The Missouri Department of Conservation purchased the 5,147 acre property from Mr. Molasky in 1976 for $2,500,000. Approximately 64 percent of the purchase price was supplied from the Pittman-Robertson Act funds administered by the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Prior to settlement, the land area of what is today Whetstone Creek CA, had a tallgrass prairie, savanna, woodland, and forest landscape. The woodland and forest slopes on the rolling hills adjacent to the creek gave way to more open savanna and prairie habitats on the flat plains above the creek.
Portions of the property have had many owners since the mid-1800's (there were 27 different families owning portions of the land in 1876). It was mostly owned by a few landowners who had relatively large properties by the later 1800's. The area was managed as a cattle ranch through most of the 1900's up until the time when the Department purchased the property. A high fence was constructed on a portion of the area in the 1960's and Bison were raised in the enclosure.
The area is today managed primarily for small game species such as quail and rabbits. Management is primarily accomplished through permittee farming, prescribed fire, woodland management, and early successional habitat. It is a popular area for small game hunting and field trial events.
All deer hunting on the area is managed through the state's managed hunting program and must be applied for in order to participate. Turkey hunting and fishing activities are also popular on the area.
The Whetstone Creek Natural Area is designated for the portion of the stream corridor that passes through the area. The Natural Area is designated for the high quality stream and the state threatened Black Nosed Shiner that lives in the creek.