Prior to 1880, Hardy did not exist. Only a few families lived in this heavily timbered area, and not until the completion of the railroad did the boom times come. Thanks to the railroad, much was needed. The town of Hardy was officially founded in 1883, and was named for James A. Hardy, Jr., a 25 year old trackage subcontractor that saved his boss's life.
In 1994, Hardy was made County Seat of Sharp County's Northern District, with Evening Shade being county Seat of the Southern District. The present County Seat is Ash Flat, established when the two districts were combined in 1967.
Today, Hardy retains its "old town" flavor. The downtown area looks much like it did during Model-T-days...and the merchants work at keeping it that way. Several of these same buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Most of the modern changes have occurred at the ends of town, leaving the heart of Main Street a tiny preserve for quality antique shops, craft stores, specialty shops , gift nooks, and a variety of museums. Campgrounds, cabins, motels, bed and breakfast are available for lodging and several restaurants from fast food franchises to full service. Hardy has three city parks including one on Main Street, Dr. Thompson Park, with public restrooms, benches, and a gazebo where musicians perform on weekends throughout tourist season. Two parks overlooking the cool, clean waters of the Spring River that flow just one block south of Main Street - Buford Beach and Loberg Park, with two pavilions, public restrooms, children's playground, basketball court, and walking trail. The Spring River offers swimming, excellent fishing and canoeing as well as picnic areas.