This Harvey County town started in a different location with a different name and is home to one of 2 colleges in Harvey County.
The community of Elivon was abandoned in favor of a site 3 miles south when the Missouri Pacific Railroad laid tracks. The new town of Hesston was named for an early settler A.L. Hess.
The Mennonite Church choose Hesston as the site for their “school in the West.” Hesston Academy later became Hesston College, a two year liberal arts college. In 2009, the school celebrated a century of educating young people.
Hesston incorporated as a 3rd class city.
Hesston Corporation was established by Adin Holdeman, Elmer Berner, and Lyle Yost. By 1955, “the Corp” was a leading manufacturer of hay implements. Bought by AGCO in the 1990s, the company remains an important employer in Harvey County.
Showalter Villa Retirement Center opens.
Excel Industries began producing cabs for combines and later focused production efforts on the “Hustler Mower.”
Hesston Unified School District #460 established and a high school was constructed at 100 N. Ridge Road. Today, this building is the Middle School. The current high school was constructed in 1970.
Dyck Arboretum of the Plains established.
March 13, 1990 a F-5 tornado tore through the center of town.