Alta Township was secured from McPherson County. Each township in the new Harvey County received its name for a reason. Alta is one of four townships with a name chosen to honor or memorialize an individual. Alta was the name of the deceased daughter* of Judge R.W.P. Muse, an early settler and prominent figure in the establishment of Harvey County. Located in Alta Twp was the now non-existent settlement of Alta and the site of Alta Mill. In the early years, a post office called Valentine served the community from a small office in the Alta Mill. Later, the post office’s name was changed to Alta. Alta and Garden Townships were originally settled by several French and Irish families who homesteaded on the Little Arkansas River and at the mouth of Turkey Creek in the fall of 1869 or the spring of 1870. *Note: Alta Olivia Muse was born 17 Aug 1847 in Ohio. She graduated from high school in 1866, married Josiah Sinclair of Pittsburgh, PA in 1869 and, at the age of twenty three, died in February of 1871 after a few months of failing health. Alta’s father, Judge R.W.P. Muse, arrived at the townsite for Newton in May of 1871 with the objective of opening a land office. When Harvey County was created in 1872, the memory of Alta and her death would have been fresh in Judge Muse’s mind. As a result, it seems only natural that he’d name something after her. Image from Edward’s Map of 1882.