top of page



- LifeStyle -

Nevada/Vernon County MO…something for everyone!

Nevada was cited by 417 Magazine as a “Top Ten Best Community to Live” based on its green space amenities – “There is more dedicated space to recreate per capita in Nevada than almost any known MO community”. Whether you are an avid outdoors-man, historical enthusiast, insatiable shopper, or a newcomer to the area, come experience what Vernon County has to offer. If you are planning a short visit or looking for a place to call home, please take the time to experience our community.

radio springs park.jpg

Outdoor Enthusiast

Activities for any of the four seasons appeals to the outdoor enthusiast with the mild climate experienced in Vernon County. For the avid outdoorsman, the area offers hunting, fishing and trapping. Perhaps you prefer to capture your prey in its natural habitat through photography or bird watching. Vernon County has over 16 thousand acres of dedicated conservation land and we are just a few short minutes away from Bushwhacker and Stockton Lakes where skiing, scuba diving, sailing, walking trails, and camping abound.  If you prefer not to drive, Walton Lake, (north part of town) and Radio Springs Park, (south side) provide well-maintained walking trails for all ages. During the holiday season, Radio Springs is adorned with thousands of tiny lights making a walk to the gazebo seem almost magical.

Nevada Vernon County Parks & Fun

There’s not  better way to spend an afternoon than to plan a picnic in the park with your family and friends. Nevada has over 439 acres of city parks with a multitude of offerings. If you are looking for a round of golf, we have that. Our Frank E Peters Municipal Golf Course and Nevada Country Club ( private course) are just the ticket for the experienced traditional golfer as well as beginners. And don’t forget to check out our driving range!  If a more nontraditional game is what you have in mind, check out our Frisbee Disc Golf located at Marmaduke Park. What would be nicer than spending a day than at a reunion where a little healthy competition is welcomed?  Marmaduke Park is also the location of our state of the art shelter house that is totally climate controlled and our newly refurbished playground equipment, providing something for everyone.Spring Street Park specializes in playground equipment with toddlers in mind. An enclosed playground area is appealing to old and young alike. Tree shaded shelters provide the perfect setting for an outdoor birthday party. During those times when it isn’t feasible to be outside or even if you’re just looking for a change, don’t forget to check out our newly renovated Franklin P. Norman Community Center where you can participate in a hefty game of 3-on-3 basketball or perhaps volleyball in the two gyms. Meeting rooms are rented at a small fee and are host to a magnitude of activities ranging from baby showers, garage sales, square dancing, and business conferences. Nevada also offers a Skate Park, as well as Osage Prairie YMCA. Whether you’re looking for a place to get fit or activities for your kids the YMCA offers an indoor aquatic center, fitness center, racquetball, indoor walking/ jogging track and gymnasium.

If good ole outdoor fun is what you are looking for just north of Nevada is the McGennis Youth Center located on 160 acres with a 4.7 acre swimming and fishing lake with a sand beach.  Also, there is a barn with a meeting room and kitchen, restrooms and rustic camper cabins.  There are two large shelters with barbecue pits and several smaller picnic areas.

walton pool.jpg

Sports in Vernon County

Sports enthusiasts can find many offerings in the Nevada area. Champion Diamonds located just southeast of Nevada provides summer excitement by hosting championship youth baseball and softball tournaments. The Twin Lakes Sports Complex houses sports for all seasons including baseball, softball, soccer, and football. The Neptune’s Youth Swim team is an experience youngsters will never forget. Leagues form in the early spring and late summer months. No one should forget the Nevada Griffons. They are a favorite summer collegiate baseball team and a “must see” providing hours of summer entertainment. Maybe bowling or stock car racing is more your sport. We offer that in Nevada also. The bowling alley is sure to provide hours of family entertainment, or for the more competitive, league opportunities. Always dreamed of fast cars and racing? Nevada has a stock car dirt track where you can put that lead foot to use or be a spectator if you prefer.

