The town was originally established before the Civil War; however, settlers abandoned their homesteads for areas farther east protected by military posts. In 1873, Henrietta was designated a county seat. According to legend, a group of citizens from the nearby town of Cambridge stole the courthouse records for a brief period and claimed Cambridge as county seat. A group of "cowboys" from Henrietta roped the safe with records intact and dragged the "courthouse" back to Henrietta. Today, Henrietta serves as a center for an economy based on agriculture and light industry.
A red granite monument on the courthouse square stands as a war memorial. Hapgood Park offers an RV park for overnight visitors. Off U.S. 287.
Turkey Fest is held the third weekend in April, and the Pioneer Reunion Rodeo is on the third weekend in September.