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Named for the genus Viburnum, otherwise known as the black haw and arrowhead, the city of Viburnum, Missouri is in Iron County. Prior to the arrival of European-Americans in the 1830s, the area was occupied by the Osage Indians. By 1837, a community of settlers, mostly from Kentucky and Tennessee, had settled there. Before the Civil War, iron mining was large in the area, and Iron County was formed in 1857. Lead was discovered in the 1870s. Timber was also a commodity, as the area provided wood for railroad ties. Still, by 1889, there were only twelve people living in Viburnum, which had not yet been organized as a town. Lead ore was discovered in 1955, and the St. Joe Company began developing the ore in 1957, laying out the area for the town, designed so that one of its mines and a mill would be within the town limits to provide tax revenue. Before long, there were churches, schools, and shopping venues. In 1974, St. Joe Mining Company moved its headquarters to Viburnum, encouraging more businesses to be established in the city. After a hostile takeover bid by Seagrams in 1980, Fluor Corporation purchased the company, which is now owned by the Doe Run Company, whose Southeast Missouri Mining and Milling Division is headquartered in Viburnum. The city is located within the Mark Twain National Forest. Surrounding communities include Bixby, Courtois, Dillard, East End, and Good Water. St. Louis is one hundred and seventeen miles to the northeast.



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