Arts & Culture

Maybe outdoor entertainment is not your pleasure. Nevada is an arts-friendly community offering public performances, art shows, festivals, and concerts year round. If the acting bug has bitten, or you just want to see a good play, the Community Center for the Performing Arts has something for you. Don’t forget Cottey College as they offer world known performers for all those in the community to enjoy.  

arts collage.jpg
Arts & Culture
bushwhacker museum pic.jpg

Museum Resources

History buffs from all over the country will be enthralled with the rich historical presence in the Vernon County Area. Take a drive through our historic neighborhoods, or a tour of the Bushwhacker Museum and old jail. The Civil War was fought right here in this community and the museum offers insight on the impact between families and neighbors on the Kansas-Missouri border. Be sure to stop at the Public Library for more information on the border wars. Complete your historical tour by visiting the picturesque setting of Deepwood Cemetery where area pioneers and Civil War heroes have been laid to rest. You’ll never know what other opportunities await you until you experience the hometown feel of the Vernon County area.


Nevada…something for everyone!

Bushwhacker Museum Heritage Center
Bushwhacker Museum and Old Jail
Nevada Victorian Homes Driving Tour
Cottey College
Vernon County Courthouse and Nevada Square
W.F. Norman Corporation “Living Museum”
Osage Indian State Historic Site
Radio Springs Park
Historic Murals Project
Champion Baseball Diamonds
Nevada Speedway
Schell-Osage Wildlife Conservation Area

• Boating

• Stock Car Racing

• Community Theatre

• College Sports

• Baseball

• Frisbee Golf

• Swimming Indoor/Outdoor

• Skate Park

• Wildlife Photography

• Bird Watching

• Shopping

• Camping

 Griffons Baseball
Isaac Walton Pool and Recreational Area
Cottey College’s Center for the Performing Arts
Frank E. Peters Municipal Golf Course
Four Rivers Conservation Area
Prairie State Park
Stockton Lake
Nevada Country Club
PEO Foundation Art Gallery
Bushwhacker Lake Conservation Area
Deepwood Cemetary (resting place of Vernon County founders and Alice Cottey)
Fox Playhouse Theater

• Hunting & Trapping
• Fishing
• Golf
• Biking
• Parks
• Conservation Areas
• Community Festivals
• Prairies
• Bingo Halls
• Baseball Museum
• Movies
• Bowling

Something For Everyone
champion diamones.gif
Area Businesses

- Area Information -

Aerial view Nevada with distances - more

Camp Clark

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Marketing Executive

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It’s easy. Just click “Edit Text” or double click me.

Cottey College

cottey college sign.jpg

Cottey College

1000 W. Austin

Nevada, MO 64772 Switchboard: 417-667-8181 Admission:

Local Media

  • Facebook
  • Twitter

Marketing Executive

I'm a paragraph. Click here to add your own text and edit me. It’s easy. Just click “Edit Text” or double click me.

Camp Clark
Local Media


old house #1.jpg
old house #2.jpg
old house #3.jpg

Nevada, MO has everything you might want in a home.  A young family will find room to grow in the craftsman bungalow, while a retired couple could be more inclined to purchase one of the Nevada brick ranch homes.  Many of the streets are lined with historic homes.

If time permits, a drive North of Austin/HWY 54 on Washington and South of Austin on Main will showcase some of these homes that are over 100 years old.  Cottey College Campus is surrounded on all sides by stately homes.  Nevada even has a section of town on Cherry east of the square that showcases our own “painted ladies.”  Painted ladies describe the vibrant colors on this section of refurbished and renovated historic business facades.

Nevada Area Rental Property Landlord List 

Marble Surface

Restaurants & Area Dining

Nevada/Vernon County has over 30 restaurants to tickle your taste buds. You can choose from a variety of fast food restaurants, to a 1950’s style diner that has been in Nevada for over 70 years that has received national accolades. Nevada offers family dining in an assortment of diners, delis, cafes and restaurants all offering delicious home cooking from breakfast to dinner.  The Nevada/Vernon County area also provides international cuisine choices including Chinese and Mexican, BBQ, steakhouses and burgers are also readily available. Vernon County is also home to a unique dining experience rarely found in a small community.  In a rural, rustic setting, you can enjoy a 5 star dining experience that features a 5-course meal. We have it all!

