Seat of justice for Stone County, Galena lies 1,016 feet above sea level on the James River in whose beautiful, crystal waters the explorer H. R. Schoolcraft reported seeing lumps of galena on his 1818-19 trip in the Ozarks. First known as Jamestown, the town was originally settled in the 1830's to the south. After the county, named for the pioneer Judge W. T. Stone, was organized, 1851, the present location and name were adopted.
Stone County lies in the oldest mountain region in the U.S. In 7000 B.C., prehistoric Ozark Bluff Dweller Indians were living in the area. In modern times the county was part of the territory claimed by the Osage until 1808. Delaware Indians, between their land cession in Cape Girardeau County, 1818, and their final Missouri land cession, 1929, lived along the James River.
This excerpt comes from the monument erected by the State Historical Society of Missouri and State Highway Commission, 1957.