,087 3.51% 477
1992 48.26% 6,401 51.74% 6,862 0.00% 0
1988 71.70% 8,321 27.69% 3,214 0.61% 71
1984 70.90% 8,476 29.10% 3,479 0.00% 0
1980 59.53% 6,956 40.32% 4,711 0.15% 18
1976 57.07% 5,673 42.77% 4,251 0.16% 16
1972 61.53% 6,296 38.40% 3,929 0.07% 7
1968 48.33% 4,605 51.67% 4,923 0.00% 0
1964 47.58% 4,453 52.42% 4,905 0.00% 0
1960 64.55% 6,166 35.45% 3,386 0.00% 0

In the Missouri House of Representatives, Howell County is divided into two legislative districts, both of which are represented by Republicans.

  • District 154 — Shawn Rhoads (R-West Plains. Consists of most of the entire county.
Missouri House of Representatives — Missouri House of Representatives — District 154 — Howell County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Shaun Rhoads 11,563 74.93% -25.07
Independent Terry Hampton 3,868 25.07% +25.07
Missouri House of Representatives — District 154 — Howell County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Shaun Rhoads 5,933 100.00% +31.47
Missouri House of Representatives — District 154 — Howell County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Shaun Rhoads 9,950 68.53%
Democratic R.A. Pendergrass 4,570 31.47%
  • District 142 — Robert Ross (R-Yukon). Consists of the city of Mountain View.
Missouri House of Representatives — District 142 — Howell County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Robert Ross 1,196 82.43% -17.57
Democratic Bobby Johnston, Jr. 255 17.57% +17.57
Missouri House of Representatives — District 142 — Howell County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Robert Ross 589 100.00%
Missouri House of Representatives — District 142 — Howell County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Robert Ross 1,173 100.00%

All of Howell County is a part of Missouri's 33rd District in the Missouri Senate and is currently represented by Mike Cunningham of Rogersville.

Missouri Senate — District 33 — Howell County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Mike Cunningham 14,995 100.00%
Missouri Senate — District 33 — Howell County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Mike Cunningham 13,700 100.00%

Federal[]

Missouri's two U.S. Senators are Claire McCaskill of Kirkwood and Roy Blunt of Strafford.

U.S. Senate — Missouri — Howell County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Roy Blunt 12,070 69.61% +18.26
Democratic Jason Kander 4,375 25.23% -15.97
Libertarian Jonathan Dine 433 2.50% -4.95
Green Johnathan McFarland 218 1.26% +1.26
Constitution Fred Ryman 243 1.40% +1.40
U.S. Senate — Missouri — Howell County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Todd Akin 8,340 51.35%
Democratic Claire McCaskill 6,692 41.20%
Libertarian Jonathan Dine 1,210 7.45%

All of Howell County is included in Missouri's 8th Congressional District and is currently represented by Jason T. Smith of Salem in the U.S. House of Representatives. Smith won a special election on Tuesday, June 4, 2013, to complete the remaining term of former U.S. Representative Jo Ann Emerson of Cape Girardeau. Emerson announced her resignation a month after being reelected with over 70 percent of the vote in the district. She resigned to become CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative.

U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 8th Congressional District — Howell County (2016)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jason T. Smith 13,655 80.64% +19.51
Democratic Dave Cowell 2,776 16.38% +5.05
Libertarian Jonathan Shell 505 2.98% +1.45
U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 8th Congressional District — Howell County (2014)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jason T. Smith 4,742 61.13% -7.91
Democratic Barbara Stocker 879 11.33% -7.36
Libertarian Rick Vandeven 119 1.53% -0.39
Constitution Doug Enyart 163 2.10% -8.25
Independent Terry Hampton 1,854 23.90% +23.90
U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 8th Congressional District — Special Election — Howell County (2013)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jason T. Smith 2,268 69.04% -8.16
Democratic Steven Hodges 614 18.69% +0.75
Libertarian Bill Slantz 63 1.92% -2.94
Constitution Doug Enyart 340 10.35% +10.35
U.S. House of Representatives — Missouri's 8th Congressional District — Howell County (2012)
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Jo Ann Emerson 12,456 77.20%
Democratic Jack Rushin 2,895 17.94%
Libertarian Rick Vandeven 784 4.86%

Political culture[]

United States presidential election results for Howell County, Missouri[13]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 15,181 81.29% 3,218 17.23% 277 1.48%
2016 13,893 79.59% 2,881 16.51% 681 3.90%
2012 11,544 70.62% 4,395 26.89% 407 2.49%
2008 10,982 64.49% 5,736 33.68% 311 1.83%
2004 11,097 67.75% 5,118 31.25% 164 1.00%
2000 9,018 64.07% 4,641 32.97% 416 2.96%
1996 5,991 44.30% 5,261 38.90% 2,272 16.80%
1992 5,360 39.60% 5,492 40.57% 2,685 19.83%
1988 7,277 62.49% 4,324 37.13% 44 0.38%
1984 8,204 68.53% 3,767 31.47% 0 0.00%
1980 7,149 60.06% 4,472 37.57% 282 2.37%
1976 4,692 46.76% 5,265 52.47% 78 0.78%
1972 7,253 72.18% 2,795 27.82% 0 0.00%
1968 5,631 57.24% 2,763 28.08% 1,444 14.68%
1964 4,632 48.25% 4,968 51.75% 0 0.00%
1960 7,095 72.18% 2,734 27.82% 0 0.00%
1956 5,473 64.09% 3,066 35.91% 0 0.00%
1952 6,608 66.19% 3,349 33.55% 26 0.26%
1948 4,427 54.93% 3,599 44.65% 34 0.42%
1944 5,151 62.93% 3,020 36.90% 14 0.17%
1940 6,158 59.23% 4,218 40.57% 21 0.20%
1936 5,297 52.63% 4,725 46.95% 42 0.42%
1932 3,660 42.86% 4,775 55.91% 105 1.23%
1928 4,869 65.26% 2,543 34.08% 49 0.66%
1924 3,130 48.21% 2,681 41.29% 682 10.50%
1920 4,344 63.24% 2,323 33.82% 202 2.94%
1916 2,132 50.22% 1,861 43.84% 252 5.94%
1912 1,465 34.12% 1,565 36.45% 1,264 29.44%
1908 2,164 51.09% 1,827 43.13% 245 5.78%
1904 2,089 53.39% 1,605 41.02% 219 5.60%
1900 2,059 48.84% 1,975 46.85% 182 4.32%
1896 1,892 44.02% 2,373 55.21% 33 0.77%
1892 1,484 41.93% 1,642 46.40% 413 11.67%
1888 1,370 42.71% 1,506 46.95% 332 10.35%