Buzz's BBQ & Steakhouse

Buzz's BBQ & Steakhouse

2500 E. Austin Blvd.


Emery's Truckstop

Emery's Truckstop

7490 E Highway 54

417 966-7332

The Fix Nevada

The Fix Nevada

225 S Johnson Dr
Nevada MO 64772


Casa Azteca

Casa Azteca

903 E. Subway Boulevard
Nevada, MO 64772


Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

305 S. Johnson Drive
Nevada, MO 64772


Domino's Pizza

Domino's Pizza

200 S Adams


Precision Coffee Company

Precision Coffee Company

127 East Cherry Street


Area Dining
Marble Surface


Located at the intersection of US Highways 54 and 71 Nevada is conveniently located between Kansas City and Joplin. Travelers will find lodging accommodations to meet all their needs. From RV travelers, campers, or to those looking for an upscale suite, Nevada has it all! There are amenities such as indoor and outdoor pools, in-suite kitchens, fireplaces, and Jacuzzis to choose from. Nevada has everything you need to relax and enjoy your visit.

From Rustic to elegant, you will find it in Nevada and Vernon County!

Country Inn & Suites

Country Inn & Suites

PO Box P


Osage Prairie RV Park

Osage Prairie RV Park

1501 North Osage Boulevard


Dueling Silos Vintage Guest House & Rustic Event Venue

Dueling Silos Vintage Guest House & Rustic Event Venue

201 S First Street
Sheldon MO 64784


Holiday Inn Express & Suites

Holiday Inn Express & Suites

311 S Johnson Drive


Marble Surface


Those words imply connections, traditions, and longevity.  Nevada’s Circle of Community centers on the historic County Courthouse.  The businesses facing the County Courthouse square provide a multitude of merchandise and services including new books, sparkling jewelry, tasteful home furnishingsfloral displays, footwear for the family, and clothing both new and recycled. Enjoy a stroll around the square, browse the shops, eat at one of our wonderful restaurants and view the architecture. There are an abundant variety of services, stores and unique restaurants for you to enjoy in and around the community.  Enjoy Nevada’s circle of community and help it to continue and strengthen.

The Circle of Community in the County is just as diverse. From the Amish General Store with homegrown and hand-made specialties to the Boot Store with thousands of pairs to choose from to the locally owned Farm and Home stores, Vernon County can provide a shopper with just about anything they are looking for! Slow down, look around and you will see all you need and something you may not have known about.

National TV Sales & Rental
400 S Johnson Ste F // 432 E Austin
417-667-3400 // 417-448-1700
Verco Apparel
112 North Cedar Street Nevada, MO 64772
Thorpe's Appliance & Repair
216 W. Cherry
2250 Lincoln Avenue
Ray's Trophies
PO Box 126
Rinehart Jewelry
120 S. Cedar
Second Edition Shoppe
616 E Walnut Street
Kitchen Essentials
131 E Walnut
May's Floral
505 E. Cherry
54 Feed & Seed, LLC
2202 W. Austin Boulevard
Belles and Beaus
616 E Walnut Street
417-667-5759 / 417-667-4166

- Community Information -

Community Infomation
2023 Department Photo.jpg

Public Safety

(Residents tab, Public Safety)

Police              Fire                Sheriff                    Ambulance

Public Safety
Econ Dev
City Gov
Heath & Well-Being

Health & Well-Being

healthy nevada logo.png

212 W Walnut St, Ste B, Nevada, MO, 64772

(417) 283-4575

Click to learn more....

NRMC front profile.jpg

800 S Ash St, Nevada, MO 64772, United States



Civic Organizations

  • AAUW, Phyllis Sprenkle, 2950 S. 1850 Road, Sheldon, MO 64784 | 417-884-5103

  • Aerie Fraternal Order of Eagles #3770, David McGee, 2213 E. Austin Blvd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-9283

  • Alpha Delta Kapp, 1615 W. 92nd. St., Kansas City, MO 64114 | 800-247-2311

  • American Cancer Society, 2926 E Battlefield St., Springfield, MO 65804 | 417-881-4668

  • American Legion, 402 E Cherry, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-9836

  • Athenas, Jean McQueen, 327 S Cedar, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-8053

  • MOKan Eagles Park/Bar H Boys, Marc Lusk, 11357 E Nebo HIll Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-321-4222

  • Beta Sigma Phi (EtaTheta), Deb Metcalf, 18531 S. BB Hwy., Nevada, MO 64772

  • Beta Sigma Phi (GammaMu), Debbie Metcalf, 18640 S 1200 Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-9720

  • Beta Sigma Phi (Laureate), Virginia Marquardt, 15821 S 1375 Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-6786

