Hardtner was established in1886 on land that had been owned by Dr. Hardtner. Few towns owe as much to one man as Hardtner owes to its founder, Jacob Achenbach, who donated land for the park, hospital and fairgrounds. In 1908, Archenbach decided to build a railroad connecting Hardtner to Kiowa. Santa Fe objected to the new railroad crossing its mainline. The Santa Fe superintendent parked his private car on the crossing site, but a local group of forty armed cowboys convinced him to move.