Howard County is located in northeastern Iowa in the third tier of counties west of the Mississippi River, and to the north it borders the state of Minnesota* It is almost entirely in the Iowan drift soil area, and the soils are mainly of glacial origin. The Mississippi loess soil area extends over the northeastern corner of the county, and in that section the soils were laid down by wind action.
Stevenson, W. H. and Brown, P. E., "Soil Survey of Iowa, Report No. 61—Howard County Soils" (1930). Soil Survey Reports. 59.