  • Beta Sigma Phi (Preceptor), Sondra Woody, 16570 S 1700 Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-549-9900

  • Birth Right, 231 N Cedar, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-1771

  • Boy Scout Troop #42, 500 S College, Nevada, MO 64772 |417-667-5435

  • Boy Scout Troop #480, Berry Gertsen, 1233 N. Cedar, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7781

  • Bushwhacker Quilt Guild, Becky Bruce or Erica S., 129 E Walnut, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-1909 – 417-667-7100

  • Cancer Support Group, Stacy Wilson, 428 E Highland, Nevada, MO 64772

  • Caring People, Lisa Cook, 301 E Highland, Nevada, MO 64772 | 573-825-2869

  • CCPA, Julie Tietz, PO Box 754, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-549-6014

  • Children’s Miracle Network, 2250 Lincoln Ave., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3636 x 190

  • Community Outreach, Barbara Long, 229 N Cedar, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-4339

  • Cottey College Campus Activities, Kris Korb, 1000 W Austin, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-6333

  • DAR Elizabeth Cary, Linda Mitchell or Heather Brown | 417-398-2022 or 417-876-8563

  • Dianas (MFWC), Louise Lunkenheimer or Laura Diggins, 904 W Pitcher, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-5661 or 417-944-2761

  • Ducks Unlimited, PO Box 527, Nevada, MO 64772

  • Eastern Star, Alberta Hays, PO Box 35, Walker, MO 64790 | 417-667-1521

  • Elks Lodge BPO #564, Byron Williams, 510  Centennial, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-661-1482

  • Geneological Society Vernon/Cedar,, 218 W. Walnut, Nevada, MO 64772

  • Girl em-POWERment Club, Kim Greer, 900 N Olive, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2040

  • Girl Scouts of Nevada, Cindy Dye, 210 N Centennial, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-7064

  • Griffons Baseball, Jeff Post | 417-667-6159

  • Habitat for Humanity, Bob Beaver, PO Box 170, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-684-2666

  • Healthy Nevada, 212 W Walnut St., Suite B, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-283-3100

  • Historical Society, Will Tollerton, 212 W. Walnut, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-9602

  • Hospital Auxiliary, Dave Killmer, 800 S Ash, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3355

  • Knights of Columbus (evenings), Steve Eilertson, 201 Crestview Dr., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3399

  • Laurels (MFWC), Sue Ann Heumader, 1514 W Walnut, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7239

  • Masonic Lodge #303, David Grubb, 16315 S 1354 Pass, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-7649

  • Master Gardeners (Four Seasons), Frankie Davis, 402 S Spring, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-8380

  • McGennis Youth Center, 3181 State Hwy WW, Rich Hill, MO 64779 | 417-484-3216

  • Ministerial Alliance, Vernon County, Stee Russ, 301 E Highland, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-321-0471

  • Missouri Cattlemen Fund, Cole Abele | 417-876-0033

  • MOPS Mothers of Preschoolers, Brooke Wilson, 301 E Highland, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-9706

  • MO-KAN Square Dancers, Tom & Grace Harold, 18026 S 2200 Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-465-2241

  • Moss House, Martha Sander, 415 N Main, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3733 or 800-398-4271

  • Muscular Dystrophy Assc., Lacey Washburn, 825 S Rangeline Suite B, Joplin, MO 64804 | 417-623-1249

  • Natl Active of Ret Fed Empl Assc., Rudy Spann, PO Box 536, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-549-9958

  • Nevada Amateur Radio, Carl Pokorny, PO Box 567, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-2112

  • Nevada Elks Youth Activities, 510 N Centennial, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7571

  • Nevada Group Alcoholics Anonymous, 301 S PIne St., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-5889

  • Nevada Head Start, 1025 E Wooter, Nevada, MO | 417-667-5393

  • Nevada Lions Club, Rudy Spann, 904 N Washington, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-549-9958

  • NRMC Foundation, Judith Herstein, 800 South Ash, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-3609

  • Nevada Senior Center, Rudi Stephenson, 301 N Main, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-5847

  • NYRBaseball, Carol Palmer, PO Box 601, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-5844

  • PEO Chapter KK, Judi Steege, 318 Hillcrest Dr., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7156

  • PTO (Benton), 500 E Vernon, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2070