Howell County is, like several rural counties located in the Ozarks, conservative and strongly Republican at the presidential level. Bill Clinton of neighboring Arkansas was the last Democratic presidential nominee to win Howell County in 1992; he lost the county during his 1996 reelection bid and since then, voters in Howell County have decisively backed Republicans. Controversy occurred during the course of the 2008 presidential campaign over a billboard displayed near West Plains that depicted a picture of then-Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama in a turban. Some were offended by the billboard and deemed it racist.[14]

Like most rural areas throughout Southeast Missouri, voters in Howell County generally adhere to socially and culturally conservative principles which tend to influence their Republican leanings. In 2004, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to define marriage as the union between a man and a woman—it overwhelmingly won in Howell County with 83.36 percent of the vote. The initiative passed the state with 71 percent of support from voters. In 2006, Missourians voted on a constitutional amendment to fund and legalize embryonic stem cell research in the state—it failed in Howell County with 57.97 percent voting against the measure. The initiative narrowly passed the state with 51 percent of support from voters as Missouri became one of the first states in the nation to approve embryonic stem cell research. Despite Howell County's longstanding tradition of supporting socially conservative platforms, voters in the county have a penchant for advancing populist causes like increasing the minimum wage. In 2006, Missourians voted on a proposition (Proposition B) to increase the minimum wage in the state to $6.50 an hour—it passed Howell County with 67.79 percent of the vote. The proposition strongly passed every single county in Missouri with 78.99 percent voting in favor. (During the same election, voters in five other states also strongly approved increases in the minimum wage.)

Missouri presidential preference primary (2008)[]

In the 2008 Missouri Presidential Primary, voters in Howell County from both political parties supported candidates who finished in second place in the state at large and nationally. Former Governor Mike Huckabee (R-Arkansas) received more votes, a total of 2,882, than any candidate from either party in Howell County during the 2008 Missouri Presidential Preference Primary.

Communities[]

Cities[]

  • Brandsville
  • Mountain View
  • West Plains (county seat)
  • Willow Springs

Census-designated places[]

  • Pomona
  • South Fork

Other unincorporated places[]

  • Amy
  • Arditta
  • Burnham
  • Caulfield
  • Chapel
  • Chapin
  • China
  • Cottbus
  • Crider
  • Cull
  • Cureall
  • Egypt Grove
  • Fanchon
  • Frankville
  • Fruitville
  • Grimmet
  • Horton
  • Hocomo
  • Hutton Valley
  • Lanton
  • Lebo
  • Leota
  • Moody
  • Olden
  • Peace Valley
  • Pottersville
  • Siloam Springs
  • Sterling
  • Trask

Townships[]

  • Benton
  • Chapel
  • Dry Creek
  • Goldsberry
  • Howell
  • Hutton Valley
  • Myatt
  • Siloam Springs
  • Sisson
  • South Fork
  • Spring Creek
  • Willow Springs

See also[]

  • National Register of Historic Places listings in Howell County, Missouri

References[]

  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/29/29091.html. 
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. http://www.naco.org/Counties/Pages/FindACounty.aspx. 
  3. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. https://www.census.gov/geo/maps-data/data/docs/gazetteer/counties_list_29.txt. 
  4. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/programs-surveys/decennial-census.html. 
  5. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. http://mapserver.lib.virginia.edu. 
  6. ^ "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/cencounts/mo190090.txt. 
  7. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov/population/www/cen2000/briefs/phc-t4/tables/tab02.pdf. 
  8. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. https://www.census.gov. 
  9. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "Mountain View Public Library". Libraries.org. https://librarytechnology.org/library/20171. 
  10. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "West Plains Public Library". Libraries.org. https://librarytechnology.org/library/20347. 
  11. ^ Breeding, Marshall. "Willow Springs Public Library". Libraries.org. https://librarytechnology.org/library/20346. 
  12. ^ "Changing political party affiliation" (in en). West Plains Daily Quill. https://www.westplainsdailyquill.net/opinion/letters_to_editor/article_10f86f40-5949-11e4-bb64-0017a43b2370.html. 
  13. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". http://uselectionatlas.org/RESULTS. 
  14. ^ The Washington Post, Retrieved July 27, 2013.

External links[]

Coordinates: 36°46′N 91°53′W / 36.77, -91.89

This page uses content from the English language Wikipedia. The original content was at Howell County, Missouri. The list of authors can be seen in the page history. As with this Familypedia wiki, the content of Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons License.
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