Elk County
Howard, Kansas
Old bank in downtown Howard, Kansas
Founded: 1870
Population: 815
Elevation:  1040 feet
Latitude: 37°28' 13" N
Longitude: 96° 15' 48" W
ZIP code:  67349
Area Code: 620           
Downtown Howard, Kansas
Howard is the county seat of Elk [EK] County and is located near its center. The Elk river forms the southern boundary of Howard and Highway K-99 runs along the east side of town; Jerry Hubbell's amusing sculptures created from "junk" are displayed beside it. Between the highway and downtown there are many fine old homes in good shape and the Elk County courthouse, which was completed in 1908.

Downtown Howard has its old "Howard National Bank" building. Built in 1887, it is a beautiful but neglected example of the optimism of early Kansas citizens. The hardware store is a classic; I always go in and browse when I'm in town. The drugstore still has a soda fountain.

There is also a restored old one-room schoolhouse once located at Union Center in rural Elk county. The Benson Museum provides a look back into Elk County history.


Howard was named for General Oliver Otis Howard (1830-1909). The town became county seat of the new Elk county when Howard county was split into two counties, Elk and Chautauqua, on March 25, 1875.
The Special Collections of the Ablah Library at WSU contain historical images of Howard.

Special Events

Places to visit, things to do in Howard



Benson Museum: Open by appointment / (620) 374-2142
Consists of several buildings including:


Howard City Library / 126 S. Wabash / (620) 374-2890
Open 2:00 - 5:00 Monday - Friday, 9:00 - 12:00 Saturday

Places to eat in Howard

Toot's Drive-In in Howard, Kansas

Places to shop in Howard





Health Care


Explore Elk County or visit other Kansas Cities & Towns

Last updated on February 6, 2014 · towns@kslib.info
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