  • PTO (Bryon), 400 W Lee, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2060

  • PTO (Truman), 901 W Ashland, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2080

  • Red Cross, 201 E Cherry St., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-832-9500 x 3101

  • Relay for Life, Vernon County, 100 E Cherry, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-622-9828

  • Republican Committee VC, Barbara York, 127 C E Austin Blvd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-484-9484

  • Research Club, Donna Logan, 912 Briarwood Lane, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-4988

  • Rotary Club of Nevada, Jennifer Gundy, 428 E Highland, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7007

  • Salvation Army, 229 N Cedar, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-4339

  • Shrine Club of Nevada, Larry Brown, PO Box 29, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3120

  • Soroptimist International, Linda Barnes, 319 W Austin, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-7990

  • Thalias (MFWC) (The’ll Ya’s), Patsy McCullough, 15150 E Quaker Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3805

  • The Neighbors Center, Jay Mayfield, 329 E Walnut, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-3990

  • United Way of Vernon County, Peggy Tedlock, 201 E Cherry, Suite 203, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-5563

  • University MO Extension, Pat Miller, 100 W Cherry, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2560

  • Perferred Community Services, 111 N Elm, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-2233

  • Vernon County Cancer Relief | 417-321-9514

  • Vernon County Arts Council, Andrew McNair, 104 E Cherry, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-1707

  • Vernon County 4-H Clubs, Pat Miller, VC Courthouse, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-2560

  • Vernon County Democrats | 417-667-2427

  • Vernon County People for Pets, PO Box 383, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-448-9799

  • Vernon County Youth Task Force, Tricia E. Bridgewater, 300 W Cherry, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-549-0572

  • VFW Ladies Auxillary, Pat McClellan | 417-667-5051

  • VFW POst #2175, Ralph V. Bobbett, 13210 E Minie Ball Rd., Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-5051

  • Vietnam Veterans of America, Victor Hinds or Larry Selby | 417-922-3235 or 417-321-0568

  • Women’s Leadership Council, Michelle Covey, 319 W Austin, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-667-4550

  • Youth Fair Vernon County, Nathan Forkner, PO Box 133, Nevada, MO 64772 | 417-684-7810

Civic Organizations
Historic Attractions

- Historic Attractions -

historic nevada state hosp 1.jpg
historic bushwacker.jpg

Original Bushwhacker Museum

212 West Walnut
Located in the lower level of the Nevada Public Library, the museum houses many fine historical exhibits, including a replica of the Dr. J.T. Hornback house. Museum Open Wednesday thru Saturday, May 1st-October 31st 10-4p.m.

(417) 667-9602

historic jail.jpg

Old Jail

231 North Main

Completed in its present form in 1871, the native sandstone building served as a jail until 1960! Authentically restored 19th-century jail and Deputy’s living quarters.

(417) 667-9602

historic norman sheetmetal.jpg

W.F. Norman Corp

220 North Cedar

Founded in 1898, the only remaining manufacturer of metal ceilings, a “museum in operation”. Tours upon request.

(417) 667-5552

historic park.jpg

Radio Springs Park

1100 S College St

Located at the end of College Street, view and enjoy the popular resort of the late 1800s. Water from the springs was known for its “health-giving” qualities.


cottey college sign.jpg

Cottey College

1000 W. Austin Blvd

A women’s college, owned by the PEO Sisterhood. Founded in 1884, a fine liberal arts campus.

(417) 667-8181

historic murals.jpg

Murals & More Murals!

Historic murals embrace the walls of our City-County Community Center, 200 N. Ash as well as the City Council Chambers, 120 S. Ash, depicting local history. Check out the South wall of Heroes Restaurant building on the Square for The Lone Osage and The Depot, Drink Coca Cola, and The Hotel Mitchell along Cherry Street.

