Hardtner is about 10 miles west of Kiowa. U.S.-281 runs through town, turning south here into Oklahoma. Hardtner was established in1886 on land that had been owned by Dr. Hardtner. The town had a two-story hardware store (the upper floor was used for local meetings), a creamery, an ice plant, hotels, and cafes.
By 1908 the townspeople had realized that they would need a railroad line to the outside world in order to survive. The town's founder Jacob Achenbach, helped set up a company to build a line east to Kiowa. The line would have to cross the Santa Fe's tracks to link with the Missouri Pacific, the planned connection for Hardtner's line. The Santa Fe's Superintendent was not about to stand for that, so he had his private car block the spot where the lines would cross. A local got word to him that the Hardtner people had about 45 cowboys ready to "riddle his car with bullets" The Superintendent moved his car, and the line was completed.
Today Hardtner has a cafe, motel, grocery store, a few craft & specialty stores and South Barber Middle School.
Achenbach Memorial Park; four blocks north of Central on Main Street. Established by town founder Jacob Achenbach, this is not a typical small-town park. It has the distinction of having a mural of a mountain scene on the outside of the restroom As a leaping off point for the gyp hills you can find many rock formations and the Merrihew Bat Caves. Hunting and Fishing are good in this area.
PLACES TO EAT
Yur Place: Central & Cherokee Sts; 296-4477. Open daily from 5:00 AM to 8:00 PM. This is a cafe, convenience, and video store all in one. It serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, has daily specials, and makes homemade, cakes, pies, and rolls. Yur place also has a catering service, and they operate a private dining room in a barn outside of town.
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