Vernon County Courthouse

Center Square

Built in 1908 of Carthage limestone, its style is Romansque Revival. Listed on the National Historic Register.


historic deepwood.jpeg

Deepwood Cemetary

S. Washington Street

Founded in 1868, this is the resting place of most of Nevada’s pioneers; Sen.Wm Joel Stone, Sen. S.A. Wight, and Virginia Alice Cottey Stockard. There’s also a special plot for Civil War veterans.

old house #3.jpg

Nevada Victorian Tour

A historical driving tour of homes and landmarks with brochures and audio tapes available through the Chamber of Commerce

(417) 667-5300

early Nevada square.jpg
Chief Pawhauska.jpg

Chief Pawhuska

Jesse james.jpg

           Jesse James

               Frank James   

Frank James.jpg
post office.jpg

Post Office

early Nevada square.jpg

History of Nevada/Vernon County

Nevada, Missouri was founded in 1855. It was originally called “Nevada City”. The name was chosen by DeWitt Hunter in honor of his time spent in Nevada City, CA during the Gold Rush. The new town and county seat was located on territory once possessed by the Osage Tribe under the leadership of their famous Chief Pawhuska, also known as “White Hair”. The settlement was situated in almost the exact center of the newly created Vernon County.

early Nevada square.jpg

After the outbreak of the Civil War, Nevada City became known as the capital for “Bushwhackers”, a term used to identify pro-Southern guerrillas. The 7th Cavalry flag of the 8th Division of the Missouri State Guard (pro-Confederate) was raised at Nevada in 1861. According to report, Vernon County sent more men to the Southern armies than any other in Missouri, proportional to its’ population.

As a center for guerrilla warfare in Southwest Missouri, Nevada became the target of Pro-Union Militia. On May 23, 1863, a company of Federal Militia from Cedar and St. Clair counties arrived in Nevada City to exact retribution for a recent ambush by local Bushwhackers.

The Union Soldiers gave local residents 20 minutes to rescue their belongings before setting fire to the town. Almost all of the public, commercial, and residential buildings were destroyed in the incident. Only a few structures were spared the torch, one of them being the old Vernon County Jail (now part of the Bushwhacker Museum).

Nevada City was rebuilt after the war’s end in 1865, with the name being officially changed to Nevada in 1869. Law and order, however, did not return immediately to Vernon County when the shooting ceased. The murder of Sheriff Joseph Bailey in 1867 was but one unfortunate incident in the aftermath of the war. Infamous Missouri outlaws, Frank and Jesse James, were known to have a hideout in Vernon County.

Jesse James

Following the death of his brother Jesse in 1884, Frank James moved to Nevada to live for five years in a house which still stands to this day.

Continued Growth

Nevada experienced much growth in the latter decades of the nineteenth century. The first railroad, the Missouri-Kansas-Texas (Katy) arrived in 1870, with the Missouri Pacific soon to follow in 1881. Another boom to the economy came with the construction of State Mental Hospital No. 3 in 1887, which eventually employed about 1,100 local residents.

The remarkable Weltmer School of Magnetic Healing opened in 1897, using such methods as philosophy and hypnotism to remedy disease before its closure in the 1920s.


Cottey College, founded by Miss Virginia Alice Cottey in 1884, continues to the present as a prominent educational institution for women under the auspices of the P.E.O sisterhood.


With Nevada’s prosperity, came new building projects. In 1888, a group of local businessmen purchased land which would eventually become Radio Springs Park; famous for its artesian well-fed lake and picturesque white gazebo. A first-class post office was opened in 1910 to accommodate the vast amount of mail being received by the Weltmer Institute.

The Carnegie Building, built in 1917, once housed Nevada’s Public Library and is now home to the Nevada/ Vernon County Chamber of Commerce. The Carnegie Building is owned by Greg Hoffman, of Hoffman Financial Resources.  The cornerstone for the now iconic Vernon County courthouse was laid in 1906 and still stands as proudly today as it did a century ago.

Nevada continues to serve as a regional hub of government, recreation, and industry. The W.F. Norman Corporation, which opened for business in 1898, remains as the only manufacturer of metal ceilings left in the United States. After the heyday of railroads passed, new businesses such as 3M came to Nevada to revive the local economy with manufacturing. As a bustling town well away from the concerns of metropolitan areas, Nevada is well-positioned for future growth as an economical and safe community to retire or raise a family.

Famous/infamous people from Nevada and Vernon County include: John Brown, John Huston, and Alice Ghostly

State Hospital.jpg

State Hospital

early Nevada square.jpg
Bushwhackers & Jayhawkers fighting.jpg

MO Bushwhackers & KS Jayhawks

Virginia Alice Cottey.jpg

Virginia Alice Cottey

carnegie bldg.jpg

Carneige Building

History of Vernon County
bottom of page